Andre Ethier backs off the “the Dodgers are making me play hurt” stuff

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On Saturday Andre Ethier was quoted as complaining about the Dodgers putting him in the lineup despite his injuries. His quote in the T.J. Simers column: “… as the season goes on my body wears down. That’s just the way it is — I keep getting put in the lineup, so what am I supposed to do?”

Before yesterday’s game, however, he had a somewhat different take on things:

“It’s always been my choice to keep playing and keep going. They’ve never said, ‘We don’t think you can or you can’t play.’ It’s always been they’ve said, ‘Hey, you’ve obviously put up with this and it’s at your discretion.'”

Well I guess that’s all settled then.  In other news, the political candidate has always been clear and consistent about Issue X, that band that was awesome 15 years ago is confident that their latest album is the best thing they’ve ever done and that celebrity couple’s breakup was “amicable” and they remain the best of friends.

Report: Derek Jeter-Jeb Bush group is the last one standing to purchase the Marlins

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There are a couple of confusing and potentially conflicting reports swirling about the Miami Marlins sale right now.

When last we heard, there were two high-profile groups with reported interest. One run by Hall of Famer Derek Jeter and politician Jeb Bush. The other run by Hall of Famer Tom Glavine and . . . son of politician, Tagg Romney.

Today Scott Soshnick of Bloomberg reported that the Jeter-Bush group has “won the auction” for the team. Mike Ozanian of Forbes reported earlier in the day, however, that they haven’t “won” anything. They merely remain the last group standing and that they have submitted a “non-binding indication of interest,” which, as the name suggests, means very little formally. They’re still seeking funding sources. Ozanian reports that the Glavine-Romney team is out.

That’s all a bit confusing, but given how team sales tend to go — slowly, with pretty established and plugged-in sports business types deliberately reporting the progress of negotiations — Ozanian’s report feels a bit more credible. Either way, I’d say it’s way, way too early to photoshop a Marlins cap on old pictures of Derek Jeter just yet

The first native Lithuanian in MLB history made his debut last night

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Why yes, it is a slow news day. But let’s not allow that to take away from some MLB history.

Last night a young man named Dovydas Neverauskas pitched in mopup duty for the Pirates, who were getting hammered by the Cubs. Mr. Neverauskas pitched two innings, allowing one run, making him, by default, the most effective pitcher the Pirates sent out there last night.

That’s good, but that’s not what makes it historic. What makes it historic is that Neverauskas is the first person born and raised in Lithuania to make the Majors. Here’s some back story on him from last year’s Futures Game.

Lithuania is known for producing basketball players. Now it has its first major leaguer. Whether he becomes baseball’s Arvydas Sabonis is an open question.