Braves pick up Jeff Baker from Tigers for PTBN

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The Braves have acquired Baker from the Tigers for a player to be named. Since the move is becoming official tonight, he’ll be eligible for the team’s postseason roster. Baker has hit .254/.293/.408 with four homers and 24 RBI in 169 at-bats for the Cubs and Tigers this season. He’ll provided a little right-handed pop off an Atlanta bench that is short of it.

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Less than a month after acquiring Jeff Baker from the Cubs the Tigers have designated the veteran role player for assignment.

Detroit sent a pair of players to be named later to Chicago for Baker on August 5, hoping he could provide some corner outfield/third base depth and solid production versus left-handed pitching.

Instead he got all of 37 plate appearances, went 7-for-35 (.200) with zero homers, and is now off the 40-man roster in favor of Double-A call-up Avisail Garcia.

Martin Maldonado and Willson Contreras say they’re willing to pay fines rather than follow new mound visit rule

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On Monday, Major League Baseball announced some changes aimed at improving the game’s pace of play, something that has been a pet cause for commissioner Rob Manfred. Among the changes was a limit on mound visits whether from managers and coaches, the catcher, or other defenders. Each team will have six non-pitching change mound visits per game and one additional visit each inning in extra innings. Craig wrote more in depth on the changes here if you happened to miss it.

Angels catcher Martin Maldonado says he is going to do what’s necessary to stay on the same page with his pitchers. Via Jeff Fletcher of the Orange County Register, Maldonado said, “If the game is on the line, I’m going to go out there. If we’re at six [visits], and it’s going to be the seventh, I’m going to go out there, even if I have to pay a fine. I’m there for the pitchers.”

Cubs catcher Willson Contreras said as much on Tuesday. Per Josh Frydman of WGN News, Contreras said, “What about if you have a tight game and you have to go out there? They can’t say anything about that, that’s my team and we just care about wins. If they’re going to fine me about number seven mound visit, I’ll pay the price.”

Exhibition games haven’t even started yet, but two notable backstops — the lesser-known Maldonado won a Gold Glove last year — are clearly not happy with the rule change. As Craig alluded to in his article yesterday, arguments between catchers and umpires (and, subsequently, managers and umpires) are probably going to become more frequent, which would likely end up nullifying any pace of play improvements.