DeGrom outpitches Kershaw as Mets top Dodgers, 3-1

Sports / Baseball /

LOS ANGELES--This time around, there was no soul-crushing meltdown for Clayton Kershaw.

If anything, Kershaw pitched well in the Los Angeles Dodgers' postseason opener Friday night. In some moments, he was even extraodinary.

Jacob deGrom just happened to pitch better.

And so the Dodgers were defeated in their home stadium by the New York Mets...Read more

Cardinals take Game 1 of NLDS with 4-0 win over Cubs

Sports / Baseball /

ST. LOUIS -- On the first postseason meeting between the Cubs and the Cardinals in 123 years of the rivalry, pitchers John Lackey and Jon Lester provided a duel worthy of the occasion.

The Cardinals provided enough offense to give Lackey the victory.

Lackey, a 36-year-old veteran of 22 playoff appearances, pitched 71/3 shutout innings to help ...Read more

Lackey, rookies lead Cardinals to 4-0 victory over Cubs

Sports / Baseball /

ST. LOUIS -- The Cardinals threw a bit of the old and new at the Chicago Cubs on Friday at Busch Stadium, welcoming their rivals back into the playoffs with a 4-0 win in Game 1 of the National League Division Series.

Fifteen-year veteran John Lackey allowed two hits in 7 1/3 shutout innings, and rookies Tommy Pham and Stephen Piscotty hit home ...Read more

Rangers beat Blue Jays again to take 2-0 series lead

Sports / Baseball /

TORONTO -- Shawn Tolleson and Ross Ohlendorf were at the center of the biggest gut punch the Texas Rangers have endured in 2015.

On Friday afternoon at the Rogers Centre, they were at the center of the season's biggest win as the Rangers held off the Blue Jays 6-4 in 14 innings.

Neither had pitched since taking the brunt of a five-run, ninth-...Read more

Rangers hope Beltre can be ready for Game 3

Sports / Baseball /

TORONTO -- Third baseman Adrian Beltre was out of the Texas Rangers' starting lineup Friday for Game 2 of the American League Division Series, but the club said that his lower-back strain was showing signs of improvement.

Beltre did not take batting practice and was seen only briefly outside the Rangers' clubhouse before the game. Hanser ...Read more

Escobar, Zobrist help lift Royals over Astros, 5-4

Sports / Baseball /

KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- The baseball hung in the sky, floating like a horsehide-covered offering to the Baseball Gods who had been so cruel to the Royals for the first 15 innings of the American League Division Series.

Ned Yost often jokes about the talismanic powers of Alcides Escobar as their leadoff hitter, but in the seventh inning of a series-...Read more

McClendon will not return as Mariners manager

Sports / Baseball /

The offseason of change continues for the Mariners.

Lloyd McClendon won't return as manager for the 2016 season.

The Mariners, based on the decision of new general manager Jerry Dipoto, announced Friday it has decided to part ways with McClendon after two seasons. A large portion of McClendon's coaching staff was let go or reassigned.

"I just...Read more

Differences add up for Dodgers

Sports / Baseball /

LOS ANGELES--The way Don Mattingly tells it, this season was considerably easier for him than the last. This particular group of players, the Los Angeles Dodgers manager said, demonstrated a higher degree of professionalism.

"Our guys get ready to play," he said. "I never worried about them being ready to play. I could trust them. They got down...Read more

Mets thirst for success after nine-year drought

Sports / Baseball /

LOS ANGELES--The Los Angeles Dodgers can only hope there is no play as comical Friday as there was the last time they opened a postseason series against the New York Mets.

In the first game of the 2006 division series, the Dodgers had Jeff Kent and J.D. Drew thrown out at home plate -- on the same play.

"We spent the whole season in L.A., so ...Read more

Astros top Royals in ALDS opener, 5-2

Sports / Baseball /

KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Silence no longer suits Kauffman Stadium, not after the Kansas City exorcism of the 2014 playoffs and the seasonlong euphoria of 2015. This ballpark saw the Royals raise a pennant last year and raise a division title last month. Yet silence, the collective stifling of more than 40,000 voices ready to roar during Game 1 of the...Read more

Cubs believe they are cusp of eclipsing Cardinals' division dominance

Sports / Baseball /

ST. LOUIS -- With confidence built from a nine-game winning streak after they blew away a dark cloud in September by earning four victories in their last six games against the rival Cardinals, the Cubs sense that their goal of seizing control of the National League Central is attainable.

