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Closer Stock Watch
Aroldis 320 ((Getty Images))
Aroldis Chapman, Koji Uehara, Jonathan Papelbon are among the major closers who could be moved at the trade deadline. Chris Towers takes a closer look. Full Story
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Player News
Pirates 2B Neil Walker posts another four-hit game on Thursday
by Jason Lempert | Staff Writer
(5:53 pm ET) Pirates second baseman Neil Walker went 4 for 5 with a double and three RBI in the 8-4 win over the Tigers on Thursday. Walker now has back-to-back four-hit games. He is 14-for-26 over his current six-game hitting streak. 

In 10 games since returning from a stomach illness, Walker is hitting .444 with two home runs and seven RBI. 


Padres RP Dale Thayer may make rehab appearance this weekend
by Sean d'Oliveira | CBSSports.com
(5:52 pm ET) While Padres pitcher Dale Thayer is eligible to come off the disabled list Thursday, he may need to make a rehab appearance in the minor leagues this weekend, reports MLB.com.

Thayer has been sidelined since June 16 with a strained right shoulder.


Tigers' Ian Kinsler busts out of slump with three-hit game Thursday
by Jason Lempert | Staff Writer
(5:49 pm ET) Tigers second baseman Ian Kinsler went 3 for 5 with a double, an RBI and a run scored in the 8-4 loss to the Pirates on Thursday. This was Kinsler's first three-hit game since June 16, and he is batting .239 with one home run and six RBI over his last 10 games. 

Tigers RF J.D. Martinez goes deep again on Thursday
by Jason Lempert | Staff Writer
(5:44 pm ET) Tigers right fielder J.D. Martinez slugged a three-run home run on Thursday, but it wasn't enough to avoid the 8-4 loss to the Pirates. Martinez's eighth-inning blast, his 21st of the season, cut the Pirates' lead to 4-3. But Pittsburgh would put up a four-spot in the ninth inning, keeping the Tigers at bay.

Martinez now has eight home runs in his last nine games, and he is batting .359 with 16 RBI over that stretch. 


Pirates C Francisco Cervelli blasts solo home run on Thursday
by Jason Lempert | Staff Writer
(5:41 pm ET) Pirates catcher Francisco Cervelli got the scoring started on Thursday, as he launched a solo home run in the top of the fourth inning to give his club the early 1-0 lead. Cervelli also singled and scored later in the game, as the Pirates defeated the Tigers 8-4.

The home run was Cervelli's fourth of the season, and he now has 10 hits in 40 at-bats over his last 10 games. 


Pirates' Mark Melancon needs one out to get 25th save Thursday
by Jason Lempert | Staff Writer
(5:39 pm ET) Pirates closer Mark Melancon was called upon to get one out in the ninth inning on Thursday, and Melancon obliged accordingly to pick up his 25th save of the season. The Pirates entered the bottom of the ninth against the Tigers with an 8-3 lead. 

But, Vance Worley gave up a run on three hits while recording two outs. So, with the possible tying run in the on-deck circle, Melancon was summoned from the bullpen, and was able to get Victor Martinez to ground-out, securing the 8-4 Pirates win.

Melancon is now working on a 23-game scoreless streak, as his ERA now sits at 1.66 on the year.


Dodgers OF Carl Crawford to miss rehab game with flu
by Ruben Palacios | Staff Writer
(5:38 pm ET) Dodgers outfielder Carl Crawford will not play on Thursday for Class A Rancho Cucamonga because he is suffering from flu like symptoms, per the team's media relations department.

Crawford left Wednesday's game for Rancho Cucamonga because he was hit by a pitch, but was able to leave the field under his own power.

Crawford is on the disabled list with a right oblique injury.


Tigers SP Kyle Ryan walks five batters in loss on Thursday
by Jason Lempert | Staff Writer
(5:33 pm ET) Making his fourth start of the season, Tigers left-hander Kyle Ryan lasted four-plus innings in an 8-4 loss to the Pirates on Thursday. Ryan allowed two runs on three hits, but he walked a season-high five batters on the afternoon, while recording four strikeouts. 

Ryan (1-2) gave up a solo home run to Francisco Cervelli in the fourth inning to kick off the scoring. He started the fifth inning by wallking the first two batters to face him. He was then lifted for a reliever, but one of the runs came around to score, charging Ryan with his second run of the game.

Ryan last pitched two-thirds on an inning in relief on June 24. He was supposed to start last Saturday, but the game was postponed due to rain, and he did not make another appearance until Thursday's start. 


Orioles sign Chris Perez to minor-league deal
by Ruben Palacios | Staff Writer
(5:31 pm ET) The Orioles signed relief pitcher Chris Perez to a Triple-A deal on Thursday, per masnsports.com.

Perez will have to serve a 50-game suspension for his second drug abuse offense before he can play a game in the minors. 

"That doesn't affect us right now, obviously for 50 games. There are games played after August," Orioles manager Buck Showalter said.

"We all make some changes in our lives and get better."

Perez was an All-Star with the Indians in 2011 and 2012 and he recorded 75 total saves over that span.


Pirates' Francisco Liriano blanks Tigers for seven innings Thursday
by Jason Lempert | Staff Writer
(5:26 pm ET) Pirates left-hander Francisco Liriano posted another gem, this time at the expense of the Tigers in the Pirates' 8-4 win on Thursday. Liriano held the Tigers scoreless over seven innings, allowing five hits and three walks while recording five strikeouts. 

Liriano (5-6) dropped his ERA under 3.00 with the terrific effort on Thursday. The veteran left-hander has allowed three runs or less in seven of his last eight starts.


 
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