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Cubs’ 23-Game Win Streak with Jake Arrieta Starting Snapped vs. Dodgers

The Chicago Cubs have finally tasted defeat when Jake Arrieta takes the mound, as the Los Angeles Dodgers‘ 5-0 victory Tuesday night at Wrigley Field snapped the team’s 23-game winning streak with the 30-year-old ace starting.

Arrieta remains undefeated on the year at 9-0, however. Clayton Richard was credited with the loss.

Entering Tuesday, Arrieta and the Cubs were tied for the longest win streak in major league history with Kris Medlen and the Atlanta Braves, who won 23 straight games in which he started from 2010 to 2012, per the Elias Sports Bureau (via ESPN Stats & Info).

Using data from Elias, ESPN Stats & Info provided a look at some of the pitchers Arrieta passed on his way to the top:

Arrieta pitched well enough Tuesday to give the Cubs a chance to surpass Medlen and the Braves, going seven innings and allowing only two hits while striking out eight.

The Cubs highlighted how his performance lowered his already outstanding ERA:

However, Dodgers pitcher Scott Kazmir was even better. He kept Chicago’s bats quiet by allowing only one hit in six innings while striking out seven.

Even though the Cubs saw their six-game winning streak come to an end Tuesday, they sit at a major league-best 35-15 for the season.

That is a testament to not only how well the team has been playing but also Arrieta’s dominance. Chicago hadn’t lost a game Arrieta started since July 25, 2015, and that was a small blemish on what turned out to be a Cy Young Award-winning season.

Though Dodgers ace Clayton Kershaw is lurking with a National League-best 1.56 ERA, Arrieta could be on his way to a second straight Cy Young Award if he keeps throwing this well all season.

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Jason Grilli to Blue Jays: Latest Trade Details, Comments, Reaction

The Toronto Blue Jays announced Tuesday they acquired right-handed reliever Jason Grilli in a trade with the Atlanta Braves, who received right-handed pitching prospect Sean Ratcliffe in return

Toronto also received cash considerations in the deal that shipped its 18th-round pick in 2013 to Atlanta.

The 39-year-old Grilli appeared in 21 games for the Braves this season in his second year with the organization, and Toronto will be his ninth team in his 14-year career. The veteran recorded a career-high 33 saves in 2013 in an All-Star campaign. 

Grilli has been a proficient reliever since his second season with the Pittsburgh Pirates in 2012, when his strikeout-to-walk ratio jumped from 2.47 in 2011 to 4.09, per FanGraphs. The following season, he struck out 74 batters while walking only 13.

Grilli has struggled so far this year, striking out 23 batters and walking 13 while playing on a 15-win ballclub in Atlanta. Now he’ll get the chance to play for the reigning American League East champions.

The Blue Jays are five games back of the Boston Red Sox in the division coming into Tuesday, and Grilli should provide some immediate bullpen help. Toronto has a bullpen ERA of 3.89, which is 16th-best in the major leagues.

Toronto could use Grilli as a setup man for Roberto Osuna, who has 11 saves and an ERA of only 1.17 up to this point. Bob Mackowycz of TSN Radio doesn’t think the Blue Jays aren’t getting the Grilli of years past, however:

There’s enough time for the Blue Jays to make a charge at the Red Sox. But as powerful and talented as their offense is, they need pitching help. Grilli may be getting older, but he’ll provide plenty of experience for a young pitching staff.


Stats from unless otherwise noted.   

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Danny Santana Injury: Updates on Twins CF’s Hamstring and Return

Minnesota Twins center fielder Danny Santana will be sidelined for the foreseeable future after suffering a left hamstring injury Monday.

Continue for updates.

Twins Calling Up Buxton in Place of Santana

Monday, May 30

Santana is heading to the disabled list, and the Twins are calling up former No. 2 overall pick Byron Buxton to take his place, per Dustin Morse of the Twins’ communications team.

Santana suffered the injury during Monday’s game against the Oakland Athletics, per Rhett Bollinger of The 25-year-old went 2-for-3 before exiting the contest.

This is the second time this year Santana has landed on the disabled list because of hamstring issues. The team placed him on the 15-day DL on April 10 after he suffered a right hamstring injury.

