Switch-pitcher Pat Venditte earned his first Major League win today, tossing two scoreless frames to help the Athletics notch a 7-4 victory over the Diamondbacks in 11 innings. While Venditte is known mostly for his singular pitching style, he’s also posted a decent 3.31 ERA over 16 1/3 relief innings for the A’s in his rookie season. Here’s more from around the AL West…
- There is a growing sentiment within the Angels front office that David Freese should be re-signed, MLB.com’s Alden Gonzalez reports, though things could change once the team hires its new general manager. Freese is admired for his clubhouse leadership, and while the Angels’ slump obviously isn’t solely due to Freese’s DL stint (he’s recovering from a fractured finger), it’s worth noting that the Halos are 11-23 since Freese’s last game. The former World Series MVP has just a .240/.309/.397 slash line and 11 homers in 353 PA this season, though Gonzalez surmises he could strong interest in free agency given the lack of third base options on the market. If the Angels aren’t willing to bring him back, they could turn to Kaleb Cowart or Kyle Kubitza at the hot corner.
- While the next Mariners GM will have to fix some significant weaknesses on the roster and in the farm system, it’s not impossible that the M’s could contend as quickly as next season, Larry Stone of the Seattle Times writes. Perhaps most intriguingly, Stone suggests that the new GM will have to at least consider the idea of trading Felix Hernandez, which would both clear payroll space and restock the farm with some blue chip talent. Stone stops short of advocating that a Hernandez trade would or should happen, however, and it could be a moot point anyway since Hernandez has full no-trade protection.
- Sam Dyson and Jake Diekman didn’t just upgrade the Rangers bullpen by themselves, but their acquisitions also helped reinvigorate Keone Kela, Evan Grant of the Dallas Morning News writes. The righty was demoted to Double-A on Aug. 1 to keep his arm fresh, a move Texas could afford to make with their new arms in the pen. Since being recalled on Aug. 11, Kela has recorded 12 strikeouts (against just one walk and four hits) over 9 1/3 scoreless relief innings. Kela has put up strong numbers in his rookie season, posting a 2.72 ERA, 3.93 K/BB rate and 59 strikeouts in 53 innings.