Five years later, Jacque Jones returns to Twins

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Sometimes in life, the joke is on you.
Two months ago I poked a little fun at Jacque Jones attending the winter meetings in search of a job, suggesting that he was washed up and would “be lucky to secure a minor-league contract with an invite to spring training.”
It turns out I was absolutely right, because this afternoon Jones signed a minor-league deal with an invite to spring training. And it turns out he’ll be in camp with my favorite team, reuniting with the Twins five years after departing as a free agent and three seasons after last being a productive hitter. Not so funny now, huh?
While the Twins could certainly use a backup outfielder capable of handling center field, Jones hasn’t played the position regularly since 2007, will be 35 years old in April, batted .147 in 42 games for the Tigers and Marlins in 2008, and spent last season playing for the independent league Newark Bears after getting released by the Reds in spring training.
Hopefully he likes Rochester, New York.

Albert Pujols hit his 597th career home run

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Angels DH Albert Pujols smacked his 597th career home run, a two-run shot in the top of the first inning during Wednesday night’s 5-2 loss to the Rays. The blast was off of Erasmo Ramirez and marked No. 6 on the season for the future Hall of Famer.

Pujols finished 1-for-3 with the homer and a walk. After Wednesday’s game, he’s hitting a lackluster .244/.296/.378 with 34 RBI and 14 runs scored in 186 trips to the plate.

Pujols currently ranks ninth on baseball’s all-time leaderboard and is three shy of joining the 600-homer club. He’s currently 13 home runs away from tying Sammy Sosa for eighth all-time.

Chris Sale’s streak of starts with at least 10 strikeouts ends

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Red Sox starter Chris Sale entered Wednesday’s outing against the Rangers with at least 10 strikeouts in eight consecutive starts, tying a record he already shared with Pedro Martinez. He failed do break the record, racking up only six strikeouts in 7 1/3 innings. Fortunately, the Red Sox scored seven runs in the bottom of the seventh to put him in line for the win. Sale gave up four runs (three earned) on six hits and a walk.

After Wednesday’s outing, Sale is sitting on a 2.34 ERA with a 101/14 K/BB ratio in 73 innings. So far, so good for the Red Sox, who acquired Sale from the White Sox in December.

Sale previously racked up 10 strikeouts in eight consecutive games between May 23 and June 30 in 2015 with the White Sox. Pedro Martinez accomplished the feat for the Red Sox between August 19 and September 27 in 1999.