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New smokeless tobacco ban will affect Busch Stadium

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A new ban will prohibit all smokeless tobacco products at sports venues in St. Louis, Koran Addo of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports. The bill was approved by the Board of Aldermen on Friday and is expected to take effect in all high school, college and professional stadiums within the city limits — including the Cardinals’ Busch Stadium.

Under the ban, players, staff and fans will not be able to use any smokeless tobacco products, including chew, snuff and dip. A $100 fine will be levied for a first offense, followed by $250 for a subsequent violation and $500+ for any violation after that.

The measure will make St. Louis the ninth U.S. city with such a ban and will make the Cardinals the 12th MLB team to prohibit smokeless tobacco products in their stadium. While the new Collective Bargaining Agreement stipulates that new players must abstain from smokeless tobacco, several cities have not yet enacted a ban that extends to everyone within their sports venues.

California is expected to enforce a similar law that was passed by Gov. Jerry Brown in October 2015. The statewide ban will take effect in Anaheim, Oakland and San Diego prior to the 2017 season.

A 30-year-old rookie won his major league debut

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The Dodgers beat the Twins last night thanks to a Cody Bellinger three-run homer. But Bellinger was not the only Dodgers rookie who had a notable game. A far more unconventional one is worth mentioning as well.

That rookie is reliever Edward Paredes, who made his big league debut last night. What makes him unconventional: he’s 30. Turns 31 in September, actually. Paredes pitched professionally for 12 years before making it to The Show. Most of that time was in the affiliated minors in the Mariners, Indians, Angels and Dodgers organizations. He spent time in the independent Atlantic League in 2013-15 as well.

Paredes did not do anything heroic last night. It was more of a right place/right time kind of appearance, retiring the side in order with a fly out, line out and a ground out and remaining the pitcher of record while Bellinger hit that three-run homer. That’s enough for a W, though. A W that Paredes waited a lot longer for than most pitchers who notch one in the bigs.

The Nationals could pursue Sonny Gray

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Jon Morosi of MLB Network says that the Nationals could pursue Athletics right-hander Sonny Gray if Stephen Strasburg‘s forearm issue lingers. Strasburg left Sunday’s start early due to forearm tightness, saying he was unable to get loose. Sometimes that’s a sign of a major injury. Sometimes it’s just a thing that happens and then goes away.

The Nationals will have to make a determination as to how big a deal this all is pretty soon, though, as a lot of other teams, including the Yankees, Brewers and Astros have all been linked to Gray. It seems inevitable at this point that the A’s will move their ace before Monday’s trade deadline.

Gray is set to start tonight. It may very well be his last in an A’s uniform.