And That Happened: Monday's Scores and Highlights

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Ubaldo Jimenez white cap.jpgRockies 4, Giants 0: The Cy Young Award is decided by something closer to tournament play than match play, but Ubaldo Jimenez’s decisive defeat of Tim Lincecum has him covered in either direction (CG, SHO 4 H, 9K). Linecum appears to have lost his telemetry (5.2 IP, 6 H, 4 R, 5 BB, 3K).

Braves 9, Phillies 3: I hit
this one up yesterday
. One thing I didn’t mention in that writeup
was how hilarious it was when Yunel Escobar popped up at second base and
asked for time out after his third inning RBI. It was hilarious because
he was thrown out trying to stretch his single into a double, so there
really wasn’t a need to call for time. You got thrown out, Escobar, take
all the time you want. Kind of like you did getting your kiester out of
the batter’s box. Not that I have a lot to complain about in this one.

Padres 18, Mets 6: Yesterday Jerry Manuel seemed stumped when asked in what situation he might use Oliver Perez. I think we found our answer: the last 2.2 innings of a monumental blowout against what is supposed to be one of baseball’s worst offenses.

Yankees 11, Indians 2: Andy Pettitte gave up one run over seven innings and A-Rod hit a grand slam and had six RBI.  The game stories play up the fact that Mark Teixeira was intentionally walked before the slam, but really it was a matter of Chris Perez trying to be careful with Teixeira, getting behind 3-0 and then Manny Acta deciding to just give him ball four instead of risking a pitch down main street.

Nationals 14, Astros 4: Ryan Zimmerman and Adam Dunn each collect four RBI and a guy listed in the box score as “C. Maldonado” who I know is Carlos Maldonado but whom, out of a fit of nostalgia, I’m going to pretend was Candy Maldonado, had three RBI of his own. Roy Oswalt was ejected for arguing balls and strikes after giving up four runs in two and a third innings. I’m going to assume that was an intentional passive-aggressive thing designed to make the Nats dubious about him so that he won’t have to reject them via his no-trade clause in the event they make the Astros an offer.

Pirates 2, Cubs 1: That’s six of seven for the Pirates over the Cubs this year. Would that they only played Chicago. Get this: Garrett Jones hit a homer to right field and a Cubs fan — a visiting Cubs fan, as this game was played in PNC Park — threw the ball back out onto the field.  I know that Pirates fans have had a lot of the fight taken out of them these past 17 years, but I hope against hope that a few of them came together to beat the living crap out of that punk. Um, figuratively speaking, that is. You know, with sharp bon mots and stuff.

Angels 7, Royals 1: Ervin Santana shuts down the Royals after which the Angels celebrate with subtle, affirming glances and modest smiles. Sadly Juan Rivera suffered a compound fracture of his jaw in the process and will be out for the remainder of the season.

Marlins 13, Brewers 5: After scoring three runs in three games against the Phillies the Feesh break out for 13 against Milwaukee — seven of which came in a single inning. The Brewers were actually up 4-0 in the sixth before the wheels fell off. Cameron Maybin hit an inside-the-park home run. As is usually the case, Maybin’s was the result of bad defensive play — in this case a bad route to the ball by Carlos Gomez — which is why I’m generally unimpressed by inside-the-park homers.

Athletics 4, Tigers 1: Two teams going in opposite directions: the A’s take three out of four from Detroit and the Tigers drop their fifth in six games. Time of rain delay before the game: 2:42; time of game: 2:48.

Dodgers 5, Diamondbacks 4: A walkoff balk from Esmerling Vasquez
completes the Dodgers’ comeback from a 4-0 deficit. Feel the excitement.

Cardinals 12, Reds 4: A totally different game after the rain delay than
it was before. Both Jaime Garcia and Bronson Arroyo came back when play
resumed, but only the former had any command. Ten walks in all for Reds
pitchers.

Blue Jays 3, Rays 2: Brandon Morrow pitches his best game of the season,
not allowing a hit until the sixth inning and giving up only one run on
three hits. The Rays have now lost six of their last eight games.

Twins 5, Mariners 4: Michael Cuddyer and Jason Kubel hit back-to-back jacks in the fourth to give the Twinkies a 5-1 lead and they basically held on from there.  Cuddyer got the start at second base, which is rather fun. He last did that in 2005.

There will be no criminal charges arising out of Curt Schilling’s video game debacle

Curt Schilling
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In 2012 Curt Schilling’s video game company, 38 Studios, delivered the fantasy role-playing game it had spent millions of dollars and countless man hours trying to deliver. And then the company folded, leaving both its employees and Rhode Island taxpayers, who underwrote much of the company’s operations via $75 million in loans, holding the bag.

