Los Angeles Times


ANAHEIM, Calif.(TNS) —The latest buzz concerning Shohei Ohtani started early Tuesday.


Way early, like four hours before the game early.


That’s when manager Mike Scioscia’s posted lineup in the Angels’ clubhouse became public knowledge, with certain portions of the public, at least, ecstatic about the possibilities of Mike Trout leading off and Ohtani batting second.


No one said anything about what could potentially happen later to Jose Alvarez, the reliever who was so reliable for so long this season — until the arrival of the latest eighth inning.


Alvarez entered the game Tuesday having given three runs in 21 appearances and then gave up three runs while getting only one out as the Angels lost to Houston, 5-3.


Alvarez hadn’t pitched since Thursday, Scioscia explaining that the left-hander simply was fatigued by his extensive early-season use.


Against the Astros, he failed to protect a 3-1 lead against a lineup known to be tough to solve.


“Those guys did a good job in the batter’s box,” Scioscia said.


Twins stop Cards


MINNEAPOLIS — It’s been a pretty lousy May for two of the Twins’ youngest and most talented players. Jose Berrios had a 7.15 ERA in two starts, and Byron Buxton was 1-for-13 since recovering from a fractured toe.


But maybe June came early.


Berrios’ overpowering fastball and Buxton’s uncontainable speed played critical roles Tuesday as the Twins beat the Cardinals for the fifth straight meeting, 4-1 at Target Field. The Twins snapped a dreary streak of 16 scoreless innings, and two consecutive quiet losses.


Just as they had been the past couple of days by Angels right-hander Shohei Ohtani and Mariners left-hander Wade LeBlanc, the Twins were mostly bottled up by Jack Flaherty, St. Louis’ 22-year-old pitching phenom. Flaherty allowed just two singles and a walk through the first five innings, and even picked off one of Minnesota’s rare baserunners, Ehire Adrianza, to prevent any sudden uprisings.


His mastery ran out suddenly, however, in the sixth inning. After two quick outs, Flaherty gave up a single to deep short by Brian Dozier.


, a line-drive single to right field by Eddie Rosario, and Eduardo Escobar’s run-scoring looper into center, driving Dozier home. That unexpected uprising brought Flaherty’s night to an end — but the Twins were just getting started.


After Logan Morrison led off the seventh with a double to the right-field wall, Buxton squared around to bunt against Cardinals reliever Luke Gregerson. The pitcher raced forward to field the bunt, but Buxton raced even faster to first base, and a hurried Gregerson sailed the ball down the right-field line. Morrison scored on the error, and Buxton advanced to second base, having collected his first bunt single of the season.


The Twins’ Jose Berrios had his strongest start in nearly one month, pitching 7 1/3 innings and giving up only one run on two hits Tuesday.


That wasn’t the only first. Bobby Wilson, the catcher added to the roster after Jason Castro suffered a knee injury, bunted Gregerson’s first pitch foul, then crushed a slider into the left-field seats, his first home run since Sept. 21, 2016, while he was with the Rays.


That was more than enough offense for the brilliant Berrios, who had battled inconsistency for a month. The Cardinals were flustered by his 96-mph fastballs and his occasional curveballs. Berrios caused the Cardinals to swing and miss at 14 pitches, to go down in order in five different innings, and to reach base a paltry three times in 67 1/3 innings.


Only in the third inning, when Harrison Bader singled, moved to second on a ground out, and scored on Carson Kelly’s single, did Berrios suffered even a hiccup. But that lone run seemed like plenty, considering the Twins’ recent scoring slump; before snapping their skid in the sixth, they had managed just one run in 23 innings, and three runs in 32.


Instead, the Twins added to their 2018 mastery of the Cardinals, who arrived in Minneapolis just 1 game behind Milwaukee for the NL Central lead. In three games over the past eight days, Minnesota has outscored St. Louis, 17-2.


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(c)2018 Star Tribune (Minneapolis)


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The Kansas City Star


KANSAS CITY, Mo. — If there’s one pitcher the Royals have been able to count on this season, without any hesitation that he would crumple, it was closer Kelvin Herrera.


He’d amassed an 0.60 ERA in 16 games, collected eight saves and limited batters to a .170 average in 14 2/3 innings.


But on Tuesday at Kauffman Stadium, he allowed three hits, including a two-out single to Joey Wendle that gave the Rays a ninth-inning lead in the Royals’ 6-5 loss.


