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Bob Harkins

  1. A new bed for Beckett, please

    Sep 29, 2009, 6:57 PM EDT

    Rest easy Red Sox fans, Josh Beckett’s aching back did not come about as a result of pitching, but from an inability to, umm, rest easy (from the Globe): “It was just something that you wake up with,” Beckett said. “It wasn’t like I felt anything when I was throwing. You just you wake up…

  2. Brewers to consider dealing Prince Fielder

    Sep 28, 2009, 10:33 PM EDT

    Milwaukee Brewers owner Mark Attanasio has told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel that he and general manager Doug Melvin are exploring every avenue to improve their team for next season, even if that means trading its best hitter, Prince Fielder. “I don’t like thinking about the Milwaukee Brewers without Prince Fielder, I’ll tell you that,” Attanasio…

  3. The Week Ahead: It's clinching time

    Sep 28, 2009, 2:30 AM EDT

    The New York Yankees are in. The St. Louis Cardinals, too. The Los Angeles Dodgers are assured at least the NL wild-card slot, and will soon be celebrating a division title. And these traditional powers are about to have a lot more company very soon. What’s left in baseball’s playoff races? Not a whole lot,…

  4. Jim Rice isn't too impressed with Zack Greinke

    Sep 24, 2009, 8:06 PM EDT

    All you Zack Greinke fans out there are not going to be too happy with Jim Rice (from Ask 14, with a hat tip to Joe Posnanski): Zack Greinke didn’t really impress me last night. He pitched well and maybe I caught him on a bad night, but to me he didn’t seem dominant. Greinke…

  5. Some positivity for the non-contenders

    Sep 24, 2009, 1:24 AM EDT

    It’s so easy to get down this time of year. The weather is getting chilly, it’s not staying light out as late, and if your team isn’t in playoff contention – and in this dullest of September stretch runs, you pretty much know by now – the final days of the season can be quite…

  6. Don't get defensive about stolen base indifference

    Sep 22, 2009, 11:55 PM EDT

    If I write this story and no one cares, should it count? (Don’t answer that please!) I think of this after seeing an interesting story by the New York Times’ Jack Curry on the only time a stolen base doesn’t count as a stolen base: When the defense doesn’t care. You may have already known…

  7. The Week Ahead: The Evil Empire is back

    Sep 21, 2009, 12:38 AM EDT

    At some point this week, the New York Yankees will officially be back. Back in the postseason, back on top of the AL East and back on the throne as favorites to win the World Series. It wasn’t a long hiatus, at least by the standards of mere mortals. But things are different in the…

  8. Carting Aaron Harang around just got easier

    Sep 17, 2009, 11:57 PM EDT

    Aaron Harang, the Reds’ veteran pitcher, got some nice publicity on Thursday when news broke that he had purchased a golf cart for the Reds clubhouse attendants. It’s a souped-up, cherry-red model, with six seats, an operational horn, and even a roof. Harang has been on the DL since Aug. 23 after undergoing an emergency…

  9. Ex-Cubbie scrounging for tuition money

    Sep 17, 2009, 9:27 PM EDT

    The sale of the Chicago Cubs has hit a road block. Former Cubs shortstop Shawon Dunston, a two-time All-Star, has filed an objection to the sale of the team to the family of billionaire Joe Ricketts, claiming that the team still owes him college scholarship money. In a handwritten, one-paragraph statement docketed by the court…

  10. Angels have weak link at closer

    Sep 16, 2009, 11:43 PM EDT

    The Los Angeles Angels look like a solid championship contender this season. They’ve got a good offense (1st in AL in hitting, 2nd in runs), speed on the bases (2nd in steals), a decent defense (6th in UZR) and a solid starting rotation that has improved with the addition of Scott Kazmir. The weakness, if…

  11. Just take your base, Jorge

    Sep 16, 2009, 2:36 AM EDT

    Take your base Jorge. Just take your base. That’s what you do when a pitcher throws a pitch behind you. A pitcher on a team that is not going to come anywhere near sniffing the playoffs. Yes, Jesse Carlson threw that ball near your backside on purpose (somehow he missed). He was trying to hit…

  12. Tejada stealing signs? Astros are outraged

    Sep 15, 2009, 12:26 AM EDT

    A couple of weeks ago, the New York Times brought to light a story about the 2001 Oakland A’s, and how some of the players were concerned that their star shortstop Miguel Tejada was tipping pitches to friends on opposing teams. Tejada denied the accusations, his teammates ended up backing him up, and nothing came of…

  13. Hudson, Braves after long-term deal?

    Sep 14, 2009, 11:16 PM EDT

    Tim Hudson is beating the drum for a contract extension in Atlanta, bringing up the phrase “hometown discount” in reference to possibly turning his $12 million option for 2010 into a multi-year deal instead (from MLB.com): “I would be glad if they picked up the option,” Hudson said. “But it’s one of those things if…

