And That Happened: Thursday’s scores and highlights

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Rockies 7, Phillies 1: In yesterday morning’s recaps I slammed Jason Giambi and declared him dead. Last night he hit three homers and drove in seven.  I see my little foray into reverse psychology worked. Don’t thank me now, Jason. Just let me know where to send my bill.

Mets 1, Nationals 0: Sucks to be Livan Hernandez. Oh, wait, Livan Hernandez pitched in this game? Huh. I was just writing basic declarative sentences about the immutable facts of the universe. What a coincidence. Dillon Gee with the two-hit short shutout. Short shutout? Yes, short shutout.

Red Sox 4, Tigers 3: Carl Crawford comes through with a bases loaded single in a tie-game in the bottom of the ninth to give the Sox the win. It’s his third walkoff hit this month.  What, did you think he’d be totally unworthy of his contract forever?

Blue Jays 3, Rays 2: Two solo homers for the Rays vs. a solo and a two-run homer for the Jays. That’s how all game stories would read if we focused less on the individual and more on the collective. Indeed, I intend to present a paper on this very subject in Vienna this fall. It proposes a view of extending expected utility calculations to both individual and group contexts, using several related cases to illustrate the problems inherent in applying expected utility to group choices. It’s all pretty complicated really, what with Prisoner’s Dilemmas and whatnot, so I won’t bore you with it.

Mariners 2, Angels 1: Since the beginning of time man has yearned to destroy the sun. Torii Hunter now more so.

Cardinals 4, Astros 2: Kyle McClellan did not throw a ball three to any of the batters he faced and picked up his sixth win. The whole shebang took 2:15.

Twins 11, Athletics 1: Break up the Twins, winners of three in a row. Two-run homer for Justin Morneau. A big mess of a day for the A’s staff, who lost Tyson Ross after seven measly pitches due to an oblique attack, which is the name I’m giving oblique injuries from here on out so that people will take them more seriously, awareness can be raised and someday — hopefully — a cure can be found.

Pirates 5, Reds 3: The Buccos have taken five of six from Cincinnati. James McDonald gave up one run in six and two-thirds.

Yankees 13, Orioles 2: Brad Bergesen was foolin’ no one, but even if he did manage to fool a few it wouldn’t have mattered because CC Sabathia was on point.

Cubs 5, Marlins 1: A Mike Stanton homer in the eighth was all the Feesh could muster against the Cubs. Starlin Castro had a two-run double in the top of the ninth to give Chicago some breathing room.

White Sox 8, Indians 2: The Chisox jumped all over Fausto Carmona like it was Opening Day or something, scoring six in the first two innings and eight through five.

Royals 2, Rangers 1: This was like an alternate outcome for that Yankees-Orioles game on Wednesday night. Ron Washington sent Derek Holland out to finish the game in the ninth with a 1-0 lead, but he allowed the first hitter he faced to reach so Washington yanked him for Neftali Feliz. Feliz got a couple outs but allowed a single, then uncorked a wild pitch (note: the word “uncorked” can only be used in connection with wild pitches in much the same way “ensuing” can only be used with kickoffs) and then a game-tying single to Mike Aviles. Into extras we go where Jeff Francoeur was the hero, hitting the game-winning RBI in the bottom of the 10th.

Diamondbacks 2, Braves 1: Josh Collmenter has thrown 21 consecutive scoreless innings. And holy moley, if you haven’t seen him pitch, check out his motion. The Braves, of course, couldn’t hit pitches thrown by a Meatball3000-model pitching machine set to “pansy” right now.

Padres 1, Brewers 0: The signature game of 2011 so far: a 1-0 contest decided by a sacrifice fly in the bottom of the ninth.

Giants 3, D0dgers 1: Madison Bumgarner finally wins a game, pitching a shutout until two outs in the ninth. Brian Wilson came in to get the last out of the game, but he made it interesting, walking two guys first.

J.D. Martinez tells teams he prefers an outfield role

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Free agent outfielder/slugger J.D. Martinez is reportedly seeking an outfield gig, says Michael Silverman of the Boston Herald. According to Silverman’s sources, Martinez’s suitors have been informed that the veteran slugger would give preference to teams that can offer a corner outfield spot, rather than a DH-only role.

That could spell trouble for the Red Sox, who appear to be Martinez’s biggest suitors so far this offseason. Outfielders Mookie Betts and Andrew Benintendi are firmly established at the corners, and prior reports from club president Dave Dombrowski suggest that center fielder Jackie Bradley Jr. is not going anywhere anytime soon (thereby eliminating the possibility of reshuffling the outfield). The DH spot is still wide open for Martinez, who doesn’t seem to be totally closed off to the idea, but any full-time or part-time role on the field is likely off the table at this point.

Of course, the Red Sox aren’t the only ones pursuing Martinez’s services this winter. The 30-year-old slugger has been linked to both the Diamondbacks and Giants in weeks past, and while they have the roster flexibility to accommodate his preferences, they’ll need to clear another massive hurdle: the seven-year, $250 million contract he’s said to be seeking. Both clubs will need to get creative to make such a deal work. The Diamondbacks are rumored to be shopping right-hander Zack Greinke in an attempt to free up some room on their payroll for Martinez, while the Giants appear more inclined to scour the trade market for outfield help than shell out cash for another hefty contract in free agency.