And That Happened: Sunday’s Scores and Highlights

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Here are the scores. Here are the highlights:

Twins 7, Blue Jays 2: Byron Buxton had tons of hype when he was a top prospect and then got a slow start in the bigs, causing some to think of him as a bust. He’s still only 23, however — over a year and a half younger than Aaron Judge — and the second half of 2017 is showing everyone that he is anything but a failed prospect. Yesterday he went 4-for-5 with three homers and five driven in. In the second half he’s hitting .333/.370/.657 with eight homers and 21 driven in. All season he has been basically the best center fielder in baseball. I think it’s safe to say Buxton has arrived.

Yankees 10, Mariners 1: The M’s made five errors in the first and the Yankees scored six runs in the first and at that point the game was basically over. Watch them all here, in their infamy. Masahiro Tanaka could’ve won a game the other team didn’t hand him, however, as he allowed one run over seven and struck out ten.

Indians 12, Royals 0: Kansas City gets shut out for the entire weekend — they were outscored 20-0 in three games —  with homers from Francisco LindorCarlos Santana, and Yan Gomes doing them in yesterday. Gomes’ blast was a grand slam. Carlos Carrasco tossed seven shutout innings. The Royals looked like they were going to give the Indians a run for a little while this season. Now they’re a game under .500, nine games behind Cleveland in the AL Central and stuck in the muck of teams battling for a second Wild Card spot. And they’re looking bad heading into the home stretch.

Pirates 5, Reds 2John Jaso and Starling Marte each drove in two for the Pirates and five pitchers bent — issuing seven walks — but kept the Reds from capitalizing on 13 base runners.

Marlins 6, Padres 2: Giancarlo Stanton hit homer number 50 on the year. It’s August. People are really gonna start up the “what if he hits 62 homers?” talk now, arguing that Barry Bonds, Sammy Sosa and Mark McGwire’s higher totals are someone not the higher totals. Don’t fall for that jazz. You can be more impressed with Stanton’s home run total than those guys’ higher totals if you’d like, but there is a difference between records, which are objective things, and feats, which are subjective. Barry Bonds is the single season home run record holder. If Giancarlo Stanton hits 62, he will have the seventh most homers in a season of all time. That’s how match and records work.

Orioles 2, Red Sox 1: The Red Sox have now lost four in a row and, while they weren’t shut out like the Royals were all weekend, they were outscored 25-4 by Baltimore, so it’s not really any better. It was at least close yesterday, as Adam Jones and Trey Mancini hit back-to-back RBI doubles in the first and then held on for the rest of the day. Boston stranded 13 runners and went 1-for-13 with runners in scoring position. Their lead in the AL East is now down to two and a half games over the Yankees.

Rockies 3, Braves 0: Jon Gray tossed six shutout innings and the pen did the rest, with a Mark Reynolds two-run homer and a Trevor Story double accounting for all of the runs.

Phillies 6, Cubs 3: Rhys Hoskins continues his rampage, hitting yet another homer. It was his 11th in his first 18 games. He started a triple play too, albeit a sort of ugly one.

Mets 6, Nationals 5; Nationals 5, Mets 4: The split doubleheader. For years they’ve amused me as the teams go to sleep having spent, like, 12 hours at the ballpark having made no progress nor suffered no setbacks in the standings. I’ve often though I should come up with a name for these beasts, but I always forget to put thought to it. Something with “zero velocity” in the title, if for no other reason than it messes with people who think velocity and speed are the same thing. I dunno. Any ideas?

White Sox 7, Tigers 1:  Lucas Giolito first game up over a year ago but yesterday he got his first win. That’s misleading of course, as he’s only made six starts, but it’s still weird to say out loud. He tossed seven scoreless innings to get it and was backed by a Matt Davidson three-run homer. The White Sox have won four of five and took two of three from Detroit.The Sox are only four games behind the Tigers in the AL Central with a little over a month to play. It’s not the sort of thing players would crow to the press about, but I bet they’ve made it a goal to try to catch them and not finish in last place. Given where the Sox are at the moment — a rebuild, having cast off most of their veteran players — that would be quite an accomplishment. And quit an embarrassment for the Tigers, though a well-earned one.

Rays 3, Cardinals 2: Logan Morrison hit two homers: one in the fourth and one for the go-ahead run in the tenth, giving him 30 and then 31 on the season. Chris Archer (7 IP, 5 H, 1 ER 8K) and Lance Lynn (7 IP, 6 H, 2 ER, 8K) had a nice little duel but didn’t figure in the decision due to it going extras.

Astros 7, Angels 5Brian McCann tripled with the bases loaded in the eighth inning to rally the Astros back from a one-run deficit after earlier blowing a 4-0 lead. Quite an effort on a day when their minds were understandably not fully focused on baseball thanks to Hurricane/Tropical Storm Harvey wreaking havoc back home. After this game they could only fly as far back as Dallas due to airport closures in Houston. They’ll make a decision today about whether tomorrow’s game in Minute Maid Park will go forward.

Athletics 8, Rangers 3: The sweep. Jharel Cotton allowed two runs — one earned — over six innings and struck out nine. Marcus Semien drove in three.

Brewers 3, Dodgers 2: The Brewers did what no other team has done since June 5-7: take a series from the Dodgers. Jimmy Nelson took a no-hit bid into the sixth inning and Hernan Perez homered and Domingo Santana had two hits and an RBI. More important than simply taking two of three from Los Angeles, the Brewers pull to two games back of the Cubs.

Diamondbacks 11, Giants 0: This was a close one until the eighth inning. That’s when Matt Cain came in in relief for the Giants and was shelled for eight runs on five hits and walked two in two-thirds of an inning. Paul Goldschmidt’s three run homer was the big blow. Normally I’d make some jokes about a rout like this, but I’m pretty sure we’re watching the end of Matt Cain’s once excellent career, and it’s hard to see guys go out like this.

Report: Orioles interested in Lance Lynn

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The Orioles singlehandedly kept the rumor mill churning this weekend. MLB Network’s Jon Morosi reports that the club is interested in making a play for free agent right-hander Lance Lynn, adding him to a list of potential candidates that also includes free agent righty Alex Cobb. The two are expected to command similar contracts in free agency, but Morosi notes that the Orioles may prefer Cobb based on his familiarity with the AL East.

Lynn, 30, is two years removed from Tommy John surgery on his right elbow. Despite missing the 2016 season, he bounced back with a respectable 11-8 record in 33 starts and complemented his efforts with a 3.43 ERA, 3.8 BB/9 and 7.4 SO/9 over 186 1/3 innings for the 2017 Cardinals. He lost several days with a blister on his pitching hand in early September, but managed to avoid any major injuries and can reasonably be expected to shoulder another heavy workload in 2018.

Lynn may not be the Orioles’ first choice to beef up their starting rotation, but there’s no doubt that he’ll be in high demand as one of very few viable starters on the market this winter. The veteran righty rejected his one-year, $17.4 million qualifying offer from the Cardinals on Thursday and will likely be seeking a multi-year contract, one that Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch estimates around five years and $100+ million. If the Orioles are willing to bite that bullet, they’ll still need to compensate the Cardinals with their third pick in next year’s draft.