Report: The Pirates are close to sending Paul Maholm to the Padres

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Though there are a couple of dissenters, multiple other sources are reporting that the Pirates and Padres are nearing a deal for Pirates’ started Paul Maholm. Tim Brown at Yahoo! just said that the teams were “close.”

I”m never sure what to make of these types of conflicts. It seems easier to assume that some guys are of the loop and thus don’t know that something is going on than it is to assume that multiple people are simply being lied to or making something up, but weirder things have happened.

But let’s assume the talks are legit:  The Padres have great pitching overall, but they could use some rotation depth and, of course, don’t know if Mat Latos can truly hold up all year, even if they try to make him.  Maholm is 6-9 this year with a 4.52 ERA. He doesn’t strike out enough guys and he walks a few too many, but Petco is a forgiving park, so who knows?

No word yet on who would come back to Pittsburgh.

Another young fan was struck by a foul ball, this time at Guaranteed Rate Field

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ESPN reports via the Associated Press that a young boy was struck by a line drive foul ball but was not seriously injured during Sunday afternoon’s game against the Royals. The boy and a woman were escorted by a first aid crew to the concourse area and the boy was later eating ice cream in a luxury suite.

A woman was struck in the face by a foul ball also on the first base side at Guaranteed Rate Field on Friday, but she didn’t request medical assistance.

Last week, a young fan at Yankee Stadium was hit by a line drive foul ball, which motivated several teams to commit to extending protective netting at their ballparks. The Yankees, strangely, were not among them. Nor were the White Sox.

Diamondbacks clinch NL Wild Card

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Losses by the Cardinals to the Pirates and the Brewers to the Cubs on Sunday clinched an NL Wild Card berth for the Diamondbacks. Their walk-off, 3-2 win over the Marlins earned them hosting rights for the Wild Card game.

The D-Backs, now 90-66, trailed the Marlins 2-1 going into the bottom of the eighth. Daniel Descalso tied the game at two apiece with an RBI single off of Brad Ziegler. Second half hero J.D. Martinez secured the win with a walk-off RBI single in the bottom of the ninth against Javy Guerra.

The Rockies beat the Padres on Sunday to increase their lead over the Brewers (+2) and Cardinals (+2.5) for the second Wild Card slot. One of these three teams will visit Arizona for the Wild Card game.

The Diamondbacks are back in the playoffs for the first time since 2011, when they lost the Division Series in five games to the Brewers.