Mark Townsend

  • Randy Flores hired as Cardinals scouting director in aftermath of hacking scandal

    Mark Townsend at Big League Stew 2 mins ago

    For all the success and stability the St. Louis Cardinals have enjoyed over the past 15 years, they've recently experienced a surprising amount of turnover atop their scouting department.

    On Friday, they added another new face to the department, hiring former reliever Randy Flores as their fourth different director of amateur scouting in the past five seasons. Flores takes over for Chris Correa, who was dismissed earlier this summer after admitting to having a role in the Cardinals’ breach of the Astros’ computer network.

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    Correa was with the Cardinals long enough to oversee their 2015 draft, but took an extended leave absence soon after and was ultimately fired on July 2 amid the investigation.

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  • Lance Lynn carves up Giants, injures ankle in Cardinals win

    Mark Townsend at Big League Stew 11 hrs ago

    Take a look around the league with Big League Stew's daily wrap up. We'll hit on all of the biggest moments from the day that you may have missed, while providing highlights, photos and interesting stats.

    It was a bittersweet afternoon for Cardinals right-hander Lance Lynn.

    On the plus side, he was excellent on the hill, silencing the San Francisco Giants bats for seven scoreless innings in the Cardinals 6-0 victory. Lynn allowed six hits, walked two and struck out two en route to his 11th win.

    On the down side, he was forced from the game with an ankle injury that according to reports looked worse than it actually was.

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    The injury occurred in the eighth inning when Lynn attempted to field Juan Perez's chopper. Lynn fielded it cleanly, but then twisted his right ankle trying to throw to first. The Cardinals are calling it a mild ankle sprain, though given what happened to Adam Wainwright this season Cardinals fans might hold their breath until they see him pitch again.

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  • Fan dies after falling from upper deck at Turner Field

    Mark Townsend at Big League Stew 13 hrs ago

    A fan has died after falling from the upper deck into the lower-level stands at Turner Field during Saturday's Yankees-Braves game.

    The tragic incident occurred while the Yankees were batting in the seventh inning. Alex Rodriguez had just been announced as a pinch-hitter when Fox Sports 1 play-by-play man Justin Kutcher reacted to the fan's fall and suggested play be halted.

    Most of the crowd went unaware initially as their attention was focused on Rodriguez. The players and fans appeared unaware as well, as the action continued without interruption.

    Before Rodriguez settled in, the Fox Sports 1 broadcast briefly flashed a shot of the crowd as stunned fans looked on and medical personnel quickly arrived on the scene.

    Here's more from the Associated Press: 

    Bad scene, fan fell from an upper deck behind home plate. They spent 5-10 minutes trying to revive him, took him on out body board

    The fan was taken to Grady Hospital in Atlanta and was later pronounced dead from his injuries. 

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  • Mets acquire former D-Backs closer Addison Reed to solidify bullpen

    Mark Townsend at Big League Stew 14 hrs ago

    Even with his New York Mets holding a six-game lead in the National League East, general manager Sandy Alderson is still looking for ways to solidify his roster.

    On Saturday, he went for an upgrade in the bullpen, acquiring Addison Reed from the Arizona Diamondbacks.

    ESPN New York's Adam Rubin was the first to report a deal was in place, pending the physical.

    Source: #Mets acquire Addison Reed from #Dbacks pending physical.

    Newsday's Marc Carig has since confirmed the deal, noting that Reed will likely be a two month rental since he'll likely carry an expensive arbitration price tag.

    Here's how the rest of the deal shakes out. 

    The #Dbacks will get Matt Koch and Isan Diaz from #Mets once physicals are approved from YIV_FILTER_HOLDER_0002 in Addison Reed trade.

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  • Vin Scully returning for 67th and likely final season with Dodgers

    Mark Townsend at Big League Stew 16 hrs ago

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    It's official. Vin Scully, arguably the greatest living broadcaster in baseball, sports or any other form of entertainment, will return to Dodgers television booth for what he expects to be his final season in 2016.

    With help from Los Angeles Lakers legend Magic Johnson and late-night talk show host Jimmy Kimmel, Scully's 2016 return was officially announced to the fans at Dodger Stadium during Friday's game against the Chicago Cubs.

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    An announcement was also made on social media, where baseball fans collectively rejoiced. 

    OFFICIAL: It'll be a very pleasant 2016. Vin Scully to return for his 67th season.

    Scully, 87, met with the media on Saturday to discuss his future. Something the always humble Scully couldn't believe was necessary. 

    You're kind of a big deal, Vin. And not just in Los Angeles. 

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  • Lewisberry, Pa. wins U.S. Championship, advances to LLWS final

    Mark Townsend at Big League Stew 17 hrs ago

    The closest thing to a home team at the Little League World Series emerged from the pack on Saturday to claim the United States Championship.

