Report: A's made top offer to Scutaro

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FOXSports.com’s Ken Rosenthal tweets that the A’s offered Marco Scutaro a better deal than the Red Sox did before the veteran opted to sign with Boston.
Scutaro was guaranteed $12.5 million as part a two-year deal with a mutual option for 2012 with the Red Sox. The A’s guaranteed the full three years, but Scutaro preferred the chance to win a World Series with the Red Sox.
The news came as something of a surprise, given Billy Beane’s statements last month that suggested the A’s would largely remove themselves from the free agent market. Scutaro could have played either third or shortstop for the A’s, depending on how Eric Chavez looked in spring training. The A’s have expressed confidence in Cliff Pennington’s ability to start at short, but it’s still possible that he’ll end up as a long-term utilityman for the club.
Scutaro is, of course, familiar with Oakland. The club gave him his big break in 2004, and he hit .262/.321/.387 in four seasons with the A’s. With his salary on the rise, he was traded to Toronto for pitching prospect Graham Godfrey and Kristian Bell two years ago.
With Scutaro out of the picture, one wonders if the A’s will now look to bring back another one of their former infielders. Miguel Tejada remains a free agent, and unlike Scutaro, he wouldn’t cost the team a draft pick.

Report: Mariners have interest in Reds’ Jay Bruce

ATLANTA, GA - JUNE 14:  Jay Bruce #32 of the Cincinnati Reds waits to bat prior to hitting a three-run homer in the first inning against the Atlanta Braves at Turner Field on June 14, 2016 in Atlanta, Georgia.  (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
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ESPN’s Jerry Crasnick reports that the Mariners are among the teams that have contacted the Reds about outfielder Jay Bruce. The Mariners enter play Wednesday 51-48, six games out of first place in the AL West and 4.5 games out of the second AL Wild Card slot. Adding an impact bat like Bruce could help in their effort to reach the postseason.

Norichika Aoki and Seth Smith have handled the bulk of the playing time in left field. While Smith has hit well, Aoki has not. Bruce came into Wednesday’s game against the Giants batting .271/.324/.567 with 24 home runs and a league-best 78 RBI.

Bruce can become a free agent after the season if his controlling team declines his $13 million club option for the 2017 season by paying him a $1 million buyout. If he’s traded mid-season, his new team won’t be able to make him a qualifying offer, so the club option may be more enticing than it looks at first glance.

The Padres have homered in 25 consecutive games, tying an NL record

SAN DIEGO, CALIFORNIA - JULY 16:  Adam Rosales #9 of the San Diego Padres hits an RBI single during the tenth inning of a baseball game against the San Francisco Giants at PETCO Park on July 16, 2016 in San Diego, California.   (Photo by Denis Poroy/Getty Images)
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A third-inning two-run home run by Adam Rosales off of R.A. Dickey put the Padres up 2-0, but it also helped the Padres tie a National League record. The Padres have homered in 25 consecutive games, matching the 1998 Braves, the 1994 Tigers, and the 1941 Yankees. The major league record is 27, set by the 2002 Rangers.

The Padres hit three in total on Wednesday in an 8-4 victory against the Blue Jays. One of those dingers was an eighth-inning solo shot by rookie Alex Dickerson, who has now homered in four consecutive games himself. The one he hit on Monday is worth watching, as it got into the upper deck at the Rogers Centre.

As the Padres recently traded Melvin Upton, Jr. to the Jays, Dickerson is likely going to see regular playing time. That’s especially true if he keeps hitting like this.