Justin Verlander loses bid to match Vander Meer in the sixth

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8:32 p.m. EDT: Melky Cabrera broke up the bid with two outs in the sixth.  After Alcides Escobar walked with one out, Chris Getz hit a grounder that likely would have been an inning-ending double-play ball, except for that Escobar was off with the pitch.

Verlander then left a changeup up to Cabrera, who pounded into the gap to score Escobar.  It broke up an 0-for-49 string for the league against the right-hander.

9:35 p.m. EDT: Verlander ended up allowing two hits over eight innings in a 3-1 victory.  Jose Valverde cleaned up in the ninth.  Verlander struck out seven in a 105-pitch outing.  He improved to 4-3 with a 2.91 ERA.

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Justin Verlander, bidding to become just the second pitcher ever to throw back-to-back no-hitters, is through five hitless in his start against the Royals.

Verlander has struck out three and walked one.  He’s thrown 61 pitches with the Tigers up 3-0 and retired 12 straight after walking Billy Butler to begin the second inning.

Braves sign David Hernandez

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Bill Whitehead of the Atlanta Journal Constitution reports that the Braves have signed reliever David Hernandez to a minor league contract on Sunday. He’ll report to spring training as a non-roster invitee.

Hernandez, who turns 32 years old in May, signed a minor league contract with the Giants in February. He requested and was granted his release on Friday when he learned he wasn’t making the team’s 25-man roster to open the season.

Hernandez pitched for the Phillies last year. He compiled a 3.84 ERA with an 80/32 K/BB ratio in 72 2/3 innings.

Dave Roberts: It “doesn’t make sense” for Scott Kazmir to start year in Dodgers’ rotation

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Scott Kazmir won’t begin the regular season in the Dodgers’ starting rotation. Manager Dave Roberts said after Kazmir’s Cactus League outing on Sunday that it “doesn’t make sense” for the ailing Kazmir to break camp in the rotation, Andy McCullough of the Los Angeles Times reports. The lefty will instead rehab some more and join the rotation at a later time.

Kazmir has been battling a hip issue which has caused his mechanics to suffer. He was clocked in the low 80’s 10 days ago and wasn’t much better on Sunday afternoon.

Last season with the Dodgers, Kazmir posted a 4.56 ERA with a 134/52 K/BB ratio in 136 1/3 innings, his worst numbers since returning to the majors in 2013.