Prof: Let’s talk concerts. I’ve been to a few in my life, mostly gospel music. The best concert I ever attended was a Skillet concert in Madison, WI nearly ten years ago. What’s the best concert you’ve ever gone to? Is there a band you’ve seen live many times over the years? (For me, it’s Audio Adrenaline. I know our old pal Old Gator has seen Over the Rhine many, many times, usually during the holidays. Am I correct in this, OG?) Let’s talk about concerts – and a full scope of baseball – in the comments below.
Today’s music is the aforementioned Skillet. This first song, in particular, was amazing live. Imagine your friendly neighborhood Prof scream-singing the chorus of this one along with several thousand sweaty mid-to-late twenty-somethings.
Phillies 1, Nationals 4 (Game 1) – Prof: Funny how The Team To Beat ™, the team that “had the division wrapped up by April”, the team that spent an ungodly amount of money to pick up tons of free agents, the team that ESPN, MLB Network, and numerous other outlets had going deep into the postseason…was eliminated in the first game of a Curly Dubs doubleheader. Funny how that works. Anyway, Anthony Rendon keeps going on his ridiculous ways by driving in the Nats’ first two runs and continues to lead the league in RBI.
Phillies 5, Nationals 6 (Game 2) – Prof: The Treat Urner!!! A grand slam shut the door on the Phillies’ mad hope for a playoff berth, and was the impetus in Washington gaining a wild card spot. Hard to believe a few months ago, the Nats were on the outside looking in. Max Scherzer struck out ten. Bryce Harper still knows how to drop bombs at Nationals Park, though, with a huge solo dinger in the seventh.
Twins 4, Tigers 2 – Scouts: Jake Odorizzi threw a pretty good game, a feat that was slightly diminished by the fact that it was against the Tigers. But nonetheless it lowered the Twins magic number to 2.
Brewers 4, Reds 2 – Prof: The Brew Crew is still out there scrapping, clawing their way towards the wild card. If they keep winning, they might just get there. They beat a strong Sonny Gray at Great American Ball Park, thanks to a Ryan Braun homer and the collective efforts of Milwaukee’s pitching staff – most notably Brent Suter and Josh Hader.
Red Sox 12, Rangers 10 – Scouts: The headline on MLB.com reads “E-Rod grinds through 5 in Texas for 19th win.” I get that it’s the Red Sox and it’s MLB and it’s all Sox kiss-ass all the time, but good lord people, he gave up 7 runs on 11 hits in 5 innings. That’s not grinding. That’s just being horrible, but getting bailed out because your opponent was somehow worse than you.
Marlins 4, Mets 5 F/11 – Prof: Both teams were trying really hard to lose, and threw a half dozen pitchers out there, each, but ultimately the Mets gain the spoils of victory and hold onto playoff hopes by the thinnest of margins. The hero of the day was my guy, Michael Conforto, who went 3-4 and had four RBI. New York wins thanks to a Brandon Nimmo walk-off…walk. Yes, it’s a walk-off.
Yankees 1, Rays 2 F/12 – Scouts: The Rays are absolutely not giving up in their quest to complete their surprising run to the playoffs. Ji-Man Choi homered in the 12th to give the Rays a walk-off win, and a half game lead over the land of Cleve for the final Wild Card spot.
Spiders 11, White Sox 0 – Prof: Sunshine would like to remind everyone that great pitchers in the AL aren’t all camped out at Minute Maid. Mike Clevinger is the new Cleveland ace that we all need to be watching, and he’s flying under the radar – just the way he likes it. Clevinger went seven innings and struck out ten. Jose Ramirez is back from injury and he didn’t wait too long to make his presence known. Ramirez hit a grand slam and then also jacked a three run homer.
Cardinals 2, Diamondbacks 3 F/19 – Scouts: Arizona tied things up with a Ildemaro Vargas homer in the 9th, then a Caleb joseph single in the 13th, and finally put this marathon game to bed with a walk-off single by once again, Ildemaro Vargas. The Cardinals scored their only run in the first, so that was a brutal 18 shut-out innings that Arizona threw at them. 24 pitchers were used in total, the game lasted an official 6 hours, 53 minutes.
Rockies 8, Giants 5 F/16 – Scouts: Yet another super long marathon game, this one was finally ended by Charlie Blackmoon smoking his 31st homer, a 3 run blast to center. Madison Bumgarner hit his first on the season, Trevor Story hit number 34, Evan Longoria reached 20 on the year, and Ian Desmond picked up number 19.
Cubs 2, Pirates 9 – Prof: No offense to any Bucco fans reading this, but how the heck do you lose to Pittsburgh right now? How? How do you let this happen, when you literally had the playoffs in your grubby little paws only a few weeks ago and now you’re on the brink of elimination? The Cubs are a disgrace. They committed five errors, and Chicago gave up seven runs in one inning. The only Cub worth talking about was recent call-up Nico Hoerner, who is basically out there trying to keep a job. Even the usually stalwart Ben Zobrist was lousy.
Orioles 11, Blue Jays 4 – Prof: Wonders never cease! Dylan Bundy won a game! He did a serviceable job, enough for the Baltimore bats to get warmed up. The biggest takeaway from this game was that Bundy was able to stymie Randal Grichuk, Vlad Jr., and Cavan Biggio. Trey Mancini went 5-5, while Dwight Smith Jr. went 3-4 with a home run and 3 RBI, and DJ Stewart also had a homer and three ribbies.
Braves 6, Royals 9 – Prof: The Braves are taking all precautions and resting or sitting down key members of the team to avoid serious injury going into the postseason. This means that a team like Kansas City, with the scrappy Whit Merrifield, will sometimes get the best of them. Freddie Freeman is already taking the series off, and then wunderkind Ronald Acuna Jr. played limited innings and was quickly replaced by Billy Hamilton. Julio Teheran went only 2.1 innings and gave up six runs during that time. Yuck.
Athletics 2, Angels 3 – Scouts: The loss drops Oakland’s lead over the Rays to a half game, with a 1 game lead over Cleveland. We only have 5 games left, and this race could do down to the wire. Oakland has one more in LA, followed by 4 games in Seattle. Tampa has one more vs. New York, followed by three in Toronto, and Cleveland has one more vs Chicago, followed by three in Washington.
Dodgers 6, Padres 3 – Scouts: The Dodgers are on cruise control at this point, just trying to finish out the season without any injuries. Rich Hill for example struck out 5 and gave up 0 hits, but was pulled after two for a guy who’s pitched in 10 games this year. Most of their starters are getting rested, and the Dodgers still pulled out the win. You know who didn’t sit? Max Muncy who hit a grand slam for his 34th homer on the year in the 4th.
Astros 3, Mariners 0 – Scouts: With 5 games left and the Astros a game and a half over the Yankees for best record in baseball, Gerrit Cole’s final start on the season is up in the air. He’s scheduled to get one more start on Sunday, but I gotta wonder if he won’t get skipped to ensure he gets that first start for the playoffs. Anyways, Cole struck out 14 batters to tie an Astro season record, and sits at 19 wins on the year.