Chipper Jones

And That Happened: Wednesday’s Scores and Highlights

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Yes, I’ll get to the Weaver no-hitter in a minute. But it’s already an HBT top story and we have some supporting stuff too.  And besides, there was some clairvoyance going on last night too, and that’s way more rare than a no-no, so first:

Braves 15, Phillies 13:  Dudes, not gonna lie. I turned this game off when it was 5-0 Phillies and Halladay was on the mound because 99% of the time, that’s over.  So instead I chatted online with my girlfriend and watched a couple season 2 episodes of “Louie.”  Including the one with the duckling in Afghanistan which was awesome, right?  Of course.

So, Louie ends and I go to the scoreboard to see how badly the Braves lost and I see that — shock! — it’s 13-13 in the 11th inning.  To the Roku player!  I turn it on and Chipper Jones is batting against Brian Sanches.  This is my chat log with my girlfriend, unedited. Apologies for the language, but it was the heat of the moment:

Me: Holy f**k, what the f**k happened in the Braves game. I started ignoring it when it was 5-0 Phillies. Now it’s 13-13, hahaha
Allison: oh my god  i had no idea??
Me: Looks like the wildest thing ever
Allison: couple of Phillies fans i know havent tweeted much
Me: I’m hoping Chipper hits a walkoff two run homer here
Me: S**t he almost did. Just foul
Allison: haha aw
Allison:  No f*****g way??
Me: I f*****g called that!
Allison: Hahahaha this chat log better make the blog too
Me: Oh yeah

So yeah. I called it. If “hoping” counts as calling it, which I think it does. If not, I at least willed it. Anyway, the Braves’ mostly-dead third baseman is better than your third baseman, so there.

Angels 9, Twins 0: Jered Weaver: no hitter. Drew had the details last night. And yes, it counts even though it came against the Twins.  The best part of it: the lengths to which the Angels broadcasters went to avoid mentioning the fact that he actually had a no-hitter going until the game actually ended. They’re so cute.

Rockies 8, Dodgers 5: Chipper wasn’t the only old man to hit a walkoff homer.  Jason Giambi did too, and his was a three-run job. Carlos Gonzalez hit two homers of his own as Clayton Kershaw was rocked in Denver.

Cardinals 12, Pirates 3: A really nice night for older, often-gimpy players: Carlos Beltran had two homers and seven RBI. Also, there was a kind of beauty in A.J. Burnett’s pitching line. Just the numbers themselves, I mean:  2.2 12 12 12 1 2 2.  I’m assuming Pirates fans feel differently about that.

Cubs 3, Reds 1: You can’t stop Bryan LaHair, you can only hope to contain him. He hit a homer and now sits at .381/.459/.794 on the season with six bombs.

Indians 6, White Sox 3: Johnny Damon lead off, went 0 for 3 and left early with cramping. Didn’t matter, though, because Travis Hafner and Carlos Santana went yard. Adam Dunn hit a homer too.

Rays 5, Mariners 4: James Shields became the first five game winner in the AL, and struck out 11 Mariners. It wasn’t perfect — he gave up four runs in six innings — but he had homers from Sean Rodriguez and Luke Scott backing him. That’s 10 of 11 for the red-hot Rays.

Athletics 4, Red Sox 2: Brandon McCarthy explained after the game how seeing Jarrod Parker tie up the Red Sox the night before helped him visualize success against them last night:

“If anything, it gives you the confidence that you’re not facing a team that scored a bunch of runs,” McCarthy said of watching his teammate’s success the previous game. “When you see someone go out there, throw strike one, with good location, I think it can give you the confidence that it can be done.”

Based on that, I’m taking the hill tonight.  I’ll watch the Parker game three times if I have to. I know I can do it.

Nationals 5, Diamondbacks 4: Ian Desmond hit a walkoff homer. Bryce Harper went 3 for 4 with two doubles and an RBI and made a barehanded catch in the outfield after he stumbled. More importantly, the Nats snapped a five game losing streak. Exciting stuff going down in the District.

Orioles 5, Yankees 0: OK, seriously Orioles, cut it out. The joke has gone on long enough. That “hee hee, look at at compete” thing is starting to make everyone a little nervous, so whenever you’re ready, please return to being the division doormat, OK?  Anyone?  Folks, I’m not sure that they’re listening. Jake Arrieta, eight innings of shutout ball.

