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Karl Merton Ferron/The Baltimore Sun/TNS

Matthew Roberson: Buck Showalter has never taken over a team built to win now like these Mets

Sports / Baseball /

NEW YORK — As Buck Showalter readies himself for all things Mets, he does so with the luxury of having a pretty good roster already in place.

That has not always been the case for the salty old veteran, whose first seasons with the Yankees, Diamondbacks, Rangers and Orioles were hardly smooth sailing. However, unlike these expectation-laden ...Read more

Matt Freed/Pittsburgh Post-Gazette/TNS

Carlos Monarrez: Why I disagree with Jim Leyland about Barry Bonds and the Baseball Hall of Fame

Sports / Baseball /

DETROIT — One of the favorite memories of my career is of Jim Leyland, when he was the Detroit Tigers’ manager, conducting a morning interview in his office while lying on his couch, wearing a bathrobe and smoking a cigarette.

The only way to provide you with anything close to an accurate visual image of Leyland’s pose is to compare it to...Read more

Tampa Bay Times/Tampa Bay Times/TNS

John Romano: Once upon a time, the Hall of Fame was in Carl Crawford's future

Sports / Baseball /

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. — A decade before he ever showed up on a ballot, Carl Crawford was a Hall of Famer.

At least that’s how it seemed to a lot of people who watched him play for those early Devil Rays teams. He had the talent, he had the intangibles, he had the stats. It felt like Cooperstown and a retired jersey were just a few more line ...Read more

Paul Kitagaki Jr./Bay Area News Group/TNS

Matt Calkins: Here's why Baseball Hall of Fame voters got it right with Barry Bonds and Roger Clemens

Sports / Baseball /

SEATTLE — Based on what I've seen on Twitter, this will be about as popular an opinion as calling for a national ban on puppies.

The consensus on that platform — which, as I often emphasize, doesn't necessarily reflect the views of the public — is that Roger Clemens and Barry Bonds were robbed of their rightful place in Cooperstown.

On ...Read more

Hannah Foslien/Getty Images North America/TNS

The Yankees and Mets are both waiting on shortstop prospects, but for very different reasons

Sports / Baseball /

It’s becoming increasingly rare for teams to win at the Major League level without a shortstop.

Even if your shortstop isn’t a stratospheric superstar, getting either superb glove work or pumped up power is basically a requirement now. While Atlanta won the World Series with Dansby Swanson — maybe the 12th or 13th best shortstop in the ...Read more

Justin Heiman/Getty Images North America/TNS

Deesha Thosar: Carlos Beltran will be next cheater to confound Hall of Fame ballot

Sports / Baseball /

NEW YORK — The Hall of Fame and cheating.

The two were synonymous on this year’s ballot, as David Ortiz entered Cooperstown in his first year of eligibility. Far bigger stars, like home-run leader Barry Bonds and seven-time Cy Young winner Roger Clemens, fell off the ballot in their 10th and final year due to controversy over their alleged ...Read more

Ricardo Ramirez Buxeda/Orlando Sentinel/TNS

Mike Bianchi: Time is right for Orlando to make a run at Tampa Bay Rays

Sports / Baseball /

Only a couple hours after Major League Baseball killed the Tampa Bay Rays’ kooky, controversial plan to split their home schedule with the city of Montreal, my phone rang last week.

It was the great Pat Williams on the other end.

“Mikey boy, now’s our chance,” Williams said. “Now’s our chance to bring baseball to Orlando.”

...Read more

Phil Velasquez/Chicago Tribune/TNS

Paul Sullivan: Sammy Sosa is off the Baseball Hall of Fame ballot. The former Cubs slugger never had a chance.

Sports / Baseball /

CHICAGO — Former Boston Red Sox designated hitter David Ortiz was the only player on the 2022 Baseball Hall of Fame ballot to be elected by the Baseball Writers’ Association of America.

Congrats to “Big Papi,” a larger-than-life player who made it in his first year of eligibility, garnering 77.9% of the vote by the BBWAA, surpassing the...Read more

Mark Brown/Getty Images North America/TNS

Can new hitting coach Dillon Lawson help revive Yankees' talented but underperforming offense?

Sports / Baseball /

Dillon Lawson isn’t reinventing hitting, he just wants to look at it differently. The Yankees’ new hitting coach said Wednesday he is focused on “hitting strikes hard,” hitting the ball over the infield and making every swing the best — not just with two strikes.

“I’m still going to cheer and be excited about the 100 mile per hour...Read more

Larry Stone: Awe and regret: Looking back at new Hall of Famer David Ortiz's roots in the Mariners organization

Sports / Baseball /

During the 1996 season, Mariners general manager Woody Woodward asked Mike Goff, the team's manager of the Class A Wisconsin Timber Rattlers, who he felt were the "untouchable" players on his team. In other words, the ones with too much promise to give up in a trade.

