KEN GRIFFEY JR.
Maldonado, Valdez push Astros past Mariners 6-1
SEATTLE – Martin Maldonado hit a three-run home run, Framber Valdez struck out eight to set career highs for wins and strikeouts, and the Houston Astros beat the Seattle Mariners 6-1 on Tuesday night to close on their fourth straight playoff berth. Houston (28-27) is second in the AL West, comfortably ahead of the fourth-place Mariners (24-31) and the third-place Los Angeles Angels (25-31). “It's fun when you get some hits,” Astros manager Dusty Baker said. “Sadler has been so sharp here recently,” Seattle manager Scott Servais said. "I would say the ability to control his emotions" is the most improved part of his game, Maldonado said.
A look back at big hits, bad calls as MLB eyes new draft era
(AP Photo/Julio Cortez, File)NEW YORK Baseballs amateur draft is about to enter the next phase of its ongoing development same as all those young prospects picked every year. Even before the coronavirus pandemic, the 2020 version was ticketed for a move to Omaha, Nebraska, to coincide with the College World Series there. But with the top pick in the second June amateur draft in 1966, the New York Mets swung and missed. All that hype came to full fruition a decade later, when he was the World Series MVP as the Nationals won the franchises first championship last year. Prior to Appel, the only top overall picks who failed to reach the majors were Chilcott and left-hander Brien Taylor (Yankees, 1991).