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Marwin Gonzalez has homered in five straight starts

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Astros utilityman Marwin Gonzalez homered in his fifth consecutive start on Thursday, belting a solo home run in the fourth inning of a 10-4 loss to the Rangers. He got the start in left field and later moved to right field.

Gonzalez homered on April 27 against the Indians, when he started at second base. His next start, on the 30th against the Athletics, he homered as a third baseman. On May 2 versus the Rangers, he drilled two homers as a left fielder. And yesterday, he homered in his start at first base.

After Thursday’s action, Gonzalez is batting .266/.368/.719 with nine home runs, 21 RBI, 11 runs scored, and two stolen bases in 78 plate appearances. That, along with his playing five different positions, has made him quite valuable to the Astros.

Padres, Mariners join list of teams to extend netting

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The Reds announced earlier that they plan to extend the protective netting at Great American Ball Park in time for Opening Day next season. You can add the Padres and Mariners to what will surely be a growing list.

A young fan was struck in the face by a foul ball at Yankee Stadium on Wednesday, which gave new life to the netting debate. Some fans and media types think Major League Baseball is not doing enough to protect fans. While Major League Baseball has issued guidelines for protective netting, it is ultimately up to the teams to decide just how much netting to use.

Zach Britton receives stem cell injection, likely done for the season

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Orioles closer Zach Britton is likely done for the remainder of the 2017 season after receiving a stem cell injection in his left knee, Peter Schmuck and Jon Meoli of the Baltimore Sun report. Britton has been battling knee problems for most of the season.

The Orioles are still technically in the AL Wild Card race, entering play Thursday 5.5 games behind the Twins for the second Wild Card slot. With only nine games remaining, however, the 73-80 Orioles are likely being realistic about their chances and not taking any unnecessary risks with Britton.

Britton, 29, put up a 2.89 ERA with 15 saves and a 29/18 K/BB ratio in 37 1/3 innings this season. He will be eligible for arbitration for the fourth and final time this offseason.