White Sox may or may not be nearing deal for Manny

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Do with this what you will.

Toni Ginnetti of the Chicago Sun-Times published a report moments ago that contains quite a misleading headline.  “White Sox close to obtaining Manny Ramirez from Los Angeles Dodgers,” it reads, but the actual article simply gives a rundown of the current situation — a situation that we’re all plenty familiar with.

Manny has been placed on waivers.  The White Sox are interested.  The Dodgers have been scouting players in the White Sox’s farm system.

We get it, and nobody would be surprised if the 38-year-old Ramirez lands on the south side of Chicago before this week is through.  But there doesn’t seem to be any sort of breaking news at this time, at least not from Ginnetti and Co. at the Sun-Times.

Manny is batting .306/.396/.497 with eight home runs and 39 RBI over 193 at-bats this season and would likely serve as the White Sox’s everyday designated hitter if a deal is pulled off. 

For what it’s worth — and, mind you, it’s probably not worth much — Ramirez is a .338/.448/.601 hitter over 261 plate appearances in the cozy confines of Chicago’s U.S. Cellular Field.

Battle of the Aces: Max Scherzer takes on Clayton Kershaw tonight

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I hope you don’t have any plans tonight at around 10PM Eastern time, because that’s when we get a pitching matchup for the ages as Max Scherzer will take on Clayton Kershaw at Dodger Stadium. When they meet tonight it will be the first time two pitchers with three or more Cy Young Awards have matched up since 2006. That year, and in 2005 and 2000, Roger Clemens faced Greg Maddux. In 2001 Clemens faced Pedro Martinez.

Kershaw won his hardware in 2011, 2013 and 2014, with an MVP award in 2014 to boot. Scherzer collected trophies in 2013, 2016 and 2017. Each has started the 2018 season in Cy Young form. Kershaw is 1-2, but that record is due to poor run support. He has a 1.73 ERA and has struck out 31 batters and has walked only three in 26 innings. Scherzer is 3-1 with a 1.33 ERA and a whopping 38 strikeouts to only 4 walks in 27 innings.

This will be the third time that Kershaw and Scherzer faced each other if you include the playoffs. The first meeting was a decade ago when both were rookies. They most recently faced off in Game 1 of the 2016 NLDS, way back when Scherzer only had one Cy Young Award to his credit. Kershaw beat Scherzer in that playoff game and the Dodgers beat Scherzer’s teams in the two regular season matchups, with neither guy setting the world on fire. As so often happens in baseball, the hype hasn’t been matched by reality.

Still, there’s always a chance it will. And even if, in the end, this turns into a slugfest, the first couple of innings should at least give us some hope of something good. I’ll be watching.