MLB News & Moments You Should Know: 5/26/2024

Ramirez's latest blast powers Guardians to 8th straight win.

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Memorial Day weekend is the first real barometer of the MLB season. Entering Sunday, most teams have played at least 50 games, so nearly one-third of the season has been completed. No longer can you say it is too early. Sure, there is still time to overcome a bad start, although three teams are more than 15 games out of first place (Chicago White Sox, Miami Marlins and New York Mets, with the Colorado Rockies just a half-game off that). The Philadelphia Phillies hold the biggest division lead, seven games over Atlanta. But Atlanta won’t go quietly as it has won the last six National League East titles. So buckle up. This should be a fun summer.


Today’s Headlines


Ramirez, Guardians Stay Hot

Ask just about anyone around the game and they will tell you José Ramírez is one of baseball’s best hitters. So when Ramirez gets hot, watch out. The switch-hitting third baseman cranked out his third homer in two games, a two-run shot that sparked the Cleveland Guardians to a 4-3 road win over the Los Angeles Angels. It was Ramirez’s 15th homer of the season and the Guardians’ eighth straight victory. At 35-17, the Guardians have the third-best record in baseball. Ramirez’s third-inning shot not only staked the Guardians to a 4-0 lead, but it made him the first player in MLB to reach 50 RBIs this season. Ramirez has been particularly hot in May, with 10 homers since May 5 against just eight strikeouts.

Royals Win 8th Straight

Speaking of hot teams from the American League Central, don’t overlook the Kansas City Royals. In a game that had just a little bit of everything, Nelson Velázquez doubled home the go-ahead run leading off the top of the 11th inning as the Royals beat the Tampa Bay Rays 7-4 for their eighth win in a row. The winning streak is the longest since a nine-game win streak in 2017. Offense has fueled this run, with the Royals scoring seven or more runs in the last six games, the best stretch in franchise history.

Giants Do Work Late Again

Don’t look now, but the San Francisco Giants have rediscovered some magic. For the fourth consecutive game, the Giants trailed in the sixth inning or later. For the fourth consecutive game, the Giants erased that deficit and won. First, pinch-hitter LaMonte Wade Jr. singled home the tying run off struggling closer Edwin Diaz with one out in the ninth inning, then Brett Wisely drove in the go-ahead run leading off the 10th inning to spark a five-run rally as the Giants toppled the New York Mets 7-2. Mike Yastrzemski provided the knockout blow in the 10th with a bases-loaded double. All four comeback victories have come on the road, the first time a team has done so since the Cincinnati Reds in 1998. The Giants have also won eight of their last nine.

Orioles Power Up 

It could just be some orange and black magic, too. After their offense was blanked for seven innings by the Chicago White Sox, the Baltimore Orioles blasted three homers during a five-run eighth inning to notch a 5-3 victory. Trailing 3-0, Ryan O’Hearn followed Adley Rutschman’s walk with a two-run shot, then, after Ryan Mountcastle greeted new reliever Michael Kopech with a single, Anthony Santander put the O’s ahead 4-3 with his own two-run homer. One out later, Jordan Westburg went deep for the final margin.

Four Straight For Judge

Aaron Judge is having one of those runs. The slugger crushed a home run for the fourth straight game as the New York Yankees dropped the San Diego Padres 4-1, their fourth straight win. Judge also doubled in his four at-bats, making him the first player in MLB history with at least 11 homers and 12 or more doubles in 20 games.

Phils Erupt In 9th Behind Bench Players

Superstars are always nice to have, but what really makes a championship-caliber club is the complementary players who step into the spotlight every once in a while. That was the case for the Philadelphia Phillies, who were on the wrong end of a 3-2 score entering the ninth inning. But that is when things got fun and the Phillies escaped with an 8-4 road victory over the Colorado Rockies. Edmundo Sosa, playing for the injured Trea Turner, tied the game with a triple and scored on backup catcher Garrett Stubbs‘ single as the Phillies poured across six runs in the ninth. That outburst included a three-run homer by star first baseman Bryce Harper.


Best Moments From Yesterday


A Rewarding Moment

Toren Mehta was in the right place at the perfect time to snag Andrew McCutchen’s 300th career homer. But then the Pittsburgh Pirates heard more about the 9-year-old who has acute leukemia and gave him an experience he won’t soon forget.

Celebrating The Negro Leagues

Cooperstown doesn’t see a whole lot of traffic generally until the end of July for the Hall of Fame induction ceremony. But there were stars galore as the Hall of Fame celebrated the Negro Leagues this weekend. On Friday, there was the unveiling of a new exhibit, “The Souls of the Game.” Then Saturday, an exhibition game with 30 players donning a variety of Negro Leagues uniforms for the East-West Classic. Not that it mattered, the East beat the West 5-4 thanks to a Ryan Howard homer.

The Dark Side

Maybe Minnesota Twins pitcher Kyle Farmer is a “Star Trek” fan. Whatever the case, the Force is not with him.

A Cover-up

When your catcher is talking strategy and forgets to do one important thing. Giants starter Jordan Hicks looks out for catcher Curt Casali.

8 Unassisted

When you don’t trust your teammates to make the right play, you do it yourself. At least that is what Griffin Bruns, the center fielder for Marion Local High School did in an Ohio district final playoff game against Fort Recovery. The play happened with one out in the top of the sixth inning with Marion trailing 11-3. It will be a highlight for a lifetime for Bruns.


Injuries and Other Moves


Oakland A’s right-handed starter Ross Stripling (strained right elbow) was put on the 15-day injured list. Right-hander Jack O’Loughlin, a 24-year-old Australian, was called up from Triple-A to make his MLB debut.

Tampa Bay Rays outfielder Josh Lowe (right oblique strain) was put on the 10-day IL. Right-handed reliever Chris Devenski (right knee tendinitis) was activated from the 15-day IL.

Boston Red Sox right-handed starter Garrett Whitlock is likely to undergo an internal brace procedure on his right elbow, a slightly shorter recovery time (11 to 12 months) than Tommy John surgery.

New York Yankees infielder Jon Berti (strained left calf) was placed on the 10-day IL. Infielder Kevin Smith was called up from Triple-A and D.J. LeMahieu (nondisplaced fracture in right foot) transferred to the 60-day IL to make room for Smith on the 40-man roster. LeMahieu remains on a rehab assignment and is on track to return in the coming week.


Articles You Should Read


Giants’ Wade pushes for more Black representation in baseball — John Shea, San Francisco Chronicle

Soto, Judge were almost teammates with Padres — Bob Nightengale, USA Today

Birmingham-Southern, with school closing for good, advances to Division III World Series Alex Andrejev and Kennington Smith III, The Athletic

Orioles’ Irvin, wife jump into action following dog-hoarding case — Andy Kostka, Baltimore Banner


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Steve Drumwright

Steve Drumwright is a lifelong baseball fan who retired as a player before he had the chance to be cut from the freshman team in high school. He recovered to become a sportswriter and have a successful journalism career at newspapers in Wisconsin and California. Follow him on Twitter and Threads @DrummerWrites.

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