Cubs' Joe Maddon saddened by Mike Matheny's firing and curious about new Cardinals manager

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Joe Maddon considers major-league managers to be a "very tight brotherhood," so he said he was sad to learn of the firing of Mike Matheny by the Cardinals.

"There are few other jobs," Maddon said Sunday. "I've gotten to know Mike a little bit. I don't know him that well. But I feel for him and his family. I do. That's my immediate thought. It ...Read more

Braves' Acuna moves to center in place of slumping Inciarte

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An eventful first half-season in the majors for Ronald Acuna ended with the celebrated Braves rookie playing center field for the first time at the big-league level Sunday against the Diamondbacks in the last game before the All-Star break.

Braves manager Brian Snitker switched Acuna from left field to center and benched slumping Ender Inciarte...Read more

Cubs beat Padres 7-4, finish first half with lead in NL Central

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SAN DIEGO -- The Cubs didn't let up Sunday after securing sole possession of first place in the National League Central to end the first half.

They knocked out left-hander Eric Lauer after two innings and held on for a 7-4 victory over the Padres at Petco Park.

The Cubs' victory, coupled by the Brewers' fifth consecutive loss to the Pirates, ...Read more

Manny Machado's abrupt mid-game departure gives Orioles tuneup for the inevitable

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As the Orioles' clubhouse cleared out for the All-Star break Sunday, Manny Machado was sent to his fourth All-Star Game with well-wishes from his teammates -- a few fistbumps, several hugs and a lot of good lucks as he goes on to perform on one of baseball's biggest stages.

He will wear an Orioles uniform in Tuesday's All-Star Game at Nationals...Read more

Dodgers clinch series over Angels with 5-3 win

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LOS ANGELES -- For less than a second, the crowd at Dodger Stadium paused. A collective soft gasp sounded, but before the second was over, the apprehension turned to elation and the gasp morphed into shrieks of joy as the ball off Clayton Kershaw's bat trickled into left field.

The tapper was Kershaw's first hit since April 23, and it drove in ...Read more

Motivated Tigers, against all odds, defeat Justin Verlander, Astros, 6-3

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HOUSTON -- The Tigers needed this.

Not for the standings. Not to create second-half momentum. Not to convince the front office to keep players around past the trade deadline like in years past.

No. the Tigers needed to feel what it was like to win again.

"Oh, god," manager Ron Gardenhire said, packing up his final belongings before heading to...Read more

Shildt earns first win as Cardinals manager, defeat Reds, 6-4

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ST. LOUIS -- A day after the Cardinals fired Mike Matheny as manager, a group of struggling players found a groove. Marcell Ozuna singled and scored, Tommy Pham drove in two runs, and Dexter Fowler sent a ball over the right-field wall. It all led to a 6-4 Cardinals win -- the first of interim manager Mike Shildt's career.

Miles Mikolas lasted ...Read more

Michael Brantley breaks tie with home run in three-run eighth; Indians gain split of Yankees

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CLEVELAND -- Michael Brantley put on a power display at the right time and Jose Ramirez ignited the crowd with some speed, and those two spurred an eighth-inning rally that lifted the Indians to a 5-2 win over the New York Yankees on Sunday afternoon at Progressive Field.

The Indians and Yankees spent much of the day in a 2-2 deadlock until the...Read more

Brian Dozier's 10th-inning walk-off grand slam ends wild game as Twins beat Rays, 11-7

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MINNEAPOLIS -- The Twins are so hot, they finally boiled over in the 90-degree sunshine Sunday. And Brian Dozier provided the hottest finish of all.

With the Rays utilizing five infielders in hopes of cutting off a run, Dozier slugged a 1-1 changeup over their heads and into the left-field seats, scoring three runs in front of him. It was the ...Read more

Teheran comes through as Braves avoid sweep with 5-1 win over D-backs

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ATLANTA -- In his most perplexing season, Braves veteran Julio Teheran had alternated really good and really bad starts his past six times out. But Sunday, in the last game before the All-Star break, when his slumping team needed a solid performance from the veteran, one that might help them ease into the break in a better mood, he came through....Read more

The Royals complete the worst first half of a season in team history; fall to White Sox, 10-1

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CHICAGO -- Late Sunday night, Royals manager Ned Yost will board a plane destined for his farm in Georgia. A group of Royals players will return to Kansas City, while many others will head their separate ways.

