Settling the Score: Friday’s results

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The cream is rising to the top in the National League East.

While the Nationals had their five-game winning streak snapped yesterday against the Cubs, the Braves topped the Diamondbacks by the score of 8-2 last night. It was Atlanta’s eighth straight victory and their 10th win in their last 11 games.

Ervin Santana allowed two runs over 7 1/3 innings in the victory while the Braves’ offense pounded out 12 hits. Freddie Freeman had a pair of RBI singles to lead the charge.

The Braves are back to 10 games over .500 for the first time since late April and currently sit at 48-38 on the year, 1 1/2 games ahead of the Nationals for the division lead. With the Marlins, Mets, and Phillies all fading, it should be a two-team battle for most of the summer.

Your Friday box scores:

Diamondbacks 2, Braves 5

Cubs 7, Nationals 2

Yankees 6, Twins 5

Phillies 2, Pirates 8

Blue Jays 0, Athletics 1 (12 innings)

Giants 0, Padres 2

Royals 7, Indians 1

Brewers 2, Reds 4

Rays 6, Tigers 3

Marlins 2, Cardinals 3

Mariners 1, White Sox 7

Rangers 5, Mets 6

Astros 6, Angels 7

Dodgers 9, Rockies 0

Orioles/Red Sox – PPD

Padres fire Andy Green

Andy Green
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The Padres fired manager Andy Green on Saturday, per an official team release. Bench coach Rod Barajas will step into the position for the remaining eight games of the 2019 season.

Executive Vice President and GM A.J. Preller gave a statement in the wake of Green’s dismissal:

I want to thank Andy for his tireless work and dedication to the Padres over the last four seasons. This was an incredibly difficult decision, but one we felt was necessary at this time to take our organization to the next level and expedite the process of bringing a championship to San Diego. Our search for a new manager will begin immediately.

In additional comments made to reporters, Preller added that the decision had not been made based on the Padres’ current win-loss record (a fourth-place 69-85 in the NL West), but rather on the lack of response coming from the team.

“Looking at the performance, looking at it from an improvement standing, we haven’t seen the team respond in the last few months,” Preller said. “When you get to the point where you’re questioning where things are headed … we have to make that call.”

Since his hiring in October 2015, Green has faced considerable challenges on the Padres’ long and winding path to postseason contention. He shepherded San Diego through four consecutive losing seasons, drawing a career 274-366 record as the club extended their streak to 13 seasons without a playoff appearance. And, despite some definite strides in the right direction — including an eight-year, $144 million pact with Eric Hosmer, a 10-year, $300 million pact with superstar Manny Machado, and the development of top prospect Fernando Tatís Jr. — lingering injuries and inexplicable slumps from key players stalled the rebuild longer than the Padres would have liked.

For now, they’ll prepare to roll the dice with a new skipper in 2020, though any potential candidates have yet to be identified for the role. It won’t come cheap, either, as Green inked a four-year extension back in 2017 — one that should have seen him through the team’s 2021 campaign.