Philadelphia Phillies v New York Mets

And That Happened: Sunday’s scores and highlights

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Mets 5, Phillies 0: It’s getting close to the time for us to break out all of that “we are all witnesses” kind of hyperbole for Matt Harvey. Not that it’s really hyperbole. He’s simply toying with hitters at this point, throwing ungodly stuff in just about every count. Seven innings, three hits, ten strikeouts, no walks and if it wasn’t for the heat he wouldn’t have broken a sweat.

Brewers 1, Marlins 0: Caleb Gindl with the walkoff homer in the 13th. Not gonna lie: never heard of that dude before I clicked this box score. If you had asked me who Caleb Gindel was yesterday afternoon I would’ve guessed that he was lawful-good ranger in some D&D campaign involving some high school kids which has been going on for about a year or so. The kid who plays the ranger isn’t that into it, but he’s crushing hard on the girl who plays the halfling magic user so he plays every week. Sad part for poor Caleb is that no matter how much he tries to protect her, she’s really into the DM. You know, that kid who just got big into Society for Creative Anachronism and is making his own armor and stuff? And the worst part is, that kid sees all of this and tailors the campaign in such a way as to make Caleb look like a yutz at every turn. And he’s not even into the halfling! He’s just being a dick. All I’m saying is that it’s complicated. And that, um, I have no experience with anything like this whatsoever. Nope. Anyway: it’s now been 11 days since I’ve written an ATH in which I had to put a number next to the Marlins score. OK, that’s a bit misleading as they did score runs during the weekend before the All-Star break, but man, they are rolling 1s and 2s when attacking and are missing all of their saving throws.

Rays 4, Blue Jays 3: A three game sweep for the Rays whose roll was not disrupted by the All-Star break one bit. Homers for Luke Scott, Evan Longoria and Kelly Johnson. Tampa Bay has won 13 of 14 and now face the Sox with first place in the AL East on the line.

White Sox 3, Braves 1: Lots of leather here. Casper Wells robbed Reed Johnson of a homer in the eighth. Jeff Keppinger had a diving stop. Johnson smacked a liner that was snagged by Alexi Ramirez, who doubled off Brian McCann. Tons of missed chances and stranded runners for the Braves. Tons of nice plays for the Sox, who took two of three.

Pirates 3, Reds 2: Weird aggregate pitching lines: Pirates pitchers allowed only three hits but they walked seven. Meanwhile Homer Bailey struck out 12 in six and a third yet got the loss. It’s the last time the Reds and Pirates meet until September. They finish the year playing six of their last nine against each other.

Tigers 4, Royals 1: I watched Miguel Cabrera hit his first inning homer off James Shields. It’s cute how pitchers think they can bust him inside. But you know what? You really can’t. He just pulls his hands in and jacks that mother. There’s really no one like him in that regard in the game right now. Tigers avoid the sweep.

Dodgers 9, Nationals 2: Matt Kemp came back off the DL, kicked some butt, hitting a homer, a double and driving in three, got hurt on the base paths and my guess is that he’ll go back on the DL. I imagine 50 years from now they’ll be calling that “pulling a Matt Kemp.” Dodgers sweep the Nats.

Indians 7, Twins 1: Justin Masterson took a no-hitter into the seventh, having faced the minimum (his one baserunner was a hit batsmaen who was then caught stealing). A bloop single broke it up but such is the way of the world.

Mariners 12, Astros 5: The M’s are hot, having won six in a row. Nick Franklin hit a grand slam and Felix Hernandez did Felix Hernandez things (6 IP, 4 H, 0 ER, 7K).

Cardinals 3, Padres 2: Adam Wainwright went eight innings and picked up his 13th win. I looked at the box score for this game and noticed that the lineup Mike Matheny used yesterday had OBP’s of .399, .384, .376, .346, .359 in the 1-5 slots.

Athletics 6, Angels 0: Per ESPN: Bartolo Colon is the first pitcher over the age of 40 to have more than one shutout in a season since Randy Johnson did it in 2004. Per a Twitter search for “Bartlo Colon steroids” people on Twitter aren’t all that impressed. No matter: dude is on pace for 21 wins and 225 innings pitched.

Diamondbacks 3, Giants 1: The Dbacks avoid the sweep — holding off an error-and-infield-single-driven would-be ninth inning rally by the Giants — and just barely hold on to their lead in the NL West.

Rockies 4, Cubs 3: Tyler Chatwood tossed six decent innings. Nolan Arenado drove in the go-ahead run on a sixth inning single and an insurance run scored on the same play via a throwing error.

Orioles 4 vs. Rangers 2: I talked to Chris Tillman for a bit at the All-Star Game. No other media member was talking to him. I asked him if he was cool with more or less being ignored. He said “Yep, that’s good for me. I like it that way just fine.” Here he allowed two runs in eight innings and got the win. And probably had to answer questions about that from the press, the poor sod.

