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And That Happened: Tuesday’s scores and highlights

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Here are the scores. Here are the highlights:

Dodgers 9, Phillies 3:  Howie Kendrick, Yasmani Grandal and Justin Turner homered. In other news, Clayton Kershaw last pitched for the Dodgers on June 26. They were eight games back of first place on that date. The Dodgers are 23-13 since then, which is the best record in baseball over that stretch. ¯_(ツ)_/¯ What I do know, though, is that this win, combined with the Giants loss, puts the Dodgers in first place in the NL West. It’s their first time in first place since May 14.

Rangers 7, Rockies 5: Colorado had a 5-1 lead heading into the seventh and then the Rangers scored six runs in the final three innings, capped by an Elvis Andrus go-ahead RBI single in the eighth. Texas scored three times in the ninth to beat the Rockies 4-3 on Monday night too, so I’m guessing the Rockies’ bullpen is happy to see the Rangers leave town.

Indians 3, Nationals 1: There was a lot going on here. First Terry Francona had chest pains before the game and had to sit this one out as a precautionary measure, then Max Scherzer took a no-hitter into the seventh. For his part, Trevor Bauer took a shutout into the seventh before handing it over to Andrew Miller and the Tribe pen. Miller, coming in in the seventh, was arguably being used as an old-style relief ace, appearing at a high leverage moment instead of just in the eighth or ninth inning. He gave up a homer here but it’d be neat to see what happens if the Tribe truly deploys him Rich Gossage-style.

Pirates 6, Padres 4: Gregory Polanco hit a tiebreaking three-run homer in a four-run fifth and rookie Chad Kuhl allowed two runs and five hits while striking out four and walking four. Polanco was batting cleanup, which is not usual for him. Clint Hurdle was asked about it and cited Polanco’s RBI Percentage which, yes, is a thing, but which I can’t remember hearing a manager mentioning before.

Rays 9, Blue Jays 2Evan Longoria reached base four times, scored twice and drove in three. Logan Forsythe had three hits and drove in two. The Rays scored six runs off the Jays’ pen.

Red Sox 5, Yankees 3: The Red Sox crowd chanted “WE WANT A-ROD!” but — hear me out for a second — I feel like they just wanted him to come out so they could boo him. Sorry I’m so cynical. A-Rod did not play, of course, and Joe Girardi got a lot of questions about that and A-Rod himself was kind of cranky about that but if we just close our eyes and forget about it for a while it’ll all be over soon. In the part of the game that actually mattered, Dustin Pedroia tied the game with an RBI double in the third and gave the Sox breathing room with an RBI double in the fifth. That scored Andrew Benintendi, who had just put the Sox ahead on his 3-for-3 night. He’s 8-for-16 in his first six games as a big leaguer, by the way.

Diamondbacks 5, Mets 3: Zack Greinke came off the disabled list and pitched for the first time in six weeks, allowing three runs over six innings and striking out six. He’s 11-3 now, having won his eighth straight. Paul Goldschmidt and Brandon Drury homered for the Snakes.

Marlins 2, Giants 0: Tom Koehler shut the Giants out for seven innings and the pen handled the final two. The Giants are 14-18 since the beginning of July and 7-16 since the break. They’re now in a first place tie with L.A. They haven’t been out of first place, tied or alone, since May 10.

Cubs 5, Angels 1: The Cubs are making it look easy. They take their eighth straight, enjoying eight one run innings from John Lackey, at least insofar as anyone truly “enjoys” anything associated with John Lackey. Buster Olney gives us some fun factoids about the State of the Cubs:

Braves 2, Brewers 1: Tyrell Jenkins allowed one run over six and for the second night in a row Atlanta’s bullpen looked sharp and shut Milwaukee out over the final frames. The Braves still have the worst record in baseball, but they are 6-2 in August and 12-12 since the break. That’s some serious progress for these guys. They’re not going to contend next year, but this little run is at least giving me hope that they’ll be watchable. That’s some serious progress too.

