Phillies

MLB Wrap: Soriano's pair of HRs give Yanks win

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MLB Wrap: Soriano's pair of HRs give Yanks win

TORONTO -- Alfonso Soriano hit two home runs, Andy Pettitte pitched seven shutout innings, and the New York Yankees beat the Toronto Blue Jays 7-1 on Tuesday night after losing Robinson Cano in the first inning.

Alex Rodriguez and Mark Reynolds also homered for the Yankees, who won for the 13th time in 15 meetings with Toronto this season.

Rodriguez hit a two-out solo shot to center off Esmil Rogers in the seventh, his 651st career home run and second in two games. Rodriguez, who has four home runs this season, is nine away from tying Willie Mays for fourth on the career list. Reaching the milestone would secure a $6 million bonus for the third baseman.

Soriano's homers, both of which were hit on the first pitch, were the 399th and 400th of his career. They were his 27th and 28th this season and 10th and 11th since being traded back to New York from the Chicago Cubs on July 26.

Cano sustained a bruised left hand after being struck by a pitch from left-hander J.A. Happ in the first inning. Cano stayed in the game to run the bases but was replaced by Eduardo Nunez in the bottom half (see full recap).

Nationals edge Marlins
WASHINGTON -- Ross Ohlendorf pitched neatly into the sixth inning, Ian Desmond had three hits and the Washington Nationals beat the Miami Marlins 2-1 on Tuesday night.

Ohlendorf (3-0) pitched five innings of two-hit ball before Christian Yelich led off the sixth with his second homer, ending the starter's outing. It was Ohlendorf's second start since he was sidelined by right shoulder inflammation.

Tanner Roark, Drew Storen and Tyler Clippard each pitched a hitless inning before Rafael Soriano finished the four-hitter for his 34th save (see full recap).

Aramis Ramirez homers to hold off Bucs
PITTSBURGH -- Aramis Ramirez had three hits, including his 350th career home run, and drove in four runs as the Milwaukee Brewers edged the Pittsburgh Pirates 7-6 on Tuesday night.

The 16-year veteran third baseman helped stake the Brewers to a 5-0 in the fifth inning, but the Pirates rallied to tie it in the sixth. But Milwaukee pulled out the win when rookie pinch-hitter Caleb Gindl hit a tiebreaking sacrifice fly in the eighth inning.

With the game tied 6-6, Rafael Betancourt hit a one-out double off Bryan Morris (5-7) and took third on Scooter Gennett's single. Gindl then lifted a fly to right that scored Betancourt and gave the Brewers their third victory in four games.

Pittsburgh, which entered the day one-half game behind St. Louis in the NL Central, lost its third in a row (see full recap).

Gabe Kapler names Jim Gott Phillies' bullpen coach

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Gabe Kapler names Jim Gott Phillies' bullpen coach

Gabe Kapler on Friday added to his coaching staff by naming Jim Gott the Phillies' bullpen coach.

Gott was the minor-league pitching coordinator for the Angels the last five seasons and the pitching coach for the Arizona League Angels the three years prior to that role.

He played for the Blue Jays, Giants, Pirates and Dodgers over 14 major-league seasons as a starter and reliever. Gott, now 58 years old, compiled a 3.87 ERA while making 96 starts and converting 91 saves.

Kapler and the Phillies still need to name a pitching coach and first-base coach. Last week, they named Dusty Wathan third-base coach and hired John Mallee as hitting coach, while retaining Rick Kranitz, who was the assistant pitching coach last season (see story). He could fill the main pitching coach vacancy, although his role is currently to be determined.

In 2017, Bob McClure served the Phillies as pitching coach and Mickey Morandini was first-base coach.

MLB Notes: Astros' Jose Altuve, Marlins' Giancarlo Stanton claim MVP awards

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MLB Notes: Astros' Jose Altuve, Marlins' Giancarlo Stanton claim MVP awards

Houston Astros dynamo Jose Altuve has won the American League MVP award, towering over New York Yankees slugger Aaron Judge by a wide margin.

The 5-foot-6 Altuve drew 27 of the 30 first-place votes in balloting by members of the Baseball Writers' Association of America.

Altuve batted a major league-best .346. He hit 24 home runs with 81 RBIs, scored 112 times, stole 32 bases and showed a sharp glove at second base.

The 6-foot-7 Judge won the AL Rookie of the Year award Monday. He set a rookie record with 52 home runs.

Jose Ramirez of the Cleveland Indians finished third. The award was announced Thursday.

Altuve helped lead the Astros to their first World Series championship. Voting for these honors was completed before the postseason began.

Miami Marlins slugger Giancarlo Stanton won the NL MVP award, barely edging Joey Votto of the Cincinnati Reds.

In the closest MVP vote since 1979, Stanton became only the sixth player to win from a losing team. Stanton led the big leagues with 59 home runs and 132 RBIs (see full story).

MLB: Manfred says pace changes will happen with or without union
Major League Baseball will change rules to speed games next year with or without an agreement with the players' association.

Management proposed last offseason to institute a 20-second pitch clock, allow one trip to the mound by a catcher per pitcher each inning and raise the bottom of the strike zone from just beneath the kneecap to its pre-1996 level at the top of the kneecap. The union didn't agree, and clubs have the right to impose those changes unilaterally for 2018.

Players and MLB have held initial bargaining since summer, and MLB chief legal officer Dan Halem said this week he would like an agreement by mid-January.

"My preferred path is a negotiated agreement with the players, but if we can't get an agreement we are going to have rule changes in 2018 one way or the other," baseball Commissioner Rob Manfred said Thursday after a quarterly owners' meeting.

Nine-inning games averaged a record 3 hours, 5 minutes during the regular season and 3:29 during the postseason.

There are ongoing talks for a new posting system with Japan to replace the deal that expired Nov. 1, one that would allow star Japanese pitcher/outfielder Shohei Otani to leave the Pacific League's Nippon Ham Fighters to sign with a big league team (see full story).

Mariners: Team makes trade, raises available money for Japan's Otani​
The Seattle Mariners have gained more flexibility if they want to try to sign star Japanese pitcher/outfielder Shohei Otani.

They acquired an additional $500,000 for their international signing bonus pool from the Chicago White Sox in a trade for Brazilian right-hander Thyago Vieira.

Otani, a 23-year-old right-hander, would be limited to a minor league contract with a signing bonus under Major League Baseball's new collective bargaining agreement. The trade announced Thursday increases the Mariners' available money for a signing bonus to $1,557,500. Seattle has spent $3,942,500 on bonuses in the signing year that started July 2 from a pool that rose to $5.5 million with the trade.

The 24-year-old Vieira made his major league debut with a scoreless inning against Baltimore on Aug. 14, his only big league appearance. He was 2-3 with two saves and a 3.72 ERA in 29 games this year for Double-A Arkansas and 0-1 with two saves and a 4.58 ERA in 12 games for Triple-A Tacoma.

Chicago is restricted to a maximum $300,000 signing bonus because it exceeded its pool in a previous year under the old labor contract.