Jose Fernandez

And That Happened: Tuesday’s scores and highlights


Marlins 1, Braves 0: I talked about how awesome 1-0 pitching duels are just last week. I wish I had saved that ode for this one. Braves pitchers struck out 13 hitters, didn’t walk any and allowed only one run and lost. That’s pretty mind-blowing. Not as mind-blowing as Jose Fernandez was, of course. He struck out 14 and allowed only three hits in eight shutout innings. And the game was so fast. Two hours and eight minutes. I mean, you could play this game almost five full times in the same amount of time it takes to play my new favorite song (be sure to watch through to the end):

Angels 7, Nationals 2: There went 499 and 500 for Albert Pujols. He has eight on the year and has an OPS of .956. Nowadays everybody wanna talk like they got something to say, but nothing comes out when they move their lips — just a bunch of gibberish –and mother****ers act like they forgot about El Hombre.

Rays 7, Twins 3:  David DeJesus drove in three and David Price was effective, but let’s talk about the weird here instead: Price was hit by a comebacker right in the, urm, um, midsection in the top of the fourth. He was fine, though. This is why you wear a cup, gentlemen. Also, Great Moments in Instant Replay: Yunel Escobar took ball four, the umps were confused about the count, checked instant replay and still got the darn count wrong. Escobar ended up striking out on the 4-2 pitch.

Royals 8, Indians 2Moustakas’ three-run homer, Eric Hosmer had four hits and James Shields was on point. This has been the blueprint for the past couple of year, but only Shields has read the plans and adhered to them consistently before last night.

Reds 4, Pirates 1: Johnny Cueto with his second straight complete game. The only blemish here was a homer given up to Andrew McCutchen in the ninth.

Blue Jays 9, Orioles 3Brett LawrieMelky Cabrera and Edwin Encarnacion each hit homers. It was Encarnacion’s first of the year. He watched it go out and rounded the bases with his right-arm-cocked chicken wing thing. No one got in his face and barked at him afterward. They just played baseball. Imagine.

Tigers 8, White Sox 6: Miguel Cabrera finally woke up, going 3 for 5 with a homer and an RBI double. Of course, a lot of Tigers hit against Sox’ spot starter Charlie Leesman, who filled in for Chris Sale.

Cardinals 3, Mets 0: Adam Wainwright shut the Mets out into the seventh inning but had to leave when he hyperextended his knee fielding a ball. He says he’s OK. No one asked if the Mets think they’ll be OK after being shut out, but we presume so.

Yankees 9, Red Sox 3: Masahiro Tanaka continues to be relatively unimpressed with major league hitters. I’m sure he wouldn’t say that, but no one has really challenged him yet (7.1 IP, 7 H, 2 ER, 7K 0 BB). The Yankees, meanwhile, scored eight runs — only three earned — off Jon Lester. Jacoby Ellsbury’s return to Fenway in enemy colors started off well for him: he tripled to lead off the game and then robbed Grady Sizemore of a hit with a nice catch. He later hit a two-run double.

Editor’s Note: Hardball Talk‘s partner FanDuel is hosting a one-day $40,000 Fantasy Baseball league for Wednesday night’s MLB games. It’s $25 to join and first prize is $6,000. Starts at 7:05pm ET on WednesdayHere’s the FanDuel link.

Cubs 9, Diamondbacks 2: Mike Olt — MIKE OLT! — hit a three-run homer. The Cubs have won three of four. Arizona has dropped four straight.

Padres 2, Brewers 1: A Chase Headley homer in the 12th ended up winning it, but a big assist goes to the Padres pen who tossed six shutout innings. The Brewers’ four-game winning streak is snapped.

Rangers 5, Athletics 4: Former Athletic Mike Choice hit a two-run single in the ninth to help the Rangers rally. After the game he said “you always want to do something good against the ex.” I have no idea what he’s talking about. Now if you’ll excuse me, I have to go shave and put on my best clothes because my ex-wife has a meeting near my house this morning and I need to look my best on the off-chance that she stops by to say hi to the kids before they go to school.

Rockies 2, Giants 1: Always fun to see a pitching duel in Denver. Franklin Morales allowed one run on five hits over seven. Madison Bumgarner allowed two runs in eight. All the runs came on solo homers and the game was over in 2:41.

Astros 5, Mariners 2: Remember when people were all like “hmm, maybe the Mariners are better now” a couple of weeks ago? Haha, that was a riot. Collin McHugh was called up from Oklahoma City to take Scott Feldman’s start and didn’t walk a batter while pitching into the seventh. The crowd at Safeco Field numbered 10,466 and was the fifth-lowest in park history. Six of the seven lowest have come when the Astros were in town. Some draw, eh? The Mariners have dropped eight in a row and ten of eleven, however, so that crowd ain’t all on Houston.

