Alex Rodriguez

And That Happened: Tuesday’s scores and highlights

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Yankees 6, Rays 2: Wait, I thought the Yankees’ season was over and everything was doomed, so how does this happen? Two homers for A-Rod, and a two-for-three night for Jorge Posada, who will probably now stick in the seventh spot in the order for a while because, hey, no drama. But since apocalypses apparently aren’t proceeding as planned, I suppose I can make reservations for dinner Saturday night without worrying about anything crazy happening.

Cardinals 2, Phillies 1: Danys Baez loaded the bases in the bottom of the ninth of a 1-1 game and was yanked for J.C. Romero who promptly gave up a walkoff RBI single to Lance Berkman. Fact is, though, that Charlie Manuel has nothing to work with in those situations. There’s no one there, short of using Halladay out of the pen, who you can really count on to get strikeouts in those kinds of situations. And of course, the fact that the Phillies are in those situations have an awful lot to do with the fact that their offense is in a coma, but that’s well-covered territory by now.

Braves 3, Astros 1: Hit it up yesterday. And I can’t wait to see if it’s Yadier Molina, Buster Posey or Geovany Soto who gets more votes for the All-Star Game than Brian McCann. The Brian McCann whose feats yesterday put him in pretty rare company.

Rockies 5, Giants 3: The AP game story calls the Rockies’ three best players the “Big Os — Ubaldo, CarGo and Tulo.”  We really doin’ that?  Anyway, those three all came up big and put the Rockies back on top in the NL West by a half game.

Reds 7, Cubs 5: All of the Reds runs were unearned. And you think Mike Quade was mad after Monday’s game? Here was his quote after this one: “If we haven’t hit rock bottom, we’re pretty damn close.”

White Sox 4, Rangers 3: Texas blew a 3-0 lead and then the winning run scored on a wild pitch.

Indians 7, Royals 3: Well, I guess compared to Monday night this was an improvement, but still, the second-to-worst pitching staff in the AL is not doing anything to stop the best offense in the AL.  Not that this should be a terrible surprise.

Dodgers 3, Brewers 0: Matt Kemp hit a two-run homer in the first and the rest of the game was mere detail.

Diamondbacks 6, Padres 1: “[Eric] Patterson was called out on appeal by third-base umpire Joe West for leaving the bag early, though replays appeared to show Patterson on the base when Upton caught the ball.”  Joe West screwed up a call? Now I’ve seen everything.

Atheltics 14, Angels 0: There was a brief time a couple of years ago in which I kept writing Gio Gonzalez’ name when I was referring to Vin Mazzaro and vice-versa.  I guess confusing that now would be rather silly. Gonzalez shut out the Angels on one hit over seven and the offense asploded. Four RBI for Mark Ellis.

Twins 2, Mariners 1: Francisco Liriano pitches his second best game of the year (7 IP, 3 H, 1 ER, 9K), out dueling Felix Hernandez who had another one of his had-to-be-perfect-but-wasn’t losses.

Marlins vs. Mets; Orioles vs. Red Sox; Pirates vs. Nationals, Blue Jays vs. Tigers: POSTPONED: I’m a-goin’ back out ’fore the rain starts a-fallin’. I’ll walk to the depths of the deepest black forest. Where the people are many and their hands are all empty. Where the pellets of poison are flooding their waters. Where the home in the valley meets the damp dirty prison. Where the executioner’s face is always well hidden. Where hunger is ugly, where souls are forgotten. Where black is the color, where none is the number. And I’ll tell it and think it and speak it and breathe it. And reflect it from the mountain so all souls can see it. Then I’ll stand on the ocean until I start sinkin’. But I’ll know my song well before I start singin’. And it’s a hard, it’s a hard, it’s a hard, it’s a hard … It’s a hard rain’s a-gonna fall.

Rangers avoid arbitration with Mitch Moreland

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First baseman/outfielder Mitch Moreland and the Rangers have avoided arbitration by agreeing to a one-year, $5.7 million deal.

