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  1. On Opening Day, I went to church…

    Apr 1, 2011, 1:12 PM EDT

    busch

    I’ve lived in St. Louis since 1996 and have spent 20 or so days and nights at Cardinals games each season since I moved here. But I had never been to the Cardinals’ home opener until yesterday. I don’t love the new Busch Stadium. There are too many gaudy ads and the decision to switch…

  2. April Fools? Willie Bloomquist is leading off for Diamondbacks

    Apr 1, 2011, 12:33 PM EDT

    willie-bloomquist-diamondbacks

    Willie Bloomquist is a poor man’s Jeff Francoeur in that wherever he goes the local media members do glowing features on him, the managers play him far too often, and he performs terribly. It didn’t take long for Bloomquist to cast his spell on Arizona manager Kirk Gibson, who has inexplicably written him into the…

  3. Giants fan “critically beaten in parking lot at Dodger Stadium”

    Apr 1, 2011, 12:05 PM EDT

    dodger-stadium

    KTLA television in Los Angeles reports that a Giants fan was “critically beaten in a parking lot at Dodger Stadium” during last night’s season opener. According to station’s website, the incident occurred around 8:30 pm and police are looking for two suspects. Here are a few more details: The victim and two friends, who were…

  4. Julio Borbon to start in center field for Rangers after rough spring

    Apr 1, 2011, 11:49 AM EDT

    Texas Rangers v Seattle Mariners

    Rangers manager Ron Washington said over the winter that he wanted to use Julio Borbon in center field this season in an effort to protect the injury-prone Josh Hamilton. Not a bad idea, really, but those plans appeared to be in doubt due to concerns about Borbon’s defense — he committed five errors this spring…

  5. White Sox international scouting director Jerry Krause leaves for job with Diamondbacks

    Apr 1, 2011, 11:20 AM EDT

    jerry krause white sox

    Jerry Krause is best known as general manager of the Michael Jordan-led Bulls dynasty, but he’s actually spent most of his career as a baseball scout and was the guy who recommended the White Sox trade for a Triple-A shortstop named Ozzie Guillen in 1984. Krause has served as the White Sox’s director of international…

  6. Phillies sign Ronnie Belliard to a minor league contract

    Apr 1, 2011, 10:58 AM EDT

    Ronnie Belliard Getty Yanks

    One day after releasing Luis Castillo, the Phillies have signed infielder Ronnie Belliard to a minor league contract, reports Todd Zolecki of MLB.com. He’ll report to Triple-A Lehigh Valley. Belliard, who turns 36 next week, was released by the Yankees earlier this week after batting just .136 with one double and one RBI over 22…

  7. Roberto Alomar rejoins Blue Jays as special assistant

    Apr 1, 2011, 10:44 AM EDT

    idmkrlz3.JPG

    Roberto Alomar will be wearing on a Blue Jays hat on his plaque when he’s inducted into the Hall of Fame later this year and in the meantime he’s joined the organization as a “special assistant.” According to Mark Zwolinski of the Toronto Star he’ll “serve his role in baseball operations and the Toronto community”…

  8. Freddy Sanchez agrees to one-year, $6 million extension with Giants

    Apr 1, 2011, 10:10 AM EDT

    Freddy Sanchez, Bruce Bochy, Brian Sabean

    San Francisco acquired second baseman Freddy Sanchez from Pittsburgh in mid-2009 and then signed him to a two-year, $12 million contract extension despite his playing poorly while missing time with injuries down the stretch. He bounced back with a productive 2010, albeit while missing another 50 games with injuries, and now the two sides have…

  9. On my way to Opening Day

    Apr 1, 2011, 9:42 AM EDT

    Progressive Field Snow

    I’m about ready to leave my fortified compound and hit the road up to Cleveland for Opening Day, where I’ll see the Tribe take on the White Sox.  While there I’ll be the guest of the Indians in the Indians Social Suite, which should be cool. Depending on the conditions (of both me and the…

  10. Mike Pelfrey pitched with a bum rotator cuff most of last year

    Apr 1, 2011, 9:15 AM EDT

    Pelfrey_Mike

    Mike Pelfrey is the defacto ace of the Mets staff. And, while he’s not elite or anything, he showed in 2010 that he can be a dependable starter. Which is nuts considering that, as the Daily News reports, he pitched most of the 2010 season with a messed up shoulder: “I had a strained rotator…

