This Great Game Comebacker

The Week That Was in Baseball: April 14-20, 2014
Yasiel Puig’s Turbulent Road to America Getting a Grip on the Transfer Rule
The Astros' Over-sensitivity Over the Unwritten Rules Gunning for Mr. Met


Best and Worst of the Week

BEST HITTER, AMERICAN LEAGUE
Kevin Kouzmanoff, Texas Rangers

AB
R
H
2B
3B
HR
RBI
BB
IB
HB
SB
29 6 10 4 0 2 8 0 0 0 0

Not a bad week for someone who recently just got back to the big league level for the first time in three years. Once a rock at third base for the Padres, Kouzmanoff lost himself after unsuccessful stays in Colorado and Oakland, and roamed the lost wilderness of the minors until popping back to life—and then some—with a terrific week for the Rangers. He had hit safely in his first ten games for Texas before going hitless on Sunday.


BEST HITTER, NATIONAL LEAGUE
Troy Tulowitzki, Colorado Rockies

AB
R
H
2B
3B
HR
RBI
BB
IB
HB
SB
22 8 11 4 0 1 6 7 0 0 0

The Rockies took their chances and let their precious, fragile All-Star talent play everyday this past week, but Tulowitzki made it more than worth their while with a fabulous set of numbers at the plate—especially in a weekend series against the Phillies in which he went 7-for-9 with four extra-base hits, six RBIs and three walks. Maybe the day off comes soon, but with the way he’s playing, it’ll be tough for the Rockies to sit him.


WORST HITTER, AMERICAN LEAGUE
Raul Ibanez, Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim

AB
R
H
2B
3B
HR
RBI
BB
IB
HB
SB
22 0 1 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0

The week before, the 41-year-old slugger reached a nice little milestone when he collected his 2,000th career hit; since then, anything beyond that has been tough to come by, with only a double to vouch for in an otherwise empty week. Ibanez is known for being a streaky hitter, so he may burst out of this funk soon enough—but given his age, turning his fortunes on a dime for the better may be harder to come by than it used to.


WORST HITTER, NATIONAL LEAGUE
Curtis Granderson, New York Mets

AB
R
H
2B
3B
HR
RBI
BB
IB
HB
SB
19 1 1 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 0

The articulate, often dynamic outfielder two years removed from back-to-back 40-homer seasons with the Yankees has found it hard winning over his new fans across town with the Mets—and this past week didn’t help. Sure, he won Sunday’s game with a sacrifice fly in the 14th inning, but only after going 0-for-6 with an error—a representative sample of a longer stretch of dismal output that’s drawn numerous boos from Mets fans. After 17 games, Granderson is batting a paltry .127 with a single homer.


BEST PITCHER, AMERICAN LEAGUE
Martin Perez, Texas Rangers

W-L
IP
H
R
ER
BB
IB
HB
WP
BK
SO
1-0 9 3 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 8

The Rangers could use some pitching excellence with a good chunk of their rotation on the shelf, and the 23-year-old Venezuelan has thus far delivered. Perez saved his best for Friday, toying with the White Sox for nine innings and emerging with his first career shutout. In the process, he extended a streak of consecutive scoreless innings to 17 and improved his season record to 3-0 with a 1.86 ERA. Hey Yu, Mr. Darvish—you’ve got good company.


BEST PITCHER, NATIONAL LEAGUE
Henderson Alvarez, Miami Marlins

W-L
IP
H
R
ER
BB
IB
HB
WP
BK
SO
1-0 9 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 4

The Venezuelan righty gave himself a nice belated birthday gift when he neutralized the Mariners on Saturday with a two-hit gem, one day after turning 24. It may not have been as noteworthy as the last shutout he threw, when he no-hit the Tigers on the final day of the 2013 season, but it was just as important as it affirmed Henderson’s potential as a worthy sidekick to Jose Fernandez.


WORST PITCHER, AMERICAN LEAGUE
Jarred Cosart, Houston Astros

W-L
IP
H
R
ER
BB
IB
HB
WP
BK
SO
0-1 0.1 3 7 7 4 0 0 1 0 0

Last season, the young right-hander from League City, Texas was bereft of luck after winning only one of ten starts despite a 1.95 ERA. But he had no one to blame but himself this past Friday when he crashed on takeoff against the A’s in Oakland, allowing seven of eight hitters to reach—two via home run—with all seven scoring before being pulled one out into the first inning. The Astros still have high hopes for Cosart, so they’re hoping this is a momentary lapse of focus.


