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And That Happened: Saturday’s Scores and Highlights

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Here are the rest of Saturday’s scores and highlights:

Dodgers 7, Mets 4: The Mets have yet to win one against the Dodgers this season, and it may have something to do with L.A.’s historic run. The Dodgers improved to a league-best 78 wins on Saturday, overcoming the Mets’ initial three-run lead with a comeback effort from Rich Hill and a seven-run rally that featured home runs from Chris Taylor, Cody Bellinger, Yasiel Puig, Justin Turner and Corey Seager. Per MLB.com’s Anthony DiComo and Ken Gurnick, they’ve taken “12 of their last 13, 23 of 26 and 43 of 50, the best 50-game MLB stretch since the 1912 New York Giants.” The 1912 New York Giants, of course, went on to drop the World Series to the rival Red Sox, but for now, it’s a good omen for the best team in baseball.

Cubs 7, Nationals 4: The Cubs may not be running away with the division this year, but they don’t appear ready to relinquish their first-place ranking just yet. Alex Avila cranked his first home run with the club during Saturday’s win, rounding out a four-run first inning that gave the Cubs the boost they needed to snap a three-game losing streak.

Brewers 3, Rays 0: The Brewers posted back-to-back shutouts on Friday and Saturday, extending their pitchers’ streak to 22 scoreless innings with a shutdown performance from Zach Davies. It’s just enough to keep them on the Cubs’ tail, though they haven’t been able to close that half-game gap and retake the division lead just yet.

Orioles 5, Tigers 2: Tim Beckham helped the Orioles to another collective franchise milestone on Saturday, capping the team’s win with their third home run of the night and their 10,000th regular season blast.

His historic home run followed a record-setting shot on Thursday, when Beckham’s eighth-inning dinger ricocheted into right field for the 2,500th home run by an Orioles player at Camden Yards.

Padres 5, Pirates 2: The Pirates are still in the running for the NL Central title, but they won’t be getting there anytime soon — at least, not if Dinelson Lamet and the Padres have anything to do with it. San Diego snared their first win of the series behind 5 2/3 scoreless frames from their rookie right-hander, and supplemented his efforts at the plate with a pair of homers from Wil Myers and Dusty Coleman. Unfortunately for the Padres, playing spoiler to other NL teams is about as exciting as their 2017 season will get, as they currently sit nearly 14 games back of the wild card and almost a full 30 behind the NL West leaders.

Red Sox 4, White Sox 1: Drew Pomeranz lifted the Red Sox to their fifth consecutive win on Saturday, firing 6 1/3 innings of one-run ball and striking out eight batters en route to his 11th win of the year. Unlike his six-inning, one-run loss to the Royals last week, Pomeranz was treated to adequate run support and a solid backing by the bullpen, who set down 2 2/3 scoreless innings to preserve the Sox’ three-run lead. Then again, it must be easy to pull off a win when your opponents look… well, a little lifeless:

Braves 7, Marlins 2: Giancarlo Stanton muscled another home run into the stands of SunTrust Park on Saturday, but his 446-footer barely put a dent in the Braves’ seven-run effort. The rest of the Marlins’ lineup was frustrated by Mike Foltynewicz, who whiffed 11 batters in 6 1/3 innings for the Braves’ 51st win of the year.

Yankees 2, Indians 1: There’s only so much Danny Salazar can reasonably be expected to do. On Saturday, those reasonable expectations included seven innings of 12-strikeout, one-run ball, during which the Indians tried and failed to procure more than a single run. Chase Headley‘s eighth-inning blast sealed their fate, giving the Yankees a one-run lead to carry them to their 58th win of the season.

Cardinals 4, Reds 1: The Cardinals moved within five games of the division lead on Saturday, taking their first game of the series with a solid performance from Lance Lynn and Paul DeJong‘s two-run shot in the third inning. It was a rare display of power for the club, who ranks 21st in the league with 126 home runs and entered Saturday without a single 15-homer player on their roster.

