The Reds and Ryan Hanigan agree to a three-year deal

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Ryan Hanigan is something more than a backup catcher for the Reds. It’s a split job, really, with he and Ramon Hernandez each taking roughly half the load (but for an injury to Hanigan last year it would have been closer to even workload).  Hanigan responded to this arrangement fairly well in 2010, hitting .300/.405/.429. It was a spike from his production in a similar amount of play in the previous year, but the Reds apparently think he’s worth rewarding, as Buster Olney reports that the Reds have signed him to a three-year, $4 million deal.

The contract includes $800,000 in incentives. No word on how much of that money will be diverted to a certain Ohio blogger who maintains that Hanigan willfully and wantonly missed a ball while playing long toss at the Reds spring training complex two weeks ago, allowing said ball to strike said blogger in the arm causing grievous bodily injury, pain and suffering.
Rumors that the blogger was fiddling with his phone and not paying attention while standing directly behind Hanigan are unfounded and damn nigh slanderous.

Albert Pujols hit his 597th career home run

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Angels DH Albert Pujols smacked his 597th career home run, a two-run shot in the top of the first inning during Wednesday night’s 5-2 loss to the Rays. The blast was off of Erasmo Ramirez and marked No. 6 on the season for the future Hall of Famer.

Pujols finished 1-for-3 with the homer and a walk. After Wednesday’s game, he’s hitting a lackluster .244/.296/.378 with 34 RBI and 14 runs scored in 186 trips to the plate.

Pujols currently ranks ninth on baseball’s all-time leaderboard and is three shy of joining the 600-homer club. He’s currently 13 home runs away from tying Sammy Sosa for eighth all-time.

Chris Sale’s streak of starts with at least 10 strikeouts ends

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Red Sox starter Chris Sale entered Wednesday’s outing against the Rangers with at least 10 strikeouts in eight consecutive starts, tying a record he already shared with Pedro Martinez. He failed do break the record, racking up only six strikeouts in 7 1/3 innings. Fortunately, the Red Sox scored seven runs in the bottom of the seventh to put him in line for the win. Sale gave up four runs (three earned) on six hits and a walk.

After Wednesday’s outing, Sale is sitting on a 2.34 ERA with a 101/14 K/BB ratio in 73 innings. So far, so good for the Red Sox, who acquired Sale from the White Sox in December.

Sale previously racked up 10 strikeouts in eight consecutive games between May 23 and June 30 in 2015 with the White Sox. Pedro Martinez accomplished the feat for the Red Sox between August 19 and September 27 in 1999.