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MLB News & Moments You Should Know – July 23

Mets acquired Vogelbach from Pirates, Mariners' streak ends at 14.

Stay updated on everything baseball with our morning MLB News & Moments articles. We’ve got you covered to keep you in the know.

Trade season is officially open. Which team will make the biggest trade — either in name or impact — before the Aug. 2 deadline? Time will tell, but the first significant salvo was fired Friday when one of the teams in the Big Apple acquired a bat.

How will rivals counter? What other moves will that team make? Which surprise team will get into the sweepstakes?

 

Today’s Headlines

 

Mets Acquire Vogelbach From Pirates

You usually don’t see major-leaguers traded for major-leaguers, especially in 1-for-1 deals, but one was pulled off Friday when the New York Mets sent right-handed rookie reliever Colin Holderman to the Pittsburgh Pirates for first baseman-designated hitter Daniel Vogelbach. The left-handed hitter, who is slashing .228/.338/.430 with 12 homers and 34 RBIs, could be in the Mets’ lineup as soon as Saturday. Vogelbach is expected to boost the Mets’ production against right-handers as he is slashing .260/.365/.532 with all 12 of his homers and 27 RBIs against righties. His OPS+ vs. righties is 153. Holderman had a 2.04 ERA with 18 strikeouts in 17⅔ innings over 15 appearances.

Mariners No Longer Streaking

It wasn’t going to last forever, but no one knew when the ride would end. After winning 14 consecutive games to get back into wild-card contention in the American League, the Seattle Mariners were as hot as any team has been. But the All-Star break might have sapped some of that magic as the Mariners fell to the Houston Astros 5-3. The Astros are no slouch, having swept the New York Yankees in a doubleheader the day before and now increasing their lead in the AL West to 11 games over the Mariners, who fell one game short of tying the club-record winning streak of 15.

Blue Jays Bludgeon Red Sox

When someone hits an inside-the-park grand slam, you know it is going to be a good day. Raimel Tapia did that in the third inning, setting the pace for a wild 28-5 win by the Toronto Blue Jays over the Boston Red Sox at Fenway Park. The 28 runs are a club record, breaking the previous mark of 24. Lourdes Gurriel tied Frank Catalanotto with six hits in the game. Tapia’s inside-the-park granny came with two outs on what looked to be a routine fly to center field, but the Red Sox’s Jarren Duran never saw it, actually coming in a few steps, before the ball landed well behind him. By the time left fielder Alex Verdugo scampered over to get the ball, the speedy Tapia was on his way to the first inside-the-park slam in MLB since 2017.

Marlins’ Chisholm out 6 weeks

Pretty much the worst-case scenario came true when Miami Marlins All-Star second baseman Jazz Chisholm Jr. was diagnosed with a lumbar stress fracture, according to two beat reporters. Chisholm is expected to miss at least six weeks, with other observers saying he will be out longer. It probably puts a nail in the Marlins’ contending coffin this season, with Chisholm slashing .254/.325/.535 with 14 homers, 45 RBIs and 12 steals.

Another Rehab Start For deGrom

Mets ace Jacob deGrom, thought to be ready to return from a stress reaction in his right scapula, will throw Sunday before making another rehab start, manager Buck Schowalter said. After that, deGrom could be back in the Mets’ rotation. On Thursday, deGrom threw 60 pitches in a simulated game in Port St. Lucie, Fla., and reported that he felt “good.”

Brewers To Sign McGee

Left-hander Jake McGee, who started the season as the closer for the defending NL West champion San Francisco Giants, is set to sign a major-league deal with the Milwaukee Brewers, according to The Athletic’s Ken Rosenthal. The Brewers will only be responsible for a prorated portion of the major-league minimum salary for McGee, who was released by the Giants just before the All-Star break after posting a 7.17 ERA and converting just three of six save opportunities. The Giants are on the hook for the rest of McGee’s $2.5 million contract this season aside from the Brewers’ prorated portion of $700,000. McGee has a $500,000 club option for next season. McGee, if straightened out, could be a solid late-game left-handed option for the Crew, who also have southpaws Josh Hader and Brent  Suter in the bullpen.

