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Cubs’ Zobrist remains on leave amid divorce

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Cubs veteran Ben Zobrist remains on a personal leave of absence from the team, and court documents filed in Chicago indicate he is getting divorced.

According to the documents, his wife, Julianna, is listed as the plaintiff. Julianna Zobrist is a professional singer who has performed the national anthem for teams that her husband has played for. She also sang “God Bless America” before Game 4 of the 2016 World Series.

Zobrist, 37, is in the final season of a four-year contract that he signed with the Cubs after beginning his career in Tampa Bay in 2006. He helped the Kansas City Royals to a title in 2015 and did the same the following season in Chicago.

The team has not given a reason for his absence nor a potential return date.

“No indication,” manager Joe Maddon said. “I texted with him the other day and reminded him how much I care about him, how much we miss him.”

Zobrist was hitting .241 with 10 RBIs in 26 games prior to taking his absence from the team.

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Longtime Texas baseball writer Fraley dies at 64

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DALLAS — Gerry Fraley, a longtime baseball writer who spent most of his career with The Dallas Morning News, has died. He was 64.

Fraley died early Saturday after a two-year battle with cancer, the newspaper reported.

After covering the Braves for the Atlanta Constitution-Journal, Fraley joined the Dallas paper in 1989 to cover the Texas Rangers. Fraley also wrote about football, basketball and NASCAR among other assignments for the Morning News.

Assistant managing editor for sports Garry Leavell said Fraley’s versatility “is what separated him from his peers.”

Former President George W. Bush, who was part of the ownership group of the Rangers before going into politics, said, “It always seemed to me that baseball was his real passion, thereby establishing a kinship and a lasting friendship.”

Former baseball commissioner Bud Selig also was among those who respected Fraley’s no-nonsense approach to reporting, saying, “He was fair, honest, a great reporter.”

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Yaz’s grandson to make MLB debut with Giants

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After more than six years in the minor leagues, Mike Yastrzemski — the grandson of Hall of Famer Carl Yastrzemski — will make his major league debut Saturday after being called up for the first time.

Yastrzemski will start in left field for the San Francisco Giants and will bat seventh against the Arizona Diamondbacks.

Yastrzemski, 28, was traded to the Giants in March by the Baltimore Orioles, with whom he made his first big league spring training this year.

Drafted by Orioles in 2013, Yastrzemski rose quickly in the organization before his career stalled. Three years after he was drafted, he was playing for Triple-A Norfolk but then split time between Norfolk and Double-A Bowie, never making the leap to the majors.

“It’s all a learning experience,” Yastrzemski said in March, prior to the trade. “Everybody’s got their own path to get where they want to go; whatever path that is for me, I’m fine with it. As long as you see some light at the end of the tunnel and you put everything into it, it’s rewarding in that sense.”

In seven minor league seasons, Yastrzemski has a .263 average but has never hit more than 15 home runs or had more than 75 RBIs. He was hitting .316 with 12 home runs and 25 RBIs for Triple-A Sacramento this season.

His grandfather, 79-year-old Carl Yastrzemski, spent all 23 years of his major league career with the Boston Red Sox and retired having played the most games (3,308) of any player in major league history to that point. He was an 18-time All-Star, seven-time Gold Glove winner and won the Triple Crown in 1967, when he helped lead the “Impossible Dream” Red Sox to a World Series appearance.

To make room on the roster, the Giants designated outfielder Mac Williamson for assignment. Williamson was hitting .118 in 15 games this season.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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A’s designate reliever Rodney for assignment

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The Oakland Athletics have designated relief pitcher Fernando Rodney for assignment, the team announced Saturday.

Rodney, 42, has seen his ERA balloon to a career-worst 9.42 this season. He had returned to Oakland for 2019 after the A’s exercised a $5.25 million club option.

Rodney has pitched for 10 teams in a 17-year career and ranks 18th in MLB history with 325 saves.

The A’s called up left-hander Wei-Chung Wang from Triple-A Las Vegas. He has 22 games of major league experience, all with the Milwaukee Brewers.

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