Before he lofted a fly ball to right field, stranding a runner at first base and ending the game, Whit Merrifield had given the Royals hope. He’d driven in three of the Royals’ five runs, tied the score at 5 in the seventh inning and extended his hitting streak to nine games with an RBI single in the fifth.


But for just the second time this season, Herrera showed he was mortal. He allowed back-to-back singles, then retired two batters in a row.


Wendle, however, took advantage of a change-up left over the outside corner of the plate, lining a single to left field and raising Herrera’s ERA 1.15.


Such is the state of affairs: Starting pitcher Ian Kennedy had so much trouble locating his fastball in the first inning that, after he yielded three runs without recording a second out, the Royals called down to the bullpen and asked for rookie reliever Brad Keller to start warming up.


The move almost seemed prophetic. Yost indicated hours earlier, for the second time since Saturday, that Keller might find himself in the starting rotation this summer. After all, the Royals acquired Keller in the Rule 5 draft with the understanding he would eventually start for them. To do so this season, though, the Royals would need to start stretching out his appearances — he worked more than 1 2/3 innings for the first time in his career when he pitched three innings and won on Friday in Cleveland.


Had Kennedy unraveled and came anywhere near replicating his nine-run outing from Thursday, Tuesday would have provided that opportunity.


In the end, Keller never entered the game. Kennedy worked six innings, threw 101 pitches and surrendered five runs. After he issued a four-pitch walk to Carlos Gomez and received a visit from pitching coach Cal Eldred in the first inning, Kennedy struck out the ninth batter of the inning for his third out of the game. He had retired 13 of 16 when the Rays’ Mallex Smith, who eventually scored on a sacrifice bunt, doubled to lead off the sixth inning.


How the Royals tied the game: With runners in scoring position and no outs in the seventh, Abraham Almonte failed to execute a squeeze bunt and grounded out to first base. Then Ryan Goins struck out.


But Merrifield came through, poking a two-run single over the extended glove of Rays second baseman Joey Wendle.


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(c)2018 The Kansas City Star (Kansas City, Mo.)


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The San Diego Union-Tribune


SAN DIEGO — Jordan Lyles allowed nine runs over his final four appearances in the Colorado bullpen last year. He hadn’t been permitted to pitch out of the Rockies rotation since May 2016.


Perhaps, no one in Petco Park’s visiting dugout Tuesday afternoon saw this coming.


The 27-year-old Lyles retired the first 22 batters in a 4-0 win against his old team before Rockies shortstop Trevor Story broke up a bid for the first no-hitter and perfect game in Padres history in the eighth inning.


A crowd of 19,598 stood on its feet anyway when Story’s one-out single to left field fell in front of Franchy Cordero. They stood again when Padres manager Andy Green called on Kirby Yates after Pat Valaika followed with a walk.


Lyles returned the gesture with applause of his own as he walked to the dugout with the second-longest perfect game bid in franchise history. He settled for his first win of the season when Brad Hand pitched out of a bases-loaded jam in the eighth to preserve the four-run lead built on two-run homers from Eric Hosmer in the first inning and Christian Villanueva in the sixth.


The Padres are the only major league franchise without a no-hitter. They’ve been on the receiving end of 10, most recently at the hands of four Dodgers pitchers earlier this month in Monterrey.


That list of tormenters includes names like Milt Pappas and Bud Smith.


Hear from starting pitcher Jordan Lyles, who is moving to the rotation after time in the bullpen.


Lyles — who started the season in the Padres bullpen — was perhaps obscure as anyone to be chasing the 24th perfect game in baseball history.


Yet he was through seven innings on 72 pitches.


He’d thrown 57 strikes at that point, issued just one three-ball count and didn’t even throw a ball out of the strike zone in the third inning. He finished with 10 strikeouts, tying the career-high he set in 2013 while still with the Astros, the team that made him a first-rounder in 2008.


Then the fork in the road arrived.


His ERA sitting a 5.59 at the end of his third year in the majors, Lyles was traded to Colorado that December. He was in the bullpen when he finished 2016 with a 5.83 ERA and was out of the Rockies’ plans altogether when they cut Lyles, sporting a 7.75 ERA, loose last August.


Lyles quickly signed a minor league deal with the Padres and posted a 9.39 ERA in five September starts.


After returning on a major league deal this offseason, Lyles took over Bryan Mitchell’s rotation spot last week with five innings of one-run ball.


