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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.

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.