"Of course we're ready for some kind of a changing of the...Read more

Rangers stray from script to top Blue Jays in Game 1

Sports / Baseball /

TORONTO -- Game 1 of the American League Division Series was won Thursday by the Texas Rangers, just as everyone expected.

Yeah, right.

The Rangers did beat the Toronto Blue Jays, 5-3, with home runs from the bottom two hitters in their lineup, with five more quality innings against the Blue Jays by Yovani Gallardo, with Sam Dyson acting as ...Read more

Cubs-Cardinals 2015 series recaps

Sports / Baseball /

The Cardinals have the season-series edge 11-8, but the Cubs won four of six games in September.

At Cubs, April 5, 7-8: split 1-1, 1 rained out.

The Cardinals spoiled Opening Day at Wrigley Field, scoring three runs on eight hits off the Cubs' new $155 million pitcher Jon Lester on the way to a 3-0 triumph. Adam Wainwright earned one of his ...Read more

Yoenis Cespedes' Mets magic echoes Manny Ramirez's '08 run with Dodgers

Sports / Baseball /

NEW YORK -- The team is fighting to stay above .500, but still within striking distance of first place. On the last day of July -- thanks to a stroke of great fortune -- the team adds a big bat in the outfield.

The bat goes crazy. The team goes crazy. The fans go crazy. The season ends not with a disappointing whimper, but with a postseason ...Read more

Dodgers' Clayton Kershaw and Zack Greinke dominate in entirely different ways

Sports / Baseball /

LOS ANGELES--As Tommy Lasorda reflected on the regular season recently completed by Clayton Kershaw and Zack Greinke, he did something unexpected.

The former Dodgers manager compared them to Sandy Koufax and Don Drysdale.

Lasorda generally loathes cross-generational comparisons of pitchers. He once complained about a story that ran in this ...Read more

Tigers will pursue two starting pitchers in offseason

Sports / Baseball /

It was the obvious answer, so Al Avila got it out of the way.

At the tail end of his opening statements before a season-ending luncheon with reporters Thursday afternoon at Comerica Park, the Detroit Tigers' vice president and general manager outlined his approach to the offseason, saying simply, "Our biggest need going into the offseason is ...Read more

Rangers lose Beltre early in Game 1 due to back stiffness

Sports / Baseball /

TORONTO -- Adrian Beltre had to leave Game 1 of the American League Division Series after the third inning because of stiffness in his lower back, leaving the Texas Rangers with rookie utility man Hanser Alberto at third base.

Beltre was injured in the first inning while sliding into second base while trying to break up a double play. He stayed...Read more

It's clutch time: A (possibly meaningless) comparison of Dodgers and Mets

Sports / Baseball /

LOS ANGELES -- There are certain topics in baseball that elicit visceral disagreement and spirited debate.

Whether certain players perform better under pressure -- they're called "clutch" players -- actually exist is one of them.

An article on the topic published by the Society for American Baseball Research called clutch performance "a ...Read more

Mets' Collins brings closure to Angels fiasco

Sports / Baseball /

NEW YORK -- The two men said hello. They sat down to catch up. As the conversation extended beyond half an hour, beyond an hour, through a second hour, it was clear that this was no ordinary conversation.

This was an apology, and a purging of the soul.

The reunion was amicable. The parting a decade earlier most certainly was not.

The older ...Read more

In playoffs, Dodgers' Justin Turner to meet team that took a pass on him

Sports / Baseball /

NEW YORK -- Justin Turner could bat cleanup, in the playoffs, for the team that can afford to buy the greatest players the game has to offer, against the team that did not consider him worthy of a major league roster spot.

That's a pretty good story, but nowhere near as dramatic as the one that sent him scurrying to his computer to try to ...Read more