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Bob Harkins

  1. For all its flaws, MLB’s All-Star Game is best of its kind

    Jul 13, 2011, 2:12 AM EDT


    PHOENIX – Say what you will about MLB’s All-Star Game. Call it ridiculous that the winner of an exhibition game clinches home-field advantage for its league representative in the World Series. Say that the bloated rosters — made even larger by the handful of players who beg out of the game – make a mockery…

  2. Is the All-Star Game a joke? Not to those who are here

    Jul 11, 2011, 10:08 PM EDT

    Ricky Romero

    PHOENIX – Where’s Derek Jeter? That seemed to be the question on the mind of many during Monday’s media day leading up to Tuesday’s All-Star Game. Jeter, the Yankees shortstop, decided not to play in the game, as he has recently returned from the disabled list with a calf injury. Jeter is one of 16…

  3. M’s emergency catcher is Adam Kennedy, who has never caught

    Jun 29, 2011, 4:50 PM EDT


    To follow up on Craig’s earlier post on the Seattle Mariners’ catching situation – always a big water cooler topic – it turns out they do have an emergency catcher after all. His name is Adam Kennedy. And it’s possible there has never been a more reluctant emergency catcher on the history of baseball. Kennedy…

  4. Back injury puts Roy Oswalt’s career in jeopardy

    Jun 24, 2011, 1:35 AM EDT


    Roy Oswalt left the Phillies’ 12-2 loss to the Cardinals on Thursday night after allowing four runs in two innings and feeling tightness in his lower back. Later, we discovered that the pain in Oswalt’s back would cause him to miss his next start. Now, the news has become grim, as the veteran right-hander is…

  5. Charlie Manuel makes plea for a right-handed hitter

    Jun 23, 2011, 1:22 AM EDT


    At 47-28, the Philadelphia Phillies have the best record in baseball. They allow an MLB-best 3.2 runs per game, and trail only the Yankees and Red Sox in run differential. But this team could be better, and Charlie Manuel knows it. The Phillies manager is making a rather public plea for help for his lineup,…

  6. Yankees’ Gardner not sure how to earn more playing time

    Jun 22, 2011, 2:06 AM EDT


    Follow @bharks   Brett Gardner has been one of the Yankees’ hottest hitters for the last two months, hitting .357 with a .440 on-base percentage since April 28. He’s reached base nine times in 15 plate appearances in the three games since replacing the injured Derek Jeter at the lead-off spot. And in his last…

  7. Mother Nature wreaks havoc at U.S. Cellular Field (video)

    Jun 22, 2011, 1:42 AM EDT

    Follow @bharks Mother Nature wreaked havoc on U.S. Cellular Field Tuesday night, as a wild thunderstorm hit the contest between the White Sox and the Cubs, causing a 1 hour, 44-minute delay. Heavy winds made it difficult to get the tarp on the field, leaving the infield a muddy mess for crews to battle after…

  8. Braves’ Prado ‘not close to being ready’ to return

    Jun 21, 2011, 2:41 AM EDT


    Follow @bharks Martin Prado, who underwent surgery on June 10 to remove a staph infection from his lower right leg and left knee, is eligible to come off the disabled list on Thursday. Unfortunately for the Atlanta Braves, that’s not going to happen soon. David O’Brien of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports that Prado is “not…

  9. Ozzie downgrades Twins from piranhas to sardines

    Jun 17, 2011, 2:28 AM EDT

    Follow @BHARKS Back in 2006, Chicago White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen said the Minnesota Twins were “piranhas.” He meant it as a compliment, as in “man those Twins are feisty. They’re small and don’t look so threatening, but they will swarm and take you down!” Or something like that. Now, in the year 2011, Ozzie…

  10. Angels safe after emergency landing at LAX

    Jun 2, 2011, 1:26 AM EDT

    Angels logo

    Follow @bharks The Los Angeles Angels received a scare on Wednesday night when their charter flight was diverted to Los Angeles International Airport for an emergency landing, the Associated Press reported. There were at least 60 people aboard the flight, which was returning from Kansas City, where the Angels wrapped up a 6-game road trip…

  11. Reds’ ‘Mr. May’ Jay Bruce smashes 12th homer of month

    May 31, 2011, 2:39 AM EDT


    They’re calling Jay Bruce “Mr. May” in Cincinnati. And for good reason. The 24-year-old Reds outfielder has had an amazing month, carrying the Reds offense. In Cincinnati’s 7-3 victory over the Milwaukee Brewers on Monday, Bruce was 3-for-4 with a home run and three RBIs, falling a double short of the cycle. He’s bashed 12…

  12. Is improved vision making Bryce Harper even better?

    May 13, 2011, 1:54 AM EDT


    We’ve already discussed how Bryce Harper is making a mockery of the Sally League. The Washington Nationals phenom has a 15-game hitting streak at the moment and is tearing the cover off the ball with a .396/.472/.712 line. It’s impressive for anyone, let alone an 18-year-old playing full-season A-ball for the first time. But Mark…

  13. Boras shoots down idea of Royals locking up Hosmer

    May 13, 2011, 1:22 AM EDT


    Those who follow the Kansas City Royals expected Eric Hosmer to be a star. But they probably didn’t expect him to hit home runs on consecutive days in the Bronx and lead back-to-back victories over the New York Yankees. They also probably didn’t expect they would have to consider the 21-year-old’s departure from Kansas City…

