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Baseball has a tendency to be weird. The Marlins have a tendency to be extremely weird, even by baseball standards. Well, Miami is outdoing itself this week, as it’s having one of the strangest seven-day stretches I can remember. It all started on Monday, when they traveled out to Los Angeles to play the Dodgers. Not only was this a matchup of a 6-11 team against a 12-7 squad, but it was also Don Mattingly’s first trip back to Los Angeles. The Marlins came through against the better opponent, though, and pulled off the improbable four-game sweep.
Mattingly and the Marlins weren’t celebrating for long, however, as the big news of the week dropped immediately following the series finale. As we all know by now, Dee Gordon was shockingly suspended for 80 games following a positive PED test. Although it's far from the first suspension of this kind -- it was the third of this year -- this one brought out the crazy in everyone. From the sheer shock by Gordon that he'd been busted, to those blaming new hitting coach Barry Bonds, to those calling for the MLB Players Union to stop representing the players’ best interest, there has been no shortage of takes.
Then came last night, fresh off the heels of the Gordon suspension. No one would’ve blamed the Marlins for coming out flat for their series opener in Milwaukee, as it was undoubtedly a very long day for the team. Instead, they flirted with history. Adam Conley, who had never thrown more than seven innings in a start, found himself with a no-hitter through seven. After getting two outs in the eighth, Conley was taken out of the game with the no-hitter still in tact and Jose Urena came in. Urena would finish the eighth, but he lost the no-hit bid on a bloop over the second baseman’s glove. Of course, if Gordon had been playing, he likely would’ve saved the bid. But wait, there's more! They almost blew the game entirely before A.J. Ramos came through with a big strikeout in a bases loaded situation. Nothing normal can ever happen with the Marlins.
- Speaking of that Gordon suspension, there is at least a chance that this could turn into something much bigger.
- The Red Sox-Yankees rivalry is in a bit of a rut right now, but at some point soon it is very likely to pick back up.
- Speaking of the Yankees, they need some help in their rotation. In a very un-Yankees way, their best hope isn’t looking outside of the organization, but hoping for bouncebacks from those within.
- Although it goes against all sabermetric belief, should the Royals build their lineups around hot streaks?
- The Cardinals may have one of the best young arms in the game. It's about time they catch a break.
- Once upon a time, Jon Gray was one of baseball’s best pitching prospects. Although he’s struggled mightily in his time in the majors, there’s still reason for optimism.
- The Cubs have a tradition of allowing celebrities to sing "Take Me Out to the Ball Game" every home game. It's great, because it gives us moments like this.
- Did you bet on Fredi Gonzalez being the first manager to lose his job? If so, you may have won some money. Also, you may be gambling too much, but who am I to judge?
- Yoenis Cespedes has been incredible at the plate in 2016, but he hasn’t all of a sudden transformed into a new hitter.
- The Blue Jays have been less incredible than many expected at the plate. They’re going to get better, though. Right?
- You didn’t know that you desperately wanted an oral history of a trade for a backup catcher, but you need this in your life.
- The Orioles expected a big power infusion from Pedro Alvarez this season. Instead, they’ve gotten a black hole. Fortunately, the calendar hasn’t even turned to May yet.