WORST PITCHER, NATIONAL LEAGUE
Bronson Arroyo, Arizona Diamondbacks

W-L
IP
H
R
ER
BB
IB
HB
WP
BK
SO
0-1 3.1 10 9 9 1 0 0 0 0 1

During the offseason, the 37-year-old veteran was scratching his head over why no one was signing him. Maybe Tuesday’s collapse against the Mets (let’s say that again—against the Mets) served as the answer, the reality check. The Diamondbacks were the ones who took him off the free agent market and now may be wishing they hadn’t; Arroyo’s bad effort comes on the heels of two earlier, relatively stable yet still shaky starts to begin the year.


BEST TEAM, AMERICAN LEAGUE
Oakland A's (5-1)

Another week, another dose of proof that the A’s are no mirage—so let that be a harder slap in the face to those who otherwise still don’t believe it. So big deal, they swept the Astros at home to finish the week—but they started it by taking two of three from the rich-kid Angels down in Anaheim, suffering their only defeat in 12 innings on a getaway Wednesday. The A’s end the week with a 13-5 record, easily the AL’s best.


BEST TEAM, NATIONAL LEAGUE
Atlanta Braves (4-2)

Remember back before Opening Day when starting pitchers were dropping like flies in Atlanta and the local fans desperately asked themselves, “Who’s left?” Seems like a distant memory now. The Braves took series wins on the road in Philadelphia and New York and retained first place in the NL East with another week of starting rotation excellence which has produced a 1.54 ERA to date—easily, the major’s best. And how about this: Dan Uggla and B.J. Upton are both hitting above .200!


WORST TEAM, AMERICAN LEAGUE
Houston Astros (0-6)

Astros prospect Delino DeShields Jr. was hit in the face by a pitch, swelling his check to look as if he was trying to chew an entire baseball. That’s pretty much the way the parent team felt all week, despite the major league debut of highly touted blue chipper George Springer as they were handed back-to-back three-game sweeps by the Royals and A’s. Manager Bo Porter tried to rev his team up by engaging Jed Lowrie in a silly argument over unwritten rules, but what’s firmly etched in stone is that the Astros remains baseball’s worst team.


WORST TEAM, NATIONAL LEAGUE
Arizona Diamondbacks (1-5)

The Snakes wanted to slither into a hole after hitting rock bottom to start the week, getting swept by the Mets at home (let’s say that again—swept by the Mets) to drop their record at Chase Field (and Sydney) to a ridiculously bad 1-11. They eked out a 12-inning road victory at Los Angeles on Friday, but that was a singular moment of triumph in a week of otherwise pure defeat, cementing the Diamondbacks into the NL West basement with an atrocious 5-16 record..


 

 

 

Best and Worst of the Week

Monday, April 14
Someone finally stops Milwaukee—and it’s the defending NL champion St. Louis Cardinals. Lance Lynn throws seven shutout innings with 11 strikeouts to pick up his third win of the year, and Jhonny Peralta and Jon Jay go deep to give the Redbirds a 4-0 road win and end the Brewers’ nine-game win streak.

Trailing 1-0 at Philadelphia in the top of the sixth, the Atlanta Braves rebound with nine runs over the next four frames on the strength of five homers—including back-to-back-to-back blasts in the eighth from Evan Gattis, Dan Uggla and Andrelton Simmons, and a go-ahead, ninth-inning grand slam from Uggla for a 9-6 win.

Washington administers the Marlins with their eighth straight defeat with a 9-2 win at Miami, as Bryce Harper, Anthony Rendon and Danny Espinosa each collect a double and triple. It’s the first time since 1978—and the first in the NL since 1934—that three players on the same team have each racked up a double and triple in the same game.


Tuesday, April 15
In a game halted a day earlier from bad weather and continued before the regularly scheduled contest, the Pittsburgh Pirates tip the Reds at Cincinnati, 8-7. Curious eyes are cast upon the game’s resumption after ten home runs had been hit in the first six innings on Monday; but in the final three frames completed on Tuesday, no more long balls are struck and the major league nine-inning record of 12 remains safe.

In his 14th game for Texas, Prince Fielder hits his first home run of the year—and knocks in his first run in eight games played at home—while reclamation project Kevin Kouzmanoff adds a home run among three hits and three RBIs to lift the Rangers to a 5-0 win over Seattle.