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(c)2018 The San Diego Union-Tribune


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East Bay Times


BOSTON — Stephen Piscotty crushed an 0-2 pitch from Eduardo Rodriguez over the green monster that landed on Lansdowne Street, completely out of Fenway Park. As he approached home plate after rounding the bases, he patted his chest three times and looked up toward the sky — it was as if Gretchen was watching.


Piscotty arrived to the A’s clubhouse Tuesday afternoon after spending the past four days with his family following the death of his mother, Gretchen, May 6 after a long battle with ALS. Her funeral services were held Monday in Livermore.


It was his first at-bat off the bereavement list and third home run of the season, coming in the second inning to extend Oakland’s lead to 3-0 at the time in an eventual 5-2 victory Tuesday night. Piscotty finished 1 for 4 on the night.


Piscotty returned to the A’s lineup last Tuesday, just two days after his mother’s passing, and singled in his first at-bat that night. The following day, he explained the significance behind the patting of his chest.


“The hand over my heart, that’s something my mom would do when she wasn’t able to speak,” Piscotty said. “This was just, ‘I love you and thank you.’ That’s what I did in the box and that’s kind of her way of saying. I’m going to keep that with me.”


The game began late after rain and lightning caused a one hour, 40-minute delay, but that didn’t seem to affect A’s starter Daniel Mengden.


Continuing what has been a solid start to the season, Mengden kept a dangerous Red Sox lineup in check as he allowed just two runs, one earned, on eight hits with no walks and three strikeouts over six innings of work.


Mengden improved to 3-4 on the season, lowering his ERA to 3.75. The past six starts in particular have been very impressive for Mengden, posting a 2.62 with 26 strikeouts while allowing two runs or less in five of those six.


Matt Chapman provided Mengden with some early run support in the first, doubling off the wall in right field to bring home Marcus Semien and Chad Pinder to give the A’s a 2-0 lead.


Ahead by three runs entering the bottom of the ninth, Blake Treinen allowed a run to score, but held on for his eighth save of the season.


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(c)2018 East Bay Times (Walnut Creek, Calif.)


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Los Angeles Times


MIAMI — The cavalry arrived Tuesday. And nothing changed.


Inside a distressing Los Angeles Dodgers season, it was just another day. The Dodgers played a fellow bad team. They lost again, for the fifth game in a row, this time 4-2 to the Miami Marlins, who were unimpressed by the return of Justin Turner and Logan Forsythe to the Dodgers lineup.


Onward the Dodgers slouch toward last place, performing as if hell-bent on evicting the San Diego Padres from the basement of the National League West. The Padres remained in last Tuesday, but perhaps they should not buy real estate. The Dodgers are racing to the bottom at an alarming speed. After winning 104 games in 2017, they are on pace for 99 losses in 2018.


Tuesday’s game felt like so many before. The starting pitcher was useful but far from dominant. The bullpen leaked like a sieve. The offense was absent. The manager offered no answers.


“This is testing every bit of fight you have,” manager Dave Roberts said. “This is a stretch that I’m sure a lot of these guys haven’t gone through.”


Alex Wood (0-4) pitched well enough to win, which meant, as a member of the 2018 Dodgers, he was saddled with a loss. He gave up two runs in six innings, scattering nine singles and striking out five batters. One of the runs was unearned, the product of an error by Forsythe. In the seventh inning, Adam Liberatore and J.T. Chargois teamed up to surrender two runs.


Before the game, Turner insisted he could not serve as this season’s savior. He was right. He was one for four in his first game back from a fractured wrist as the lineup failed to solve Wei-Yin Chen, a starting pitcher who carted a double-digit earned-run average to the mound. Home runs by Yasiel Puig and Cody Bellinger provided the only offense. The team was hitless in seven at-bats with runners in scoring position.


“Overall, we just haven’t gotten any momentum or started clicking,” Wood said. “Losing’s not much fun.”


It is an outcome to which this team has grown accustomed, though. The Dodgers traveled to Miami on Monday after their worst weekend of the season. They were swept by the lowly Cincinnati Reds in four games at Dodger Stadium. The Dodgers have reached the level of ineptitude where they cannot even defeat opponents actively engaged in tanking.


Perhaps, the hope went inside the clubhouse, the tide would turn with the activation of Turner and Forsythe. Turner made his 2018 debut Tuesday. Forsythe was playing for the first time since injuring a shoulder April 14.