  14. Evan Longoria has magical hands (video)

    May 13, 2011, 1:10 AM EDT


    Everyone knows that Evan Longoria is a great player. The Tampa Bay Rays star third baseman not only has a dangerous bat, but is slick with the glove at third base, as his career UZR/150 of 17.8 attests. But did you know that he doesn’t really even need the glove? At least it seems that…

  15. Are Phillies fans — gasp! — going soft?

    May 12, 2011, 2:54 AM EDT


    Philadelphia sports fans probably get more attention and take more heat for their behavior than any group of their kind in U.S. sports. Whether it’s selling sex for World Series tickets, booing Santa Claus (and robots!) or various other acts of tomfoolery, Philly fans have built a reputation as being, well, a little bit tough.…

  16. Bryan Stow might be changing hospitals

    May 12, 2011, 1:34 AM EDT

    Image of Dodger Stadium beating victim Stow is shown on scoreboard before MLB National League baseball game between San Francisco Giants and St. Louis Cardinals in San Francisco, California

    Bryan Stow, the San Francisco Giants fan who was attacked and brutally beaten at Dodger Stadium on March 31, might be transferred to a hospital closer to his home in the Bay Area, reports Jon Paul Morosi over at Fox Sports. Stow, who currently has stable vital signs but is comatose, has been treated at…

  17. Colby Lewis succeeds because of family, not despite it

    Apr 22, 2011, 2:59 AM EDT

    Spring Training -Texas Rangers - Colby Lewis

    Craig has been all over the Richie Whitt-Colby Lewis story, rightly pointing out the absurdity of the whole thing. If you’re unfamiliar with this story, the writer (Whitt) thinks that the Rangers pitcher (Lewis) should be ashamed of himself for missing a start to witness the birth of his child because … (a) It’s Lewis’ second…

  18. Is Aroldis Chapman’s drop in velocity cause for concern?

    Apr 14, 2011, 3:06 AM EDT


    Is Aroldis Chapman pitching hurt? Is he already being overworked? Cincinnati Reds catcher Ramon Hernandez seems to be concerned. During the eighth inning of Wednesday’s 3-2 defeat to the San Diego Padres, Hernandez called pitching coach Bryan Price and trainer Paul Lessard to the mound after noticing the flamethrower’s velocity was way down. This is what Hernandez…

  19. Vote: Does verdict affect Barry Bonds’ legacy?

    Apr 13, 2011, 6:21 PM EDT

    Oklahoma City Thunder v Los Angeles Lakers, Game 5

    A jury has found Barry Bonds guilty on a charge of obstruction of justice, and was unable to come to a verdict on three other counts of lying to a grand jury in 2003. We can debate the sense of the jury’s conclusion elsewhere, but let’s also consider what — if anything — this does for…

  20. Pedro Martinez wouldn’t mind finishing career with Red Sox

    Apr 9, 2011, 10:21 PM EDT


    Every once in a while someone gets ahold of Pedro Martinez, talks to him about what he’s doing these days, and then gets around to asking the inevitable question: “Are you going to play again?” Martinez has consistently said his return to baseball is unlikely, and that might still be true. But his tune is…

  21. Vote: Will Manny Ramirez get into Cooperstown?

    Apr 8, 2011, 7:42 PM EDT

    So everyone knows the big news by now: Manny Ramirez has called it a career after failing a drug test for the second time since 2009. Craig has a great analysis of Ramirez’s legacy right here, and also writes about the chances — or lack thereof — of the slugger being elected to the Hall…

  22. David Price open to extension with Rays ‘if it’s realistic’

    Apr 4, 2011, 1:58 AM EDT


    A big part of the Tampa Bay Rays’ strategy to compete with the big-market bullies in the AL East is to sign their young, talented players to long-term deals, giving those players some long-term security while buying out their arbitration-eligible years and ideally a year or two of free agency as well. It worked with…

  23. Vote: Pick World Series winner, then argue about it!

    Mar 30, 2011, 9:16 AM EDT

    You’ve seen our picks for this season’s division winners, now it’s your turn to get involved. Vote for who will win the World Series, then argue about it in the comments section! It’s fun, and it sure beats a number of other things you could be doing, like working or going to school. Besides, Diddy wants…

  24. From bar to bigs: Wilhelmsen lands spot in M’s bullpen

    Mar 30, 2011, 1:52 AM EDT


    I had the opportunity to do a story on Tom Wilhelmsen this spring as part of a seven-part series on players chasing their big-league dreams. In case you’re still not familiar with his story, the 6-foot-6 pitcher quit the game in 2004 after being suspended for a second failed test for marijuana. He traveled the…

  25. Brian Wilson ‘less than 50-50’ to start season with Giants

    Mar 29, 2011, 12:44 AM EDT

    San Francisco Giants Victory Parade

    The odds of San Francisco Giants closer Brian Wilson being ready for the start of the regular season aren’t looking good. From Chris Haft of “I’ll be honest — I think it’s less than 50-50,” (manager Bruce) Bochy said when asked about Wilson’s chances of being on the active roster when the Giants open…

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