Settling the Score: Friday’s results

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After sitting out the 2011 season and undergoing Tommy John surgery in 2012, Jeremy Bonderman was completely off the radar coming into this season. However, after being called up to join the Mariners’ rotation late last month, Bonderman is finally back in the win column.

Bonderman held the Yankees to one run on three hits over six innings last night as part of a 4-1 victory at Safeco Field. It gave him his first win in the majors since September 8, 2010 as a member of the Tigers.

Bonderman struck out two and walked one in the surprising effort. The 30-year-old gave up one run in the first inning on a ground out and was at 50 pitches through two innings, but he managed to retire 14 out of the final 15 batters he faced.

The only offense for the Mariners came on a pair of two-run singles by Brendan Ryan and Jason Bay against Hiroki Kuroda in the fourth inning. Bay, another comeback story of sorts, has eight homers and a .748 OPS through 47 games this season. He had a .687 OPS during his time in New York.

Your Friday box scores:

Pirates 2, Cubs 0

Rangers 1, Blue Jays 6

Cardinals 9, Reds 2

Indians 5, Tigers 7

Orioles 1, Rays 2

Phillies 4, Brewers 5

Padres 9, Rockies 10

Astros 2, Royals 4

Giants 1, Diamondbacks 3

Athletics 4, White Sox 3

Braves 1, Dodgers 2 (10 innings)

Angels/Red Sox – PPD

Marlins/Mets – PPD

Twins/Nationals – PPD

Astros defend barring reporter from clubhouse

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As we wrote about this morning, last night the Houston Astros, at the request of Justin Verlander, barred Detroit Free Press reporter Anthony Fenech from the clubhouse during Verlander’s media availability following the Tigers-Astros game. After Verlander was done talking to the press in the scrum setting — and after a call was placed to Major League Baseball about the matter — Fenech was allowed in.

As we noted, this was done in violation of agreements to which Major League Baseball, the Houston Astros and the Baseball Writers Association of America are parties. The agreements are meant to ensure full access to BBWAA-accredited reporters as long as they have not violated the terms of their credentials.  In no case do the clubs — and certainly not the players — have the right to bar access to BBWAA-accredited reporters. Indeed, the whole point of the BBWAA is to ensure such access and to ensure that teams cannot bar them simply because they are unhappy with their coverage or what have you.

This morning Verlander tweeted, obliquely, about “unethical behavior” on the part of Fenech that led to his request to the Astros to bar him. As we noted at the time, such an allegation — however interesting it might be — is of no consequence to the admission or barring of a reporter. If Fenech has acted unethically it’s a matter between him and his employer and, potentially, between him and the BBWAA. At the very least, if Verlander has a specific concern, it would be incumbent upon him or the Astros to take the matter up with either the Free Press or the BBWAA.

In light of all of this, it’s hard to make a case for Verlander’s request and the Astros’ honoring it. A few moments ago, however, the Astros released as statement on the matter which, basically, says, “so what?”

Which is to say, the Astros have made a decades-long agreement between the BBWAA and MLB regarding reporter access optional, because a player does not like a reporter who is covering him.  Someone without the power to alter the BBWAA-MLB relationship has just done so unilaterally. And they have done so in such a way that any player, should they decide they don’t like a reporter, will now presumably rely on it as precedent. Finally, it should be noted that in issuing this statement, the Astros have given at least some tacit credence to Verlander’s thus far unsubstantiated and unspecified allegations of unethical behavior on the part of Fenech, which seems less-than-ideal at best.

It’s your move, Major League Baseball and BBWAA. Whatcha gonna do about it?