LEADING OFF: Ohtani on mound, White Sox and Guardians play 2
A look at what’s happening around baseball today:
Shohei Ohtani is scheduled to pitch for the Los Angeles Angels in Houston, and the two-way superstar is off to a better start at the plate than on the mound this season. Ohtani is 0-2 with a 7.56 ERA after two outings. He has 14 strikeouts, but he’s allowed seven runs and 10 hits in 8 1/3 innings.
At bat, last season’s AL MVP has three homers, seven RBIs and nine runs scored in 12 games.
Ohtani is 0-3 with a 5.92 ERA in six career starts against Houston. Jake Odorizzi (0-1, 6.48) goes for the defending AL champion Astros.
After consecutive postponements in frigid Cleveland, the Guardians and White Sox will try again to play ball — this time with a traditional doubleheader beginning at 2:10 p.m. EDT.
The teams were postponed Tuesday by inclement weather and unplayable, cold conditions for the second straight day. The game was called off four hours before the scheduled first pitch, with the decision coming after Guardians manager Terry Francona and White Sox manager Tony La Russa met the umpires outside at Progressive Field.
Snow piled up in downtown Cleveland the past two days and temperatures have been in the low 30s.
Monday’s postponement will be played as part of a doubleheader on July 12.
This week’s four-game series is now a three-game set with two games Wednesday and one Thursday. With a dryer, warmer weather forecast, the AL Central rivals should finally meet for the first time this season.
“I think it’s like between 50-55 (degrees) at game time, which will seem like summertime,” Francona said. “That’s doable. Again, it’s going to be hard. We’re going to have 27 innings potentially in 27 hours, which isn’t perfect.
“But if you’re supposed to play, you play. If you’re not, you don’t. I think everybody kind of came to the same conclusion.”
The second postponement again pushed back a matchup between AL Cy Young Award winners — Cleveland ace Shane Bieber and Chicago lefty Dallas Keuchel. They’ll match up in Wednesday’s opener.
White Sox right-hander Jimmy Lambert will start the second game against Cleveland’s Triston McKenzie.
San Francisco left-hander Carlos Rodón (1-0, 1.50 ERA) has 21 strikeouts in 12 innings over his first two starts this season. He pitches at Citi Field against Mets righty Chris Bassitt (2-0, 0.75), also off to a sharp start with a new club.
First-year New York manager Buck Showalter will miss the game for a medical procedure. The 65-year-old Showalter said he expects to be back to manage Thursday’s finale of the four-game series.
Showalter said the Mets would be managed by committee Wednesday, leaving hitting coach Eric Chavez to lead the offense and pitching coach Jeremy Hefner to oversee Bassitt and the bullpen.
Mets bench coach Glenn Sherlock has been away from the team since Friday due to COVID-19 protocols. Showalter said Tuesday there was a chance Sherlock could return Wednesday.
New York (9-3) swept a doubleheader from the Giants (7-4) on Tuesday.
Atlanta star outfielder Ronald Acuña Jr. is set to play his second rehab game for Triple-A Gwinnett after going 1 for 3 with a double off the right-center wall in his season debut Tuesday at Jacksonville. It was his first game since July 10, when he tore the anterior cruciate ligament in his right knee against the Miami Marlins.
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