MLB.com Columnist

Tracy Ringolsby

10 teams to watch as Trade Deadline nears

10 teams to watch as Trade Deadline nears

Oakland general manager Billy Beane was center stage leading up to the July 31 non-waiver Trade Deadline last season.

He could be the man in the middle of activity again this year -- only from a different angle.

More

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

Bour powers up again as Marlins outduel Cubs

Bour powers up again as Marlins outduel Cubs

CHICAGO -- Christian Yelich hit a solo homer and Justin Bour clubbed his fourth blast in his past four games to power the Marlins to a 2-1 victory Friday, ending the Cubs' three-game win streak in front of 41,212 at Wrigley Field.

Bour's tie-breaking homer came with two outs in the sixth off starter Jason Hammel and landed in the basket rimming the right-field bleachers at Wrigley Field. The Cubs' starter had retired 14 in a row before the home run.

More

Carrie Muskat is a reporter for MLB.com. She writes a blog, Muskat Ramblings. You can follow her on Twitter @CarrieMuskat and listen to her podcast. 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.

All-Star starters unveiled Sunday, full roster Monday

Watch selection shows on ESPN; Final Vote to get underway Monday

All-Star starters unveiled Sunday, full roster Monday

It was historic because it happened exclusively online. It was personal because it decided the fate of your favorite players. It was intense because you argued a lot. And it was teamwork because you helped shatter a Major League Baseball record.

After 65 consecutive days of relentless fan voting to determine starting positions players for the 86th All-Star Game on July 14 at Great American Ball Park in Cincinnati, the largest All-Star balloting program in sports closed at 11:59 p.m. ET Thursday.

More

Mark Newman is enterprise editor of MLB.com. Read and join other baseball fans on his MLB.com community blog. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

MLB.com Columnist

Alyson Footer

FAQ: How exactly are All-Star rosters constructed?

FAQ: How exactly are All-Star rosters constructed?

It's the time of year when division races become clearer, the Trade Deadline looms and the baseball world prepares to descend upon one lucky city that has been selected to play host to one of Major League Baseball's jewel events -- the All-Star Game.

With the All-Star Game, comes All-Star confusion -- not about the game itself, but the rosters, and how exactly they're configured.

More

Alyson Footer is a national correspondent for MLB.com. Follow her on Twitter @alysonfooter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Today's starting lineups: July 3

Below are today's starting lineups that have been made public by Major League Baseball's clubs.

A lineup is not official until it is handed to the umpire.

More

Yanks, A-Rod resolve statistical bonus matter

Four charities will receive total of $3.5 million

Yanks, A-Rod resolve statistical bonus matter

The Yankees and Alex Rodriguez have resolved the issue regarding bonuses under the provision of his contract related to historic statistical accomplishments.

The two parties agreed that $3.5 million will go to charities. The Special Operations Warrior Foundation, Boys & Girls Club of Tampa and Pitch In For Baseball will receive donations totaling $1 million and the Major League Baseball Urban Youth Foundation will receive $2.5 million.

More

Cash Kruth is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @cashkruth. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

MLB.com Columnist

Jim Duquette

5 trade candidates who could be bargains

5 trade candidates who could be bargains

Since the creation of the second Wild Card in 2012, we've seen an increase in the number of teams with legitimate postseason aspirations. As a result, Major League Baseball has encountered strong sellers' markets around the July 31 non-waiver Trade Deadlines in recent years.

This year, the price tags -- in terms of money and prospects -- will be steep for some of the available talent. And teams could have high-end options available for virtually every type of roster hole.

More

Jim Duquette is an analyst for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Top international prospects signing breakdown

Top international prospects signing breakdown

Thursday marked the start of the 2015-16 international signing period, a day when some of the best teenage prospects in the world signed with teams and took huge steps toward fulfilling their Major League dreams.

The Dodgers, as expected, made the biggest splash when the market officially opened, agreeing to terms with two of the top five prospects on MLBPipeline.com's Top 30 International Prospects list, including a $16 million deal with 19-year-old Cuban right-hander Yadier Alvarez. They also landed the No. 5 prospect on the list, Starling Heredia, and are thought to be in contention for top-ranked 20-year-old Cuban outfielder Eddy Julio Martinez, who isn't expected to sign until later in the month.

