Jul 16, 2013, 11:25 PM EST
Another Midsummer Classic in the bag. Another scoresheet which looks like a train wreck, but that’s how the All-Star Game rolls. And the American League rolled to victory here at Citi Field, beating the National League 3 to 0.
As with most All-Star Games it was the small moments which were the most memorable. Here we had the Mets’ Matt Harvey, pitching in his home park, obviously carrying some extra adrenaline early. His velocity was high but his first couple of pitches shaky as he gave up a leadoff double to Mike Trout and then hit Robinson Cano on the right leg. Cano had to leave the game after taking first base and, thankfully, X-Rays came back negative — he has a contusion — but you don’t want to see that happen in an exhibition. Harvey calmed down after that and retired six in a row. A nice outing for the kid.
Beyond that, not many fireworks, as pitching and defense came to the fore.
The game remained scoreless until the top of the fourth when Miguel Cabrera doubled off Patrick Corbin, advanced to third on a Chris Davis single and scored on a Jose Bautista sac fly. The American League added another run in similar fashion in the fifth, this time with an Adam Jones double off Cliff Lee, a Joe Mauer single and a J.J. Hardy fielder’s choice. Not the most exciting way to score, but it was mixed in with a fan wearing a Robinson Cano shirsey running onto the field — he telegraphed it, quite stupidly, via his Twitter feed — and that’s kinda fun. Except for the fan, of course, who was slammed to the ground.
More zeros after that with Matt Moore, Jose Fernandez, Grant Balfour and Aroldis Chapman putting up zeroes through the the bottom of the fifth, all through the sixth and into the seventh-inning stretch. Then in the bottom of the seventh Jim Leyland decided to get some more relievers in the game, going through Greg Holland, Brett Cecil and Steve Delabar. They combined for yet another zero, aided by a slicker than slick play by Manny Machado on a hard Paul Goldschmidt ball to third. Machado looked like Brooks Robinson.
The AL added an insurance run in the eighth off of Craig Kimbrel. The sequence: a Salvador Perez single, Jhonny Peralta single and then, after Torii Hunter grounded into a double play, Jason Kipnis doubled to left scoring Perez. That set the stage for Mariano Rivera, who came in an inning earlier than expected, covering the bottom of the eighth. He entered to a nice tribute from the assembled All-Stars — they left the field empty for him as he took the mound, giving him a standing ovation — and ended it by retiring the National League in order, throwing 16 cutters, in his final All-Star appearance.
Everyone involved was getting punchy by the top of the ninth inning, but Prince Fielder woke us up with a leadoff triple of Jason Grilli. Prince Fielder. The big man. And he moved like nobody’s business, letting out a yell as he slid head-first into the third base bag. I love to watch that guy run. He must have been tired, though, as he remained stranded on third despite a couple of infield outs that may have scored a less tired man.
Joe Nathan came on in the ninth, struck out the first two batters he faced before surrendering a double to Goldschmidt. Nathan bore down, however, and induced a pop fly by Pedro Alvarez to end the ballgame.
Chris Sale got the win, Corbin got the loss, Nathan got the save and the American League has home field advantage in the 2013 World Series. Mo Rivera was named MVP and awarded a new Corvette.
Dec 19, 2013, 9:10 AM EST
Juan Gonzalez made something like $90 million in salary alone during his baseball career, so maybe he’s doing this to simply clear out the clutter. But whatever the motivation, you can now get your hands on some hot, hot Juan Gonzalez memorabilia. Up for auction? His 1996 MVP award. His 1996 and 2001 Silver Slugger…
Dec 19, 2013, 8:40 AM EST
There are a couple of reports this morning that Chien-Ming Wang has signed a minor league deal with the Cincinnati Reds with a spring training invitation. We last saw Wang getting shellacked in a July game for the Toronto Blue Jays, in which he couldn’t escape the second inning after allowing six runs on eight hits…
Dec 19, 2013, 7:06 AM EST
Big news from Japan this morning. The New York Times passes along reports from Japan that the Rakuten Golden Eagles will not post Masahiro Tanaka. Rather, as reported last night, they are going to offer him a contract in the neighborhood of $8 million and force him to stay in Japan. This would be way…
Dec 18, 2013, 11:26 PM EST
From Paul Sullivan of the Chicago Tribune: The Cubs signed free agent left-hander Jonathan Sanchez to a minor league deal, according to a source. The deal is said to include incentives if he makes the major league roster. There was a report earlier this week that Sanchez was drawing free agent interest from seven or…
Dec 18, 2013, 10:14 PM EST
Chris Cotillo of MLB Daily Dish reports that free agent Luke Scott has agreed to a contract with the SK Wyverns of the Korean Baseball Organization. The financial details have not been disclosed, but it’s probably safe to assume that the deal comes with a hefty salary given that the KBO doesn’t often attract legitimate…
Dec 18, 2013, 8:51 PM EST
