Miguel Cairo retires, joins Reds front office

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Miguel Cairo is retiring after a 17-year career, but he’s staying with the Reds and moving into the front office as a special assistant to general manager Walt Jocketty.

That makes sense, because Cairo was seemingly beloved by every manager and general manager he ever played for, which is how you play 17 seasons in the majors while hitting .264 with a .675 OPS despite not having the range to even play shortstop.

Cairo had two of his best seasons for the Reds in 2010 and 2011, topping a .725 OPS in back-to-back years for the only time, but he hit just .187 last season at age 38.

Considering his limitations as a player 17 seasons, 4,392 plate appearances, and $10 million in earnings was a helluva career for Cairo.

Chris Archer threw behind Jose Bautista

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Rays starter Chris Archer threw his first pitch to Blue Jays outfielder Jose Bautista behind the slugger’s back with one out in the first inning of Sunday afternoon’s game in Toronto. Bautista and Archer then had a staredown. Home plate umpire Jim Wolf issued warnings to both teams. Bautista ultimately flied out to right field and he appeared to have a quick word with Archer on his way back to the dugout.

Archer could have been exacting revenge — euphemistically known as “protecting his teammate” — because Jays reliever Joe Biagini hit Rays outfielder Steven Souza in the seventh inning of Saturday’s game. Souza was forced to leave the game and underwent an X-ray, which came back negative. He was held out of Sunday’s lineup. Biagini’s pitch did not appear to be intentional.

The Jays won Sunday’s contest 3-1 with no further incident. The two clubs meet again in Tampa for a three-game series starting on May 5, so we’ll see if Sunday was the last of the bad blood between them.

Bryce Harper sets April record for runs scored

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With four runs scored during Sunday’s 23-5 drubbing of the Mets, Nationals outfielder Bryce Harper set a new April record for runs scored at 32, MLB.com’s Oliver Macklin reports. The record was previously held by Larry Walker, who scored 29 runs for the Rockies in April 1997.

Harper finished 2-for-4 with a pair of walks and a solo home run (off of Mets catcher Kevin Plawecki) on the afternoon. He’s now hitting .391/.509/.772 with nine home runs and 26 RBI on the year.