Looking back at Game 6

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Rangers fans may not want to read it, but Bob Nightengale of USA Today has a great story about Game 6 of the World Series from the Rangers’ perspective.  It’s a fantastic blow-by-blow of what went down after the Rangers left the field with a 7-5 lead at the end of the eighth inning.

And not just the baseball stuff.  The behind the scenes stuff too:

The Rangers clubhouse had morphed into a party room. Sheets of plastic lined their lockers to protect their clothes in the celebration. Cases of Budweiser with the label, “Texas Rangers, 2011 World Series champions,” were in the middle of the room. Tubs of ice were filled with champagne …

Then, when Nelson Cruz failed to reach David Freese’s triple:

MLB officials rushed into the Rangers clubhouse, ordering the celebratory champagne and beer to be stored and the plastic covering put away.

Pretty gut-wrenching stuff, but a great read.

Rays’ Yandy Díaz gets three-year, $24 million deal to avoid arbitration

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ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. – Tampa Bay Rays infielder Yandy Díaz agreed to a three-year, $24 million contract that avoided a salary arbitration hearing.

Díaz’s agreement could be worth $36 million over four seasons.

The 31-year old will receive $6 million this season, $8 million in 2024 and $10 million for 2025. The 2026 club is $12 million with no buyout. There is a $1 million assignment bonus that would be payable by receiving team.

Díaz has spent parts of six seasons in the majors with Cleveland (2017-18) and Tampa Bay (2019-22). He has a career average of .278 with 39 home runs and 198 RBIs.

Acquired by the Rays in a three-team trade on Dec. 13, 2018, Díaz hit .296 with nine homers and 57 RBIs in 137 games last season, He career highs with 71 runs, 140 hits, 33 doubles, and 78 walks.

Díaz was the third Rays’ arbitration-eligible player to reach a deal.

Reliever Pete Fairbanks agreed Friday to a $12 million, three-year contract that could be worth up to $24.6 million over four seasons. The 29-year-old right-hander was 0-0 with a 1.13 ERA in 24 appearances last year after beginning the season on the 60-day injured list with a right lat strain.

Left-hander Jeffrey Springs also agreed last week to a $31 million, four-year contract that could be worth $65.75 million over five seasons.

The 30-year-old began last season in the bullpen and transitioned to the starting rotation in May and finished 9-5 with a 2.46 ERA in 33 appearances, including 25 starts.

Tampa Bay remains scheduled for hearings with right-handers Jason Adam and Ryan Thompson, left-hander Colin Poche, and outfielder Harold Ramírez.