Phillies

MLB Notes: Mets' Matt Harvey to DL, may need season-ending surgery

MLB Notes: Mets' Matt Harvey to DL, may need season-ending surgery

NEW YORK -- Matt Harvey has symptoms consistent with thoracic outlet syndrome, and the struggling New York Mets star could be facing season-ending surgery to treat a serious condition that has jeopardized the career of other major league pitchers.

General manager Sandy Alderson announced the diagnosis Thursday after Harvey was examined in St. Louis by a specialist, Dr. Robert Thompson. Alderson said a decision on surgery is likely to come in the next few days before the All-Star break.

Thoracic outlet syndrome is a condition caused by the compression of nerves, blood vessels or both in the area between the neck and armpit. After his start Monday, the 27-year-old Harvey complained of some common symptoms, which include numbness in fingers and shoulder discomfort. 

The former ace was seen by Mets doctors, referred to Thompson for further examination and placed on the 15-day disabled list Wednesday, retroactive to Tuesday. 

Another temporary treatment option is a "nerve block" that might help Harvey return to the mound fairly quickly, but surgery is probably inevitable at some point and the operation usually requires a four-month recovery period, Alderson said.

Harvey had been scheduled to start Saturday night at Citi Field against Max Scherzer and the NL East-leading Washington Nationals. Right-hander Logan Verrett (3-5) will pitch in his place and could get a chance to hold down that spot in the rotation.

"We'll evaluate it, but right now he'd be the guy we would lean toward," New York manager Terry Collins said (see full story).

Home Run Derby: Defending champion Frazier, MLB leader Trumbo headline field
NEW YORK -- Defending champion Todd Frazier and Mark Trumbo lead the field for Monday's All-Star Home Run Derby in San Diego.

Frazier, second in the American League with 23 homers, will take on Colorado's Carlos Gonzalez in the first round, while Trumbo -- the No. 1 seed and current major league leader with 26 -- faces the Los Angeles Dodgers' Corey Seager.

Cincinnati's Adam Duvall is paired with the host Padres' Wil Myers and Seattle's Robinson Cano will go against Miami's Giancarlo Stanton in the other matchups. The Trumbo-Seager winner will face Cano or Stanton in the semifinals, while the Frazier-Gonzalez winner will go against Duvall or Myers.

Brackets were based on season home run totals through Wednesday.

Each batter gets four minutes per round. A batter may call a 45-second timeout in each of the first two rounds, and two in the final. Players can earn 30 seconds of bonus time with two homers of 440 feet or more.

Cardinals, Indians: Diaz, Kluber added to All-Star teams as injury replacements
SAN DIEGO -- St. Louis rookie shortstop Aledmys Diaz will replace his teammate, infielder Matt Carpenter, on the National League roster for next week's All-Star game.

The American League also made a change, with Cleveland right-hander Corey Kluber stepping in for Toronto pitcher Marco Estrada, who has been placed on the 15-day disabled list.

The replacements were announced Thursday by NL manager Terry Collins of the New York Mets and AL manager Ned Yost of the Kansas City Royals.

Carpenter made his third All-Star team, but left Wednesday night's game against Pittsburgh with an injury. Diaz is batting .319 with 12 home runs, 44 RBI, 22 doubles, 54 runs scored, a .382 on-base percentage and a .534 slugging percentage (see full story).

Braves: Gordon Beckham off DL, Emilio Bonifacio cut
CHICAGO -- The Atlanta Braves have activated infielder Gordon Beckham from the disabled list and designated utility player Emilio Bonifacio for assignment.

Beckham was in the starting lineup at shortstop and batting second for Thursday night's game against the Chicago Cubs after being sidelined 33 games with a left hamstring strain.

The 31-year-old Bonifacio batted .129 with no extra-base hits and 11 strikeouts in 31 at-bats over 15 games. He was signed by Atlanta in the offseason, released April 6, and then re-signed to a minor league deal four days later.

Beckham was hitting .284 before he was injured June 1.

Pete Rose sues former baseball investigator over rape claims
Former baseball star Pete Rose on Wednesday sued the lawyer whose investigative report got him kicked out of baseball for gambling, alleging the lawyer defamed him last year by saying on radio that Rose raped young teen girls during spring training.

Rose said in the federal lawsuit that John M. Dowd damaged his reputation and endorsement deals during a July 2015 interview on WCHE-AM in West Chester, Pennsylvania.

Dowd investigated Rose for Major League Baseball in 1989, leading the league's all-time hits leader to be declared ineligible for the Hall of Fame.

The lawsuit states Dowd said during the radio appearance that Rose associate Michael Bertolini told investigators he "ran young girls" to Rose during spring training, which Dowd called "statutory rape every time." Bertolini's lawyers issued a categorical denial last summer.

