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Way back on April 2, Yu Darvish came within one out of a perfect game. Earlier this month, Yusmeiro Petit equaled Darvish’s near-perfecto. Tuesday night, it was Michael Wacha’s turn to (almost) make history.
The Cardinals rookie right-hander lost a no-hitter in heartbreaking fashion with two outs in the ninth against the Nationals, as Ryan Zimmerman’s chopper glanced off of Wacha’s glove and shortstop Pete Kozma was unable to make the play.
If Wacha was able to jump a couple inches higher, or if Kozma’s throw was on line, or if Matt Adams was able to make a quick swipe-tag, we’d be talking about the Cards’ first no-no since 2001. As it is, it was still a remarkable performance from Wacha, who struck out nine while issuing two walks on the night.
Since joining the rotation earlier this month, Wacha has posted a 1.72 ERA, 1.02 WHIP and 28/10 K/BB ratio across 31 1/3 innings. Before Tuesday, he was probably looking at a bullpen role in the postseason. Now? The talented youngster might have earned a spot in the playoff rotation.
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Good News for Machado
It’s not often that a ligament tear in a player’s knee is good news, but that’s the case with Manny Machado.
When Machado went down with a nasty looking left knee injury Monday after his leg buckled on the Tropicana Field turf, most everyone was expecting the worst. But, as it turns out, the 21-year-old dodged what could have been a much more serious injury, being diagnosed with a medial patellofemoral ligament tear. You don’t need to worry about what the medial patellofemoral ligament is. Just know that the ACL and MCL were uncompromised.
At this time, Machado won’t even need surgery, as he’ll rest and rehab for 6-8 weeks before trying to do some running. It’s possible he’ll eventually need a minor procedure, but it’s not something that would affect his availability for the beginning of next season.
"If everything falls into place like we think, this is something he could recover from with rest,” executive vice president of baseball operations Dan Duquette said to MLB.com. “He would be out for the rest of the season, but he'd be able to come back and play next year."
Ellsbury on Track for Wednesday
The Red Sox will get one of their key players back Wednesday as they try to maintain the best record in the American League (and home field advantage in the playoffs).
Jacoby Ellsbury went through a bevy of workouts before Tuesday’s game to test out the compression fracture in his right foot, and he apparently passed with flying colors. The outfielder is expected to be in center field and in the leadoff spot for Wednesday’s tilt in Colorado.
Manager John Farrell has indicated that Ellsbury probably won’t play a full game Wednesday, and he seems likely to sit out at least one of the three contests over the weekend in Baltimore. He also probably isn’t going to be running wild on the basepaths as he returns from a foot injury. With all that in mind, fantasy owners would be wise to keep their expectations in check. Still, it’s certainly a boost to the Beantowners.
National League Quick Hits: Carlos Gonzalez (finger) will take soft-toss and then graduate to batting practice over the next few days ... Jean Segura (hamstring) failed a running test Tuesday and is likely done for the season ... Marco Scutaro (finger) has been shut down for the season ... Trevor Rosenthal earned his second save in as many nights in Tuesday’s win over the Nationals ... The Reds are undecided about carrying Billy Hamilton on their playoff roster ... The Padres are optimistic that Will Venable (abdomen) will return later this week ... The Giants have shut down Madison Bumgarner for the rest of the season, giving Barry Zito his final start instead ... Phillies general manager Ruben Amaro said Tuesday that he would like to re-sign impending free agent Carlos Ruiz ... Wilin Rosario (calf) won't return until this weekend, at the earliest ... Andre Ethier (ankle) hopes to return to the lineup Wednesday ... Wily Peralta will not make his final regular season start due to a blister on his throwing hand ... Matt Holliday (back) missed a third straight game Tuesday ... Matt Kemp hit one of two solo homers for the Dodgers in Tuesday’s win over the Giants ... Tyson Ross allowed three hits and one run across eight innings Tuesday versus the Diamondbacks ...
American League Quick Hits: Jason Vargas tossed a four-hit shutout in Tuesday's win over the A’s ... Travis Hafner (shoulder) will be activated from the disabled list Wednesday ... Howie Kendrick homered for the second straight game Tuesday ... Chris Perez will remain the Indians’ closer despite blowing his fifth save of the season Tuesday ... Jason Giambi delivered a walk-off, two-run homer in the ninth inning Tuesday against the White Sox ... Michael Bourn left Tuesday's game with a right wrist sprain but is considered day-to-day ... Jose Iglesias (hand) is still struggling to grip a bat and will be used only as a defensive replacement for now ... Justin Masterson (oblique) will be available out of the Indians' bullpen as soon as Wednesday or Thursday ... Paul Konerko left Tuesday's game against the Indians after fouling a ball off his knee ... Yunel Escobar is day-to-day after being diagnosed with a sore left ankle ... Moises Sierra won't play Wednesday and could sit out Thursday, as well, after spraining his left ankle Tuesday ... Danny Hultzen will visit Dr. James Andrews due to possible tendon/labrum damage in his shoulder ... Mike Napoli (foot) is expected to be back in the Red Sox' lineup Wednesday ... Jeff Keppinger is scheduled to undergo season-ending surgery Thursday on his right shoulder ... James Paxton punched out 10 Royals over seven shutout innings in Tuesday's win ...