Besides the Boston Red Sox, there have been few MLB teams that have been virtual locks for the playoffs for a long time. The Cleveland Indians are one of those teams. But not because they are just ridiculously good like the Sox. Instead, they are just in a very poor division and happen to be the best amongst them… by a long, long way. Nevertheless, they are going to be in the playoffs after winning the AL Central, and they showed they made a big splash on Wednesday night. Taking on the struggling Chicago White Sox, they trailed 1-0 into the bottom of the ninth inning. Up stepped Jason Kipnis, who was looking for his 1000th career big league hit. Not only did he get his hit, he did it in style. With the bases loaded and one out, he knocked the 3-2 pitch from Ian Hamilton into the bleachers in right field for a grand slam. While the win still won’t convince people about how good the team is, it’s a big one simply because it’s turning to late September. Games like these, even against teams that aren’t very good, can lead to big, big things down the stretch.
Another baseball player that has reemerged onto the scene in a big, big way of late is Dodgers outfielder Yasiel Puig. When the phenom first burst onto the scene, he was full of energy. He hit for power, ran the bases with uncanny speed, and had an arm like a cannon. It was his celebrations that angered many, but there was no doubt he was the next big thing. He cooled down considerably over a couple of years, but he’s suddenly become a force to be reckoned with yet again. On Wednesday, he hit his sixth home run in his last 18 at-bats to help the Dodgers defeat division rivals Colorado 5-2. The win saw them complete a sweep of the Rockies, which now gives them a 2.5 game lead over them in the NL West. With only nine games left to play, they will have to be liking their chances to go on and wrap it up and seal their place in the NLDS.
In world sports news, Russia has finally been reinstated by WADA (The World Anti-Doping Agency). This move is a controversial one, due to the fact that the Russians had been barred from competition for the last three years. They did not feature in the Olympics as they had in the past, instead having to be referred to “as Olympic athletes from Russia.” It was a very strange thing then, but it happened. It’s time to move past this, and hopefully no such scandals will occur in the future.