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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.

Rangers, Padres, White Sox to continue paying minor leaguers

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In March, Major League Baseball agreed to pay minor league players $400 per week while the sport is shut down amid the coronavirus pandemic. That provision is set to expire at the end of May. As Craig noted earlier, the Athletics will not be paying their minor leaguers starting on June 1.

Several teams are doing the right thing, continuing to pay their minor leaguers $400 per week through at least the end of June. Per The Athletic’s Levi Weaver and James Fegan, the Rangers and White Sox will each tack on another month of pay. The Athletic’s Dennis Lin reported earlier that the Padres will pay their players through the end of August. Craig also cited a Baseball America report from this morning, which mentioned that the Marlins will also pay their players through the end of August.

Frankly, if the Marlins can find a way to continue paying their minor league players, then every team should be able to do the same. The Marlins are widely believed to be the least profitable among the 30 major league clubs. Here’s hoping the rest of the league follows the Rangers’, White Sox’s, Padres’, and Marlins’ lead as opposed to the Athletics’.