For four days, they will savor a reprieve from a full-on rebuild comprised of more frustration than triumph, more questions than answers...Read more

Orioles erupt in third inning, hold on for 6-5 victory over Rangers

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BALTIMORE -- On a rainy afternoon when the offense mysteriously reappeared and Manny Machado mysteriously disappeared, the Orioles closed out the non-mathematical first half of the season with a 6-5 victory over the Texas Rangers at Camden Yards.

The Manny mystery was soon solved. There was a predictable buzz when Jace Peterson came out on deck...Read more

Marlins ride eight-run inning to enter All-Star break with win over Phillies

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MIAMI -- In the Marlins' final game before the All-Star break, the hits started coming and they didn't stop coming.

Miami scored eight runs in an explosive fifth inning, erasing a five-run deficit and propping the Marlins to a 10-5 win over the Philadelphia Phillies. The Marlins finished the first half of the season by winning five of their ...Read more

On firing Matheny, Cardinals chairman DeWitt says 'it was time for a fresh voice'

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ST. LOUIS -- Seeking what he referred to multiple times as a "fresh start" and a "new start," Cardinals chairman Bill DeWitt Jr. said the firing of manager Mike Matheny late Saturday night was a response to what officials saw as a team not living up to expectations, or even backsliding.

"Unfortunately our club has not played up to its ...Read more

Matheny takes high road, accepts blame for Cardinals' disappointing season

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Deposed Cardinals manager Mike Matheny took the high road Sunday. He threw no daggers at anyone in the organization for his abrupt dismissal after Saturday's come-from-ahead 8-2 loss here to Cincinnati.

"I've got nothing but gratitude," said Matheny, "and this goes way back. I got two new lives with this organization, first when (manager) Tony ...Read more

As pivotal All-Star break arrives, Orioles still weighing interest for top trade chips Machado, Britton, others

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The Orioles enter the All-Star break preparing to navigate one of the club's most pivotal stretches in determining its future in the weeks leading up to the non-waiver trade deadline, moves that will serve as the building blocks of the team's rebuild.

They still have the top trade chip on the market in shortstop Manny Machado, who, at this ...Read more

Cubs bash Padres despite Hosmer's slump-busting homer

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SAN DIEGO--Eric Hosmer finally got under one Saturday night.

Yet Luis Perdomo and the San Diego Padres, again, could not get out of their own way.

The Padres' slumping first baseman hit his first homer in over a month, a high, loud shot that ultimately went for naught in an 11-6 loss to the Chicago Cubs that extended San Diego's skid into the ...Read more

A's edge Giants, 4-3, on Canha's home run

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SAN FRANCISCO -- All Gorkys Hernandez could do was turn slightly, bend at the waist and put his hands on his knees as the ball sailed well into the left-field seats.

He didn't even bother running to the wall. Mark Canha, too, knew the ball was long gone the second it left his bat.

The Oakland Athletics' pinch-hitter flipped his bat to the ...Read more

Rockies keep M's reeling with 4-1 win

Sports / Baseball /

DENVER -- Maybe it's fatigue and the need for the looming All-Star break. Sure it would be beneficial for the Seattle Mariners, who are stumbling and weaving toward the midseason pause in forgettable fashion. And, yes, they are playing without their starting catcher and unable to use their most dangerous hitter but for one plate appearance per ...Read more

As Orioles work to trade closer Zach Britton, he's showing suitors he's only getting better

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BALTIMORE -- Zach Britton's days wearing an Orioles uniform are numbered. The longest-tenured player in the organization will likely be traded in the coming weeks -- or days -- before the July 31 nonwaiver trade deadline.

When Britton, 30, ruptured his Achilles tendon in December, he hoped for a June return so he could be in top form to help ...Read more