Rangers 4, Twins 1: Cole Hamels came one run shy of a ‘Maddux’ on Saturday, wielding 96 pitches in a complete game effort on Saturday evening. His attempt was foiled in the fifth inning, when Byron Buxton and Ehire Adrianza netted the Twins’ first and only run on a productive out. Robinson Chirinos, whose throwing error helped position Buxton for the run, also helped pad Hamels’ lead, going 1-for-3 with a sac fly and RBI single.

Blue Jays 4, Astros 2 (10 innings): Josh Reddick clubbed his 11th home run, Tyler White collected his third blast of the year, and Charlie Morton matched Marco Estrada pitch-for-pitch on the mound, but in the end, it all came down to a game of tag between Rob Refsnyder and Brian McCann:

Rockies 8, Phillies 5: The Rockies cruised to their third straight win on Saturday, helping themselves to a five-run lead after batting around in the first inning. Jon Gray went seven strong with one run and four strikeouts, but found his seven-run lead partially erased on a three-run jack from Daniel Nava in the eighth inning:

The Phillies grabbed a final run off of Pat Neshek in the ninth, but still fell three runs shy for their second loss of the series.

Giants 5, Diamondbacks 4 (10 innings): The last time Pablo Sandoval appeared for the Giants, he went 3-for-3 in a Game 7 nail-biter to help clinch the 2014 World Series. Saturday’s homecoming was bound to be less auspicious, but Sandoval still made it count: he went 1-for-3 with a double and scored a run on Jarrett Parker‘s RBI double in the seventh inning. He also committed a costly error in the fifth inning and overthrew the first base bag to send opposing starter Taijuan Walker home to score. Luckily, Parker was there to bail the Giants out again in the 10th inning, plating a walk-off RBI single to move the club within 36 games of first place.

Athletics 5, Angels 0: The Athletics spoiled the Angels’ four-game win streak on Saturday, backing Paul Blackburn‘s scoreless outing with Dustin Garneau’s RBI single, a handful of miscues by the Angels and a pair of standout defensive snags from Andrelton Simmons:

Four of the A’s five runs came via wild pitch, error, force attempt and stolen base. Outfielder Mark Canha recorded the club’s final run with his second stolen base of the year, swiping home on a double steal after the ball popped out of Martin Maldonado‘s glove at the plate:

Mariners, Royals (postponed): Rain kept the field soggy and the baseball players away on Saturday afternoon, forcing the Royals to squeeze a doubleheader into their plans on Sunday. They had nothing on the New Orleans Baby Cakes, however, whose catcher was spotted swimming through the dugout after the field was submerged:

And That Happened: Monday’s Scores and Highlights

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After you jump into the recaps, make sure you check out our rundown of trade deadlines winners and losers.

Here are the scores. Here are the highlights:

Astros 14, Rays 7Jake Marisnick hit two homers and drove in four. He’s the Astros’ number nine hitter, folks. Derek Fisher homered, singled and doubled, driving in two. He’s a rookie, folks. Charlie Morton got the win, allowing two runs over six innings. He’s Charlie Morton, folks. The Astros can even beat you with their B-team.

Phillies 7, Braves 6Odubel Herrera hit a three-run shot to make it 4-0 in the third. Maikel Franco hit a solo shot. The Phillies are 5-0 since they began a series of trades that rid them of Jeremy Hellickson, Pat Neshek, Joaquin Benoit and Howie Kendrick. The lesson I’m gonna choose to take from this: never let anyone tell you that wisdom and experience matters. Just go out and do your thing.

Red Sox 6, Indians 2:  Mookie Betts drove in three and Eduardo Nunez drove in two. Rookie Rafael Devers was 4-for-4 with a double and he singled in a run. He’s now 10-for-24 with two doubles and two homers in six big-league games. After the game he said, “sometimes out there I’ll close my eyes and make contact, and wherever it goes, that’s where it goes.” There are some life lessons to be found in there too, I suspect.