Astros 7, Twins 5: Jose Altuve went 4-for-4 and scored twice. He’s hitting .361 and has a .998 OPS. Carlos Correa drove in four runs. It was the Astros’ first homer in eight games.

White Sox 7, Royals 5: The Royals tied things up with a rally in the bottom of the ninth, but Todd Frazier hit a three-run homer in the 10th to moot that. Justin Morneau went 4-for-5. Frazier is hitting only .213 but is tied for the major league lead with 31 homers. That’s 20-teens baseball in a nutshell. It’d probably give guys from the 1950s an aneurysm.

Reds 7, Cardinals 4: Tyler Holt doubled off Matt Bowman to break a 4-4 tie in the eighth as the Reds rallied. Billy Hamilton was a disruptive force once again, as his speed on an infield hit caused Matt Carpenter to bobble a barehanded attempt to field it, allowing Holt to score from second right after his double. Hamilton had two hits and two walks, scored three times and stole three bases. After Monday’s game Mike Matheny blamed himself for the team being unable to contain Hamilton. I’m guessing he’ll be going back to the drawing board once again. Highly touted pitching prospect Alex Reyes made his big league debut for the Cards, hitting 101 on the gun on two pitches.

Athletics 2, Orioles 1Danny Valencia and Khris Davis each drove in a run in the A’s two-run third, and it held up. The Athletics won consecutive games for the first time since July 26-27. Wade Miley has allowed six runs on 14 hits in 11 innings since joining the Orioles.

Mariners 6, Tigers 5: Detroit had a 4-1 lead in the eighth before Kyle Seager hit a three-run homer off of Justin Wilson which led to six bonus frames in this nearly five hour game. Victor Martinez homered in the top of the 15th but that didn’t hold up as Seattle rallied for two runs on two hits (and a walk) off of the struggling Francisco Rodriguez. The walkoff came via a Mike Zunino sac fly. Seattle is seven back in the west but only 2.5 back in the Wild Card. Detroit has lost three in a row and is no longer in Wild Card position, sitting a game back of the Red Sox, mostly because of their pen. What else is new?

Max Scherzer: ‘There’s no reason to engage with MLB in any further compensation reductions’

Max Scherzer
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MLBPA player representative Max Scherzer sent out a short statement late Wednesday night regarding the ongoing negotiations between the owners and the union. On Tuesday, ownership proposed a “sliding scale” salary structure on top of the prorated pay cuts the players already agreed to back in March. The union rejected the proposal, with many worrying that it would drive a wedge in the union’s constituency.

Scherzer is one of eight players on the MLBPA executive subcommittee along with Andrew Miller, Daniel Murphy, Elvis Andrus, Cory Gearrin, Chris Iannetta, James Paxton, and Collin McHugh.

Scherzer’s statement:

After discussing the latest developments with the rest of the players there’s no reason to engage with MLB in any further compensation reductions. We have previously negotiated a pay cut in the version of prorated salaries, and there’s no justification to accept a 2nd pay cut based upon the current information the union has received. I’m glad to hear other players voicing the same viewpoint and believe MLB’s economic strategy would completely change if all documentation were to become public information.

Indeed, aside from the Braves, every other teams’ books are closed, so there has been no way to fact-check any of the owners’ claims. Cubs chairman Tom Ricketts, for example, recently said that 70 percent of the Cubs’ revenues come from “gameday operations” (ticket sales, concessions, etc.). But it went unsubstantiated because the Cubs’ books are closed. The league has only acknowledged some of the union’s many requests for documentation. Without supporting evidence, Ricketts’ claim, like countless others from team executives, can only be taken as an attempt to manipulate public sentiment.

Early Thursday morning, ESPN’s Jeff Passan reported that the MLBPA plans to offer a counter-proposal to MLB in which the union would suggest a season of more than 100 games and fully guaranteed prorated salaries. It seems like the two sides are quite far apart, so it may take longer than expected for them to reach an agreement.