Sam Fuld

And That Happened Express: Saturday’s scores and highlights

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White Sox 4, Rays 2: Holy crap, did Sam Fuld make a spectacular catch, or what?

Yankees 9, Red Sox 4: Two homers for Russell Martin. I’d say more, but apparently this game was force-fed to the nation by FOX, even in places where the other FOX regional games should probably have been going. Such as Macon, Georgia.  Really: Braves-Phillies are playing and Macon, Georgia gets the Yankees. That makes sense.

Orioles 5, Rangers 0; Rangers 13, Orioles 1: I did a Q&A over at the Orioles Hangout blog last night. In it I talked glowingly about the O’s young rotation, including Zach Britton, who pitched game 1, and Jake Arrieta, who pitched game 2.  I guess I was half right.

Brewers 6, Cubs 0: Prince Fielder had three doubles. I’m assuming he also had an oxygen treatment.

Rockies 6, Pirates 4: At 5-2, the Rockies are off to their best start since 1998.

Marlins 7, Astros 5: Hanley out with a bum leg moved Donnie Murphy to short and put Greg Dobbs in at third and he hit a big homer and had three RBI.  That’s how Wally Pipp lost his job, right?  Oh, wait, no, it was nothing like that at all.

Athletics 1, Twins 0: Gio Gonzalez is 2-0 with an 0.69 ERA in his first two starts.  BTW: how does a 1-0 game with only 11 total hits between the teams last three hours and five minutes?

Mets 8, Nationals 4: Two home runs for Carlos Beltran.

Phillies 10, Braves 2: In the 26 years I’ve been watching Braves baseball, I can’t remember a player who has abused the Braves more than Carlos Ruiz abuses the Braves. Chooch’s pinch hit grand slam put this one out of reach.

Royals 3, Tigers 1: Bruce Chen looked good. If you would have told me a few years ago that he’d still be in the league in 2011 I would have said you were insane.

Dodgers 4, Padres 2,Dodgers 4, Padres 3:  L.A. wins the resumption of the game that was suspended on Friday night. And of course it had to go 11 innings. Then Kuroda shut ’em down in the nightcap.

Giants 3, Cardinals 2: Colby Rasmus was a temporary hero via a go-ahead homer in the seventh and then Colby Rasmus, well, he wasn’t a goat, exactly, because get got close to the ball, but Miguel Tejada’s two-run double with two outs in the bottom of the ninth just eluded his glove. La Russa probably needs a scapegoat right now, so maybe it will do.

Indians 2, Mariners 1: Cleveland is 6-2.  That is not a misprint. Although don’t book my seat on the bandwagon just yet.

Angels 6, Blue Jays 5: Dan Haren gets the win in relief. Really?  Yep: 14 inning games that occur on the day you’re scheduled to do between-starts throwing will do that for a guy. You don’t want to abuse this kind of thing, but I’ve often thought that a team could go with fewer than 12 freaking pitchers on the roster if they were willing to use an offday starter as an emergency bullpen arm. After all, that last arm in the pen doesn’t throw in any given game most of the time. It’s more of a security blanket thing for managers. I’d rather have the extra position player.

Reds 6, Diamondbacks 1: Not as close for most of the game as the Reds scored four in the ninth. Otherwise it was a nice matchup between Bronson Arroyo and Daniel Hudson.

MRI reveals minor right ankle sprain for Cubs’ Kris Bryant

Chicago Cubs' Kris Bryant warms up before Game 3 of the National League baseball championship series against the New York Mets Tuesday, Oct. 20, 2015, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)
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CHICAGO (AP) An MRI has confirmed that Kris Bryant of the Chicago Cubs has a minor right ankle sprain.

The 2015 NL Rookie of the Year wasn’t in the lineup Friday against the Atlanta Braves, but manager Joe Maddon said he might be available off the bench late in the game.

Bryant was injured running the bases in the third inning Thursday of Chicago’s 7-2 victory over the Milwaukee Brewers. He was replaced in left field two innings later.

The Cubs avoided putting another starter on the disabled list. Catcher Miguel Montero was placed on the 15-day DL on Thursday with a sore back. Chicago lost slugger Kyle Schwarber for the season when he tore two knee ligaments three weeks ago in Arizona.

Yasiel Puig welcomes Jared Goff to Los Angeles

Los Angeles Dodgers' Yasiel Puig smiles as he warms up throwing the baseball during a spring training baseball workout Friday, Feb. 26, 2016, in Glendale, Ariz. (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)
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Jared Goff, the University of California Quarterback, was selected by the Los Angeles Rams as the first overall pick of last night’s draft. Not a bad thing to happen, to the man. He’s going to be rich! He’s going to be even more famous! He’s going to be the face of the NFL’s move back into the nation’s second largest city!

