Olympic swimmer Katie Ledecky proved she’s more than a one-sport star on Wednesday night at Nationals Park. Ledecky, who won four gold medals and one silver at the Rio Olympics, fired a perfect strike for the ceremonial first pitch before Washington’s game against the rival Baltimore Orioles. Removes all her medals 1st and hands them 1 at a time to Bryce Harper.
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
Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports reports that the Braves are sending outfielder Jeff Francoeur to the Marlins in a three-way trade also involving the Rangers. The Braves will receive minor league shortstop Dylan Rogers, and the Rangers will receive international bonus money. Francoeur, 32, has posted a subpar .249/.290/.381 triple-slash line with seven home runs and 33 RBI in 276 plate appearances. He was sharing left field for most of the season but was relegated to the bench after the Braves acquired Matt Kemp from the Padres. Moore, 24, was selected by the Rangers in the seventh round of the 2015 draft. He has moved from Single-A Hickry to High-A High Desert. In aggregate, he’s hit .263/.377/.440