2. Tonight's matchup in Los Angeles is a great one with Garrett Richards facing Zack Greinke in the first of four games between the L.A. teams, but I can't wait for Tuesday, when Clayton Kershaw faces Mike Trout. They only time they faced off was in the All-Star Game, so this will be their first official matchup.
3. The Dodgers have to be worried about recent poor performance of starters Josh Beckett and Dan Haren. With Paul Maholm now injured (and not that good), the Dodgers may have to make a waiver trade, but that means all the National League teams with a worse record than the Dodgers would have to pass on claiming the pitcher involved in the deal.
5. Adam Jones has some imperfections as a ballplayer -- namely, that poor walk rate -- but he's a joy to watch and as consistent as they come.
6. I hope Mike Zunino isn't the new J.P. Arencibia but with better defense. He can crush a mistake but the hit tool as awful, as evidenced by his .208 average and .257 OBP. Among 189 players with 300 plate appearances, he has the eighth-worst chase percentage on swinging on pitches outside the strike zone. You can be an effective hitter doing that -- see Pablo Sandoval (No. 1 worst chase percentage) or Ryan Braun (No. 7) -- but it sure opens things up for the pitcher.
7. What to do with Pedro Alvarez? Last year's co-leader in the NL in home runs is hitting .234/.321/.401 with 15 home runs, including .189 against lefties. He's also made 24 errors at third, almost all of them throwing. The solution? I think you have to start benching him against lefties as you can slide in Josh Harrison at third. You should also sit him for all games that groundball specialist Charlie Morton starts. It's too late in the season to give Alvarez more time to work through his offensive and defensive issues.
8. Wade Davis is having a completely unnoticed dominant year out of the Kansas City bullpen. Check the numbers. Sick.
9. Corey Kluber goes tonight for Cleveland. I tweeted last week after his 85-pitch shutout against Seattle that's he's a top-10 starter in the majors right now. Too rash for that? He's third in the majors in FanGraphs WAR behind Felix Hernandez and Jon Lester (actually, tied with Lester but listed third).
10. Speaking of the Indians ... Carlos Santana. We never gave up faith in you, Carlos, even after the horrid first two months.
11. Jacob DeGrom is the real deal.
12. I do believe Kris Bryant will be a huge star but that strikeout rate (127 in 112 minor league games) definitely makes you pause a little. Oh, and welcome to The Show, Javier Baez.
13. Matt Cain decided to undergo surgery for bone chips in his elbow. I'm not sure it's a huge loss for the Giants considering he hadn't been all great for them. This way, he can get cleaned up and come back 100 percent next year.
14. Key guy for the Giants down the stretch: Brandon Belt.
15. Jose Abreu. Speaking of guys who can hit despite a high chase rate. Remember when there were concerns that his bat speed may be an issue? He's hit .342 and slugged .657 against fastballs. An absolute beast and if learns the strike zone a little more will be even better next season.
16. Must-watch video: Vin Scully and a little kid dancing. Not together, to be clear.
17. Shameless plug: Enjoyed "Guardians of the Galaxy." And I'm not a big fan of comic-book movies. (Lighten up, Batman! Things aren't so bad.)
18. Via Craig Calcaterra of Hardball Talk: The Indians are more popular than the Reds in Ohio. Hmm. And yet the Reds are averaging 31,015 fans per game compared to Cleveland's 18,250. Some of that comes from northern Kentucky, of course, but you do wonder why the Indians' attendance has been so weak in recent year.
19. As Tristan Cockcroft asked on today's Fantasy Focus podcast: Which offense do you like moving forward, the Padres or Diamondbacks? Ouch.
21. Would you want Ben Revere on your team?
22. More proof that closers can come from nowhere: Zach Britton.
23. More proof that relievers can come anywhere: 164 relievers have thrown 30-plus innings; 38 of them (23 percent) have allowed a batting average under .200.
24. Tanner Roark: The real deal.