Former Cubs, Braves Outfielder Smith Dies

Dwight Smith Jr., the 1989 NL Rookie of the Year runner-up with the Chicago Cubs, died at the age of 58. Smith slashed .275/.333/.422 with 46 homers and 226 RBIs across eight seasons with four teams, including the California Angels, Baltimore Orioles and Atlanta Braves. He finished a distant second to Cubs teammate Jerome Walton in the 1989 NL Rookie of the Year voting after slashing .324/.382/.493 with nine homers, 42 RBIs and nine steals. Walton was at .293/.335/.385 with five homers, 46 RBIs and 24 steals.

Agencies Join Forces

One huge sports agency became even bigger when Wasserman Media Group purchased Jet Sports Management. Wasserman’s baseball division was already a big hitter in the sports agent business, but this increases the agency’s clout not to mention stable of players significantly.

 

Best Moments From Yesterday

 

Anyone Need A Drink?

Lourdes Gurriel did a lot in the Jays’ rout of the Red Sox, tying the club record with six hits. As the DH, he also had time to make a few beverages.

Bellinger Rejuvenated With Slam

There is nothing like beating your rival. When you do it dramatically for the second straight day, it’s even sweeter. Cody Bellinger’s eighth inning grand slam on an 0-2 hanging curveball from Sam Long, gave the Los Angeles Dodgers a 5-1 victory over the San Francisco Giants in a key series between the bitter foes. The struggling Bellinger said: “It feels pretty good.”

Mariners Unveil 2023 All-Star Logo

The Mariners are already to host the 2023 All-Star Game and released the logo for next year’s game.

 

Injuries and Other Moves

 

Mariners outfielder Kyle Lewis, the 2020 AL Rookie of the Year who has been on the seven-day concussion injured list since June 1, was activated. Outfielder Justin Upton was optioned to Triple-A Tacoma, but he opted instead to become a free agent. Upton, hitting .175 in 17 games with Seattle, was released by the Los Angeles Angels on April 2 despite being owed $28 million this season, the final of a five-year, $106 million deal.

Chicago White Sox outfielder Luis Robert was placed on the 10-day IL with blurred vision. Catcher Yasmani Grandal (lower-back spasms) was activated from the IL.

New York Yankees right-handed reliever Michael King sustained a broken right elbow and is expected to miss the rest of the season, according to Joel Sherman of the New York Post. King has been a valuable piece of the Yankees’ bullpen with a 2.29 ERA.

Cincinnati Reds catcher Tyler Stephenson fractured his clavicle when he took a foul ball from St. Louis Cardinals slugger Paul Goldschmidt off his shoulder. It is unknown how long Stephenson will be out.

Red Sox left-hander Chris Sale was officially placed on the 15-day IL with a broken left pinkie. He had surgery this week and is expected to return this season.

Right-handed reliever Vinny Nittoli will sign a minor-league deal with the Toronto Blue Jays, according to Robert Murry of FanSided. Nittoli recently opted out of a minors deal with the Yankees.

The Washington Nationals have signed outfielder David Dahl and right-hander Daniel Ponce de Leon to minor-league deals, according to Jesse Dougherty of the Washington Post. Dahl had been with the Milwaukee Brewers before being released, while Ponce de Leon was with the Mariners and Los Angeles Angels this season.

 

Articles You Should Read

 

Buck O’Neil is finally going into the Hall of Fame this weekend Bob LeMoine, SABR

Going inside the potential deals for Juan Soto — Barry Svrluga, Washington Post

In the minors since 1988, this guy gets his first real MLB call Sunday — Girard Gilberto, MiLB.com

What happened to the Angels in the first half? — Mike DiGiovanna, Los Angeles Times

 

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Featured image by Justin Paradis (@JustParaDesigns on Twitter)

Steve Drumwright

Steve Drumwright is a lifelong baseball fan who retired as a player before he had the chance to be cut from the freshman team in high school. He recovered to become a sportswriter and have a successful journalism career at newspapers in Wisconsin and California. Follow him on Twitter @DrummerWrites.

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