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

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

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!

Pirates’ Nick Leyva selected as senior advisor of baseball ops

BRADENTON, FL - FEBRUARY 17:  Coach Nick Leyva #16 of the Pittsburgh Pirates poses for a photo during photo day at Pirate City on February 17, 2013 in Bradenton, Florida.  (Photo by J. Meric/Getty Images)
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Former first base and infield coach Nick Leyva was promoted to senior advisor of baseball operations on Saturday, per a report by Rob Biertempfel of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review. The Pirates also fired third base coach Rick Sofield, with no named successor as of yet.

Leyva joined the Pirates’ organization in the 2011 offseason as a third base coach under manager Clint Hurdle. He shifted to his role as the first base coach and infield coach in 2014, when first base coach Rick Sofield was reassigned to third base prior to the 2015 season. According to Biertempfel, the swap was made in order to optimize the team’s baserunning strategies, all of which appeared to fall flat during the 2015 and 2016 seasons:

The results this season were awful. The Pirates ranked 13th in the National League with a minus-7.0 BsR — a metric that measures how many runs above or below league average a team gets via its baserunning.

In 2013 and 2014, the Pirates had one of the top five BsR ratings in the NL. In 2015, they were seventh with a 2.8 BsR.

This season, the Pirates made the second-most outs at third base in the league and were last in taking extra bases on singles and doubles. Their baserunners went from first to third base on hits a league-low 63 times.

Sofield, in particular, highlighted the Pirates’ poor baserunning choices in games like this one, when he sent Sean Rodriguez home too early during the last vestige of a ninth inning rally against the Phillies.

Following the announcement, Pirates’ GM Neal Huntington issued a statement elaborating on Leyva’s role within the organization:

We have great respect and appreciation for both men. We thank them for their time and effort as part of our Major League team and the Pirates organization. It was a difficult decision, but we felt it was the right time to make this change on our Major League staff. We look forward to Nick’s continued impact in his future role with the Pirates. Nick has held nearly every coaching position at the major league level and at the minor league level, including Major League manager, in his extensive career and will be a quality mentor for our minor league managers, coaches and players.

Lineups for Dodgers-Cubs NLCS Game 6

CHICAGO, IL - OCTOBER 16:  Kyle Hendricks #28 of the Chicago Cubs throws a pitch in the first inning against the Los Angeles Dodgers during game two of the National League Championship Series at Wrigley Field on October 16, 2016 in Chicago, Illinois.  (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
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With Game 6 of the NLCS just hours away, the Dodgers will opt for a lefty-heavy lineup against right-hander Kyle Hendricks. Batting leadoff is rookie outfielder Andrew Toles, who made one appearance at the top of the lineup during the 2016 season. The Cubs, meanwhile, will bench Jason Heyward in favor of Albert Almora Jr.. This will be Almora’s first start of the playoffs, and while he has yet to face Kershaw in October, his right-handed bat could play well against the lefty at the bottom of the lineup.

Game time is scheduled for 8 PM EDT; lineups are below.


1. Andrew Toles (L) LF
2. Corey Seager (L) SS
3. Justin Turner (R) 3B
4. Adrian Gonzalez (L) 1B
5. Josh Reddick (L) RF
6. Joc Pederson (L) CF
7. Yasmani Grandal (S) C
8. Chase Utley (L) 2B
9. Clayton Kershaw (L) LHP
1. Dexter Fowler (S) CF
2. Kris Bryant (R) 3B
3. Anthony Rizzo (L) 1B
4. Ben Zobrist (R) LF
5. Javier Baez (S) 2B
6. Wilson Contreras (R) C
7. Addison Russell (R) RF
8. Albert Almora Jr. (R) RF
9. Kyle Hendricks (R) RHP