Astros exercise Baker’s option
The Astros on Tuesday picked up the option for the 2021 season on manager Dusty Baker’s contract.
Baker was hired in January to replace AJ Hinch, who was fired after he and general manager Jeff Luhnow initially were suspended for a year by Major League Baseball for their roles in the Astros’ sign-stealing scandal. Luhnow also was fired.
Baker, 71, is in his 23rd season as a manager, including four with the Cubs.
‘‘I’ve been a lame-duck manager probably four or five times,’’ Baker said. ‘‘I was one of the lamest ducks walking around . . . . This is the best that I’ve been treated in quite a while.’’
On the field
The benches cleared during the sixth inning at Minute Maid Park after Dodgers reliever Joe Kelly threw a pitch behind Astros third baseman Alex Bregman, then threw another over Astros shortstop Carlos Correa’s head. After striking out Correa, Kelly stuck his tongue out and made a face in his direction, leading to the benches emptying and lots of yelling but no physical contact.
It was the first game between the teams since the Astros beat the Dodgers in the World Series to cap a 2017 season in which they later were found to have cheated by stealing signs.
Adam Frazier hit a tiebreaking two-run home run in the eighth inning, and the Pirates rallied from a four-run deficit to defeat the visiting Brewers 8-6.
This and that
The Cardinals said right-hander Miles Mikolas will have surgery to repair the flexor tendon in his pitching arm and will miss the season. Mikolas, who was expected to make his season debut Wednesday against the Twins, is expected to be back at full strength for spring training next season.
The Rangers put right-hander Corey Kluber on the 45-day disabled list with a torn muscle in the back of his right shoulder suffered while pitching his first inning with the team Sunday. The move likely will keep Kluber out for the season.
The Dodgers’ Joe Kelly and the Astros’ Carlos Correa exchange words Tuesday, emptying the benches in Houston.