"Rose never did any such thing and until the Dowd accusations, no one had ever claimed he did," Rose's lawyers wrote in the complaint. "What Dowd attributes to Bertolini is false: Bertolini states he never told Dowd any such thing."

Rose, who lives in Las Vegas, had applied for reinstatement to the game last year and was about to appear at an All-Star Game in Cincinnati, where he coached and played, when Dowd said on Jim Rome's radio show on June 23, 2015, that Rose "had Bertolini running young women down in Florida for his satisfaction," the lawsuit said (see full story).

Twins: Pitching coach Allen back 6 weeks after DWI arrest
ARLINGTON, Texas -- Twins pitching coach Neil Allen has rejoined the team six weeks after his arrest on suspension of drunken driving. 

Allen was back with the team Thursday for the start of a four-game series at Texas, the last games before the All-Star break. 

The Twins suspended Allen indefinitely after his arrest in the early morning hours of May 27 in downtown Minneapolis. 

Without getting into specifics, manager Paul Molitor said Allen had completed the club's requirements and things that he needed to do (see full story).

Red Sox: INF Aaron Hill acquired from Brewers
BOSTON -- The Boston Red Sox have acquired infielder Aaron Hill from the Milwaukee Brewers in exchange for two minor leaguers.

The Red Sox will also receive cash in the deal that sent right-hander Aaron Wilkerson and infielder Wendell Rijo to Milwaukee.

To make room for Hill on the 40-man roster, the Red Sox designated outfielder Ryan LaMarre for assignment. 

Hill, 34, is batting.283 with eight homers and 29 RBIs in 78 games this season. In his career, he has hit .269 with 159 homers for Toronto, Arizona and Milwaukee. He was an All-Star with the Blue Jays in 2009.

Wilkerson is 6-3 with a 2.14 ERA in Double-A and Triple-A this season. Rijo, 20, was named Boston's 15th-best prospect by Baseball America last offseason.

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MLB Playoffs: Dodgers crush Cubs to reach 1st World Series in 29 years

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MLB Playoffs: Dodgers crush Cubs to reach 1st World Series in 29 years

BOX SCORE

CHICAGO -- Enrique Hernandez put a Hollywood ending on an L.A. story three decades in the making.

Fueled by a home run trilogy from their emotional utilityman, Clayton Kershaw and the Los Angeles Dodgers are finally going to the World Series.

Hernandez homered three times and drove in a record seven runs, Kershaw breezed through six crisp innings and Los Angeles ended the Chicago Cubs' title defense with an 11-1 rout in Game 5 of the NL Championship Series on Thursday night.

"It feels good to hear World Series," Kershaw said. "It's been a long time coming for this team."

After years of playoff heartache, there was just no stopping these Dodgers after they led the majors with 104 wins during the regular season. With Kershaw firing away at the top of a deep pitching staff and co-NLCS MVPs Justin Turner and Chris Taylor leading a tough lineup, one of baseball's most storied franchises captured its first pennant since Hall of Famer Tommy Lasorda managed Kirk Gibson, Orel Hershiser and Co. to Los Angeles' last championship in 1988.

"Every night it is a different guy," Turner said, "and this is one of the most unbelievable teams I've ever been a part of."

Kershaw will be on the mound again when the Dodgers host the New York Yankees or Houston Astros in Game 1 of the World Series on Tuesday night. The Yankees have a 3-2 lead heading into Game 6 of the ALCS at Houston on Friday night, so one more New York win would set up another chapter in an old October rivalry between the Yankees and Dodgers.

Los Angeles made the playoffs eight times in the previous 13 seasons and came up short of its 22nd pennant each time, often with Kershaw shouldering much of the blame. The three-time NL Cy Young Award winner took the loss when his team was eliminated by the Cubs in Game 6 of last year's NLCS at Wrigley Field.

The ace left-hander was just OK during his first two starts in this year's postseason, but Los Angeles' offense picked him up each time. Backed by Hernandez's powerful show in Chicago, Kershaw turned in an efficient three-hit performance with five strikeouts and improved to 6-7 in the playoffs -- matching Burt Hooton's club record for postseason wins.

"To get to be on the mound tonight and get to be going to the World Series on the same night, it's a special thing," Kershaw said. "Who knows how many times I'm going to get to go to the World Series? I know more than anybody how hard it is to get there. So, I'm definitely not taking this one for granted."

When Kenley Jansen retired Willson Contreras on a liner to shortstop for the final out, the party was on . The Dodgers poured out of the dugout and mobbed their dominant closer near the mound, and a small but vocal group of Los Angeles fans gathered behind the visitors' dugout and chanted "Let's go Dodgers! Let's go Dodgers!"

On the field, manager Dave Roberts hugged Lasorda and told the iconic skipper the win was for him.

"I bleed Dodger blue just like you," Roberts said. "Thank you, Tommy."

