And That Happened: Tuesday’s scores and highlights

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Rangers 7, Astros 0: Part of me feels like if the Rangers didn’t score all those runs in the eighth and ninth innings that Darvish would have been fresher and finished this thing off. Part of me feels like if he wasn’t facing the Astros that it would have been over in the sixth. But that’s all silliness. Yu was flat dealing and as the man said: one extra flare — just one gorp. A groundball. A groundball with eyes. A dying quail — just one more dying quail a week… and your perfect game is gone. But it was still friggin’ fantastic.

Indians 4, Blue Jays 1: This game, played indoors, was delayed 25 minutes at the outset. I can only presume this had something to do with Geddy Lee throwing out the first pitch. No doubt he threw the pitch, stepped aside for a 17 minute drum solo then, as the time signature changed three times in two minutes, he launched into some lyrics about a future dystopia. Then the game happened and R.A. Dickey’s knucklers led to J.P. Arencibia to allow about a gajillion passed balls. But relax, Jays fans: it’s only one game. There is not yet any unrest in the forest or trouble with the trees.

Orioles 7, Rays 4: A five-run seventh inning topped off with a three-run homer from Chris Davis kicks the O’s season off in style. This was the O’s first win not led by the bullpen and lady luck since 1970. True story.

Rockies 8, Brewers 4: Bad bullpen work for the second straight day for Milwaukee. It’s like 2012 all over again. Troy Tulowitzki hit a homer and drove in his third and fourth for the year, reminding people that, oh yeah, he’s amazingly good. Ryan Braun hit a homer too. Good thing the Rockies won this one or else Braun’s homer would have led a bunch of self-righteous columnists to call for the game to be vacated.

Cardinals 6, Diamondbacks 1: Homers from Matt Holliday, Pete Kozma and Jon Jay. Including one that is totally gonna get this guy dumped.

Giants 3, Dodgers 0: Koufax on Monday, Marichal on Tuesday. Wait, I mean Kershaw and then Bumgarner (8 IP 2H, 0ER, 0BB, 6K).

Mariners 7, Athletics 1: Michael Morse had two homers and drove in four.  I have this theory that Morse is gonna have a big season for Seattle and, though he came there in a trade, will help convince some free agent hitters that it’s OK to sign with the Mariners because your offense won’t totally shrivel up. Granted this was a road game, but I still like my theory.

MLB rejected Players’ 114-game season proposal, will not send a counter

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Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic reports that Major League Baseball has rejected the MLBPA’s proposal for a 114-game season and said it would not send a counter offer. The league said it has started talks with owners “about playing a shorter season without fans, and that it is ready to discuss additional ideas with the union.”

This should be understood as a game of chicken.

The background here is that the the owners are pretty much locked into the idea of paying players a prorated share of their regular salaries based on number of games played. The players, meanwhile, are pretty much locked in to the idea that the owners can set the length of the season that is played. Each side is trying to leverage their power in this regard.

The players proposed a probably unworkable number of games — 114 — as a means of setting the bidding high on a schedule that will work out well for them financially. Say, a settled agreement at about 80 games or so. The owners were rumored to be considering a counteroffer of a low number of games — say, 50 — as a means of still getting a significant pay cut from the players even if they’re being paid prorata. What Rosenthal is now reporting is that they won’t even counter with that.

Which is to say that the owners are trying to get the players to come off of their prorated salary rights under the threat of a very short schedule that would end up paying them very little. They won’t formally offer that short schedule, however, likely because (a) they believe that the threat of uncertain action is more formidable; and (b) they don’t want to be in the position of publicly demanding fewer baseball games, which doesn’t look very good to fans. They’d rather be in the position of saying “welp, the players wouldn’t talk to us about money so we have no choice, they forced us into 50 games.”

In other news, the NBA seems very close to getting its season resumed.