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A’s reliever Sean Doolittle reviews “Rogue One”

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If you have some time to kill, here’s a straight-up review of “Rogue One: A Star Wars story” from Athletics reliever Sean Doolittle over at MLB.com.

I link this because (a) nothing else is going on; and (b) it gives me an excuse to talk about “Rogue One,” which I saw on Thursday night. No, I won’t spoil anything here. I make no promises that jerks in the comments won’t, however. Commenters are gonna comment so enter the thread at your own risk.

Anyway: I basically agree with everything in Doolittle’s review. It started a bit rocky and choppy and it was hard to follow at first. Not impossible — this is Star Wars, not a psychological thriller — but a bit bumpier than the usual spoon-fed exposition of a Star Wars flick. It gains momentum in the middle. The ending, however, is absolutely fabulous, giving us some things we’ve never seen before. Stuff we’ve always imagined playing out in the Star Wars universe but which has never been shown. That’s all I’ll say about that. Suffice it to say, the movie pays off wonderfully at the end.

As far as the normal movie review stuff: the characters, as Doolittle and other reviewers have noted, were less-than-wonderfully fleshed out, with the audience being given more in the way of archetypes than actual people. Maybe it’s enough in a Star Wars movie to have a “Hero,” a “Secondary, somewhat more reluctant and jaded hero,” a couple of stock warrior types and some comic relief. I dunno. There’s an argument to be made that the original trilogy characters were kind of lightly written too and only assumed a lot of heft by virtue of 40 years of Gen-X nostaliga doing the work that George Lucas never bothered to do. Indeed, I’d be eager to have that conversation. I can see both sides of it.

Ultimately, though, it doesn’t much matter. This is not Grand Cinema. It’s Star Wars. And as as Star Wars movie it works really well, even if it does things totally differently than any of the other seven movies in the series have done.

The Red Sox are calling up Rafael Devers

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Pete Abraham of The Boston Globe reports that the Red Sox are calling up third base prospect Rafael Devers. He’ll be in Seattle for the start of the three-game set between the Sox and Mariners.

Devers, 20, is the top prospect in the Boston system according to MLB Pipeline. He has spent most of his season with Double-A Portland, where he hit .300/.369/.575 with 18 home runs and 56 RBI in 320 plate appearances. He was promoted to Triple-A Pawtucket after the All-Star break. In eight games with Pawtucket, Devers hit .355/.412/.581 with two home runs and four RBI.

There is still just over a week until the non-waiver trade deadline, but perhaps the Red Sox seem confident Devers can be the answer to the third base problem.

Stephen Strasburg exited Sunday’s start with an apparent injury

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It’s not a good day if you’re a star starting pitcher. First Clayton Kershaw, now Stephen Strasburg. The Nationals’ right-hander lasted only two innings in Sunday’s start against the Diamondbacks, leaving with an apparent injury. Strasburg held the D-Backs to a hit and three walks with two strikeouts without allowing a run. Matt Grace relieved him in the third inning.

Including Strasburg’s two innings on Sunday, he’s carrying a 3.25 ERA with a 141/37 K/BB ratio in 121 2/3 innings.

The Nationals should pass along word on Strasburg’s condition shortly.