Padres 5, Brewers 0: Jeff Suppan won his first game since 2010, shutting out his old team for five innings. I’d call it “The Revenge of Jeff Suppan,” but I’m not sure that the Brewers did anything that warranted vengeance.

Royals 3, Tigers 2: Hit this up yesterday. The Tigers are gonna wake up soon, right?

Blue Jays 11, Rangers 5: Edwin Encarnacion continues to abuse baseballs. He hit a three-run jack — check out how beautiful it was — and Kelly Johnson hit one too. Just as disaster of a series for Texas.

Astros 8, Mets 1: Chris Johnson: two homers, four hits, six RBI. This is the Astros third baseman, by the way. Not the Chris Johnson I went to GW law school with and who was a former colleague of mine back at the Ohio law firm.  Totally different dude.

Marlins 3, Giants 2 : Carlos Zambrano shut out the Giants for seven. And, amazingly, Barry Zito’s new marriage didn’t cause him to maintain his pitching success. He walked seven dudes in three and two-thirds innings and needed over 90 pitches to get that far. But then the ninth inning came and Heath Bell came in and he, once again, didn’t have it, and the Giants tied it up.  Never fear, though: Giancarlo Stanton had it: homer in the 10th to win it.

Yordano Ventura killed in an auto accident

CLEVELAND, OH -  JUNE 2:  Starting pitcher Yordano Ventura #30 of the Kansas City Royals jokes with teammates as he walks off the field after the fifth inning against the Cleveland Indians at Progressive Field on June 2, 2016 in Cleveland, Ohio. (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images)
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Terrible, terrible news: Christian Moreno of ESPN reports that Royals pitcher Yordano Ventura has been killed in an automobile accident in the Dominican Republic. His death has been confirmed by police. He was only 25 years-old. There are as of yet no details about the accident.

Ventura was a four-year veteran, having debuted in 2013 but truly bursting onto the scene for the Royals in 2014. That year he went 14-10 with a 3.20 ERA in 183 innings, ascending to the national stage along with the entire Royals team with some key performances in that year’s ALDS and World Series. The following year Ventura won 13 games for the World Champion Royals and again appeared in the playoffs and World Series.

Ventura was often in the middle of controversy — he found himself in several controversies arising out of his habit of hitting and brushing back hitters — but he was an undeniably electric young talent who was poised to anchor the Royals rotation for years to come. His loss, like that of Jose Fernandez just this past September, is incalculable to both his team, his fans and to Major League Baseball as a whole.

Our thoughts go out to his family, his friends, his teammates and his fans.

Report: Tim Lincecum is not ready for retirement

ANAHEIM, CA - JULY 29:  Tim Lincecum #55 of the Los Angeles Angels during the second inning of the game against the Boston Red Sox at Angel Stadium of Anaheim on July 29, 2016 in Anaheim, California.  (Photo by Jayne Kamin-Oncea/Getty Images)
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Free agent right-hander Tim Lincecum isn’t ready to hang up his cleats just yet. At least, that’s the word from Lincecum’s agent, Rick Thurman, who says the 32-year-old is still “throwing and getting ready for the season” (via Andrew Baggarly of the San Jose Mercury News).

Lincecum may not be ready to enter retirement, but another quote from Thurman suggests that he’ll be picky about where he pitches next. He doesn’t appear open to pitching overseas, and despite not having a contract for 2017 (or even any serious suitors), the right-hander is set on pitching in the big leagues this year. Whether or not he’s willing to take a bullpen role to do so remains to be seen.

While Baggarly predicts some interest in the veteran righty, there’s not much in Lincecum’s recent history to inspire faith in him as a starter, or even a reliever. He picked up a one-year, $2.5 million contract with the Angels following his hip surgery in 2015, and went 2-6 in 2016 with a 9.16 ERA, 5.4 BB/9 and 7.5 SO/9 over 38 1/3 innings. At this point, a minor league contract seems like the surest path back to major league success, though he’s unlikely to find an open spot on the Giants’ or Angels’ rosters anytime soon.