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  1. Are you ready for the excitement of the Home Run Derby?

    Jul 11, 2011, 11:00 AM EDT

    American League All-Star Ortiz poses with the trophy after winning Major League Baseball's Home Run Derby in Anaheim

    I’ll spare you all of my grousing about the Home Run Derby. Some people like it. Some people don’t. If you’re in the former camp, mazel tov. If you’re in the latter, may I suggest that you watch “Batman: Under the Red Hood,” which is streaming on Netflix?  I watched that on Saturday and was…

  2. Your Monday Morning Power Rankings

    Jul 11, 2011, 10:30 AM EDT

    Atlanta Braves v Philadelphia Phillies

    The All-Star Break is here, and even though the season is more than half over, it’s that time when everyone assesses the so-called first half.  We’ll do the same here today. The rankings represent the current state-of-the-league, but the comments about each team are a bit more first-half all-encompassing. As always, last week’s rankings are…

  3. The Red Sox are interested in Matt Garza

    Jul 11, 2011, 10:00 AM EDT

    Cincinnati Reds v Chicago Cubs

    I’m struggling to recall the last time we heard something from Phil Rogers’ Sunday “Whispers” column that was both (a) juicy; and (b) actually happened, but this one at least has (a) covered:  The Red Sox are reportedly interested in Matt Garza. Rogers says that Garza is “high on the list.” Which makes sense. Garza’s strikeout…

  4. Dontrelle Willis pitched in the majors again. And it was OK.

    Jul 11, 2011, 9:40 AM EDT

    Cincinnati Reds v Milwaukee Brewers

    Dontrelle Willis made his return to the majors yesterday, starting for the Reds against the Brewers. I like Willis as a person so much that it has pained me to see him struggle these past three years, so I could barely look at the box score last night I was so nervous. But actually: it was…

  5. News Flash: Yankees, Red Sox are baseball’s most popular teams

    Jul 11, 2011, 9:15 AM EDT

    Image (1) yankee%20stadium.jpg for post 4012

    The Harris Poll has released its annual baseball popularity index thingy, and tells us what we all probably knew anyway, even if a lot of us don’t care to acknowledge it: the Yankees are America’s most popular baseball team. They’ve taken the top honor for nine straight years, putting lie to the notion that America loves…

  6. Would you have kept the ball from Derek Jeter’s 3,000th hit?

    Jul 11, 2011, 8:45 AM EDT

    Tampa Bay Rays v New York Yankees

    I joked last week that there was no need to put a special marking on Derek Jeter‘s 3000th hit ball because it was almost certain that it would be some infielder who got it.  Boy, that was wrong. Unless you were under a rock all weekend you know that number 3,000 was a homer. You…

  7. HBT Weekend Wrapup

    Jul 11, 2011, 8:25 AM EDT

    Derek Jeter

    Unusually busy weekend around Major League Baseball. I was without computer access for much of it. Best I can figure: Derek Jeter killed a guy. Seriously. It’s the only thing that can explain all the buzz. Let’s get the story!

  8. And That Happened: Sunday’s scores and highlights

    Jul 11, 2011, 5:26 AM EDT

    Raul Ibanez, Brian McCann

    Phillies 14, Braves 1: Like I’ve always said: you give Cole Hamels 14 runs to work with, and he’s probably going to win. Raul Ibanez drove in five runs in the entire month of June. He drove in six in this game. Oh, and watch the comments here: some readers/Braves fans foolishly bet some Phillies…

  9. U.S. tops World 6-4 in All-Star Futures Game

    Jul 10, 2011, 9:03 PM EDT

    Matt Moore

    The U.S. squad received scoreless performances from nine of its 10 pitchers and got a homer from Indians prospect Jason Kipnis in winning the All-Star Futures Game 6-4 on Sunday. Kipnis homered to start the bottom of the first of Braves phenom Julio Teheran, and the U.S. went on to build a 3-0 lead through…

  10. Wrong hole, Buster!

    Jul 10, 2011, 8:37 PM EDT

    Derek Jeter

    ESPN’s Buster Olney just proposed the following on Twitter: Idea in Monday column:Ask players in March if they will attend ASG if asked and participate if not on DL. If they decline,no name on ballot. Obviously, this is in response to the fact that 16 players have been replaced since the All-Star Game rosters were officially…

  11. Juan Castro retires, joins Dodgers front office

    Jul 10, 2011, 8:22 PM EDT

    Juan Castro

    After 17 seasons in the big leagues — yes, 17 seasons — Juan Castro announced his retirement Sunday and took a job as a special assistant in the Dodgers front office. Now, granted, Castro spent a lot of those 17 seasons playing in the minors, too.  He had one at-bat in 1999, three in 2010,…

