The only thing that has been able to slow Josh Hamilton down during his impressive 2012 campaign appears to be illness or injury. Unfortunately for Rangers fans, and his fantasy owners everywhere, he isn’t quite the bastion of perfect health at the moment.
Hamilton sat out his second consecutive game on Thursday, due to blurry vision and sinus troubles. He attempted to take batting practice with his team before the game, but was unable to do so due to a continuation of his symptoms.
Rather than traveling with his team to Seattle where they open a three-game weekend series on Friday, Hamilton instead flew back to Texas to get examined by Rangers’ team doctors. It seems extremely unlikely that he’ll make it back and get clearance to play on Friday, but it also puts his entire weekend in jeopardy.
He’s having an outstanding year at the dish, hitting .304/.364/.551 with 42 homers and 123 RBI. His 42 bombs are far and away the best output of his career, and puts him one ahead of Miguel Cabrera for the American League lead. If he’s forced to miss even a few games at this stage of the season, it could put Cabrera in the driver’s seat to lock up the first Triple Crown since the 1967 season.
Upton Unleashes Walk-off Winner
B.J. Upton played the role of hero on Thursday, smashing a walk-off three run homer to cap off a six-run ninth inning in an impressive come-from-behind victory over the Red Sox.
It was a critical victory for the Rays, who even with the victory are still chasing 5 ½ games in the Wild Card race. Their margin for error is razor-thin from here on out, and dropping Thursday’s decision could have buried their dreams of making the postseason.
His 2-for-5 night pushed his average up to .250 on the season, and he matched his career-high with his 24th homer. He’s put on an extremely impressive display since the All-Star break, smashing 17 homers, driving home 42 runs and stealing 15 bases in 63 games since the mid-summer classic.
Anderson Officially Shut Down
The Athletics officially announced that Brett Anderson will miss the remainder of the 2013 regular season due to an injured oblique. He left Wednesday’s start against the Tigers after just 2 1/3 innings due to tightness he experienced in his right oblique.
In his six starts this season, he posted a stellar 4-2 record, 2.57 ERA, 1.03 WHIP and 25/7 K/BB ratio over 35 innings. The 24-year-old left-hander is undoubtedly an amazing talent, but he has dealt with a wide array of injuries already in his budding young career.
Anderson hopes to make it back in time to make an impact in the postseason for the A’s, but that will all depend on how his rehab goes over the next few weeks. Travis Blackley will take his place in the rotation for the remainder of the regular season.
Even with the injury issues, Anderson will likely enter the 2013 season as a top-25 starting pitcher in most redraft leagues.
National League Quick Hits: Corey Hart returned to the Brewers’ lineup on Thursday after missing eight games with a left foot injury… The Mets intend to shut down Josh Edgin for the remainder of the 2012 season after his next appearance… Chien-Ming Wang will make a spot start for the Nationals when they take on the Brewers on Sunday… Allen Craig blasted his 22nd homer of the season as the Cardinals swept the Astros on Thursday… Jorge De La Rosa struggled in his 2012 season debut, allowing six runs (five earned) on seven hits over 3 2/3 innings… Pablo Sandoval smashed two homers and drove home four as the Giants thrashed the Rockies… Adam Eaton launched his first MLB homer in a loss to the Padres… Anthony Bass recorded his first career save, striking out the only hitter he faced to protect a one-run lead… The Padres will activate Huston Street from the DL on Friday, and he’s expected to immediately resume his closing duties… Andrew McCutchen belted his 30th homer in a losing effort against the Brewers… Jeremy Hefner surrendered seven runs on six hits and a walk, and didn’t record an out in Thursday’s loss to the Phillies… Tyler Cloyd twirled a gem, allowing one run on three hits over eight strong innings against the Mets… Ryan Howard swatted a grand slam and drove home five runs in a thrashing of the Mets… Ross Detwiler pitched brilliantly, allowing just one run on three hits over six frames in a win over the Dodgers… Jason Motte recorded his third save of the week, and now has 38 on the season… Buster Posey belted his 23rd homer of the season, and looks like he’ll receive strong consideration for the NL MVP.
American League Quick Hits: Coco Crisp was forced to miss another game on Thursday due to pink eye, but is expecting to return to the lineup on Friday… Alex Avila missed his fourth straight contest with a mild concussion, but expects to return over the weekend… Dan Straily is likely to start for the Athletics on Monday in place of the injured Brett Anderson… According to Jon Heyman of CBS Sports, the White Sox will not exercise Jake Peavy’s $22 million option for the 2013 season, but could look to bring him back at a discounted rate… Trevor Plouffe blasted his 23rd homer in an extra-inning loss to the Indians… Mark Teixeira (calf) will begin a rehab assignment in the instructional league, and is aiming to return for the Yankees’ final series of September… Nick Swisher hit a grand slam, powering the Yankees over the Blue Jays… Clay Buchholz twirled seven scoreless innings in a no-decision vs. the Rays… Jose Iglesias hit his first MLB homer… Andrew Bailey imploded, allowing five runs on four hits in just 1/3 of an inning… Drew Smyly is expected to start against the Twins on Sunday in place of the injured Max Scherzer… Yu Darvish picked up his 16th victory, allowing one run over eight strong innings against the Angels… Adrian Beltre returned to the Rangers’ lineup and blasted a game-winning two-run homer off Ernesto Frieri in the ninth inning… Edwin Encarnacion was able to return to the Blue Jays lineup on Thursday… Phil Hughes netted his 16th victory in a win over the Blue Jays.