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MLB News Wire
  • MLB roundup: Strasburg wins 14th, shuts down Indians
    By The Sports Xchange / Wednesday, July 27, 2016

    CLEVELAND -- Stephen Strasburg pitched seven scoreless innings for his 14th win, Trea Turner had three RBIs and Daniel Murphy homered as the Washington Nationals beat the Cleveland Indians 4-1 on Wednesday.

    • Strasburg (14-1) bounced back from his only loss of the season to hold the American League Central-leading Indians to three hits. The right-hander also had seven strikeouts and two walks in the victory.

      Cleveland starter Carlos Carrasco (7-4) surrendered three runs on as many hits in six innings to take the loss.

      Marlins 11, Phillies 1

      MIAMI -- Giancarlo Stanton drilled a two-run homer and Don Kelly hit two triples to lead Miami over Philadelphia.

      The Marlins took two out of three games from the Phillies and retained their position as the second and final wild-card team in the National League playoff race.

      Stanton's homer, his 22nd of the season, was part of a three-run first inning for Miami. The blast to left field gave Stanton 525 career RBIs, moving him past former Marlins star Miguel Cabrera for third place on the franchise list.

      Padres 8, Blue Jays 4

      TORONTO -- Adam Rosales, Brett Wallace and Alex Dickerson hit home runs as San Diego defeated Toronto to avoid a sweep in the three-game series.

      The Padres have homered in 25 consecutive games, a club record, and Dickerson extended his personal homer streak to four games when he hit his sixth of the season in the eighth inning against left-hander Franklin Morales. The 2002 Texas Rangers set the major league record with homers in 27 straight games.

      Luis Perdomo (5-4) allowed five hits, two walks and four runs in 5 2/3 innings. The right-hander struck out four.

  • Nationals place Drew on DL with vertigo-like symptoms
    By The Sports Xchange / Wednesday, July 27, 2016

    The Washington Nationals placed infielder Stephen Drew on the 15-day disabled list Wednesday with vertigo-like symptoms.

    • The move is retroactive to July 24. Drew has played just once in the past week, sitting out several days with dizziness.

      "At first we thought it was the same bug that everybody else had, but theirs was like a two-day bug. This has been like a week now," manager Dusty Baker said. "So we decided we couldn't it play short anymore for the team and also try to find out what's wrong with him, so he can get back because he's a big part of our team."

      The 33-year-old Drew, who signed with the Nationals as a free agent in January, is hitting .262 with seven home runs and 17 RBIs in 51 games this season. He is 6-for-20 (.300) with a triple, three homers and six RBIs as a pinch hitter.

      On Saturday night against the San Diego Padres, Drew came off the bench after missing several days due to illness and hit a pinch-hit walk-off triple to give Washington a 3-2 victory.

      The Nationals also recalled infielder Wilmer Difo from Double-A Harrisburg for his first major league assignment of the season.

      Difo, 24, is hitting .255 with five home runs and 33 RBIs with Harrisburg. His 26 stolen bases rank fifth in the Eastern League. Of his 96 games played this season, 95 have been at shortstop for the switch-hitting Difo.

  • MLB warns Puig over customized cleats
    By The Sports Xchange / Wednesday, July 27, 2016

    Major League Baseball has threatened to fine Los Angeles Dodgers right fielder Yasiel Puig if he wears customized cleats again.

    • Puig received a letter from Joe Garagiola Jr., MLB's senior vice president of standards and on-field operations, stating that the outfielder will be subject to a fine if he wears the customized Nike shoes on the field again, according to the Orange County Register. The fine could be as much as $5,000 for a violation.

      Puig first wore shoes with an American flag theme on the Fourth of July and later wore shoes, designed by a local artist, with a Cuban flag theme, according to ESPN.com.

      Puig recently wore shoes that were a tribute to retiring Dodgers broadcaster Vin Scully. One shoe read "WIN FOR VIN," complete with a superimposed image of Scully's face on the side. The other shoe read "#ITFDB" -- a reference to Scully's famous line to start games: "It's time for Dodger baseball."

      The legendary announcer, who has worked for the team since 1958, announced last August that the 2016 season would be his final year calling games for the Dodgers.

      Puig is currently day-to-day after tweaking his right hamstring running down the first-base line last Thursday at Washington. He did not start for the fifth consecutive game on Tuesday night due to the hamstring strain.

      Puig is hitting .255 with seven home runs and 32 RBIs in 79 games this season.

  • Jays deal Storen to Mariners for Benoit, cash
    By The Sports Xchange / Wednesday, July 27, 2016

    The Toronto Blue Jays traded struggling reliever Drew Storen to the Seattle Mariners on Tuesday for right-hander Joaquin Benoit and cash considerations.

    • The 28-year-old Storen, who has an $8,375,000 salary in 2016, had only three saves and a 1-3 record with a 6.21 ERA in 38 appearances this season for the Blue Jays. Toronto designated Storen for assignment on Monday.

