Putting the Hanley Ramirez incident to rest

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ramirez-hanley-100519.jpgWe’ve certainly managed to squeeze a lot of mileage out of the Hanley Ramirez incident over the last couple of days.

Yes, he loafed. Yes, it was a bad thing. But now, after his apology to his team – and, even better, a three-hit game in a victory over the St. Louis Cardinals on Wednesday – we can all move on. (By the way, did you notice the Marlins are three games behind the Phillies?)

But before we do that, let’s take one last quick run around the Internet to see what they’re saying about the Florida Marlins’ best player.

First of all, in case you missed it, take a look at the big play in question.

  • Our own Bert Blyleven isn’t worried about Ramirez dogging it so much as he hates how the Marlin handled the aftermath.
  • Orlando Magic coach Stan Van Gundy can’t understand why a baseball player can’t hustle when he’s only asked to do so every so often.

“Baseball demands maybe 7, 8, 9 times a game you gotta really bust your ass and make a play. You can’t do that?”

Um, Stan, you might want to talk to your team, which is getting kicked into left field by the Celtics.

  • Joe Posnanski asks his readers to answer the question “What if it had been Jeter?”

My personal favorite: Jeter would’ve caught the ball on one bounce, froze the runners with a look, started a triple play and helped an old lady across Dallas Braden’s mound.

  • Will Leitch (and Joe Sheehan) writes that talent should outweigh effort every time, but still wants Ramirez to “run, you idiot!”
  • And last but not least, Joe Riggins has a name for Ramirez: Lollygagger!

Are you on Twitter? You can follow Bob here, and get all your HBT updates here.

Astros’ bullpen throws combined one-hitter for MLB-best 30th win

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The Astros’ bullpen did yeoman’s work in place of the injured Dallas Keuchel on Monday against the Tigers. Keuchel is temporarily sidelined with a pinched nerve in his neck.

Brad Peacock made the spot start, limiting the Tigers to one hit and two walks with eight strikeouts over 4 1/3 innings. Chris Devenski took over with one out in the fifth, finishing out that inning as well as the sixth and seventh, facing the minimum. Will Harris pitched a perfect eighth and Ken Giles closed out the 1-0 victory in the ninth. Devenski, Harris, and Giles each had two strikeouts.

The Astros scored their only run in the bottom of the first inning as George Springer drew a leadoff walk, then scored on Jose Altuve‘s one-out double. Tigers starter Brad Fulmer pitched well enough to win on most days, giving up the lone run in seven frames.

After Monday’s win, the Astros became the first team to reach 30 wins, sitting on a 30-15 record. With a +55 run differential, even their expected record matches up with their actual record.

Brandon Phillips hit his 200th career home run

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Braves second baseman Brandon Phillips became the 337th player in baseball history to hit 200 career home runs, driving a solo home run to left-center field during Monday night’s home game against the Pirates. Phillips is the 14th second baseman (who played a min. of 75 percent of his career games at the position) to rack up at least 200 career home runs.

Phillips, 35, entered Monday’s action batting .290/.345/.405 with two home runs and 12 RBI in 142 plate appearances. If he’s anything, he’s consistent, as he finished with an adjusted OPS between 90-99 (100 is average) every year between 2012-16 and it was sitting at 97 coming into Monday.