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  1. Ryan Braun, y’all

    Sep 21, 2012, 12:46 PM EDT

    Ryan Braun Getty new

    Presented without comment …

  2. What in the Hell are the Pirates doing with their instructional League players?

    Sep 21, 2012, 12:32 PM EDT

    090203-N-7303M-011

    Craziness coming out of Pittsburgh. Dejan Kovacevic is reporting that Pirates Instructional League players are training like Navy SEALS down in Florida. Much to their chagrin and possibly to their developmental detriment. Kovacevic reported this last Friday, but today he has more, including an email from Pirates Assistant General Manager Kyle Stark, who is the…

  3. “Lip Sweaters”

    Sep 21, 2012, 11:33 AM EDT

    Dunn_Adam

    I think that’s the real takeaway here. That Dan Hayes of CSNChicago.com — or his headline writer if it wasn’t him — used the term “lip sweater” to describe a mustache. And that’s even more gross than “soup strainer.” In any event, Adam Dunn and Paul Konerko had mustaches they were growing as some sort…

  4. Ernesto Frieri has gone from unhittable to untrustworthy for the Angels

    Sep 21, 2012, 11:19 AM EDT

    Ernesto Frieri

    Ernesto Frieri was absurdly good for the Angels after they acquired him from the Padres on May 3, allowing zero runs in his first 26 appearances while some people asked things like “how can someone with a 0.00 ERA not make the All-Star team?!” In those first 26 shutout appearances for the Angels he had…

  5. Alex Avila cleared to return

    Sep 21, 2012, 11:02 AM EDT

    Alex Avila Reuters

    Be it a concussion, a “mild concussion,” a sore jaw or whatever else you want to call it, Alex Avila has been cleared to return to action: Catcher Alex Avila has been cleared to play now that the headaches from his sprained jaw have disappeared. Avila probably will start tonight against the Twins after missing the entire A’s…

  6. Mike Scioscia and struggling C.J. Wilson had another closed-door meeting

    Sep 21, 2012, 10:47 AM EDT

    C.J, Wilson

    C.J. Wilson struggled again Wednesday night, as his former Rangers teammates knocked him out of the game in the third inning, and afterward he had what Mike DiGiovanna of the Los Angeles Times describes as “a lengthy closed-door meeting” with manager Mike Scioscia. According to DiGiovanna it’s the second such meeting Wilson and Scioscia have…

  7. Nationals turn to Chien-Ming Wang for spot start Sunday

    Sep 21, 2012, 10:15 AM EDT

    Nationals' Wang throws against the Los Angeles Dodgers during Game 2 of their MLB National League baseball doubleheader in Washington

    Now that the Nationals have clinched a playoff spot they’re willing to give Chien-Ming Wang a turn in the rotation, so the oft-injured right-hander will make a spot start Sunday against the Brewers. Wang hasn’t started a game since June 19, when he failed to make it out of the fourth inning against the Rays,…

  8. No, Melky Cabrera’s batting title will not be the result of a “loophole”

    Sep 21, 2012, 10:05 AM EDT

    Melky Cabrera

    There are a lot of people who (a) don’t want to see Melky Cabrera win the batting title; but (b) find it unseemly for baseball to change its rules on the fly in order to thwart Cabrera.  That’s totally understandable. The problem comes when those folks try to get around all of that like Gwen…

  9. Bryce Harper doesn’t pay attention to the standings

    Sep 21, 2012, 9:40 AM EDT

    bryce harper getty

    From CSNWashington.com, we learn that Bryce Harper does not wake up each morning and check the standings. From the scene of last night’s playoff-clinching celebration: “Everyone started going crazy and I looked at the fireworks and said ‘I guess we just did something.’ Someone handed me a playoff hat and a playoff shirt and I…

  10. Cupcakes, clinchers to decide the NL Wild Card

    Sep 21, 2012, 9:16 AM EDT

    Horse race

    File this under Deep Thoughts, I guess, but I’m struck by the remaining schedules of the NL Wild Card contenders: Cardinals: Cubs, Astros, Nationals, Reds; Brewers: Nationals, Reds, Astros, Padres; Dodgers: Reds, Padres, Rockies Giants The Cards seem to have the easiest go of it, with two cupcake teams and two teams that have clinched…