More

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.

Sabathia pushed back, to start Wednesday

Yanks lefty fine physically, but will work on some things during 'pen sessions

Sabathia pushed back, to start Wednesday

NEW YORK -- The Yankees decided to give veteran lefty CC Sabathia a few more days off before he makes his next start. Sabathia is now scheduled to pitch next week against the A's, instead of this weekend against the Rays.

That means Sabathia will take the mound Wednesday after eight days of rest, something manager Joe Girardi said will give him the chance to throw extra bullpen sessions to continue to work on his pitches. Sabathia's last start was June 29 against the Angels, when he gave up four earned runs in 7 1/3 innings.

More

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

Injured Springer ready to support teammates

Injured Springer ready to support teammates

BOSTON -- Astros outfielder George Springer walked from the clubhouse to the field about two hours prior to Friday's game at Fenway Park while singing in unison with teammate Jose Altuve. Springer is out for six weeks with a fractured right wrist, but his large presence on the team remains.

Wearing a soft cast that bore the signature of several of his teammates and manager A.J. Hinch, Springer spoke about the disappointment of not being able to play, noting that it's important he travels with the club to show his support for his teammates.

More

Brian McTaggart is a reporter for MLB.com and writes an MLBlog, Tag's Lines. Follow @brianmctaggart on Twitter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Utley eyeing late July return

Phillies second baseman hoping to test lingering ankle injury on field next weekend

Utley eyeing late July return

ATLANTA -- Chase Utley is hopeful he can be back on the field before the end of the month.

The Phillies second baseman received a cortisone injection in his right ankle June 24, a day after he landed on the 15-day disabled list.

More

Todd Zolecki is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his Phillies blog The Zo Zone, follow him on Twitter and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Fernandez feels 'fantastic' day after debut

Marlins will work young ace back into regular routine after All-Star break

Fernandez feels 'fantastic' day after debut

CHICAGO -- At first, the Marlins are easing Jose Fernandez back into action. But the 22-year-old's workload will increase after the All-Star break.

The Miami ace made a dazzling return from Tommy John surgery, giving up three runs and striking out six in six innings in Thursday's 5-4 win at Marlins Park. Topping his storybook afternoon, Fernandez also belted a home run.

More

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.

Brewers bullpen catcher sets new cheesesteak record

|
Brewers bullpen catcher sets new cheesesteak record

Brewers bullpen catcher Marcus Hanel was looking surprisingly spry Thursday after making culinary history at Citizens Bank Park.

He'd just broken the record for cheesesteak consumption in the visitor's clubhouse at the Phillies' 11-year-old yard, downing 20 of the massive sandwiches as of Thursday afternoon -- and counting. On Wednesday, Hanel broke the previous three-game mark held by Mets bullpen catcher Eric Langill when he took the first bite of cheesesteak No. 18. On Thursday, Hanel blew past Marlins right-hander Mat Latos' four-game record (18), and had already finished No. 20 when it was time to head out to catch Wily Peralta's pregame bullpen session.

Continue Reading on Cut4

Red Sox activate Victorino, option Bradley

Red Sox activate Victorino, option Bradley

BOSTON -- Shane Victorino has made his share of returns to the Red Sox the last couple of seasons, and the hope is that this time, he can stay healthy for a prolonged period. The right fielder was activated prior to Friday's game against the Astros, and Jackie Bradley Jr. was optioned back to Triple-A Pawtucket.

Victorino, who returns from a left calf strain that had sidelined him since May 24, was not in Friday's lineup, but manager John Farrell expects he will start on Saturday.

More

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

Left oblique strain lands Beltran on DL

Yanks option Dugas, recall Flores, Petit from Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre

Left oblique strain lands Beltran on DL

NEW YORK -- The Yankees placed outfielder Carlos Beltran on the 15-day disabled list on Friday with a left oblique strain.

