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MLB 2023 | Soler belts clutch 26th HR, Gurriel Jr. with two hits, Cortés to face the Astros Saturday

Major League Baseball (MLB) and other Cuban Players News for the 2023 season. A compendium from several sources


Jorge Soler (Photo: MLB)

Aug 2


Jorge Soler belts 26th homer. Soler went 1-for-6 with a solo home run in Wednesday's 9-8 extra-innings win over the Phillies. With the Marlins down by a run in the bottom of the ninth inning, Soler crushed a 98.8 mph sinker from Gregory Soto to right-center field to tie the game at 5-5, setting the stage for a wild finish. The 31-year-old slugger was ice cold coming out of the All-Star break, batting .136 (6-for-44) in 11 games with a 36.7 percent strikeout rate, but he's now hit safely in five straight and gone yard in two of the last three contests while fanning only four times. On the season, Soler's up to 26 homers and 57 RBI through 104 games with an .825 OPS that would be his highest mark since 2019 -- the year he launched 48 homers for the Royals.



Lourdes Gurriel Jr. went 2-for-4 with a run scored on Wednesday against the Giants.


Gurriel went 2-for-4 with a double and a run scored in Wednesday's 4-2 loss to San Francisco. Gurriel doubled in the first inning and scored Arizona's second run on a single, as the Diamondbacks raced to an early 2-0 lead. He was the last D-back to reach second base, as the bats went silent from then on out. Gurriel's stick, however, has been relatively active compared to the rest of the lineup during a three-game sweep by the Giants. He has hits in four consecutive games, going 6-for-15 with two doubles, a home run, two RBI and two runs scored. The outburst follows a 10-game stretch during which Gurriel went 2-for-39 (.051). The 29-year-old outfielder is hitting .252/.299/.458 with 16 homers and 58 RBI across 395 plate appearances.



Néstor Cortés will start on Saturday against the Astros.


Cortés skipped his final minor league rehab start on Wednesday for Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre to jump back into New York’s starting rotation this weekend. He’s been out since early June due to a left shoulder sprain.


Miguel Vargas homered Tuesday for the third time in his last four games with Triple-A Oklahoma City.


The Dodgers have to be happy with how Vargas is performing since his demotion; he’s hitting .313/.425/.597 with five homers in 16 games. It’s not likely to earn him another chance right away, but it’s still good news.



Yasmani Grandal: On bench again Wednesday. Grandal was not in the lineup Wednesday against the Rangers. Grandal hasn't drawn a start since Saturday, though he came off the bench Tuesday and there's no word of any new physical issue.


Braves placed RHP Daysbel Hernández on the 15-day injured list, retroactive to August 1, with right forearm inflammation.


Brad Hand will slide into the open roster spot. Hernández made his major league debut last month and gave up three runs over 3 2/3 innings in four appearances.


Aledmys Díaz was out of Wednesday's lineup. Díaz was not in the lineup for Wednesday's game against the Dodgers. Díaz is 2-for-16 over his past seven games and took a seat for Wednesday's matchup with Los Angeles.


Andy Ibáñez was benched on Wednesday. Ibáñez is out of the lineup for Wednesday's game in Pittsburgh. Ibáñez's hold on a near-everyday role appears to be slipping, as he'll now hit the bench for the fifth time in eight games. Nick Maton got the nod at the keystone Wednesday, and the Tigers may continue to take a committee approach to second base until one player separates himself from the other as the best option. Ibáñez has produced an underwhelming .660 OPS since the beginning of July.

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