Oct 15, 2009, 2:04 PM EST
* MLB announced the umpiring crews for the ALCS and NLCS, and first-round goats C.B. Bucknor, Jerry Meals, and Phil Cuzzi are all absent.
Committing to improving umpire performance and utilizing instant replay further to avoid obvious blown calls would be nice, but short of that keeping the offending umpires off the field is something at least.
* Pedro Martinez hasn’t pitched since September 30 because of injuries and bad weather, but he’ll get the Game 2 assignment for the Phillies and Charlie Manuel said yesterday that he’s “capable of throwing anywhere from like 75 to 90 pitches, maybe 95, maybe even 100.”
* Mariano Rivera has been named Delivery Man of the Year, winning for the third time in the award’s five years of existence. Jonathan Papelbon was the winner in 2007 and Brad Lidge won last season. Joe Nathan finished second to Rivera this year.
* ESPN.com’s Rob Neyer wonders why Bob Brenly isn’t a candidate for various managerial openings given his World Series win in 2001 and .536 winning percentage in four years at the helm in Arizona. Cubs fans ought to be happy that Brenly isn’t a hotter managerial name, because along with play-by-play man Len Kasper he forms one of the best announcing duos in the game.
- Shin-Soo Choo agrees to seven-year, $130 million deal with Rangers 12
- Grant Balfour may file a grievance over Orioles’ decision to back out of contract 22
- Former Major Leaguer Gabe Kapler wants collisions to remain part of the game 39
- Carlos Beltran introduced by the Yankees, takes a shot at the Mets 38
- The Grant Balfour-Orioles deal is dead 25
- Hall of Fame voting expert: Greg Maddux makes it. No one else does. (105)
- I don’t know what the best baseball song is, but it ain’t John freakin’ Fogerty (101)
- Happy Birthday, Ty Cobb! (89)
- ‘Tis the season for people acting incredibly dumb (74)
- The Yankees agree to a one-year, $2 million deal with Brian Roberts (74)