Let’s talk about lineup card calligraphy

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There are a lot of aspects of baseball in which the digital world has changed things for the better. The evolution of baseball statistics, first and foremost, has changed the game forever for the better. Instant replay allows umpires to get right calls that otherwise would have been wrong. But there are some negatives too, and one that is near and dear to my heart is the typed-out lineup card.

Just look at this abomination from Wednesday’s Brewers/Phillies game:

Now compare that to the Phillies’ lineup card for Friday night’s game against the Marlins:

It’s a thing of beauty.

And here’s a Brewers lineup card from last March:

B-E-A-U-tiful.

You unsung heroes who turn lineup cards into art, keep doing what you do. There are some of us out there who appreciate it.

Dodgers activate Adrian Gonzalez

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The Dodgers have reinstated first baseman Adrian Gonzalez from the 60-day disabled list after his recovery from a herniated disc. To make room for him they have optioned Rob Segedin to Triple-A Oklahoma City.

Gonzalez last played on June 11. Since then the Dodgers have gone an astounding 46-9, with shoe-in rookie of the year candidate Cody Bellinger handling first base duties and posting a .978 OPS. When Gonzalez went down he was hitting .255/.304/.339 and only one homer in 49 games.

It’ll be interesting to see what kind of playing time he gets going forward. The Dodgers, of course, have a comfortable lead in the NL West, so they could afford to allow Gonzalez to play a good bit to see if his bat sharpens up while simultaneously giving Bellinger, who has never played more than 137 games in a season, a bit of a breather. Beyond that, though, the Dodgers ain’t broke, so it’s hard to see why anyone would want to tinker with things.

Rays activate Kevin Kiermaier

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The Tampa Bay Rays have activated outfielder Kevin Kiermaier from the 60-day disabled list.

Kiermaier, who fractured his hip in early June, is batting leadoff and playing center field in tonight’s game against the Mariners. He was just 3-for-24 on his rehab assignment, but those aren’t usually predictive of anything. He was hitting .258/.329/.408 when he went down. Getting his bat — and, more importantly, his glove — back in the lineup will boost the struggling Rays in their quest for a playoff spot.