      "Obviously, this has not been Drew's best season, but he is closely linked to a run of great success pitching in the back end of very good bullpens," Mariners general manager Jerry Dipoto said. "Hopefully, this serves as a change of scenery and over the next two months we can get him back on track."

      Storen was obtained by Toronto in a trade with the Washington Nationals before the 2016 season. He has a 21-13 career record with 95 saves and a 3.44 ERA.

      Benoit, 39, had a 1-1 record with a 5.18 ERA in 26 appearances this season for the Mariners. He has pitched for 15 years in the major leagues and has a 55-43 record and a 3.87 ERA in 687 games.

      Benoit is making $7.5 million this year and will be a free agent after the season.

  • MLB roundup: Rockies roll, end Orioles' win streak
    By The Sports Xchange / Tuesday, July 26, 2016

    BALTIMORE -- Colorado's Carlos Gonzalez and Trevor Story had two RBIs apiece to lead the surging Rockies past the first-place Baltimore Orioles 6-3 on Tuesday night.

    • Colorado has won five of its past six games and rebounded from a disappointing series opener when they lost in the 10th inning on a throwing error by right-hander Jordan Lyles.

      The Orioles' Chris Tillman (14-3) fell short in his bid for a major league-leading 15th victory. He struggled early and often, allowing a season-tying high six runs on nine hits with four strikeouts over five innings. It was Tillman's first loss in nearly a month, which also ended his team's five-game winning streak.

      Marlins 5, Phillies 0

      MIAMI -- Giancarlo Stanton drove in two runs to lead Miami to a win over Philadelphia at Marlins Park.

      Marlins center fielder Ichiro Suzuki, who started the day needing four hits to reach 3,000, went 1-for-5 and also stole a base.

      Both of Stanton's RBI hits came on shots to the opposite field.

      His single in the sixth inning ended Miami's 24-inning scoreless streak, giving the Marlins a 1-0 lead.

      Cardinals 3, Mets 2 (Game 1)

      NEW YORK -- Jedd Gyorko hit a two-run home run in the third inning, and St. Louis defeated New York in the opener of a doubleheader.

      The Cardinals opened their 10-game road trip in a mostly empty stadium, and all the runs were scored in the opening four innings.

      Gyorko's 13th home run of the year and fifth in eight games wound up being the difference for the Cardinals, who have homered in a season-high 16 consecutive games, three shy of the 2006 club record.

      Mets 3, Cardinals 1 (Game 2)

      NEW YORK -- Bartolo Colon pitched seven strong innings and combined with two relievers on a three-hitter as New York earned a split of their doubleheader against St. Louis with a victory in the nightcap.

      Colon (9-5) rebounded from three consecutive starts that did not last beyond 5 2/3 innings by allowing a run and three hits. It was the fifth time he lasted at least seven innings and allowed one run this season.

      Colon finished his 227th career win by getting eight strikeouts without a walk, marking the eight time the right-hander did not issue a free pass this season. He threw 65-of-87 pitches for strikes and faced two above the minimum.

      White Sox 3, Cubs 0

      CHICAGO -- James Shields threw 7 2/3 scoreless innings, and Adam Eaton homered as the White Sox earned their fourth straight win, defeating the Cubs at U.S. Cellular Field.

      Shields, who was booed off the mound on June 8 following a rough first start for the White Sox after being obtained from the San Diego Padres, left to a standing ovation Tuesday. He allowed only four hits while striking out five and walking four.

      David Robertson recorded his 24th save with a scoreless ninth inning for the White Sox.

      Mariners 7, Pirates 4

      PITTSBURGH -- Seattle ace Felix Hernandez, in his second start back from a calf injury, gave up three runs over the first two innings before settling down to lead the Mariners to a win over Pittsburgh at PNC Park.

      Hernandez (5-4) pitched six innings, giving up all four runs on nine hits, with three strikeouts and a walk. Steve Cishek pitched the ninth for his 24th save.

      Kyle Seager was 3 for 4 with a home run, and Franklin Gutierrez also homered for Seattle, which scored three runs in the third and three more in the fourth. The Mariners have won five of their past seven games.

      Braves 2, Twins 0

      MINNEAPOLIS -- Adonis Garcia homered and Lucas Harrell pitched six strong innings to lead Atlanta to a win over Minnesota at Target Field.

      Almost 25 years since playing in one of the most epic World Series of all time, won by the Twins with a 1-0 victory in Game 7, the Braves and Twins locked up in another low-scoring game. The stakes were a little different this time around; both Atlanta and Minnesota have the worst records in their respective leagues.

      Both Harrell and Twins starter Ervin Santana were making perhaps their final starts with their clubs. Each have been mentioned among players who could change uniforms before Monday's trade deadline.

      Tigers 9, Red Sox 8

      BOSTON -- Tyler Collins walked with the bases loaded in the seventh inning to force in the winning run, and Detroit edged Boston at Fenway Park.

      Collins worked a two-out, full-count walk from Red Sox reliever Robbie Ross Jr. (1-2), allowing Justin Upton to trot home from third.

      Miguel Cabrera hit a two-run shot for his 20th homer of the season, and Jarrod Saltalamacchia had three hits and two RBIs for Detroit (53-48), which won for the fourth time in six games.

