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Minor league pitcher does backflips after saves

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A week ago Sunday we had a big, fun benches-clearing brawl because Chris Archer of the Pirates decided that it was bad form for Derek Dietrich of the Reds to admire a long homer he hit. That, as always, led to talk about unwritten rules, on-field decorum and all of that.

As I said at the time, it’s kind of a tiresome argument at this point. It’s also a pretty disingenuous one on the part of pitchers, most of whom fist pump and dance around in their big moments, often in ways that make a hitter’s bat flip or moment of admiration seem tame. Pitchers are emotional snowflakes when it comes to this stuff. And they’re often hypocritical, Chris Archer included.

Which brings us to Twins minor leaguer Dusten Knight, who currently plays for the Pensacola Blue Wahoos in the Double-A Southern League. Based on his performance after notching a couple of saves this past week, one hopes that he is not the sort who gets bent out of shape when an opposing batter struts around a bit:

Someone ask Chris Archer if this is OK.

The Nationals have inquired about Kris Bryant

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The Washington Nationals, fresh off signing Stephen Strasburg to a $245 million deal, are now turning their attention to their third base hole. Jon Morosi of MLB.com reports that they have made inquiries to the Chicago Cubs about trading for Kris Bryant.

Emphasis on the word “inquiry” because it’d be premature for the Cubs to trade Bryant at the moment, even if they are reported to be considering the possibility.

Bryant and the Cubs are awaiting word from an arbitrator about Bryant’s years-old service time grievance. If Bryant wins, he becomes a free agent after the 2020 season. If the Cubs win they control him for two more years. The team may or may not choose to trade him in either case as they are reportedly trying to cut payroll, but the price for him will vary pretty significantly depending on whether or not the acquiring club will receive one or two years of control over the former MVP.

For Washington, this would be a means of replacing free agent third baseman Anthony Rendon. Or, perhaps, the inquiries are a means of creating a tad more leverage for the Nats as they talk to Rendon’s agent about re-signing him.

Which, in the past, the Nats said they could not do if they also re-signed Strasburg, though I suspect that’s just posturing too. They may not want to spend big money to keep their World Series core together, but they can afford it. They’re going to see, I suspect, an eight-figure uptick in revenue by virtue of being the defending World Series champs. They are poised to receive a significant payout as a result of recent rulings in their own multi-year dispute with the Orioles and the MASN network. They are, of course, owned by billionaire real estate moguls. All of that taken together means that, if they choose to, they can bring back Rendon. Assuming he chooses to come back too.

But, if that doesn’t happen, they appear to be giving themselves options at the hot corner.