Brandon Phillps' lack of hustle costs him a triple

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Brandon Phillps running bases.jpgAnd may have cost the Reds the game.

Phillips had already hit a homer off John Maine last night. In the third inning he hit another blast. Only problems: (a) it didn’t go out of the park; and (b) Phillips admired his handiwork with a casual trot out of the batter’s box and wound up with a double.  Dusty Baker said after the game that he thought it should have been a triple. Based on balls I’ve seen hit to that part of the Great American Ballpark in the past, I’d have to agree.

This was huge, because Joey Votto came to bat next and hit a deep fly to left field which would have scored Phillps had be been standing on third. The Reds ended up losing the game by one.

You’d figure that Phillips would get benched or something for this, but it sounds like Dusty Baker is treating him like the parents on 1980s sitcoms treated their kids:

“He’s been talked to about this. We’ve talked to
Brandon quite often. I guess he’s better than he used to be. We’re trying to get him to
the point where he can be a big difference maker every day. He certainly
has the skill and ability. What’s tough as a manager is when you’ve got an A student who’s
getting Bs.”

I haven’t seen “tough love” like that since “Growing Pains” went off the air. Wait, that’s not true. I think even even Mike Seaver would’ve gotten grounded over a boner like that.

Report: J.D. Martinez signing delayed by medical issue

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The Red Sox reportedly inked free agent outfielder J.D. Martinez to a five-year, $110 million contract last Monday, but there appears to be a slight hitch in the process. According to a report from Evan Drellich of NBC Sports Boston, the team is sorting through a medical issue that has delayed the signing. The specific nature of the issue has yet to be revealed, though Drellich adds that both the team and agent Scott Boras have involved additional medical experts in the process.

For what it’s worth, Martinez remained fairly healthy during his 2017 run with the Tigers and Diamondbacks. The 30-year-old outfielder spent six weeks on the disabled list after suffering a right foot sprain during camp, but managed to make a full recovery by mid-May and didn’t relapse once throughout the rest of the year. Of course, the medical issue holding up his new contract could be of an entirely different nature.

While spring training is already underway for the rest of the Red Sox, club manager Alex Cora doesn’t appear too concerned by Martinez’s absence — yet. “The thing I can do is my thing,” he told MLB.com’s Ian Browne. “My job here is to show up every day and get ’em ready.”