Anthony Rendon

And That Happened: Wednesday’s scores and highlights


Nationals 3, Diamondbacks 2: Yet another win for the Nationals. Their ninth in a row. Yet another walkoff. Fourth in five games, I think. Anthony Rendon hit the single that scored Bryce Harper in the ninth. Afterwards Harper described the Nats current run: “It’s absolutely epic. That’s the best word I can put out there.” Isn’t that two words? Ah, forget it, he’s rolling.

Tigers 6, Rays 0: A good way to test to see how close attention someone is paying to the Tigers is to ask them who their best pitcher and best hitter have been this season. If they don’t say Rick Porcello and Victor Martinez, they haven’t been paying attention. Porcello tosses a three-hit shutout for his 14th victory and Martinez drove in five.

Rangers 5, Marlins 4: Nick Martinez allowed two runs over six innings and got the win in front of what, for him anyway, was a hometown crowd. After the game he said that it was a big deal winning in Miami because he “grew up watching” the Marlins. I realize the math works out and that I’m an old fart and everything, but it’s hard for me to get my head around anyone growing up watching a team that, to me anyway, feels like it just showed up yesterday. I suppose people in their 50s feel the same way when I talk about growing up watching the Blue Jays come play the Tigers and stuff. Time marches on, though.

Blue Jays 9, Brewers 5: Milwaukee had a five game winning streak of its own snapped. Jose Bautista had a three-run homer in a five-run sixth inning. Here is Brewers manager Ron Roenicke describing the Jays scoring those six and Carlos Gomez hitting a two-run homer to pull Milwaukee closer:

“So tough inning, you know we come back and Gomey gets the two points and we get a little closer, and we give up another homer.

I’m not sure if I’m more disturbed by the “two points” or the “Gomey,” really.

Indians 5, Twins 0: Five Indians pitchers, led by T.J. House, combined to shut out Minnesota on six hits. For whatever reason I get all the Indians transaction news sent directly to me from their front office — I guess I got on the right mailing list a couple of years back — so I see every little option and purchased contract they do, even if it’s not at all newsworthy to most people. Four of the five pitchers in this one — House, C.C. Lee, Nick Hagadone and Bryan Shaw — are regularly featured in those, to the point where I actually spend a lot of time worrying about them. Wondering if they get bored or lonely driving up and down I-71 all the time. Wondering where they live when they’re going back and forth like that all the time. Good to see them go all Voltron like this for a night.

Pirates 3, Braves 2: Atlanta’s five game winning streak comes to an end and Pittsburgh’s seven game losing streak halts at the same time. The winning run came around in part to Justin Upton dropping a routine fly ball. The Upton giveth on Tuesday, taketh away on Wednesday.

Phillies 4, Mariners 3: Cole Hamels has lost a lot when he’s pitched well. Yesterday he won when he didn’t have his best stuff. He probably deserves that more than anyone.

Editor’s Note: Hardball Talk’s partner FanDuel is hosting a one-day $25,000 Fantasy Baseball league for Thursday night’s MLB games. It’s $25 to join and first prize is $5,000. Starts at 7:10pm ET on ThursdayHere’s the FanDuel link.

Mets 8, Athletics 5: Lucas Duda hit a three-run homer. He has hit a LOT of homers in the past couple of months. The Mets and A’s split two. Remember a few years back when there were two-game series all the damn time? God, I hated that. Sometimes it’s good to remember that not everything baseball does is aggravating. Sometimes they fix the aggravating things they did before. In baseball, that’s vision.

Padres 4, Dodgers 1: Eric Stults won and said that he “executed pitches better” than he had. After the Mariners-Phillies game, James Paxton said “I probably could’ve executed pitches a little bit better.” I wish I had the technology to keep a running count for terms like that after games. I think they come and go in cycles. We’re in a big “executing pitches” era these days. It has surpassed “make pitches” by quite a margin, I think.

Rockies 5, Royals 2: The Royals lead in the Central drops to one thanks in part to a Matt McBride grand slam. Not bad for a guy who just got called up a couple of days ago. McBride doesn’t even get a chance to bat that inning if it wasn’t for a Christian Colon error at third that should’ve been out number three.

Giants 8, Cubs 3: First they win the protest over Tuesday night’s washout then they win the game. Not a bad day for San Francisco. Of course, commenters told me all day yesterday that the Cubs grounds crew made no mistake worth noting, so how they won the protest is beyond me. Oh, wait:

Available video of the incident, and conversations with representatives of the Cubs, demonstrate that the Cubs’ inability to deploy the tarp appropriately was caused by the failure to properly wrap and spool the tarp after its last use.  As a result, the groundskeeping crew was unable to properly deploy the tarp after the rain worsened.

Nope, no one screwed up there.