“I think we’ve hit a little lull the past week,” Forsythe said. “We’ve discussed what we need to do to turn it around. We’ve got a long season to go. We hit a lull last year, and we still got to Game 7.”


At this point, the Dodgers will require a serious reversal to even sniff October. The team received help Tuesday when Arizona Diamondbacks star outfielder A.J. Pollock was diagnosed with a broken thumb. Arizona had lost six games in a row heading into Tuesday. Even with the Dodgers at a low ebb, the division is still up for grabs.


The Dodgers will need to win a series before they can dream about winning a division. The return of Turner allowed the players to hope. Turner tamped that down before the game.


“It’s just about understanding that one guy can’t come in and drive in 100 runs in one game and hit a bunch of homers,” Turner said. “It’s about taking good at-bats and stacking those good at-bats throughout the lineup.”


Wood gave up hits to the first two batters he faced. The fourth was outfielder Brian Anderson. Playing at shortstop, Chris Taylor scooped a grounder off Anderson’s bat and fed Forsythe for one out at second base. Forsythe bounced a throw to first base and a run scored on the error.


A one-run deficit feels like a mountain these days for the Dodgers. Over the weekend, the hitters were mystified by the Cincinnati quartet of Tyler Mahle, Matt Harvey, Homer Bailey and Luis Castillo. None of those men are expected to contend for the National League Cy Young Award. Neither is Chen, who entered Tuesday with a 10.22 ERA in three starts.


Chen did not yield a hit in the first three innings. The Dodgers could not even capitalize on Miami’s ineptitude in the third inning, when Puig raced from first to third as first baseman Justin Bour watched a bunt attempt by Wood roll in the dirt. Puig remained at third as Taylor swung through a 3-and-0 fastball and failed to do damage on another fastball. Enrique Hernandez struck out to end the inning.


“That one took the wind out of our sails, when we didn’t execute,” Roberts said.


Turner became the first Dodger to collect against Chen with a fourth-inning single. A one-out single by catcher Austin Barnes added to Chen’s stress. Chen did not need to worry. Bellinger and Forsythe flied out to end the threat.


Miami added a run in the fourth. After singles by Anderson and Bour, former Dodger Miguel Rojas hit a sacrifice fly. The act of a productive out looked foreign to the Dodgers offense.


Two more Dodgers were stranded in the fifth. Puig led off with a walk. Taylor singled. But Turner hit a soft liner into the glove of third baseman Martin Prado to extend the team’s woes with runners in scoring position.


Turner was the team’s most productive hitter in 2017. He led the offense throughout the team’s sprint to the World Series. Even so, his return to the lineup cannot heal Corey Seager’s surgically repaired left elbow or end Bellinger’s regression. He cannot fix the bullpen. He cannot show an entire roster how to execute with men on base.


The cavalry arrived for the Dodgers on Tuesday. And it might not be enough.


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(c)2018 Los Angeles Times


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PHOTO (for help with images, contact 312-222-4194):BBN-DODGERS-GIANTS


Akron Beacon Journal


DETROIT — A multi-run lead used to feel like a sure thing for the Indians. Lately, it feels more like a coin-flip.


The disastrous stretch for the Indians’ bullpen reached a new low on Tuesday night in a 9-8 loss to the Detroit Tigers at Comerica Park.


The Indians got a grand slam from Brandon Guyer in the first inning and led 8-3 in the sixth. In the past, that game situation was all but in the books as a win. Not for this bullpen, which wasn’t helped in the later innings by the Indians’ defense or offense.


After Indians starting pitcher Josh Tomlin gave up a solo home run to Nick Castellanos to lead off the bottom of the sixth and make it 8-4, thus ending his night on the mound, the bullpen took over, and a seventh-inning horror show ensued.


Dan Otero was knocked around, giving up a single to John Hicks to open the inning and then a double to James McCann, cutting the Indians’ advantage to 8-5. With one out and a runner on third, Dixon Machado grounded a ball to the left side. Shortstop Francisco Lindor fielded it and threw home instead of taking the easy out. His throw was low and got away from catcher Yan Gomes and the lead was down to 8-6.


The Indians turned to Andrew Miller, but they received anything but a vintage outing from their dynamic lefty. JaCoby Jones and Pete Kozma hit back-to-back doubles off Miller to tie it 8-8. Then Miller couldn’t find the strike zone, walking three consecutive hitters, forcing in the go-ahead run to complete the bullpen’s meltdown and give the Tigers a 9-8 lead with a five-run seventh.


