Nyjer Morgan

Brewers beat Diamondbacks in 10, advance to NLCS

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8:49 p.m.update: Nyjer Morgan singled in Carlos Gomez with one out to advance the Brewers to the NLCS.

Gomez singled off J.J. Putz and stole second to get into scoring position before Morgan hit a groundball single up the middle. Chris Young’s throw from center field wasn’t nearly in time.

8:40 p.m. update: Axford rebounded from his poor ninth to retire the Diamondbacks in order in the 10th. Craig Counsell, Carlos Gomez and Nyjer Morgan due up for Milwaukee.

8:32 p.m. update: We’re going to extra innings. David Hernandez has retired all six Brewers he’s faced.

Paul Goldschmidt, Chris Young and the pitcher’s spot are due up for the Diamondbacks in the 10th. Lyle Overbay figures to hit for Hernandez unless it’s a bunting situation.

8:28 p.m. update: Poor Jerry Hairston. He was robbed by Chris Young on his bid for a two-run double in the sixth and he just cranked another to left-center that was grabbed by Gerardo Parra.

8:25 p.m. update: Blanco grounds out to end the top of the ninth with the score tied 2-2. It was pretty impressive the way Axford bounced back, particularly after he botched the squeeze bunt.

Worth remembering now: the Brewers have taken out their third- and fourth-best hitters for defense. Corey Hart and Rickie Weeks were replaced by Carlos Gomez and Craig Counsell.

Jerry Hairston Jr., Yuniesky Betancourt and Jonathan Lucroy are due up against David Hernandnez in the bottom of the ninth.

8:23 p.m. update: Upton taps out to Axford. Now it’s Henry Blanco up after the Diamondbacks chose to run for Miguel Montero with two outs in the eighth.

8:20 p.m. update: Axford finally gets his first out, striking out Aaron Hill. Justin Upton up.

8:17 p.m. update: A Willie Bloomquist safety squeeze ties it up. Even bigger, no out was recorded on the play after Axford got in Prince Fielder’s way, giving the Diamondbacks two on with none out.

The Brewers were 81-1 when leading after eight innings this season.

8:16 p.m. update: Burroughs pulled back the bunt and flared a 3-2 pitch into shallow right. Runners on first and third, no outs.

8:12 p.m. update: Previously hitless in 17 at-bats for the series, Gerardo Parra took John Axford’s first pitch of the ninth into right-center for a double. This is getting good.

Sean Burroughs is in looking to drop down a bunt.

8:10 p.m. update: Diamondbacks reliever David Hernandez retired Ryan Braun, Prince Fielder and Rickie Weeks in order in the eighth, so it’s 2-1 Brewers headed to the ninth.

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Francisco Rodriguez loaded the bases in the top of the eighth before getting Ryan Roberts to groundout to end the inning. The Brewers will take at least a 2-1 lead into the top of the ninth in Game 5 of the NLDS against the Diamondbacks.

While K-Rod was shaky right from the start — he walked Aaron Hill to start the inning — Brewers manager Ron Roenicke never moved to warm up closer John Axford or anyone else in the Milwaukee pen. Rodriguez gave up a single to Miguel Montero with one out and walked Chris Young to load the bases with two outs, but he appeared in control while dealing to Roberts. Roberts guessed fastball on the first pitch and got the slider. He was then late on a fastball on the second pitch, and pitch No. 3 was a routine grounder for an easy out.

The Brewers will turn to Axford in the ninth. Due up are Gerardo Parra, Sean Burroughs and Willie Bloomquist. Parra is hitless today and 0-for-17 in the series.

Indians sign Brandon Guyer to a two-year extension

CLEVELAND, OH - NOVEMBER 02:  Brandon Guyer #6 of the Cleveland Indians celebrates Rajai Davis #20 two-run home run during the eighth inning to tie the game 6-6 against the Chicago Cubs in Game Seven of the 2016 World Series at Progressive Field on November 2, 2016 in Cleveland, Ohio.  (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
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The Cleveland Indians and outfielder Brandon Guyer avoided arbitration by agreeing to a two-year contract with a club option for 2019.

The Indians acquired Guyer from the Rays at last year’s trade deadline. After coming to Cleveland he posted a line of .333/.438/.469 in 38 games. He’s a .262/.349/.402 hitter over 344 games in five seasons in the bigs. He has led the league in being hit by pitches for the past two seasons, getting plunked 24 times in 2015 and 31 times in 2016. He went 6-for-18 with four walks and two HBPs in the playoffs for Cleveland. The man will work to get on base, my friends. And he can play all three outfield positions.

Nice signing.

Sarasota County to build the Braves a new spring training facility

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The Braves have trained at Walt Disney World for several years. The lease is up, however, and they’ve been on the hunt for a new facility for some time. Disney is just too geographically remote from most of the Grapefruit League facilities so they’ve looked on both the Atlantic and Gulf coasts for some time.

Their search appears to be over, however, as they have reached an agreement to move to Sarasota:

The Atlanta Braves formally plan to move the team’s spring training home to North Port in 2019, the team and Sarasota County announced Tuesday afternoon.

The announcement set the stage for final negotiations this spring on a contract to bring the Major League Baseball team to a new complex in the West Villages district just south of West Villages Parkway and U.S. 41, near the State College of Florida campus in North Port.

It’ll be a $75-$80 million complex on 70 acres. The story says it’s envisioned to anchor a “town center” commercial and residential district. If anyone has ever been to a spring training facility, however, one knows how ridiculous such an idea is. There is nothing more geographically un-centered and dispersed than a spring training facility. It’s a sea of open fields which private citizens generally cannot access and large parking lots. These facilities typically require major arteries, not quaint town streets, for reasonable access. The best any facilities do to integrate with surrounding communities can be seen in Fort Myers with the Twins and in Surprise, Arizona with the Rangers and Royals, where the facilities are part of larger community parks and recreation centers. That’s OK, and certainly better than nothing, but they’re not the anchors of the vibrant live/work/shop developments like the Braves and Sarasota are describing here.

But of course everyone involved has to say that, because selling such facilities as the engine of pie-in-the-sky development is a key part of making the large expenditure of public funds seem more palatable. And yes, there will be a big expenditure of public funds here: the Braves will be getting $56 million in taxpayer subsidies for the new place, some from the state, some from the county. The amount from the county, by the way, is calculated to fall just below the threshold required for a public vote on the expenditure. The Braves have always been blessed with the ability to avoid public votes for their corporate welfare, of course.

One wonders how many other wealthy private businesses owned by multinational corporations get tens of millions in tax dollars to build employee training centers. Not many, I’m sure. The Braves always seem to luck out in this regard, however.