Armando Galarraga honored at ironic rally by pseudomedia

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Tigers pitcher Armando Galarraga was honored at the Jon Stewart/Stephen Colbert “Rally to Restore Sanity” over the weekend. The reason: his calm, non-psycho response to getting boned out of his perfect game by the Jim Joyce call.

The more time goes on, the more I am convinced that Joyce blowing that call was the best thing that ever could have happened to Galarraga. With all of the no-hitters last year, Galarraga’s perfecto could have been lost in the crowd. Indeed, given Galarraga’s overall poor season, it may have been the answer to a trivia question about “who was the worst pitcher to ever throw a perfect game” some day. At least with the blown call Galarraga has gotten (a) sympathy; and (b) attention for being a good guy as opposed to being a fluke pitcher.

Phillies owner John Middleton is in Las Vegas with Bryce Harper

Bryce Harper
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Jim Salisbury of NBC Sports Philadelphia reports that Phillies owner John Middleton flew to Las Vegas for a meeting with Bryce Harper on Friday. Per ESPN’s Jeff Passan, it’s “more of a meet-and-greet than a sign-a-deal” affair, but as the club is still at the forefront of trade rumors involving the All-Star slugger, there remains a possibility (however slight) that something could be completed in the days to come.

Even now, the Phillies aren’t alone in the race to sign Harper, but recent rumors have helped whittle down the competition from five or more teams (Phillies, Nationals, White Sox, Giants, and Padres) to three strong contenders. The Giants are said to be interested in a lucrative short-term deal with the outfielder, while the Padres remain in the conversation despite inking Manny Machado to a mammoth 10-year, $300 million contract this week. It’s not yet clear just how far either team would go to outbid Philadelphia as talks with Harper intensify.

As for the Nationals and White Sox, the former officially bowed out earlier today, and MLB Network’s Jon Heyman adds that the latter won’t make a strong play for Harper as they feel the asking price and competing offers are “getting too high” for the 26-year-old’s services. If a mystery team is still in the mix, there’s been no word on their standing with Harper in the last month or so.