The lineup was in a position to bail them out in the top of the eighth, but it was all for naught. The Indians loaded the bases with nobody out. Facing Tigers left-hander Daniel Stumpf, Guyer struck out and Jason Kipnis’ nightmarish stretch continued when he grounded into an inning-ending 4-6-3 double play.


The latest meltdown raised the Indians’ bullpen ERA to 5.79, the worst mark in the majors.


After Guyer’s grand slam in the first, Erik Gonzalez added a solo home run in the second inning off Tigers starter Francisco Liriano, putting the Indians ahead 5-1. The Tigers chipped away against Tomlin, who gave up a leadoff home run to Jones in the first but settled down until the fifth, when an RBI single by Hicks and a fielder’s choice made it 5-3. A two-run double by Rajai Davis and an RBI double by Jose Ramirez gave the Indians what used to be a comfortable 8-3 lead, but it quickly evaporated.


Still, the Indians had a chance in the top of the ninth. With two outs, Tigers reliever Shane Greene committed a throwing error that allowed Davis to reach second base. A wild pitch put Davis 90 feet away, but Michael Brantley grounded out to end the game.


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(c)2018 Akron Beacon Journal (Akron, Ohio)


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Newsday


WASHINGTON — Masahiro Tanaka’s Tuesday night ended far better than it started.


As a result he and Tyler Austin, had the Yankees in position to win their 20th game in 23 tries.


Tanaka allowed a first-inning homer, then watched the Nationals tack on two more runs in the second inning, which put the Yankees in a three-run hole against a team that had won 13 of its last 15 and had standout lefthander Gio Gonzalez and his killer curveball on the mound.


But by the time the heavy thunderstorms that created havoc up and down the East Coast hit Nationals Park, delaying the game at 9:01 p.m., just before the Nationals came to bat in the sixth, Tanaka had settled, allowing his offense to rally to tie the score at 3.


The game, officially suspended at 10:08 p.m., will be resumed at 5:05 p.m. Wednesday.


Tanaka, after allowing an RBI double to Pedro Severino with one out in the second that made it 3-0, retired his final 11 batters.


Tanaka allowed three runs and four hits over five innings. He struck out two and did not walk a batter.


The Yankees, an MLB-best 28-12 coming in and with a half-game lead over the Red Sox in the AL East, slowly grinded away at Gonzalez. The left-hander, taking the mound 4-2 with a 2.22 ERA this season, frustrated the Yankees early, stranding two runners in each of the first two innings.


But Austin, in a 0-for-23 slump coming into the night but with a single in his first at-bat of the game, crushed a two-run homer in the fourth, a 28-pitch inning for Gonzalez that cut the Yankees’ deficit to 3-2. His sacrifice fly in the fifth, a 34-pitch inning for Gonzalez that finished his night at 111 pitches, tied it at 3. Gonzalez allowed three runs (two earned) and six hits in five innings. He struck out five, four in the first two innings, and walked four.


Tanaka retired the first two Nationals he faced in the first but threw a flat 1-and-1 sinker to Anthony Rendon, who blasted it out to left for his fourth homer and a 1-0 Washington lead. It was the ninth homer allowed by Tanaka this season, the most on the staff.


The Nationals added on in the second, a 27-pitch inning. Veteran Howie Kendrick, a longtime Yankee tormentor as he came in with a career average against them of .346, led off with a double. After Mark Reynolds struck out, Andrew Stevenson grounded sharply to short, where Didi Gregorius tried for a backhand stop but couldn’t quite come up with it, the play scored an RBI single. Severino followed with his double. Tanaka then bore down, beginning his streak of 11 straight retired by striking out Gonzalez.


The Yankees got a break, and capitalized, in the fourth. Gregorius led off with a routine fly to left, where Matt Adams drifted over and settled under it. But Stevenson, the center fielder, continued to call for the ball and knocked it away at the last moment, allowing Gregorius to pull into second on the error. Austin followed with his sixth homer.


The Yankees went back to work in the fifth. Aaron Judge walked for the second time and Giancarlo Stanton collected his 1,000th hit, a blooper to right. As lightning continued to flash, Gary Sanchez worked a walk to load the bases. Gregorius grounded into a 3-2 fielder’s choice, extending his slide to 1-for-38, but Austin just missed on a grand slam, settling for a sacrifice fly to the middle of the track in center, which brought in Stanton.


