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And That Happened: Sunday’s Scores and Highlights

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Here are the scores. Here are the highlights:

Dodgers 6, Rockies 3:  On Friday, Dodgers rookie Matt Beaty hit a two-run home run to give the Dodgers a walkoff win. On Saturday, rookie  Alex Verdugo hit a walk-off solo homer. Yesterday, with the game tied at three, Bud Black decided that, sure, he was gonna give another Dodgers rookie — this time Will Smith — the chance to win it for L.A. by walking Russell Martin to get to him.

Welp, that didn’t work. Smith homered and the Dodgers won it via a walkoff hit from a rookie for the third straight day. That’s . . . improbable. So improbable the guy working the camera tracking the ball didn’t even think it was going out for a moment:

The Dodgers swept the second place Rockies, won their sixth game in a row and are now 13 dang games ahead of Colorado in the NL West.

Cubs 5, Mets 3: New York took a 3-2 lead into the bottom of the eighth but two reached off of Seth Lugo and then Javier Báez launched his 100th career homer into the right field seats to give the Cubs the lead and, eventually, the win:

The Mets, you may have heard, did not take it particularly well. It’s the sort of thing that should get Mickey Callaway immediately fired and Jason Vargas suspended. I suppose some discipline may come down but I also feel like the Mets are too cheap to pay both an interim and a fired manager for the rest of the season so they’ll just let Callaway hang around. Even better, if they have a good series against the reeling Phillies this week, someone will even say Callaway and Vargas’ garbage “inspired” the Mets or “lit a fire” or some crap. Can’t wait.

Mariners 13, Orioles 3: J.P. Crawford had four hits and drove in four, homering in the first inning and singling in two during the M’s eight-run third inning. That’s all well and good, but I’d like to note that even though they won here, Seattle looked way better in a losing effort on Saturday because they wore these Seattle Pilots throwbacks:

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That’s Tommy Milone. He’s played for six franchises in nine seasons. He shows up for work and I’ll assume he’s a nice guy, but he’s nothing special as a pitcher either. Which is to say that, fifty years ago, he’d probably make a good Seattle Pilot. There’d probably be some anecdote about him in “Ball Four” in which he, I dunno, taught the other relievers how to make “bullpen margaritas” out of rubbing alcohol, Gatorade, and sunflower seeds or something. Man that team sounded like a hoot.

Marlins 6, Phillies 4: Rookie starter Jordan Yamamoto won for the third time in three career starts — this the first one not against the Cardinals — while Garrett Cooper and Brian Anderson hit back-to-back homers to help Miami sweep Philly. It’s the first time the Marlins have swept the Phillies in ten years. Miami has won seven of eleven. And that makes seven straight losses for the Phillies, who fall six and a half games behind Atlanta. The skidding Phillies now take on the s**t-show Mets in a four-game midweek series that should feature the grumpiest collective fan base of any matchup so far this season.

Pirates 11, Padres 10: A wild 11th inning saw the Padres score three only to see the Pirates rally for four and win it in via a walkoff bases-loaded walk. Kevin Newman drew the game-winning free pass off of Matt Wisler despite started the two-out at bat down 0-2. To get to this point the Pirates overcame a 7-4 deficit in the eighth. In all there were 21 runs scored in this thing with none of them coming via a home run. I’m sure an investigation into this startling anomaly will begin forthwith.

Braves 4, Nationals 3: The Nats were getting shut out but scored two in the bottom of the seventh to force extra innings. As has often been the case this year, however, the bullpen faltered, with Tanner Rainey surrendering a two-run, pinch-hit jack in the tenth to Johan Camargo. It wasn’t all great news for the Braves, of course, as starter Mike Soroka was removed for precautionary reasons after taking a fastball off of his right forearm. X-rays were negative, which is positive. Atlanta takes two of three from Washington and wins its fifth straight series.

Rays 8, Athletics 2: Three in the third and five in the fourth made this one a breeze for the Rays. Travis d'Arnaud drove in three runs and hit a two-run homer and Austin Meadows hit a bases-clearing, bases-loaded double. Ryan Yarbrough allowed one run over six innings following the opener. I still don’t think anyone has come up with a good name fo the guy who follows the opener but who, in reality, functions as the starter. “Appetizer” and “entree” maybe? I don’t know.

Astros 9, Yankees 4: The Astros break their seven-game losing streak thanks to a Tyler White grand slam, homers from José Altuve, Yuli Gurriel and Yordan Alvarez, and seven strong innings from Justin Verlander. His counterpart, J.A. Happ, was more like J.A. Hapless, allowing eight runs on eleven hits in four innings of work. The Yankees’ loss snapped an eight-game winning streak. The only highlight they had on the day came in the Old Timers Game when Mariano Rivera hit an inside-the-park homer:

Rivera’s homer came off of Scott Kamieniecki and was give a big assist by a lollygagging Jeff Nelson playing center field for some reason. I guess you take your old timers where you can find them.