Goff gave him two names: Greg Wooten, a dominating right-handed pitcher, and, ...Read more

Jason Mackey: 10 questions to explain baseball's ongoing labor talks

Sports / Baseball /

Between the Steelers' tumult, Pitt's ACC title, the Penguins' metronomic dominance and ownership change, existing frustration over MLB's flawed economic structure or the fact that we're talking about an argument between millionaires and billionaires during a global pandemic, it was easy to ignore baseball's lockout, if not flat-out preferred.

...Read more

Nick Laham/Getty Images North America/TNS

Bill Madden: With help from Rob Manfred, David Ortiz gets free pass into Hall of Fame, while others are held to a higher standard

Sports / Baseball /

NEW YORK — After wading through the muck of steroids cheats, drug dealer associations, lurid sexual harassment charges, and an alt-right extremist who once called for their lynching, the Baseball Writers Association Tuesday bid good riddance to Barry Bonds, Roger Clemens, Sammy Sosa and Curt Schilling on their ballot, dealt a major body blow ...Read more

Paul Kitagaki Jr./Bay Area News Group/TNS

Bill Shaikin: Barry Bonds didn't make the Hall of Fame. Get over it.

Sports / Baseball /

LOS ANGELES — Neither his name nor his greatest accomplishment are hidden. On the official website of Major League Baseball, he is immortalized as owner of the sport’s most cherished record, atop the all-time home run list: Barry Bonds, 762.

There is no asterisk by his name, even though steroids enhanced his performance enough for him to ...Read more

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Hall of Fame elects David Ortiz, snubs Barry Bonds and Roger Clemens in final try

Sports / Baseball /

LOS ANGELES — David Ortiz, primarily a designated hitter who helped the Boston Red Sox win three World Series after an 86-year drought, was the only player elected into the Baseball Hall of Fame on Tuesday.

Snubbed for a 10th and final time by the Baseball Writers Association of America were all-time career and single-season home run leader ...Read more

CHARLES FOX/The Philadelphia Inquirer/TNS

Chase Utley says Jimmy Rollins 'no doubt' belongs in the Baseball Hall of Fame

Sports / Baseball /

It was probably on the first day of his first spring training, Chase Utley said, that he first met Jimmy Rollins. Or maybe it was the summer before when Utley stopped by Veterans Stadium after being drafted in 2000 by the Phillies.

“Actually, I don’t recall the first time,” Utley said with a laugh. “That’s a long time ago.”

Utley ...Read more

Ben Frederickson: MLB and NFL are apples and oranges, but America's pastime should borrow these plays from America's most popular league

Sports / Baseball /

One is a juggernaut on a heat-seeking missile’s path for more (of everything), and it is powered by an audience that cannot get enough. The rocket may crash one day, but it's not going to be tomorrow, so full speed ahead.

The other is losing its grip on a romantic national pastime label as it retreats toward becoming a regionalized sport that...Read more

Nick Laham/Getty Images North America/TNS

Billy Eppler, Buck Showalter confident in new coaching staff and state of the Mets: 'I know we're good'

Sports / Baseball /

To listen to Billy Eppler and Buck Showalter discuss the team they are building is to listen to a pair of men gushing with confidence, sometimes even bordering on arrogance.

Part of it is earned, to be sure. Eppler has done everything right in the offseason, but the offseason is not where he’ll ultimately be evaluated. And Showalter comes ...Read more

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MLB, players' union schedule second meeting amid labor negotiations: reports

Sports / Baseball /

In today’s Major League Baseball labor negotiation news: there is no deal, but there is another meeting.

The Monday meeting in Midtown between the league and the players’ union ended with the slight step forward of scheduling another meeting, according to multiple reports. The sides will reconvene on Tuesday, marking the first time in these...Read more

Dreamstime/Dreamstime/TNS

Jim Souhan: How about a robot arbitrator to settle MLB's dispute?

Sports / Baseball /

While the NFL dominated the sports landscape the past two weekends, Major League Baseball and the MLB Players Association continued to dawdle and damage their own popularity.

Negotiations on a new collective bargaining agreement between baseball's owners and players are set to resume Monday, but there have been no indications that either side ...Read more

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Mike Baxter is forever linked to Johan Santana's no-hitter, but the legendary catch came with a hefty price

Sports / Baseball /

NEW YORK — Kids in Queens have dreamt about it for generations.

Late-game situation. No-hitter intact. Friday night home game. Ball headed your way.

Mike Baxter, a Queens Whitestone native and graduate of Archbishop Molloy High School, found himself in that situation on June 1, 2012. Johan Santana was eight outs away from completing the ...Read more