      Blue Jays 7, Padres 6 (12 innings)

      TORONTO -- Toronto scored three runs in the bottom of the 12th inning -- including the winner on a wild pitch --to come back and defeat San Diego.

      With Edwin Encarnacion batting, Paul Clemens uncorked a wild pitch that allowed Devon Travis to score the winning run from third.

      The Padres had taken the lead in the top of the 12th on a two-run homer by Matt Kemp against Jesse Chavez (1-2), who picked up the win.

      Yankees 6, Astros 3

      HOUSTON -- CC Sabathia snapped a six-start winless streak and New York claimed its third consecutive series with a victory over Houston at Minute Maid Park.

      Sabathia (6-8) produced his best start since mid-June, allowing just two runs on four hits and two walks with five strikeouts over 6 2/3 innings. He has surrendered at least four runs and seven hits in each of his six starts dating back to a 4-1 win over the Twins on June 16.

      Jacoby Ellsbury finished 3-for-5 with Carlos Beltran, Mark Teixeira and Starling Castro recorded two hits apiece to pace the Yankees offense. The bottom third of the Yankees order produced five RBIs.

      Angels 13, Royals 0

      KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Yunel Escobar had five hits, matching his career high, and Carlos Perez contributed four hits, including a home run, as Los Angeles topped Kansas City.

      Johnny Giavotella had three hits, including two doubles, and Kole Calhoun drove in four runs as the Angels accumulated 22 hits, equaling their season high. Mike Trout drove in three runs with two hits.

      The Angels are 5-0 this season against the Royals.

      Indians 7, Nationals 6

      CLEVELAND -- Francisco Lindor's RBI single capped a three-run bottom of the ninth inning as Cleveland rallied for a wild win over Washington at Progressive Field.

      Reliever Bryan Shaw (2-4) got the win for Cleveland while Nationals closer Jonathan Papelbon (2-4) took the loss.

      After Washington scored a run in the top of the ninth inning to extend its lead to 6-4, Jose Ramirez led off the bottom of the ninth inning by drawing a walk from Papelbon. Tyler Naquin, pinch hitting for Juan Uribe, lined a double into the gap in left center field, scoring Ramirez to make it 6-5.

      Athletics 6, Rangers 3

      ARLINGTON, Texas -- Sonny Gray remained undefeated in Texas, Josh Reddick drove in three runs and Oakland beat the Rangers at Globe Life Park.

      The A's evened the three-game series at a game apiece against the American League West leaders. Texas had its three-game winning streak snapped.

      Gray put together another strong start against the Rangers, particularly in Texas. The righty went six innings and allowed three runs on five hits, striking out a season-high eight. Gray improved to 5-9 on the season and 8-3 lifetime against Texas, including 6-0 in Arlington.

      Brewers 9, Diamondbacks 4

      MILWAUKEE -- Scooter Gennett and Jonathan Villar each hit two-run singles in the eighth inning as Milwaukee rallied for a victory over Arizona at Miller Park.

      Gennett put Milwaukee ahead 4-3 with an RBI single in the sixth, but an error on left-hander Will Smith led to Arizona tying the score in the seventh.

      Daniel Hudson (1-2) allowed three of his first four batters to reach base in the eighth and Gennett made him pay with a base hit up the middle that put the Brewers in front.

      Dodgers 3, Rays 2

      LOS ANGELES -- Yasmani Grandal's seventh-inning home run was the difference as Los Angeles held on for a victory over Tampa Bay before 46,960 fans at Dodger Stadium.

      Dodgers starter Bud Norris blanked the Rays for 6 1/3 innings, striking out six and allowing just two hits with two walks (one intentional). Norris (6-9) also recorded his 1,000 strikeout during the win, striking out Kevin Kiermaier in the fourth.

      Closer Kenley Jansen earned his 30th save with a scoreless ninth.

  • Rangers recall top prospect Gallo, demote OF Hoying
    By The Sports Xchange / Tuesday, July 26, 2016

    The Texas Rangers recalled versatile infielder Joey Gallo from Triple-A Round Rock prior to Tuesday's game against the Oakland Athletics.

    • Gallo, who is Texas' No. 1 prospect per MLBPipeline.com, was inserted into the lineup and batted sixth while playing at first base.

      The 22-year-old is making his second stint with the Rangers this season after going 0-for-1 in a 2-0 setback to the Los Angeles Angels on May 23.

      Outfielder Jared Hoying was optioned to Round Rock to make room on the roster for Gallo, who is batting .246 with 19 homers in 70 games with the Triple-A club this season.

  • MLB notebook: Blue Jays acquire Upton Jr. from Padres
    By The Sports Xchange / Tuesday, July 26, 2016

    Toronto agreed to a trade for San Diego Padres outfielder Melvin Upton Jr., who would give the Blue Jays another big bat to squeeze into a crowded lineup.

    • According to MLB Network, Upton's salary will be largely absorbed by the Padres, leaving only $5 million total for the remainder of this season and next on the Blue Jays' tab.

