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  1. Brad Lidge returning tomorrow, but will he close?

    Apr 29, 2010, 5:40 PM EDT

    After back-to-back scoreless outings on his minor-league rehab assignment, Brad Lidge is scheduled to return from the disabled list tomorrow. Two weeks ago Charlie Manuel said Lidge may not immediately reclaim ninth-inning duties, but fill-in closer Ryan Madson blowing two of his last three save opportunities may have changed the manager’s mind. Even setting aside…

  2. Aroldis Chapman remains a work in progress

    Apr 29, 2010, 5:20 PM EDT

    Aroldis Chapman started for Louisville last night and via this scouting report from FanHouse’s Frankie Piliere, he still has some work to do before he’s going to make it to the bigs. Two issues, really. The first was his velocity. While it took Chapman a while to get up to full speed on a cold…

  3. Matt Kemp's agent fires back at Ned Colletti

    Apr 29, 2010, 5:10 PM EDT

    Ned Colletti called out Matt Kemp the other day.  Yesterday Dave Stewart, who (a) is Matt Kemp’s agent; and (b) is one of the more intimidating dudes to have played the game in recent history, fired back: “This kind of thing in all the years I’ve been in baseball has never happened with any general…

  4. Diamondbacks put Kris Benson on disabled list, call up Kevin Mulvey

    Apr 29, 2010, 4:45 PM EDT

    In the least shocking news of the week, Arizona has placed Kris Benson on the disabled list with a sore shoulder. When the Diamondbacks added him to the rotation two weeks ago I wrote that choosing the oft-injured, rarely effective, 35-year-old Benson over various minor-league options made little sense. He was actually better than I…

  5. Dontrelle Willis throws six shutout innings

    Apr 29, 2010, 4:18 PM EDT

    Dontrelle Willis has had a couple of decent starts so far this season, but after today’s performance it may be safe to say that he’s officially back. D-Train threw six shutout innings with six strikeouts and gave up only four hits and two walks, leading the Tigers to a 3-0 win over the Twins. Granted,…

  6. Ian Kinsler set to come off disabled list tomorrow

    Apr 29, 2010, 3:42 PM EDT

    Out since suffering a high-ankle sprain in the middle of spring training, Ian Kinsler is expected to come off the disabled list and rejoin the Rangers’ lineup tomorrow. Ron Washington has said that Kinsler will move from his customary leadoff spot to fifth in Texas’ batting order, which along with the tender ankle should mean…

  7. Whine of the day: Chris Perez

    Apr 29, 2010, 3:12 PM EDT

    “It was a bad baseball play that happened to work out. I don’t want to say it was bush league. But you never see that. Ninety-nine percent of hitters in that situation would rather win the game with a hit, not a bunt. “It was a stupid play that just happened to work.” Indians reliever…

  8. Big trouble ahead if the Rangers deal isn't done in May

    Apr 29, 2010, 2:46 PM EDT

    Evan Grant reports that if the Rangers sale isn’t done by June, the team will have to take more money from Major League Baseball to make ends meet. Last year baseball extended the team a $25 million line of credit. They used $16 million of it in 2009 to meet payroll obligations. Grant reports that…

  9. Jair Jurrjens leaves start with strained hamstring

    Apr 29, 2010, 2:14 PM EDT

    Jair Jurrjens left this afternoon’s start against the Cardinals after just one inning because of a strained hamstring. Jurrjens allowed three runs in the opening frame, at which point reliever Kris Medlen got loose in a hurry out in the bullpen and replaced him to begin the second inning. Off to a rough start even…

  10. MLB, Twitter, and 'strongly worded suggestions'

    Apr 29, 2010, 1:40 PM EDT

    As a follow-up to my MLB/Twitter report from earlier this week, I’m told that what I called a “ban” on MLB.com writers using their Twitter accounts for non-baseball topics was really more like “a strongly worded suggestion” (that every writer followed, since that’s what happens when your employer makes a strong suggestion). To me that…

  11. Shameless Self-Promotion

    Apr 29, 2010, 1:32 PM EDT

    As has become a weekly occurrence, I will be talking baseball live at HotStove.com at 2PM. As always, be there or be a rhombus.

  12. Ron Washington sticks with Neftali Feliz as his closer

    Apr 29, 2010, 1:15 PM EDT

    Despite blowing the save on Monday and allowing two runs in the seventh inning last night, Rangers manager Ron Washington says he’s sticking with Neftali Feliz as his closer. When asked if that was the case, Washington said “Yes. What’s changed?” I’d say that “what’s changed’ is that Feliz is having a lot of trouble…

  13. Twins without Joe Mauer, Justin Morneau, and J.J. Hardy against Dontrelle Willis

    Apr 29, 2010, 12:41 PM EDT

    Minnesota allowed 10 unanswered runs to Detroit last night to turn a 6-1 lead into an 11-6 loss and now the Twins are without Joe Mauer, Justin Morneau, and J.J. Hardy for this afternoon’s series finale. Morneau is out indefinitely after leaving Tuesday’s game with back soreness. Hardy has a case of turf toe that…

  14. When Lou Piniella attacks!

    Apr 29, 2010, 12:20 PM EDT

    Here’s Sweet Lou snapping at that reporter that I mentioned this morning.  

  15. Carlos Beltran fitted for custom knee brace and 'not close to returning'

    Apr 29, 2010, 11:45 AM EDT

    Initial timetables for Carlos Beltran’s recovery from knee surgery had him back in the Mets’ lineup by early May, but Andy Martino of the New York Daily News reports that the All-Star center fielder is still “not close to returning” and “was fitted for a custom knee brace” after meeting with doctors in Colorado last…

  16. Quote of the Day: Gregg Doyel

    Apr 29, 2010, 11:28 AM EDT

    The Phillies aren’t stupid. People are. People like Keith Law of ESPN.com, and anyone out there who thinks like Law  when Law wrote that “this is one of the worst extensions of its kind.” – The always civil Gregg Doyel, taking issue with those who take issue with the Ryan Howard extension. This is the…

  17. Protestors to picket the Cubs-Dbacks game. I kinda wish they wouldn't

    Apr 29, 2010, 10:47 AM EDT

    As you probably know, Arizona passed a law that makes the failure to carry immigration documents a crime and gives the police broad power to detain anyone suspected of being in the country illegally. Supporters believe it to be a necessary move to combat illegal immigration to the state. Opponents call it an open invitation…

  18. Tim Lincecum buzzes the home plate umpire

    Apr 29, 2010, 10:12 AM EDT

    Aaron just told you about the blown save that cost Tim Lincecum and the Giants the game yesterday, but perhaps the most interesting thing that happened in the game occurred when Lincecum faced Cole Hamels in the top of the third. With the count 1-2 to an obviously overmatched Hamels, Lincecum threw a fastball. It…

  19. Blown save keeps Tim Lincecum from 5-0

    Apr 29, 2010, 9:45 AM EDT

    Tim Lincecum was brilliant Wednesday afternoon, racking up 11 strikeouts while holding the Phillies to one run through eight innings. He stayed in to start the ninth inning, but was yanked at 106 pitches after walking Shane Victorino with one out and watched closer Brian Wilson cough up a 4-1 lead. Wilson came into the…

  20. Jeremy Guthrie likes to hit the Yankees

    Apr 29, 2010, 9:20 AM EDT

    Jorge Posada was plunked in the knee with a Jeremy Guthrie pitch in the second inning of yesterday’s Yankees-O’s game and is likely to miss today’s game due to what’s being called a contusion (“bruise” is much too pedestrian a word to use for one of the Core Four). Joe Girardi didn’t like it: “I…

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