The fallout to 38 Studios’ demise was more than what you see in your average business debacle. Rhode Island accused Schilling and his company of acts tantamount to fraud, claiming that it accepted tax dollars while withholding information about the true state of the company’s finances. Former employees, meanwhile, claimed — quite credibly, according to reports of the matter — that they too were lured to Rhode Island believing that their jobs were far more secure than they were. Many found themselves in extreme states of crisis when Schilling abruptly closed the company’s doors. For his part, Schilling has assailed Rhode Island politicians for using him as a scapegoat and a political punching bag in order to distract the public from their own misdeeds. There seems to be truth to everyone’s claims to some degree.

As a result of all of this, there have been several investigations and lawsuits into 38 Studios’ collapse. In 2012 the feds investigated the company and declined to bring charges. There is currently a civil lawsuit afoot and, alongside it, the State of Rhode Island has investigated for four years to see if anyone could be charged with a crime. Today there was an unexpected press conference in which it was revealed that, no, no one associated with 38 Studios will be charged with anything:

An eight-page explanation of the decision concluded by saying that “the quantity and qualify of the evidence of any criminal activity fell short of what would be necessary to prove any allegation beyond a reasonable doubt and as such the Rules of Professional Conduct precluded even offering a criminal charge for grand jury consideration.”

Schilling will likely crow about this on his various social media platforms, claiming it totally vindicates him. But, as he is a close watcher of any and all events related to Hillary Clinton, he no doubt knows that a long investigation resulting in a declination to file charges due to lack of evidence is not the same thing as a vindication. Bad judgment and poor management are still bad things, even if they’re not criminal matters.

Someone let me know if Schilling’s head explodes if and when someone points that out to him.

Andrew Miller for Lucas Giolito: WHO SAYS NO?!!

BALTIMORE, MD - JUNE 28:  Lucas Giolito #44 of the Washington Nationals pitches in the first inning during a baseball game against the New York Mets at Nationals Park on June 28, 2016 in Washington, DC.  (Photo by Mitchell Layton/Getty Images)
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The rumor mongers are churning up some good stuff about the Yankees and the Nationals maybe talking about an Andrew Miller for Lucas Giolito deal. It started with Jon Morosi saying that the Nationals were willing to trade Giolito, one of the top pitching prospects in all of baseball, to the Yankees for Miller straight up.

Taking two steps back, the idea of a Miller-for-Giolito deal seems like it’d be something the Yankees would jump at in a heartbeat. Giolito would, in the normal course, be worth more than a relief pitcher. Even a good one under team control like Miller is. So if the Nats were willing to do this, the Yankees would be fools not to accept, right?

Well, no. Jon Heyman and Joel Sherman are saying that the Yankees are looking for a massive return for Miller, more than what Cubs gave them for Aroldis Chapman. That deal netted New York prospect Gleyber Torres and three other players who have future value. Gioloto is worth more straight up than Torres, but the Yankees want another big package, not just one guy. Assuming those reports are true, are the Yankees being greedy?

Maybe not! Maybe it’s not about the Yankees’ eyes being wide. Maybe it’s about the nature of prospects and how all of our eyes get a bit wide over them, especially when national rankings are released each spring. We see Giolito or someone like him named the top prospect — or maybe a top-3 prospect — and immediately believe they are untouchable or, at the very least, close to invaluable.

But here, if the rumors are to be believed, the Nats are offering him for a relief pitcher. And the Yankees are saying “nah, we need more.” Maybe they both see something the prospect raters and coveters don’t. Maybe, in the abstract, they’re just as high on him as the raters and coveters are but maybe they don’t live in the abstract. Maybe they have the added benefit of (a) experience with the fortunes of young pitching prospects; and (b) a downside risk in loving them too much that the raters and coveters don’t have. No prospect rater risks being fired if the guy they rank #1 in any given year blows his shoulder out. Team employees have been.

I have no idea if there are legs to these rumors. I know that I like Giolito as a prospect, for whatever that’s worth, and the Yankees definitely have a need for young, projectable and controllable pitching talent. Likewise, given that they’re in a transitional period right now and given that they Have Dellin Betances, they could do without Andrew Miller if they needed to. He’s someone they could deal in order to get a guy in Gioloto who would instantly become their top prospect.

But it’s the deadline and people get a bit nuts. Teams ask for the stars, yes, but those of us on the outside tend to forget that a huge number of prospects, especially pitching prospects, never pan out. For all of the hype a deadline occasions and for as much as we see a beautiful future for each and every young hurler that comes down the pike, there are no clear answers about who is or who isn’t being unreasonable here. That is, if any of this stuff is true.

Enjoy the trade deadline, everyone. Just remember that no one knows anything and everyone, on some level, is making a bet.