Phillies, Charlie Manuel making progress towards contract extension

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Phillies manager Charlie Manuel said a couple weeks back that he doesn’t want to talk about extending his expiring contract if a deal can’t be worked out before Opening Day. As if there was any doubt, we probably won’t have to worry about that deadline.

According to Jim Salisbury of CSNPhilly.com, Manuel’s agent Pat Rooney had an hour-long meeting with Phillies general manager Ruben Amaro earlier today.

“It was productive,” Rooney told CSNPhilly.com after the session. “We’re getting closer. There was some give and take. Both sides made some movement, but we’re still a little ways away. They know our position so we’ll keep working on it.”

Rooney added that he left the talks feeling “hopeful” that a deal can be worked out by Opening Day.

Manuel has done just about everything right during his six-season tenure in Philadelphia, so an extension is something of a no-brainer. He has led the Phillies to a 544-428 record (.560) during the regular season, including four straight division titles, two NL pennants and a World Series championship in 2008.

Felix Hernandez dealing with “dead arm”

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Mariners starter Felix Hernandez is dealing with “dead arm” and will head back to Seattle to have his shoulder examined, Ryan Divish of the Seattle Times reports. Hernandez was reportedly visibly upset and left the clubhouse quickly, declining to speak to the media, Divish adds.

Hernandez wasn’t long for Tuesday’s game against the Tigers, as he lasted just two innings, yielding four runs on six hits and two walks with two strikeouts. The Mariners went on to lose 19-9. Hernandez is now carrying a 4.73 ERA over his first five starts.

Not much else can go wrong for the Mariners, who are now 8-13 in last place in the AL West. Mitch Haniger also suffered an oblique injury on Tuesday, joining what is becoming a lengthy list of dinged-up Mariners.

Video: Chris Coghlan dives home to beat the tag

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Blue Jays pinch-hitter Chris Coghlan found a creative way to beat the tag from Cardinals catcher Yadier Molina in the top of the seventh inning of Tuesday night’s game.

With the score tied 2-2, the Jays had a runner on first base and one out as Kevin Pillar faced reliever Matt Bowman. Pillar drove a 1-1 fastball to deep right field. Stephen Piscotty leaped in an attempt to make the catch, but the ball caromed off the wall and back towards the field. Coghlan, who was on first, made his way around third towards home. Piscotty threw home past the cutoff man and the ball reached Molina on several bounces. As Molina went low to apply the tag, Coghlan went high, leaping into the air and somersaulting into home plate to score the go-ahead run.

The Blue Jays would go on to score two in the inning, but the Cardinals answered with two of their own in the bottom half of the seventh. As of this writing, the score remains tied at four apiece.