Bill Baer

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Dodgers minor leaguer Jair Jurrjens suspended 80 games after testing positive for exogenous Testosterone

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Major League Baseball announced on Thursday evening that Dodgers minor league pitcher Jair Jurrjens has been suspended 80 games after testing positive for exogenous Testosterone.

Jurrjens, 31, signed a minor league deal with the Dodgers at the end of March after pitching for Team Netherlands in the World Baseball Classic. At Triple-A Oklahoma City, the right-hander compiled a 4.64 ERA with a 44/18 K/BB ratio in 54 1/3 innings.

As there are fewer than 80 games left in the minor league season, this suspension basically ends Jurrjens’ season and he’ll have to serve out the remainder next season.

Athletics fire pitching coach Curt Young, hire Scott Emerson

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The Athletics announced on Thursday afternoon that pitching coach Curt Young has been relieved of his duties and replaced by Scott Emerson.

The Athletics’ pitching has been among the worst in baseball, carrying an aggregate 4.83 ERA. The rotation ERA is 4.66 while the bullpen ERA is an unsightly 5.07. While Jesse Hahn and Sean Manaea have had decent results, Jharel Cotton has struggled mightily and Sonny Gray hasn’t quite returned to 2015 form.

Young, 57, spent 10 of his 11 seasons in the majors between 1983-93 with the Athletics. In 2004, he was named the Athletics’ pitching coach and held that position until 2010. He was named the Red Sox pitching coach, but lasted only one year there before returning to the A’s in 2012, the position he’s held ever since until today.

Emerson, 45, had been serving as the Athletics’ bullpen coach since the 2015 season. He pitched in the minor league systems of the Orioles and Red Sox from 1992-96, then went into coaching starting in 2000.

Pirates, Rockies benches empty

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Tempers flared between the Pirates and Rockies during Wednesday night’s game at PNC Park. In the bottom of the fifth inning, with the Rockies leading 3-0, starter German Marquez clearly unintentionally hit Francisco Cervelli with a first-pitch fastball.

There had been no prior offense from either team. While Cervelli stared at Marquez for a brief second, home plate umpire Chris Conroy was already in front of the plate, ready to stop anything from happening. However, catcher Tony Wolters started talking to Cervelli. Cervelli didn’t like what Wolters was saying. Botch teams’ benches and bullpens emptied, but nothing happened beyond some terse words being exchanged.

The three-game set between the two teams ended on Wednesday night. The Pirates and Rockies won’t meet again until after the All-Star break for a three-game weekend series in Colorado, so we’ll have to wait over a month to see if any grudges are held.