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  1. Phillies top Yankees, lead MLB in attendance for the first time

    Sep 23, 2011, 2:44 PM EDT

    San Francisco Giants v Philadelphia Phillies, Game 1

    Not only does Philadelphia have the best record in baseball at 98-58, the Phillies are going to lead MLB in attendance for the first time in team history. Their final home game was yesterday and it was their 204th straight sellout dating back to 2009. Overall they finished the season with 3,680,718 fans or an…

  2. Denny McLain arrested on a fraud beef; sun rises in east

    Sep 23, 2011, 2:00 PM EDT

    Denny McLain

    You may want to sit down for this — and I understand if you choose to simply not believe it — but former Tigers ace Denny McLain was arrested at the Canadian border yesterday on an outstanding warrant related to fraud charges stemming from some bit of unseemliness down in Louisiana. Yeah, I know. I…

  3. Stat of the Day: Matt Kemp is winning the WAR

    Sep 23, 2011, 1:50 PM EDT

    St Louis Cardinals v Los Angeles Dodgers

    Calcaterra wrote this morning about how Matt Kemp’s run at the Triple Crown has somehow flown under the radar and should make him the NL MVP favorite assuming voters don’t penalize him for having bad (non-Clayton Kershaw) teammates. I’m in complete agreement, but wanted to note that Kemp also fares extremely well in less traditional…

  4. HBT Extra: Yesterday’s Twitter questions today!

    Sep 23, 2011, 1:30 PM EDT

    You asked me questions on Twitter. I answered them yesterday. But we saved them until today so we could talk about the Angels yesterday. Cool?

  5. Cashman: Yankees had “pretend” interest in Carl Crawford to “drive price up” for Red Sox

    Sep 23, 2011, 1:18 PM EDT

    Theo Epstein, Carl Crawford

    General manager Brian Cashman said today that the Yankees’ interest in Carl Crawford was “pretend” and meant only to drive up the price for the Red Sox, who ultimately signed him to a seven-year, $142 million contract. That’s easy to say now that Crawford has had the worst season of his career and the Yankees…

  6. Must-click link: what’s the next baseball movie gonna be?

    Sep 23, 2011, 1:00 PM EDT

    Click Here large

    I mentioned yesterday that if “Moneyball” makes a bunch of dough that Hollywood — being what it is — will likely try to go back to that well as many times as it can.  One candidate would certainly be the Tampa Bay Rays story, working off of Jonah Keri’s “The Extra 2%.”  But really, there…

  7. Mike Scioscia sticks with Bobby Abreu as No. 3 hitter despite .199 average since July 1

    Sep 23, 2011, 12:16 PM EDT

    Bobby Abreu

    Bobby Abreu struck out four times Wednesday and came into last night hitting just .199 with four homers in 59 games since July 1, but as usual he was in the Angels’ lineup as the No. 3 hitter. It was the 94th time this season that manager Mike Scioscia has had Abreu in the third…

  8. No one does self loathing like Boston does self loathing

    Sep 23, 2011, 12:02 PM EDT

    Boston Red Sox designated hitter David Ortiz reacts after flying out against the Tampa Bay Rays during the eighth inning of their MLB American League baseball game at Fenway Park in Boston

    Every city has a unique vibe when it comes to bad baseball news.  A lot of cities do the panic thing with some local  flavor or another. Many others simply tune out and look to another sport like football or hockey to take their minds off things. If the Yankees are doing poorly there’s usually…

  9. Marlins to interview Nationals third base coach Bo Porter

    Sep 23, 2011, 11:51 AM EDT

    Washington Nationals v Colorado Rockies

    For the second year in a row Bo Porter will try to convince the Marlins to hire him as manager. Last year Florida chose Edwin Rodriguez over Porter, who then took a job as Washington’s third base coach, but Adam Kilgore of the Washington Post reports that the Marlins have received permission from the Nationals…

  10. The Indians are getting the band back together tonight

    Sep 23, 2011, 11:36 AM EDT

    Jim Thome

    I mentioned earlier that I’m going up to the Cleveland-Minnesota game tonight.  Some people asked me why on Earth I would do that. Well (a) it’s baseball and baseball is wonderful; and (b) there’s some to-do afoot tonight regarding Jim Thome. Specifically, the Indians will honor Thome with a special ceremony, complete with a presentation…

