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Last Build Date: Sat, 24 Sep 2016 09:54:00 PDT

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Week That Was: Desert Drama (Rotoworld)

Sat, 24 Sep 2016 09:54:00 PDT

Arizona's rocky rotation took another hit. Get caught up on all of the week's most important news in our rundown.



Baseball-Highlights from MLB games on Friday (Reuters)

Fri, 23 Sep 2016 23:40:00 PDT

Highlights from Major League Baseball games on Friday: Cubs 5, Cardinals 0 Jake Arrieta's goal may be perfection but he realizes he can occasionally ease up and still have good outcomes. Arrieta (18-7) scattered five hits in a seven-inning shutout effort as the Chicago Cubs beat the St. Louis Cardinals at Wrigley Field. Chicago (98-55) topped last year's 97-win total and matched the most victories by any Cubs team since 1945 with its fourth straight in the opener of a three-game weekend series.



Indians host White Sox in "bullpen" game (The Associated Press)

Fri, 23 Sep 2016 21:17:58 PDT

The Cleveland Indians are close to clinching the Central Division title, but are also trying to piece together their injury-riddled starting rotation to get them through the remainder of the regular season. The pitching matchup will be Cody Anderson (2-4, 6.24 ERA) for the Indians and Jose Quintana (12-11, 3.26) for the White Sox. Anderson is making a spot start in the Indians' makeshift rotation.



Rangers clinch AL West despite shockingly small run differential (Big League Stew)

Fri, 23 Sep 2016 20:57:11 PDT

The best team in the American League West resides in north Texas. The Texas Rangers are division champions for the second straight season — and the fourth time since 2010 — after dispatching the A’s 3-0 in Oakland. Cole Hamels pitched seven scoreless innings in the clincher, striking out six.



Ramirez has big night; Indians move closer to Central title (The Associated Press)

Fri, 23 Sep 2016 20:34:46 PDT

The anticipation of their first division championship since 2007 is building for the Cleveland Indians. Jose Ramirez hit a two-run homer and drove in four runs and the Indians dropped their magic number for clinching an AL Central title to three games with a 10-4 win over the Chicago White Sox on Friday night. ''Now that it's here there's a lot of excitement that surrounds it,'' said winning pitcher Trevor Bauer.



LEADING OFF: Cubs can clinch home-field; misfortunate Mets (The Associated Press)

Fri, 23 Sep 2016 00:39:33 PDT

The Cubs can clinch home-field advantage for the postseason with a win over the Cardinals and a loss by the Nationals. ''I think pressure is what you make of it,'' said Jon Lester , one of the front-runners for the NL Cy Young Award. The right-hander made a spot start Sunday when Jacob deGrom was scratched, and now he's had his turn moved up from Saturday to replace left-hander Steven Matz, who was scratched from his scheduled turn after experiencing renewed shoulder soreness.



Asdrubal Cabrera's clutch home run keeps Mets in NL wild-card spot (Big League Stew)

Thu, 22 Sep 2016 22:56:42 PDT

Asdrubal Cabrera knew it was gone as soon as he connected. Twice in this game it appeared the Mets were headed to a fourth straight loss, not ideal at a time when they’re trying to hold onto a wild-card spot in the National League. New York went to the plate in the home half of the ninth down 6-4 and Jose Reyes sent the game to extra innings with a two-run homer.



Baseball-Highlights from MLB games on Thursday (Reuters)

Thu, 22 Sep 2016 22:29:35 PDT

(Adds later games) Sept 22 (The Sports Xchange) - Highlights from Major League Baseball games on Thursday: Red Sox 5, Orioles 3 Andrew Benintendi lined a tiebreaking single in the fifth, Hanley Ramirez added a solo homer, and David Price threw seven solid innings as the Boston Red Sox completed a four-game sweep of the Baltimore Orioles. The Red Sox (89-64) improved their American League East lead over the idle Toronto Blue Jays to 5-1/2 games while Baltimore (82-71) fell seven games back and are in a tight battle with the Detroit Tigers and Houston Astros for the second AL wild card.



Santana's HR lifts Indians over KC, closer to Central title (The Associated Press)

Thu, 22 Sep 2016 21:08:19 PDT

Carlos Santana hit a three-run homer and saluted someone who hits 3s routinely. Santana's homer in the sixth inning pushed the Cleveland Indians to a 5-2 win over the Kansas City Royals on Thursday night and closer to winning the AL Central for the first time since 2007. After rounding the bases, Santana crossed home plate and immediately pointed to one of the dugout suites.



Indians host White Sox with title in sight (The Associated Press)

Thu, 22 Sep 2016 20:38:49 PDT

The Cleveland Indians are on the verge of clinching their first American League Central title in nine years. The Chicago White Sox, meanwhile, are on the verge of completing their fourth straight losing season. The Indians, who are coming off a three-game sweep of Kansas City, are 89-63 and hold a seven-game lead over second place Detroit with 10 games to play.



