Associated Press

MLB players depart for a goodwill tour of Cuba today

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Several current and former baseball players, as well as Joe Torre and other baseball officials, head to Cuba today, for a three-day goodwill tour put together by Major League Baseball and the MLB Players Association.

The visiting party will include several Cuban major leaguers including Jose Abreu, Brayan Pena and Alexi Ramirez and Cuban-American Jon Jay. In his story about the tour, Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch says that Yasiel Puig may also attend, though it is not certain that he would. Also in attendance will be Clayton Kershaw, Miguel Cabrera, Nelson Cruz, Dave Winfield and many others. The party leaves from Miami today. Over the next three days they will conduct children’s baseball clinics and participate in charity events.

Baseball’s last interaction with Cuba came in 1999, when the Orioles and the Cuban National Team played a home-and-home series in Havana and Baltimore. Since then, the primary mode of interaction between Cuba and U.S. baseball has consisted of Cuban players, such as Pena, Abreu and Puig, defecting in order to play in the United States. With the thawing of U.S.-Cuban relations in the past year, however, the door is now opening for a more normalized relationship. It begins with this tour.

Orioles set new MLB record with 259th home run allowed

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Update (9:04 PM EST): The game went into a rain delay with one out in the bottom of the fifth inning of a 2-2 tie, so the game isn’t official yet. Which means the Orioles aren’t yet the official record holders.

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A third-inning solo home run by Austin Meadows off of Asher Wojciechowski on Thurday night marked the 259th home run Orioles pitching has allowed this season, setting a new major league record, per MASN’s Roch Kubatko. The previous record was held by the 2016 Reds at 258. Willie Adames hit No. 260, a game-tying solo shot in the fifth inning. The Orioles will have 34 more games to add on to their record after tonight.

The Yankees have famously accounted for 61 of the 260 home runs (23.5%) against Orioles pitchers this season. The Red Sox are next at 28 followed by the Twins and Blue Jays at 23 each.

David Hess has accounted for the most home runs on the O’s staff, yielding 28 dingers. Dylan Bundy is next at 25 homers allowed.

The Orioles are not the only team that will pass the 2016 Reds. The Mariners are on pace to allow 275 home runs. The Yankees, 266. Phillies, 262. Angels, 259. Pretty amazing.