Yankees 7, Tigers 3: Luis Severino remains on a roll, allowing one run over five innings and striking out eight. The Yankees scored four in the fourth via two-run hits from Chase Headley and Todd Frazier. Aaron Judge homered in the fifth. Another lesson can be seen both here and in the Red Sox game. In Boston, Devers knocked in the guy whose acquisition was supposed to force his demotion in Eduardo Nunez. Here both Headley and the guy who was supposed to make him superfluous, Frazier, drove in runs. I think we can look at this and—-*16 ton weight falls on Craig’s head, ending this cosmic b.s. for the day*—

Orioles 2, Royals 1: Danny Duffy and Ubaldo Jimenez dueled for seven innings, each allowing one run while striking out six. In the ninth, Joakim Soria got got, however, as Caleb Joseph, Ruben Tejada and Craig Gentry all hit singles, with Gentry’s driving in Joseph for the walkoff win.

Nationals 1, Marlins 0: Gio Gonzalez took a no-hitter into the ninth inning and, after giving up a single to Dee Gordon, made way for Sean Doolittle to close it out. Bryce Harper singled in the game’s only run in the sixth. Jose Urena pitched well for Miami in the loss, allowing only that lone run on three hits in eight innings of his own. The game lasted a mere two hours and twelve minutes.

Mariners 6, Rangers 4: This one was tied at four in the ninth inning when Robinson Cano singled in two. Leonys Martin drove in two as well. Cole Hamels and Felix Hernandez combined to give up eight runs in eleven and a third innings. I’m so old when I remember that the two of them facing off would mean a pitchers duel.

White Sox 7, Blue Jays 6: Toronto held a 6-1 lead heading into the bottom of the eighth, thanks in large part to Marco Estrada‘s one run, seven inning performance. At that point the Jays bullpen came into play and the White Sox’ bats woke up. Matt Davidson hit a two-run blast, Yolmer Sanchez hit a solo shot and Jose Abreu singled in a run in the eighth. In the ninth, Abreu singled in the tying run and Davidson singled in the winning run to complete the comeback and walk things off. It was Davidson’s second walkoff hit in as many days, as he homered to win the Sox-Indians game on Sunday.

Athletics 8, Giants 5: The A’s were down 3-2 in the bottom of the sixth when Marcus Semien connected for a grand slam. Jed Lowrie had three hits and an RBI, Ryon Healy added a two-run single and Matt Joyce reached base four times and scored twice. The A’s won even though the guy who was supposed to start for them last night — Sonny Gray — got shipped to the Yankees befre the game. With this loss, the Giants now have the worst record, by winning percentage, in all of baseball.

Winners and losers of the trade deadline

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Winners

Los Angeles Dodgers

The Dodgers gave up what seems like a lot for Yu Darvish – top prospects Willie Calhoun, A.J. Alexy, and Brendon Davis – but the club is clearly primed for a run at the World Series and adding Darvish only helps those chances. You may fight for a World Series in 2022, but a lot can happen between now and then.

Additionally, Calhoun doesn’t have the glove to stick at second, making him a future corner outfielder or DH. The Dodgers’ outfield is spoken for and moving to the American League as a DH may be the best thing for Calhoun’s future. Alexy and Davis are still many years away from the majors such that the Dodgers shouldn’t be banking on them in any significant way.

Darvish, meanwhile, is a time-tested starter and although he’s just a year and a half separated from recovering from Tommy John surgery, he’s shown he is still a fearsome right-hander. He has a 4.01 ERA this year, which seems mediocre, but ERA retrodictor like FanGraphs’ FIP and xFIP and Baseball Prospectus’ DRA all see him as having pitched better than his results indicate. Furthermore, the Dodgers’ rotation is currently missing ace Clayton Kershaw, Brandon McCarthy, and Scott Kazmir. Rich Hill dealt with blisters all of last year and Hyun-Jin Ryu is not a picture of perfect health. Adding a No 1.5, so to speak, in Darvish not only adds production, but stability.

