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And That Happened: Tuesday’s scores and highlights

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Blue Jays 9, Rays 6: The Jays scored six runs between the fourth and fifth innings. Well, in the fourth and fifth. Between the fourth and fifth were commercials and things. Mark Buehrle wins again. More importantly, the Jays do. That’s eight in a row.

Red Sox 6, Braves 3: Everyone wants to be your friend when things are going great but a true friend is someone who is there for you when the chips are down. That’s the Braves for ya, man. Helping out the Red Sox when they were at their worst and giving them a confidence boost. Seriously, after the game Jonny Gomes said “it’s good for our self esteem.” Oy.

White Sox 2, Indians 1: A two hour rain delay limited Chris Sale’s outing to three innings but four relievers allowed only one run in six innings combined.

Rockies 6, Phillies 2: Wilin Rosario had been 0 for his previous 13, but then he hit a go-ahead, three-run homer. A more notable homer was Ben Revere’s in a losing effort. It was his first career major league bomb. That after 384 games without one to start his time in the bigs, which was the longest such streak since the early 70s.

Astros 3, Royals 0: Four in a row for Houston. Collin McHugh shut out the Royals for 7 innings which, sure, sucks for the Royals, but at least it inspired Ned Yost to come out of the dugout and get ejected for arguing balls and strikes, proving he’s still alive and things.

Mets 4, Pirates 2: Daniel Murphy doubled twice and Ruben Tejada reached base four times as the Mets won for the fourth time in 13 games. I’m sure the new hitting coach had everything to do with it.

Twins 4, Rangers 3: A two-run rally off Joakim Soria in the bottom of the ninth for Minnesota. One run scoring on a single, the other scoring on Soria’s own error on a dribbler next to the mound which should have resulted in out three and should have had this game heading to extra innings. Pretty dispiriting for the Rangers, who stood to win even though they had to go with emergency starter Scott Baker following Yu Darvish being scratched.

Brewers 7, Orioles 6: Pinch hit, walkoff RBI hits in extra innings aren’t the rarest of things. They happen. They don’t often come from starting pitchers doing the pinch hitting, though. That happened here with Yovani Gallardo doing the honors with a double in the tenth. Gallardo is a good hitter for a pitcher, but still. Lovely part was that just before that Buck Showalter walked Mark Reynolds, who came around to score, to get to the pitcher’s spot even though there was nobody on base.

Tigers 6, Athletics 5: The Tigers’ go-ahead run scored when Rajai Davis came home on a fielder’s choice in the eighth. He had made it to third, however, by stealing the bag as catcher Derek Norris was throwing the ball back to the pitcher, which is not something you see every day. That covered for Max Scherzer, who was roughed up again. It also snapped the Tigers’ three-game losing streak.

Cardinals 6, Yankees 0: Lance Lynn with the five-hit shutout. It was his first career complete game at any level. Allen Craig and Matt Holliday each homered. Holliday and Matt Adams had three hits and an RBI a piece. Craig drove in two.

Angels 6, Mariners 4: Not the sharpest outing for Jered Weaver, but he did notch his fifth win in six starts. Sean Burnett, who had just come back after a year off due to elbow surgery, left the game with an elbow problem that sounds a lot like another elbow surgery is in the offing. Just really starting to hate elbows here, man.

Padres 4, Diamondbacks 3: Confession: I can’t watch all of the baseball games. Especially the late games, so I’m just naturally less familiar with, say, the bullpen arms and lesser names of some of the teams out west. And if you’re choosing late games to watch and/or follow, you’re naturally more likely to pick the Dodgers, Giants or A’s over the Padres and Diamondbacks. All of this is a roundabout way of saying that it’s rather embarrassing for a national baseball writer type to read a game story from a big league game and have the top part of it — where the key players of the game are usually identified — contain all kinds of names you’ve never really heard of. But it happens. It happened here. There are thousands of baseball players, man. It’s hard to know all of them.

Dodgers 6, Reds 3: Four driven in for Andre Ethier, three of which came on a triple. Zack Greinke struck out 11 in seven and two-thirds.

Giants 4, Cubs 0: Tim Hudson is aging like fine wine. If he continues to do this for a bit longer he’s going to give Hall of Fame voters a lot to think about. Seven shutout innings, five strikeouts, no walks. Two sac flies for Buster Posey.

