Lastings Milledge got deked by fireworks

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Lastings Milledge Pirates.jpgCan’t say I’ve ever seen this one before. In the fourth inning of last night’s Pirates-Cubs game, Lastings Milledge launched a ball towards left field.  The fireworks fired! The music played! Lastings began to circle the bases and . . . got tagged out between second and third.  Wha?

Seems that the ball merely bounced off the wall.  You can watch it here. Obviously whoever is in charge of the music and pyrotechnics jumped the gun a little.  After the game Milledge admitted that he was watching the sky and not the umpires’ signal, saying “I never thought that it didn’t go out because the music was playing and
the fireworks.”

Given that (a) the announcer thought it was gone too and (b) the Pirates had a 10-0 lead at the time we can classify this as a venial sin instead of a mortal one, but really Lastings: next time watch for the umpire to twirl his finger around in the air. I promise that they’ll let you trot on home if you stop on second and it does turn out to be a homer.

Cubs sign sinkerballer Steve Cishek

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Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic reports that the Cubs have signed reliever Steve Cishek. No details about the deal are known yet. For what it’s worth, most relievers are signing two-year deals so far this winter and Cishek’s last deal was a two-year pact.

Cishek, 31-year-old sidearmer who throws a surprisingly fast sinkerball, posted a 2.01 ERA and a 41/14 K/BB ratio and allowed just 26 hits in 44.2 innings between the Mariners and Rays last season. He saved 25 games for the M’s in 2016. Last year he missed the first month and a half of the season following hip surgery, but seemed pretty healthy later in the year.

A nice pickup for Chicago.