LEADING OFF: Joe West to break most game record as referee
A look at what’s going on around the majors on Tuesday:
Joe West is set to break the most game record as a Major League umpire with the No.5,376 when he takes part in the Cardinals-White Sox game in Chicago.
Now 68, West began operating in 1976 – the first time he worked in marble, Hall of Fame member Phil Niekro pitched to Braves wide receiver Dale Murphy.
West would break the mark established by Bill Klem, who worked from 1905 to 1941 and was known for his complete control in creating racing games. “It’s nothing until I call him,” he reportedly said.
The college quarterback who led Elon to the 1973 NAIA Championship game, West became the best-known umpire in the greats for a variety of reasons. Never hesitating to speak his mind – or sing along, earning the nicknames of “Cowboy Joe” and “Country Joe” for his music – West has garnered a lot of praise and criticism over the decades.
At the 2017 All-Star Game, Seattle slugger Nelson Cruz came to the plate, pulled out his phone, and asked wide receiver Yadier Molina to take a picture of himself with West. When asked why, Cruz replied: “He’s a legend, you know?”
There are indications that this is West’s final season. Maybe he will retire mid-season, maybe he will end the year.
Either way, as always, that will be his call.
Mets ace Jacob deGrom is set to start against Colorado after being sidelined since May 9 by strain in his right side. The two-time NL Cy Young Award winner pulled off eight and didn’t walk in three innings without a hitting during an injury rehab outing for the St. Lucia Mets in the Low-A Southeast league last Thursday .
DeGrom, 32, is 3-2 with a 0.68 ERA in six starts for New York this season with 65 strikeouts and seven goals in 40 innings.
“We want to see how the game goes,” Mets manager Luis Rojas said on Monday. “It will be the feeling of the decision on when it comes out. So, at the moment, we don’t have the number of pitches in mind. ”
DEVIL’S RAY DOZEN
Randy Arozarena, Manuel Margot and Tampa Bay can tie the longest winning streak in franchise history at 12 with a win over Kansas City.
The Rays won their 11th straight Monday, scoring seven times in the 11th inning to beat Toronto.
In 2004, playing the Devil Rays, they won 12 straight wins under Lou Piniella.
Lefty Rich Hill starts for Tampa Bay at Tropicana Field in Game 1 of a three-game series against the Royals.
Former high school teammates Jack Flaherty and Lucas Giolito will be on the opposite side when St. Louis visits the White Sox. Ace Cardinals at 25, Flaherty (8-0, 2.53 ERA) started with Giolito, 26 (3-4, 4.35 ERA) at Harvard-Westlake High in Los Angeles.
Former Dodgers teammates Clayton Kershaw and Zack Greinke meet when LA opens a series in Houston. Kershaw (6-3, 3.18 ERA) hasn’t faced the Astros in the regular season since 2015, but went 1-0 with a 4.02 ERA against Houston in three appearances in a World Series loss 2017. Greinke (4-1, 3.77) spent more than three seasons with the Dodgers before leaving as a free agent after 2015.
More AP MLB: https://apnews.com/hub/MLB and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports