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Francona, Hurdle honored as top managers

Francona Named AL Supervisor Of The Year

 

BIG APPLE – Two championships and eight successful seasons in Boston introduced Terry Francona precisely zero first-place votes in Supervisor of the Year balloting.

It took him one yr with the stunning Cleveland Indians to bag the prize.

Francona and Clint Hurdle of the Pittsburgh Pirates received the Manager of the Yr awards Tuesday after guiding their small-finances groups to charming turnarounds.

In a detailed vote by the Baseball Writers’ Affiliation of America panel, Francona edged old friend John Farrell of the World Sequence champion Red Sox 112 factors to ninety six for the American League honor.

“I have a feeling he would not commerce what they did for this any day of the week,” Francona mentioned on a convention call from Tucson, Ariz.

Hurdle was a runaway winner in the NL, selected first on 25 of 30 ballots after taking the Pirates to the playoffs of their first successful season since 1992.

“It’s so rewarding for me to see what’s happened, the synergy in the metropolis,” Hurdle mentioned in Pittsburgh. “To be a small a part of a group that’s able to carry joy at so many different levels – that’s what’s rewarding to me in life.”

It was the first Manager of the Year honor for Francona, regardless that – in an fascinating twist – he steered the Red Sox to World Sequence titles in 2004 and 2007. Throughout his initial season with the Indians, he directed them to a 24-win enchancment and their first playoff berth in six years.

They lost the AL wild-card game to Tampa Bay, but voting is performed earlier than the postseason.

Francona said he called Farrell, a longtime colleague and once his pitching coach in Boston, on Tuesday morning as a result of he thought it was funny they were up against each other as finalists for the award.

Clint Hurdle

Clint Hurdle ended 20 years of futility in Pittsburgh and was rewarded Tuesday with the NL’s Manager of the 12 months award.

If they heard such information years in the past, Francona stated, “both of us would have laughed each other out of the room.”

Hurdle also was quick with a self-deprecating joke after he gained.

“There’s guys laughing all over,” he mentioned in an interview on MLB Community. “The players know so many times this season we might have a giant collection, getting together just attempting to break the ice I’d tell them, ‘Hey, look guys, you’ve got to step it up, play huge this week as a result of I’ll get outmanaged. I can tell you one thing that’s going to occur: I will get outmanaged. So really step it up.’ And so they did. They believed me each series.”

Similar to Francona, the fifty six-year-old Hurdle received Supervisor of the 12 months for the first time. His highest finish had been third in 2007, when he led Colorado to the World Sequence.

Don Mattingly of the NL West champion Los Angeles Dodgers came in second and Fredi Gonzalez of the NL East champion Atlanta Braves was third.

The only different Pittsburgh supervisor to win was Jim Leyland in 1990 and 1992, the bookends to three consecutive division titles for the Pirates.

After that, they endured a document 20 straight shedding seasons – the longest drought in any of the 4 main skilled sports activities – before going ninety four-sixty eight this year to capture an NL wild card.

Using a wave of excitement from a rejuvenated fan base in a metropolis lastly enthralled by baseball once more, Pittsburgh beat Cincinnati in the wild-card game earlier than shedding to league champion St. Louis in a division sequence that went the complete 5 games.

“I’m a realist, but I’m an optimist,” stated Hurdle, who has managed the Pirates for 3 seasons. “Everyone played a component.”

Hurdle was chosen second on the opposite 5 ballots and was the only NL supervisor picked on each one. He had a hundred and forty factors in the 5-3-1 scoring system to 68 for Mattingly, who acquired two first-place votes. Gonzalez bought three first-place votes and had forty three points.

Mike Matheny of the Cardinals was the only different skipper to appear on a ballot . He was tabbed second by 4 voters and third by seven.

Cy Younger Award winners shall be announced Wednesday evening, and MVPs on Thursday.

Francona garnered 16 first-place votes to 12 for Farrell, who lifted the Red Sox from last place to first within the AL East in his debut season as their supervisor. Boston won 97 games, tied for most in the majors, one yr after going sixty nine-93 under Bobby Valentine.

