This week we saw a couple of catchers step to the fore while a surprise pitching duo made their mark. And yes, they’re all Venezuelans.
The Mets of Flushing continue to, well, flush their season down the local sewage pipes, and one catcher in Arizona by way of Simon Bolivar International Airport helped out this week with a game-winning home run against Los Mets . In fact, Oscar Hernandez’ 12th inning shot on Wednesday was the first MLB homer for the 23-year-old catcher, in his first game of 2016.
Oscar is taking advantage of Wellington Castillo’s paternity leave–hey, you gotta take your chances when they come. Oscar himself missed part of last season with a broken hamate (wrist) bone.
Up in Boston, the steady switch-hitting of Zulia-born catcher Sandy Leon in a part-time role: .383 in 39 games–helps to keep the Sox in a three-way heat for first in the AL East. Imagine, fans, if there were no wild card–how much fun would it be then? Fans of the ’67 Sox might see my point.
Speaking of Boston Venezuelans, Eduardo Rodriguez had a great seven innings against New York on Thursday, only to get pulled after 93 pitches. Manager John Farrell said it was “hot, muggy night.” John–Eduardo’s 23 years old and he’s from VALENCIA.It’s hot there all the time and this guy was shutting down the Yankees. Farrell also said the guys who “had done damage to him” were coming up–he gave up 3 hits and 1 run! So the relief corps came in and blew Eduardo’s win. At least he’s dropped his ERA a whole three runs since that demotion to AAA Pawtucket at the end of June.
A lesser managerial surprise than pulling E-Rod was putting Eduardo Escobar in for an inning in Minnesota the same night. Well, the Twins were getting blown out by Houston, so he came in and induced three pop flies. Nice one, E-squared. Despite his manager’s warnings to take it easy, E.E. hit 90 on the radar gun a few times, and left the mound smiling. Hey, it’s baseball, let’s have some fun.