Santana has improved from his 2015 campaign, during which he batted .215 in 91 games, but he still has plenty of work to do before getting back to his numbers from 2014, when he hit seven home runs while batting .319 in 101 games as a rookie.

The Twins, sitting at 15-35, will miss Santana in the lineup but should hope for the Buxton who has been playing well at Triple-A Rochester. Buxton has batted .333 to go with six homers in 28 games. The talent is there, but it’s up to Buxton to play better at the major league level.

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Dustin Ackley Injury: Updates on Yankees 1B’s Shoulder and Return

New York Yankees first baseman Dustin Ackley will miss the season and undergo surgery on a torn labrum suffered on May 29. 

Continue for updates.

Surgery on the Horizon for Ackley

Tuesday, May 31

Manager Joe Girardi said Ackley will have surgery to repair his torn labrum, per Joel Sherman of the New York Post.

Ackley Struggling in First Season With Yankees

Ackley has played 28 games this year and has batted .148 in his first full season in pinstripes.

Ackley played only seven games in April and recorded one hit in that span. His struggles continued into May, as he’s batting .178 and has driven in only four runs.

He suffered the shoulder injury Sunday against the Tampa Bay Rays while sliding. New York has called up infielder Rob Refsnyder to take Ackley’s place and put Ackley on the 15-day disabled list for the time being, per George A. King III of the New York Post.

The Yankees (24-25) came into Monday sitting in fourth place in the American League East, and their offense has been a collective disappointment. New York has scored 190 runs so far this season, sixth-worst in the major leagues.


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Rougned Odor Suspension Reduced: Latest Details, Comments and Reaction

Texas Rangers second baseman Rougned Odor’s suspension has been reduced by one game.

Odor, who punched Toronto Blue Jays outfielder Jose Bautista during a game on May 15, will be suspended seven games instead of the eight-game punishment the league originally handed out, according to Jon Heyman of MLB Network.

Odor’s suspension means Texas will call 23-year-old Jurickson Profar back up to the major league roster, according to T.R. Sullivan of

Before landing the right hook that shocked the baseball world, the 22-year-old Odor was having his best big league season to date. He was batting .286 to go along with seven home runs and became the Rangers’ go-to leadoff guy.

But since that punch to Bautista, Odor’s numbers have taken a hit; he’s batting .152 since May 16. Texas went 4-4 in that span. Odor filed an appeal with MLB, which allowed him to keep playing even after it announced his suspension.

While Bautista’s slide looked to be intentional, it was inevitable Odor would be suspended for throwing a punch, let alone connecting successfully.

Because of Odor’s struggles at the plate lately, this time off may help him to collect himself before rejoining the club. His suspension will begin on Friday. With Odor out, the Rangers have a good opportunity to see what Profar—their former top minor league player—can bring to the table.

Profar has not played for the Rangers since 2013 because of nagging shoulder injuries and sat out all of the 2015 season. He was slated to be the second baseman of the future when Texas sent Ian Kinsler to the Detroit Tigers for Prince Fielder, but that never came to fruition because of his injuries and the emergence of Odor.

Profar batted .284 and hit five homers in 41 games for Triple-A Round Rock this season. The Rangers could use that kind of production for the next week, especially at the top of the lineup.


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Joey Gallo Recalled from Triple-A Round Rock by Rangers

After placing outfielder Drew Stubbs on the 15-day disabled list, the Texas Rangers announced Monday that they called up young star Joey Gallo to the major league roster from Triple-A.

The 22-year-old outfielder/third baseman from Las Vegas played 24 games for the Round Rock Express this season while batting .265 and hitting eight home runs. This will be Gallo’s second stint with the Rangers. He has appeared in 36 games and hit six home runs while batting .204 in his major league career.  

The Rangers called up Gallo on June 2 of last year, and he made an impact from the start. He went 3-for-4 at the plate in his first game and hit his first career major league homer in front of his home fans against the Chicago White Sox.

From June 2-17, Gallo batted .260 and hit five homers, including one off Los Angeles Dodgers pitcher Clayton Kershaw at Dodger Stadium on June 17. Gallo’s production took a major hit over the next 11 games, as he recorded only six hits in 40 plate appearances.

