ESPN’s Jayson Stark reports that Phillies first baseman Ryan Howard and catcher Carlos Ruiz have both cleared waivers, which means the club can attempt to trade either player unimpeded. Stark adds that two teams are mulling a pursuit of Ruiz, but Howard is “virtually certain” to stay with the Phillies. Howard, 36, has unimpressive overall stats, as he’s carrying a .198/.252/.445 triple-slash line with 19 home runs and 43 RBI in 286 plate appearances. The Phillies have limited Howard to right-handed pitching by platooning him with Tommy Joseph. Shockingly, Howard has been one of the best hitters of the second half, as Corinne Landrey explains at FanGraphs. Using wRC+, an all encompassing offensive
Mark Trumbo still has many chances to hit a home run tonight — it’s only been an inning or so in the Nats-Orioles game — but his weird home run streak is over. Coming into tonight’s game, Trumbo’s last seven hits had been homers. The all-time record had been 11, set by Mark McGwire back in 2001. The last time Trumbo got a hit that wasn’t a dong was back on August 11. Later in that game, however, he hit a grand slam. After that he went 6 for his next 34, with all those safeties dingers. But that’s over now. In the first inning tonight he drove in a run with a two-out single. Then he was thrown out trying to stretch it to two. Good job on the RBIs, Mark. Bad job on the base running. Judgment withheld
The agency for Toronto Blue Jays designated hitter Edwin Encarnacion said a lawsuit that claims their client gave sexually transmitted diseases to a woman is "completely inappropriate and meritless." "[Encarnacion] will take every legal measure to defend himself against this frivolous claim, and will bring appropriate claims in the appropriate forums against all of the individuals seeking to exploit his financial position," said Chris Koras, legal counsel for the agency that represents Encarnacion, in a statement. "This is an unacceptable attack on his exceptional character and stellar reputation within the baseball community as a man who carries himself with the highest level of integrity."