Skip Schumaker signs two-year deal with the Reds

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Ken Rosenthal of FOXSports.com reports that Skip Schumaker has agreed to a two-year contract with the Reds, whose general manager Walt Jocketty was GM’ing the Cardinals when they drafted Schumaker back in 2001.

After six seasons with the Cardinals he spent this year as a part-time player for the Dodgers, hitting .263 with two homers and a .665 OPS in 125 games. Schumaker hasn’t topped a .725 OPS since 2009, will be 34 years old soon, and isn’t very good defensively, but he has experience at second base and all three outfield spots and has decent on-base skills.

Still, a multi-year deal for a 34-year-old bench player coming off a so-so season is more evidence that spending is going to be wacky this offseason.

Albert Pujols hit his 597th career home run

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Angels DH Albert Pujols smacked his 597th career home run, a two-run shot in the top of the first inning during Wednesday night’s 5-2 loss to the Rays. The blast was off of Erasmo Ramirez and marked No. 6 on the season for the future Hall of Famer.

Pujols finished 1-for-3 with the homer and a walk. After Wednesday’s game, he’s hitting a lackluster .244/.296/.378 with 34 RBI and 14 runs scored in 186 trips to the plate.

Pujols currently ranks ninth on baseball’s all-time leaderboard and is three shy of joining the 600-homer club. He’s currently 13 home runs away from tying Sammy Sosa for eighth all-time.

Chris Sale’s streak of starts with at least 10 strikeouts ends

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Red Sox starter Chris Sale entered Wednesday’s outing against the Rangers with at least 10 strikeouts in eight consecutive starts, tying a record he already shared with Pedro Martinez. He failed do break the record, racking up only six strikeouts in 7 1/3 innings. Fortunately, the Red Sox scored seven runs in the bottom of the seventh to put him in line for the win. Sale gave up four runs (three earned) on six hits and a walk.

After Wednesday’s outing, Sale is sitting on a 2.34 ERA with a 101/14 K/BB ratio in 73 innings. So far, so good for the Red Sox, who acquired Sale from the White Sox in December.

Sale previously racked up 10 strikeouts in eight consecutive games between May 23 and June 30 in 2015 with the White Sox. Pedro Martinez accomplished the feat for the Red Sox between August 19 and September 27 in 1999.