Bob Melvin, final year’s winner, received the other two first-place votes and came in third after his low-payroll Oakland Athletics gained their second consecutive AL West crown.

Francona never received a primary-place vote during eight seasons as manager of the Red Sox. He had by no means completed higher than fourth for this award in 12 years as a giant league skipper, together with his stint with Philadelphia.

After a messy cut up from the Red Sox following their 2011 collapse, Francona spent a 12 months in broadcasting that he stated helped him become more affected person and fewer stubborn.

This season with the Indians was one in every of his most enjoyable in baseball, he mentioned, and he loves the individuals he works for because when challenges come up “we sort out them collectively.”

“Boston is, you’re probably not purported to ever lose a sport, and that’s tough to do,” Francona said, including the job there may be “to handle all of the noise that’s across the workforce so the guys can play.”

“You possibly can’t have all that keenness and not have some of the headaches that come with it,” he defined. “It is a bit of different in Cleveland as a result of it is extra just baseball, which I enjoy.”

Copyright 2013 by The Related Press

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Obama Talks about the redskins

WASHINGTON – President Barack Obama says he would “think about altering” the Washington Redskins’ identify if he owned the soccer group as he waded into the controversy involving a word many contemplate offensive to Native Americans.

Obama, in an interview with The Related Press, mentioned crew names such because the Redskins offend “a sizable group of people.” He mentioned that whereas followers get connected to the names, nostalgia might not be a adequate cause to keep them in place.

“I do not know whether our attachment to a selected title ought to override the actual reputable issues that folks have about these items,” he said in the interview, which was conducted Friday on the White Home.

An avid sports fan who roots for his hometown Chicago Bears, Obama mentioned he does not assume Washington soccer followers are purposely making an attempt to offend American Indians.

“I don’t wish to detract from the great Redskins fans which are right here. They love their team and rightly so,” he mentioned.

ObamaI do not know whether our attachment to a specific identify should override the true legit concerns that folks have about these items.

- President Barack Obama on ‘Redskins’

But he appeared to come down on the side of those that have sharply criticized the soccer group’s name, noting that Native Individuals “feel pretty strongly” about mascots and team names that depict negative stereotypes about their heritage.

The staff’s owner, Dan Snyder, has vowed to by no means abandon the title.

NFL commissioner Roger Goodell said last month that the league ought to take note of those offended by the name – a delicate change in position for Goodell, who had more strongly supported the identify in his earlier statements this yr.

Lanny J. Davis, an lawyer for the Redskins, stated the workforce’s fans don’t intend to “disparage or disrespect” anybody.

“The title ‘Washington Redskins’ is 80 years outdated. It is our historical past and legacy and custom,” Davis mentioned in an emailed assertion wherein he also recognized himself as an Obama supporter. “We Redskins fans sing ‘Hail to the Redskins’ every Sunday as a word of honor, not disparagement.”

Different skilled sports teams have Indian names, together with football’s Kansas Metropolis Chiefs and baseball’s Atlanta Braves and Cleveland Indians. Davis referred to followers of these groups and hockey’s Chicago Blackhawks in his assertion, saying Redskins followers “love our group and its name and, like these followers, we don’t intend to disparage or disrespect a racial or ethnic group.”

Numerous schools and universities have changed names that reference Native People. St. John’s modified its mascot from the Redmen to the Crimson Storm, Marquette is now the Golden Eagles as a substitute of the Warriors and Stanford switched from the Indians to the Cardinal.

The Redskins’ title has attracted a contemporary round of controversy in current months, with native leaders in Washington calling for a name change and a few media shops refraining from using the identify. The name is the topic of an extended-operating authorized challenge from a gaggle of American Indians in search of to dam the staff from having federal trademark safety.

Congressional lawmakers have introduced a invoice seeking the identical goal, although it appears unlikely to pass.

“What a prudent and smart use of the bully pulpit,” Suzan Shown Harjo, a plaintiff in that case, said in an interview Saturday. “I’m so glad that he said that and I hope that folks hear a reasoned response from the president and will take note of this subject.”

Harjo mentioned the problem “entails a number of harm and pain and ongoing identify-calling and bullying of our youngsters that goes with this title. We simply need to have an finish to it.”

“There isn’t any such thing as a good stereotype, irrespective of how well-intentioned, regardless of how good people really feel about it,” Harjo added. “It still has negative ramifications for our people.”

“These are relics of the previous. They need to be consigned to museums and history books and other people can be ok with them there,” she mentioned. “However they shouldn’t be allowed in well mannered society.”

Opponents of the Redskins identify plan to hold a symposium Monday on the Washington hotel internet hosting the NFL’s fall assembly.

“We really appreciate the president underscoring what we’ve been saying,” mentioned Ray Halbritter, chief of the Oneida Indian Nation, a tribe from upstate New York that is been campaigning towards the name. “There’s simply no place for knowledgeable soccer workforce to be using what the dictionary defines as a racially offensive time period.”

Halbritter mentioned the NFL and Snyder could “borrow a page from the president” and use a call to change the group’s identify as a “teachable moment.”

Despite the controversy, an AP-GfK ballot carried out in April confirmed that, nationally, “Redskins” nonetheless enjoys broad support. Almost 4 in five People do not assume the staff should change its name, the survey discovered. Solely 11 percent think it must be modified, while eight p.c weren’t positive and a pair of p.c didn’t reply.

Obama said he would not have a direct stake within the Redskins debate since he isn’t a staff owner. However he hinted that may be a part of his submit-White House plans.

“Perhaps after I leave the presidency,” he joked. “I feel it would be numerous enjoyable.”

“I might probably take a look at a basketball group earlier than I looked at a soccer workforce,” stated Obama, who plays basketball in his spare time, has coached his daughter’s basketball staff and is a fan of the NBA’s Chicago Bulls. “I do know more about basketball than I do about football.”

 

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AL Wild-Card Game Recap- Rays vs. Indians

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AL Wild-Card Game Recap- Rays vs. Indians

The Tampa Bay Rays had another must-have win on the road game starring them in the face again. This time against the Cleveland Indians on Wednesday night… and once again, the Tampa Bay Rays were the better team as they shutout the Indians 4-0 to advance to the American League Division Series starting Friday in Boston. The Rays have played three cities over four games for their right to advance, while the AL East champion Boston Red Sox, well rested, have not played since last Sunday.

 

Rays pitcher Alex Cobb went nearly seven innings, picking up the victory. Cobb did struggle to get out of jams in the fourth, five, and seventh innings before turning the ball over to the bullpen, who shut the door on the Indians the rest of the way.

 

Rays Delmon Young hit a home run in the third inning off Indians’ rookie pitcher Danny Salazar, and that was all they needed.

 

Cleveland had their chances throughout the game to score runs, loading the bases in the fourth inning, and put two on in the fifth, but could not deliver the big hit to make a game of it. The Indians’ one through three hitters… Bourn, Swisher, and Kipnis went a combined 0-12 in the game.

 

The Cleveland Indians finished the season with 92 wins under first year manager Terry Francona. It was their first postseason appearance since 2007.

 

The Boston Red Sox went 12-7 against the Rays this season. They will host the first two ALDS games, and the Rays, who have been on the road for nearly two weeks, will not play another home game until Monday night.
Sportsbetting
 

By Mario Martinez-WonderPunter

 

 

 

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AL Wild Card Preview- Tampa Bay Rays vs. Cleveland Indians

Chicago White Sox v Cleveland Indians

Wild Card Preview

Game 1 Tampa Bay Rays (92- 71) @ Cleveland Indians (92-70) 10/2 8:07PM EST

 

On Wednesday night in Cleveland, the much traveled Tampa Bay Rays will play yet another road game against the Indians for the right to move on, and go on the road again to square off against the Boston Red Sox on Friday. The Rays have traveled 3,627 miles within the last week, going from Tampa to New York, Toronto, Texas, and now Cleveland. If they win Wednesday night… Boston.

 

The Rays have earned a wild-card spot three out of the last four years, while the Indians will be making their first playoff appearance since 2007.

 

The Rays feel they are battle tested, as they fought in every ballgame over the last week to earn a shot at a wild-card. Rays skipper Joe Maddon says “I’ll tell you what… we’ve played this wild-card game a couple times. We did it in Toronto a couple days ago. We did it yesterday in Texas, and we’re going to come here tomorrow and do it again. I don’t know if there’s a battle- tested component to that, if you get immune to whatever that pressure is and you go play.”

 

The Indians as well had to claw their way into a wild-card spot, by winning their last 10 straight ballgames for the right to host the win-or-go-home-game Wednesday night. Cleveland has not won a World Series title in 65 years. Indian manager Terry Francona would love nothing more to take his Indians into Boston to face his former team who he won two World Series Championships with, and was fired last year.

 

The Rays and Indians met six times during the year, with Tampa Bay winning four games… however, this will be the first meeting since early June.

Pitching for the Rays will be Alex Cobb (11-3) 2.76 ERA. For the Indians, rookie Danny Salazar (2-3) 3.12 ERA will be on the hill.

 

Both teams feel very confident to be able to get the job done and advance to the divisional series versus Boston on Friday night. The Rays being road tested, and the Indians riding a 10 game win streak. I expect a great game Wednesday night.
BetOnline
 By Mario Martinez WonderPunter

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Rays, Rangers force AL wild-card tiebreaker

The Texas Rangers have added game No. 163 to the regular-season schedule.

Beating the Angels 6-2 for his or her seventh win in a row Sunday afternoon, the Rangers compelled a one-sport tiebreaker with the Tampa Bay Rays for the second AL wild-card spot. The Rays beat Toronto 7-6 earlier Sunday.

The Indians, who closed the regular season on a ten-recreation win streak, clinched the primary wild-card berth.

The Rangers will host Tampa Bay on Monday evening. The winner performs two days later at Cleveland in another win-or-be-done match-up.

Monday, the Rays will give the ball to left-hander David Price (9-eight), while Texas starts left-hander Martin Perez (10-5).

Worth referred to as it the type of situation he dreamed about as somewhat kid.

“Fingers down my largest sport of this year, evening and day greater than Opening Day,” he said. “This is a second that I wish to be in. I need to be able to relish this second and go on the market and have enjoyable.”

Whoever emerges because the wild-card winner will then face AL chief Boston.

Info from The Associated Press was used in this report.

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Wedge tells Mariners he won’t be back in ’14

SEATTLE – Eric Wedge instructed the Seattle Mariners on Friday that he won’t return as supervisor next season, saying it grew to become obvious he didn’t have a future with the organization.

Wedge will manage the final three video games of this season in opposition to Oakland earlier than the Mariners begin a search for a brand new manager.

“It’s obtained to the point the place it’s painfully obvious to me that I just wasn’t going to be able to move forward with this organization,” Wedge stated before Friday’s sport. “We see things in another way and we talked about it but it simply acquired to the purpose the place I could not continue to move forward. In the end, I did not feel like I may continue to manage right here with the circumstances the way in which they’re.”

Wedge was introduced in to exchange Don Wakamatsu – who was fired through the 2010 season – because of the observe record he in-built Cleveland, taking the Indians through a rebuilding process and practically main them to the World Sequence. However the rebuilding by no means seemed to end in Seattle where there was a continuing influx of young prospects and a few veterans failing to fulfill expectations.

Seattle, which has by no means reached the World Series, entered the final weekend 70-89, assured of its fourth straight losing season. Normal manager Jack Zduriencik said the club had each intention of bringing Wedge again for 2014.

“I used to be looking forward to having Eric again however by means of his series of thought processes he determined that this wasn’t going to work,” Zduriencik said.

Wedge indicated the workforce had approached him last offseason about a one-year extension however he did not feel that was a “correct endorsement” when trying to rebuild a staff. Wedge complained this week that he felt he was left “hanging out there” by the group on his standing for subsequent yr.

“I didn’t feel like that sent the precise message to the players first and foremost and then ultimately the fans, too,” Wedge mentioned. “In the end, that endorsement simply wasn’t there for me.”

Zduriencik deliberate to fulfill with Wedge on Monday to debate the long run before Wedge requested the earlier meeting Friday morning.

“I thought there weren’t any issues that weren’t workable, at least from my standpoint,” Zduriencik stated.

Zduriencik felt the variations Wedge spoke about have been largely centered around the standing of his contract.

Wedge nonetheless believes the organization is on the right track and acknowledged again Friday he had needed to see the rebuilding course of by means of to its conclusion.

“We have some kids out right here who are going to be good huge-league ball players for the Seattle Mariners,” Wedge mentioned. “My belief in these youngsters and what I imagine they will do has by no means wavered.”

In the end, Wedge did not really feel he was getting the necessary help from the organization to continue in his position as manager.

“It is disappointing. It is irritating,” Wedge mentioned. “It is upsetting but generally folks just do not see things the same means and issues just do not work out. It isn’t for lack of attempting. I needed it to work. It’s simply not going to.”

Seattle was 212-271 with Wedge in cost getting into Friday night. He was the seventh supervisor – or interim manager – for the club since Lou Piniella left after the 2002 season.

Seattle was on the fringes of competition in July, successful eight straight games, when Wedge had a minor stroke.

He was helped off the field throughout batting follow on July 22 and was taken to a hospital. He was identified with a mild stroke the following day and began a monthlong restoration that called for changes in his food regimen, exercise and coping with the stress of his occupation. Robby Thompson stuffed in while Wedge was out.

Wedge said his determination was not well being associated.

Copyright 2013 by The Associated Press

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Yankees miss playoffs for 2nd time in 19 years

THE BIG APPLE – The New York Yankees did not make the playoffs for under the second time in 19 years, getting mathematically eradicated Wednesday evening earlier than an 8-three loss to the Tampa Bay Rays.

Hobbled by age and harm, the Yankees (eighty two-seventy six) have been trailing 7-3 in the eighth inning once they had been knocked out as the Cleveland Indians accomplished a 7-2 win over the Chicago White Sox. There was no response from the Yankee Stadium crowd when the Indians end result was posted on the scoreboard.

Brendan Ryan, Robinson Cano, Mark ReynoldsAP Photo/Kathy WillensA long evening capped a long season for Robinson Cano and the Yankees, who had been formally eliminated from playoff competition with Cleveland’s win against the White Sox.

Regardless of baseball’s highest opening-day payroll at $230 million, the Yankees failed to assert one of the 10 playoff berths.

Since beginning the latest run of success in 1995, New York had missed the playoffs solely in 2008 – when the group bid goodbye to previous Yankee Stadium. This time, the Yankees are saying goodbye to Mariano Rivera and Andy Pettitte, who are retiring when the season ends Sunday.

“We did not get to the place we wanted to get,” manager Joe Girardi said after it was finished.

“It is extremely disappointing, and again to the drafting board. It hurts.”

Since starting the latest run of success in 1995, New York had missed the playoffs solely in 2008 – when the group bid goodbye to old Yankee Stadium.

Earlier than a quiet crowd of 37,260, the Yankees lost for the eighth time in 11 games and were eradicated from contention for a playoff berth on their very own subject for the first time since 1991.

Fans figure to be more exuberant throughout Thursday evening’s house finale, when Rivera will make his last Yankee Stadium appearance.

“I’ll be there for the fans. They deserve it,” the 43-year-outdated said. “But it do not imply anything. I am not used to pitching for something that doesn’t mean anything. I needed to pitch for one thing that means something.

“It’s disappointing. Can’t do anything about it now. It’s carried out. It is disappointing. We fought onerous the entire yr and we fell brief.”

Phil Hughes (four-14) allowed three runs and 7 hits in two innings-plus Wednesday night, strolling slowly to the dugout and searching up to the stands when he was removed from what doubtless was his final begin with the Yankees.

