MLB

MLB trade deadline: Yankees get Rizzo from Cubs, Schwarber goes to Red Sox

By Sports Desk July 29, 2021

With the MLB trade deadline still a day away, the big dominoes started falling on Thursday as rumours swirled around numerous star players. 

While multiple reports said Washington Nationals ace Max Scherzer and All-Star shortstop Trea Turner were on the verge of being dealt to the Los Angeles Dodgers, the New York Yankees finalised another addition to their lineup. 

A day after acquiring slugger Joey Gallo from the Texas Rangers, New York got Anthony Rizzo from the Chicago Cubs for outfielder Kevin Alcantara and pitcher Alexandro Vizcaino, adding a power-hitting first baseman renowned for his clubhouse presence. 

Though he was drafted by the Boston Red Sox and made his MLB debut with the San Diego Padres, Rizzo had been a beloved Cubs fixture for years, making three All-Star teams and helping Chicago to a long-awaited World Series title in 2016. 

Rizzo did not play in the Cubs' 7-4 loss to the Cincinnati Reds earlier Thursday, prompting fans at Wrigley Field to chant "We want Rizzo!" during the game. 

The 31-year-old is hitting .248 with 14 home runs, 40 RBIs and a .792 OPS and will become the Yankees' primary first baseman. 

Red Sox swoop for Schwarber

Rizzo's former Cubs team-mate Kyle Schwarber also was on the move Thursday as the Nationals traded him to the Boston Red Sox for minor league pitcher Aldo Ramirez.

Schwarber is on the injured list with a hamstring strain but is expected back soon.

The All-Star is hitting .253 with 25 home runs and 53 RBIs, with 16 of those homers coming in an 18-game stretch in June. 

He figures to see time as an outfielder and designated hitter for the Red Sox. 

Mariners get Castillo as relievers on the move

In other moves Thursday, the Seattle Mariners acquired closer Diego Castillo from the Tampa Bay Rays for pitcher JT Chargois and third baseman Austin Shenton. 

The San Diego Padres shored up their bullpen in getting veteran reliever Daniel Hudson from the Nationals for minor league pitcher Mason Thompson and infielder Jordy Barley. 

The Chicago White Sox made a pair of moves, picking up infielder Cesar Hernandez from the Cleveland Indians for left-hander Konnor Pilkington and getting relief pitcher Ryan Tepera from the Cubs for pitching prospect Bailey Horn. 

Lefty reliever Brad Hand moved from Washington to the Toronto Blue Jays for catcher Riley Adams, while the Dodgers picked up left-hander Danny Duffy from the Kansas City Royals for a player to be named. 

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  • 'It's an incredible honour': Judge ties Maris' Yankees and AL single-season record with 61st HR 'It's an incredible honour': Judge ties Maris' Yankees and AL single-season record with 61st HR

    New York Yankees outfielder Aaron Judge made baseball history after blasting his 61st home run of the season to equal Roger Maris' franchise and American League (AL) single-season record.

    Judge, who had gone homerless in seven games, crushed a two-run homer in the seventh inning in Wednesday's game against the Toronto Blue Jays.

    Judge's record-tying 61st home run comes with another seven games remaining in the regular season. Maris' mark dates back to 1961, edging Babe Ruth's previous record of 60 in 1927.

    "It's an incredible honour, getting a chance to be associated with one of the Yankee greats, one of baseball's greats, words can't describe it," Judge said.

    "That's one thing so special about the Yankees organisation, is all the guys that came before us and kind of paved the way and played the game the right way, did things the right way, did a lot of great things in this game and getting a chance to be mentioned with those guys now is, I can't even describe it, it's an incredible honor that's for sure."

    The 30-year-old had gone 31 consecutive homerless plate appearances coming into Wednesday's game with some speculation he may be rested with the Yankees clinching the AL East on Tuesday.

    Only three players have scored more homers in a single season for any franchise than Judge; Barry Bonds (73 in 2001), Mark McGwire (70 in 1999 and 65 in 1999) and Sammy Sosa (66 in 1998, 64 in 2001, 63 in 1999). Those three players all achieved the feat during the steroid era.