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(c)2018 Newsday


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Chicago Tribune


ATLANTA — Yu Darvish didn’t get a chance to prove he can handle the fifth inning despite pitching four innings of one-run ball Tuesday night.


Darvish was pulled after only 61 pitches in his first start since May 2.


It looked gloomy for the Cubs after usually dependable reliever Carl Edwards Jr. allowed a tie-breaking home run to rookie sensation Ronald Acuna Jr. with two outs in the bottom of the eighth inning.


But the Cubs rallied for three key hits with one out in the ninth to take a 3-2 victory over the Braves and snap a two-game losing streak.


Allbert Almora Jr. and Addison Russell hit tie-breaking doubles off reliever Arodys Vizcaino, and Ben Zobrist hit a single with two out to score Russell with the go-ahead run.


Darvish, who was activated from the 10-day disabled list after experiencing flu-like symptoms, struck out five and walked two. His only blemish was a solo home run to Ender Inciarte with two outs in the fourth.


Darvish looked strong from the outset as his fastball was clocked at 96 mph, and he displayed a sharp curve and slider. After allowing the homer to Enciarte, Darvish struck out Jose Bautista for the second time — on an 82-mph slider.


But manager Joe Maddon elected to pull Darvish in favor of left-hander Mike Montgomery, who allowed a single to Johan Camargo before second baseman Javier Baez committed a throwing error on a potential double-play grounder.


Montgomery and Baez were bailed out when Camargo was thrown out at home plate trying to score on a wild pitch. The Braves unsuccessfully challenged the call at home plate, and were left helpless after Charlie Culberson was thrown out trying to advance to third on a pitch that bounced away from catcher Willson Contreras.


The Cubs took a 1-0 lead in the top of the fourth when Russell reached first on a wild pitch after striking out, and an errant throw from catcher Kurt Suzuki to first allowed Contreras to score with Darvish on deck.


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(c)2018 Chicago Tribune


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The Baltimore Sun


BALTIMORE — The Orioles’ scheduled interleague game against the Philadelphia Phillies on Tuesday night at Camden Yards was postponed by inclement weather and will be made up on July 12.


The postponement was made after the start of the game was delayed by three hours and 10 minutes.


With rain remaining the forecast Wednesday, the start time for Wednesday’s afternoon game between the Orioles and Phillies was moved up from 12:35 p.m. to 12:05 p.m. to help accommodate getting the game in before bad weather hits.


Tickets for Tuesday’s rained-out game will be automatically honored for the makeup game. No exchange is necessary, and fans should bring their original tickets to the ballpark gates for admission to the July 12 game.


Those fans who are unable to attend the makeup game can exchange their tickets toward any remaining home game this season, subject to availability.


The gametime for the make-up game will be announced at a later date.


The start of Tuesday’s game was delayed just before the scheduled first pitch, but it was clear a delay was imminent because neither starting pitcher started warming up — a practice that usually begins about 30 minutes before first pitch — and both bullpens were empty.


While dark clouds began rolling in immediately, it didn’t begin raining until about an hour into the delay, even though fans had already been instructed to seek cover because of the threat of lightning.


Right-hander Andrew Cashner, who was slated to start Tuesday’s game, is now slated to start Wednesday. Miguel Castro was slated to start that game.


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(c)2018 The Baltimore Sun


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Sun Sentinel


MIAMI — No avoiding the issue, this Marlins season is about growing pains.


With that comes a requisite helping of patience.


Manager Don Mattingly acknowledged that Tuesday prior to a series-opening 4-2 win against the struggling Dodgers (losers of five straight) when he explained how much leeway the club is willing to give struggling rookie center fielder Lewis Brinson.


“I think you do get a little rope. We knew we’re in a building situation. We need to find out what Lewis can do,” Mattingly said, adding that there was similar benefit in early-season auditions by young pitchers Trevor Richards and Dillon Peters, both now back in the minors. “You want to find out what these guys can do.


“We play to win every night, 100 percent — everybody knows that and our guys are competing. There are also things that you show patience in different areas in that you’re trying to figure things out. You’re trying to build something also.”


A good example of the effort, and an example for the team Miami is trying to develop, was exhibited by veteran third baseman Martin Prado in dashing across the diamond in the fifth inning for a diving catch of a popped up sacrifice attempt. Prado, 34, was at full gallop when Alex Wood squared to bunt.