Wednesday, April 16
Cubs Blanked, Cubs Blanked: The Chicago Cubs go completely scoreless in a doubleheader for the first time since 1962 when they are double-blanked in New York by the Yankees, 3-0 and 2-0. In the first game, the Yankees’ Masahiro Tanaka has his strongest effort yet by striking out ten Cubs and allowing two hits over eight innings; Michael Pineda blanks Chicago for six innings in the night game. No team has been shutout twice in one day since Oakland in 1988.

The Boston Red Sox score single runs in the eighth and ninth innings to tie the White Sox at Chicago, then win it 6-4 in the 14th after the White Sox run out of pitchers and lean on second baseman Leury Garcia to bail them out on the mound. After retiring the first two Boston hitters, Garcia falls apart by walking the next two before Jackie Bradley Jr. brings them both home on a double for the winning runs. The Red Sox reach base 23 times—six via hit, 15 by walk, and twice after being hit by pitches.

The Braves edge the Phillies, 1-0, as Julio Teheran wins a pitching duel over Cliff Lee; both hurlers go the distance. The lone run comes on a solo homer from Evan Gattis, who according to Elias is only the second player in the modern era to go 4-for-4 with a solo shot in a 1-0 game (Rogers Hornsby, in 1929, is the other).

Another highly anticipated pitching duel results in neither win nor loss for starters Felix Hernandez of Seattle and Yu Darvish of Texas. Both aces throw well, but it comes down to the bullpen—and the Rangers win that battle, as Leonys Martin’s ninth-inning single caps a two-run rally off Mariners closer Fernando Rodney for a 3-2 victory.


Thursday, April 17
The Minnesota Twins sweep the Toronto Blue Jays in a cold day-night doubleheader before the two smallest crowds at Target Field’s four-plus years of existence. In the first game, second-year pitcher Kyle Gibson improves to 3-0 and a 0.93 ERA with eight shutout innings in the Twins’ 7-0 win, which begins with a first-pitch temperature of 31 degrees—the coldest ever for an outdoor major league game in Minneapolis. At night (with temperatures nearly ten degrees warmer), the Twins greatly benefit from severe Toronto pitching wildness to post a 9-5 comeback win; in the eighth inning, Blue Jays pitchers combine to allow six runs on one hit, eight walks and three wild pitches.

The Yankees win big at St. Petersburg over the Tampa Bay Rays, 10-2, thanks to third baseman (and Alex Rodriguez replacement) Yangervis Solarte—who finishes a triple shy of the cycle and initiates a triple play in the second inning; he’s batting .373 for the year.

The Pirates hand the Brewers their first road loss of the year with an 11-2 thrashing at Pittsburgh, hammering four home runs in the process—including the first of the year for reigning NL MVP Andrew McCutchen.


Friday, April 18
Atlanta’s Aaron Harang has a no-hitter at New York against the Mets through seven innings but is removed for a pinch-hitter in the eighth after throwing 121 pitches and walking six—four of them in his last two innings. David Wright breaks up the no-hitter with a two-out single in the eighth against Harang’s replacement, Luis Avilan, but it’s the only knock the Mets will get in a 6-0 loss. It’s the second time in three years Harang has been removed from a potential no-hitter.

After scoring just 16 runs in their ten previous games—seven of them losses—the Rays break out the bats and pummel the Yankees, 11-5. Nine of the Rays’ runs come between the sixth and eighth innings.

The Rangers have fun with the visiting White Sox as Martin Perez throws his first career shutout, a three-him gem, to improve to 3-0 on the year while Texas bats rack up 18 hits (including seven for extra bases) in a 12-0 romp.

Giancarlo Stanton shatters a 4-4, ninth-inning tie at Miami with his second career walk-off grand slam, propelling the Marlins to an 8-4 win over Seattle. Stanton reaches bases all five times on the night, with the home run, two singles and two walks; he knocks in five runs to lead the majors with 26 (no other player has more than 19).

The San Francisco Giants lose at San Diego to the Padres, 2-1, in what is their eighth straight game decided by a single run (they’ve won four of them). The streak ties a franchise record and is the longest in the majors since Minnesota played eight straight one-run contests of their own in 2005.


