Blue Jays right-hander Scott Copeland was terrific in his first major league start Wednesday afternoon against the Marlins, firing seven innings of one-run ball in a 7-2 win at Rogers Centre in Toronto. The 27-year-old former 21st-round pick walked none, whiffed four, and scattered six hits over his seven frames. Justin Smoak, Josh Donaldson, and Russell Martin each went 2-for-4 and combined for five RBI.
It’s the eighth straight victory for the Jays, who are now just three games back of the first-place Yankees in the American League East standings. Copeland was sent to Triple-A Buffalo after the game, but he should get another shot soon.
Wednesday’s matinee assignment was only meant to be a spot start for Copeland.
Your box scores and AP recaps from Wednesday …
Phillies 2, Reds 5
Marlins 2, Blue Jays 7
Nationals 5, Yankees 4 (11 innings)
Cardinals 4, Rockies 2
Red Sox 2, Orioles 5
Brewers 0, Pirates 2
Padres 1, Braves 4
Angels 2, Rays 4
Giants 8, Mets 5
Mariners 9, Indians 3
Cubs 12, Tigers 3
Royals 7, Twins 2
Astros 1, White Sox 4
Rangers 4, Athletics 5
Diamondbacks 7, Dodgers 6
The Pittsburgh Pirates have hired Ben Cherington as the team’s new general manager. They do so after the general manager meetings ended, but better late than never.
Cherington served as GM of the Boston Red Sox for four years, winning the World Series in 2013, but resigned during the 2015 season after Dave Dombrowski was named Boston’s new president of baseball operations. Which was a defacto demotionn for Cherington who, until then, had the final say in baseball decisions. Dombrowski, of course, was fired late in the season this year. Cherington went on to work for the Toronto Blue Jays as a vice president, but was seen as biding his time for another GM position. Now he has one.
Cherington takes over in Pittsburgh for executive vice president and general manager Neal Huntington, who was fired after a 12 years at the helm. Also fired was team president Frank Coonelly. Travis Williams replaced Coonelly recently. While the Pirates experienced a few years of contention under Huntington and Coonelly, they have slid out of contention in recent years as the club has traded away promising players for little return, all while cutting payroll. There’s a very big rebuilding job ahead of Cherington.
The first move he’ll have to make: hire a manager, as the team still hasn’t replaced Clint Hurdle since he was dismissed in the final weekend of the regular season.