Beltran was injured when he fouled off a pitch during Tuesday's game against the Angels, exiting in the fifth inning, and he did not play Wednesday.

More

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

Odorizzi to make one more rehab start

Reliever Bellatti also close to rejoining Rays

Odorizzi to make one more rehab start

NEW YORK -- Jake Odorizzi will make one additional Minor League start before returning to the Rays, according to manager Kevin Cash on Friday.

Odorizzi threw a bullpen on Friday and will make his next start on Monday. Cash noted that he did not know where Odorizzi would pitch, but it's likely he will make his start for Class A Advanced Charlotte.

More

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

Nursing foot injury, Swihart placed on DL

Red Sox select reliever Ramirez from Triple-A; Pedroia progressing in rehab

Nursing foot injury, Swihart placed on DL

BOSTON -- With Ryan Hanigan back in the catching mix, the Red Sox were able to get Blake Swihart off his feet and put him on the disabled list prior to Friday's game against the Astros.

Swihart has been dealing with a left foot injury since June 20, when he jarred it in a game against the Royals.

More

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

Banuelos facing an innings limit

Despite rookie's strong debut vs. Scherzer, Braves proceeding cautiously post-Tommy John surgery

Banuelos facing an innings limit

ATLANTA -- Manny Banuelos will be restricted by an innings limit because of the significant caution the Yankees took as he returned from Tommy John surgery last year. But Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez said no definite plans have been set for the rookie left-hander, who produced a stellar Major League debut while matching up against Max Scherzer in Thursday night's 2-1 win over the Nationals.

"I know there is a number out there, but I think if you follow it every individual is different," Gonzalez said. "I think with every case you have to be willing to do something different. But nobody has set a shutdown date or anything like that."

More

Mark Bowman is the Braves beat reporter for MLB.com. He has been covering the club since 2001.

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.

More

Cards call up Pham, boost outfield depth

Cards call up Pham, boost outfield depth

ST. LOUIS -- Down to three true outfielders with Matt Holliday and Jon Jay on the disabled list, the Cardinals fortified their outfield depth on Friday by recalling Tommy Pham from Triple-A Memphis. Manager Mike Matheny wasted no time getting Pham involved, either, starting him in center as the No. 8 hitter in the second of four games against the Padres.

"He's the hottest bat down there, and we need a spark right now, trying to get some offense going," said Matheny, whose club has scored five runs during its current three-game losing streak. "[It's] an opportunity to get Tommy in and see if he can continue doing what he's been doing."

More

Jenifer Langosch is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, By Gosh, It's Langosch, follow her on Twitter @LangoschMLB, like her Facebook page Jenifer Langosch for Cardinals.com and listen to her podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Royals option Colon, add Coleman from Omaha

Royals option Colon, add Coleman from Omaha

KANSAS CITY -- The Royals still consider infielder Christian Colon a valuable prospect.

And that is why the Royals demoted him on Friday.

More

Jeffrey Flanagan is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @FlannyMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

239 reasons to love baseball and America

Fourth of July is perfect time to celebrate country and sport

239 reasons to love baseball and America

Pedro Martinez, about to be inducted into the Hall of Fame later this month, struck out 239 batters for Boston in 2002 and gave up 239 home runs in his career.

Rod Carew led the Majors with 239 hits for Minnesota in his American League MVP season of 1977 -- exactly 80 years after Wee Willie Keeler reached that career-best number for Baltimore.

More

Mark Newman is enterprise editor of MLB.com. Read and join other baseball fans on his MLB.com community blog. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Top prospect Stephenson promoted to Triple-A

Top prospect Stephenson promoted to Triple-A

CINCINNATI -- The top prospect of the Reds organization, right-handed starting pitcher Robert Stephenson, was promoted and is now one step away from the Major Leagues.

Stephenson, 22, was called up and made his debut on Friday for Triple-A Louisville.

