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And That Happened: Wednesday’s scores and highlights

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Indians 7, Red Sox 4: A three-run walkoff homer for Asdrubal Cabrera in the 12th inning to give the Tribe a three-game sweep. With rain delays and extra innings the game took seven hours, ending at 2:02AM. Six straight wins for the Indians.

Mariners 2, Braves 0:  Hisashi Iwakuma and two relievers combined for a six-hit shutout. Stefan Romero ,who came into the game hitting .204, hit cleanup. Lloyd McClendon was asked about it and he said “Somebody has got to hit there. I don’t have Bonds, so it’s going to be Romero.” Romero hit a triple a single and scored a run. When things are going well they’re going well. Five straight wins for Seattle.

Athletics 7, Yankees 4: Two homers for Yoenis Cespedes and the A’s bounce back from a 4-0 deficit to win going away. Four straight losses for New York, which has been outscored 21-0 in the seventh inning-on over that span. They’ve lost 12 of 16 at home.

Padres 3, Pirates 2: San Diego scored three runs and won the game despite getting just one hit. And it wasn’t even an RBI hit. It was a bunt single in the first inning. You can do that when you take nine walks from Pirates pitchers. Their runs came via a sac fly, an error and a bases-loaded walk. Viva the smallest of small ball.

Nationals 8, Phillies 4: Stephen Strasburg struck out 11 in seven innings and the Nats’ bats beat up on A.J. Burnett and the reeling Phillies. Anthony Rendon had a homer and a two-run single. The Nats have won four of five and are a game and a half out of first. Perhaps this is the run everyone expected but which never came last year.

Blue Jays 8, Tigers 2: Ugly loss for the Tigers. After falling behind 3-2 in the sixth they loaded the bases with nobody out and then the next three hitters went down in ignominious and unproductive fashion. Maybe it’s just as well, as it would’ve been slightly more dispiriting to have the bullpen surrender five runs in the final two innings to blow a lead than it was to see the bullpen surrender five runs in the final two innings to merely increase a previously-existing deficit.

Giants 3, Reds 2: Juan Perez and Michael Morse homered in the sixth inning to account for all the Giants’ runs. The Giants win their 10th of 13 and have the best record in baseball. Bay Area World Series, anyone?

Marlins 5, Rays 4: That’s nine straight losses for the Rays, though it obviously wasn’t their greatest loss last night.

Cubs 5, Mets 4: Starlin Castro made an error in the first inning that cost the Cubs three runs, but then he proceeded to go 3 for 4 with three RBI to make up for it. Edwin Jackson won this ugly game. But then again, pretty much all Edwin Jackson games are ugly. That’s kind of his thing.

Orioles 6, Rangers 5: Chris Davis had a three-run shot for the O’s to make two games in a row in which former Texas-sluggers-turned-Orioles-sluggers abused the Rangers. They should’ve had Rafael Palmeiro throw out the first pitch to Sammy Sosa or something. Adrian Beltre had two homers in a winning personal effort despite a losing team effort.

Diamondbacks 16, Rockies 8: Trying to think how much money you’d have to pay me to watch an entire four hour, nine inning game featuring 24 runs on 34 hits. Just not my cup of tea. It was Miguel Montero’s cup of tea, however. According to the game story, Montero said before the game that he felt like he’d get five or six RBI. He got six RBI. I feel like that’s the sort of brash prediction he’d disparage if a young teammate made it, but let’s leave that alone for now.

Cardinals 5, Royals 2: Matt Carpenter had five hits including the go-ahead double in the 11th, helping to end the Cards’ three-game losing streak. That’s the Cardinals’ eighth straight win at Kauffman Stadium, however.

White Sox 2, Dodgers 1: John Danks and three relievers combined for a two-hitter. The Dodgers are skidding out of control, having lost six of eight while watching the Giants take an eight-game lead in the division. The worst it ever got last season — when Don Mattingly was almost fired before the Dodgers’ summer surge — was nine and a half games.

Twins 6, Brewers 4:  Oswaldo Arcia homered and drove in four. That’s three homers in ten games for Arcia since being called up.

Angels 4, Astros 0: Garrett Richards tossed eight shutout innings and in one of those innings struck out the side on nine pitches. He’s the second guy to do that this week.

Royals pay tribute to late Yordano Ventura during spring training opener

MINNEAPOLIS, MN - AUGUST 12: Yordano Ventura #30 of the Kansas City Royals delivers a pitch against the Minnesota Twins during the first inning of the game on August 12, 2016 at Target Field in Minneapolis, Minnesota. (Photo by Hannah Foslien/Getty Images)
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The Royals honored former pitcher Yordano Ventura prior to their first Cactus League game against the Rangers on Saturday. Ventura was killed in a car accident in his native Dominican Republic in late January.

Rangers’ third baseman Adrian Beltre and center fielder Carlos Gomez paid their respects to the pitcher with a floral arrangement that was laid on the mound. Both teams stood along the foul lines during a pregame video tribute that highlighted Ventura’s tenure with Kansas City. Following the game, Gomez spoke to the media about his relationship with Ventura, describing their frequent conversations during the season and commending the pitcher for having “the same passion that I had early in my career” (via WFAA.com’s Levi Weaver).

A plaque dedicated to the 25-year-old was also presented to club manager Ned Yost as a more permanent commemoration of Ventura’s contributions to the sport. Blair Kerkhoff of the Kansas City Star reports that the plaque will be mounted in the club’s spring training facilities alongside tributes to members of the Royals’ 2014 and 2015 playoff teams.

The full text of the plaque is below, via MLB.com’s Jeffrey Flanagan:

A brother and a teammate, Yordano Ventura, passed away on the morning of January 22 in his native Dominican Republic, at the age of 25. He signed with the Royals as a 17-year-old, eventually making the big league team in 2013 as a 22-year-old. On most days, he could be found laughing and joking with his baseball family in the clubhouse. However, on days when he pitched, that smile was replaced by a quiet confidence and an intense fire, which he brought to the mound for every start. He had many highlights in his abbreviated career, not the least of which was throwing eight shutout innings in Game #6 of the 2014 World Series to force a Game #7 vs. San Francisco.

Gerrit Cole named Pirates’ Opening Day starter

BRADENTON, FL - FEBRUARY 19: Gerrit Cole #45 of the Pittsburgh Pirates poses for a photograph during MLB spring training photo day on February 19, 2017 at Pirate City in Bradenton, Florida. (Photo by Brian Blanco/Getty Images)
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Right-hander Gerrit Cole is set to take the mound for the Pirates on Opening Day, according to a team announcement on Saturday. It’s a spot that was most recently occupied by former Pirate Francisco Liriano, who made three consecutive Opening Day starts for the club before getting dealt to the Blue Jays last August.

The 26-year-old produced career-worst numbers during his fourth run with the Pirates in 2016, due in large part to bouts of inflammation in his right elbow. He finished the year with a 3.88 ERA, 2.8 BB/9 and 7.6 SO/9 over 116 innings before getting shut down in September to avoid further injury to his elbow. When healthy, however, Cole has been lights-out for the Pirates. Prior to his injury-laden campaign last year, he touted a career 3.07 ERA, 2.2 BB/9, 8.5 SO/9 and cumulative 10.2 fWAR from 2013 through 2015.

Cole will go toe-to-toe with the Red Sox during Boston’s home opener on Monday, April 3. Right-hander Jameson Taillon is scheduled to make the second start of the year, while fellow righty Ivan Nova will cover the Pirates’ home opener against the Braves on April 7. The Pirates’ third and fifth starters have yet to be announced.