“Just a robust approach to end issues right here – not making the postseason,” Hughes mentioned.

A key part of the Yankees’ 2009 title group as a reliever, Hughes went 0-7 with a 6.09 ERA in thirteen begins since beating Minnesota on July 2. He is eligible without spending a dime company after the World Collection.

“Plenty of good times. Lots of dangerous times, I guess,” he said. “That is the best way life is sometimes.”

Joba Chamberlain, additionally eligible free of charge company, didn’t even await mathematical elimination to organize for his departure. Before batting practice, he began placing his locker belongings into a large box.

New York started the season 30-18 and was in first place on the morning of Could 26, but the solid begin was not sufficient to beat accidents to four All-Star regulars: shortstop Derek Jeter, third baseman Alex Rodriguez, first baseman Mark Teixeira and center fielder Curtis Granderson.

Hobbled by the ankle he broke in final yr’s AL Championship Series opener, Jeter did not make his season debut till proper earlier than the All-Star break and wound up playing simply 17 video games due to recurring leg injuries.

Teixeira, who injured a hand while with the U.S. workforce at World Baseball Basic, performed in just 15 games and wanted season-ending surgery. Rodriguez, getting back from hip surgery, and Granderson, who broke a forearm and pinkie when hit by pitches, every played about one-third of the season.

In all, the Yankees had a major league-main 28 stints on the disabled checklist by 21 completely different players, in response to STATS, and have missed 1,461 days – more than 4 years’ value.

New York’s house runs dropped from a staff-report 245 final 12 months to 143 this season – on tempo to be the Yankees’ fewest in a non-strike season since 1989. The departure of free brokers Raul Ibanez, Nick Swisher, Russell Martin and Eric Chavez contributed to the ability outage.

“It is a really sad feeling,” said Robinson Cano, the All-Star second baseman who figures to secure a 9-determine contract this offseason. “The fun part of this recreation is playoffs. I am really sad right now, and it is going to stick in my head, in my thoughts, until next season.”

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Four things you need to know about baseball’s postseason picture

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Note: We’re counting down the ultimate days of the MLB regular season — four extra — and each day we’re providing you with an inventory of vital speaking factors in regards to the postseason image, which is getting more thrilling by the day.

1. The AL Wild Card is what to watch for Thursday (and this weekend, actually): All three teams in competition for the AL Wild Card are taking part in Thursday night time, and they’re all streaking. The Tampa Bay Rays and Cleveland Indians have both won six video games in a row and the Texas Rangers have won three in a row. Speaking about being targeted down the stretch.

The Rays and Indians hold the Wild Cards proper now, with the Rangers a game behind the Indians. The Rangers play the Los Angeles Angels on Thursday, who simply took two straight from the AL West-successful Oakland A’s. If Texas can beat the Angels and the Indians lose to the Minnesota Twins, we’ll have a tie again. But with 4 games left for all three Wild Card contenders, things are nonetheless very fluid. 

2. The Royals are out: Properly, Royals, it was enjoyable. We loved your plight, the entire first-playoff-appearance since 1985 thing. We favored the man with the belly too. Effectively, it was enjoyable prefer it lasted. Possibly subsequent year. Bye, Royals.

(Getty Images) 3. The only division that needs a champion is the NL Central: With the Tigers clinching the AL Central on Wednesday night time, their NL counterpart is the one division with out a champ. The Cincinnati Reds are out of the division hunt now. The Pittsburgh Pirates are three behind the St. Louis Cardinals with three games left to play. Duh, duh, duh. Neither workforce plays on Thursday, by the way in which.

four. If the playoffs began at present: The bracket under shows how things would look.

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Six things you need to know about baseball’s postseason picture

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After Monday’s video games, seven of the ten teams that can take part in the MLB postseason are locked in. The

puzzle

is almost complete. But with six days of baseball left within the regular season, there are nonetheless some essential things that must be decided.

As we speak, we offer up six things that you simply, the reader, have to know about baseball’s postseason image. On Wednesday, we’ll give you 5. And so forth.

