Ubaldo Jimenez beats Twins, improves to 13-1 with 1.15 ERA

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Ubaldo Jimenez wasn’t at his most overpowering this afternoon against the Twins, giving up eight hits and two walks while recording just four strikeouts, but held Minnesota to one run in eight innings to improve to 13-1 with a 1.15 ERA.
Francisco Liriano giving up three runs in the first inning took much of the luster off a potentially great pitching duel, although he bounced back with six shutout innings after the rough opening frame.
Jimenez’s eight hits allowed tied a season-high set in his first start of the year, but he repeatedly wriggled out of trouble by getting four double plays and picking off a runner. He’s now allowed three runs or fewer in all 14 starts this season, including zero or one run in 10 of them, and joins Roger Clemens in 1986 and Lefty Gomez in 1932 as the only pitchers to win 13 of their first 14 starts in the past 80 years.

Report: Blue Jays and Marco Estrada nearing agreement on contract extension

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Jon Morosi reports that the Blue Jays and starter Marco Estrada are nearing an agreement on a contract extension. The deal is expected to be for one guaranteed year, Morosi adds.

Estrada, 34, was set to become a free agent after the season. He earned $26 million on a two-year contract signed with the Jays in November 2015. While the right-hander has a subpar 4.84 ERA on the season, he has a solid 170/67 K/BB ratio in 176 2/3 innings and has looked much better since the end of July. Between July 31 and his most recent start on Saturday, Estrada owns a 3.75 ERA.

J.A. Happ is the only other starter technically under contract with the Jays next season. Marcus Stroman will be eligible for his second year of arbitration and the Jays will certainly agree to give him a raise on his $3.4 million salary for the 2017 season. The Jays will likely be active this offseason in adding rotation help and they’re starting early by locking up Estrada.

Video: Jackie Bradley, Jr. robs Chris Davis of a home run

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Red Sox center fielder Jackie Bradley, Jr. robbed Orioles first baseman Chris Davis of his 25th home run on Tuesday evening, leaping at the fence in center field to make the catch and keep the game scoreless in the bottom of the fifth inning.

Davis swung at the first pitch he saw from Drew Pomeranz, a slider that crossed the middle of the plate.

This game has potential playoff implications, as the first-place Red Sox hold a three-game lead over the Yankees in the NL East. Meanwhile, the Orioles are still in the AL Wild Card race, trailing the Twins by 5.5 games for the second Wild Card slot.