Watch live: Indians vs. Royals in MLB Free Game of the Day (Big League Stew)

Thu, 22 Sep 2016 16:02:51 PDT

Like when Carlos Gomez homered against the team that released him, or Vin Scully ending his long career on the 80th anniversary of the day he fell in love with baseball. The Kansas City Royals and the Cleveland Indians lived their own baseball poetry on Wednesday night. The Royals, who won the 2015 AL Central and went on to triumph in the World Series, were eliminated from the divisional race by this year’s likely AL Central champs, the Indians.



Indians aiming for three-game sweep of Royals (The Associated Press)

Wed, 21 Sep 2016 23:09:28 PDT

The Cleveland Indians will attempt to complete a three-game sweep of the Kansas City Royals Thursday night, when the two teams meet for the final game of their three-game series. The Indians won Tuesday 2-1, and won 4-3 on Wednesday. Thursday's pitching matchup will be rookie right-hander Mike Clevinger (2-2, 4.76) for the Indians and Royals left-hander Jason Vargas (0-0, 3.00).



Blue Jays and Orioles lose critical games thanks to crushing errors (Big League Stew)

Wed, 21 Sep 2016 22:29:59 PDT

The atmosphere for this week’s Blue Jays-Mariners series at Safeco Field and Red Sox-Orioles at Camden Yards have been off the charts. Unfortunately, both games were also mostly decided by defensive blunders that knocked the wind out of the respective losing team as much as they raised the spirits of the winners. Beginning in Seattle, Aaron Sanchez and Felix Hernandez went toe-to-toe in a fantastic pitcher’s duel.



Baseball-Highlights of Wednesday's MLB games (Reuters)

Wed, 21 Sep 2016 22:26:06 PDT

(Adds final game) Sept 21 (The Sports Xchange) - Highlights of Major League Baseball games on Wednesday: Yankees 11, Rays 5 Red-hot Yankees catcher Gary Sanchez hit two more home runs, giving him five in his last four games, as New York rolled to an 11-5 win over the Tampa Bay Rays. New York jumped out to a 7-0 lead in the first two innings, then held off the Rays (64-87), who inched back with five solo home runs. Rockies 11, Cardinals 1 Nolan Arenado hit a grand slam as the Colorado Rockies piled on rookie starter Luke Weaver early and beat the St. Louis Cardinals 11-1.



Kluber's strong outing knocks Royals from AL Central race (The Associated Press)

Wed, 21 Sep 2016 21:05:23 PDT

Corey Kluber moved the Cleveland Indians one step closer to the AL Central title while eliminating the reigning World Series champions from the race. Kluber allowed two runs and struck out nine in 6 1/3 innings, and the Indians defeated the Kansas City Royals 4-3 on Wednesday night. The Indians, who lead Detroit by 7 1/2 games, reduced their magic number for clinching the Central to five.



Joseph, Eickhoff lead Phillies over White Sox (The Associated Press)

Wed, 21 Sep 2016 20:37:59 PDT

Whether the motivation came from within or from a challenge from his manager, Tommy Joseph certainly has responded. Joseph homered, doubled and drove in three runs Wednesday night, leading the Philadelphia Phillies over the Chicago White Sox 8-3. Earlier this month, Joseph was struggling and found himself on the bench.



Roundtable: Who can break MLB's no-hitter drought? (Big League Stew)

Wed, 21 Sep 2016 15:04:51 PDT

Here’s one of the statistical oddities that’s presenting itself now that the MLB season is coming to a close: This could be the season with the fewest no-hitters since 2006. There’s only been one this season, thrown by Jake Arrieta way back in April. Only Arrieta has been able to finish the deed, however, and now if the season closes with just one no-hitter it would be a quick about-face for what was becoming the no-hitter era.



Look to Philadelphia (Rotoworld)

Wed, 21 Sep 2016 10:32:00 PDT

Brad Johnson covers the latest closer and stolen base news with just 12 days left in the season.



LEADING OFF: Rangers can clinch, Red Sox seek 7th straight (The Associated Press)

Wed, 21 Sep 2016 01:55:43 PDT

A look at what's happening all around the majors today:



Baseball-Highlights from Tuesday's MLB games (Reuters)

Tue, 20 Sep 2016 23:34:03 PDT

(Adds late games) Sept 20 (The Sports Xchange) - Highlights from Major League Baseball games on Tuesday: Cardinals 10, Rockies 5 Adam Wainwright, who turned 35 three weeks ago, has shown his age this season and was not at his best, but more than made up for any mound shortcomings with his bat. Wainwright doubled home two runs in the third off Jorge De La Rosa and singled home two runs in the fifth off Eddie Butler. Wainwright (12-9) worked 5-1/3 innings, the third time in four starts he failed to reach the sixth.