  11. Josh Hamilton leaves the team due to vision, sinus problems

    Sep 21, 2012, 8:52 AM EDT

    josh hamilton getty

    Josh Hamilton has missed the last two games with sinus trouble so severe that it has affected his vision.  They’ve gotten so bad now that he had to leave the Rangers’ road trip last night and is flying back to Texas to be examined by team doctors. If he ends up missing the entire Rangers-Mariners…

  12. Robinson Cano, Scott Boras shoot down PED test rumor

    Sep 21, 2012, 8:29 AM EDT

    New York Yankees v Boston Red Sox

    Yesterday afternoon rumors began popping up all over Twitter that Robinson Cano had tested positive for PEDs and had a suspension looming.  Cano and his agent Scott Boras forcefully shot that down yesterday: “Not at all,” Cano told The News. “There’s no test or anything.” Cano’s agent, Scott Boras, also told The News that the…

  13. And That Happened: Thursday’s scores and highlights

    Sep 21, 2012, 5:40 AM EDT

    Nationals' Wang throws against the Los Angeles Dodgers during Game 2 of their MLB National League baseball doubleheader in Washington

    Nationals 4, Dodgers 1: Congrats to the Nats for clinching the first postseason birth for a D.C. team since 1933. Pour one out for Joe Cronin, Moe Berg, Lefty Stewart and Heinie Manush. Reds 5, Cubs 3: And congratulations to the Reds too, who clinched their spot hours before the Nats did.  The Reds are…

  14. If not for Bud, Braves would be World Series favorites

    Sep 21, 2012, 12:05 AM EDT

    Craig Kimbrel

    Who’s with me? The Nationals’ four projected starters are a combined 1-1 with a 4.91 ERA in the postseason, with that entire track record belonging to Edwin Jackson. They have one hitter in their lineup with a .350 OBP. They don’t have any big holes in their lineup, but they also don’t have anyone with…

  15. Nationals clinch D.C.’s first playoff berth since 1933

    Sep 20, 2012, 11:00 PM EDT

    Ross Detwiler

    There will be October baseball in our nation’s capital for the first time in 79 years. The Nationals beat the Dodgers 4-1 on Thursday to clinch a postseason berth. Not only will this mark the team’s first playoff appearance since moving to Washington in 2005, but it’s the franchise’s first playoff berth since the Expos…

  16. Phil Hughes fans four in an inning against Blue Jays

    Sep 20, 2012, 10:10 PM EDT

    hughes throws getty

    Phil Hughes became just the second pitcher in Yankees history to strike out four batters in an inning when he fanned J.P. Arencibia, Adeiny Hechevarria, Anthony Gose and Brett Lawrie in the fourth Thursday against the Blue Jays. Hechevarria reached on a Russell Martin passed ball after his strikeout, making the rare feat possible. No…

  17. Back where we started: The Pirates are, once again, below .500

    Sep 20, 2012, 9:26 PM EDT

    Milwaukee Brewers v Pittsburgh Pirates

    The Pirates were below .500 on May 29th. Then they figured out their offense, rode A.J. Burnett and some other unexpectedly good arms for a while and put a run on that had everyone in Pittsburgh thinking not only a winning season, but a playoff season. Indeed, they were 16 games over .500 at one…

  18. See the trailer to the new Jackie Robinson movie, “42”

    Sep 20, 2012, 8:55 PM EDT

    Boseman as Robinson

    I’m not the best judge of movies based on trailers, but after watching the trailer to “42,” the new Jackie Robinson biopic coming out next April, I’m quite optimistic and enthused.  You can watch the trailer here. Chadwick Boseman plays Robinson. Harrison Ford plays Branch Rickey.  Based on the trailer, it’s the first time Ford…

  19. Great moments in media relations: Phillies edition

    Sep 20, 2012, 8:27 PM EDT

    Phillies Logo

    Being totally honest here: the Phillies media relations people are pretty awesome.  I’ve not dealt with them too much, but when I was in Clearwater for spring training a couple years ago they were easily the coolest operation in the Grapefruit League (the Dbacks folks in the Cactus League are incredibly nice and accommodating too; it’s…

  20. Jeremy Hefner can’t get an out against the Phillies

    Sep 20, 2012, 7:44 PM EDT

    Jeremy Hefner, Terry Collins

    The Mets’ Jeremy Hefner was pulled from his start Thursday against the Phillies after failing to retire any of the seven batters he faced. Hefner gave up six singles in a row, including a bunt single to Juan Pierre, and then walked Kevin Frandsen with the bases loaded before being replaced by Collin McHugh. Since…

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