The former Bishop Gorman High School product was called up again in September but continued to struggle. Gallo hit only one homer in 25 plate appearances while batting .143.

Stefan Stevenson of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram noted Gallo would be available off the bench for the Rangers’ game on Monday at Globe Life Park in Arlington, Texas, against the Los Angeles Angels.

Gallo is capable of hitting any pitch he sees out of the park but struggled with his plate discipline during his time with the Rangers, striking out 57 times and drawing only 15 walks. But there’s no denying he brings much-needed power to the Texas lineup from the left side of the plate.

This could mean the Rangers will get their first glimpse of playing Gallo in the outfield. Texas is set at center field and left field with veteran Ian Desmond and 21-year-old Nomar Mazara, which means Gallo could move to right field.

Texas is 1.5 games out of first place in the American League West, but fans will get a look into the future with Gallo returning to the major league roster.


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Carlos Beltran Hits 400th Career Home Run: Latest Comments and Reaction

New York Yankees outfielder Carlos Beltran hit his 400th career home run in the bottom of the sixth inning of Sunday’s game against the Chicago White Sox.

The Bronx Bombers sent out this tweet after Beltran’s blast:

Beltran’s milestone shot was a two-run homer and gave the Yankees a 5-4 lead. He launched a 2-2 fastball from Zach Duke over the left field wall of Yankee Stadium, his 42nd homer in two-plus years wearing pinstripes.

Going into that at-bat, Beltran hadn’t had much success against the White Sox reliever, per Dan Hayes of CSN Chicago:

The eight-time All-Star became the 54th player to reach the 400-dinger club, according to Yankees PR, but he also joined a short list of players from Puerto Rico:

Not only has Beltran been an impact player at the plate, but he spent his early years as one of the game’s best base stealers. ESPN Stats & Info noted Beltran also finds himself in the exclusive company of some of baseball’s best all-around players:

Jon Heyman of MLB Network acknowledged Beltran’s defensive talent and wonders if Cooperstown is in his future:

The only downside to Beltran’s career is he’s yet to win a World Series. He finally reached the Fall Classic for the first time in his storied career in 2013 with the St. Louis Cardinals, but they lost to the Boston Red Sox.

It’s debatable whether Beltran should be a Hall of Famer, but there aren’t many players who have batted .280 while showcasing the combination of power and speed that the 39-year-old has for the majority of his career.

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Dusty Baker Comments on Potentially Changing Lineup After Bryce Harper’s 6 Walks

Washington Nationals manager Dusty Baker doesn’t plan to change his lineup after reigning National League MVP Bryce Harper reached base seven times without recording a single hit on Sunday.   

“I thought about it hard and long, but a few days doesn’t merit you switching it up,” Baker said, per Chelsea Janes of the Washington Post. “If he had gotten one hit one of those times, you wouldn’t be asking me this today. Not yet.”

The Chicago Cubs walked Harper 13 times during their four-game series against the Nationals, with six of them coming in Washington’s 4-3 loss Sunday in 13 innings. Harper went 1-for-4 in the series with one RBI.

The Las Vegas native has hit 10 home runs and bats third in the lineup. Third baseman Ryan Zimmerman is normally the cleanup hitter, but the veteran has batted .236 this year.

Baker was also asked about moving the newly acquired Daniel Murphy to the No. 4 spot. Murphy leads Washington with 45 hits and is batting .395, but having a left-handed bat follow the left-handed Harper could cause issues late in games, according to Baker.

“What happens if I switch it up against this team, and they have three left-handed relievers in the bullpen, and they can bring in their lefties to take care of my two guys that are hot in the fifth, seventh and ninth, and only use three guys out of their bullpen?” Baker said, per Janes.

The Nationals came into Monday at 19-12 and trailing the New York Mets by a half-game in the National League East. It’s too early for Baker to consider a lineup change since the one he has currently resulted in wins, and Harper won’t be walked six times every game.

If it becomes a constant issue, then Baker should consider moving Murphy up just to ensure instant offense near the top of the lineup. Zimmerman’s struggles at the plate have been well-documented the last two years, and he’s not a capable run producer at this stage in his career anymore. 


