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Sunday’s slate of baseball games gave us a handful of exciting finishes — walk-offs, heroic homers, come-from-behind rallies and, of course, a little bit of bickering.
Here’s a closer look:
Controversial Win of the Day: The Detroit Tigers beat the Boston Red Sox 7-5, scoring three runs in the eighth inning to bust open a 4-4 game. But that’s not the controversial part. It’s the play above — Daniel Nava dropping a fly ball in the eighth on what looked like the exchange from his glove to his throwing hand. The umpires ruled it a dropped ball. Nava and manager John Farrell argued, with Farrell eventually getting ejected and the umps not changing their mind. That helped Detroit put up their three runs and eventually get the win.
Had the umpires ruled Nava dropped the ball on the exchange, it would have been an out. That wouldn’t necessarily have stopped the Tigers rally, but it couldn’t have helped it.
Wild Finish of the Day: The Pittsburgh Pirates were down 6-3 to the Los Angeles Angels going into the ninth inning. That’s when things got wild. The Pirates rallied for three runs to tie the game against Angels closer Ernesto Frieri, who isn’t Jose Valverde, so this kinda thing isn’t an everyday possibility. Once the game went into extra innings, the Pirates put up another four runs, including a two-run single by Travis Snider, to make the score 10-6.
After giving up seven runs in the ninth and tenth, you’d think the Angels could be deflated. Actually, they rallied for three runs of their own in the bottom of the tenth. The score was 10-9, with two outs and runners at second and third when Mike Trout came up for the Angels. When it looked like the score might swing again, Trout stuck out to end the game.
Walk-Off of the Day: Kendrys Morales played the hero role in Seattle, hitting a three-run walk-off homer in the tenth inning to give the Mariners a 6-3 win over the Oakland Athletics.
(Getty Images) Back-to-Back Heroes of the Day: Tied 1-1 in the ninth, the Los Angeles Dodgers got back-to-back homers from Adrian Gonzalez and Hanley Ramirez to earn a 3-1 win over the Padres.
(Getty Images) Blue Jays 13, Orioles 5: The Jays win their 11th in a row, as Edwin Encarnacion, J.P. Arencibia and Jose Bautista have big days.
Rangers 2, Cardinals 1: Sunday Night Baseball turns into Monday Morning Baseball after a three-hour rain delay. When it clears up, the Rangers finish a three-game sweep of the Cards.
Reds 4, Diamondbacks 2: On “Star Wars” day in Arizona, Mat Latos plays the role of Sith — striking out 13 and surrendering just one run for the Reds.
(USA Today) Marlins 7, Giants 2: The Marlins get two homers from Justin Ruggiano to take three of four games from the Giants.
Rockies 7, Nationals 6: Rockies hold off a four-run, eighth-inning rally by the Nats.
Mets 8, Phillies 0: Matt Harvey dominates again: six innings, two hits and six strikeouts.
Cubs 14, Astros 6: Ryan Sweeney has six RBIs for the Cubs against the Astros, which is like four RBIs against a regular team.
Rays 3, Yankees 1: James Loney’s two-run single in the seventh inning gives Rays the win.
Royals 7, White Sox 6: The Royals scrap together three runs in the eighth for a come-from-behind win.
Braves 7, Brewers 4: Braves break a 24-inning scoreless streak, then decide seven runs sounds good.
Twins 5, Indians 3: Thank you and goodbye. Pedro Hernandez, called up from Triple-A to make an emergency start, helps the Twins avoid a sweep, then gets sent back down to the minors.
”I’m a big chips and salsa man, and there was some excellent chips and salsa. I wanted to talk to Jake [McGee] and Joel [Peralta]. So I got a little bucket of salsa, a little bucket of chips and I sat down with both of them. It was a good moment to just exchange thoughts, and I wanted them to know how much I believe in them, because that was a tough game for those guys.”
— Rays manager Joe Maddon, about a pre-game chat with two of his relief pitchers who had a tough day on Saturday and did much better on Sunday in Tampa Bay’s 3-1 win.
Things obviously aren’t going well for MLB umpires if they’ve resorted to Storm Trooper bodyguards. Just kidding — this is from “Star Wars” day at the Arizona Diamondbacks game.
• Michael Cuddyer of the Rockies extended his hitting streak to 21 games, the longest in baseball this year.
• In their last 10 games the Miami Marlins are 6-4 — against tough opponents: The Giants, Cardinals and Diamondbacks. (via Clark Spencer).
• Angels closer Ernesto Frieri had retired 22 straight batters going into Sunday’s game. Then he blew a save, giving up three runs in 2/3 innings to the Pirates in the ninth inning.
Baseball is back. Don’t miss anything.
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