      Upton Jr. is having a bounce-back season with the Padres with 16 home runs, 45 RBIs and a team-leading 20 stolen bases. The Blue Jays sent minor-league right-hander Hansel Rodriguez to San Diego.

      Rodriguez, 19, is 2-1 with a 3.06 ERA in six starts for Bluefield at the Rookie level Appalachian League.

      --Trading Aroldis Chapman is not the start of a wholesale rebuild of the New York Yankees, and general manager Brian Cashman has no plans to release third baseman Alex Rodriguez.

      Batting .206 with nine home runs in 58 games this season, Rodriguez has fallen into a platoon and turns 41 on Wednesday with a salary next season of $30 million.

      Rodriguez has 696 career home runs. The Yankees are not likely to be able to trade him and releasing him would force the team to pay his full salary.

      Meanwhile, Mark Teixeira remains a regular at first base but is playing through pain at a similarly steep price tag north of $25 million.

      --Washington Nationals first baseman Ryan Zimmerman was activated from the 15-day disabled list, the team announced. Zimmerman (ribcage) had been sidelined since July 7.

      The Nationals also activated left-hander Sammy Solis (knee) from the disabled list, and optioned outfielder Michael Taylor and right-hander Lucas Giolito to Triple-A Syracuse.

      --The St. Louis Cardinals placed right-hander Trevor Rosenthal on the 15-day disabled and recalled left-hander Dean Kiekhefer from Triple-A Memphis prior to Tuesday's doubleheader versus the New York Mets.

      St. Louis also recalled Sam Tuivailala to serve as the club's 26th man. Rosenthal, who has been nursing right shoulder inflammation, has posted a 2-5 mark with a 5.13 ERA in 40 games this season.

      --The Kansas City Royals recalled top prospect Raul A. Mondesi from Triple-A Omaha prior and optioned utility player Whit Merrifield to Omaha.

      Mondesi, who is a shortstop, was suspended 50 games on May 10 for violating Major League Baseball's substance abuse policy. The soon-to-be 21-year-old is the No. 1 prospect, according to MLBPipeline.com.

      --The Pittsburgh Pirates reinstated catcher Eric Fryer from the paternity list, the club announced.

      Catcher Elias Diaz was optioned to Triple-A Indianapolis to open up a roster spot.

  • Marlins CF Suzuki closing in on 3,000 hits
    By The Sports Xchange / Tuesday, July 26, 2016

    MIAMI -- Philadelphia Phillies manager Pete Mackanin started his pre-game chat with the media on Tuesday by talking about the opposing team, the Miami Marlins.

    • "I see Ichiro (Suzuki) is leading off (and playing center field)," Mackanin said. "Maybe give him two hits, but we have to win."

      Indeed, Suzuki, who needs four hits to reach 3,000, started on Tuesday for the first time since last Thursday. Since then, he has had four pinch-hit appearances and gone 0-for-4 with two strikeouts.

      Marlins manager Don Mattingly said Suzuki got the start primarily because center fielder Marcell Ozuna has slumped in the previous 14 games, batting just .173.

      "(Ozuna) has been a little off kilter," Mattingly said. "Give him a day to sit. Give him a day to work on his swing. It's about getting (Ozuna) back on track, and that's where (Suzuki) has been so important for us."

      Mattingly said Marlins executives have not pressured him to write Suzuki's name on the lineup card.

      "Hopefully," Mattingly said, "Ich can get four hits tonight, and we can celebrate."

  • Royals recall top prospect Mondesi, demote Merrifield
    By The Sports Xchange / Tuesday, July 26, 2016

    The Kansas City Royals recalled top prospect Raul A. Mondesi from Triple-A Omaha prior to Tuesday's game against the Los Angeles Angels.

    • The Royals also optioned utility player Whit Merrifield to Omaha.

      Mondesi, who is a shortstop, was suspended 50 games on May 10 for violating Major League Baseball's substance abuse policy. The soon-to-be 21-year-old is the No. 1 prospect, according to MLBPipeline.com.

      Mondesi batted .304 with one homer and seven extra-base hits in 14 games for the Storm Chasers.

      Merrifield was batting .271 with two homers and 17 RBIs this season. The 27-year-old cooled off after a hot start, batting just 9-for-53 with 17 strikeouts in 16 games in July.

  • Nationals activate 1B Zimmerman
    By The Sports Xchange / Tuesday, July 26, 2016

    Washington Nationals first baseman Ryan Zimmerman was activated from the 15-day disabled list, the team announced on Tuesday.

    • Zimmerman (ribcage) had been sidelined since July 7.

      The Nationals also activated left-hander Sammy Solis (knee) from the disabled list, and optioned outfielder Michael Taylor and right-hander Lucas Giolito to Triple-A Syracuse.

      Zimmerman, 31, is experiencing the worst season of his career. He entered Tuesday's contest with 12 homers and 38 RBIs while batting a career-low .221.

      Solis has a 2.43 ERA in 25 games for Washington.

