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Greenberg gets minor league deal from Orioles

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Greenberg gets minor league deal from Orioles

Adam Greenberg is getting a chance to resume his baseball career with the Baltimore Orioles.

The 31-year-old returned to the major leagues for one at-bat in October, more than seven years after he was beaned in his debut. He agreed to a minor league contract with the Orioles and will have a chance to earn a job at their Triple-A farm team in Norfolk, Va.

``To get the opportunity with the Orioles means everything to me,'' he said Saturday.

He had contacted Baltimore manager Buck Showalter at the winter meetings this month in Nashville, Tenn.

``I just walked up to him, introduced myself,'' Greenberg said. ``I've always kind of looked at Buck and said that would be the guy that I would love to play, that type of hard-nose mentality.''

Showalter put him in touch with Orioles special assistant Brady Anderson and general manager Dan Duquette.

``I'm going to spring (training) with the opportunity to make the Triple-A squad,'' he said. ``Being 31, they said I'm not going to be going to Double-A and taking away a prospect's spot. It's Triple-A, big leagues - obviously I'm not going to make the big league team out of camp - it's Triple-A, big leagues or nothing, and that's great.''

Selected by the Chicago Cubs in the ninth round of the 2002 amateur draft, Greenberg made his big league debut as a pinch hitter on July 9, 2005, and was hit on the back of his head with the first pitch from the Marlins' Valerio de los Santos. Greenberg sustained a concussion and was removed for a pinch runner.

Released by the Cubs in June 2006, he had minor league stints with the Los Angeles Dodgers and Kansas City Royals, the speedy outfielder signed a minor league deal with the Cincinnati Reds and was cut at the end of spring training, hampered by a rotator cuff injury. He spent 2009, `10 and `11 with the Bridgeport Bluefish of the independent Atlantic League.

After a petition on Change.org urged a big league team to give him another chance, the Marlins signed him and sent him up as a pinch hitter on Oct. 2 against New York Mets knuckleballer R.A. Dickey. Greenberg struck out on three pitches against the eventual NL Cy Young Award winner.

``The last few years have been very, very difficult and challenging, but I got myself physically where I need to be and more important than anything, mentally I'm at a point in my career where I'm able to commit 110 percent back to the game,'' he said.

His agreement was reported by several media outlets on Thursday.

NOTES: Baltimore assigned OF Steve Pearce outright to Norfolk on Friday.

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Astros and Athletics clear benches, have a very non-socially distant brawl

Astros and Athletics clear benches, have a very non-socially distant brawl

Even amid the coronavirus pandemic, the normalities of a baseball season will continue on. That means players and managers getting heated, arguments with umpires and benches clearing. But because of the risk the virus poses, MLB has asked for those moments to remain socially distant.

The Houston Astros and Oakland Athletics did not follow that rule on Sunday.

After Athletics outfielder Ramon Laureano was hit by a pitch, he appeared to be exchanging words with a Houston bench coach. With no fans, the words can be heard loud and clear by everybody. That led to both benches clearing and not even six inches of separation between players. 

It's understandable for players to get angry and caught up in the moment, but this move by both teams is rather unacceptable given the current climate of the country and the sport. Though players are being tested constantly, this close contact between teams is unnecessary and only creates a larger risk for all involved.

The non-socially distant brawl comes at a bad time for baseball, as the league is dealing with numerous coronavirus-related issues. The St. Louis Cardinals have had at least 15 games postponed due to an outbreak within the organization, and that comes just after the Miami Marlins dealt with the same problem as well. Cleveland Indians pitcher Zach Plesac was reportedly sent home on Sunday after breaking protocol and going out with friends in Chicago on Saturday night.

Despite tightening up regulations for players, MLB still faces daily challenges while trying to operate a season during a global pandemic. Moments like the brawl between the Athletics and Astros don't help.

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Report: Indians send pitcher Zach Plesac home after he went out in Chicago Saturday night

Report: Indians send pitcher Zach Plesac home after he went out in Chicago Saturday night

The Cleveland Indians have sent pitcher Zach Plesac back to Cleveland after the pitcher reportedly went out with friends in Chicago on Saturday night, The Athletic's Ken Rosenthal and Zack Meisel reported.

According to the story in The Athletic, Plesac went out with friends in the city following the team's game against the Chicago White Sox in which he threw six scoreless innings. After his teammates and staff learned where he was, they reportedly became upset and uncomfortable with the behavior and the Indians quickly sent him home to isolate and quarantine. 

Plesac will reportedly be quarantined for 72 hours and tested daily. His next scheduled start is Saturday, August 15, against the Detroit Tigers.

The decision by Plesac comes at a surprising time as MLB has tightened protocols amid COVID-19 outbreaks within multiple organizations. The pitcher's time in Chicago is a violation of the rules set by the team and the league. 

The Miami Marlins had double-digit positive cases just a few games into the season and the St. Louis Cardinals are now facing an outbreak that has led to the postponement of at least 15 of their scheduled contests. 

Plesac, a nephew of former MLB pitcher Dan Plesac, is currently 1-1 on the season with a 1.29 ERA in three starts. The Indians are scheduled to play the White Sox on Sunday night and then the Chicago Cubs beginning on Tuesday. As of now, it is unknown if Plesac's potential contact with any players following Saturday night will impact future games.

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