Settling the Scores: Tuesday’s results


The Rangers took a 4-0 lead in the first inning off of Collin McHugh, but coughed most of it back up in the second and all of it back up by the fourth when they took a 5-4 lead. But then Adrian Beltre doubled in Prince Fielder in the bottom half of the fourth and it was a whole new ballgame.

On to the ninth with Oliver Perez, pitching for the Astros to face the lefty Fielder, allowed the big man to reach on a single. Will Harris came in to pitch and promptly allowed pinch runner Drew Stubbs to make it to third on an Adrian Beltre single. Stubbs then came home on a Mitch Moreland sac fly. Watch the whole sequence and tell me that it doesn’t feel like playoff baseball has finally arrived, even if a bit early:

The Astros took over first place in the AL West on April 19 and held it until July 11. Then they returned to first place on July 29 and held it until last night. That’s pretty good for a club that lost 416 games over the previous four years. But ballplayers have short memories and, after the success they’ve had this year, not winning the division would have to feel like failure to them. So they had best hope they have a third surge to the top deep inside themselves someplace.

Here are the rest of last night’s results. Box scores here.

Rangers 6, Astros 5
Pirates 5, Cubs 4; Cubs 2, Pirates 1
Orioles 6, Red Sox 5
Nationals 4, Phillies 0
Royals 2, Indians 0
Braves 3, Blue Jays 2
Marlins 9, Mets 3
Rays 6, Yankees 3
Athletics 17, White Sox 6
Cardinals 3, Brewers 1
Tigers 5, Twins 4
Diamondbacks 6, Padres 4
Angels 4, Mariners 3
Rockies 5, Dodgers 4
Reds 9, Giants 8

MLB calls umpire union statement about Manny Machado discipline “inappropriate”

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Earlier today the Major League Baseball Umpire’s Association made multiple posts on social media registering its displeasure at what it feels was the league’s weak discipline of Manny Machado following his run-in with umpire Bill Welke. It was an unusual statement, as it’s not common for umpires, individual or via their union to comment on such matters.

This evening, in an official statement, the league called it inappropriate:

“Manny Machado was suspended by MLB Chief Baseball Officer Joe Torre, who considered all the facts and circumstances of Machado’s conduct, including precedent, in determining the appropriate level of discipline.  Mr. Machado is appealing his suspension and we do not believe it is appropriate for the union representing Major League Umpires to comment on the discipline of players represented by the Players Association, just as it would not be appropriate for the Players Association to comment on disciplinary decisions made with respect to umpires.  We also believe it is inappropriate to compare this incident to the extraordinarily serious issue of workplace violence.”

That final bit, about workplace violence, is something that I didn’t really consider when I read the umps’ statements, but it’s a damn good point. In an age where people are literally shooting up workplaces, umpires making reference to that kind of thing in response to a player throwing a bat is pretty rich indeed. And in pretty poor taste.