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And That Happened: Classic!

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Note: due to the All-Star break, we now bring you a special “Classic” version of “And That Happened.” The following originally ran on the HardballTalk pamphlet following the games of July 15, 1947

Pirates 9, Dodgers 3; Pirates 12, Dodgers 4: Wally Westlake with a homer, a double and seven runs batted in during the first game, Hank Greenberg with two in the daycap. This Jackie Robinson fella went 3 for 4 in the back end and walked and scored a run in the first in a losing effort. See, despite all of the fuss those old men who write for the newspapers made at the beginning of the season about him being “a distraction” or not respecting the way baseball has always been played was a bunch of overblown malarkey. I realize not everyone gets their baseball news from pamphleteers like me now, but one day soon it will be commonplace and these old reactionary “respect the game” sorts of newsmen will find themselves out of a job. I put that date at 1958 at the latest.

Tigers 11, Senators 6: The Tigers win this one easily, thanks to Hoot Evers driving in three, Hal White doing a great job of picking up an ineffective Dizzy Trout in long relief and seven of the Senators players being blacklisted after giving evasive answers to the House Un-American Activities Committee.

Yankees 2, Indians 1; Yankees 9, Indians 4: The Yankees win both ends of the doubleheader. That’s fifteen and sixteen wins in a row for the Yankees, respectively. And they just added Bobo Newsom from the Senators the other day! Might as well just crown them now. Not unlike how the people of Spain just crowned Generalissimo Franco king last week. Long may the Yankees reign!

White Sox 5, Red Sox 1: Taffy Wright with a homer and a couple of RBI. What’s with the names of players these days, fellas? We have “Taffy” and “Hoot” and “Bobo.” Not sure what the parents of the teens and 20s were thinking, but there was a time when names were normal and parents didn’t set out to give kids unique names just for the sake of uniqueness.

Athletics 8, Browns 1: Ellis Kinder gave up five runs and Nels Potter three and the Browns offense went missing as well. Much like that experimental radio controlled plane I recently built and started flying. Indeed, just last week I was flying it near my summer home in Roswell, New Mexico. It went over a bluff near the airbase and I couldn’t find it. Oh well, I’m sure no one noticed and that nothing will ever come of it.

Cardinals 8, Braves 2: Joe Garagiola went hitless, but the scouts I talk to are still over the moon about that kid. And to think, there were some who thought that the other young man from St. Louis everyone was high on, that Lawrence Berra kid, was the better player. Anyway, Braves shortstop Nanny Fernandez went 0 for 4 and let a couple of balls get through the infield. Just Nanny being Nanny.

Giants 4, Cubs 0: Dave Koslo with the shutout. Boy oh boy, he dominated those northsiders like that Taft-Hartley Act which just passed is going to dominate organized labor!

Reds 5, Phillies 4: Ewell Blackwell pitched well. Sorry, I know I say that every time he starts, but part of that whole thing with the pamphlets and the newspapers is about telling the same jokes over and over and creating a unique little culture of writing which may attract readers who purchase the pamphlets over and over again and, perhaps, interact with we pamphleteers and one another. I know some of you may find our letters to the pamphleteer section a little rowdy sometimes, but it’s the future of this business, really.

Julio Urias is on his way back to the majors

NEW YORK, NY - MAY 27:  Julio Urias #78 of the Los Angeles Dodgers pitches against the New York Mets during their game at Citi Field on May 27, 2016 in New York City.  (Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images)
Al Bello/Getty Images
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Dodgers 19-year-old rookie Julio Urias is coming back to the majors and Alex Wood is headed to the 15-day disabled list with left elbow soreness, Andy McCullough of the Los Angeles Times reports. Urias will likely start Saturday against the Braves, which will mark his debut in front of the home crowd.

Urias made his major league debut on Friday against the Mets at Citi Field, but lasted only 2 2/3 innings. He yielded three runs on five hits and four walks with three strikeouts.

Urias came into the season rated as the Dodgers’ #1 prospect and the #2 overall prospect in baseball. Prior to his promotion, he had compiled a 1.10 ERA with 44 strikeouts and eight walks over 41 innings with Triple-A Oklahoma City.