Red Sox 8, Yankees 7: Mike Napoli with a walkoff homer in the 11th. It was bookended with his three-run shot in the third. The Yankees can take a moral victory away having scored seven runs, right? No? Eh, well, OK. But it was something seeing them score seven runs.

And That Happened: Thursday’s scores and highlights

New York Yankees relief pitcher Johnny Barbato, right, walks off the field after being relieved in the tenth inning of a baseball game against the Baltimore Orioles in Baltimore, Thursday, May 5, 2016. Baltimore won 1-0 in ten innings. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)
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Here are the scores. Here are the highlights:

Orioles 1, Yankees 0: Kevin Gausman didn’t even break as sweat, allowing three hits in eight shutout innings. He got the no-decision, though, as the he, Masahiro Tanaka and relievers traded zeros through regulation. In the 10th, however, the Orioles broke through against Johnny Barbato and Andrew Miller. One wonders if they break through at all, however, if Miller starts the inning rather than comes in with runners on the corer and no one out. Barbato is a rookie with little experience and in that experience he has has demonstrated some pretty ineffective pitching. The Yankees have been stinkin’ up the joint, Miller is one of the best relievers in baseball and he had pitched just once in the previous five days. For the Yankees to go with Barbato there, when a single run means a loss, than Miller, is insanity. The old “don’t use your closer in a tie game on the road” thing was no doubt in play there, but for as conventional as that is, it is not wisdom. It’s the delegation of logic. It’s asking the manager to forget who his pitchers are and what his larger situation is (i.e. the Yankees NEED to win some games right now) in order to adhere to some stupid convention with less than a couple of decades of venerability. The Orioles won this game, but calcified thinking lost it.

Padres 5, Mets 3: Colin Rea pitched no-hit ball into the seventh before Yoenis Cespedes drove a ground ball single to right field with two outs. The hit came as a result of Cespedes going the other way against the shift. I’m assuming some people will say shifts suck because if there wasn’t one here Rea might’ve pitched a no-hitter, but the game story notes that the no-hit bid was extended by the shift several times. In other news, shift politics rather bore me. Hit doubles and homers and you don’t need to worry about shifts. They take away singles. Not much else.

Marlins 4, Diamondbacks 0: The Marlins have won 10 of 11 games. Five have come against bad teams, but what most people forget is that good teams winning a lot of games against bad teams is a huge part of why they’re good teams. I’m not sure if I’m mentally prepared for the Marlins to be a good team in 2016, but here we are.

Cubs 5, Nationals 2: Good teams beat a lot of bad teams. SUPER good teams beat other good teams too. The Nats are good. The Cubs are SUPER good and they cruise in a matchup between the NL’s two best so far. Kyle Hendricks pitched six scoreless innings and Ben Zobrist drove in four runs. Every team slumps at times and as a franchise the Cubs have been know to swoon, but this sure as hell feels different to me. These guys are fantastic.

Red Sox 7, White Sox 3: Sox win! Dustin Pedroia, Hanley Ramirez and Jackie Bradley Jr. all homered. The Sox have won nine of 11. Pedroia is looking like vintage Pedroia. This is another matchup of two good teams. One of ’em took two of three from the other, making them gooder right now.

Indians 9, Tigers 4: Michael Brantley was 4-for-5 with three RBI and Mike Napoli had a three-run homer. In other news, I had this exchange at about 9:30 last night with a Tigers fan friend of mine:

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Cardinals 4, Phillies 0: Brandon Moss hit a homer that they judged to be 462 feet. That would make it the fourth longest by anyone on the season. The previous long homers: Nolan Arenado, 471 feet, Sean Rodriguez, 468, and Byung Ho Park, 466. Home run measuring remains something of an inexact science but that’s pretty rad. Meanwhile, Jaime Garcia pitches seven two-hit shutout innings.

Blue Jays 12, Rangers 2: Edwin Encarnacion homered, doubled twice and drove in six runs. Is that good? I feel like that’s pretty good.

Reds 9, Brewers 5Jay Bruce hit a three-run homer and Alfredo Simon made it through seven effective innings and two-thirds of a not-so-effective one. Maybe he ran out of gas in the eighth when he allowed a two-run homer before leaving, but with the Reds’ bullpen stinkin’ like it stinks, you stretch a guy if you can. The pen came in and allowed another couple of runs in the ninth, but you know the old saying “you don’t lose often when you score nine runs and you’re playing Milwaukee even if your bullpen is a friggin’ train wreck.” I think Joe McCarthy said that.

 

Mariners 6, Astros 3: It was tied at three in the ninth when Luke Gregerson loaded up the bases and Robinson Cano cleared them off with a three-run double. A rare good start from an Astros’ stater is again wasted by the Houston pen. But sure, Carlos Gomez is the issue here.

