Walker Buehler
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The Dodgers pitched the 12th combined no-hitter in MLB history

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Update, 12:17 AM ET: Southpaw Adam Liberatore completed the Dodgers’ combined no-hitter with a flawless ninth inning. He struck out Eric Hosmer to kick off the final frame, then induced a Christian Villanueva pop-up for the second out. The third out? A decisive swinging strikeout — courtesy of Franchy Cordero — that brought the combined no-no to a satisfying conclusion as the Dodgers opened the Mexico Series in Monterrey, Mexico. The feat is the first combined no-hitter in franchise history and the first in the majors since Cole Hamels, Jake Diekman, Ken Giles and Jonathan Papelbon no-hit the Braves back in September 2014.

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The Dodgers are through eight innings of a combined no-hitter against the Padres. Rookie right-hander Walker Buehler delivered six innings of no-hit, three-walk, eight-strikeout ball to start Friday’s contest, but was pulled in the seventh after reaching a pitch count of 93. Dodgers manager Dave Roberts didn’t want to risk over-exerting the rookie, who has yet to log more than 94 pitches in a single outing in the big leagues so far.

Buehler was succeeded by left-hander Tony Cingrani and righty Yimi Garcia, each of whom tossed an inning of no-hit ball in relief. Cingrani got Christian Villanueva to line out to left field, then issued back-to-back walks to Franchy Cordero and Raffy Lopez. Neither batter scored, however, as Matt Szczur was called out on strikes and Freddy Galvis ground into a force out to bring the seventh to a close. Garcia had even better luck: He whiffed Manuel Margot to lead off the eighth, then retired Travis Jankowski on a ground out and caught Jose Pirela on a swinging strikeout.

The Dodgers are currently working with four runs of support as they enter the ninth. Matt Kemp put the team on the board with an RBI single in the first inning, followed by back-to-back home runs from Chris Taylor and Enrique Hernandez in the second and a timely base hit from Alex Verdugo in the sixth.

The Royals are paying everyone. Why can’t all of the other teams?

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Over the past several weeks we’ve heard a lot of news about teams furloughing front office and scouting staff, leveling pay cuts for those who remain and, most recently, ceasing stipends to minor league players and releasing them en masse. The message being sent, intentionally or otherwise, is that baseball teams are feeling the pinch.

The Kansas City Royals, however, are a different story.

Jon Heyman reported this afternoon that the Royals are paying their minor leaguers through August 31, which is when the minor league season would’ve ended, and unlike so many other teams, they are not releasing players either. Jeff Passan, meanwhile, reports that the Royals will not lay any team employees off or furlough anyone. “Nearly 150 employees will not take pay cuts,” he says, though “higher-level employees will take tiered cuts.” Passan adds that the organization intends to restore the lost pay due to those higher-level employees in the future when revenue ramps back up, making them whole.

While baseball finances are murky at best and opaque in most instances, most people agree that the Royals are one of the lower-revenue franchises in the game. They are also near the bottom as far as franchise value goes. Finally, they have the newest ownership group in all of baseball, which means that the group almost certainly has a lot of debt and very little if any equity in the franchise. Any way you slice it, cashflow is likely tighter in Kansas City than almost anywhere else.

Yet the Royals are paying minor leaguers and front office employees while a great number of other teams are not. What’s their excuse?