Saturday, April 19
In his fourth start of the season, Max Scherzer gets his first win as the Tigers take care of Los Angeles of Anaheim, 5-2, in their first win against the Angels in ten tries dating back to August 26, 2012. Helping out for the Tigers is Angels superstar Mike Trout, who strikes out in each of his four plate appearances—a career first.

The Rays outdo their offensive muscle of the previous night and destroy the Yankees, 16-1. Five homers are hit by the winning side, including two each for Wil Myers and catcher Ryan Hanigan (who knocks in six runs)—and the 164th career homer for Evan Longoria, surpassing Carlos Pena to become the all-time Rays leader.

St. Louis’ Lance Lynn picks up his fourth win in as many starts with a 4-3 decision at Washington; he helps his own cause with the first extra-base hit of his career, a run-scoring double during the Cardinals’ three-run second inning. The Nationals’ Bryce Harper is benched halfway through the game by manager Matt Williams for failing to hustle on a ground out.


Sunday, April 20
In a testosterone-charged game at Pittsburgh, the Brewers outlast the Pirates in 14 innings, 3-2, on a Khris Davis home run. The teams came to brief blows in the third after Carlos Gomez launches a straight-away drive he momentarily admires before realizing it isn’t leaving the ballpark; he settles for a triple, and Pirates pitcher Gerrit Cole angrily ridicules him when the play is done. Milwaukee Pirate Zach Duke gets the win, his first versus his old team; in eight lifetime appearances against the Bucs, he owns a 0.71 ERA.

The Angels hand the Tigers a 2-1 victory thanks to four errors—including three on one play in the first inning when Detroit’s Ian Kinsler scores after a series of bad throws on a stolen base attempt. The three miscues equals a major league record for one play. .


Coming to America (The Hard Way)
We now know a little bit more about how Yasiel Puig defected from Cuba to the United States and the Los Angeles Dodgers. Actually, we know a whole lot more, as ESPN the Magazine published (and posted) an exhaustingly detailed, complex but utterly fascinating account of Puig’s often harrowing journey from the Bay of Pigs in southern Cuba to Los Angeles, by way of Cancun, Mexico City and the U.S.-Texas border. (This, on the heels of a Los Angeles Magazine article that also discusses the defection but focuses more on Puig’s life to date.) If it is all to be believed—writer Scott Eden appeared to do his homework—the ESPN story exposes the complicated political and criminal mechanizations involved in the human trafficking of top-notch baseball talent off of Cuba.

For the most part, Puig comes off as an innocent bystander through his defection, amid an environment of powerful Mexican cartels and two-bit, get-rich wannabes way in over their heads. But what’s more troubling are revelations brought to the fore that, in order to win favor with the Cuban government and keep the heat off his back after several failed defection attempts, Puig ratted out potentially innocent people convicted and imprisoned by Cuban officials for human trafficking—and this may be a trend among current Cuban ballplayers asked to snitch for the Cuban government and throwing uninvolved people under the bus. (Both Puig and Cincinnati closer Aroldis Chapman are facing U.S. lawsuits for their possible roles in such schemes.)

The story suggests that Puig needs to watch his back, even now; a source told Eden that during spring training 2013, an apparent representative for the Los Zetas cartel made it all the way to Puig’s hotel room in Arizona and warned him to pay the money it lost when he fled Cancun (where Puig was brought after his defection). What strikes us is that Puig was then freely able to show off his skills to major league teams in Mexico City and then drive some 800 miles through the heart of Los Zetas territory to the U.S. border without the cartel using any means necessary to get him back.

In the aftermath of the article’s release, Puig isn’t talking, nor is his agent, nor are the Dodgers. With the story out in the open, it’s probably too late for jilted smugglers to finally get “their just due” and come after Puig—but you have to think that Puig, the Dodgers and Major League Baseball aren’t taking any chances.

We Know Who You Are
Like Puig, Mr. Met may understand the fear of a bullet in the back. In a new book on sports mascots (yes, you can now say that everything that needs to be written has been written), AJ Mass, the man in the mascot suit for the New York Mets, was at Shea Stadium on April 15, 1997 for the 50-year celebration of Jackie Robinson’s first game. So was President Bill Clinton—and a whole lot of Secret Service agents and a few sharpshooters to make sure the sellout crowd of 50,000 would behave in a non-threatening manner. (It was, after all, a Mets game.) Mass/Mr. Met was not to be exonerated; he was told beforehand to perform his antics anywhere but near Clinton. “Approach the president, and we go for the kill shot,” an agent told him. “Are we clear?”

