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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?

Nationals GM Rizzo won’t reveal length of Martinez’s new contract

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WASHINGTON — Dave Martinez spoke Saturday about managing the Washington Nationals for “many, many years” and over the “long term” and “quite some time,” thanks to his contract extension.

Sharing a table to a socially distanced degree with his manager on a video conference call to announce the new deal – each member of the duo sporting a 2019 World Series ring on his right hand – Nationals GM Mike Rizzo referred to the agreement’s “multiyear” nature, but repeatedly refused to reveal anything more specific in response to reporters’ questions.

“We don’t talk about terms as far as years, length and salaries and that type of thing. We’re comfortable with what we have and the consistency that we’re going to have down the road,” said Rizzo, who recently agreed to a three-year extension of his own. “That’s all we want to say about terms, because it’s private information and we don’t want you guys to know about it.”

When Martinez initially was hired by Rizzo in October 2017 – his first managing job at any level – the Nationals’ news release at the time announced that he was given a three-year contract with an option for a fourth year.

That 2021 option had not yet been picked up.

“The partnership that Davey and I have together, our communication styles are very similar. Our aspirations are similar, and kind of our mindset of how to obtain the goals that we want to obtain are similar. I think it’s a good match,” Rizzo said. “We couldn’t have hit on a more positive and enthusiastic leader in the clubhouse. I think you see it shine through even in the most trying times.”

The Nationals entered Saturday – Martinez’s 56th birthday – with a 23-34 record and in last place in the NL East, which Rizzo called “a disappointing season.” The team’s title defense was slowed by injuries and inconsistency during a 60-game season delayed and shortened by the coronavirus pandemic.

World Series MVP Stephen Strasburg threw just five innings because of a nerve issue in his pitching hand and players such as Starlin Castro, Sean Doolittle, Tanner Rainey, Adam Eaton and Carter Kieboom finished the year on the IL.

“This year, for me, we didn’t get it done. We had a lot of bumps in the road this year. But I really, fully believe, we’ve got the core guys here that we need to win another championship,” Martinez said. “I know Mike, myself, we’re going to spend hours and hours and hours trying to fill the void with guys we think can potentially help us in the future. And we’ll be back on the podium. I’m really confident about that.”

Rizzo was asked Saturday why the team announces contract lengths for players, as is common practice around the major leagues, but wouldn’t do so in this instance for Martinez.

“The reason is we don’t want anybody to know. That’s the reason,” Rizzo said, before asking the reporter: “How much do you make? How many years do you have?”

Moments later, as the back-and-forth continued, Rizzo said: “It’s kind of an individual thing with certain people. I don’t want you to know what I make or how many years I have. Davey doesn’t want you to know. And I think that it’s only fair … when people don’t want certain information out there, that we don’t give it.”

There were some calling for Martinez to lose his job last season when Washington got off to a 19-31 start. But Rizzo stood by his manager, and the team eventually turned things around, going 74-38 the rest of the way to reach the playoffs as an NL wild-card team.

The Nationals then beat the Milwaukee Brewers, Los Angeles Dodgers and St. Louis Cardinals to reach the World Series, where they beat the Houston Astros in Game 7.

Washington joined the 1914 Boston Braves as the only teams in major league history to win a World Series after being 12 games below .500 during a season.

“Everything from Day 1 to where he’s gotten to now, he’s grown so much. He’s really become one of my favorite managers of all,” three-time Cy Young Award winner Max Scherzer said after helping Washington win Saturday’s opener of a doubleheader against the New York Mets. “Davey really understands how to manage a clubhouse, manage a team. We saw it in the postseason. He knows how to push the right buttons when everything is on the line.”