Hernandez connected on the first two pitches he saw, belting a solo drive in the second for his first career playoff homer and then a grand slam in the third against Hector Rondon. Hernandez added a two-run shot in the ninth against Mike Montgomery.

The 26-year-old Hernandez became the fourth player with a three-homer game in a league championship series, joining Bob Robertson (1971 NLCS), George Brett (1978 ALCS) and Adam Kennedy (2002 ALCS). Hernandez's seven RBIs tied a postseason record shared by four other players who all did it in a Division Series.

Troy O'Leary was the previous player to have seven RBIs in a playoff game, for Boston at Cleveland in the 1999 ALDS.

It was a stunning display for a player with 28 career homers who remains concerned about his native Puerto Rico, which is recovering from a devastating hurricane. He delivered a historic performance in front of his father, Enrique Hernandez Sr., who was diagnosed with a blood cancer related to leukemia in December 2015, but got word last November that he was in remission.

"For me to be able to come here and do something like this is pretty special," said Hernandez, who also goes by Kik?. "My body's here, but my mind's kind of back home. It's hard being away from home with what's going on.

"All I want to do right now is go to my dad and give him a big hug."

Kris Bryant homered for Chicago, but the NL Central champions finished with just four hits in another tough night at the plate. Each of their eight runs in the NLCS came via the long ball, and they batted just .156 for the series with 53 strikeouts.

Long playoff runs in each of the last two years and a grueling five-game Division Series against Washington seemed to sap Chicago of some energy, and its pitching faltered against sweet-swinging Los Angeles. Jose Quintana was pulled in the third inning of the final game, and the Cubs never recovered.

"They executed their plan," Bryant said. "They pitched great and the bullpen was lights out. That makes for a tough time scoring runs."

Turner and Taylor helped put it away for Los Angeles, contributing to a 16-hit outburst while closing out a pair of impressive performances.

Turner singled home Taylor in the Dodgers' five-run third, giving him seven RBIs in the series and 24 throughout his postseason career. Taylor finished with two hits and scored two runs as the Dodgers, who have won five straight NL West titles, improved to 7-1 in this postseason.

Taylor's versatility helped Los Angeles cover for the loss of All-Star shortstop Corey Seager, who missed the series with a back injury, but is expected to return in the next round. Coming off a breakout season, the 27-year-old Taylor hit .316 with two homers and scored five times against the Cubs.

"I couldn't be happier to be a part of this and be with these guys," Taylor said. "It's been an unbelievable year, and I'm just super excited."

Out with a bang
Hernandez joined Kennedy (2002), Adrian Beltre (2011), Reggie Jackson (1977 vs. the Dodgers) and Babe Ruth (1928) as players to hit three home runs in a postseason series clincher.

Lights out
Dodgers relievers have thrown 23 consecutive scoreless innings, a postseason record.

MLB Playoffs: Javier Baez snaps out of funk to help Cubs avoid sweep

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MLB Playoffs: Javier Baez snaps out of funk to help Cubs avoid sweep

CHICAGO -- Javier Baez snapped an 0-for-20 skid with two home runs, Wade Davis hung on for a six-out save and the Chicago Cubs avoided a sweep, holding off the Los Angeles Dodgers 3-2 Wednesday night in Game 4 of the NL Championship Series.

Jake Arrieta pitched three-hit ball into the seventh inning to held the defending World Series champion Cubs close their deficit to 3-1. Manager Joe Maddon got ejected for the second time in this series in the eighth, and a packed Wrigley Field crowd watched Davis get Cody Bellinger to ground into a game-ending double play.

Maddon was heavily criticized for not using Davis during a 4-1 loss in Game 2. This time, the Cubs closer threw 48 pitches to finish the job.

Willson Contreras also homered for the Cubs. Bellinger and Justin Turner connected for the Dodgers, who had won a team-record six straight playoff games.

Game 5 is Thursday, with Jose Quintana pitching for Chicago against Dodgers ace Clayton Kershaw (see full recap).

Tanaka, Yankees blank Astros to take ALCS lead
NEW YORK -- Masahiro Tanaka pitched seven innings of three-hit ball and the New York Yankees finally solved Houston Astros nemesis Dallas Keuchel, beating the ace lefty 5-0 on Wednesday for a 3-2 lead in the AL Championship Series.

Gary Sanchez hit an RBI single off Keuchel and later homered to help the wild-card Yankees win for the third straight day at home and move within one victory of their first trip to the World Series since 2009.

The teams head back to Houston for Game 6 on Friday night, when Justin Verlander and the reeling Astros will try to regain their footing following an off day and force a decisive Game 7. Luis Severino is scheduled to start for New York.

Just days ago, Houston was up two games to none and appeared to be closing in on its second World Series appearance. But the Astros, like defending AL champion Cleveland before them, have been unable to put away these poised Yankees, who improved to 6-0 at home in this postseason in front of their cheering, chanting fans (see full recap).