Angels bring back veteran infielder Quinlan

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The Angels have agreed to a new deal with free agent Robb Quinlan, writes MLB.com’s Lyle Spencer.
Quinlan was widely expected to depart, probably for the National League, after a third straight season in which he contributed little to the Angels’ cause. The seven-year veteran has spent his entire career in Anaheim, and he was an outstanding bench player in 2006, when he hit .321/.344/.491 in 234 at-bats. However, in the three years since, he’s posted OPSs of 652, 637 and 614.
The thinking was that Quinlan would be more useful to an NL team, but no one offered him a guaranteed deal. Instead, he’s settling for a minor league pact and a chance to battle for a spot on the Angels. Barring more additions, it looks like Terry Evans, Reggie Willits, Quinlan, Freddy Sandoval, Chris Pettit and Bobby Wilson will compete for two bench jobs. Evans and Wilson will have the advantage of being out of options.

Video: Phillies rookies dance to “Greased Lightning”

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As per tradition, towards the end of the regular season, veterans on baseball’s various clubs haze the rookies by making them dress up and do something a bit embarrassing. That used to include things like making rookies dress up like women and carry pink backpacks, but Major League Baseball banned that practice, so veterans had to get marginally more creative.

The Phillies had their rookies — including Rhys Hoskins, J.P. Crawford, and Nick Williams — dress up like characters in Grease and perform “Greased Lightning” at their hotel in Atlanta on Friday night. Not only did the Phils’ vets and other members of the crew get a free show, but so did employees of the hotel and nearby hotel patrons.

Video with sound is not currently allowed to be embedded, so click here for that.

As MLB.com’s Todd Zolecki explains, Hoskins was the inspiration for the gag as he has earned the nickname “Rhys Lightning.” (Rhys, for the uninitiated, rhymes with “Grease.”) Hoskins said, “You always hear about team chemistry. I think stuff like that let’s you get to know guys on a different level, when you’re not at the field. You just become more personable with people. The better relationships you have, there’s a different level of playing for each other. And I think that’s usually a sign of a good team.”

The Twins also had some fun at the rookies’ expense:

Video: Aaron Judge hits 47th, 48th homers, now one shy of tying Mark McGwire’s rookie record

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Yankees outfielder Aaron Judge went yard twice in Sunday afternoon’s 9-5 loss to the Blue Jays, bringing his season total up to 48. That leaves him just one home run shy of tying the single-season rookie record set by Mark McGwire with the Athletics in 1987.

After Sunday’s performance, Judge is hitting .281/.416/.610 with 48 home runs, 105 RBI, and 122 runs scored in 651 plate appearances. He has the AL Rookie of the Year Award on lock and is neck-and-neck with the Astros’ Jose Altuve, Chris Sale of the Red Sox, and the Indians’ Corey Kluber in the AL MVP Award race.