Houston Astros lefty Erik Bedard took some heat for electing to end his own no-hit bid against the Seattle Mariners on the weekend.
The 34-year-old Canadian exited Saturday night’s game in Houston with two outs in the seventh inning after his pitch count reached 109.
On Sunday, Bedard’s bench boss came to his rescue.
"Whenever you start to talk about health issues, I'm always one that leans toward the side of protecting the player," Astros manager Bo Porter told the Associated Press. "I told Erik before he even went out there, I said: 'It's going to be your call.'"
Bedard’s explanation was leaving the game was simple: "I've had three shoulder surgeries. I'm not going over 110 (pitches). I'd rather pitch a couple more years than face another batter."
Despite striking out 10 batters Saturday night, Bedard picked up his seventh loss of the season in a 4-2 defeat.
More surprising than Bedard’s early exit was the fact the Mariners became just the second team since 1916 to score four or more runs on one or no hits, according to MLB.com.
SORRY I’M NOT SORRY
Apparently a $72 million contract actually is a “slap in the face.”
When given the chance to recant comments he made to Cincinnati Magazine recently, Reds second baseman Brandon Phillips balked, instead telling USA Today he has nothing to say sorry for.
"I have nothing to get off my chest," Phillips said. "What did I say wrong? Please tell me, what did I say wrong? I want to know what I said wrong. Please tell me. I want everyone to tell me exactly what did I say that was so wrong?"
At issue is the six-year, $72 million deal Phillips inked with the Reds last season. In an August issue of Cincinnati Magazine, Phillips reportedly whines about Joey Votto’s massive, $225 million deal over 10 seasons.
"I just feel like they didn't have to sign Joey to that contract," Phillips said in the magazine. "And for (the front office) to go out there and sign him before they sign me, and they knew I was going to be a free agent? I understand Joey's a good player. He's one of the best players in this game. But I feel like I am too.”
Phillips then took a run at management.
"To this day, I'm still hurt," he said. "Well, I don't wanna say hurt. I'll say scarred. I'm still scarred. It just sucks that it happened.”
Joey Votto took a more sensible approach when asked about the dilemma that’s brewing in the clubhouse.
“How can someone slap you in the face with all that money? It's a nice slap in the face."
Phillips, a three-time all-star, is hitting .269 with 12 home runs this season.
BUCHHOLZ VISITING ANDREWS
Boston Red Sox righty Clay Buchholz remains unbeaten on the season.
Problem is, he hasn’t started a game since June 8 when a puzzling neck injury sidelined the Cy Young candidate.
Now, Buchholz will be paying Dr. James Andrews a visit to get his take on the 28-year-old’s shoulder/trap injury.
“Obviously I don’t really know why it’s taking as long as it is,” Buchholz told weei.com. “Obviously knowing the MRIs and all things I’ve done, they show there’s nothing going on in there. But there’s something going because it doesn’t feel right. Just knowing exactly what is going on will probably help out a lot.”
The Red Sox have previously sent a number of players to the renowned surgeon, including Josh Beckett and Scott Atchison.
“He’s been doing it for a long time,” Buchholz said. “He wouldn’t be spoken as highly of as everybody does speak of him if he wasn’t one of the best in the world.”
DOC ON THE MEND
Philadelphia Phillies ace Roy Halladay threw off a mound on Sunday for the first time since undergoing shoulder surgery in mid-May.
According to CSNPhilly.com, Halladay threw long toss in the outfield at Citi Field before throwing 20 straight pitches off the mound.
When asked how he felt, the 36-year-old, two-time Cy Young Award winner said “good,” according to CSN Philly.
“This is just the next phase,” Phillies pitching coach Rich Dubee said. “He did fine. He’s right on schedule.”
Halladay, an eight-time all-star, underwent shoulder surgery on May 15 to fix a partially torn rotator cuff. Prior to that, he was 2-4 with an 8.65 ERA, one of the highest in his 16-year MLB career.
BRIEFLY: A quad injury has prevented embattled New York Yankees third baseman Alex Rodriguez from returning to the lineup. Rodriguez was expected to report to the Yankees on Monday despite being held out of a minor league game with the club’s triple-A affiliate over the weekend. A-Rod suffered the quad injury on Friday while sliding into a base … The San Diego Padres have placed 34-year-old righty Jason Marquis on the 15-day disabled list with an elbow strain … The San Francisco Giants have placed reliever Jeremy Affeldt on the 15-day DL with a strained groin … The Los Angeles Dodgers activated centre fielder Matt Kemp from the 15-day DL. Although he turned his ankle in the ninth inning of a game against the Washington Nationals on Sunday, the Dodgers said they didn't expect Kemp to return to the DL.