But that’s not all the Dodgers did. The Dodgers also snagged lefties Tony Watson and Tony Cingrani from the Pirates and Reds, respectively. While the Dodgers’ bullpen was already strong – its 2.83 aggregate ERA is second-best in baseball – adding two lefties to the roster never hurts. Watson has held left-handed batters to a .569 OPS over his career, Cingrani .712. Teams have clearly seen the success other teams had had, like last year’s Indians and Cubs, playing match-ups with the bullpen. The Dodgers are looking to emulate that strategy in the post-season this October.

New York Yankees

The Yankees acquired third baseman Todd Frazier and relievers David Robertson and Tommy Kahnle from the White Sox two weeks ago. They added Jaime Garcia from the Twins on Sunday. And ahead of Monday’s deadline, they acquired Sonny Gray from the Athletics. In the White Sox trade, the Yankees gave up No. 3 prospect Blake Rutherford and No. 19 prospect Ian Clarkin along with Tyler Clippard. The Yankees sent Zack Littell (now the Twins’ No. 16 prospect) and Dietrich Enns. For Gray, the Yankees surrendered Dustin Fowler (now the Athletics’ No. 3 prospect), Jorge Mateo (No. 5), and James Kaprelian (No. 11).

Like the Dodgers, it seems like a lot. Due to all of the relatively recent baseball media covering prospects, teams and fans alike had begun to covet potential stars a little too highly. Now, we’ve seemed to reach an equilibrium. Teams aren’t hoarding prospects as much as they used to just a few years ago and are now willing to make a sacrifice in an attempt to win now. It’s a healthymidpoint between mortgaging the future and steadfastly refusing to compete. The Yankees stand at 56-47, just a half-game ahead of the Red Sox in the AL East. They’re only 3.5 up on the Rays. If the Yankees were to slip in the AL East, they’d have to compete with the Royals, Rays, Mariners, Orioles, Twins, Angels, and Rangers who are all within five games of the AL Wild Card.

Frazier provided an immediate upgrade at third base, bringing his above-average bat to the hot corner, replacing Chase Headley’s .715 OPS and the meager .448 Ronald Torreyes put up in 51 plate appearances. Robertson, of course, is familiar to the Yankees, having pitched there from 2008-14. He put up solid but unimpressive numbers over two and a half seasons with the White Sox, but is still a quality right-handed reliever who can handle high-leverage situations and record a couple of strikeouts when necessary. Kahnle has been one of baseball’s hidden gems, carrying a 2.18 ERA with a nice 69/7 K/BB ratio in 41 1/3 innings. The only qualified reliever with a higher strikeout rate than Kahnle is Craig Kimbrel. Add Kahnle and Robertson to a bullpen that already has Aroldis Chapman, Adam Warren, and Dellin Betances. The Yankees’ bullpen is not going to be fun to face in a post-season game.

Colorado Rockies

Dark horse winner here. Could’ve gone with the division rival Diamondbacks just as easily for adding J.D. Martinez. The Rockies are 60-46 but 14.5 games behind the Dodgers for first place in the NL West. They are clearly focused on the Wild Card, where they hold a 5.5-game lead over the Brewers for the second slot and are only a half-game back of the D’Backs for the first. The Rockies added Jonathan Lucroy from the Rangers, upgrading their weakest position. While Lucroy was having the worst season of his career, hitting .242/.297/.338 in Texas, Rockies catchers weren’t any better as Tony Wolters musterd a .642 OPS in 67 games, Ryan Hanigan .673 in 24, Dustin Garneau .613 in 22, and Tom Murphy .236 in eight. At least Lucroy has a long track record of hitting and it’s reasonable to expect him to get out of his funk before the season is over.

The Rockies also acquired Pat Neshek from the Phillies. Neshek was the Phillies’ lone All-Star, compiling a 1.12 ERA with a 45/5 K/BB ratio in 40 1/3 innings, emerging as one of few bright spots on the roster of baseball’s worst team. Moving to Coors Field from Citizens Bank Park is not nearly as bad as it would be moving from most other ballparks. Plus, Neshek is striking hitters out at a 30.5 percent clip while walking them 3.3 percent. His average of 9.4 strikeouts per walk is baseball’s fifth-best rate among qualified relievers. Missing bats and rarely putting base runners on for free are two great traits to have if you’re going to pitch at Coors Field.