More

Mark Sheldon is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Mark My Word, follow him on Twitter @m_sheldon and Facebook and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Tigers DFA Joba, Gorzelanny in 'pen makeover

Detroit calls up Ferrell, VerHagen to fill newly opened relief spots

Tigers DFA Joba, Gorzelanny in 'pen makeover

DETROIT -- Needing a shakeup after three months and a .500 record, the Tigers went to the bullpen on Friday. The moves they made, designating Joba Chamberlain and Tom Gorzelanny for assignment while promoting rookies Jeff Ferrell and Drew VerHagen, leaves that bullpen looking a lot younger.

For now, they're going with the kids. It's a rare move for an organization that has generally leaned on veterans for late-inning outs but now has Joakim Soria and Al Alburquerque as its only relievers with a full season in the Majors. The way things were going, however, they had to change.

More

Jason Beck is a reporter for MLB.com. Read Beck's Blog, follow him on Twitter @beckjason and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Seager claims top fantasy prospect spot

Seager claims top fantasy prospect spot

Every week, the MLBPipeline.com crew will rank the top 10 fantasy baseball prospects in the Minor Leagues. These rankings are based solely on expected 2015 fantasy production in the Major Leagues, in contrast to the MLBPipeline Top 100 Prospects list, which reflects long-term value in all phases of the game.

If you haven't seen all the talk about prospects being called up and rookies making major contributions in 2015, you're either not a baseball fan or you've been living under a rock.

More

Cubs deal for veteran left-hander Richard

Pittsburgh receives cash considerations as southpaw gets Saturday start

Cubs deal for veteran left-hander Richard

CHICAGO -- The Cubs acquired pitcher Clayton Richard from the Pirates for cash considerations on Friday, and the left-hander will start on Saturday against the Marlins at Wrigley Field.

Richard, 31, was originally a 2005 White Sox Draft pick, and he has pitched in 147 games in the big leagues, making 129 starts. He has made Major League appearances for the White Sox and Padres, and he was 4-2 with a 2.09 ERA in nine starts at Triple-A Indianapolis this year.

More

Carrie Muskat is a reporter for MLB.com. She writes a blog, Muskat Ramblings. You can follow her on Twitter @CarrieMuskat and listen to her podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Vizcaino nearing return to Braves bullpen

Pitcher's PED suspension concludes at end of Friday's game

Vizcaino nearing return to Braves bullpen

ATLANTA -- Arodys Vizcaino could join the Braves bullpen within the next few days.

Triple-A Gwinnett activated Vizcaino Friday after he completed a rehab assignment, but with Atlanta playing its 80th game of the season Friday against the Phillies, he could join Atlanta as soon as Saturday, although he's thrown just seven innings this season at or below the Double-A level.

More

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

Jocketty considering plans for Trade Deadline

Jocketty considering plans for Trade Deadline

CINCINNATI -- Speculation has often centered that the Reds could become sellers and make trades as soon as they are done hosting the All-Star Game on July 14. General manager Walt Jocketty did not tip his hand on Friday, but indicated it was under consideration.

Cincinnati entered Friday 5 1/2 games back in the National League Wild Card standings. Could the outcome of final three series in the first half vs. the Brewers, Nationals and Marlins determine the decision?

More

Mark Sheldon is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Mark My Word, follow him on Twitter @m_sheldon and Facebook and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Giants add Lollis, Osich, put Hudson on DL

Broadway sent to Triple-A; Ishikawa, Bochy designated for assignment

Giants add Lollis, Osich, put Hudson on DL

WASHINGTON -- The Giants made a flurry of roster moves Friday to fill their ever-changing needs, which primarily stem from injuries.

Needing more versatility in the outfield, the Giants purchased the contract of Ryan Lollis, a career Minor Leaguer, from Triple-A Sacramento. Gone is first baseman-left fielder Travis Ishikawa, who was designated for assignment.

More

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.

Two-start pitchers to add to your fantasy team

Two-start pitchers to add to your fantasy team

Looking to improve an underperforming starting rotation? Or maybe you just need to gain some ground in strikeouts? Then consider adding these pitchers, who are all scheduled to make two starts in Week 14:

12-team mixed leagues

More

Zach Steinhorn is a fantasy writer for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.