Chicago White Sox v Baltimore Orioles

And That Happened: Thursday’s scores and highlights

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Orioles 3, White Sox 1: The Orioles win and, frankly, I’m going to credit playing at home. Yep, nothing like a home game. Makes all the difference.

And if you think for a minute I’m irrationally beating this into the ground, go take a gander at the NFL Industrial Complex’s collective and concerted moaning and complaining about last night’s Ravens game going down in Denver. Both official NFL PR people (more than one) and multiple NFL reporters and sycophants parroted talking points about the Orioles and Major League Baseball being intransigent or “making a stink” when it was, in fact, the NFL which made the stink and when, in fact, the Orioles game was scheduled first. All while conveniently ignoring that the NFL has never been willing to budge an inch for baseball when the situation was reversed. Also note that the AP photographers at the Orioles game last night took multiple pictures of empty seats at Camden Yards and the empty Ravens stadium next door. If you think for a second that word didn’t come down from NFL to their obedient scribes to play up “Orioles Mean!” talk in response to fan inquiries about why the Ravens weren’t opening at home, and if you didn’t think that the didn’t all obey, you’re nuts.

Red Sox 9, Yankees 8: It’s like Game 4 of the 2004 ALCS as seen through blurry glasses and with bad fundamental play around the edges. The Red Sox found themselves down to their last out with Mariano Rivera on the hill. Then a single, a pinch runner stealing a base and cruising to third when the catcher’s throw went skipping into the outfield followed by a Stephen Drew and things were all tied up. The tenth inning was spiked with a probably bad check-swing call from none other than Joe West — question: will check swings be reviewable next year? — and with new life Shane Victorino knocked in Jacoby Ellsbury.

Reds 6, Cardinals 2: Two homers for Todd Frazier as the Reds take three of four from St. Louis. It was the first series win for the Reds over the Cards in eight tries. The Reds are now a game and a half behind St. Louis for second place, three behind the Pirates.

Royals 7, Mariners 6: Big sloppy game won in large thanks to a big game from big Billy Butler, who went 5 for 5. Mike Moustakas had the 13th inning walkoff homer, however. The Royals had their chance to win it in the ninth as they led 6-5 with two outs before Raul Ibanez homered off Greg Holland to tie it. Holland had been pretty automatic before that, but Ibanez has those Lazarus Pits in his basement and stuff, so you know.

Diamondbacks 4, Giants 2: Interesting mostly because, with this loss, the Giants could be eliminated from NL West contention tonight. All that need happen is for the Dodgers to win in Cincinnati and the Giants to lose against the Dbacks. That’s technical elimination. The Giants have been effectively eliminated for months now.

Astros 3, Athletics 2: Brad Peacock took a shutout into the eighth inning, the A’s mounted a rally, but it fell short and they fell out of first place in the West. Speaking of Peacock, you should totally go read this story about the making of and history of the movie “Clue.” Which is an all-time guilty pleasure of mine. When people say they don’t like it it-it- the f – it -flam – flames. Flames, on the side of my face, breathing-breathl- heaving breaths. Heaving breaths… Heathing…

Angels 6, Rays 2: The Angels knocked 11 hits off of David Price and the Rays lost for the ninth time in their last 12 games. They maintain their 2.5 game lead over the Yankees for the wild card but, boy howdy, are they skidding.

Spring training will be slightly shortened in 2018

SCOTTSDALE, AZ - MARCH 15:  General view of action between the Oakland Athletics and the San Francisco Giants during the spring training game at Scottsdale Stadium on March 15, 2014 in Scottsdale, Arizona. The A's defeated the Giants 8-1. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
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The Associated Press is reporting that the spring training schedule will be shortened by two days starting in 2018. That change comes as part of the new collective bargaining agreement, which was agreed to last month.

Specifically, the voluntary reporting date for pitchers, catchers, and injured players has been changed to 43 days before the start of the regular season, down from 45. For the rest of the players, the reporting date is 38 days before the start of the regular season, down from 40.

The change goes hand-in-hand with allowing teams 187 days, rather than 183, to complete their 162-game regular season schedule.

While just about everyone seems to be in agreement that the spring training exhibition schedule is too long, team owners are likely very hesitant to shorten that part of the spring schedule because it would cost them money. So they’re just allowing players to arrive to camp a couple of days later.

Report: Rays trade Logan Forsythe to the Dodgers for prospect Jose De Leon

ST. PETERSBURG, FL - AUGUST 4: Logan Forsythe #11 of the Tampa Bay Rays waits in the dugout to get on deck to bat during the third inning of a game against the Kansas City Royals on August 4, 2016 at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Florida. (Photo by Brian Blanco/Getty Images)
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Update (7:05 PM EST): The Rays and Dodgers have both announced the trade.

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Update (6:57 PM EST): That was fast. Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times reports the two sides have agreed to the trade. Forsythe for De Leon. An announcement is expected shortly.

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Jeff Passan of Yahoo Sports reports that the Dodgers and Rays are “deep into discussions” on a trade involving second baseman Logan Forsythe. Passan adds that the two sides have discussed pitcher Jose De Leon — the Dodgers’ top pitching prospect — as part of the return for Forsythe, but it’s unclear if he’s in the deal currently being discussed.

Forsythe, 30, hit a productive .264/.333/.444 with 20 home runs and 52 RBI in 567 plate appearances in 2016. He was even better the year before, finishing with an .804 OPS. Forsythe can fill the Dodgers’ obvious need at second base, but he also has experience playing third base, first base, shortstop, and corner outfield.

Forsythe is entering the second year of his two-year, $10.25 million contract extension with the Rays. He’ll earn $5.75 million in 2017 and his controlling team has an $8.5 million club option with a $1 million buyout for the 2018 season.