  • Pirates reinstate C Fryer from paternity list
    By The Sports Xchange / Tuesday, July 26, 2016

    The Pittsburgh Pirates reinstated catcher Eric Fryer from the paternity list, the club announced Tuesday.

    • Catcher Elias Diaz was optioned to Triple-A Indianapolis to open up a roster spot.

      Fryer, 30, is batting .320 in 10 games since joining Pittsburgh.

      Overall this season, he is batting .349 in 63 at-bats. He played 24 games with the St. Louis Cardinals earlier this season.

  • Cardinals place RHP Rosenthal on DL, recall Kiekhefer
    By The Sports Xchange / Tuesday, July 26, 2016

    The St. Louis Cardinals placed right-hander Trevor Rosenthal on the 15-day disabled and recalled left-hander Dean Kiekhefer from Triple-A Memphis prior to Tuesday's doubleheader versus the New York Mets.

    • St. Louis also recalled Sam Tuivailala to serve as the club's 26th man. He is available for the second contest against the Mets.

      Rosenthal, who has been nursing right shoulder inflammation, has posted a 2-5 mark with a 5.13 ERA in 40 games this season.

      Kiekhefer has made 11 appearances with the Cardinals this season and recorded a 4-1 mark with two saves and a 2.00 ERA in 23 relief outings with the Redbirds.

      Tuivailala logged two innings in three relief appearances with St. Louis earlier this month.

  • Yankees not considering cutting A-Rod
    By The Sports Xchange / Tuesday, July 26, 2016

    Trading Aroldis Chapman is not the start of a wholesale rebuild of the New York Yankees, and general manager Brian Cashman has no plans to release third baseman Alex Rodriguez.

    • Batting .206 with nine home runs in 58 games this season, Rodriguez has fallen into a platoon and turns 41 on Wednesday with a salary next season of $30 million.

      Mark Teixeira remains a regular a first base but is playing through pain at a similarly steep price tag north of $25 million.

      "It hasn't played out to certainly what we expected in 2016 but all I can tell you is they're professionals they're doing everything in their power to put themselves in the position to be successful," Cashman said. "We're all hoping that better games and days are ahead involving them. It doesn't guarantee it."

      Rodriguez has 696 career home runs. The Yankees are not likely to be able to trade him and releasing him would force the team to pay his full salary.

  • Blue Jays acquire Padres OF Upton
    By The Sports Xchange / Tuesday, July 26, 2016

    Toronto agreed to a trade for San Diego Padres outfielder Melvin Upton Jr., who would give the Blue Jays another big bat to squeeze into a crowded lineup.

    • According to MLB Network, Upton's salary will be largely absorbed by the Padres, leaving only $5 million total for the remainder of this season and next on the Blue Jays' tab.

      Upton Jr. is having a bounce-back season with the Padres with 16 home runs, 45 RBIs and a team-leading 20 stolen bases. The Blue Jays sent minor-league right-hander Hansel Rodriguez to San Diego.

      The Padres owed Upton $16.45 million in 2017 but are on a run of unloading hefty contracts, a shift that began in the offseason when they traded closer Craig Kimbrel to the Boston Red Sox and included in-season deals involving right-hander James Shields and left-hander Drew Pomeranz.

      Rodriguez, 19, is 2-1 with a 3.06 ERA in six starts for Bluefield at the Rookie level Appalachian League.

      The Blue Jays are set in left field with All-Star Michael Saunders and right field with Jose Bautista, but acquiring Upton creates options for rotating players in the designated hitter role and playing Edwin Encarnacion at first base.

      The Padres owed Upton $16.45 million in 2017 but are on a run of unloading hefty contracts, a shift that began in the offseason when they traded closer Craig Kimbrel to the Boston Red Sox and included in-season deals involving right-hander James Shields and closer Drew Pomeranz.

      Entering Tuesday, the Blue Jays trailed the Orioles by three games in the American League East.

  • Sale apologizes but stands by passionate reaction
    By The Sports Xchange / Tuesday, July 26, 2016

    Chicago White Sox ace Chris Sale apologized for letting down his teammates and fans for his Saturday tirade that led to a five-game team suspension, but he didn't back down from the position that led to him cutting up the team's throwback uniforms.

    • Sale spoke with MLB.com on Monday, his first public comments since the incident.

      The left-hander was due to start Saturday against the Detroit Tigers, and the White Sox were scheduled to wear 1976 throwback uniforms that day, complete with collared jerseys that are not intended to be tucked into the pants.

      Sale told the team he would be uncomfortable pitching in that uniform, but when his request for a different outfit was declined, he cut up all of the team's 1976 throwbacks. The White Sox wound up playing in 1983 uniforms. Sale was scratched from his start and later suspended for five games.

      "I have regret, because I play 33 times a year at most in the regular season, so I put a lot of emphasis on when I play and I take a lot of pride in work that I do," Sale told MLB.com. "When I can't or don't do that, yeah, I have disappointment in myself for not being there for my guys.

      "Do I regret standing up for what I believe in? Absolutely not. Do I regret saying business should not be first before winning? Absolutely not."

