Michael Morse does a bit of mime work

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Nationals slugger Michael Morse hit a grand slam in the top of the first inning Saturday against the Cardinals’ Kyle Lohse. But the ball barely cleared the right field wall at Busch Stadium and was initially ruled a base hit, which caused some confusion on the basepaths. Thus, we get probably the best highlight since replay for home runs was instituted:

There’s nothing in the rule book that requires that sort of thing, but the umpires wanted to be sure that all of the bases were touched and that no one was lapped. And Morse was apparently asked to mimic a swing to start the runners. It seemed to draw laughter, then boos, from the sold-out crowd in St. Louis.

The Nats defeated the Cards in 10 innings by a score of 6-4 to earn their 96th win of the season.

Padres trade Brad Hand, Adam Cimber to the Indians for Francisco Mejia

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Ken Rosenthal reports that the San Diego Padres have traded closer Brad Hand and reliever Adam Cimber to the Cleveland Indians. In return the Padres are getting top catching prospect Francisco Mejia.

Hand, the Padres’ All-Star closer, has a 3.05 ERA and 65/15 K/BB ratio and 24 saves over over 44.1 innings of work this season. In addition to helping an Indians bullpen which has struggled mightily this season, Hand will provide an insurance policy for the next two seasons given that both Andrew Miller and Cody Allen are due to hit free agency this winter. Hand, meanwhile, is under contract for this year and next for a total of $13.5 million, with a $10 million club option for 2021.

Cimber is another fine reliever who, along with Hand, suddenly transforms the Indians’ bullpen. He’s a 27-year-old rookie, but he’s been a very useful one this year, posting a 3.17 ERA in 42 games, with a K/BB ratio of 51/10 in 48.1 innings. He’s pitched even better than that of late and has been particularly hard on righties. He’s under team control through 2023.

In Mejia, the Padres are getting the Indians’ top hitting prospect. A catcher — though not necessarily a great defensive one — Mejia has struggled in brief stints in the big leagues thus far but is a .291/.344/.438 hitter in six minor league seasons and, at times, has shown star potential. He turns 23 in October.

A nice piece for the Padres in the long term and an immediate upgrade to the Indians’ bullpen in the short term. In short: a baseball trade.