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  1. Cliff Lee traded to the Rangers for Justin Smoak, three others

    Jul 9, 2010, 5:01 PM EDT

    The Mariners have traded Cliff Lee and relief pitcher Mark Lowe to the Rangers for Justin Smoak and three prospects. According to Larry Stone of the Seattle Times, the prospects are pitchers Blake Beavan and Josh Lueke, and second baseman Matt Lawson. Buster Olney is reporting that Seattle is kicking in $2.5 million in order…

  2. Hank Blalock back on the market after release from Rays

    Jul 9, 2010, 4:50 PM EDT

    Tampa Bay released Hank Blalock today after designated him for assignment last week. Blalock earned a shot with the Rays by signing a minor-league deal this spring and hitting .349 in 26 games at Triple-A, but then hit just .254/.319/.349 in 69 plate appearances before they smartly ditched him in favor of Matt Joyce. Blalock…

  3. If the Rangers get Lee, the fur is gonna fly

    Jul 9, 2010, 4:28 PM EDT

    Mark Feinsand of the Daily News is talking to a source — I’m guessing a Yankees source — who says there will be big trouble in baseball if the Rangers get Cliff Lee: “There will be a battle royale over this if Texas gets Lee . . . Every other team in baseball is supplementing…

  4. BREAKING: the Lee deal is blowing up — Rangers jumping in?

    Jul 9, 2010, 4:08 PM EDT

    UPDATE: Sherman is now hearing that it’s the Rangers jumping in (UPDATE: AOL’s Frankie Piliere, a former Rangers scout, is confirming that it’s the Rangers).  If a team is going to come and knock the Yankees’ offer out, it’s likely to be the Rangers and their extremely rich system.  The problem is that’s it’s rich…

  5. Who are the best players never to make an All-Star team?

    Jul 9, 2010, 3:58 PM EDT

    Since the All-Star rosters were announced Sunday people have been arguing about who should and shouldn’t have made the team, with the focus often being on the biggest snubs. But who are the biggest All-Star snubs, in terms of never being picked for an entire career? Baseball-Reference.com recently added that sorting feature to its amazing…

  6. The Tacoma Rainiers scratch tonight's starter. Is it a sign that the Lee deal is done?

    Jul 9, 2010, 3:23 PM EDT

    Ed Price of AOL just noticed that the Tacoma Rainiers — the Mariners’ AAA team — have scratched their starting pitcher, Michael Pineda, from tonight’s game.  Price wonders if that’s a suggestion that the Lee deal is done and that Pineda is going to come up to Seattle tonight to pitch against the Yankees. Makes…

  7. Roy Oswalt would block trades to the Tigers, White Sox

    Jul 9, 2010, 3:15 PM EDT

    Ken Rosenthal tweets that Roy Oswalt — the proud owner of a full no-trade clause — would use that clause to block trades to either the Tigers or the White Sox. He doesn’t say why he doesn’t want to go to those two teams. He’s been reported to be exceedingly fond of life down south,…

  8. Yankees sign Chad Tracy to minor league contract

    Jul 9, 2010, 2:48 PM EDT

    Released by the Cubs last week, Chad Tracy has signed a minor-league contract with the Yankees. Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe reports that Tracy will head to Triple-A, where he’ll “provide protection for Alex Rodriguez and his sometimes balky hip.” Which is true, kind of, except there’s little chance of the Yankees actually giving…

  9. Are the Tigers shopping Rick Porcello?

    Jul 9, 2010, 2:30 PM EDT

    Jon Paul Morosi thinks so. He notes today that the Tigers have pushed back Porcello’s latest AAA start from today until tomorrow, and says it’s not because of an injury.  Rather, he’s told that the Tigers made the decision from up in Detroit and that the pushback may be to accommodate a scouting contingent coming…

  10. Draft 2011 schedule has Opening Day on a Thursday

    Jul 9, 2010, 2:12 PM EDT

    Gordon Edes at ESPN Boston has looked at a draft of the 2011 schedule that is floating around and notices something different: One significant departure in the MLB schedule is that the season will begin at the end of the week (most teams will play on Friday, with presumably one game being played on Thursday…

  11. Carlos Delgado hopes to sign with an MLB team this month

    Jul 9, 2010, 1:45 PM EDT

    Carlos Delgado has started running again following a pair of hip surgeries and told a Puerto Rican newspaper that he plans to sign with an MLB team by the end of this month: We’ve contacted a few teams to let them know that I’m working out and I expect to return. Pretty much planting the…

  12. LeBron got you down? Heyward and Strasburg are not your saviors

    Jul 9, 2010, 1:14 PM EDT

    Young athletes have enough going on without having to deal with your hero worship.

  13. MLB.com gets in on the LeBron James circus for some reason

    Jul 9, 2010, 12:47 PM EDT

    Just in case you somehow didn’t get enough of the LeBron James media circus yesterday, this morning MLB.com had not one, not two, but three different baseball-related (sort of) articles about James: * No LeBron in NY, but Yanks wish him well * Marlins excited LeBron coming to town * LeBron’s move doesn’t surprise Indians…

  14. The Lee deal has to be done before gametime tonight

    Jul 9, 2010, 12:14 PM EDT

    Buster Olney reports that the Yankees want a resolution regarding Cliff Lee “before the game” this evening. Olney also says that the Yankees told the Mariners that their current offer is their last and best offer.  There has been no serious suggestion that the Mariners are balking. And keep in mind — while we’ve been…

  15. Ubaldo Jimenez becomes first pitcher since 2000 with 15 wins before the All-Star break

    Jul 9, 2010, 11:46 AM EDT

    Ubaldo Jimenez may not be the top pitcher of the first half, but by beating Chris Carpenter and the Cardinals yesterday he became the first pitcher with 15 wins before the All-Star break since 2000. Jimenez held the Cardinals to one run in eight innings, bouncing back from three straight poor starts to improve to…

  16. The Dodgers paid an exec $400K to run a $1.6M charity

    Jul 9, 2010, 11:27 AM EDT

    The Dodgers Dream Foundation is “a nonprofit charity whose mission is to serve the educational and athletic needs of children and is supported by donations from the public.” It has an annual budget of about $1.6 million.  The New York Times reports that a full one-quarter of that budget — $400,000 — went to its…

  17. Philly fan pulls a Bartman on Jayson Werth

    Jul 9, 2010, 11:12 AM EDT

    The fact that Jayson Werth has a lot of suitors might suit him just fine, because he’s not exactly enamored with Phillies fans right now.  Well, at least one of them. Last night Werth ranged over the the first base line to try and catch a foul ball.  And he probably would have gotten it…

  18. Study shows participating in Home Run Derby doesn't lead to poor second half

    Jul 9, 2010, 10:47 AM EDT

    There’s a perception that participating in the Home Run Derby makes a player more likely to have a poor second half, with the people who put forth that argument focusing on a handful of prominent cases for support. However, as Derek Carty of The Hardball Times showed in a study last year, reality doesn’t match…

  19. With Lee deal in motion, all eyes turn to Jayson Werth

    Jul 9, 2010, 10:29 AM EDT

    George A. King of the New York Post reports that the Yankees, Red Sox and Rays have told the Phillies that they would be interested in acquiring Jayson Werth. We talked about the Phillies’ rationale for trading Werth yesterday, but the interest on the part of the AL East teams is far more compelling given…

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