NPB Tracker’s Patrick Newman translated the report from Sports Hochi in Japan … Looks like Rakuten is not giving up on Tanaka. Hochi says they are going to offer him an $8m salary. http://t.co/PJRk1Cqa0U — Patrick Newman (@npbtracker) December 19, 2013 It would be the highest single-season salary ever given out to a Nippon Professional…
Dec 18, 2013, 7:37 PM EST
With the Rays still asking the moon for ace David Price, the Mariners have apparently moved on to other options for upgrading their starting rotation. According to FOX Sports’ Jon Morosi, the Seattle front office has been showing “continued interest” in free agent right-hander Ervin Santana. There was a report in November stating that Santana…
Dec 18, 2013, 6:23 PM EST
MLB.com’s Corey Brock passes along word of this minor transaction … More #Padres action: The team has traded Jesus Guzman to the #Astros for INF Ryan Jackson. — Corey Brock (@FollowThePadres) December 18, 2013 Guzman, 29, is a .259/.324/.418 career hitter in 930 plate appearances at the major league level. He’s limited defensively to the…
Dec 18, 2013, 5:16 PM EST
Richard Justice has a good column up about Billy Beane today. He notes Beane’s role as a transformative figure and how, despite the fact that every GM this side of Ruben Amaro has followed Beane’s approach — and despite the fact most of them have more money to work with than he does — Beane’s…
Dec 18, 2013, 4:49 PM EST
Kansas City and Baltimore swapped role players, with the Orioles sending third baseman/first baseman Danny Valencia to the Royals for outfielder David Lough. Valencia was overmatched as a regular for the Twins, but has found a good niche as a part-timer used mostly versus left-handed pitching. He hit .304 with eight homers and an .888…
Dec 18, 2013, 4:35 PM EST
I’m not a big fan of the Ryan Doumit trade, but at least it’s good for the yuks: Wren said he viewed Doumit as the best player available to fill his bench need because “he’s almost two players in one.” — Mark Bowman (@mlbbowman) December 18, 2013 True! He is almost two players. Almost…
Dec 18, 2013, 4:16 PM EST
Livan Hernandez earned more than $50 million during his 17-season career, including a million bucks as recently as 2012, but now he’s selling his stuff. Clark Spencer of the Miami Herald reports that Hernandez is auctioning off his championship ring and MVP award from the 1997 World Series with the Marlins, both with $5,000 reserve…
Dec 18, 2013, 3:21 PM EST
After shopping around as a free agent Eric Chavez has decided to return to Arizona, with Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com reporting that he’s agreed to re-sign with the Diamondbacks. Chavez has stayed healthy and productive in part-time roles for the Diamondbacks and Yankees during the past two seasons, hitting a combined .281 with 25 homers…
Dec 18, 2013, 3:00 PM EST
This is pretty unexpected: Source: Atlanta finalizing deal to acquire catcher/outfielder Ryan Doumit from Minnesota. — Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) December 18, 2013 Rosenthal reports that the Braves are sending back lefty Sean Gilmartin. Doumit, a catcher and outfielder who does neither of those things at all well but who has been known to hit a little,…
Dec 18, 2013, 2:47 PM EST
After a year spent in Japan veteran third baseman/first baseman Casey McGehee is headed back to America to sign with the Marlins, according to Clark Spencer of the Miami Herald. McGehee took a $1.5 million deal in Japan following back-to-back terrible seasons in the majors and helped the Tohoku Rakuten Golden Eagles to the league…
Dec 18, 2013, 2:14 PM EST
Boston acquired Franklin Morales from Colorado in May of 2011 and now three years later the Red Sox have traded him back to the Rockies. Thomas Harding of MLB.com reports that the Red Sox will send the Rockies 27-year-old Triple-A reliever Chris Martin in addition to Morales, who had a 3.90 ERA in 134 innings…
Dec 18, 2013, 2:03 PM EST
Either Ruben Amaro never spends any time on the internet or he just loves providing fuel for the trolls: Amaro somewhat cagey when repeatedly questioned about makeup of roster he expects to contend: “Ryan Howard does still live. He exists.” — Ryan Lawrence (@ryanlawrence21) December 18, 2013 I guess we’ll see if that’s the…
Dec 18, 2013, 1:50 PM EST
It sounds like the Rockies are committed to playing Carlos Gonzales is center field after trading away Dexter Fowler, but they’ve picked up an alternative just in case. Ken Rosenthal of FOXSports.com reports that the Rockies have acquired Drew Stubbs from the Indians in exchange for left-hander Josh Outman. Stubbs is probably best suited for…
Dec 18, 2013, 1:40 PM EST
We learned over the weekend that Ryan Freel, who took his own life a year ago this Sunday, suffered from chronic traumatic encephalopathy, or CTE, a condition caused by concussions and which has been linked to suicide. But Freel suffered from so much more. He was diagnosed with bipolar disorder, ADD and depression. He was an alcoholic…
Dec 18, 2013, 1:18 PM EST
It just gets better and better with the New York Yankees. They just signed Brian Roberts. I wrote before (in my Ichiro Suzuki essay for the 100 greatest players) that this Yankees team would look awfully good … in 2006. But by essentially replacing Robinson Cano with Brian Roberts, they have — in a weird…