      Sale believes the 1976 uniforms would have hampered the team's ability to beat the Tigers.

      "When I saw that there was something in the way of that 100 percent winning mentality, I had an issue," Sale told MLB.com. "I tried to bring it up and say, 'Hey listen, these are my thoughts and concerns,' and they got pushed away because of the business deal that was set in place. I'll never understand why we need to do something on the business side on the field that might impede us winning a game.

      "(The '76 uniforms) are uncomfortable and unorthodox. I didn't want to go out there and not be at the top of my game in every aspect that I need to be in. Not only that, but I didn't want anything to alter my mechanics. ... There's a lot of different things that went into it. Looking bad had absolutely zero to do with it. Nothing."

      Sale is due to return from his suspension for a Thursday start against the Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field.

      White Sox manager Robin Ventura said the team is not dwelling on the Saturday incident.

      "Guys have seen a lot of stuff, and it's about playing," Ventura said. "I think they're about playing, and we'll go with that until something needs to be addressed. As far as playing, guys are just moving on and playing."

  • MLB roundup: Blue Jays' Sanchez earns 10th straight win
    By The Sports Xchange / Monday, July 25, 2016

    TORONTO -- Aaron Sanchez allowed three hits in seven scoreless innings to win his 10th consecutive decision, and the Toronto Blue Jays defeated the San Diego Padres 4-2 Monday night.

    • Alex Dickerson hit a two-run homer against Bo Schultz in the ninth inning to give the Padres (43-57) at least one home run in a club-record 23 straight games. It equals the longest such streak in the National League since the 2006 Atlanta Braves also homered in 23 games in a row.

      Roberto Osuna retired the final two batters of the game to earn his 21st save of the season.

      Kevin Pillar had three hits, including two doubles, and drove in a run for the Blue Jays (56-44) in the first game that the Padres ever played in Toronto.

      Sanchez (11-1) allowed two walks and threw a wild pitch while striking out seven. The right-hander has not lost since April 22.

      Orioles 3, Rockies 2 (10 innings)

      BALTIMORE-- Adam Jones scored on a 10-inning fielder's choice and error by pitcher Jordan Lyles, and Baltimore stretched its winning streak to five with a victory over Colorado.

      Jones started the game-winning rally with a one-out single that hit the bag and popped way up in the air and away from Nolan Arenado. Jonathan Schoop followed with a soft single to right that sent Jones to third.

      Manny Machado then grounded one back to Lyles (2-3). The right-hander dropped it but recovered to throw home, and Jones slid in under catcher Nick Hundley's tag.

      Chaz Roe (1-0) earned the win for the Orioles (58-40) after a scoreless 10th. Baltimore now is a season-high 18 games over .500.

      Brewers 7, Diamondbacks 2

      MILWAUKEE -- Arizona pitcher Braden Shipley allowed three home runs in his major league debut as the Diamondbacks lost to Milwaukee at Miller Park.

      Shipley allowed eight hits and four walks while striking out four over 5 1/3 innings of work after being called up earlier in the day from Triple-A Reno.

      Scooter Gennett and Jonathan Villar tagged Shipley for solo shots, and Martin Maldonado brought the rookie's day to an end with a three-run homer in the sixth.

      Phillies 4, Marlins 0

      MIAMI -- Tommy Joseph's RBI double in the eighth inning broke a scoreless tie, leading Philadelphia to a win over Miami at Marlins Park.

      The Marlins fell percentage points behind the idle New York Mets in the race for the second and final wild-card spot in the National League.

      Miami has gone 19 consecutive innings without scoring a run. The Marlins managed just two singles Monday but made three errors.

      Tigers 4, Red Sox 2

      BOSTON -- Jose Iglesias hit a go-ahead, two-run home run in the sixth inning to do in his former team as Detroit beat Boston.

      It was the first career homer at Fenway Park for the former top Red Sox prospect, who played three seasons with the team before being dealt to Detroit on July 30, 2013, in a three-way trade that brought Jake Peavy to Boston.

      Justin Verlander (10-6) earned his first win at Fenway in nearly seven years, holding the hot-hitting Red Sox to one run on five hits and two walks with five strikeouts in six innings.

      The 2011 American League MVP and Cy Young Award winner hadn't won at Fenway since striking out eight over four scoreless innings in a 2-0 victory Aug. 13, 2009.

      Yankees 2, Astros 1

      HOUSTON -- Michael Pineda was the winner of a pitcher's duel with Dallas Keuchel and New York eked out a win over Houston at Minute Maid Park.

      Pineda (5-9) and Keuchel (6-10) were both exceptional, but the Yankees moved a season-high three games over .500 with an eighth-inning rally against Keuchel ignited by the bottom of their order.

      Austin Romine followed a leadoff single from Chase Headley with an RBI double to straightaway center field. Keuchel recovered to record two consecutive outs but the damage was done.

      Rangers 7, Athletics 6

      ARLINGTON, Texas -- Adrian Beltre drilled a two-run walk-off home run with two outs in the ninth, lifting Texas to a win over Oakland at Globe Life Park.