It was a Derek Jeter-like play and it was vital in preserving a 2-0 lead that inning when the Dodgers put two runners on and chased starter Wei-Yin Chen.


Prado, who also had two hits while batting leadoff for the first time this season, and J.T. Realmuto, who had a key two-out RBI double in the seventh, showed how to play.


Meanwhile Brinson is finding his way. Slowly.


The centerpiece in the Christian Yelich trade with Milwaukee came into the game batting .172/.224/.299. He had hits in five of the previous six games, and Mattingly offered that, “I see more competitive at-bats” lately in which Brinson has worked deeper into counts and done a better job of driving pitches on the outer half of the plate to the opposite field.


Brinson did the latter in his first time up Tuesday, punching Wood’s changeup to right-center for a hit.


Next time up he struck out, fooled by a knuckle-curve down and in. He left in a double-switch in the fifth inning.


“Lewis is a little different situation,” Mattingly said. “He’s kind of holding his own, especially defensively. Offensively, we’re hoping that gets better.


“In our situation, at least right now, we’re showing patience.”


Such is life in baseball’s petri dish, also known as rebuilding.


The Marlins’ situation is in sharp contrast to the mystifying Dodgers. The defending National League champs, with a payroll of $187.3 million — about double Miami’s — arrived on a four-game losing streak at 16-24, two more wins than the Marlins.


Injuries have been a factor in Dodgers’ struggles, including ace Clayton Kershaw on the disabled list. They got a much-needed component back Tuesday when third baseman Justin Turner made his season debut in his return from a broken left wrist.


Turner came up with two runners in scoring position in the fifth, facing reliever Nick Wittgren, and hit a liner right at Prado to end the inning.


Wittgren came on in relief of Chen to get the final two outs of that inning and also work a 1-2-3 sixth.


Chen, who gave up 13 runs in his previous two starts, was much better this time in 4 1/3 scoreless innings, though he left with a 2-0 lead without sticking around long enough to qualify for the win.


But with runs tough to come by, as usual for Miami, Mattingly made the wise move to lift Chen who had thrown 83 pitches and was beginning the third turn through the L.A. order.


Chen had given up five home runs in those losses at Cincinnati and Chicago, but was more comfortable in the spacious confines of Marlins Park.


A 382-foot out to right-center by Turner would have been a two-run homer in Chen’s previous start last week at Wrigley Field.


The Dodgers cut Miami’s lead in half with a 400-foot homer by Yasiel Puig to left off Tayron Guerrero in the seventh.


The Marlins had 12 hits but none for extra bases until Yadiel Rivera hit a pinch double leading off the seventh. They had multiple runners on base in five of the first six innings, but managed to squeeze out only two runs on an error and a sacrifice fly.


They were 0-for-7 with runners in scoring position before J.T. Realmuto’s two-out double drove in Rivera for a 3-1 lead. Brian Anderson added another run-scoring hit in the inning.


Sometimes patience pays off, combined with a bit of veteran moxy.


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(c)2018 Sun Sentinel (Fort Lauderdale, Fla.)


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Chicago Tribune


PITTSBURGH — After rallying to beat the Cubs on Sunday, the White Sox were flying high.


The good vibes didn’t last. They nosedived during their first night in Pittsburgh.


“Baseball has tremendous peaks and valleys,” Sox manager Rick Renteria said before Tuesday night’s game. “We’re trying to come out of the valley and start to level off. Get to 30,000 feet and ride for a few hours.”


The smooth ride ended within minutes.


The Sox’s best pitcher, Reynaldo Lopez, got shelled in a 7-0 loss, which dropped their major-league worst record to 10-28.


Pirates second baseman Adam Frazier deposited Lopez’s second pitch into the right-field seats. Lopez then gave up a single and back-to-back doubles during a four-run inning.


Lopez recorded just six outs before getting yanked. He allowed six runs and seven hits, walking two with no strikeouts. He entered the night with a 2.44 ERA.


White Sox second baseman Yoan Moncada nearly jumped from the disabled list into the Allegheny River. He walloped a Trevor Williams pitch far enough to smack into a sign past the right-field seats that says PIRATES CHARITIES. A statistician in the press box noted that few balls reach that sign.


The sign, it should be mentioned, is in foul territory. So Moncada’s glorious shot was only good for some ooohs and ahhhs. He struck out on an offspeed pitch on the outside corner and went 1-for-4 on the night with a single to right-center.


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