Bob Davidson screws up a double switch, costs the Cardinals a hitter

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The Cardinals beat the Marlins in extras last night, but umpire Bob Davidson made it all the harder when he screwed up a double-switch made by Mike Matheny which cost the Cards Allen Craig.

The short version: when Matheny put reliever Victor Marte into the game, he signaled “five” with his hands, meaning that he was taking over David Freese’s position in the lineup, with Freese being the third baseman or the five-position, defensively (he was batting seventh). After a batter had batted, however, Marlins manager Ozzie Guillen came out and said told Davidson that Matheny meant the five-hole in the lineup, which had been occupied by Allen Craig.

Davidson inexplicably agreed with Guillen regarding what Matheny meant, said that the pitcher was supposed to be batting fifth now and that Allen Craig had to leave the game. This later led to the Cardinals having to use a pitcher to pinch hit in extra innings. Which worked out — he got an RBI — but still.

Later the on-field mics picked up Davidson telling Ozzie that he “f****d up,” and that Matheny had, in fact, told him that he wanted the pitcher in the seven-hole. Too late, of course.

Just another day in Mr. Davidson’s neighborhood.

Astros extend winning streak to 11 games

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The Astros rallied late to keep their winning streak alive, extending it to 11 games with a 7-4 victory over the Royals on Sunday afternoon. The club is now 48-25, leading the Mariners by a full game in the AL West.

The Royals took a 4-2 lead after three innings, but Brian McCann knocked in a run with a single in the top of the fourth to cut the deficit to one run. Carlos Correa hit a game-tying solo home run in the eighth. The Astros kept their foot on the gas, scoring two more runs on RBI singles from Evan Gattis and Marwin Gonzalez in the top of the eighth and another in the top of the ninth on Correa’s sacrifice fly.

Starter Lance McCullers allowed four runs (two earned) on six hits and two walks with nine strikeouts over six innings. Tony Sipp worked a scoreless seventh. Ken Giles did the same in the eighth. Hector Rondon finished off the win in the ninth, working around a one-out walk with a game-ending double play.

After winning all 10 games on their road trip against the Rangers, Athletics, and Royals, the Astros will head home for a nine-game homestand against the Rays, Royals, and Blue Jays. Each club is below .500.