Anibal Sanchez exits start in the fourth inning

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Tigers starterAnibal Sanchez was taken out of tonight’s game against the Twins after three and two-thirds innings due to a shoulder injury, reports Chris Iott. The Tigers had skipped Sanchez’s turn in the rotation last week, making manager Jim Leyland anxious to see his right-hander perform tonight. It didn’t go well, as Sanchez allowed two runs on five hits and an uncharacteristic four walks.

Iott describes Sanchez’s struggles:

The Twins had a runner on and one out in the fourth when Trevor Plouffe ripped a home run an estimated 415 feet to left field to tie the score at 2-2. After Sanchez issued a two-out walk to Brian Dozier, Leyland made a rare trip to the mound that did not result in a pitching change.

But Sanchez threw just one more pitch. Pedro Florimon singled to center to put runners at first and third. After Alex Avila and Sanchez met at the mound and dragged their feet a bit, Leyland returned to the mound and replaced Sanchez with left-hander Darin Downs.

As of right now, there are no indications that Sanchez was lifted due specifically to the shoulder injury, or simply because he performed poorly.

Umpire ejects Adrian Beltre for moving on-deck circle

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As far as ejections go, this is one of the stranger ones you’ll hear about. Rangers third baseman Adrian Beltre was ejected in the bottom of the eighth inning of a game his team trailed at the time 18-6. Beltre was a few feet away from the circle towards home plate and was asked by Marlins pitcher Drew Steckenrider to get into the circle. So rather than step a few feet back to his right, Beltre picked up the circle and dragged it to where he was. And that got him ejected by second base umpire Gerry Davis. Manager Jeff Banister was also ejected after having a word with Davis.

Here’s a video from Jeff Passan of Yahoo Sports:

Beltre, by the way, went 3-for-3 with a walk, a pair of doubles, and a solo home run. He’s now four hits away from 3,000 for his career.

Video: Phillies prospect J.P. Crawford hits an inside-the-park grand slam

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Phillies shortstop prospect J.P. Crawford’s stock has fallen sharply this season. He had an abysmal first three months, batting .203/.321/.276 in 291 plate appearances. Baseball America rated him the 12th overall prospect in baseball going into the season and rated him No. 92 in their midseason top 100. It was bad.

Since the calendar turned to July, however, Crawford has been more like his normal self. In 92 at-bats this month entering Wednesday night’s action, he was hitting .300/.391/.650 with six home runs, 13 RBI, 18 runs scored, and a terrific 15/12 K/BB ratio.

Crawford padded his stats more on Wednesday night as he circled the bases for an inside-the-park grand slam. Via the IronPigs Twitter:

Crawford was actually dead-to-rights at home, but he fooled the catcher with a great late slide.

Crawford finished 1-for-3 with a walk along with the slam on the night as the IronPigs beat the Gwinnett Braves 8-2.