1. The Nationwide League groups are set. The hierarchy of them isn’t. Monday’s wild evening within the NL Central confirmed that the Pittsburgh Pirates and Cincinnati Reds are within the postseason. They will each still attempt to unseat the St. Louis Cardinals for the NL Central title. St Louis has a two-sport lead. If neither can, the Pirates and Reds will meet within the Wild Card sport. House-discipline advantage in that single-elimination game is still up for grabs too. The Braves and Dodgers are the other NL playoff teams, with the Braves at the moment owning the most effective report within the NL and home-field benefit.

2. The Detroit Tigers will be the next group to clinch a postseason berth. It’s form of bizarre that the Pirates have sewn up their postseason spot and the Tigers aren’t formally in but. However they are going to be. As quickly, maybe, as Tuesday. The Tigers can clinch the AL Central with a win against the Minnesota Twins AND a Cleveland Indians loss. If the Tigers win, they clinch just a postseason berth. Detroit additionally clinches a postseason berth with a Texas Rangers loss.

3. One of the best race left is the AL Wild Card

. Apart from the NL Central teams jockeying for place, that is the really crucial thing that wants deciding. Going into Tuesday’s video games, the

Tampa Bay Rays

and Cleveland Indians have the Wild Card spots. The Rays have a one-game lead over the Indians. And the Indians have a one-recreation lead over the Texas Rangers. The Royals are three video games again. And the Yankees

4. It’s just about a wrap for the Baltimore Orioles. Their un-magic number (i.e. their elimination quantity) is 2. However Monday certain felt just like the the tip for Baltimore. They lost Manny Machado to harm and then lost their recreation through a pinch-hit, stroll-off homer. Ouch. Whereas the Orioles are technically alive, Fangraphs places their playoff odds at zero.00%. So.. Houston Astros TV scores? Word.

5. Talking of the Astros. They’re actually relevant to this postseason dialog. Their final five games are towards two contenders — the Texas Rangers, who wish to catch the Indians, then the New York Yankees, who might have very properly fallen to a fiery doom earlier than visiting Houston this weekend. Level is, the Astros could be a doormat to the postseason. Fitting, is not it? The Indians, meanwhile, have six games left against two not-so-good teams: the White Sox and Twins

6. The A’s could catch the Red Sox. And by that, we mean for the most effective document within the American League and thusly, residence-area advantage throughout the AL side of the playoff bracket. The A’s are 94-sixty three while the Pink Sox are ninety five-62. The A’s play the Angels on Tuesday and the Pink Sox play the Rockies.

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Tigers’ Jhonny Peralta tries left field in instructional league

(Getty)

Usually an infielder and primarily a shortstop throughout his 10-plus seasons in the majors, Jhonny Peralta wants to search out another place if he is to help the Detroit Tigers any more in 2013.

Recently returned from a 50-recreation PED suspension related to the Biogenesis investigation, Peralta is heading to the educational league in Florida as a way to learn to play left field. The Tigers have a necessity there, unlike at shortstop, where Jose Iglesias is doing simply positive.

The plan, manager Jim Leyland and GM Dave Dombrowski say via Lynn Henning of the Detroit News, is for Peralta to play in Florida till the final weekend series of the common season. Presumably, if all goes well, Peralta would get a glance in left and provides Leyland the option of playing him there within the postseason. The Tigers lead the AL Central by five games over the Cleveland Indians.

Peralta has been taking batting practice and figuring out with the Tigers since Wednesday, but he is not going to take time away from Miguel Cabrera at third (even though Cabrera may use the day off to heal up) and Iglesias is just too good defensively at quick to replace. Victor Martinez usually performs DH. No room there.

Leyland, although, was inspired by what he saw upon Peralta’s return:

But, Leyland provides, 50 video games is a lot to miss. And two weeks isn’t a number of time to study a brand new place.

Peralta has logged practically 10,000 innings at short since breaking in with the Indians in 2003, but none in the outfield. Andy Dirks and Matt Tuiasosopo often platoon in left, which has been a weak spot offensively and defensively when compared to Austin Jackson in heart and Torii Hunter in proper.

