Ben Zobrist is one of the Cubs’ “biggest targets”

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Via Gordon Wittenmyer of the Chicago Sun-Times:

While the Cubs keep their eye on the pitching market as they mull a buyer’s approach for the trade deadline, one of their biggest targets heading into June is play-anywhere hitter Ben Zobrist of the Oakland Athletics, according to multiple sources.

Zobrist is capable of playing all over the diamond, so he’s a fit for just about every contending team. But the 34-year-old has a direct connection to Cubs manager Joe Maddon, who managed Zobrist when he was with the Rays, and Wittenmyer notes that Chicago actually tried to acquire Zobrist over the winter.

If the A’s go into early sell mode — their record right now is 19-33 — this could come together quickly.

Zobrist is scheduled to become a free agent five days after the conclusion of the 2015 World Series.

Nationals’ Strasburg ejected for arguing from the stands

Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports
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NEW YORK — A pitcher getting ejected for arguing balls and strikes – on his day off? And, from the stands?

Nationals star Stephen Strasburg earned one of baseball’s most unique ejections – probably ever – in the third inning of Washington’s game against the New York Mets on Thursday.

Strasburg was sitting in Section 121 at Citi Field in this socially distant season because he’s scheduled to start Friday against Baltimore Orioles. He was apparently unhappy with the strike zone of plate umpire Carlos Torres after Austin Voth‘s 2-2 pitch to Pete Alonso on the outside corner was ruled a ball.

Moments later, Torres ejected last year’s World Series MVP, though it took a few seconds to realize who had been tossed.

Someone was heard yelling: “You’re (expletive) brutal” shortly before television cameras captured Strasburg doffing his cap as he walked up the staircase on his way out of the park.

“Sorry, folks – sorry, FCC,” Mets broadcaster Gary Cohen said on SNY.

The usually stoic Strasburg appeared to be grinning underneath his blue mask as he made his exit.