And That Happened: Wednesday's scores and recaps

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Marlins 5, Orioles 2: Ricky Nolasco has been a completely
different pitcher since his little jaunt to New Orleans to get his
pyloric valve opened or whatever the hell is was. In his four starts
since his return, he’s given up two earned runs, two earned runs, one
earned run and last night zero earned runs. Good thing too, for if he
did not find a job, he no doubt would have been arrested for vagrancy.

White Sox 10, Dodgers 7: Randy Wolf had nada and Cory Wade’s
“relief” pitching was anything but. By the time they were done it was a
9-3 game that was for all practical purpose over. But this loss is
morally justified. I mean, how dare the Dodgers be allowed to
play when Manny Ramirez should be suspended? It’s a slap in the face,
that’s what it is. If a kid gets suspended from school, do they not
burn the building down as a lesson to others? If a soldier is caught
hording rations, do the generals not summarily execute the whole
platoon? I know it’s in the rules that the Dodgers still get to play
ballgames, but it shouldn’t be. They should all have their contracts
voided and be forced to sell linoleum at Color Tile or something. Won’t
someone think of the children?

Mets 11, Cardinals 0: Let me get this straight: David Wright —
the guy who went 4 for 4 last night and is sitting at .356/.444/.510 is
a guy Mets’ fans have been complaining about for a good portion of the
season? I’ll never understand New York baseball. Cardinals pitchers, by
the way, combined to strike out exactly zero Mets.

Rays 7, Phillies 1: Pat Burrell’s two-run homer in the second
proved to be all of the offense the Rays needed, but he picked up an
another RBI anyway. I’m not sure what Phillies’ fans think of that, but
I’d kind of like to think that they’re happy that Matt Stairs is
getting some playing time now, which he wouldn’t be if Burrell had hung
around. Who doesn’t root for Matt Stairs?

Pirates 10, Indians 6: Workers on the “Carl Pavano for Comeback
Player of the Year” campaign feel today how the folks at the McCain
campaign felt the day after the Katie Couric-Sarah Palin interviews
aired.

Blue Jays 8, Reds 2: Aaron Hill, Adam Lind and Vernon Wells all
homered off of Bronson Arroyo in the first and Scott Richmond pitched
seven strong innings in what was never really a contest.

Red Sox 6, Nationals 4: Papi went 2-3 with a homer and 3 RBI —
including the 1000th of his career — as the Red Sox take the second
game in this home-away-from-home series (41,000+ once again, and most
of ’em weren’t Nats’ fans). Red Sox’ hitting coach Dave Magadan was
ejected for arguing balls and strikes. How does that even happen? If
you’re Francona, don’t you tell Magadan to sit down and shut up? Or was
it one of those deals where Magadan just called the ump that name
you’re not allowed to call umps from the dugout?

Brewers 4, Twins 3: Great moments in defensive decision-making:
The Twins are ahead 3-2 in the eighth when J.J. Hardy singles and Jason
Kendall hits a double scoring Hardy. Except the relay throw skipped by
Joe Mauer, so Kendall went to third. Nick Blackburn was backing up
Mauer, and rather than just eat the ball and face the pitcher’s slot in
the order, whips the ball back towards third to try and get the
advancing Kendall. Ball goes wide, Kendall goes home, and that’s
basically the ballgame.

Tigers 5, Cubs 3: That’s six straight for Detroit, as they
extend their lead to five games over the Twins. Contrary to what I said
yesterday, Magglio Ordonez did get the start, and before the game he pulled a Vlad, cutting off his hair. Result: 2-4. Screw science, I say causation, not mere correlation.

Yankees 8, Braves 4: Things were going smoothly for Atlanta
until Kawakami was nailed on a comebacker off the bat of Joba
Chamberlain. I missed it — I was reading “Tip-Tip, Dig-Dig” to
ShysterBoy at the time — and I’m kind of glad I did. He was hit on the
base of the neck, which as recent history has shown, is a pretty
dangerous place to be hit. Jeff Francoeur hit a homer for the Braves,
but don’t worry, he still sucks.

Royals 4, Astros 3: Miguel Olivo may be on pace for 168
strikeouts against six walks, but he hits a homer once in a while too,
and the one he hit in the 11th inning last night won the game.

Rangers 2, Diamondbacks 1: Danny Haren can’t buy a break, as he
once again pitches well with little run support. The Rangers snap their
losing streak at five and remain in first place by the skin of their
teeth.