  11. Photo of the Day: Pete Rose looks great

    Apr 1, 2011, 8:45 AM EDT

    Ring! Ring! Pete Rose: Hello? Bud Selig: Pete, it’s Commissioner Selig. How are you? Rose: Awful. Because I’m Pete Rose and my very existence is borderline pathetic. Selig: That’s great, Pete. Hey: I got some good news and some bad news. Rose: Shoot. The Hit King is listening. Selig: The good news is that we’ve…

  12. Bud Selig: smokeless tobacco should be banned in the majors

    Apr 1, 2011, 8:22 AM EDT

    Dykstra Tobacco

    There has been increasing pressure from anti-tobacco groups — and Congress — on Major League Baseball to do something about smokeless tobacco use by major leaguers. To date, baseball has merely acknowledged that it’s and issue, noted that it’s already banned at minor league parks and has made mention of the fact that doing anything…

  13. And That Happened: Opening Day’s scores and highlights

    Apr 1, 2011, 5:30 AM EDT

    San Francisco Giants v Los Angeles Dodgers

    For those of you new to in-season HardballTalk, know this: each weekday morning — and maybe some weekend mornings; I’m thinkin’ about it — I recap the previous day and/or night’s action in a little feature called “And That Happened.”  This is ATH’s fourth year, as I began it over at my old haunt, ShysterBall,…

  14. HBT opening day wrapup

    Mar 31, 2011, 11:02 PM EDT

    Detroit Tigers v New York Yankees

    There are over 2000 major league baseball games in a season. As such, the outcome of any one of them really doesn’t amount to a hill of beans in this crazy world. But we pay greater attention on opening day. Indeed, some of us sat in front of television and computer screens for, oh, 10 straight…

  15. Brian Wilson making progress from oblique injury

    Mar 31, 2011, 8:40 PM EDT

    Brian Wilson

    According to Andrew Baggarly of San Jose Mercury News, Brian Wilson threw approximately 30 pitches in a five-minute bullpen session earlier today in Los Angeles. Wilson, who was placed on the disabled list yesterday with a left oblique strain, was able to throw with “apparent maximum effort.” How’s the oblique feeling, by the way? “It’s…

  16. Mat Latos throws off mound for first time in 10 days

    Mar 31, 2011, 7:10 PM EDT

    Oakland Athletics v San Diego Padres

    Mat Latos, who was recently placed on the disabled list with bursitis in his right shoulder, threw off the mound earlier today for the first time in 10 days, reports Corey Brock of MLB.com. Latos said he felt fine during the throwing session, which took place prior to today’s game against the Cardinals at Busch…

  17. Ramon Hernandez’s blast caps comeback for Reds

    Mar 31, 2011, 5:51 PM EDT

    Ramon Hernandez, Prince Fielder

    Pulling off a big Opening Day comeback, the Reds scored four times off John Axford in the bottom of the ninth Thursday to beat the Brewers 7-6. The Brewers supplied all of the fireworks early on today, with Rickie Weeks and Carlos Gomez delivering back-to-back homers to start the top of the first against Edinson…

  18. Brooks Robinson “responding well” after emergency surgery

    Mar 31, 2011, 5:33 PM EDT

    brooks-robinson-orioles

    Brooks Robinson was rushed to the hospital by ambulance last night and underwent emergency surgery this morning, but the 73-year-old Hall of Famer issued a statement this afternoon saying he’s doing well: I was originally scheduled for a routine outpatient procedure at Greater Baltimore Medical Center on Thursday, March 31, 2011. The evening before surgery,…

  19. Not the best day for the prosecution in the Barry Bonds case

    Mar 31, 2011, 5:30 PM EDT

    Barry Bonds

    It was a short day for the Bonds trial — they must all want to get home in time to watch the Giants-Dodgers — and they are now wrapped up for the week.  A bad morning for the prosecution, though, as Bonds’ former orthopedic surgeon, Arthur Ting, totally killed one of the prosecution’s key witnesses,…

  20. Jason Heyward: MLB’s best No. 6 hitter

    Mar 31, 2011, 4:10 PM EDT

    Braves' Heyward hits a home run against the Nationals during the second inning of their MLB National League baseball game in Washington

    For the second straight Opening Day, Jason Heyward homered in his first at-bat Thursday, drilling a Livan Hernandez offering barely over the wall in right field in the second inning. As it turned out, it was the Braves’ second and final run of the day.  Heyward received just two more plate appearances, walking in one…

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