LEADING OFF: Blue Jays try for team-record 12th straight win
A look at what’s happening all around the major leagues today:
SOARING BLUE JAYS
AL East-leading Toronto tries for its team-record 12th straight victory when David Price starts a three-game series against the second-place Yankees at sold-out Rogers Centre. The Blue Jays have trailed in just two of 100 innings during their winning streak. “Just coming to the park knowing that you’re going to win a game that day, it’s a good feeling,” infielder Ryan Goins said.
The Cubs take a seven-game winning streak across town to U.S. Cellular Field in a Windy City matchup. White Sox starter Jeff Samardzija spent parts of seven seasons with the Cubs before being traded with Jason Hammel to the A’s in July 2014 for a package led by infielder Addison Russell. “I know the atmosphere’s going to be great,” Cubs first baseman Anthony Rizzo said.
Nelson Cruz had the day off for teammate Hisashi Iwakuma’s no-hitter, and got more time to rest when the Mariners were idle Thursday. The Seattle slugger will now try to extend his 21-game hitting streak in the series opener at Fenway Park.
Mets first baseman Lucas Duda has missed three straight games because of a stiff back. Manager Terry Collins acknowledges that if Duda can’t play in the series opener at home vs. Pittsburgh, the NL East leaders might have to consider the disabled list.
Tampa Bay righty Nathan Karns has been running outside the past few days to prepare for his road start vs. the Rangers. It’s been over 100 degrees in Arlington, where Karns lives in the offseason. This is the first time he’ll pitch at home in front of family and friends. “The opportunity is something I definitely dreamt about,” he said. “I’ve seen my share of Ranger games there, anywhere from the top row to first row. It’s going to be something awesome.”
Tom Koehler will start for the Marlins when they begin a six-game trip in St. Louis. They’ve won three in a row overall, but are 18-38 away from Marlins Park. “The record says we haven’t been a good road team, but we have a little momentum right now,” manager Dan Jennings said. “St. Louis has the best record in baseball, and ultimately if you want to be the best, you have to beat the best.”