  12. X-rays negative on Reynolds, Guerrero; Showalter wants Lackey punished

    Jul 10, 2011, 7:45 PM EDT

    Vladimir Guerrero

    Fortunately, there will be no lasting damage to the Orioles after two more HBPs from the Red Sox on Sunday. Initial X-rays on the hands of Mark Reynolds and Vladimir Guerrero were negative after both were hit by Boston right-hander Kyle Weiland in Boston’s 8-6 win over the Orioles on Sunday. “So far, so good,”…

  13. Bobby Abreu draws three-ball walk in Angels’ victory

    Jul 10, 2011, 7:13 PM EDT

    Bobby Abreu

    What is it with umpires not knowing the count this year? Bobby Abreu walked on ball three in the third inning Sunday in the Angels’ 4-2 win over the Mariners. The walk came with one out and Torii Hunter on first base. Felix Hernandez was able to bounce back and hold the Angels scoreless from there, but…

  14. Montero, Kimbrel added; now up-to-the-minute All-Star rosters

    Jul 10, 2011, 6:02 PM EDT

    Miguel Montero

    According to the San Francisco Chronicle’s Hank Schulman, Miguel Montero has been added to the NL All-Star roster in place of Placido Polanco.  This after Pablo Sandoval was given the spot of Jose Reyes earlier today. So, let’s compile an up-to-date set of All-Star rosters: American League Lineup CF Curtis Granderson SS Asdrubal Cabrera 1B…

  15. Phillies demolish Braves, carry game’s best record into the break

    Jul 10, 2011, 5:21 PM EDT

    Cole Hamels

    The Philadelphia offense came up with 14 largely unnecessary runs in support of All-Star Cole Hamels to rout the Braves on Sunday and finish the first half 57-34. Hamels gave up just one run and three hits in improving to 11-4 this season.  He has a 2.32 ERA and a 0.93 WHIP, but he was…

  16. Two more ejections as Red Sox complete sweep of Orioles

    Jul 10, 2011, 5:00 PM EDT

    Terry Francona

    Home-plate umpire Marty Foster took control of this one with nearly as much finesse as Wily Mo Pena employs attacking a fastball. Red Sox right-hander Kyle Weiland was ejected from his first big-league start and Orioles reliever Mike Gonzalez was tossed an inning later in the finale of the four-game series in Boston on Sunday.…

  17. Ricky Romero replaces Jon Lester replaces Felix Hernandez

    Jul 10, 2011, 4:54 PM EDT

    Ricky Romero

    Just in case you were still keeping score… Felix Hernandez is a 2011 All-Star, but he can’t be on the roster because he started this afternoon’s game for the Mariners. So… Jon Lester is a 2011 All-Star, except he’s on the disabled list with a strained lat muscle and can’t pitch. So… Ricky Romero is…

  18. Yankees making big bucks off Derek Jeter’s 3,000th hit

    Jul 10, 2011, 4:41 PM EDT

    Derek Jeter

    CNBC’s Darren Rovell hears that the Yankees have sold $2.5 million in Derek Jeter merchandise since the shortstop collected his 3,000th hit by homering Saturday. Rovell also reports that Steiner Sports, Jeter’s official memorabilia dealer, was so flooded with calls Saturday that its phone system crashed. Whether the Yankees really thought Jeter would be worth…

  19. Kevin Correia replaces Cole Hamels on NL All-Star roster

    Jul 10, 2011, 4:27 PM EDT

    Chicago Cubs v Pittsburgh Pirates

    Phillies left-hander Cole Hamels is on the mound this afternoon against the Braves and won’t be eligible to pitch in Tuesday’s All-Star Game. His replacement: Kevin Correia, of the surprising Pittsburgh Pirates. Correia, 30, has gone 11-7 with a 4.01 ERA and 1.28 WHIP through 19 starts with the Bucs this season. Those are hardly…

  20. Alex Rodriguez getting knee surgery, out 4-6 weeks

    Jul 10, 2011, 4:17 PM EDT

    New York Yankees v New York Mets

    Welp, the New York Post was right. According to Anthony McCarron of the New York Daily News, Yankees third baseman Alex Rodriguez will undergo surgery on his right knee Monday and will need 4-6 weeks of recovery time. The Yankees’ medical staff diagnosed A-Rod with a torn meniscus on Saturday and recommended that he undergo…

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