Mariano Rivera to be given the Commissioner’s Historic Achievement Award before Game 2

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The official news: Mariano Rivera will be given the Commissioner’s Historic Achievement Award during the pregame of tonight’s game. The award recognizes “contributions of historical significance in Major League Baseball.”  And Rivera certainly has those.

The question: according to the release, the last time this was given out was in 2011 to Ken Griffey Jr. Kinda surprised there was no one else around last year they could have honored.  Makes me wonder if this is baseball’s version of a gold watch to notable players more than anything, as we didn’t have that level of a retirement happen last season.

Not that it matters. I just wonder about such things.

Brandon Morrow injured his back taking off his pants

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The Cubs’ bullpen got into trouble in the ninth inning on Tuesday afternoon during the first game of a doubleheader. Justin Wilson started the inning with the Cubs leading 3-2, normally a situation for closer Brandon Morrow. Wilson issued a leadoff walk to Austin Barnes, then gave up a single to Justin Turner. Morrow wasn’t warming up, curiously. Wilson ended up giving up a go-ahead two-run double to pinch-hitter Kyle Farmer and the Cubs went on to lose 4-3.

We now know why Morrow wasn’t available. He says his back tightened up taking off his pants early Monday morning, MLB.com’s Carrie Muskat reports. Morrow said, “It’s frustrating any time you can’t get out there, especially when you can’t go for something as stupid as taking your pants off.”

Morrow, 33, has been terrific in the closer’s role this season for the Cubs. He owns a 1.59 ERA with a 25/9 K/BB ratio in 22 2/3 innings. He is also not available for the back end of Tuesday’s doubleheader, but it sounds like he won’t need to go on the disabled list.