Guess what? The Giants bullpen didn't blow it for once (Big League Stew)

Tue, 20 Sep 2016 23:31:03 PDT

When Johnny Cueto cringed on the mound and shook his head at the dugout, signaling he was hurt and done for the night, the San Francisco Giants had to be thinking the worst. This had all the makings of the horror movie the Giants have seen too many times this month and this season — the one where the S.F. bullpen just keeps on dying. No, the Giants bullpen did its job, holding on to the lead, which jumped to 2-0 after a ninth-inning insurance homer from Brandon Belt.



Kluber starts vs. Royals, lined up for Indians (The Associated Press)

Tue, 20 Sep 2016 21:48:55 PDT

Cy Young Award candidate Corey Kluber will start for the Cleveland Indians on Wednesday night in game two of their three-game series with the Kansas City Royals. Kluber will get two more starts after this one. How the Indians' starting rotation lines up for the postseason after Kluber's game one start is a topic of heavy conversation in Cleveland these days.



Tigers keep Kinsler, Martinez out following hit by pitches (The Associated Press)

Tue, 20 Sep 2016 21:34:58 PDT

The Detroit Tigers kept second baseman Ian Kinsler and designated hitter Victor Martinez out of the lineup on Tuesday night at Minnesota, with both injured when being hit by pitches in their previous game. Tigers manager Brad Ausmus said Kinsler still felt ''a little foggy'' two days after a beaning by Cleveland right-hander Trevor Bauer knocked his helmet off and triggered concussion-like symptoms. Martinez was also hit by Bauer in the same inning Sunday on the knee, which remained purple and swollen.



Guyer's pinch hit in 9th lifts Indians over Royals 2-1 (The Associated Press)

Tue, 20 Sep 2016 20:38:25 PDT

Brandon Guyer was playing for a last-place team until a trade Aug. 1. On Tuesday night, his first career game-ending hit moved his Cleveland Indians closer to their first AL Central title in nearly a decade. Guyer singled in a run with two outs in the ninth inning, lifting the Indians over the Kansas City Royals 2-1 to reduce Cleveland's magic number for the division to six.



Baseball-Major League Baseball roundup (Reuters)

Tue, 20 Sep 2016 16:04:06 PDT

Sept 20 (The Sports Xchange) - New York Mets left-hander Steven Matz could return in Friday's game against the Philadelphia Phillies. Matz has been out for about a month with a mild shoulder strain. He is scheduled to throw a bullpen session on Wednesday at Port St. Lucie, where the Mets are holding fall instructional league workouts. If he passes that test, Matz will get the start for the Mets on Friday. Matz is 9-8 with a 3.40 ERA this season. - - - On his second day in instructional league camp, Tim Tebow had the No. 1-selling jersey on MLB.com. ...



O's turn to Gausman to even series with Red Sox (The Associated Press)

Tue, 20 Sep 2016 00:43:31 PDT

Orioles manager Buck Showalter was asked Monday if he is beginning to think about a possible pitcher if Baltimore is involved in the American League wild-card playoff game. One change the Orioles did make with an eye toward the postseason had nothing do with the pitching rotation. Showalter said the team now plans to fly back to Baltimore after that game -- though of course it could end up flying to another city for a possible wild-card game.



Indians begin home stretch vs. Royals (The Associated Press)

Tue, 20 Sep 2016 00:20:24 PDT

After their last off day of the regular season Monday, the Cleveland Indians are ready for the sprint to the finish. The Indians will play 13 games in 13 days to finish the season, all of them against American League Central rivals: the Kansas City Royals, Chicago White Sox and Detroit Tigers. It starts Tuesday at Progressive Field with the first game of a three-game series against Kansas City.



Phillies' Herrera on rise entering White Sox series (The Associated Press)

Mon, 19 Sep 2016 23:29:57 PDT

Before a 10-game stretch against National League East division foes closes out the season, the Philadelphia Phillies first have to deal with their two final interleague games. The Chicago White Sox visit to end a nine-game home stand for the Phillies (67-83). Philadelphia is 4-3 during the stretch at Citizens Bank Park after a 5-4 loss to the Miami Marlins on Sunday.



Ventura posts 1st complete-game win, Royals beat White Sox (The Associated Press)

Mon, 19 Sep 2016 15:11:17 PDT

Yordano Ventura kept his pitch count down, which enabled him to go nine innings for the first time in the majors. Ventura picked up his first complete-game victory, Kendrys Morales hit a three-run homer and the Kansas City Royals defeated the Chicago White Sox 8-3 Monday. The Royals have won three straight, keeping their faint playoff hopes flickering with 12 games remaining.



Young fan gets Abraham Almonte's flying bat, and she loves it (Big League Stew)

Mon, 19 Sep 2016 08:55:12 PDT

The Indians were down by just one run until until the ninth inning, and then suddenly they were down four runs and couldn’t make a comeback. In the bottom of the second inning, Indians right fielder Abraham Almonte was batting against Tigers starter Daniel Norris.