Phillies and Kyle Kendrick avoid arbitration on one-year deal

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The Phillies and right-hander Kyle Kendrick have avoided arbitration by agreeing to a one-year, $7.675 million contract. The deal includes award bonuses.

Kendrick just finished up a two-year, $7.5 million extension and is arbitration-eligible for the final time this winter. The 29-year-old got off to an excellent start last season, but ended up with a 4.70 ERA over 182 innings before being shut down with shoulder inflammation. While his salary continues to rise, the Phillies see enough value to keep him around.

Kendrick projects to slot behind Cliff Lee and Cole Hamels in Philadelphia’s starting rotation in 2014. Miguel Alfredo Gonzalez and Roberto Hernandez are the top two candidates for the remaining spots.

Watch: Brian McCann’s incredible tag nails Greg Bird at home plate

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Things got a little wild in the fifth inning of Game 7 of the ALCS on Saturday. With one out and runners at the corners, Astros’ right-hander Charlie Morton fired a 1-1 fastball to Todd Frazier. Frazier returned the ball to third baseman Alex Bregman, who tossed a perfect throw over to Brian McCann at the plate just as Greg Bird came charging home. McCann’s setup was flawless, nailing Bird as he slid into the plate and nullifying the Yankees’ first real attempt to get on the board.

That’s as close as the Yankees have come to scoring so far. The Astros took an early 1-0 lead with Evan Gattis‘ 405-footer off of CC Sabathia in the top of the fourth inning. Jose Altuve chimed in with an opposite-field solo shot in the fifth, while McCann followed his lead-preserving tag with an equally jaw-dropping two-out, two-RBI double. Houston currently leads 4-0 in the bottom of the fifth.