Welcome to ‘Marty’s Musings’, my weekly column of numbers summarizing the happenings in the baseball world. I am your guide for taking an analytic look at the news and notes throughout the game, and highlighting key pitching matchups.
We’ve officially entered the world of weird no hitter baseball, with yet another no-no this past week. The Rays haven’t lost in a week-and-a-half, and Mike Trout will be sidelined with an injury for a couple months.
News & Notes
2 - No hitters thrown in back-to-back games last week. That makes six on the season, most of them from some unlikely pitchers.
98 - Game score for Tigers hurler Spencer Turnbull, who pitched a no hitter against the Mariners last week. It’s the second no hitter tossed against the soft-hitting Seattle lineup. Turnbull struck out nine and walked two.
100 - Game score for Corey Kluber, who struck out nine and walked only one in his no-hit bid against the Rangers last week.
10 - Game winning streak for the Rays, who have not lost a game since May 12th. During that time they’ve swept the Mets and Orioles and go for the four-game sweep against Toronto later today.
3 - Game sweep the Yankees put up on the Central leading White Sox. The Sox have been in the news lately with old-school (the oldest of old school) manager Tony La Russa publicly chastising Yermin Mercedes for hitting a home run on a 3-0 count….against a position player. The lousy weekend came to a lousy end with an Aaron Judge walk off walk in the tenth inning on Sunday. Grab a bucket of popcorn as the White Sox take on the Cardinals in an interleague matchup this week.
14 - MLB teams have hit the 85 percent target threshold to make things a little more normal in the clubhouse and dugout.
Mike Tout will be out for about two months after injuring his calf running the bases.
Pete Alonso is on the IL with a sprained hand, but he could be back as soon as this weekend.
Taijuan Walker also landed on the IL for the Mets after leaving his start after only three innings. He has side tightness.
The Nats placed Victor Robles on the IL with the sprained right ankle.
Washington also added Will Harris to the IL with hand inflammation.
The Twins have the worst record in the American League and now have added Kenta Maeda to the injured list with an abductor strain.
Blue Jays’ third baseman Cavan Biggie hit the injured list with a nagging cervical spine ligament sprain. He should be back in early June.
The Cubs placed Jason Heyward on the IL with a hamstring strain.
Pitching Matchups to Watch
Monday, May 24th
Sam Hentges (CLE) v. Spencer Turnbull, 7:05 ET
We’ll see what Turnbull has in the tank for his encore performance following his no hitter last week. It’s been a mixed-bag for follow-on performances so from from the other pitchers who have thrown no-nos this season.
Tuesday, May 25th
Steven Matz (TOR) v. Corey Kluber (NYY), 7:05 ET
The Jays lineup (even without Biggio) is world’s better than Texas’ lineup. Kluber at least has a track record as a Cy Young caliber pitcher, unlike some of the other starters to throw no hitters this season.
Clayton Kershaw (LAD) v. Zach Greinke (HOU), 8:10 ET
A 2017 World Series rematch, the Dodgers go to Houston for a rare interleague matchup with the Astros. It’ll be an interesting week for the ‘stros who face LA and then San Diego this week.
Thursday, May 28th
Yu Darvish (SD) v. TBD (Houston), 8:10 ET
Darvish has been nothing short of masterful for the Padres this season. He’s on the short-list for NL Cy Young heading into the end of May, and faces a potent Houston lineup.
Shohei Ohtani (LAA) v. Sean Manaea (OAK), 9:40 ET
The Angels may have lost Mike Trout until July, but the most exciting player on the team is still healthy. Ohtani’s athleticism is like nothing else, he regularly pitches and hits home runs in the same game, and Joe Maddon has been moving him to the outfield when he’s done on the mound.
Friday, May 29th
Anthony DeSclafani (SF) v. Julio Urias (LAD), 7:15 ET
We highlighted this series last weekend, and this same matchup on Sunday. The series was entirely one-sided, with the Dodgers sweeping the Giants in San Francisco. The Giants get their rebuttal this weekend in LA. The Giants went from first to third place thanks to a bad week last week.
Sunday, May 30th
Max Fried (ATL) v. Jacob deGrom (NYM), 7:08 ET
deGrom is coming off the IL on Tuesday to face Colorado, but he’ll be showcased in the national game on Sunday against the division-rival Braves. The NL East right now is a pile of mediocrity, with the first place Mets leading the last place Nationals by only 2 ½ games. The Braves have been hovering around .500 most of the year and enter the week with the same 23-24 record as the Phillies, 1 ½ games behind New York.