So did anyone come close to the Rangers’ bid for Darvish, or not?

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Yesterday we heard that the Toronto Blue Jays came really close to the Rangers’ $51.7 million bid for Yu Darvish.  As the day wore on into night, however, multiple reports surfaced suggesting that, no, the Jays didn’t bid that high and that in fact no team came anywhere close to what the Rangers’ bid.

I’ll accept that, I suppose. But I also can’t help but wonder if it serves a team’s interest to say such a thing after the fact, even if it isn’t true.  Bid close and lose on a guy like Darvish and someone may accuse you of not having the guts to go the extra mile. Of miscalculating or something.  Put the word out there that you were nowhere near the Rangers’ bid, however, and maybe a narrative is created in which the Rangers clearly overbid and, my, aren’t we wise for not being so silly with our money.

I’m not married to that explanation. I can see that it may cut in a couple of different directions. I just think it’s always smart to be somewhat critical when multiple reports related to information we can’t possibly know from other sources comes out.  For every leak, there’s an agenda, even if it’s a small and benign one.

The Angels were the first team to use up all of their mound visits

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Last night’s Angels-Astros game was a long affair with a bunch of homers and the use of 11 pitchers in all. The Angels used six pitchers and all of that business led to plenty of conferences. Six, in fact, which is their allotment under the new rule capping mound visits. As far as I can tell, that makes the Angels the first team to use up all of their mound visits since the advent of the rule.

Sadly, they did not try to go for a seventh, thereby testing the currently unknown limits of the rule. Umpires have been instructed to not allow additional mound visits, but they cannot issue balls or tackle anyone or anything to enforce it. Presumably, if Maldonado had walked out to talk to Cam Bedrosian about the weather or where he was going to dinner after the game, the home plate umpire would’ve simply done the old Robin Williams English policeman’s bit of yelling “Stop! . . . or I shall yell ‘Stop!’ again!” Maybe a fine would issue later, but we’ll never know.

At least until someone breaks the limit. And we know someone will, right? We should have a betting pool on who does it.