Mookie Betts enjoys a three-homer game against the Orioles

BALTIMORE, MD - MAY 31: Mookie Betts #50 of the Boston Red Sox follows his three run homer against the Baltimore Orioles in the second inning at Oriole Park at Camden Yards on May 31, 2016 in Baltimore, Maryland.  (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)
Rob Carr/Getty Images
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The Red Sox seem to have hit the jackpot on all of their young players so far this year. Jackie Bradley, Jr. just had a 29-game hitting streak snapped. Xander Bogaerts extended his hitting streak to 24 games on Tuesday night. And Mookie Betts has been quite productive batting leadoff for the Red Sox this year, entering Tuesday with an even .800 OPS.

Betts, 23, hit 18 home runs in his first full season last year. With a three-homer night against the Orioles on Tuesday, he’s already up to 12 in 2016 with four months of season left. The first was of the solo variety, a line drive to center field off of Kevin Gausman in the first inning. Betts followed up in the third with a liner to left field for a three-run dinger off of Gausman. He made it three in the seventh, drilling a Dylan Bundy offering to right field.

Here’s video of homer number two:

Betts finished 3-for-5 as the Red Sox won 6-2 at Camden Yards.

The stats show the Pirates as an outlier in throwing “headhunter” pitches

ST. LOUIS, MO - SEPTEMBER 5: Reliever Arquimedes Caminero #37 of the Pittsburgh Pirates pitches against the St. Louis Cardinals in the seventh inning at Busch Stadium on September 5, 2015 in St. Louis, Missouri.  (Photo by Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images)
Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images
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Last week at ESPN Sweetspot’s Inside the Zona, Ryan Morrison looked into the data and found that the Pirates stand out among the rest when it comes to throwing “headhunter” pitches. Those are defined as fastballs 3.2 feet or higher and 1.2 feet towards the batter from the center of the plate.

The research was prompted because Diamondbacks second baseman Jean Segura was hit in the helmet by Pirates reliever Arquimedes Caminero last Tuesday in the seventh inning. The next inning, Caminero hit shortstop Nick Ahmed in the jaw with a pitch and was instantly ejected.

Morrison illustrated the data in a nice chart, which you should check out. The Pirates have thrown 93 of those pitches, which is way more than any other team. The next closest team is the Reds at 68 pitches. The major league average is approximately 48 pitches.

The Pirates have had an organizational philosophy of pitching inside since at least 2013, as MLB.com’s Tom Singer quoted manager Clint Hurdle as saying, “We’re not trying to hurt people, just staying in with conviction.”

Morrison goes on to suggest that the Diamondbacks should have forfeited last Wednesday and Thursday’s games against the Pirates in protest, out of concern for their players’ safety. As it happened, the D-Backs lost both games anyway, suffering a series sweep. The two clubs don’t meet again this season.

D-Backs manager Chip Hale said after last Tuesday’s game that Caminero “shouldn’t be at this level”. Caminero responded to those comments today, Rob Biertempfel of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review reports. “I’m actually glad you asked me about that,” Caminero said. “The only thing I’ve got to say about (Hale) is that he is a perfect manager. And he was a perfect player, too. That’s it. I know what I did wasn’t good, but it happens in baseball. I wasn’t trying to hit anyone.”

I realize I’m late on pointing out Morrison’s terrific article and the whole debacle between the two teams, but I felt it was worth highlighting.

Jose Bautista: “I’d be stupid to leave” Toronto

TORONTO, CANADA - MAY 29: Jose Bautista #19 of the Toronto Blue Jayshits a two-run home run in the fifth inning during MLB game action against the Boston Red Sox on May 29, 2016 at Rogers Centre in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. (Photo by Tom Szczerbowski/Getty Images)
Tom Szczerbowski/Getty Images
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Also included in a recent report on Blue Jays outfielder Jose Bautista by Tom Verducci of Sports Illustrated — along with his belief that Rougned Odor was the only bad guy in the May 15 debacle — was the slugger’s desire to remain a Blue Jay. Per Verducci, Bautista said, “I love the city. I’d be stupid to leave” Toronto.

Bautista, 35, is in the final year of a five-year, $65 million extension signed in February 2011. Back in November, the Jays exercised their 2016 club option for $14 million. Bautista isn’t willing to discuss contract details during the season, so the two sides will have to wait until at least October to come to an agreement.

Entering Tuesday’s game against the Yankees, Bautista is hitting .237/.371/.489 with 11 home runs, 37 RBI, and 40 walks, the latter of which leads the American League.