MLB News & Moments You Should Know: 5/15/2024

The Astros and controversy, is there a better pairing?

Stay updated on everything baseball with our morning MLB News & Moments articles. We’ve got you covered to keep you in the know.


Today’s Headlines


A Sticky Win in Houston

The Astros have been playing better of late, as they try to climb out of the early hole they created. Even as they earned their third straight win today, it came with a major black mark, as pitcher Ronel Blanco was ejected before starting the fourth inning. The umpiring crew gathered on the mound to check on Blanco’s glove and determined that a foreign substance was enough to warrant further examination, even as manager Joe Espada argued for his pitcher. Blanco, who has been the best and most consistent starter for Houston, will now likely serve a suspension and revive many jokes and suspicion regarding the Astros.


Vintage Sale


When Chris Sale joined Atlanta this offseason, it seemed as the perfect buy-low move that contenders can make when they already have a great roster. If he faltered, there would still be enough talent to contend, but a resurgence could mean big news. So far, it has been the latter, as Sale has rediscovered his form and is wreaking havoc on opposing teams. Today, he was dominant against a good Cubs offense, with two hits and zero walks allowed over seven scoreless innings, striking out nine. This was Sale’s sixth win of the season, as he lowered his ERA to a sparkly 2.54. He was supported by a 6-run effort in the fourth, as homers by Michael Harris II and Matt Olson put the game away for Atlanta, as the NL East race may be an epic chase all summer long.



30 for Philly


In a strange early Tuesday start time, the Phillies must have woken up on the right side of the bed, as Aaron Nola helped them cruise to a dominant 4-0 win over the Mets. With 109 pitches, Nola came close to earning a Maddux, as he was in complete control throughout the game, with only four hits and zero walks allowed, against eight strikeouts. This was the fifth win of the season for Nola, and it also means that the Phillies are the first team to win 30 games this season, even as they missed Bryce Harper in this contest and are still awaiting the return of Trea Turner. In a season where a few teams have looked dominant, there may be no one better than Philadelphia.



Best Moments From Yesterday


Ohtani Mash

With Keaton Winn dealing and a scoreless game going into the fourth inning, Shohei Ohtani decided to put an end to the nonsense and give us an emphatic reminder of the gap between the Dodgers and the Giants. As Winn threw a lazy breaking ball, Ohtani ambushed the first pitch and almost deposited it into McCovey Cove. The blast would open the floodgates for the offense, as LA scored three more runs in the frame before cruising to an easy 10-2 win, as they have won all five matchups with San Francisco.



Rocky Renaissance


If you were asked who owns the longest current winning streak in baseball, it would be natural to think of the Dodgers, Phillies, or Atlanta…maybe even the Yankees or Orioles. Alas, you would be mistaken, as that honor belongs to the Rockies (?!), winners of six straight. Before this streak began, Colorado was an NL-worst 7-28, meaning that they have almost matched their previous total in less than a week. Today’s win was highlighted by a two-out, four-run rally in the sixth inning, which provided enough run support for a solid Cal Quantrill start. As always, you simply can’t predict baseball.



The Frelick Show


Win probability added is still an imperfect stat, with many complicated calculations that factor into the ultimate number. However, sometimes a player does so much in a single game that he becomes attached to the win forever. Take Sal Frelick, the unheralded center fielder for the Brewers. He came into the game without a homer, before opening the scoring with a two-run blast that gave Milwaukee a lead they would keep. Also, he provided two amazing catches in center field, including a Jim Edmonds-like highlight in the eighth that all but sealed the contest. Have a day, Sal.



The Reflex, Waiting in the Park


In a wild game that the Red Sox would eventually win in the 11th inning, veteran Chris Martin reminded us that pitchers are athletes, too. Facing Josh Lowe, a 74mph line drive came off the bat, and it certainly looked faster than that as it was bound to reach the outfield grass. Instead, Martin made a superb snag, with acrobatic reflexes as he caught the ball and landed graciously on the mound. His teammates’ and the announcers’ reactions added to the superb moment.



An Unfair Fair Ball


In a game in which the Mets could not catch any break against Aaron Nola and the Phillies, even the basic laws of physics were against them. With Tyrone Taylor at the plate and the game still competitive, Taylor hit a seemingly innocuous cue shot that was at least a couple of feet in foul territory before spinning right into Alec Bohm’s mitt. An easy out was recorded, as it seems that Philadelphia is really catching all the breaks in 2024.



Injuries and Other Moves


⚾ The Brewers have placed Rhys Hoskins on the 10-day IL with a strained right hamstring. The timetable for his return is still unclear, as it should be revealed over the next few days. Hoskins had been a key offensive piece for Milwaukee after arriving via free agency, with nine homers and a 131 wRC+. On a corresponding move, utility player Owen Miller was recalled to the big leagues. 

⚾ Veteran infielder Joey Wendle has been designated for assignment by the Mets, after a disappointing free-agent stint in which he hit for a .522 OPS, easily the worst mark of his career. This comes after a bad 2023 season in Miami, so it is fair to question if he will get another shot to revive his career, especially now at age 34. 

⚾ Yankees phenom Jasson Domínguez has begun a rehab assignment for Class-A Tampa, with an expected timeline of 20 days before he can be reinstated. He is still recovering from Tommy John surgery following his impressive 2023 debut in the majors, meaning that he will likely be limited to DH duties upon his return, even as that might be a tall task as New York’s offense has been mostly productive from that spot. In similar news, DJ LeMahieu is also expected to begin a rehab assignment later in the week. 


Articles You Should Read


Jo Adell is Finally Putting it TogetherJay Jaffe, Fangraphs

Who Takes the Hardest Swings on each MLB Team?Cole Jacobson, MLB.com


Fantasy Baseball Coverage


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Pablo Figueroa

Pablo Figueroa is a Baseball Writer here at Pitcher List, with experience as a writer since 2013. He lives in Aguascalientes, Mexico - proud home of Los Rieleros. When he´s not thinking about baseball , he's a husband, owns two dogs, watches random episodes of The Sopranos , plays padel, and works on his day job to pay the bills.

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