      Beltre's second homer of the game sailed into the A's bullpen off closer Ryan Madson. The Rangers rallied from a 5-1 deficit to beat their American League West rivals for the fourth straight time.

      Texas extended its winning streak to three in the opener of a seven-game homestand. The Rangers also upped their lead in the division to 3 1/2 game with Houston's loss to the New York Yankees.

      Angels 6, Royals 2

      KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Left-hander Hector Santiago pitched splendidly into the sixth inning and Albert Pujols had three hits and drove in four runs as Los Angeles topped Kansas City.

      Santiago is 6-0 in eight starts since a June 10 loss to Cleveland. Santiago, who is 2-0 with a career 1.69 ERA at Kauffman Stadium, went 5-0 in July. Santiago (9-4) limited the Royals to two runs on five hits over 5 1/3 innings.

      Pujols upped his RBI total to 76, including a big league best 26 in July. He lined a single to right in the seventh to score Mike Trout. His ninth-inning single scored Johnny Giavotella to cap the Angels' scoring.

      White Sox 5, Cubs 4

      CHICAGO -- Tyler Saladino delivered a walk-off single with one out in the ninth inning to lift the White Sox to a win over their crosstown rival Cubs at U.S. Cellular Field.

      Saladino's game-winner off of newly acquired Cubs reliever Mike Montgomery scored J.B. Shuck, who led off the inning with a single for the White Sox.

      Shuck advanced into scoring position on a sacrifice bunt before Saladino came through on an 0-2 pitch with the single up the middle that center fielder Matt Szczur failed to field cleanly.

      Reds 7, Giants 5

      SAN FRANCISCO -- Jay Bruce blasted a pair of two-run home runs, including one that gave Cincinnati the lead for good in the sixth inning, and the Reds ran their record since the All-Star break to 7-3.

      Eugenio Suarez followed Bruce's first homer with a two-run shot of his own, helping the Reds win for the 24th time in their past 39 games against the Giants. The loss was San Francisco's eighth in nine games since the break, and it ended a four-game home winning streak.

      Anthony DeSclafani (6-0) remained the majors' only unbeaten pitcher with a minimum of seven starts despite allowing five runs and six hits in five innings. He walked two and struck out six.

      Cardinals-Mets rained out

      NEW YORK -- St. Louis had an adventurous time getting to New York. Now the Cardinals must to wait to start their 10-game road trip.

      Rain forced the postponement of the series opener between the New York Mets and the Cardinals on Monday night. The teams will start the three-game set with a single-admission doubleheader Tuesday.

      Noah Syndergaard and Bartolo Colon go for the Mets, while Carlos Martinez and Jaime Garcia will start for St. Louis.

  • MLB notebook: Yankees send Chapman to Cubs
    By The Sports Xchange / Monday, July 25, 2016

    The Chicago Cubs acquired closer Aroldis Chapman from the New York Yankees in a blockbuster trade Monday.

    • Chapman fills one of the few remaining holes on a loaded Chicago roster -- that of an experienced left-handed late-inning reliever -- as the first-place Cubs improve their chances to win their first World Series title since 1908.

      The Cubs sent a four-player package to the Yankees -- top shortstop prospect Gleyber Torres, minor league outfielder Billy McKinney, right-handed pitcher Adam Warren and minor league outfielder Rashad Crawford.

      Chapman is expected to join the Cubs for their game Tuesday night against the cross-town rival Chicago White Sox.

      Chapman has 166 saves over his seven-year major league career, the first six of which were with the Cincinnati Reds. The 28-year-old Cuban was 3-0 with a 2.01 ERA, 20 saves and 44 strikeouts with the Yankees this season.

      Torres, 19, was the Cubs' top-ranked prospect and No. 15 in baseball, according to ESPN baseball insider Keith Law. In 94 games for Class A Myrtle Beach this year, Torres batted .275 with a .359 on-base percentage, a .433 slugging percentage, nine homers and 47 RBIs. He had 19 stolen bases in 29 attempts.

      McKinney, 21, was hitting .252 with one home run, 12 doubles and three triples in 88 games for Double-A Tennessee this season. He is a former first-round draft pick.

      --Toronto Blue Jays slugger Jose Bautista was activated off the 15-day disabled list prior to Monday's home game against the San Diego Padres.

      Outfielder Junior Lake was designated for assignment to clear a roster spot for Bautista, who has been sidelined since June 16 with turf toe. The veteran suffered the injury while crashing into the right-field wall against Philadelphia.

      The 35-year-old Bautista is batting .230 with 12 homers and 41 RBIs in 65 games this season.

      Lake, 26, batted .206 with one homer and two RBIs in 19 games for the Blue Jays.

      --Right-handed pitcher Jerome Williams had his contract purchased by the St. Louis Cardinals from Triple-A Memphis.

      He fills the roster spot of rookie pitcher Mike Mayers, who was optioned to Memphis after allowing nine earned runs in 1 1/1 innings in Sunday night's game.

      The Cardinals also transferred right-handed pitcher Jordan Walden (right shoulder) to the 60-day disabled list.