One must have imagined Mass’ outright fright behind the frozen, uppity smile on the mascot’s baseball-like head.

Quotas and Challenges and Errors, Oh My…
This Week in MLB Video Replay Gone Wrong
wounded of the weekAs Baseball continued to be rightly beat up by both media and bloggers over its idea of expanded video replay, a few brave people jumped in front to defend the system—or more aptly, to apply lipstick on a pig. Not surprisingly, commissioner
Bud Selig stepped up to say that the system is, so far, “remarkable”—a one-word description that could be spun in many different directions; we prefer the sarcastic route.

But there was also Yahoo SportsJeff Passan, who wrote a piece basically telling replay’s critics to get over it and learn to love the system, because it’s working. But even he admitted that it was far from perfect, hinting that managerial challenges should be revisited and perhaps expunged, as we’ve said from the start. Does Passan also embrace our idea of replay officials initiating reviews from a booth upstairs? He mentions it but isn’t ready to give it thumbs up, because he somehow believes the reviews would take longer. Why he thinks that, he didn’t say.

As for us, we’ve written an open letter to Baseball saying that it’s not too late to take a hard, honest look at the replay method we developed four years ago. That’s all we’re asking, Baseball; just give it a read.

Get a Grip on It!
Initially lost in all the chatter over expanded video replay and revised home plate collision laws is the transfer rule, which quietly was amended during the offseason. Before, if you caught a ball and dropped it while transferring it to your throwing hand, it was still considered a catch. Now, if you have the ball secure in your glove, even for several seconds, and then drop it—it’s somehow not considered an official catch.

Baseball just can’t seem to get it right. The old interpretation was highly lenient on the fielders; the revised read hasn’t just tightened the leash, it’s all but eliminated it.

The bottom line should be this: If a player has solid control of the ball in his glove, it’s an out. It’s a common sense thing that Baseball and the umpires don’t seem to have their own grip on. But at least they’re aware of the issues; reports this past weekend are that MLB and the players’ union are huddling to bring a happy medium to the interpretation

Oh, Henry
The ugly past was revisited this past week when it was reported that Hank Aaron, in the midst of the 40th anniversary of his famed 715th home run that made him the all-time leader, started receiving racist letters and comments from the same kind of hate mongers that made his pursuit of Babe Ruth back in 1974 torturous. The Atlanta Braves, his old team and the folks promoting the celebration, received many of those letters on his behalf.

All of this happened 40 years ago because of something Aaron did: The competitive pursuit of another man’s record. This latest round of racist garbage occurred mostly because of something he said, in an interview with USA Today: “President Obama is left with his foot stuck in the mud from all of the Republicans with the way he’s treated,” Aaron said. “We have moved in the right direction, and there have been improvements, but we still have a long ways to go in the country. The bigger difference is that back then they had hoods. Now they have neckties and starched shirts.”

There’s nothing to justify the hate mail, but it would have helped had Aaron not compared the Republicans to the Ku Klux Klan.

How Dare You Rub it in When We Just Got Started!
The Houston Astros were incensed that Oakland’s Jed Lowrie tried to bunt his way to first base with the A’s up by seven runs this past Friday. Okay, so it’s part of the game’s unwritten code not to bunt with a big lead, but here’s the problem; Lowrie’s bunt took place in the first inning. Do the Astros think they’re so bad that they feel the need to throw in the towel after one inning—and thus the other team should ease off? We can qualify the Astros’ anger if all of this took place in the eighth inning, but not the first.

Lowrie failed in his attempt, but the Astros didn’t let him forget about out; when he came back to hit in the third, he had to dance around two pitches thrown in by the Astros’ Paul Clemens, then got into an animated discussion with Houston second baseman Jose Altuve before Astros manager Bo Porter came out to chew Lawrie out further. The A’s went on to win, 11-3.

Pitchin’ Cousins
Scott Cousins hasn’t quite made it as a major leaguer, lingering on the bench as a spare outfielder when he hasn’t been toiling in the minors; his only noteworthy feat in four big league seasons was running over San Francisco catcher Buster Posey in a notorious 2011 home plate collision that set in motion efforts to better protect the catcher from such crashes, with new rules taking effect this season. But after hitting just .233 at Triple-A last year and beginning this season without a team, Cousins has been signed on by the Texas Rangers—in an attempt to make a comeback as a pitcher. He has experience, having thrown during college. We’ll paraphrase what the Contra Costa TimesCarl Steward said upon hearing the news: With any luck, Cousins will get to cover home on a wild pitch against the Giants someday.

