MLB News & Moments You Should Know – April 20

Mason Jars Cubs, And Big Tall Boys Battle In The Bronx

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


Today’s Headlines


It’s Miller Time

Oakland A’s fans have precious little to cheer for this season. We’re less than 20 games into the season and uh, well:

It’s honestly impressive but in a bad way. And lest you think I’m trying to dump on the A’s, I’ve said repeatedly it’s absolutely shameful what the ownership of that team has done to such a storied franchise with such dedicated fans. So dedicated, in fact, that they’re planning a reverse boycott on June 13th:

But today, there was a bright spot for the Oakland faithful, as they got to see their #3 prospect Mason Miller make his MLB debut on the mound. His final line was 4.1 IP, 4 H, 2 ER, 1 BB, 5 K which doesn’t jump off the page, but he also did stuff like this:


I would reckon I can speak for pretty much all of us when I say “That’s cool, I wanna see more of that.” The team has entered into a binding agreement to purchase a site in Las Vegas, though, so who knows where the said more of that will happen.


Seattle Has The Best Home Run Object In The League

The MLB has jackets, chains, laundry carts, and hats of various sizes/shapes/armoured-ness, but I think the M’s may have simply leapfrogged them all with this one:

Is this more of a “moment” than a “headline”? Maybe, but on the other hand, look at Julio Rodríguez holding a trident and tell me with a straight face that he doesn’t deserve to be above the fold. Just, you know, don’t go all Brick Tamland with it or anything.


History Isn’t Always Sterling

I’m pretty sure the Reds were hoping they got to score those eight runs, but it was the Rays who finished the day with an 8-0 win for their MLB-best 16th win. This is the second time I’ve gotten to report on some Reds, uh, history, they may not want to put a plaque for in their museum, so, sorry for that Cincinnati. At least they locked up Hunter Greene, so that’s fun!


Mad Mad Max

The inspection you can see in that clip was Max Scherzer’s third of the game and umpire Dan Bellino said that (I swear this is a direct quote) “the level of stickiness on his hand was much worse than it was even in the initial inspection that had taken place two innings prior,” at which point Phil Cuzzi tossed him from the game. He’s potentially staring down a 10-game suspension as a result.

I have to admit that “I’d have to be an absolute idiot to try to do anything when I’m coming back out for the fourth” does seem like a reasonable alibi. It would put him up there with Michael Pineda when it comes to “My Guy, what were you thinking?!” foreign substance violations. This marks the second time in as many weeks that there’s been a whole kerfuffle around pitcher stickiness that was blamed on rosin, which is actually covered under the foreign substance rule:

“No player shall intentionally discolor or damage the ball by rubbing it with soil, rosin, paraffin, licorice, sand-paper, emery-paper or other foreign substance.”

At the same time, though, there’s a bag of the stuff provided on the mound in every professional ballpark, along with more in the dugout and clubhouse. It seems obvious at this point that the MLB was right to crack down on the spin-rate-enhancing sticky stuff that made such big waves only a couple of years ago, but the subjective standard (combined with the rumors that the league wants to redouble their enforcement efforts on that front) extending to an “accepted” substance seems like a bad grey area to be leaping into with both feet. I dunno, maybe I’m being too credulous and pitchers really are still neck-deep in illegal glue-hiding operations.

If only there was a solution to the question of ball tackiness that was already in use in another high-level professional baseball league. Oh well.


Best Moments From Yesterday


LuGar Throws For The Cycle

In the first inning, no less! And now you may be asking “Throws for the cycle?!” and I’ll let the Astros tweet answer that for you:

I’m still not entirely sure how on board I am with the whole “striking out on a clock violation without the clock reading 0:00” thing, and the fact that Luis Garcia can no longer Rock The Baby, but if the rule’s sun is gonna shine, I guess we may as well make weird new fun moment hay.


The Yankees Game Was Pretty Cool

Do I say this just because I happened to be at it? Yes. But also whenever we get to watch Shohei Ohtani, Mike Trout, and Aaron Judge go out there and play on the same field, that’s a pretty cool thing. It’s pretty incredible to see how many people are at these games almost entirely just for Shohei at this point. I’ve definitely never seen so many Angels jerseys around the city.

The Yankees also gave props to one of the most underappreciated arms I can think of from recent years:

Hiroki Kuroda was a prime case of the true value of Pitcher Wins, as he finished his MLB career with a 79-79 record, but pitched 1319 innings with a 3.45 ERA. All of that with a sub-20% K-rate, gotta love a crafty righty.

But as I opened with, we’re really here to watch Shohei and Judge, and they didn’t waste much time kicking off the fireworks:

How rare is a play like that on a ball like that?

That works out to 0.064% of all batted balls with those numbers turning into outs. But Judge wasn’t gonna let it be at that, he had to Sho us how it’s done in the Boogie Down:

…and even then he wasn’t finished with the glove:

He’s simply too good at defense, it continues to boggle the mind. But then again, Judge also doesn’t own a 2.84 ERA over 370.2 IP since 2018 so it’s not Shohei Ohtani’s exactly a slouch, either. It’s a pretty great time to be a baseball fan right now, even if we can get crabby from time to time.


The Yankees ended the night by remaining the only team not to lose a series yet and checked off another box at the same time.

In other notes, the game took 3:20 to play, which seemed incredibly long, and was also somehow the latest game of the entire Wednesday slate. I’m not used to getting home and having no West Coast Baseball to watch. Weird.

Hopefully Nasty Nestor Cortes (who is an Ace, ok Nick?!) can continue his winning ways tomorrow.


It Pays To Be A Little Stitious

The Giants and Marlins went into the 11th inning all tied up at 1-1, but some good old-fashioned sartorial decision-making from the Giants’ bench helped them put up another four runs to seal a 5-2 victory:

As somebody who has tried to wear a rally cap several times in my life, I’m incredibly impressed that Logan Webb and Ross Stripling managed to get them onto their heads as if they weren’t inside-out. I’ve never managed that one.



Must be some kind of California thing.




Trevor Rogers left Wednesday’s game with “forearm tightness” and will likely end up on the IL. Further testing will be required to determine the full extent and severity.

Carlos Carrasco has been officially diagnosed with a bone spur in his right elbow, and the current plan is rest and rehab rather than any surgical intervention.

Starling Marte left Wednesday’s game with “neck stiffness.” He’s DTD as of this article being written on Wednesday night.

Alex Wood was placed on the 15-day IL with a left hamstring strain.

Trevor May is also going on the 15-day IL due to anxiety-related issues.

In better news, Corbin Burnes is pencilled in as a starter for the Brewers series this weekend, he is currently lined up for Sunday.


Articles You Should Read


5 Reasons Playing Fantasy Baseball Makes for Better Fans – Renee Dechert

Salt Lake City’s Bid for a Major League Expansion Team Is for Real – Jay Jaffe, FanGraphs


Fantasy Baseball Coverage


Starting Pitcher Roundup

Hitter Performances

Reliever Ranks (Closers) (Holds)

Starting Pitcher Streamers


Featured image by Justin Paradis (@JustParaDesigns on Twitter)

Asher Dratel

Asher hails from Brooklyn, wears a 2008 Joba Chamberlain jersey to every Yankees game he attends, and pronounces BABIP funny. Appreciator of Beefy Lad dingers and beers. @asherd.bsky.social on Bluesky.

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