Peralta in all probability can be an journey in the outfield, but theoretically he’d be a significantly better bat in opposition to lefties than Dirks or Tuiasosopo. None of them are supreme.

(Getty)

An All-Star in July as he was two seasons in the past, Peralta was having one among his best seasons —305/.361/.461 with eleven homers and 29 doubles 436 plate appearances — before his suspension. When it grew to become apparent that he’d miss an enormous chunk of time, the Tigers traded for Iglesias and improved their protection nearly immeasurably at brief.

As for what happens to Peralta in left subject, it is value a shot, presumably. Dirks and Tuiasosopo aren’t so good that they obviously should play as a substitute, and Peralta couldn’t be worse out there than Delmon Younger.. by a lot. It additionally sets up a potential “atonement” narrative for Peralta, who — it may very well be said — let his workforce down by getting caught doing PEDs.

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BIG series: How’s this for wild? The Royals and Indians battle to keep their postseason hopes alive

(Getty Pictures)

As the pennant races warmth up, Big League Stew takes a closer take a look at some of the largest sequence down the stretch.

Cleveland Indians at Kansas City Royals

SITUATION: It’s mid-September and the Cleveland Indians and Kansas City Royals are both playoff contenders within the American League. That alone is kind of a narrative. They meet for a 3-recreation collection starting Monday in Kansas Metropolis with loads of playoff implications.

The Indians (eighty one-sixty eight) and the Royals (78-seventy one) are each within the working for the AL Wild Card, with Cleveland just a half game out and Kansas Metropolis three half of games out. It might be the first playoff berth for the Royals since 1985 and the primary for the Indians since 2007. Each were I-assume-I-can teams coming into this season, neither looking robust sufficient to high the Tigers in the AL Central, however both with sufficient promise to shock some people.

And right here they’re, still in it with two weeks left. Each groups have confirmed streaky this season, but they’ve been profitable to this point in September. The Royals are 9-5 while the Indians are 10-4. The Indians are a lot nearer to sliding right into a Wild Card spot, but either staff nonetheless has a shot within the very tight AL Wild Card race.

(Getty Photos)

PREVIOUSLY: Cleveland leads the season collection 9-7, however the Royals took two of three once they met final week in Cleveland.

PITCHERS:
Monday: Scott Kazmir (eight-8, four.24 ERA) vs. James Shields (11-9, three.38 ERA)
Tuesday: Corey Kluber (9-5, three.55) vs. Yordano Ventura (zero-0, -.– PERIOD)
Wednesday: Danny Salazar (1-2, 2.sixty six ERA) vs. Bruce Chen (7-three, 3.11 PERIOD)

STORYLINES TO LOOK AT:
Will either team acquire some traction in the wild card race? The Texas Rangers and the Tampa Bay Rays would the be AL Wild Card teams if the regular season ended as we speak. They’re taking part in a series towards each other right now too, so the entire AL Wild Card race could possibly be turned upside by down by Thursday. The Rangers, losers of six straight coming into Monday, are giving each different contender within the AL an opportunity to catch them. Cleveland, with a powerful displaying here and an assist from Tampa Bay, could transfer right into a playoff spot shortly. Then again, if the Royals can muster a sweep, that might dramatically help their postseason chances.

How will the young pitchers do? They are not going through one another, however each the Royals and Indians are putting their young weapons on the mound. Kansas City is giving prime pitching prospect Yordano Ventura his first profession begin on Tuesday, subbing for the injured Danny Duffy. Ventura is 22 and can hit 100 mph on the radar gun. The Indians, meanwhile, call Danny Salazar to the mound Wednesday. He is 23 and made his MLB debut in July. This will likely be his ninth start. He can hit 99 mph.

How a lot momentum will the Indians have? After these two groups finished a collection in Cleveland final week, the Indians swept the White Sox in 4 games, while the Royals misplaced two of three in Detroit. Each groups traveled into Kansas City, but the Indians finished their Sunday recreation late after a 4-hour rain delay. Momentum vs. a long day on Sunday? We’ll see.