Japanese high school baseball game goes 50 innings; starters throw 700 pitches each

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Via Deadspin, a data point that Japanese baseball is a bit different than what we’re used to. Specifically, a high school game which lasted 50 innings and was played over four separate days. It was 0-0 through 49 innings and ended with a score of 3-0 following a 50th inning rally by the visiting team.

The kicker: the same two starting pitchers pitched all 50 innings each. Which, even though it was broken up over four days, is a crazy, crazy workload. One pitcher tossed 709 pitches. The other threw 689.

So, yeah, that happened.

Report: Twins sign Erick Aybar to minor-league deal

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The Twins have reportedly signed free agent shortstop Erick Aybar to a minor-league deal,¬†LaVelle E. Neal III of the Star Tribune¬†reported Friday. FanRag Sports’ Jon Heyman adds that the deal comes with a potential $1.25 million if Aybar reaches the majors, with additional incentives based on plate appearances. He’ll be able to opt out on March 27. The team has yet to confirm the signing.

Aybar, 34, is now four years removed from his career year in 2014. He’s been in a state of steady decline since then, slashing just .234/.300/.348 with seven home runs and 11 stolen bases over 370 plate appearances for the Padres in 2017. His poor performance wasn’t helped by a fractured left foot, either, which cost him almost six weeks on the disabled list.

Still, the Twins see something promising in the veteran infielder, and reportedly intend to use him as another utility option this spring. Per Neal, Aybar will join fellow backup infielders Eduardo Escobar and Ehire Adrianza and may even (temporarily) take over for Miguel Sano at third base if Sano isn’t able to shape up for the role by Opening Day.