Losers

San Diego Padres

The lowly Padres, 47-58, were expected to be among the more active sellers leading up to the deadline, but only managed one trade. They sent pitchers Brandon Maurer, Ryan Buchter, and Trevor Cahill to the Royals for Travis Wood, Matt Strahm, and Esteury Ruiz. Ruiz barely snuck onto the Padres’ top 30 prospects list. Strahm is out for the rest of the year with an injury, and Wood is a veteran swingman.

Most prominently, lefty reliever Brad Hand remained untraded. Hand was the Padres’ lone representative at the All-Star Game and took over the closer’s role when Maurer was traded. He compiled six saves with a 2.00 ERA and a 70/14 K/BB ratio in 54 innings. Not trading him by today’s 4 PM ET deadline means the club will either have to move him through waivers between now and August 31 or trade him in the offseason. While there were a handful of solid relievers that changed addresses within the last week, few threw from the left side with Hand’s rate of success.  He could’ve been this year’s Andrew Miller. Instead, he’ll close out meaningless games for the final two months of the season most likely.

Boston Red Sox

The Red Sox didn’t stand pat going into the deadline. The club acquired third baseman Eduardo Nunez from the Giants and reliever Addison Reed from the Mets. The addition of Nunez is solid insurance in case prospect Rafael Devers doesn’t live up to the hype. Nunez had a .752 OPS in San Francisco before the trade, helping upgrade Boston’s most problematic position. Reed put up a 2.57 ERA in 49 innings of relief with the Mets.

It would have really helped if the Red Sox were able to add a starting pitcher, though. Right now, the rotation is still fearsome as it features Chris Sale, Rick Porcello, Eduardo Rodriguez, and Drew Pomeranz. Sale has a 2.37 ERA and could be the AL Cy Young Award winner when all is said and done. Rick Porcello is still the defending Cy Young winner despite an unimpressive 4.55 ERA. Pomeranz has stayed healthy through 21 starts with a 3.46 ERA and Rodriguez has been solid with a 4.16 ERA. David Price will help when he’s healthy.

Pomeranz, though, is no perfect picture of health as he battled a forearm injury after the club acquired him from the Padres last summer. Price may not be reliable coming back from his elbow injury. Rodriguez has been solid but unspectacular through parts of three seasons. Adding a Darvish or Gray would’ve gone a long way towards helping the Red Sox keep pace with the Yankees in the AL East, but after the moves the Yankees made, they’re the clear favorites in the division for the final two months.

Miami Marlins

The Marlins are in a tough spot right now. Ownership is in flux as Jeffrey Loria is still in the process of selling the team. Trade rumors have swirled around most of its standout players, including Giancarlo Stanton, Marcell Ozuna, Christian Yelich, Dee Gordon, Martin Prado, Brad Ziegler, and Dan Straily. The club only made two trades, however, sending David Phelps to the Mariners for a handful of minor leaguers, as well as A.J. Ramos to the Mets for two prospects. They got their No. 6 (Merandy Gonzalez), No. 8 (Bryan Hernandez), No. 20 (Brandon Miller), No. 23 (Pablo Lopez), and No. 24 (Ricardo Cespedes) prospects in the deals.

If the Marlins got those players from Phelps and Ramos, imagine what they could’ve gotten for the others. The Marlins already have $95 million committed to the roster for next season, $84 million in 2019 and $74 million in 2020. That means that new ownership will have significant financial obligations to account for when taking over from Loria. Trading those expensive veterans is not only best for them, taking them out of a confusing situation, but helps with the transition. Everyone is tired of the Marlins holding a fire sale, but in this case, it would have made a lot of sense.

Trading Stanton would’ve been the most difficult thing to do as he is signed through 2027 to a $325 million contract. But trading the others was very realistic, even if it meant taking less than perfect value in trades. Prado, Gordon, Straily, and Ziegler almost certainly won’t be part of the next great Marlins team, so keeping them around is a loss, but at least the club still has the next month to work out deals via waivers.