Cardinals 7, Reds 3: The Cards got to Johnny Cueto for five runs in five and Lance Lynn was solid. The Cards have won eight of nine and are almost singlehandedly bringing respectability to the NL Wild Card race. Someone’s gotta.

Orioles 4, White Sox 3: Nelson Cruz took the MLB lead in homers with his 33rd as the O’s sweep the Chisox. The O’s hit three homers in all off Hector Noesi. They lead all of baseball in bombs.

Astros 5, Yankees 2: I probably follow a disproportionate number of Yankees fans on Twitter for whatever reason. And Yankees fans — or these Yankees fans, not sure which — probably gave the Astros disproportionate criticism for all that “2017 World Series champs!” and front office hype that they were getting a little while back. As such, watching them come to grips with the Astros beating the Yankees all the damn time recently has been somewhat amusing. Four of five on the season for Houston. Now: let us see whether the talk about the Yankees still being in the playoff hunt abates any. Because dudes, if Houston is eating your lunch, you’re not a playoff team.

Angels 8, Red Sox 3: A win, yes, but losing Garrett Richards, almost certainly for the season, is a huge, huge blow for the Angels. Josh Hamilton had three RBI. Right now it’d be better if he could throw 98 miles per hour, because the Angels are going to need that way more in the season’s final month and change.


Marlins have begun extension talks with Dee Gordon

Dee Gordon
AP Photo/Alex Brandon

Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald wrote three weeks ago that the Marlins were probably going to explore an extension this winter with second baseman Dee Gordon. And it sounds like those talks are underway.

Via beat writer Joe Frisaro of

As a guest on MLB Network’s “Hot Stove” show Wednesday morning, Gordon confirmed his camp has been in talks with the Marlins regarding a multiyear deal. A source told that the discussions are preliminary and have just recently started.

“My agent is doing the talking,” Gordon said on the show. “They’re just keeping me in the loop. I think it’s going pretty well right now. We’ll see how that goes. I’m just playing the waiting game. We’re going to do the right thing.”

The 27-year-old carries three more seasons of salary arbitration, so there’s no real rush to get something done before next spring. Gordon carries quite a bit of leverage after posting a career-best .333/.359/.418 slash line in 145 games this past season for the Fish. He led all major leaguers in hits (205) and stolen bases (58).

Braves sign Bud Norris to one-year contract

Bud Norris

Bud Norris has found a home for his attempt at a bounceback season, signing a one-year deal with the Braves. Jon Heyman of says it’s worth $2.5 million, which is a huge cut from his $8.8 million salary this year.

Norris had established himself as a solid mid-rotation starter from 2009-2014, but had a brutal 2015 season split between the Orioles and Padres with a 6.72 ERA in 83 innings and a late-season move to the bullpen.

In announcing the signing the Braves referred to Norris as a starting pitcher, so joining the rotation for a rebuilding team gives him a chance to get his career back on track with an eye on hitting the open market as a free agent again next offseason. And if he fares well, the Braves could use him to add a prospect or two at the trade deadline.

The Cubs acquire Rex Brothers from the Rockies

Rex Brothers Rockies

The number of people who, if you held a gun to their head, would say that “Rex Brothers” was a game show host and/or local TV news personality from the late 1970s or early 80s is not insignificant. But if you’re a Rockies fan or if spend all day thinking about baseball you know that he’s a reliever who has played in Colorado for the past five years. Now you know him as a reliever for the Cubs:

Brothers — a former Best Shape of His Life All-Star — was pretty good until he hit a brick wall in 2014 and spent most of 2015 in Triple-A. He had something of a bounceback after being called up when rosters expanded in September, but that’s not the sort of thing to excite anyone. He could be useful for the Cubs or just spring training cannon fodder and organizational depth.

Cabrera just turned 18 a couple of weeks ago and pitched a grand total of 14 games in the Dominican Summer League. He’s young and was a $250,000 signee from the Dominican as a 16-year-old so, by definition, he’s a project. Worth giving up Rex Brothers for him if you’re the Rockies, worth risking for some depth in the pen if you’re the Cubs.

Diamondbacks hire Dave Magadan as hitting coach

Dave Magadan Rangers
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Steve Gilbert of reports that the Diamondbacks’ new hitting coach is Dave Magadan, who “parted ways” with the Rangers last month after three years filling the same role in Texas.

Magadan also previously was the Red Sox’s hitting coach and his teams have generally done pretty well, including the Rangers scoring the third-most runs in the league this year.

He’ll have plenty of talent to work with in Arizona, as the Diamondbacks scored the second-most runs in the league led by Paul Goldschmidt, A.J. Pollock, and David Peralta. Turner Ward, who had been Arizona’s hitting coach, chose to leave the team two weeks ago.