Day of the Pitcher
This past Wednesday was a good day to bet the under. For only the second time ever, 15 games were played in MLB as nobody scored more than six runs; five of those contests ended in shutout victories. The only reason one of the two teams (Boston) who scored six times managed to do so was because the opposing Chicago White Sox ran out of pitchers in the 14th inning—and second baseman Leury Garcia was plugged in, allowing two runs to the Red Sox. Additionally, there were three complete games (including two shutouts) thrown on the day after only one had been logged in the regular season’s first two-plus weeks to date.

Should We Establish the Blown Hold?
In that funky Red Sox-White Sox game, the insanity of awarding and stigmatizing pitchers on the score sheet was exposed. With Chicago ahead 3-2 in the ninth inning, Maikel Cleto came on to pitch—and proceeded to walk the bags full. In came closer Matt Lindstrom, who faced four batters and allowed only one to reach on an infield single—but one of the outs was a Grady Sizemore sac fly that scored the tying run. For his troubles, Lindstrom was charged with a blown save; Cleto, for walking all three batters he faced and leaving the mess for Lindstrom to deal with, was officially given credit for a hold. You may now shake your head in disbelief.

When We Told You to Knock the Ball Off the Cover, We Didn’t Mean it Literally
You would have thought Meadowlark Lemon and the Harlem Globetrotters were in the house, quietly sneaking in a joke ball during Friday’s game between the Pirates and Milwaukee Brewers at Pittsburgh. The Brewers’ Martin Maldonado hit a ground ball to Pirates third baseman Pedro Alvarez, but his throw to first all but died as part of the ball’s cover came loose, making it look like a blown tire desperately trying to chug it to the next gas station. It’s the second time this year that a ball has fallen apart in a major league game; Chicago White Sox slugger Jose Abreu also sent one unraveling on a foul ball earlier this month.

Paging Joe Sewell
In this day and age when everybody is striking out, here’s a refreshing change of pace: It took Atlanta’s Andrelton Simmons until his 48th at-bat of the season to strike out for the first time this year—and he did it admirably, going down on a foul tip in the seventh inning of Thursday’s game in Philadelphia. (By comparison, 18 other players had already struck out 20 times before this past Sunday.)

If You Can’t Beat Him, Sign Him
If the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim are looking for a catcher, they might want to consider a deal to land John Jaso from the A’s. In 22 career games at Angels Stadium, the 30-year-old Jaso has hit .389 with six home runs and 23 RBIs; in 372 games played elsewhere, he’s hitting .249 with 18 homers.

This Week's Challenger to Joe DiMaggio
After going 1-for-13 to start the season, the Dodgers’
Adrian Gonzalez slowly came back to life, recording a single hit in each of his next six games before really turning it on; he ends this past week with the majors’ longest active hitting streak at 15 games. During his run, Gonzo is hitting .344 with five homers and 16 RBIs. His career high is 18 games, set with the 2012 Red Sox.

League vs. League
The National League inched a little further ahead of their American League counterparts in the interleague wars thanks to the Miami Marlins, who swept the Seattle Mariners in a weekend series—and no thanks to the Chicago Cubs, who began the week getting shutout twice on the same day in New York against the Yankees. The current count has the NL ahead in interleague competition at 15-13, and although the year is young and the edge is thin, the NL will take any advantage after losing out to the Americans for ten straight years.

Wounded of the Week
wounded of the weekThe good doctors at Tommy John General continued busy this past week with one new patient admitted—Tampa Bay’s Matt Moore—and the prospects of another arriving soon after it was learned that New York Yankees starting pitcher Ivan Nova has a partially torn UCL.

Elsewhere, the MLB medical bandwagon included St. Louis starting pitcher Joe Kelly (hamstring), Kansas City outfielder Lorenzo Cain (strained groin), Toronto first baseman Adam Lind (back), Chicago White Sox starting pitcher Felipe Paulino (rotator cuff inflammation, after a series of horrendous starts), Texas starting pitcher Tanner Scheppers (elbow, also after a dismal start) and Los Angeles of Anaheim outfielder Kole Calhoun (sprained ankle, out for a month).


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