Marlins vs. Nationals: POSTPONED: As a man I ain’t never been much for sunny days. I’m as calm as a fruit stand in New York and maybe as strange. But when the color goes out of my eyes its usually the change. But damn Sam I love a woman that rains

Some Mets fans are not happy that Beyonce is playing at Citi Field

Beyoncé performs during halftime of the NFL Super Bowl 50 football game between the Denver Broncos and the Carolina Panthers, Sunday, Feb. 7, 2016, in Santa Clara, Calif.  (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)
Associated Press
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The funny thing about that “stick to sports” stuff I was going on about the other day is that, in reality, a whole lot of the people who say “stick to sports” don’t really want to just stick to sports. They’re totally cool going on about political, social or cultural stuff as long as it fits their world view. It’s not “stick to sports.” It’s “don’t talk about the social implications of sports-related stuff in ways that upset me.” If sports and culture come together in other ways, however, they’re completely fine in grinding their axe.

For example, Beyonce is playing a concert a Citi Field this summer. The show is so popular that they added a second date. The Mets’ Twitter feed just announced that tickets will go on sale for the new show soon:

A while lotta Mets fans responded to that negatively. For political/social/cultural reasons that they are willingly bringing in to a conversation about a pop singer and a baseball stadium that will double as a concert venue:

And they go on and on.

How much do you want to bet that a whole lotta these respondents would tell you to “stick to baseball” if you wanted to bring up how race affects the sport or how, if instead of Beyonce, this was announcing a Kid Rock/Ted Nugent-headlined festival and you mused whether that was a case of the Mets somehow endorsing their messages?

The Orioles and Yovani Gallardo are “making progress”

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Ken Rosenthal reports that the Orioles are “making progress” in talks with free agent right-hander Yovani Gallardo.

Gallardo has been on the market so long because he has a first round pick tied to him due to his declining the Rangers’ qualifying offer. The Orioles would have to forfeit the 14th overall pick in order to sign him. That has been too steep a price to pay for them all winter, but as we’re mere days away from pitchers and catchers reporting, it’s likely that Gallardo’s price has dropped enough to make it worth their while.

Gallardo has posted an ERA below 4.00 in six of his last seven seasons — and had a career-low 3.42 ERA in 2015 — but his strikeout rate has rapidly decreased with each year since 2012, suggesting that trouble could be on the horizon.

If the O’s do burn their pick to get Gallardo, it might make sense for them to go all-in with another free agent like Dexter Fowler, given that they’d not have to give up anything else to do it.

Rangers avoid arbitration with Mitch Moreland

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First baseman/outfielder Mitch Moreland and the Rangers have avoided arbitration by agreeing to a one-year, $5.7 million deal.

Moreland requested $6 million and the Rangers countered at $4.675 million, so the two sides settled on the player-friendly side of the midpoint.

Moreland bounced back from an injury wrecked 2014 season to have a career-year in 2015, hitting .278 with 23 homers and an .812 OPS in 132 games. Arbitration eligible for the final time at age 30, he’s set to be a free agent next offseason.

Tiger Stadium redevelopment group loses $50K because of its preference for artificial turf

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Craig Calcaterra
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We’ve posted frequently on the topic of the old Tiger Stadium site. If you’ve kept up with it you know that the site, nearly overgrown with weeds and strewn with trash before being rescued by a group of volunteers called the Navin Field Grounds Crew, is now being slated for redevelopment by the Detroit Police Athletic League.

The PAL is committed to keeping a baseball field as part of the development, but they are also, quite unfortunately, committed to putting artificial turf down over the bit of Earth where baseball legends once walked and ran.

Backlash to the plan has begun, however. Not just from people like me or the Navin Field Grounds Crew, who are opposed to fake grass, but to an actual donor to the Detroit Police Athletic League:

With an annual contribution of $50,000 to Detroit PAL’s programs, the Lear Corporation has been a major benefactor of the nonprofit for years. But in light of PAL’s controversial plan to redevelop the Tiger Stadium site with artificial turf, Lear’s CEO is speaking out.

Matthew Simoncini says that Lear is withdrawing its financial support of PAL for its mishandling of this delicate issue.

“I believe the [PAL] plan is severely flawed [and] a terrible use of resources,” says Simoncini. “[It] does not preserve this site and provides [an] unsafe playing surface for the children,”

I’m guessing $50,000 is not the sort of money that will seriously hinder a real estate redevelopment plan, but it’s good to hear someone with a stake in all of this voting with their wallet. Here’s hoping more do and that, eventually, PAL understands that there are some things more important than saving some money at the front end of a project.