Despite giving up one run on two hits and a walk with two strikeouts in the ninth inning, Neil Ramirez notched his second save of the season as the Cubs beat the Phillies 2-1 on Friday.
Ramirez, who was given the save opportunity for the second time in a row, didn't look good in this appearance as he almost let the Phillies get the better of him in the end. How much of an impact that will have on the team's decision to keep giving him save chances is up in the air, but it seems to be very telling that Hector Rondon, who hasn't pitched since his June 6 meltdown wasn't afforded the opportunity. Manager Rick Renteria hasn't said anything about a closer-by-committee situation yet, but his actions certainly indicate that there is a change here. Perhaps there's more to Rondon's situation than just a meltdown so look for a team update soon enough. In the meantime, Ramirez should probably be owned if you're one of the unlucky who is chasing saves this year.ANALYST: Howard Bender
Zach LaVine won the MVP in the Rising Stars Challenge on Friday night.
Before trying to defend his dunk title, from last year, on Saturday, the Minnesota PG played in the Rising Stars Challenge with fellow Freshman and Sophomores in the league. He posted a 30 point seven rebound performance in the defense-less game that ended 157-154 in favor of the U.S. team. LaVine makes the second straight T'wolves player to win the award with Andrew Wiggins winning it last year. LaVine will now turn his attention to winning the dunk title once again in the Slam Dunk Contest on Saturday night. Analysis: Matt Selz
Frankie Montas had rib resection surgery Friday to remove his right first rib.
Montas, considered a top-100 prospect by some publications, had rib surgery on Friday that will keep him out for 2-4 months. The Dodgers hoped that Montas would contribute for the team this season, but it's hard to see that happening now. Montas has an elite fastball that can hit triple-digits, but his delivery and command are messy leading many to believe he's a reliever long term. That said, Montas has the pitches to be a shutdown closer. His upside won't be hurt by the surgery, but his risk and ETA to the majors are a bit higher now. Analysis: Ben Diamond
Walter Tavares was recalled from the D-League.
With the Hawks still without Tiago Splitter, they have been dressing 7'3" Walter Tavares for depth. Tavares has been averaging 9.8 points, 9.6 rebounds and 2.4 blocks in only 21 minutes per game in the D-League. It appears the Atlanta sent Tavares down to get him extra repetitions and he is now back with the team after All Star Weekend is finished. Analysis: Greg Jewett
Athletics designated Sean Nolin for assignment.
In order to clear room on the 40-man roster for Khris Davis, the Athletics have designated for assignment a left-handed pitcher. Sean Nolin who came to Oakland in the Josh Donaldson trade, will be open to the waiver process and could be claimed due to his being a southpaw. Nolin was 2 - 2 in Triple-A last year but may be on his way to a career as a reliever if he wants to stick in the majors. With Oakland as a starter, Nolin was 1 - 2 with a 5.28 ERA and 1.62 WHIP. Analysis: Greg Jewett
Athletics traded C Jacob Nottingham to the Brewers.
Catcher Jacob Nottingham has once again been traded, but the Brewers general manager knows Nottingham well as he came from the Astros front office. Nottingham was a part of the trade to acquire Scott Kazmir. The young catcher will now assume the role of eventual replacement for Jonathan Lucroy for Milwaukee. Nottingham hit .316/.372/.505 in the minors last year with 17 home runs and 82 RBI in 119 games. Analysis: Greg Jewett
Athletics traded Bubby Derby to the Brewers.
Bubby Derby was a sixth round draft choice by Oakland out of San Diego State University. Derby has been traded by Oakland to the Brewers in return for Khris Davis. The young pitcher only appeared in 14 games last year for the A's but did sport a 11.3 strikeouts per nine total along with 1.21 ERA in 37 1/3 innings pitched. Derby will now join the growing list of pitching prospects in Milwaukee. Analysis: Greg Jewett