The A’s and Oakland poised to strike a deal. Thanks to Bud Selig saying the A’s could leave town immediately

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The Oakland A’s have been trying to get Major League Baseball to allow them to move to San Jose for over five years now. That approval has not been and likely never will be forthcoming. But, when the Oakland City Council was poised to reject the team’s new lease for the Oakland Coliseum today, Selig did give them at least some form of approval to move. It was to Bluff City, U.S.A, but still:

The Athletics and Oakland appeared headed for a last-minute deal Thursday morning after the A’s owner informed city and county leaders that had received permission from baseball commissioner Bud Selig to immediately move the team out of Oakland unless a deal was approved.

I’d reckon that permission did not include an actual location where the A’s could go — and if the permission actually scared the Oakland City Council, God, who are these people and why don’t they read up on Major League Baseball’s politics more often — but I guess if it works it works.

And it appears to have worked. The City Council is expected to approve the lease extension today.

Video: Starling Marte refuses to take first base after being hit by pitch

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Pirates outfielder Starling Marte was hit on the hand by a Jack Flaherty pitch in the fourth inning of Tuesday night’s game against the Cardinals. Rather than take first base, Marte — who came to the plate with a runner on first base — insisted to home plate umpire Bruce Dreckman that the ball hit the knob of the bat, not his hand. Marte was allowed to continue his at-bat, though manager Clint Hurdle came out to discuss the ruling with Dreckman. Marte eventually grounded into a fielder’s choice. He then got caught attempting to steal second base and the Pirates scored zero runs in the inning.

According to Baseball Prospectus, a team that has runners on first and second with no outs is expected to score 1.55 runs. Having a runner on first base with one out yields 0.56 expected runs. Marte essentially cost his team a run by rejecting first base. Oops.