MLB News & Moments You Should Know – 9/7/23

An Unfortunate Amount of Bad News Today

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


High Noon In Texas

High noon, 7 PM, same difference, right? It’s called artistic license, look it up!

Whatever the time, Wednesday marked the first time that Justin Verlander and Max Scherzer ever matched up on opposite sides of the lineup card. And well, it didn’t really end up being the pitcher’s duel we would have all predicted as the Astros torched Max, hanging seven earned runs on him in just three innings. Between him and Brock Burke, Houston hit five home runs (bringing their total for the series up to 16, a new franchise record) as they swept the Rangers, including this grand slam from José Abreu:

Verlander, on the other hand, did get to do the cool revolver spin and barrel blow-off thing after the Astros’ 12-3 victory:

(There was a second, unearned run on Verlander’s ledger, but hey.)

It was an inauspicious time for Mad Max to turn into Sad Max, as the Rangers now sit half a game out of the third WC spot and three games back in the AL West. Their odds of winning the division on June 23rd were 64.7%, as of September 7th they’re down to 8.5%. One would have to lean in the direction of this pitching blowup being more of a blip than a new baseline, and Texas’ offense still remains potent, but the unexpected three-team race for the AL West hasn’t been kind to them of late.

Pablo called their win last night “a statement,” so this sweep must be like, a soliloquy?

Aces Gonna Post

On Wednesday Jon Morosi of MLB.com reported that NPB LHP Shōta Imanaga will be posted by the BayStars this winter:

I’ve never really had much of a feel for the pulse of international players, so I’ll defer to MLBTR for some pertinent info:

Imanaga is a veteran in Japan, having just turned 30 years old on September 1. Over eight seasons, he has tossed 977 innings with a 3.18 earned run average while striking out 24.9% of batters faced and walking 6.9%. He’s been ever better this year, with a 2.72 ERA over 122 1/3 innings, along with a 29.1% strikeout rate and 3.9% walk rate. He also pitched for Japan in the World Baseball Classic earlier this year, allowing two earned runs over six innings.

Here at MLBTR, Imanaga has been featured on all four editions of our NPB Players To Watch series, coming in at #3 in the first edition but #2 on each subsequent update. As noted by MLBTR’s Dai Takegami Podziewski in the first of that series, Imanaga doesn’t have an overpowering fastball but finds success thanks to his command and gets strikeouts with his changeup, which is close to a splitter. He also has a cutter, a curveball and a slider. He signed with the U.S.-based agency Octagon to help talks toward a posting agreement last offseason.

And I’ll also defer to the big boss man for the most important thing here (with some more bonus info from Eno):

Sad News For Sandy

In news that made me consider a wellness check on Nick, the Marlins placed Sandy Alcantara on the 15-day IL, specifically with a right forearm flexor strain. That’s never a good diagnosis, especially at the beginning of September as the fish look to make a push to maintain their spot as the third NL WC riding a 6-game winning streak.

As Sandy stated, there’s no timeline for a return right now, but given the reason for the IL stint, I am not filled with optimism that it will be a brief stint.

The Buc Stops Here, For Now

If you were hoping for only one sad injury update today, scroll down to the big blue “Best Moments From Yesterday” section below, please.

Otherwise, it is my sad duty to inform you that Andrew McCutchen has a partial tear of his left Achilles tendon, and he’s done for the year.

Cutch was back in Pittsburgh on a one-year deal, but given that he played in 112 games this year (almost all as DH) and put up a 115 wRC+, and that he’s ending 2023 with 299 career HRs, I would like to think the Pirates would leave the door open for a return in 2024 if both parties want it. Baseball is better when Cutch is playing.

Urías Placed On Administrative Leave

It’s not a surprising move given Julio Uríasarrest on Sunday for felony domestic violence. The next step will be a continued investigation by the league and then a determination made about his suspension. Given that Urías has now made the worst kind of history by becoming the first person to violate the joint domestic violence policy twice, I would imagine it will be quite lengthy.


If you or someone you know is experiencing domestic violence or the threat of domestic violence, you can call the National Domestic Violence Hotline for help at 1-800-799-SAFE (7233), or go to www.thehotline.org for anonymous, confidential online chats, available in English and Spanish. 


Best Moments From Yesterday


O Ks

Baltimore won 10-3 against the Angels last night, giving them their AL-leading 88th win for the season, and some new franchise history to go with it:

It hasn’t taken long for the O’s to go from pitching laughingstock to AL East-leading heavyweights, and they still have the better part of a month to rack up some more whiffs.

A Winn-some Dinger

The Cardinals called up top prospect Masyn Winn back in August, and last night he hit his first big league homer off of fellow rookie Darius Vines en route to an 11-6 win in Atlanta.

And while watching a rookie get a milestone hit is always nice, this will warm your heart even further:

(Side note, Jordan Walker is really tall, I feel like we haven’t been talking about that enough.)

Lawlar And Orderer

Speaking of rookies, and people named Jordan, Arizona’s getting in on the call-up fun, selecting the contract of their consensus #1 prospect Jordan Lawlar, and he’s ready for it:

D-Backs manager Torey Lovullo said “He’ll be the starting shortstop,” and in fantasy terms, that means he may be an impact player from the jump:

Baçeball Façion

Going back to Pittsburgh for a second to look at the finest in headwear straight from the Pirates dugout:


Form and function.




Matt Manning was hit by a comebacker in his start last night, he has a fractured foot and is done for the season.

Gary Sánchez has a fractured wrist, I would have to imagine that ends his 2023.

Patrick Bailey is on the concussion IL.

Michael Soroka is back on the IL, this time with right forearm inflammation. Ominous.

Shohei Ohtani is still being treated as day-to-day and there was a chance he could have played last night.


Articles You Should Read


MLB Best Tools 2023: Managers, Scouts & Executives Vote On Baseball’s Best Talent – BA Staff, Baseball America

Bond Between Julio Rodríguez, Noelvi Marte Endures, Even on Different Teams – C. Trent Rosecrans, The Athletic (sub req’d)


Fantasy Baseball Coverage


Starting Pitcher Roundup

Hitter Performances

Reliever Ranks (Closers) (Holds)

Starting Pitcher Streamers


Featured image by Justin Paradis (@JustParaDesigns on Twitter)

Asher Dratel

Asher hails from Brooklyn, wears a 2008 Joba Chamberlain jersey to every Yankees game he attends, and pronounces BABIP funny. Appreciator of Beefy Lad dingers and beers. @asherd.bsky.social on Bluesky.

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