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And That Happened: Tuesday’s Scores and Highlights

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Here are the scores. Here are the highlights:

White Sox 4, Yankees 1: The Sox snap the Yankees’ eight-game winning streak thanks to Miguel Gonzalez shutting the Bombers out until the ninth inning. And thanks to the Attack of the Garcias, with Leury homering in the third and Avisail homering in the seventh.

Red Sox 8, Blue Jays 7: The Red Sox had a four run lead heading into the bottom of the ninth, with the recently-promoted Brian Johnson providing some solid work. The Blue Jays rallied for three in the final frame, but fell just short. Mookie Betts, Mitch Moreland and Pablo Sandoval had three hits a piece.

Reds 9, Orioles 3: Adam Duvall hit a grand slam and Bronson Arroyo won his first game since June 15, 2014 with five innings of three-run ball. Arroyo is the first pitcher 40 or over to win a game for the Reds since Boom-Boom Beck beat the Phillies on May 31, 1945. They don’t make nicknames like they used to.

Phillies 6, Mets 2: Extra innings are often nail-biting affairs. Then there’s this one, in which the Phillies scored four runs in the top of the tenth, making the bottom half something of a pro-forma exercise. It wouldn’t have even gotten to extras if it wasn’t for Jose Reyes dropping a two-out popup in the eighth. After that Andres Blanco tied it at 2 with an RBI double. It’d be hard to script a worse beginning to the 2017 season for Reyes.

Rays 5, Tigers 1: Matt Andriese tamed the Tigers with six innings of one-run ball. Miguel Cabrera hit a long homer on his 34th birthday, but that was the only celebrating for the Tigers on this evening.

Nationals 3, Braves 1: The Braves’ five-game winning streak is snapped. Facing Max Scherzer will do that to a team. Scherzer shut ’em out for seven innings, striking out seven. Nats closer Blake Treinen struggled in the ninth and was taken out of the game by Dusty Baker after allowing two hits and walking two dudes. Nice win, but that’s worth watching.

Cubs 9, Brewers 7: The Cubs snap a four-game skid with a comeback win. Chicago rallied for four here, with the go-ahead run coming on a wild pitch. Kyle Schwarber and Miguel Montero each hit two-run homers. Eric Thames had his games-with-a-homer streak snapped, but still had two doubles and three hits in all. Schwarber, after the game, talking about the comeback:

“I just think it shows the character of our team. We’re not gonna give up just because we’re trading blows.”

Just in case you were wondering how, over the years, sportswriters and fans have come to believe that those who win have good character and those who don’t are somehow lacking, it’s quotes like that which do it.

Indians 11, Twins 4: Jose Ramirez homered and drove in two runs and Josh Tomlin gave up three runs in six innings. Tomlin needed that. Francisco Lindor hit a two-run triple in the sixth and Edwin Encarnacion homered. They didn’t need that as bad as Ramirez and Tomlin needed theirs, but they’ll take it.

Angels 5, Astros 2: Albert Pujols hit one of the most memorable home runs of the past couple of decades in Houston back in the 2005 playoffs. He hit another big, big homer in Houston last night. A three-run blast in the fifth that put the Angels ahead and made it to those train tracks the Astros have out in left. Watch:

Giants 2, Royals 1: Matt Cain: one run over seven innings. The dude seems to be back. Still, he didn’t figure in the decision as Jason Hammel only allowed one run as well, sending this to extras. Joe Panik singled in the go-ahead run for the Giants in the 11th.

Cardinals 2, Pirates 1Dexter Fowler tripled and scored and Greg Garcia doubled in a run as Mike Leake twirled six and a third strong innings, allowing only one run against the Starling Marte-free Pirates.

Athletics 4, Rangers 2: Hope the sixth wasn’t the inning during which you decided to walk the dog, because that’s when all of the runs in this game crossed the plate. It was Yu Darvish‘s Waterloo, as he surrendered all four of the A’s runs and left before it ended. Former Ranger Adam Rosales‘ two-run homer was the big blow. Andrew Triggs survived the sixth for Oakland, allowing only two.