Phillies 3, Dodgers 2: The Dodgers were shut down by the Phillies’ starter for the second straight night — this time A.J. Burnett — but really lost this when Carl Crawford and Hanley Ramirez got their wires crossed on a short Carlos Ruiz fly to left in the 10th. The next man up, Domonic Brown, doubled him in.

Mariners interested in free agent outfielder Nori Aoki

AP Photo/Ben Margot
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New Mariners general manager Jerry Dipoto has kept pretty busy in his short time on the job and Bob Dutton of the Tacoma News Tribune reports that free agent outfielder Nori Aoki could be his next target. The club recently pursued a trade for Marlins outfielder Marcell Ozuna, but the asking price has them looking at alternatives.

Aoki, who turns 34 in January, has hit .287 with a .353 on-base percentage over four seasons since coming over from Japan. He was having a fine season with the Giants this year prior to being shut down in September with lingering concussion symptoms.

The Giants decided against picking up Aoki’s $5.5 million club option for 2016 earlier this month, but he should still do pretty well for himself this winter assuming he’s feeling good.

Report: Johnny Cueto is believed to be looking for a $140-160 million deal

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It was reported Sunday that free agent right-hander Johnny Cueto had turned down a six-year, $120 million contract from the Diamondbacks. He’s hoping to land a bigger deal this winter and ESPN’s Jerry Crasnick has heard some chatter about what he’s looking for.

Jordan Zimmermann finalized a five-year, $110 million contract with the Tigers today, which works out to $22 million per season. Arizona’s offer to Cueto checked in at $20 million per season. A six-year offer to Cueto at the same AAV (average annual value) as Zimmermann would put him at $132 million, which is still a little shy of the figure stated by Crasnick. Of course, Cueto owns a 2.71 ERA (145 ERA+) over the last five seasons compared to a 3.14 ERA (123 ERA+) by Zimmermann during that same timespan, so there’s a case to be made that he should get more. Still, he’s the clear No. 3 starter on the market behind David Price and Zack Greinke.

CBS Sports’ Jon Heyman reports that the Dodgers, Giants, Red Sox, and Cubs are among the other teams who have interest in Cueto. One variable in his favor is that he is not attached to draft pick compensation, as he was traded from the Reds to the Royals during the 2015 season.

Report: Around 20 teams have contacted the Braves about Shelby Miller

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The rebuilding Braves have already been active on the trade market and they might not be done, as CBS Sports’ Jon Heyman reports that right-hander Shelby Miller has been a very popular name. In fact, around 20 teams have checked in.

Nothing is considered close and the Braves have set a very high asking price, mostly centered around offense. They asked for right-hander Luis Severino in talks with the Yankees and would expect outfielder Marcell Ozuna among other pieces from the Marlins. The Diamondbacks and Giants are among the other interested clubs.

Miller is under team control through 2018, so there’s not necessarily a sense of urgency to move him, but anything is possible with the way the Braves are doing things right now. The 25-year-old is coming off a year where he went 6-17, but that was about really rotten luck more than anything else, as he had a fine 3.02 ERA and 171/73 K/BB ratio over 205 1/3 innings. The Braves gave him the worst run support of any starter in the majors.

Mets expected to tender a contract to Jenrry Mejia

NEW YORK, NY - JULY 12:  Jenrry Mejia #58 of the New York Mets reacts as he walks off the field after getting the final out of the seventh inning against the Arizona Diamondbacks at Citi Field on July 12, 2015 in the Flushing neighborhood of the Queens borough of New York City.  (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)
Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images

Jenrry Mejia appeared in just seven games this past season due to a pair of suspensions for performance-enhancing drugs, but Adam Rubin of ESPN New York reports that the Mets are expected to tender him a contract for 2016.

While the Mets were vocal about their disappointment in Mejia’s actions, it makes sense to keep him around as an option. Had he played a full season in 2015, he would have earned $2.595 million. He’s arbitration-eligible for the second time this winter and figures to receive a contract similar to his 2015 figure, but he’ll only be paid for the games he plays. He still has 100 games to serve on his second PED suspension, which means that he’ll only be paid for 62 games in 2016. This likely puts his salary closer to $1 million, which is a small price to pay for someone who could prove useful during the second half and beyond. He also won’t count toward the team’s 40-man roster until he’s active.

Mejia, who turned 26 in October, owns a 3.68 ERA in the majors and saved 28 games for the Mets in 2014. He’s currently pitching as a starter in the Dominican Winter League.