Mariners 4, Padres 3: Brandon Morrow the starter had his longest
and best go of it yet (5 IP, 6 H, 3 ER, 4K). Yuniesky Betancourt
injured his hamstring and will be out for a while. The game story casts
this a negative. I have this feeling some Mariners fans may not feel
quite the same way.

Giants 6, A’s 3: The Unit, who gave up one run on six hits,
struck out six and walked one in seven innings, looks pretty good
sandwiched in between Lincecum and Cain these days. I don’t know that
the Giants have enough offense to get there, but they could be a
dangerous team to face in a short series should they sng the Wild Card.

Angels 11, Rockies 3: Just yesterday, Rob Neyer said that Jason
Marquis was about to turn into a pumpkin due to his poor strikeout
rate. Looks like it’s midnight (3.1 IP, 9 H, 8 R). Yeah, he struck out
four in those 3.1 innings, but it’s probably because the Angels were
coming out of the shows to swing at that hittable stuff. Vald-the-bald,
by the way: 2-5, 2B, HR, 3 RBI. Let’s hear it for short hair!

The Yankees release former prospect Slade Heathcott

TAMPA, FL - FEBRUARY 27:  Slade Heathcott #71 of the New York Yankees poses for a portrait on February 27, 2016 at George M Steinbrenner Stadium  in Tampa, Florida.  (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
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The Yankees announced last night that they have given an unconditional release to outfielder Slade Heathcott. They needed room on the 40-man roster and he was seen as expendable. There is no indication that they’re going to try to re-sign him or anything. He’s just gone.

Heathcott was the 29th overall pick in the 2009 draft and at one time was considered the second best prospect in the Yankees’ system. Injuries and decreased production as he climbed the minor league ladder took the shine off this particular apple, however. He had a nice little cup of coffee with New York last season, but he’s hitting a mere .230/.271/.310 at Triple-A this year in his second go-around.

Heathcott can play center field and has good tools, but he’s going to have to use them working for another organization.

Pete Rose says no one ever told him not to gamble on baseball anymore

Former Cincinnati Reds player and manager Pete Rose poses while taping a segment for Miami Television News on the campus of Miami University, Monday, Sept. 21, 2015, in Oxford, Ohio. (AP Photo/Gary Landers)
Associated Press
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Pete Rose will soon be inducted into the Reds Hall of Fame and have his number retired and all of that jazz. To mark the occasion, Cincinnati Magazine interviewed the Hit King. And, for, like, the 4.256th straight time, Rose shows that he’s in complete denial about why he was banned in 1989 and why he was not reinstated last year when Rob Manfred agreed to review his case:

In this time of limbo after the ban, did you worry about your legacy? I normally don’t ever worry about anything that I’m not in control of. I wasn’t in control of anything in that situation. I went through a period when I got suspended where I didn’t even go to the ballpark. It’s not because I didn’t want to. There were so many restrictions on me, I just didn’t want to put people through that. It didn’t feel good to me.

Sure he wasn’t in control of anything. He was a tiny boat, cast out onto the waves, left to drift in a sea of uncertainty and powerlessness.

But it gets better. Rose was asked about how he changed his life after his ban:

But you still bet on baseball, albeit legally. It seems like the commissioner’s office has taken issue with that fact. Have you considered not betting on baseball anymore? That’s a good point. You remember reading about Bart Giamatti telling me to reconfigure my life? OK, no one has ever told me—including Manfred, including Selig—what does that mean? I guess my point is, just tell me what you want me to do and I’ll do it. I’m in control. Just tell me. If I want to bet on Monday Night Football, and that’s the way I enjoy my life, why is everybody so worried about that? I’m 75 years old, I have to be able to have some form of entertainment. I’m not betting out of my means. It’s not illegal. If you don’t want me to bet on baseball or anything else, just tell me.

If they told you that— I’d do it. Absolutely. But no one has ever explained “reconfigure your life.” I have taken responsibility for it. I have apologized for it. I have shown I’m sorry. But there again, no matter how many times you say you’re sorry, not everybody’s going to hear you. All I can do is imagine what they meant when they said reconfigure my life. And evidently, no one’s willing to tell me what that means.

So it was all a big misunderstanding. A man who was in his late 40s was banned for gambling on baseball and was told to straighten up yet he had no idea, for 26 years, that maybe it’d be a good idea for him to not gamble on baseball anymore in order to get back into the good graces of the folks who banned him. Damn, why did they pose such impossible riddles to him! If only he had a clue as to what sort of behavior would have improved his chances!

But really, guys: Rose is ready to stop betting on baseball. All you have to do is tell him. If he had known before now, well, we’d be having a TOTALLY different conversation, I’m sure.