Moreland requested $6 million and the Rangers countered at $4.675 million, so the two sides settled on the player-friendly side of the midpoint.

Moreland bounced back from an injury wrecked 2014 season to have a career-year in 2015, hitting .278 with 23 homers and an .812 OPS in 132 games. Arbitration eligible for the final time at age 30, he’s set to be a free agent next offseason.

Tiger Stadium redevelopment group loses $50K because of its preference for artificial turf

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Craig Calcaterra
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We’ve posted frequently on the topic of the old Tiger Stadium site. If you’ve kept up with it you know that the site, nearly overgrown with weeds and strewn with trash before being rescued by a group of volunteers called the Navin Field Grounds Crew, is now being slated for redevelopment by the Detroit Police Athletic League.

The PAL is committed to keeping a baseball field as part of the development, but they are also, quite unfortunately, committed to putting artificial turf down over the bit of Earth where baseball legends once walked and ran.

Backlash to the plan has begun, however. Not just from people like me or the Navin Field Grounds Crew, who are opposed to fake grass, but to an actual donor to the Detroit Police Athletic League:

With an annual contribution of $50,000 to Detroit PAL’s programs, the Lear Corporation has been a major benefactor of the nonprofit for years. But in light of PAL’s controversial plan to redevelop the Tiger Stadium site with artificial turf, Lear’s CEO is speaking out.

Matthew Simoncini says that Lear is withdrawing its financial support of PAL for its mishandling of this delicate issue.

“I believe the [PAL] plan is severely flawed [and] a terrible use of resources,” says Simoncini. “[It] does not preserve this site and provides [an] unsafe playing surface for the children,”

I’m guessing $50,000 is not the sort of money that will seriously hinder a real estate redevelopment plan, but it’s good to hear someone with a stake in all of this voting with their wallet. Here’s hoping more do and that, eventually, PAL understands that there are some things more important than saving some money at the front end of a project.

Evan Gattis undergoes surgery for hernia; recovery is 4-6 weeks

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Evan Drellich of the Houston Chronicle shares the bad news

One of the Astros’ big bats won’t be taking hacks when the Astros hold their first full workout on Feb. 23.

Astros designated hitter Evan Gattis recently underwent surgery to repair a hernia, the Chronicle has learned, taking away most of his spring training at a minimum. The recovery is four to six weeks but fortunately for Gattis and the Astros, the injury is not considered severe.

Gattis was working hard on his overall conditioning this winter, even telling MLB.com’s Brian McTaggart in late January that he had already dropped 18 pounds. It sounds like the big slugger might have gone a bit overboard with those workouts, and now he is in real danger of missing the first couple weeks of the 2016 regular season.

Gattis batted .246/.285/.463 with 27 home runs and 88 RBI in 153 games last season for the Astros. The 29-year-old is arbitration-eligible for the first time in his career and has a hearing with the Astros scheduled for February 16 to determine his salary for 2016. He requested $3.8 million and was offered $3 million when figures were exchanged a little over three weeks ago.

Suddenly the Astros’ front office might have a new talking point for those arbitrators.

Seung-Hwan Oh finally receives his work visa, will be on time for Cardinals camp

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At last check, new Cardinals reliever Seung-Hwan Oh was still awaiting a work visa from the United States Embassy in South Korea and there was some worry that he might not be able to arrive on time to spring training in Jupiter, Florida.

But that is now officially a non-story.

Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports that Oh has recieved his work visa and is expected to report to Cardinals camp next week along with the rest of the club’s pitchers and catchers. Oh might even show up a bit earlier than the Cardinals originally asked him to, per Goold.

Oh saved 357 games in 11 seasons between Japan’s Nippon Professional Baseball and the Korea Baseball Organization before inking a one-year contract with St. Louis this winter. He also registered a stellar 1.81 ERA and 772 strikeouts across 646 total innings in Asia, earning the nickname “The Final Boss.”

Oh is expected to work in a setup role this year for Cardinals closer Trevor Rosenthal.