Did Altuve slide into All-Star lead?

Did Altuve slide into All-Star lead?

HOUSTON -- Many viewed Wednesday night's 6-5 win over the Royals as Jose Altuve's final audition to start the All-Star Game at second base for the American League as fan voting draws to a close on Thursday at 10:59 p.m. CT.

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Chandler Rome is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Carrasco ends up on the precipice of history

Right-hander fans 13 in falling one strike short of no-hitter vs. Rays

Carrasco ends up on the precipice of history

ST. PETERSBURG -- Carlos Carrasco spun around swiftly and watched helplessly as the baseball sailed over second baseman Jason Kipnis. While Kipnis jumped and stretched in an admirable effort to pluck the ball from the air, it was no use. This single from Tampa Bay's Joey Butler was as clean as they come.

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Jordan Bastian is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Major League Bastian, follow him on Twitter @MLBastian and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Vote until tonight; many races can be swayed

Tight competition in AL at 2B, 3B, DH, OF; NL's 3B, OF battles too close to call

Vote until tonight; many races can be swayed

As the voting window for the 2015 Esurance MLB All-Star Game Ballot heads to its finish at 11:59 p.m. ET on Thursday, there are several key races for starting position players in the American League and National League that are coming down to the wire.

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Austin Laymance is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Cruz takes the cake with birthday blast

Slugger launches two-run shot vs. Padres on 35th birthday

Cruz takes the cake with birthday blast

SAN DIEGO -- Nelson Cruz didn't want to wait for the cake, so the Mariners slugger sliced his own gift -- a two-run homer in the top of the ninth -- in Seattle's 7-0 victory over the Padres in Wednesday's Interleague series finale at Petco Park.

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Greg Johns is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @GregJohnsMLB as well as his Mariners Musings blog. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Dipoto resigns; Stoneman named Angels' GM

Dipoto resigns; Stoneman named Angels' GM

ANAHEIM -- Jerry Dipoto ultimately felt he'd had enough.

After more than three years of persistent discord with long-time manager Mike Scioscia, Dipoto abruptly resigned as general manager on Wednesday, five days after what sources described as a heated meeting that proved to be the final straw.

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Alden Gonzalez is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Gonzo and "The Show", follow him on Twitter @Alden_Gonzalez and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Bautista, Donaldson lead Jays' breakout

All-Star candidates swat two of Toronto's five HRs

Bautista, Donaldson lead Jays' breakout

 TORONTO -- All-Star candidate Jose Bautista broke out of his mini slump Wednesday afternoon, and the rest of the Blue Jays lineup followed suit in a dominating 11-2 victory over the Red Sox on Canada Day.

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Gregor Chisholm is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, North of the Border, follow him on Twitter @gregorMLB and Facebook, and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Eovaldi quiets Angels as Yankees snap skid

Eovaldi quiets Angels as Yankees snap skid

ANAHEIM -- Nathan Eovaldi tossed 5 1/3 scoreless innings, and Garrett Jones smacked a long solo home run off Matt Shoemaker, helping the Yankees avoid a sweep by the Angels with a 3-1 win Wednesday at Angel Stadium. The Yankees stayed within a half-game of the first-place Orioles in the American League East.

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Bryan Hoch is a reporter and David Adler is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Walker leads Bucs' 21-hit attack in win over Tigers

Walker leads Bucs' 21-hit attack in win over Tigers

DETROIT -- Second baseman Neil Walker's two-homer night propelled the Pirates to a season-high 21 hits as they topped the Tigers, 9-3, on Wednesday night at Comerica Park.

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Tom Singer is a reporter for MLB.com and writes an MLBlog Change for a Nickel. He can also be found on Twitter @Tom_Singer and on his podcast. Alejandro Zúñiga is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Who's signing the top 30 international prospects?

Who's signing the top 30 international prospects?

The international market officially opens for business at 9 a.m. ET.

Today marks the start of the 2015-16 international signing period, and the beginning of the professional careers for prospects across the world.

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Jesse Sanchez is a national reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @JesseSanchezMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Did you know: Carrasco's near no-hitter

Right-hander's bid becomes 3rd this season broken up in 9th

Did you know: Carrasco's near no-hitter

Although Carlos Carrasco came up one out shy in his no-hit bid on Wednesday, the Indians starter still turned in a career night while making some history along the way.

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Paul Casella is a reporter for MLB.com. Chad Thornburg is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Key things to watch for in today's games

Key things to watch for in today's games

Their recovery is complete. Now it's time for their return.