Jose Fernandez plunked the Rays mascot

Raymond
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Nuke: “What are you doin’ out here? I’m cruisin’, man.”

Crash: “I want you to throw the next one at the mascot.”

Nuke: “Why? I’m finally throwin’ it where I wanna throw it.”

Crash: “Just throw it at the bull. Trust me.”

The Tampa Bay Rays’ mascot is not a bull — it’s this weird blue thing named Raymond — but apparently Crash Davis got to Marlins starter Jose Fernandez before yesterday’s Marlins-Rays game. Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times reports that Fernandez, a Tampa native, plunked the Rays’ mascot, Raymond, while warming up in the bullpen before the game. Why?

“He was all over my business,” Fernandez said. “I’m trying to concentrate. It was a little change-up that came out of my hand. Just part of the game, man. This is a game, and I love to have fun.”

Raymond needs to learn to play the game the right way if he doesn’t want no-nonsense old schoolers like Fernandez putting him in his place. Reminds of how Bob Gibson and Don Drysdale used to bury one in Mr. Met’s ear on the regular. Guys like them don’t take no guff.

And That Happened: Thursday’s scores and highlights

MIAMI, FL - MAY 21: Jose Fernandez #16 of the Miami Marlins pitches during the first inning of the game against the Washington Nationals at Marlins Park on May 21, 2016 in Miami, Florida. (Photo by Rob Foldy/Getty Images)
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Here are the scores. Here are the highlights:

Marlins 9, Rays 1: Jose Fernandez struck out 12 in seven innings. After the game he said “it’s time for me to learn how to manage myself on the mound and learn how to pitch.” Wow, he’s doing all of this in ignorance? Just imagine how many dudes he’d strike out if he learned to pitch. It’s like Barry Allen in season 1 of “The Flash” when he still didn’t even know what he was doing but was still pretty impressive. I mean, look at Fernandez in the picture above. He even sorta looks like The Flash.

Astros 4, Orioles 2: George Springer hit two solo homers, but the real story was, once again, just how strikeout-tastic the Astros pitching staff was. Astros pitchers combined for 15 strikeouts on the night. That goes with their 18 strikeouts on Wednesday night and their 19 strikeouts on Tuesday to set a new major league record for strikeouts in a three-game series with 52. The New 52, as it were.

Pirates 8, Diamondbacks 3: Gerrit Cole hit a three-run homer but the Pirates blew the lead he gave them. Luckily Josh Harrison, who didn’t start because he was sick, came off the bench to hit  two-run double in the bottom of the sixth to give them back the lead for good. They’d add some insurance later. Always gotta be careful not to add too much insurance, though, as it may inspire Barbara Stanwyck and Fred MacMurray to bump you off. Or maybe Kathleen Turner and William Hurt.

Blue Jays 3, Yankees 1: J.A. Happ allowed one run over seven innings and notched his sixth win. He outdueled CC Sabathia who turned in his best outing of the season (7 IP, 2 H, 2 R, 0 ER, 7K) but simply didn’t get the run support. Sabathia allowed one earned run in 20 innings in the month of May.

Nationals 2, Cardinals 1: Homers from Bryce Harper and Danny Espinosa backed Joe Ross, who is quite quietly having a sweet season at the back end of the Nats’ rotation, boasting a 2.52 ERA in nine starts. OK, he’s probably not boasting. He seems like a fine young man who lets his actions speak rather than his words. That’s what my source tell me, anyway. My source is Joe Ross’ mom. I’m worried that she may be biased, however, so I’m using a second source: his grandma. I’m gonna get to the bottom of this Joe Ross character controversy, that I can promise you.

Rockies 8, Red Sox 2: Jackie Bradley Jr.’s hitting streak ends at 29. And with that, Joe DiMaggio cracks open the bottle of champagne he saves for the end of every hitting streak of 25 games or more. Mercury Morris taught him that trick and you can never go wrong with doing something Mercury Morris thinks is cool. Trevor Story hit his 13th homer.Carlos Gonzalez and Dustin Garneau went deep too. Clay Buchholz‘s ERA is now 6.35.

Brewers 6, Braves 2Ryan Braun and Jonathan Villar each homered as the Brewers swept the Braves. They have three wins in Turner Field in three games this year. Atlanta has two wins in Turner Field in 22 games this year.

White Sox vs. Royals — POSTPONED: I don’t care if it rains

(Let’s all go to the bar)
I don’t care if there’s a hurricane
(Let’s all go to the bar)
And I don’t care if I’m the one to blame
(Let’s all go to the bar)