And That Happened: Monday's Scores and Highlights

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Phillies 3, Braves 1: I was momentarily angry when Derek Lowe gave up the homer to Greg Dobbs in the sixth, but then I acknowledged to myself that it didn’t matter. Lowe wasn’t likely to pitch a shutout anyway, and with Roy Halladay dealing like he was dealing, that’s what would have been required. So I said “screw it,” poured myself a drink and enjoyed watching arguably the best pitcher in baseball carve my dudes up. It’s far more enjoyable, truth be told, to see someone like Halladay do it than to have some tomato can shut you down. Halladay only needed 93 pitches to throw the complete game for cryin’ out loud. Game was over fast enough for me to read a couple of chapters in this pretty spiffy book I just got before I moved on to the box scores. Hey, I want to win, but if you have to lose, that’s the way to do it.

Reds 8, Mets 6: Also, if your team has to lose, best that they do it on a night when their closest competitors lose too. The one got wild in the fifth with the teams combining to score 11 runs off of starters who just lost it. Jerry Manuel got ejected when a bases loaded strikeout of Scott Rolen was overruled and changed to a HBP, bringing in what was then the go-ahead run.  For what it’s worth I think it was the right call — the ball looked like it hit Rolen — but calls are overturned so rarely that you can see why Manuel got hot.  Oddest thing: this may have been a cross-league makeup call by the umpiring crew.  Same four dudes had a similar play in the Yankees-Blue Jays game on Sunday, but the umps refused to call it a HBP.  Oh, and two homers for Joey Votto. Now that he came up big against New York, maybe Colin Cowherd will finally figure out who he is.

Tigers 12, Orioles 9: I hit this one up yesterday afternoon.  Kevin Millwood might not be able to get traded for a Donruss Duke Snider Diamond Kings puzzle and a pack of those K-Mart MVP cards from the mid-80s right now.

White Sox 9, Angels 2: Two homers for Carlos Quentin, and seven strong innings from Gavin Floyd.  Whatever happened to Scott Kazmir anyway (6.1 IP, 6 H, 7 ER)?

Cubs 9, Diamondbacks 4: Tom Gorzelanny somehow survived walking six guys in five innings. If he makes a habit of that we’ll start calling him Teflon Tom (no we won’t). I think the Diamondbacks had early dinner reservations or something, because they struck out eight times in the final three and a third innings.

Rays 6, Red Sox 5: Daisuke Matsuzaka and Boston blew a 5-1 lead.  Seriously: how can anyone watch Matsuzaka pitch? The guy walked four, gave up eight hits and threw 112 pitches in five innings. It’s bad enough when he wins, but when he’s frittering a game away like that he’s an affront to all that is good and decent in the world.  Terry Francona must like it though. I mean, he had ample opportunity to yank him before the Rays actually came all the way back, but didn’t.

Giants 6, Brewers 1: Bases loaded, game tied at 1 in the seventh inning, one out. Freddy Sanchez grounder to Alcides Escobar looks to be a double play ball — but no — Escobar drops it, everyone’s safe and the floodgates open four four runs, effectively ending the game.  Hey, at least the postgame tailgating at Miller Park is fun and takes the edge off and everything, right?

Royals 6, Mariners 4: King Felix left with a 4-2 lead but the bullpen couldn’t hold on to it when he left after the seventh. Yuniesky Bentancourt hit the go-ahead single in the 10th.

Yankees 3, Athletics 1: Javy Vazquez gave up on run over seven innings. Most interesting stat of the game, however: It was just 58 degrees at first pitch. It’s one of the few times that New Yorkers trying to make it through this sweltering week will ever be envious of people who live in Oakland.

Marlins 6, Dodgers 5: John Ely gave up six runs and nine hits in less than three innings and has now lost four of his last five starts for the Dodgers. Wait, that’s a strange way to put it. It’s not like he’s had starts for other teams during that time.

Indians 9, Rangers 3: Matt LaPorta hit yet another homer for Cleveland — his fifth since his callup. That’s good. Not so good: he was smacked in the back of the head with Elvis Andrus’ elbow during a play at first base and was knocked out of the game. He was taken to the hospital for a CT scan and, according to Manny Acta, he threw up a bit after coming out of the game.  It was a bruising game all around for Cleveland, as Austin Kearns was plunked three times too.

Robinson Cano hit his 300th home run last night

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Last night Robinson Cano hit a solo homer in the ninth inning of the Mariners’ loss to the Texas Rangers. It was his 22nd on the season. Though it was insignificant to the outcome of that game, it was significant to Cano: it was his 300th career homer.

While we’ve become accustomed to not caring much about home run milestones south of, say, 500, 300 homers for Cano is a big deal, as he’s only the third second baseman to cross that threshold in baseball history. The other two: Jeff Kent, at 377, and Rogers Hornsby at 301.

Cano, who turns 35 next month, has a career line of .305/.354/.495 and 1,179 RBI, 512 doubles and 33 triples to go with those bombs. He’s in his 13th big league season and still has six more years left on his deal with the Mariners. He’s averaged 24 homers a year since coming to the Mariners. While he’ll obviously trail off at some point — and while great second baseman’s have this weird habit of just suddenly falling off a cliff — it’s highly likely that he’ll finish his career as the all-time home run leader among second baseman. If he remains healthy he should also get over 3,000 hits in his career.

Cooperstown, here he comes.

Reds sign catcher Tucker Barnhart to a four-year deal

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Mark Sheldon of MLB.com reports that the Reds have signed catcher Tucker Barnhart to a four-year contract extension. The terms: $16 million total, with a $7.5 million club option for the 2022 season that has a $500,000 buyout. He also received a $1.75 million signing bonus.

The deal buys out all three of his arbitration years — he was going to be eligible for the first time this offseason — and the first year of his potential free agency. The club option buys a second. Barnhart made $575,000 this season.

Barnhart, 26, is finishing his second season as the Reds primary catcher. This year he’s hitting .272/.349/.399 with six homers and 42 RBI in 113 games. For his career he has a line of .257/.328/.366 in 330 major league games. His real value is defensive, however. He leads the National League in caught stealing percentage and number of base stealers caught (31-for-70, 44%) and leads all players at any position in the league in defensive WAR according to Baseball-Reference.com.