    The little leaguers from Lewisberry, Pa. — a community of 356 people that's located 97 miles south of the host city Williamsport — earned the crown by knocking off the very capable team from Pearland, Texas, 3-2.  

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    The game wasn't decided until the sixth and final inning when Lewisberry's Chayton Krauss smacked an opposite field single to score Braden Kolmansberger with the game winner. Kolmansberger started the rally by drawing a walk, and then moved to third on Jaden Henline's single. Henline also homered in the fourth inning to tie the score 2-2.

    Cole Wagner, who had starred for Lewisberry leading up to the final, was a big part of the win as well. He connected on a first-inning home run, his fourth of the tournament, and pitched 5 2/3 innings of two-run ball before being lifted due to pitch count restrictions.

  • Hat trick! Edwin Encarnacion hits three homers, drives in nine in Jays win

    Mark Townsend at Big League Stew 19 hrs ago

    If Major League Baseball is really concerned about pace of play, they might have to consider instituting a short-term mercy rule for all of the remaining Toronto Blue Jays games this season.

    Just ask the Detroit Tigers.

    Toronto's "no mercy" tour continued at their expense on Saturday afternoon at the Rogers Centre. The Jays offense erupted early and often as they slugged their way to a 15-1 victory.

    The star on this particular day was Edwin Encarnacion, who entered play with a 23-game hitting streak. It didn't take him long to extend it to 24. In the first inning, Encarnacion started the scoring with a mammoth three-run homer. 

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    That was just the beginning though for Encarnacion. In the sixth inning, he stepped up again and launched a two-run homer off Guido Knudson. One inning later, he capped his monster afternoon with a grand slam against Alex Wilson, giving him three home runs and a career-high nine RBIs for the game. 

    They aren't kidding.

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  • Jonny Gomes fully embraces first career relief appearance against Yankees

    Mark Townsend at Big League Stew 21 hrs ago

    Position player pitching appearances have become such a regular part of baseball this season, we probably haven't appreciated some of the performances — both pitching and entertainment wise — to the fullest extent.

    That wasn't a problem, though, when Atlanta's Jonny Gomes took the hill in the Braves' 15-4 loss against the Yankees on Friday night. Gomes embraced his first career relief appearance from the time Freddi Gonzalez told him to warm up to the moment he danced off the mound after striking out Yankees reliever Bryan Mitchell.

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    It was, in a word, glorious.

    It all began with Gomes' entrance. When the bullpen gate opened, Gomes jogged to the hill like a confident reliever with some pep in his step. Of course, his confidence was immediately challenged when Chris Young greeted him with a home run. However, after first being taken aback, Gomes simply tipped his cap, collected himself and moved on. 

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  • Tropicana Field catwalks strike again, leave Kevin Kiermaier hanging on wall

    Mark Townsend at Big League Stew 23 hrs ago

    If not for those pesky catwalks, baseball at Tropicana Field would be pretty much normal.

    Granted, the ballpark itself would still be slightly dull and not aesthetically pleasing, but the baseball would be normal. And that's all we can ask for.

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    About those catwalks, though. They definitely exist, and they aren't going anywhere any time soon, which means they'll continue wreaking havoc on Major League Baseball games.

    In fact, this week alone we've seen two notable instances of the catwalks interfering with play. On Thursday, they helped out the home team by robbing Minnesota's Miguel Sano of a monster home run. Sano's smash, which according to one estimate would have traveled 470 feet, struck a catwalk that's considered in play. The ball remained live, and Sano was only able to make it to second base. 

    Then this happened.


  • Blake Swihart's inside-the-park homer helps Red Sox stop streaking Mets

    Mark Townsend at Big League Stew 1 day ago

    Take a look around the league with Big League Stew's daily wrap up. We'll hit on all of the biggest moments from the day that you may have missed, while providing highlights, photos and interesting stats.

    Citi Field wasn't home, sweet home, for the New York Mets on Friday night. After winning seven straight in Colorado and Philadelphia, the Mets returned home and fell 6-4 to the last-place Boston Red Sox.

    After having his last start skipped, Matt Harvey returned to toss six scoreless innings but was long gone when Boston's Blake Swihart raced around the bases for an inside-the-park home run leading off the 10th inning.

    Upon further review, Swihart's blast actually cleared the wall and should have been ruled a conventional home run on the field. It wasn't, but it didn't much matter as the ball bounced far enough away from center fielder Juan Lagares for Swihart to round the bases. Any way you score it, it's a home run, but we'll always acknowledge a catcher showing off his wheels. 

    Ortiz's homer was No. 493 for his marvelous career. He's now tied with Lou Gehrig and Fred McGriff for 27th place on the all-time home run list.

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