The Braves are in Philadelphia for the last time this season, which means they were running out of time to “take care of” the Phillie Phanatic. While the team was stretching at Citizens Bank Park prior to tonight’s 7:05 start, Braves outfielder Justin Upton and third baseman Chris Johnson teamed up for some shenanigans. Johnson surreptitiously crept behind the Phanatic and hunched over, then Upton pushed the Phanatic into Johnson, tipping him over embarrassingly.
This is mascot abuse and it will not be tolerated. I, for one, think the Braves should be banned from the playoffs. What say you, Craig?
The Rays have traded right-hander Jake Odorizzi to the Twins, per team announcements on Saturday evening. The Twins will receive minor league shortstop Jermaine Palacios in the deal. Despite previous speculation, recently-DFA’d outfielder Corey Dickerson was not included in the trade.
With Odorizzi, the Twins finally have the front-end starter they’ve been seeking all winter. It’s a bargain deal as well, as the 27-year-old righty is under contract through 2019 and didn’t require the club to part with any of their top-shelf prospects in the trade. Odorizzi will be looking to stage a comeback in 2018 after a dismal performance with the Rays last year, during which he eked out a career-worst 4.14 ERA, 3.8 BB/9 and 8.0 SO/9 through 143 1/3 innings.
Palacios, 21, ranked no. 27 in the Twins’ system last season. He split his year between Single-A Cedar Rapids and High-A Fort Myers, raking a combined .296/.333/.454 with 13 home runs and 20 stolen bases in 539 plate appearances. He’s expected to continue developing at shortstop, though he’s also seen limited time at second and third base during his four-year career in the minors.