All-Star pitchers Matt Cain and Jose Fernandez will both return from extended stints on the disabled list and will make their season debuts in the same game, Thursday at 12:10 p.m. ET in Miami. Fernandez, one of the game's bright young stars, will be coming back from a year spent on the sidelines due to Tommy John surgery.

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Spencer Fordin is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Jose Fernandez shaves superfan's head at ballpark

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Jose Fernandez shaves superfan's head at ballpark

Sure, Marlins Man might be the most well-traveled supporter of Miami's MLB franchise, but this guy is without a doubt the most empathetic. Andres Salgado is an absolute diehard Marlins fan with a particular affinity for 2013 NL Rookie of the Year Jose Fernandez.

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Astros hoping Springer can avoid trip to DL

Astros hoping Springer can avoid trip to DL

HOUSTON -- Primed to enter the All-Star break among the best teams in baseball, the Astros were dealt a severe blow during Wednesday night's 6-5 win over the Royals.

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Chandler Rome is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Posey takes foul off mask, passes concussion test

Posey takes foul off mask, passes concussion test

MIAMI -- Giants catcher Buster Posey said that he could play as soon as Thursday after absorbing the shock of a foul tip and being forced to leave Wednesday night's 6-5 loss to the Marlins in the fifth inning.

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Chris Haft is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Haft-Baked Ideas, follow him on Twitter at @sfgiantsbeat and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

USA Collegiate National Team no-hits Cuba

USA Collegiate National Team no-hits Cuba

CARY, N.C. -- The USA Collegiate National Team made history Wednesday, becoming the first team to hold the Cuban National Team hitless in international play.

Three pitchers -- Tanner Houck (Missouri), A.J. Puk (Florida) and Ryan Hendrix (Texas A&M) -- combined to allow just two batters to reach base on a walk and an error in the 2-0 victory at the USA Baseball National Training Complex.

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Chad Thornburg is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Cubans, Bahamian, Vlad Jr. headline July 2 list

Prospects from around the world to ink deals as international signing period opens Thursday

Cubans, Bahamian, Vlad Jr. headline July 2 list

Baseball dreams come true on the second day of July every year.

That date marks the first day of the international signing period and the first day teens across the globe can sign with a Major League club.

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Jesse Sanchez is a national reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @JesseSanchezMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

2015 Draft: Signing and Bonus Tracker

Here's a complete breakdown of which 2015 Draft picks from the first 10 rounds have agreed to terms, along with their reported bonuses and starting assignments. The list will be updated through the July 17 signing deadline.

Clubs have not announced or confirmed bonuses.

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MLB.com Columnist

Fred Zinkie

DraftKings picks: Jays, Rockies could run wild

DraftKings picks: Jays, Rockies could run wild

Welcome to DraftKings fantasy baseball, the Official Daily Fantasy Game of Major League Baseball.

The players listed below could provide difference-making stats for DraftKings participants on Thursday.

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Fred Zinkie is the lead fantasy baseball writer for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @FredZinkieMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

They Said It: Reaction to Carrasco's near no-no

They Said It: Reaction to Carrasco's near no-no

Indians starter Carlos Carrasco carried a no-hitter into the ninth inning on Wednesday night, but gave up a single to Joey Butler with two outs in the final frame in an 8-1 win over Tampa Bay. Carrasco finished with a one-hit, 13-strikeout gem for Cleveland. Here are some thoughts from inside the Indians' clubhouse in the wake of his outstanding performance.

"It was an 0-2 slider. He went to it. He threw some 0-2 sliders tonight that he executed really well. It's the 124th pitch of the game. He just didn't quite get on top of it and didn't get where he wanted to. He did a great job. What a tremendous effort." -- Indians pitching coach Mickey Callaway, on the pitch to Butler in the ninth inning

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Jordan Bastian is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Major League Bastian, follow him on Twitter @MLBastian and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Hernandez, Howie lift Dodgers past D-backs

Hernandez, Howie lift Dodgers past D-backs

PHOENIX -- Brett Anderson pitched seven quality innings, and Howie Kendrick continued to torment the D-backs as the Dodgers cruised to a 4-3 win on Wednesday night to capture the three-game series at Chase Field.

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Steve Gilbert and Ken Gurnick are reporters for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

2-run blast from Hardy lifts O's vs. Rangers

2-run blast from Hardy lifts O's vs. Rangers

BALTIMORE -- J.J. Hardy broke a tie with his fourth homer of the season to lift the Orioles to a 4-2 win over the Rangers on Wednesday night.