Marlins 5, Mariners 0: Miami had a combined no-hitter broken up with one out in the ninth inning when Mitch Haniger doubled off of Kyle BarracloughWei-Yin Chen handled the first seven innings of it, but was lifted for the eighth at the 100-pitch mark. This is the second time in three days the Marlins have had a combined no-hitter go at least seven innings, as Dan Straily and a couple of relievers had one broken up in the eighth on Sunday. Was Chen upset about being taken out even though he probably could’ve gone another inning? Nah. He had this to say after the game, through a translator:

“If given the choice, any pitcher would like to go out there and keep pitching, but Don talked to me and gave me his reasoning and wanted to keep me healthy for the whole season. So under that situation, I try not to think about it too much. It’s his decision to make.”

Not every manager and certainly not all of us would make that choice, but it’s a team game.

Rockies 4, Dodgers 3: Nolan Arenado hit two homers: a two-run shot in the first and a solo shot in the fifth. Kyle Freeland didn’t pitch long enough for the Rockies to qualify for the win but he allowed only one run to the Dodgers in four innings and five relievers helped the lead hold up.

Diamondbacks 11, Padres 2: Shelby Miller pitched seven and a third innings of four-hit ball and has a 3.50 ERA in three starts this year. That’s quite a turnaround. Yasmany Tomas hit a three-run homer. The Padres have dropped five in a row.

Mad Dog Licks Boots

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Earlier this week Tyler Kepner of the New York Times reported that the MLBPA and the league are heading back to the table more than two years before the expiration of the current Collective Bargaining Agreement, which expires following the 2021 season.

This had been hinted at for some time, as the union has shown clear displeasure at the current state of business, particularly with the free agent market. The league, one might assume, is happy with the current state of affairs, but it also has an interest in heading off potential strife or even the hint of a labor stoppage in the future. Moreover, there are priorities which have emerged on MLB’s part since the last CBA was signed that they’d love to advance — pace of play, etc. — so they have some incentive to talk as well. So, while it’s totally newsworthy that the sides are talking, it’s also quite understandable and not particularly controversial.

It’s also quite understandable that, given that this is a negotiation between parties in an adversarial position, there will be public comments from the principles which involve advocacy or even posturing on occasion. That’s part of the deal of any negotiation that holds public interest. So, when Tony Clark, for example, says something like “the system doesn’t work,” and “either we’re going to have a conversation now, or we’re going to have a louder conversation later,” which is what he told Kepner, it’s not really a controversial thing. Indeed, it’s expected.

Chris “Mad Dog” Russo thinks it’s pretty controversial, however. The MLB Network host and talk radio legend took to the airwaves yesterday blasting Clark for not being more deferential to Rob Manfred who “was nice enough to extend him an olive branch.”  Russo likewise asked, rhetorically, what “Rob” must’ve thought when reading Clark’s quotes “over his cup of coffee, and bran muffin, on Madison Avenue, after his workout and all those things . . . his morning coffee, milk and two sugars by the way — Sweet and Low.”

He’s the Mad Dog, but he certainly licks boots here:

 

It’s amusing enough that Russo believes that Clark, Manfred’s counterpart and adversary, is supposed to be deferential and thankful for the mighty Manfred. It’s even more amusing, however, that he takes the tack of arguing that MLB has no real interest in negotiating now and is somehow merely throwing the union a bone or offering an olive branch. In saying this Russo, whether he realizes it or not, is accusing Manfred of bad faith, optics-only talks with the union. I don’t feel like Manfred thinks he’s doing that. And I don’t think Clark would be talking to him if he felt he was being patronized to either. Indeed, the dance of the last several months around all of this was, in part, to ensure that that was not the case.

I don’t know what Manfred thought about Clark’s comments on Tuesday, but I do wonder how he feels about being accused by an MLB Network employee of playing games like this. It might be enough for him to spit out his bran muffin and coffee. Cream and two sugars and all.