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Pirates sign Ivan Nova for three years, $26 million

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Robert Murray of FanRag Sports reports that Ivan Nova has signed with the Pittsburgh Pirates for three years and $26 million. He will get a $2 million signing bonus.

That’s a lot cheaper than many suspected he’d get after his solid performance following his trade to Pittsburgh last season. Nova started slow with the Yankees, posting a 4.90 ERA in 15 starts and six relief appearances but posted a 3.06 ERA in 11 starts for the Pirates while striking out 52 and walking just three in 64.2 innings.

Nova is basically J.A. Happ, right? Happ had a crappy first half of 2015, went to Pittsburgh and fixed himself in 11 great starts, just like Nova. And yet Nova got $10 million less than Happ got on his three year deal with the Blue Jays a year ago.

Oh well.

Brian Dozier, Todd Frazier, and Didi Gregorius say teams should expand protective netting

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Earlier, a young fan was struck by a foul ball at Yankee Stadium and had to be carried out before being taken to a hospital. Fortunately, it seems that the fan is okay.

As usual, when a scary incident such as today’s occurs, players come out in full support of expanding the protective netting at ballparks. Twins second baseman Brian Dozier as well as Yankees third baseman Todd Frazier and shortstop Didi Gregorius all said as much after Wednesday afternoon’s game.

Phillies shortstop Freddy Galvis has also been a very vocal proponent of increased netting. For the most part, the players are pretty much all in agreement about the subject. It’s only a vocal minority of fans who seem to think that their ability to snag a random souvenir or have an unimpeded view supersedes the safety of their neighbors.

Video: Giancarlo Stanton hits a laser for his 56th home run

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Marlins outfielder Giancarlo Stanton continued his march towards 60 home runs, hitting No. 56 in Wednesday afternoon’s win against the Mets. The Marlins, leading 7-2 prior to Stanton’s two-run blast in the bottom of the eighth, didn’t need the extra run support but welcomed it all the same. Mets reliever Erik Goeddel tossed a 1-1, 78 MPH curve that caught too much of the plate.

After Wednesday’s action, Stanton is batting .279/.378/.634 with 120 RBI and 116 runs scored along with the 56 dingers in 646 plate appearances. The last player to hit at least 56 home runs in a season was Ryan Howard (58) in 2006. Stanton’s is the 19th player-season of at least 56 homers.