Rockies 17, Giants 7: Remember yesterday when I said that the back end of the Giants rotation was bad? I should’ve said it was a tire fire in a sulfur mine. Matt Cain, who is clearly not right, allowed eight runs, six earned, on ten hits in four innings. The Rockies scored 13 runs in the fifth inning, which Cain started but couldn’t finish. Cain and Jake Peavy may be famous, but they’re killing San Francisco right now. In other news, Tim Lincecum will throw his little showcase for teams in Arizona later this morning. If the Giants aren’t at least thinking about getting back together with their old flame something is wrong.

Colin Rea loses no-hit bid in the seventh against the Mets

San Diego Padres starting pitcher Colin Rea works against a Pittsburgh Pirates batter during the first inning of a baseball game Tuesday, April 19, 2016, in San Diego. (AP Photo/Gregory Bull)
AP Photo/Gregory Bull
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Update (12:01 AM EDT): And it’s over. Yoenis Cespedes drove a ground ball single to right field with two outs in the seventh inning to end Rea’s no-hit bid.

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Padres starter Colin Rea has tamed the hot-hitting Mets lineup so far this Thursday night. The right-hander has walked only one, the lone batter above the minimum he has faced. Rea has also struck out three while accumulating 76 pitches.

The Padres’ offense provided Rea with five runs of support, scoring once in each of the first, second, and third, as well as twice in the sixth. Wil Myers smacked a solo homer off of Jacob deGrom in the first inning. Rea helped himself with an RBI single in the second, Alexei Ramirez brought in a run with a double in the third, Derek Norris drove a solo homer in the sixth, and Jon Jay shortly thereafter hit an RBI double.

The Mets entered play Thursday tied for the National League lead in home runs hit as a team with 40. Rea, meanwhile, came into Thursday’s action with a 4.61 ERA and a 22/13 K/BB ratio in 27 1/3 innings spanning five starts and one relief appearance.

If Rea is able to complete the job, he would become the first pitcher in Padres history to throw a no-hitter. Jake Arrieta threw the first no-hitter of the 2016 season on April 21 against the Reds.

We’ll keep you updated as Rea attempts to navigate through the final three innings.

Jason Heyward hopes to return to Cubs’ lineup on Friday

Chicago Cubs' Jason Heyward hits a double to drive in Dexter Fowler off Cincinnati Reds relief pitcher J.J. Hoover during the ninth inning of a baseball game, Friday, April 22, 2016, in Cincinnati. The Cubs won 8-1. (AP Photo/John Minchillo)
AP Photo/John Minchillo
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Cubs outfielder Jason Heyward hasn’t played since Sunday due to a sore right wrist, but he’s hoping to be included in his team’s lineup on Friday, MLB.com’s Carrie Muskat reports. Matt Szucur, Ben Zobrist, and Kris Bryant have handled right field while Heyward has been out.

Heyward, 26, has gotten off to a disappointing start, as he’s batting .211/.317/.256 with only four doubles, no home runs, and 13 RBI in 104 plate appearances. He signed an eight-year, $184 million contract with the Cubs back in December.

Heyward said he hurt his wrist putting emphasis on it during hitting drills. He said, “I was doing some work off the tee and doing a drill with a donut on the bat, swinging, trying to stay through the middle, and I put more emphasis on [his wrist] and strained it from that.”

Cardinals plan to get creative to keep Aledmys Diaz in the lineup

St. Louis Cardinals' Jedd Gyorko high-fives with Matt Carpenter as they and Aledmys Diaz, center, leave the field following the Cardinals' 11-2 victory over the San Diego Padres in a baseball game Saturday, April 23, 2016, in San Diego. (AP Photo/Lenny Ignelzi)
AP Photo/Lenny Ignelzi
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Cardinals shortstop Jhonny Peralta is expected to return from the disabled list in early June, which means current shortstop Aledmys Diaz would return to the bench. There’s only one problem: Diaz has been one of the best hitters in baseball. The 25-year-old owns a sparkling .381/.422/.679 triple-slash line with 14 extra-base hits (including five homers) in 90 plate appearances.

The Cardinals plan to get creative to keep Diaz’s bat in the lineup. Per Jon Morosi of FOX Sports, the club is considering using Peralta at first and third base. Peralta, 33, last played third base in 2010 with the Indians and Tigers. He has logged only three games and nine total defensive innings at first base in his major league career.

Diaz isn’t about to displace Peralta. Last season, Peralta was one of the best-hitting shortstops, finishing with a .275/.334/.411 triple-slash line with 17 home runs and 41 RBI in 640 plate appearances. He was even more productive in 2014, his first year with the Cardinals.