Justin Verlander: not a big fan of Marlon Byrd right now

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Justin Verlander has consistently spoken out against PED users in his midst and in quite vivid and uncompromising terms. So it is no surprise that, in the wake of Marlon Byrd‘s suspension today, Verlander has an opinion.

It’s a pretty short one, though. In fact, it’s just an emoji:

In this case, it’s quite possible that Verlander is not merely mad about the ethics of cheating in the game he loves. It may be personal. For you see, Byrd hit a big, tie-breaking and ultimately game-winning homer off of Verlander back on April 22:

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I’d probably post an angry face emoji if I were Verlander too. Among other things.

Free agent slugger José Abreu signs 3-year deal with Astros

Kamil Krzaczynski-USA TODAY Sports
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HOUSTON — Jose Abreu and the World Series champion Astros agreed to a three-year contract, adding another powerful bat to Houston’s lineup.

Abreu, the 2020 AL MVP, spent his first nine major league seasons with the Chicago White Sox. The first baseman became a free agent after batting .304 with 15 home runs, 75 RBIs and an .824 OPS this year.

With the Astros, he replaces Yuli Gurriel at first base in a batting order that also features All-Star sluggers Yordan Alvarez, Jose Altuve, Alex Bregman and Kyle Tucker.

Gurriel became a free agent after Houston defeated the Philadelphia Phillies this month for its second World Series championship.

The 35-year-old Abreu becomes the biggest free agent to switch teams so far this offseason. Born in Cuba, the three-time All-Star and 2014 AL Rookie of the Year is a .292 career hitter in the majors with 243 homers, 863 RBIs and an .860 OPS.

The Astros announced the signing. Abreu is scheduled to be introduced in a news conference at Minute Maid Park.