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Report: Royals could be interested in Pedro Alvarez

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The Royals could give the Orioles some competition for free agent Pedro Alvarez‘s services in 2017, per a report from the Boston Globe’s Nick Cafardo. While the infielder/DH is still in talks with Baltimore, Cafardo doesn’t see the club making a push to re-sign the veteran slugger until late in the offseason. Whether or not they pursue Alvarez hinges somewhat on fellow former Oriole Mark Trumbo, who has yet to settle on a landing spot for the upcoming season.

Alvarez maintained a .249/.322/.504 batting line in 2016, hitting 22 home runs and a career-best .826 OPS in 376 PA with the Orioles. He’s attracted interest around the AL East, with both the Rays and Red Sox linked to the 29-year-old, though nothing serious appears to have materialized just yet. He could fit well within the Royals’ lineup, which has a gaping hole at DH since Kendrys Morales took a three-year, $33 million deal with the Blue Jays last month.

Umpire ejects Adrian Beltre for moving on-deck circle

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As far as ejections go, this is one of the stranger ones you’ll hear about. Rangers third baseman Adrian Beltre was ejected in the bottom of the eighth inning of a game his team trailed at the time 18-6. Beltre was a few feet away from the circle towards home plate and was asked by Marlins pitcher Drew Steckenrider to get into the circle. So rather than step a few feet back to his right, Beltre picked up the circle and dragged it to where he was. And that got him ejected by second base umpire Gerry Davis. Manager Jeff Banister was also ejected after having a word with Davis.

Here’s a video from Jeff Passan of Yahoo Sports:

Beltre, by the way, went 3-for-3 with a walk, a pair of doubles, and a solo home run. He’s now four hits away from 3,000 for his career.

Video: Phillies prospect J.P. Crawford hits an inside-the-park grand slam

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Phillies shortstop prospect J.P. Crawford’s stock has fallen sharply this season. He had an abysmal first three months, batting .203/.321/.276 in 291 plate appearances. Baseball America rated him the 12th overall prospect in baseball going into the season and rated him No. 92 in their midseason top 100. It was bad.

Since the calendar turned to July, however, Crawford has been more like his normal self. In 92 at-bats this month entering Wednesday night’s action, he was hitting .300/.391/.650 with six home runs, 13 RBI, 18 runs scored, and a terrific 15/12 K/BB ratio.

Crawford padded his stats more on Wednesday night as he circled the bases for an inside-the-park grand slam. Via the IronPigs Twitter:

Crawford was actually dead-to-rights at home, but he fooled the catcher with a great late slide.

Crawford finished 1-for-3 with a walk along with the slam on the night as the IronPigs beat the Gwinnett Braves 8-2.