  11. Start up the Cardinals speculation: Mark Buehrle likes the idea of pitching in the NL

    Sep 23, 2011, 11:19 AM EDT

    Chicago White Sox v Boston Red Sox

    Earlier this week impending free agent Mark Buehrle talked about his uncertain future with the White Sox and how he might even consider retiring at age 32, but yesterday he explained that moving to the National League intrigues him. Buehrle is from Missouri and for years now there’s been speculation about him eventually ending up…

  12. Tim Lincecum does not want a long term deal

    Sep 23, 2011, 11:00 AM EDT

    Lincecum cap

    It seems like he’s been playing forever, but Tim Lincecum still has two more go-arounds in arbitration. Henry Schulman of the San Francisco Chronicle reports, however, that unlike most pitchers, Lincecum doesn’t want a long term deal: “It’s just easier for me mentally not to have to put that kind of pressure on yourself,” he said. “Not that…

  13. Agent: Roy Oswalt “is definitely not retiring”

    Sep 23, 2011, 10:47 AM EDT

    oswalt wide getty

    Roy Oswalt has talked about an early retirement in the past, but yesterday agent Bob Garber told Todd Zolecki of MLB.com that the 34-year-old right-hander is no longer thinking about calling it quits: There’s been a rebirth. There’s been talk in the past about retiring, but that’s not even in the cards at this point.…

  14. Miguel Cabrera will play third base if the Tigers make the World Series

    Sep 23, 2011, 10:30 AM EDT

    Miguel Cabrera

    And these visions .. of Mickey Stanley … still conquer my mind … Miguel Caberea hasn’t played third base since 2008 and hasn’t played it regularly since 2007, but if the Tigers make the World Series this year, that’s where he’ll be playing when Detroit travels to Atlanta, er, I mean the National League park. Why?…

  15. Hamstring injury likely to sideline Mark Lowe in playoffs

    Sep 23, 2011, 10:15 AM EDT

    mark-lowe-rangers

    Texas’ bullpen will likely be short-handed for the beginning of the playoffs, as middle reliever Mark Lowe has been diagnosed with a Grade 2 hamstring strain. Lowe suffered the injury during pregame warmups Wednesday and general manager Jon Daniels called it “a freak thing” that “definitely puts his availability in doubt.” Lowe has pitched well…

  16. The AL wild card tiebreaker could be bananas

    Sep 23, 2011, 9:50 AM EDT

    bananas

    Whenever there is an outrageously wild game going on — usually college basketball, but sometimes baseball too — my friend Amanda Rykoff of espnW tweets that it’s “bananas.”  I wouldn’t dare speak for her, but I think she would agree that the AL wild card tiebreaker has some serious bananas potential. If two teams are…

  17. Moneyball and Rob

    Sep 23, 2011, 9:22 AM EDT

    Rob Neyer

    Rob Neyer has a good post up this morning. It’s his impressions of “Moneyball.” Not a review — he doesn’t presume he can tell us what to think about a movie — but his reflections.  And they’re well worth your time. Why? Because, as Rob notes, he provided a bit of assistance to Michael Lewis…

  18. Justin Verlander IS NOT single-handedly carrying the Tigers into the playoffs

    Sep 23, 2011, 8:50 AM EDT

    Justin Verlander, Victor Martinez

    Before I say what I’m gonna say, please understand: I do not think an MVP vote for Justin Verlander is silly. It is not an outrage. This is one of those years where there are multiple defensible choices and the arguments for some candidates I wouldn’t personally support are nonetheless totally valid.  Verlander may win…

  19. Matt Kemp has a shot at the triple crown

    Sep 23, 2011, 8:25 AM EDT

    San Francisco Giants v Los Angeles Dodgers

    At the outset, I’d like to remind people that I saw Matt Kemp play in a spring training game back in February, observed that he was in great shape and hustled his ass off even though he was with a decidedly B-squad Dodgers team that day and that he looked primed for a big season.…

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

    Sep 23, 2011, 5:49 AM EDT

    New York Mets v St Louis Cardinals

    Mets 8, Cardinals 6:  Wonder of wonder, miracle of miracles, the Mets saved the Braves’ bacon, at least for another day. The Cards had a 6-1 lead after seven, but the bullpen — obviously channeling April — blew it. Or La Russa blew it with the parade of relievers and intentional walks to load the…

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