    "I think it puts it a notch above," Boone said about Judge last week. "I got to believe it's right there with some of the best very short list of all-time seasons. I go back to the context of the season, and the more I look at it and dive into it, it's got to be an all-time great season."

  • Dodgers post 107th regular season MLB win to smash franchise record Dodgers post 107th regular season MLB win to smash franchise record

    The Los Angeles Dodgers have set a new franchise record for wins in a single season after notching their 107th victory of the MLB campaign against the San Diego Padres.

    The California outfit posted a 1-0 victory over their neighbours at Petco Park on Wednesday to shatter their previous best of 106, set last year as they came home fifth in the National League (NL) West division.

    This time around, the Dodgers sit top of the pile, with only last year's World Series runners-up, the Houston Astros, cracking the triple-digit mark for wins this term. The Dodgers can still better their new record, with seven regular season games to come.

    Ex-NL MVP Freddie Freeman made the clutch play in the 10th inning for a career-high 192 hits this season to secure the win, delighting manager Dave Roberts.

    "To know that we’ve made our mark on Dodgers history is pretty remarkable," he said. "A lot of people have their hands on this, not just this year but, kind of building where we’re at right now. It’s something to be proud of."

    With the postseason looming, the Dodgers will be looking to ensure momentum ahead of a tilt for a second World Series title in three years.

  • Judge should be true single-season home run champion if he reaches 62, says Maris Jr Judge should be true single-season home run champion if he reaches 62, says Maris Jr

    New York Yankees history-maker Aaron Judge should be revered as the single-season home run champion if he can crush a 62nd blast this season, according to Roger Maris Jr.

    Judge matched Maris Sr's Yankees and American League single-season record of 61 home runs from 1961 with a seventh-inning two-run shot in Wednesday's 8-3 win over the Toronto Blue Jays, ending a run of seven games without a homer.

    That moved Judge beyond Yankees great Babe Ruth (60 in 1927), with only three players having hit more homers in one season: Barry Bonds (73 in 2001), Mark McGwire (70 in 1998 and 65 in 1999) and Sammy Sosa (66 in 1998, 64 in 2001, 63 in 1999).

    All three of those players set their marks during baseball's so-called 'steroid era', making Judge's achievement appear all the more remarkable. Bonds and Sosa have denied knowingly using steroids.

    Maris Jr, who sat in the crowd next to Judge's mother Patty for Wednesday's historic moment, said the Yankees outfielder's feat stood out.

    "He's clean. He's a Yankee," Maris Jr told reporters. "He plays the game the right way. And he gives people a chance to look at somebody who should be revered."

    The Yankees have seven regular-season games remaining, so Judge is unlikely to get near Bonds' all-time record of 73 despite being on track for that at one point earlier this season.

    Instead, Judge will next set his sights when they resume at Yankee Stadium against the Baltimore Orioles on Friday on breaking Maris Sr's mark, which Maris Jr said would set him apart.

    "He should be revered for being the actual single-season home run champ," Maris Jr said. "That's really who he is, if he hits 62."

    Yankees manager Aaron Boone praised Judge for being a great teammate and making the whole group feel part of his achievement.

    "He's as beloved as they come," Boone said. "Everyone is just so excited for him but also, I think it's partly because of how Aaron is, everyone feels a part of it.

    "That's who he is as a teammate. That's part of the reason guys are so excited. That's a tribute to him."

    Yankees pitcher Gerrit Cole, who also achieved franchise history on Wednesday by tying Ron Guidry's record of 248 strikeouts in a single season, was glowing towards Judge.

    "I think it's more special because of what Aaron did tonight, to be honest," Cole said. "It's obviously a really special number. Guidry was so good for us, so magical and his record held for so long."

    On Judge's 61st home run, Cole added: "It kind of felt like we were the only ones there. It was just a really special moment of togetherness, and we're all so proud of him and know how hard he works.

    "I know he wants to keep it low-key, but boy does he deserve it."

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