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And That Happened: Tuesday’s scores and highlights

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Here are the scores. Here are the highlights:

Red Sox 5, Orioles 2: It was 2-1 in the seventh when David Ortiz hit a three-run homer, helping the Sox to their sixth straight win. Boston now has a four-game lead over Toronto and a five-game lead over Baltimore in the AL East with 11 games left to play. For the Orioles, Trey Mancini homered in his major league debut. There was some video of his mom freaking out in the stands after he did it. At one point those “moms in the stands cheering on players in their major league debut” videos showed old ladies. Now, suddenly, they show attractive women who, if I were so inclined, would be age-appropriate for me to ask out on a date. Must be a glitch. Someone should look into that. It’s somewhat troubling.

Braves 5, Mets 4: Four wins in a row for a Braves team on which, a few months ago, I would’ve bet my life would lose 100 games. Now they’re almost certainly not going to, which speaks to just how long and strange and unpredictable a baseball season can be. The Mets, stymied by Julio Teheran once again, fall into a three-way tie with San Francisco and St. Louis for the two NL wild cards.

Cardinals 10, Rockies 5: There’s helping your own cause and then there’s what Adam Wainwright did, driving in four, with a two-run double and a two-run single. Matt Adams and Jedd Gyorko homered, but they didn’t pitch at all, so advantage: Wainwright.

Giants 2, Dodgers 0: Congratulations, Giants: your bullpen didn’t blow a close game this time! Not that things are all rosy: Johnny Cueto had to leave with a strained groin and Brandon Crawford left with a dislocated finger. Eduardo Nunez and Brandon Belt each hit solo shots.

Phillies 7, White Sox 6Odubel Herrera homered, had three hits in all and drove in three. Tommy Joseph and Roman Quinn drove in three between them. Not bad for what, statistically, is the worst offense in the National League.

Indians 2, Royals 1: Brandon Guyer with a pinch-hit, walkoff RBI single. That brings the Indians magic number down to six. If they beat the Royals tonight, the World Series champs will be eliminated.

Marlins 1, Nationals 0: Jose Fernandez tosses eight shutout innings, striking out 12. I’m not sure what the Marlins latest thinking is on this guy — in the past it’s been suggested that they’d trade him before he could reach free agency — but if they wanted to trade him this winter, they’d get a freakin’ haul.

Yankees 5, Rays 3: The Bombers post a four-run seventh inning powered by homers from Mark Teixeira and Gary Sanchez. Which makes me realize that that may have been the last time I write Mark Teixeira’s name in one of these recaps. Wait, THAT was the last time I write Teixeira’s name. Wait.

Rangers 5, Angels 4: Rangers starter A.J. Griffin had to leave early due to illness, but Nick Martinez was solid out of the pen. How solid? This solid:

[mlbvideo id=”1177896683″ width=”600″ height=”336″ /]

Nomar Mazara hit a go-ahead, two-run homer for the Rangers. This one got chippy too. After Mike Trout got hit by a pitch early, THREE Rangers batters were hit, eventually leading to the ejection of Mike Scioscia and Brett Oberholtzer. I guess that’s fair if you assume that Trout is three times better than anyone else. There are exchange rates for everything. At one point in there a Rangers pitcher threw behind the head of Andrelton Simmons too. I hope all those men feel more manly and validated now.

Cubs 6, Reds 1: Anthony Rizzo drove in three and Jon Lester won his 18th game. There was a bit of a scare as he was hit by a comebacker and doubled over at one point. Turns out the lefty was hit in his right hand. After the game he said “it’s my right hand, I don’t need it.” He could’ve said “that’s why God gave me two,” which is a line from an underrated movie I always think of in these sort of situations. If anyone knows the movie, put it in the comments.

Pirates 6, Brewers 3Andrew McCutchen, Jody Mercer and Josh Bell each drove in two. The Pirates have won five of six and are back at .500 which I suppose is something worth celebrating, even if it comes too late to matter.

Tigers 8, Twins 1: Matt Boyd allowed one run over eight innings and James McCann and Miguel Cabrera each homered, with three-run and two-run shots, respectively. Detroit is back one and a half games in the Wild Card with 12 games to go.

Astros 2, Athletics 1: George Springer singled in the go-ahead run in the top of the 10th, set up by Tony Kemp‘s leadoff double. Kemp provided the Astros only other run with an RBI double in the seventh.

Blue Jays 10, Mariners 2: Edwin Encarnacion homered and doubled in two. Russell Martin and Michael Saunders each drove in two of their own. Seattle has teased all year and then, when they’ve had a chance to make a real move on a playoff spot, they’ve failed to deliver. Has to be frustrating for M’s fans.

Padres 5, Diamondbacks 2: Adam Rosales homered and drove in four. Then, in a tribute to the earlier part of his career, he was signed and released by Oakland and Texas 12 times before the game was over. Weird, but that’s his lot in life.

Report: Some MLB teams using outside labs for COVID-19 testing

MLB COVID-19 testing
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The Athletic’s Ken Rosenthal and Zach Buchanan report that the Diamondbacks are one of several teams that have used labs other than the Sports Medicine Research and Testing Laboratory in Utah to process COVID-19 testing. MLB has encountered delays with its testing, despite promising 24-hour turnaround time, so teams have tried other avenues — with the league’s endorsement — in order to get faster results.

The SMRTL had processed performance-enhancing drug screenings for MLB. The league converted it to process COVID-19 tests amid concerns that having a season and all of the testing that would be required throughout would take away testing resources from the general public. That some teams are utilizing labs other than the SMRTL suggests the league, indeed, is usurping those resources.

In prospect Seth Beer’s case, he tested positive for COVID-19. He needed to test negative twice consecutively to be cleared to return to play. Beer went to a third-party site in the Phoenix area. He received his second negative test and was cleared to return on July 9.

The Diamondbacks said that the labs they have used have assured them that they are not taking away tests from the public. That seems like a claim MLB and the D-Backs should demonstrably prove. Per Rosenthal and Buchahan, the D-Backs have gone to an outside lab about 20 times, which accounts for less than one percent of COVID-19 tests taken by players and staff. Still, those are 20 tests that could have been used by the general public. And if the D-Backs and a handful of other teams already are using outside labs, then the rest of the league likely already is or soon will be doing the same. In the end, there will be a lot more than 20 tests taken at outside labs by MLB players and staff. Considering that “Tier 1” players will be tested every other day throughout the season, the total of third-party tests taken — if things continue the way they are now — could easily reach into the thousands by the end of October.

We all want baseball back, but the players, coaches, and all other staff are no more important than cashiers, teachers, and delivery drivers, so they shouldn’t have more access to COVID-19 testing simply by virtue of being associated with Major League Baseball and all of its influence and financial muscle. It would be unethical for MLB to be cutting in line ahead of other people who need testing just as much as if not more than the players.