And That Happened: Tuesday’s scores and highlights

59 Comments

Rangers 10, Orioles 3: Josh Hamilton: four bombs, eight RBI and 18 total bases on a 5 for 5 night.   Every time he does something awesome this year I imagine him muttering something about how dumb it was for Jon Daniels not to talk about a contract extension before the season began.

Yankees 5, Rays 3: Two homers for Raul Ibanez. Which most nights would get him kudos, but we have used up our kudo supply on Josh Hamilton.  In other news, remember those Kudos chocolate covered granola bars? When my brother was in the navy and his ship was sent to the Persian Gulf in late 1990, the Mars Corporation sent an utter ass-load of those Kudos bars to them. They had them all the time every day and they got sick to death of them. Summer 1991 they were back in Norfolk and they had a dependants’ cruise, allowing the families onboard. I went with my parents. They still had tons and tons of Kudos bars, and the sailors were begging everyone to take handfuls of them with us so they could clear out the stock. Rumor was that they’d get better candy bars once those where gone.  I have no idea why I just told you all of this.

Cardinals 6, Diamondbacks 1: A big night for multi-homer games. Carlos Beltran had two and drove in six runs. Like I said, we’re out of kudos. Would you care for a Skor? Or a Whatchamacallit? God, I love Whatchamacallits. Jake Westbrook pitched seven shutout innings. He gets some Necco Wafers. Sorry, I know that sucks, but we’re running out of candy.

Athletics 7, Blue Jays 3: Earlier in the day yesterday I was on a radio show in Toledo that covers the Tigers and we talked about how hilarious it would be if Brandon Inge was a big hero this weekend when the A’s play the Tigers.  Well, he’s warming up: walkoff grand slam. He’s had two straight 4-RBI games.

Pirates 5, Nationals 4: Rod Barajas hit a walkoff two-run homer. Henry Rodriguez was fugly in the ninth: a walk, two wild pitches and then that tater. The fact that the Nats signed Mike Gonzalez yesterday is no accident.

Braves 3, Cubs 1: Hey, on the bright side, the Cubs actually gave Ryan Dempster one run of support. Which is a ton for him. I think they’re gonna see if they can trust him with that and if things go well they may score two runs for him sometime in the near future. No need to go crazy or anything. Braves are tied for first, by the way. And while I watched this whole game, I didn’t focus too hard on the second half because I was busy riffing on Chip Caray on Twitter. I gotta start watching the opponents’ broadcasters so I’m not so distracted with fun pursuits like that.

Mets 7, Phillies 4: Philly jumps out to a 4-0 lead but Joe Blanton didn’t have nearly the mojo last night that he had in his last start. The first four guys in the Mets lineup went 8 for 17 with 5 RBI.

Astros 3, Marlins 2: Houston ends Miami’s seven-game winning streak. All-Star infielder Omar Infante had two errors on one play in the sixth allowing two Houston runs to score.

White Sox 5, Indians 3: Alex Rios tripled home the go-ahead run off Chris Perez in the 10th and scored himself on a subsequent fielder’s choice. Rios has beaten up on Perez quite a bit in recent years.

Twins 5, Angels 0: Scott Diamond had seven shutout innings. The Twins had 12 hits and walked four times.

Royals 6, Red Sox 4: Billy Butler with a big three run homer in the eighth. The AP game story, at least as it was written as of 11:15 PM last night, referred to Butler as the Royals’ “portly designated hitter.”  Which is pretty hilarious and I’ll be sad if they scrubbed it out by this morning.

Brewers 8, Reds 3: Aramis Ramirez his a bases loaded tripe and Ryan Braun had three hits and scored twice.

Giants 2, Dodgers 1: Ryan Vogelsong outuels Clayton Kershaw. Brett Pill’s third inning two-run bomb was all that was needed.

Tigers 6, Mariners 4: Kevin Millwood has to be about done, right? (5 IP, 8 H, 5 ER, 5 BB, 3K). The pen was shaky again, as Jose Valverde walked the bases loaded in the ninth, but this time the Tigers shook loose.

Padres 3, Rockies 1: Comeback story Jeff Suppan wins again. Will Venable doubled and tripled. The Rockies have lost five straight.

Reds sign catcher Tucker Barnhart to a four-year deal

Getty Images
Leave a comment

Mark Sheldon of MLB.com reports that the Reds have signed catcher Tucker Barnhart to a four-year contract extension. The terms: $16 million total, with a $7.5 million club option for the 2022 season that has a $500,000 buyout. He also received a $1.75 million signing bonus.

The deal buys out all three of his arbitration years — he was going to be eligible for the first time this offseason — and the first year of his potential free agency. The club option buys a second. Barnhart made $575,000 this season.

Barnhart, 26, is finishing his second season as the Reds primary catcher. This year he’s hitting .272/.349/.399 with six homers and 42 RBI in 113 games. For his career he has a line of .257/.328/.366 in 330 major league games. His real value is defensive, however. He leads the National League in caught stealing percentage and number of base stealers caught (31-for-70, 44%) and leads all players at any position in the league in defensive WAR according to Baseball-Reference.com.

Dodgers owner Mark Walter is involved in a scandal

Getty Images
Leave a comment

The Dodgers last owner, Frank McCourt, was a mainstay of the gossip pages. The new administration has been pretty drama free since taking over five years ago. That is, until now.

Multiple outlets, ranging from the New York Post to the Wall Street Journal, have been reporting on a scandal brewing at Guggenheim Partners, the multi-billion investment firm led by Mark Walter, its CEO. Walter is also the head of Guggenheim Baseball Management, the offshoot of the firm which owns the Dodgers. Walter is the Dodgers’ named owner — the “control person” — as far as Major League Baseball is concerned.

The scandal does not directly relate to the baseball team. Rather, it involves allegations that Walter bought a $13 million Pacific Palisades home for a younger female executive named Alexandra Court:

In the past 24 hours, the company has pushed back on multiple reports that CEO Mark Walter will step down; its chief investment officer has claimed on CNBC that there’s “no tumult” at the company; and Guggenheim has denied reports on a real-estate blog and in the New York Post that Walter bought a California mansion for a younger female executive at the company.

The denial regarding who bought the mansion is a bit too cute, though, as the company only denies that Walter bought it or owns it. In fact, the mansion is owned by a holding company that also bought Walter’s personal residence in Malibu. Billionaires don’t go to closings at title company offices, of course. They buy houses through companies and LLCs and trusts and stuff. As such, the claim that Walter didn’t buy the house may be technically and legally true but entirely misleading all the same. For what it’s worth, The Wall Street Journal has reported that Walter and Court have a “personal relationship.” Walter, who is married, and the company deny this. Court is on an extended leave of absence.

Walter and Guggenheim are denying that Walter is going to step down as CEO. That remains to be seen. The question for our purposes is whether, if he steps down from Guggenheim Partners, he would necessarily have to step down from Guggenheim Baseball Management and thus relinquish control of the Dodgers. I suspect not — they’re distinct legal entities, and his departure from Partners would be unrelated to stuff having to do with the baseball team — but you never know. It’s not like he put up $2 billion of his personal dollars for the team. There are likely a lot of strings attached and contingencies involved to the arrangement.

Something to watch.