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  1. The Rays change the rules regarding balls off the catwalks

    Oct 4, 2010, 2:30 PM EDT

    It’s not often that you see a ground rules change in midstream, but Major League Baseball has approved of new ones for Tropicana Field, effective for the playoffs. Specifically, for balls off the A&B catwalks (i.e. the two highest rings). Previously, if a ball hit those rings, the ball was in play, and it was…

  2. Jeff Wilpon: Omar Minaya had full autonomy

    Oct 4, 2010, 1:59 PM EDT

    As I type this, Fred and Jeff Wilpon are giving a press conference regarding the firings of Omar Minaya and Jerry Manuel. There have been some high points. Fred Wilpon acknowledging that the Mets haven’t won enough and, for the first time I can recall, speaking passionately about the team and saying that it means…

  3. Twins rule out Justin Morneau for the playoffs

    Oct 4, 2010, 1:45 PM EDT

    Two weeks ago Ron Gardenhire replied “I don’t see how it can possibly happen” when asked if Justin Morneau could return from a July 7 concussion to play in the postseason, but then last week Morneau had a handful of symptom-free days and expressed optimism about potentially joining the Twins for the ALCS if they…

  4. What the heck are "pressure starts?"

    Oct 4, 2010, 1:30 PM EDT

    I’m not going to re-re-re-rehash the AL Cy Young arguments here, but this thing from the Daily News’ Bill Madden — Spink Award-winning Bill Madden — begs to be highlighted: The sabermetric guys are making the case for Seattle’s Felix Hernandez, who belies his 13-12 record with a league-leading 2.27 ERA, 249.2 innings, 30 quality…

  5. Joe Torre says managing WBC team "would be interesting"

    Oct 4, 2010, 1:16 PM EDT

    Prior to managing his final game for the Dodgers yesterday Joe Torre reiterated to Tony Jackson of ESPNLosAngeles.com that he doesn’t plan to manage in the big leagues again, but did say that a short-term gig skippering the World Baseball Classic team in 2013 “would be interesting.” You wouldn’t have a lot of baggage there,…

  6. Dusty Baker, Reds sign a two-year extension

    Oct 4, 2010, 1:00 PM EDT

    Not all of today’s managerial news is carnage. Some of it is downright positive: like Dusty Baker and the Reds agreeing to a two-year extension, as the team just said in a press release. It’s a deserved extension. Dusty led the Reds to their first playoff appearance and division title in 15 years, and their…

  7. Oliver Perez ends his season by walking in the go-ahead run

    Oct 4, 2010, 12:45 PM EDT

    Oliver Perez ended his disastrous season on a fitting note yesterday, coming into a 1-1 game in the 14th inning, striking out the first batter he faced, hitting the second batter he faced, and then handing out three straight walks, the last of which forced in the game-winning run with the bases loaded. Now, in…

  8. The Brewers decline to pick up Ken Macha's 2011 option

    Oct 4, 2010, 12:31 PM EDT

    This is neither (a) technically a firing; or (b) a surprise, but it’s now official — via team press release — that the Brewers and Ken Macha are parting ways. It’s not a firing because Macha’s contract was only a two-year thing and it’s now up. The mechanism of his departure is the team declining…

  9. Pirates fire manager John Russell after 299 losses in 3 years

    Oct 4, 2010, 12:15 PM EDT

    As expected, the Pirates just announced that they’ve fired manager John Russell following a 105-loss season and 186-299 (.384) overall record in three years on the job. However, general manager Neal Huntington will keep his job despite being hired just a couple months before Russell and of course being responsible for choosing the manager. Not…

  10. It's finally official: Manuel and Minaya are gone

    Oct 4, 2010, 11:57 AM EDT

    The Mets just issued a press release saying that Jerry Manuel and Omar Minaya have been “relieved of their duties.” This follows their morning release about the sun rising and anticipates their evening release about darkness falling. As soon as it came out a dozen fedora-wearing reporters rushed to pay phones to call in their…

  11. Brad Ausmus announces retirement after 18 seasons

    Oct 4, 2010, 11:49 AM EDT

    As expected, Brad Ausmus announced his retirement yesterday after 18 seasons in the majors and over 15,000 innings logged behind the plate, saying: “I’m ready to stop playing. I just don’t feel like I cant contribute every day.” Ausmus struggled to stay healthy in two seasons as Russell Martin’s backup with the Dodgers, but was…

  12. So how did I do with those predictions?

    Oct 4, 2010, 11:27 AM EDT

    I’m certain that mine weren’t the best around in 2010. I’m pretty sure they weren’t the worst either. How were yours?

  13. Brian Roberts unsure what caused concussion-like symptoms

    Oct 4, 2010, 11:18 AM EDT

    After sitting out the Orioles’ season finale yesterday for his sixth consecutive missed game Brian Roberts revealed that he’s been bothered by “concussion-like symptoms” that have led to “lack of balance and some headaches, and just stuff that hasn’t been a whole lot of fun.” Roberts, who missed nearly the entire first half of the…

  14. Indians promote Chris Antonetti to general manager and name Mark Shapiro team president

    Oct 4, 2010, 10:47 AM EDT

    In a move announced back in February and made official this morning, the Indians have promoted assistant general manager Chris Antonetti to GM while former GM Mark Shapiro becomes team president. Director of baseball operations Mike Chernoff also gets a promotion to assistant GM, essentially moving into Antonetti’s old role, but Anthony Castrovince of MLB.com…

  15. MLB-wide attendance declines for a third straight season

    Oct 4, 2010, 10:15 AM EDT

    MLB set attendance records in 2007, averaging 32,785 fans per game and drawing a total of 79.5 million fans. Since then attendance has dropped each season, going from 32,528 and 78.6 million in 2008 to 30,350 and 73.4 million in 2009. And this season the totals fell again, with MLB averaging 30,141 fans per game…

  16. It's moving day for managers

    Oct 4, 2010, 9:23 AM EDT

    Most of the baseball world is on airplanes today with players, coaches, writers and everyone else flying home or to playoff cities or beaches or duck blinds or wherever it is they spend their offseason.  The exception: top brass who will be meeting for several teams to discuss the fates of their managers. One specifically…

  17. Behold: Your League Leaders

    Oct 4, 2010, 8:48 AM EDT

    True Story: in the 1970s, the Elias Bureau kept track of who led each league in sideburns.

  18. Quote of the Day: Tim Lincecum was really, really ready for his champagne shower

    Oct 4, 2010, 8:25 AM EDT

    And thank you, Associated Press, for protecting our virgin ears.

  19. And That Happened: Sunday's Scores and Highlights

    Oct 4, 2010, 5:00 AM EDT

    The Giants win the West, the Braves take the wild card and the Padres go home. As do 21 other teams on what was the final day of the 2010 regular season.

  20. Some love for Billy Wagner

    Oct 3, 2010, 8:00 PM EDT

    How about ending your career with a season like this: 7 wins, 2 losses, 37 saves, 1.43 ERA, 104 strikeouts and 22 walks in 69 1/3 innings. 39-year-old Billy Wagner, who has maintained all season that this would be his last, ended his 16th major league campaign by striking out the last four batters he…

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