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Jose Reyes Reportedly to Be Suspended 60-80 Games for Alleged Offseason Incident

Colorado Rockies shortstop Jose Reyes is reportedly expected to learn his punishment soon after facing domestic violence allegations from October, according to Jon Heyman of MLB Network.

Heyman noted the suspension is expected to be at least 60 games, but it may end up being closer to 80 games, “or about a half a season.”

Reyes was arrested in Maui on Oct. 31 after reportedly getting into a physical altercation with his wife in the hotel room they were staying at. Chelsea Davis of Hawaii News Now reported Reyes grabbed his wife by the throat and shoved her into a sliding glass door. 

While the former All-Star wasn’t criminally charged, Heyman reported MLB is expected to hand down a ban in the next few days and sees the incident in Maui as more serious than the alleged domestic violence incident involving New York Yankees closer Aroldis Chapman in December:

Reyes’ offense has been seen as more serious, as hotel workers at their Maui hotel reported that Reyes’ wife Katherine suffered injuries to her neck, wrist and thigh. Katherine did not cooperate with police, leading to charges being dropped. Nor has she cooperated with MLB.

Commissioner Rob Manfred has authority to impose bans for domestic abuse stemming from the policy done jointly with the players’ union.

Reyes’ ban is expected to be announced in coming days. It isn’t known whether MLB and the union have agreed on a specific length, or if Manfred might impose a penalty and let the union decide whether to challenge the length. Reyes and the union could grieve any ban imposed by Manfred, though in the case of Chapman, 30 games was agreed upon.

The Rockies are Reyes’ third team since he signed a six-year, $106 million deal with the Miami Marlins in December 2011. Miami sent him to the Toronto Blue Jays in November 2012, and then the Blue Jays shipped him to Colorado last year in the trade centered around All-Star shortstop Troy Tulowitzki.

Colorado has been able to withstand Reyes’ absence with the emergence of rookie shortstop Trevor Story. The 23-year-old shortstop is batting .272 and has hit 11 home runs so far for the near-.500 Rockies.

Even if Reyes is out for a lengthy period of time, Colorado has its shortstop of the future. If the Rockies don’t move Reyes, they’ll still have to pay the remainder of his contract, which includes $22 million in 2017.

While voiding contracts isn’t a normal occurrence, there have been instances where teams have gotten financial relief in return. That could be something to keep an eye on with Reyes and the Rockies.

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Mike Trout Trade Speculation Shot Down by Angels GM

Don’t expect the Los Angeles Angels to trade Mike Trout anytime soon, if ever.

Angels general manager Billy Eppler said Friday that despite losing starting pitchers Garrett Richards and Andrew Heaney possibly for the year, he will not trade the former American League Most Valuable Player for prospects.

“We have no intent or desire to consider moving Mike Trout—he’s not moving,” Eppler said, per Fox Sports’ Ken Rosenthal. “He’s an impact player, a huge piece in a championship core.”

Trout signed a six-year extension worth $144.5 million in March 2014 prior to his fourth big league season. The four-time All-Star also has a no-trade clause in his contract, per Rosenthal, so he could decline any trade even if the Angels wanted to move him.

Los Angeles (13-15) entered Friday in third place in the American League West behind the Texas Rangers and Seattle Mariners. Tommy John surgery may soon be on the horizon for Richards, per’s Michael Eaves, and Heaney has a torn ulnar collateral ligament, per Jeff Passan of Yahoo Sports.

The Angels are in need of pitching depth, but they also need help with their farm system. Baseball America ranked them dead last in terms of minor league talentthe third year in a row they’ve ranked 27th or below.

“This team was up against a lot of adversity last year and fought to the end,” Eppler said, per Rosenthal. “We’ve got a lot of character, a lot of the same guys on the club. They will not back down from a fight.”

Trout is on his way to his fifth consecutive All-Star appearance. He came into Friday batting .317 with seven home runs. His talent at the plate and in center field doesn’t come around often. While Trout would bring in a major haul in return, the situation would need to get much worse for the Angels to even entertain the thought of trading him.


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