Brewers 7, Reds 5: Travis Shaw kicked off a five-run third inning for Milwaukee with a long, long homer, Orlando Arcia singled in the fifth run that inning and later went deep, and Brandon Woodruff went seven innings striking out 12 to give the Brewers a split of the four-game set against Cincinnati. Milwaukee is 13-3 in Woodruff’s 16 starts this season.

Royals 6, Twins 1: Hunter Dozier hit a three-run homer and Homer Bailey allowed one run while pitching into the sixth to help the Royals split the four-game set. From the AP gamer:

Dozier returned to the team on Friday after spending the previous night in the hospital, where his wife gave birth to the couple’s second child. And while he struggled at the plate in his first couple of games back, that timing seemed to have returned against Minnesota.

It’s been a while for me, but I remember the third or fourth day after the kids being born coinciding with a marked improvement in my mood. Probably has a lot to do with the end of the meconium poops. Look that one up, y’all without kids, and be thankful you never woke up to one of those numbers after two uncomfortable and disoriented hours of sleeping on a hospital recovery room couch. That’ll wake your ass up, right quick.

Indians 8, Tigers 3: Indians prospect Bobby Bradley made his big league debut and doubled and drove in a run to tie the game up at 1 in his first major league plate appearance. Not a bad way to start things off. And it did start things off, too. It stated a five-run second inning, in fact, which also saw Francisco Lindor double in a run and Cleveland get two more runs on a throwing error. Carlos Santana would later homer as the Indians completed a three-game sweep of Detroit.

Blue Jays 6, Red Sox 1: Marcus Stroman shut out the six for six, Lourdes Gurriel Jr. had three hits, Danny Jansen hit a two-run single and Eric Sogard hit a solo homer for the Blue Jays, who won the final two games of the three-game set.

Rangers 7, White Sox 4: Tim Federowicz and Danny Santana hit two-out, two-run homers in the second and Texas had a 5-0 lead before the Sox got on the board. Rookie Adrian Sampson allowed one run and seven hits in seven innings, striking out four and walking one. Texas has won three of four.

Diamondbacks 3, Giants 2: Tim Locastro hit a walkoff RBI single in the 10th to snap Arizona’s six-game losing streak. The Giants had only four hits on the game and were held hitless for its final four innings.

Angels 6, Cardinals 4: Tommy La Stella and David Fletcher drove in two runs apiece and Tyler Skaggs tossed five shutout innings. Los Angeles rallied for four in the ninth, turning a 2-0 lead into a 6-0 lead. And they needed all of it, as the Cards plated four, their own rally falling short. That salvaged a game of the three-game set for the Angels but, really, the series was all about Albert Pujols. The big man’s return to St. Louis was pretty wonderful all around. In addition to feeling all of the love and then some, he played well too, going 4-for-11 with a homer:

Oakland Athletics donate $100,000 to Black organizations

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As the United States experiences another night of protests against police brutality, the Oakland Athletics released a statement. Many sports leagues and individual teams released statements today — though not MLB nor most of its teams, interestingly — but the A’s went further than most. Their statement:

We are heartbroken and saddened by the inequities that persist in this country and the impact felt in our community. We stand in solidarity with the Black community in Oakland and beyond against racism and injustice. We will continue to support local organizations by donating $100,000 today to the Oakland African American Chamber of Commerce, Oakland NAACP, and 100 Black Men of the Bay Area, who work tirelessly to serve the needs of the Black community.

Most organizations’ statements were so vague as to be meaningless, so it is nice to see the A’s not only acknowledge the problem, but put their money where their mouth is as well.

That being said, there is still some room for improvement. First, it is important to acknowledge what, exactly, the “racist and injust” inequities are. George Floyd was killed by a Minneapolis police officer, the latest extrajudicial killing of a Black man at the hands of police. That’s why there have been protests across the nation for the last week. These statements, if they are to have the impact intended, need to explicitly mention police brutality against Black people. This is unquestionably a time to take sides and the lack of specificity benefits those doing the oppressing.

Second, what other actions will the Athletics take to show solidarity? The team had a “Law Enforcement Day” scheduled for August 2 this summer. Given recent events, would that have been canceled if there were a normal season? Will they hold Law Enforcement Day if an altered 2020 happens, and will they hold such events in the future? Will they contract with local police departments for security? If the Athletics’ solidarity begins and ends with a simple cash donation, the organization is just paying for good P.R.

The A’s should absolutely be applauded for their financial commitment to good causes. But there are always ways to do better.