The only problem is that he’s not always been a fan of all things Los Angeles. For example, three years ago he took issue with Yasiel Puig for reasons that I’m guessing everyone has forgotten:

But no worries. Puig has both forgotten and forgiven. He even sent out a warm welcome to the new Angelino this afternoon:

#PuigYourFriend has to the best hashtag in the history of Twitter.

 

Someone stole a 14-foot tall Kansas City Royals Player

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Not a real one. If there was a real 14-foot tall baseball player we would’ve heard more about him, I presume. Also, since he’s 14-feet tall and only weighs 150 pounds, he’d probably be in the hospital hooked up to IVs and things because that’s just not healthy.

This is a fake one — a 3D figure — for use on a billboard in Kansas City off of I-435. Thieves came in the night and took him off the sign on Wednesday night. This morning, however, he was found:

And he is home:

Kansas City’s long, little-over-a-day nightmare is over.

(h/t to SB Nation who has a lot more on this)

People are getting hysterical over Dee Gordon’s positive test

FILE - This April 3, 1972 file photo shows Marvin Miller, executive director of the Major League Baseball Players Association, talking to reporters in New York. Miller, the union leader who created free agency for baseball players and revolutionized professional sports with multimillion dollar contracts, died Tuesday, Nov. 27, 2012 in New York. He was 95. (AP Photo/File)
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A dude testing positive for PEDs and getting suspended for 80 games should, actually, be taken as a sign that the system, however imperfect, still largely works. But the world of baseball can’t stop to acknowledge that. No, this is apparently a crisis. A crisis so dire that decades of labor developments apparently need to be scuttled.

That’s the message I’m getting from some folks in baseball media, anyway. Take this for example:

There’s a LOT going on there. For one thing, a casual dismissal of just how massively significant the concept of the guaranteed contract is in baseball. Marvin Miller is always cited as the man who brought the players free agency, but free agency would not have been valuable at all if teams could just void contracts. Just look at how the NFL and its phony salary numbers work. Miller and the MLBPA worked insanely hard to put that system in place and it’s insanely valuable to union membership. It’s not hyperbole to say that any movement on the part of the union to compromise the notion of guaranteed contracts would represent a complete and total repudiation of decades of its own work, and suggesting that it do so because we still get 5-7 PED suspensions a year is preposterous.

Then look at the word “option” there. Abraham wouldn’t have contracts be automatically voided. He’d only have them be voided at the option of an owner. This would give teams tremendous power to get out of bad deals and would give them no risk with respect to PED guys who happen to be on team friendly deals. If contracts were automatically void, underpaid players like Madison Bumgarner would have MASSIVE incentives to use PEDs. If they were merely voidable at the whim of the owner, the owners would have incentives with respect to drug testing other than making the game a clean one.

Finally, note how Abraham puts this all on the MLBPA. He’s not alone in this, as Buster Olney has been tweeting and writing all morning about what the union should and should not be doing to solve this problem. Obviously the union has a huge role as its players are the ones taking drugs, but to suggest that the union be the police force here and that it’s wholly incumbent upon it to solve this problem is silly.

For one thing, as I noted earlier today, a union’s purpose is to protect its members, not police them. To demand that they police them, to the point of undercutting some of their most important protections due to a disciplinary matter, is to turn the concept of a union on its head.

For another thing, as we learned throughout the height of the PED Era, ownership is not totally innocent when it comes to the permeation of PEDs in the game. The people who run baseball play a huge role in shaping the incentive structure of the game which causes some players to cheat. They are thus just as invested in and in just as good a position to help solve the problem at hand as the players are. They cannot, as these reporters would have them, sit back and demand that the MLBPA disembowel itself in order to eliminate PEDs from the game. It has to be a joint effort. Indeed, the drug rules in baseball have the word “JOINT” in the very title. It ain’t a Cheech and Chong reference, I can tell you that.

All of this reveals a certain hysteria that has always permeated the PED discussion in baseball coming to the fore once again. While they once ruled the game, PEDs are a relatively small problem now, comparatively speaking (note: neither Abraham nor Olney bother to establish that they’re actually a big problem or that things are getting worse; they merely assert it and assume it). A problem which, like drugs and cheating in every other walk of life, cannot be wholly eliminated and should not be ignored, but which can be and generally is effectively managed.

Yet here we are with two of the more influential voices in the game — and many others I’ve seen already today but didn’t bother to link here — pushing the panic button and demanding the ridiculous with no basis whatsoever. What is it about this subject, in this sport only, of course, that makes people lose their frickin’ minds?