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J.A. Happ clinches 100th career win

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The Blue Jays celebrated their first back-to-back win since May 1 on Friday night, taking down the Orioles 5-1 and backing J.A. Happ for the southpaw’s 100th career win. The left-hander rattled off seven innings of two-hit, one-run ball in his seventh quality start of the season; beyond Trey Mancini‘s run-scoring force out in the second inning, Happ didn’t allow a single runner past second base.

Happ has yet to replicate the 3.53-ERA, 2.9-fWAR totals of yesteryear, but he’s been a steady presence in the Jays’ rotation with a 7-3 record in 12 starts and a 4.08 ERA, 2.5 BB/9 and 11.5 SO/9 across 70 2/3 innings in 2018. He’s also benefitted from a generous helping of run support — leading up to Friday’s win over Baltimore, Happ enjoyed an average of 6.81 runs of support per start (including three double-digit blowouts).

That run support was on full display with a trifecta of home runs from Russell Martin, Randal Grichuk and Kevin Pillar. Martin tacked on another RBI single in the sixth, while Teoscar Hernandez returned in the seventh with an RBI triple, his fifth of the year. Thanks to a strong showing from the offense, Happ earned membership in yet another exclusive (and oddly specific) club:

That may not be enough consolation for the team’s fanbase, however. Following their win, the Blue Jays have still only clinched three of their last 10 games and currently sit fourth in the AL East with a 28-35 record.

Octavio Dotel, Luis Castillo arrested in drug, money laundering investigation

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Five years ago, Octavio Dotel retired following a 15-year career in which he pitched for a then-record 13 different teams. I’m not exactly sure what he’s been up to since then, but I know that today he got arrested, as did former Marlins, Twins and Mets second baseman Luis Castillo.

That’s the report from Héctor Gómez, and from the Dominican Today, each of whom report that the two ex-big leaguers were arrested today in connection with a longstanding money laundering and/or drug investigation focused on one César Peralta. also known as “César the Abuser.” So he sounds fun. Gómez characterizes it as a money laundering thing. Reporter Dionisio Soldevila characterizes it as “drug trafficking charges.” Such charges often go hand-in-hand, of course. I’m sure more details will be come out eventually. For now we have the report of their arrests. According to the Dominican Today, four cars belonging to Dotel were confiscated as well.

Dotel didn’t debut until he was 25, and for his first couple of years with the Mets and Astros he struggled to establish himself as a starter. He was switched full-time to the Houston bullpen at 27, however, and went on to make 724 relief appearances with a 3.32 ERA and a .207 opponents’ batting average while racking up 955 strikeouts in 760 innings. At the time of his retirement his career strikeout rate — 10.8 per nine innings — was the best in the history of baseball for right-handed pitchers with at least 900 innings, edging out Kerry Wood and Pedro Martinez.

Castillo also played 15 seasons, with a career line of .290/.368/.351. He was a three-time All Star and won three Gold Glove awards.