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Brittany Ghiroli is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, Britt's Bird Watch, follow her on Facebook and Twitter @britt_ghiroli, and listen to her podcast. Connor Smolensky is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Reed among 10 top prospect performers Wed.

Astros No. 11 prospect knocks his 20th dinger of the year; second in the Minors in home runs, first in RBIs

Reed among 10 top prospect performers Wed.

It seems like A.J. Reed's home-run parade will never end.

That's all we can infer from the steady stream of moonshots that Houston's No. 11 prospect continues to hit. He launched his 20th dinger of the season during Class A Advanced Lancaster's 8-7 loss to Inland Empire on Wednesday night.

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Alex M. Smith is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Phenom Sano headed to Twins, Vargas optioned

Phenom Sano headed to Twins, Vargas optioned

CINCINNATI -- In a surprising move, the Twins optioned first baseman/designated hitter Kennys Vargas to Double-A Chattanooga after Wednesday's 2-1 loss to the Reds. The Twins will make a corresponding move before Thursday's game, and they are expected to call up top prospect Miguel Sano, according to a source familiar with the team's decision.

The Twins have not announced the move.

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Rhett Bollinger is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Bollinger Beat, follow him on Twitter @RhettBollinger and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

MLB.com Columnist

Jim Callis

Bryant, Buxton or Correa? Execs make picks

Bryant, Buxton or Correa? Execs make picks

Byron Buxton, Kris Bryant and Carlos Correa entered 2015 ranked as MLBPipeline.com's top three prospects (in that order), then started the season in the Minors before their rejuvenated and contending parent clubs sent for them. Bryant got the call from the Cubs on April 17, Correa joined the Astros on June 8 and Buxton debuted with the Twins on June 14.

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Jim Callis is a reporter for MLB.com and writes a blog, Callis' Corner. Follow @jimcallisMLB on Twitter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

MLB.com Columnist

Phil Rogers

ACE program not short on success stories

With life on streets a threat, White Sox keeping young ballplayers focused

ACE program not short on success stories

CHICAGO -- Not all days are created equal.

For Lorenzo Elion III, who heads into his senior season at Simeon Career Academy, one of the biggest came along six years ago, when he was 11. It was his tryout for a spot in the White Sox Amateur City Elite baseball program, which seemed like a long shot. After all, he had started playing baseball only within the last year.

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Phil Rogers is a columnist for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Rays to activate Moore, option Krauss

Left-hander set to make first start in 14 months on Thursday vs. Indians

Rays to activate Moore, option Krauss

ST. PETERSBURG -- The Rays will activate Matt Moore from the 60-day disabled list before Thursday's series finale against the Indians, and option first baseman Marc Krauss to Triple-A Durham.

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Bill Chastain is a reporter for MLB.com. Listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Jitters building as Fernandez set to return

Jitters building as Fernandez set to return

MIAMI -- Jose Fernandez has waited nearly 14 months to return to a big league game, but that doesn't mean Miami's ace will be well-rested for his 12:10 p.m. ET start on Thursday against the Giants at Marlins Park.

The anticipation of the start has the energetic 22-year-old so amped up, he doesn't anticipate getting a good night's sleep.

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Joe Frisaro is a reporter for MLB.com. He writes a blog, called The Fish Pond. Follow him on Twitter @JoeFrisaro and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Cain glad to reach end of 'long road'

Cain glad to reach end of 'long road'

MIAMI -- No matter how Matt Cain performs Thursday, he'll be pitching again, which is what matters most.

Cain, the Giants' three-time All-Star right-hander, will make his first regular-season appearance since July 9, 2014, when he starts the series finale against the Marlins. The 30-year-old right-hander finally has recovered sufficiently from a flexor tendon strain that sidelined him this year, which followed surgery last August to remove bone chips and spurs from his throwing elbow.

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Chris Haft is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Haft-Baked Ideas, follow him on Twitter at @sfgiantsbeat and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Tribe pitchers enjoying unprecedented success

Carrasco becomes 3rd consecutive Cleveland hurler to flirt with perfection

Tribe pitchers enjoying unprecedented success

ST. PETERSBURG -- As Carlos Carrasco sat by his lonesome in the Indians dugout throughout Cleveland's victory over the Rays on Wednesday night, fellow starters Danny Salazar and Cody Anderson understood exactly what was running through his mind.

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Troy Provost-Heron is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.