  14. The Week Ahead: Timmy to the rescue?

    Sep 13, 2009, 10:42 PM EDT

    Tim Lincecum will take the mound for the San Francisco Giants on Monday after missing his last start with “spasms and inflammation” in his back. His return couldn’t come any sooner. This is a huge week for San Francisco, a surprise contender this season that is currently on the verge of dropping to the fringe…

  15. How not to steal a baseball monument

    Sep 9, 2009, 7:00 PM EDT

    Four men have been arrested on charges of felony theft and destruction of property, accused of removing a four-foot aluminum monument to Cal Ripken from outside Camden Yards on Wednesday. It took police all of two hours to track them down, thanks to a number of mistakes they made along the way … – They…

  16. Time for change: Phillies can't rely on Lidge

    Sep 9, 2009, 1:42 AM EDT

    Before Tuesday’s game against the Nationals, Phillies manager Charlie Manuel spoke glowingly of his embattled closer Brad Lidge, saying “I want him to realize how much confidence we have in him.” Lidge repaid his manager by going out and vomiting all over that confidence, allowing a walk, a single, and a hit batter before Manuel…

  17. Over-the-hill veterans like Seattle

    Sep 8, 2009, 11:30 PM EDT

    First, Ken Griffey Jr. said he was interested in playing another season, perhaps in Seattle. Now, according to Geoff Baker of the Seattle Times, Mike Sweeney is singing the same song. “We’ll see what happens this winter. I probably won’t know if I’ll get the opportunity to play for another five months or so. But…

  18. Pirates will try anything to distract us

    Sep 8, 2009, 9:07 PM EDT

    The Pittsburgh Pirates are doing their best to distract everyone from this, their 17th consecutive losing season. And while I’m not one to say their streak makes them the worst sports franchise in history, I’m also not above picking on them, or old people, for that matter. Which brings us to Tuesday’s pregame ceremony, in…

  19. What happened to the playoff races?

    Sep 8, 2009, 2:33 AM EDT

    Are the playoff races all but over? From the Washington Post … Baseball’s playoff race died suddenly this weekend of natural causes. It was five months old. Survivors include the St. Louis Cardinals, New York Yankees, Philadelphia Phillies, Detroit Tigers, Los Angeles Angels and Los Angeles Dodgers. Indeed this weekend was rough on some of…

  20. Kershaw will run through walls, unfortunately

    Sep 7, 2009, 9:51 PM EDT

    When you get into a fight with a drunk, you don’t hit him with your pitching hand. Furthermore, when you run into an outfield wall, you don’t lead with your pitching shoulder. At least Clayton Kershaw got that right. The Dodgers left-hander, effectively wild this season while compiling an 8-8 record with a 2.89 ERA…

  21. 'Super awesome' Chris Carpenter

    Sep 7, 2009, 8:03 PM EDT

    You’ve heard the names thrown out there regarding the NL Cy Young race. Tim Lincecum, the reigning Cy winner and MLB strikeout leader who has a flair for hair. Adam Wainwright, who leads all of baseball with 17 wins. Heck, even Phillies rookie J.A. Happ has received some buzz. But look out everyone, here comes…

  22. The Week Ahead: Last chance for Rays

    Sep 7, 2009, 1:19 AM EDT

    With apologies to the Philadelphia Phillies, the Tampa Bay Rays were the story of the postseason last year. They were the plucky little low-budget engine that could, discarding all comers — including mighty Boston in the ALCS — until meeting up with the eventual champions in the World Series. They’ve still got a nice ballclub,…

  23. Taking a moment to admire Ichiro

    Sep 6, 2009, 9:24 PM EDT

    Let’s take a moment to admire Ichiro. In case you didn’t notice, the Seattle Mariners right fielder is good at hitting. He can hit it off his shoe tops. He can hit it from eye-level. He can jerk it down the line, slash it up the middle or lace it over the third baseman’s head.…

  24. A helmet, and a helping hand for Victorino

    Sep 4, 2009, 12:16 AM EDT

    While David “Lord Helmet” Wright has suddenly become ashamed of his massive brain protector, Shane Victorino is going in the opposite direction. The Phillies center fielder is giving the fancy new Rawlings helmet a try. Victorino has always kind of looked like a little leaguer anyway in that double-flapped model, so he doesn’t have much…

  25. Yanks threaten record for balance of power

    Sep 3, 2009, 9:57 PM EDT

    The New York Yankees pretty much have everything going for them this season – aside from some minor complaints about bullpen depth, but whatever. One impressive piece of information in relation to the Yankees’ title hopes is their balance and depth, as illustrated nicely by this handy-dandy wins-over-replacement pie chart (thanks UmpBump). No matter where…

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