      Williams, 34, was signed to a minor-league contract in June and posted a 5-3 record with a 4.89 ERA in nine starts for the Redbirds. He has spent 10 seasons in the majors since being selected in the first round of the 1999 draft by the San Francisco Giants. Williams owns a career record of 52-66 with a 4.57 ERA.

      --The Orioles are expecting RHP Ubaldo Jimenez to return to the team on Tuesday.

      Jimenez's wife had a baby, and the pitcher had been on the paternity leave list.

      Jimenez could be in the mix to start Thursday's make-up game in Minnesota, according to manager Buck Showalter, even though the right-hander has not pitched since July 8.

      His name has popped up in trade talks. The 32-year-old is owed about $18 million through next season. This season, one of the worst of his career, has seen him struggle to a 5-9 record with a 7.38 ERA.

      --The Brewers placed infielder Will Middlebrooks on the 15-day disabled list Monday with a strained lower right leg.

      Middlebrooks was injured in the third inning of Sunday's game while running to third base. He needed help just to get off the field.

      Outfielder Keon Broxton was recalled from Triple-A Colorado Springs for his fourth big league stint this season.

      --Red Sox closer Craig Kimbrel is rehabbing from a left knee medial meniscus tear and on Monday threw a "good" and "aggressive" 25-pitch bullpen session, Boston manager John Farrell said.

      If he doesn't have any issues on Tuesday, Farrell said Kimbrel could throw another bullpen session on Wednesday and then be activated by the weekend.

      He hasn't pitched since before the All-Star break.

  • Rangers' Fielder to have season-ending neck surgery
    By The Sports Xchange / Monday, July 25, 2016

    Texas Rangers first baseman Prince Fielder will undergo season-ending neck surgery, the team announced on Monday.

    • The surgery will be the second fusion procedure in 27 months for Fielder. His 2014 season ended with neck surgery.

      Fielder recently was diagnosed with a herniated disk, which might help explain his dismal .212 batting average. He has only eight home runs and 44 RBIs in 89 games.

      After his 2014 surgery, Fielder bounced back with an All-Star performance in 2015 when he hit .305 with 23 homers and 98 RBIs.

      He is scheduled to have surgery later this week.

  • Cardinals add veteran RHP Jerome Williams
    By The Sports Xchange / Monday, July 25, 2016

    Right-handed pitcher Jerome Williams had his contract purchased by the St. Louis Cardinals from Triple-A Memphis.

    • He fills the roster spot of rookie pitcher Mike Mayers, who was optioned to Memphis after allowing nine earned runs in 1 1/1 innings in Sunday night's game. The Cardinals also transferred right-handed pitcher Jordan Walden (right shoulder) to the 60-day disabled list.

      Williams, 34, was signed to a minor-league contract in June and posted a 5-3 record with a 4.89 ERA in nine starts for the Redbirds. He has spent 10 seasons in the majors since being selected in the first round of the 1999 draft by the San Francisco Giants. Williams owns a career record of 52-66 with a 4.57 ETA in 225 games, including 149 starts. He was 4-12 in 33 games, 21 starts, for Philadelphia last season.

  • Blue Jays activate Bautista, DFA Lake
    By The Sports Xchange / Monday, July 25, 2016

    Toronto Blue Jays slugger Jose Bautista was activated off the 15-day disabled list prior to Monday's home game against the San Diego Padres.

    • Outfielder Junior Lake was designated for assignment to clear a roster spot for Bautista, who has been sidelined since June 16 with turf toe. The veteran suffered the injury while crashing into the right-field wall against Philadelphia.

      Bautista went 2-for-14 with one homer in four rehabilitation games. He played one game with Class A Advanced Dunedin and the other three with Triple-A Buffalo.

      The 35-year-old Bautista is batting .230 with 12 homers and 41 RBIs in 65 games this season.

      Lake, 26, batted .206 with one homer and two RBIs in 19 games for the Blue Jays.

  • Cubs land closer Chapman from Yankees
    By The Sports Xchange / Monday, July 25, 2016

    The Chicago Cubs acquired flame-throwing closer Aroldis Chapman from the New York Yankees in a blockbuster trade Monday.

    • Chapman fills one of the few remaining holes on a loaded Chicago roster -- that of an experienced left-handed late-inning reliever -- as the first-place Cubs improve their chances to win their first World Series title since 1908.

      The Cubs sent a four-player package to the Yankees -- top shortstop prospect Gleyber Torres, minor league outfielder Billy McKinney, right-handed pitcher Adam Warren and minor league outfielder Rashad Crawford.

      Chapman is expected to join the Cubs for their game Tuesday night against the cross-town rival Chicago White Sox.

      Chapman, who was suspended for the first 30 games of the season under Major League Baseball's domestic violence policy for his involvement in an incident in October, issued a statement through the Cubs.

      "I want to thank the New York Yankees for trusting and supporting me, and I wish nothing but the best for the Yankees organization and my former teammates," Chapman said. "I am excited about today's trade and look forward to joining the Chicago Cubs and meeting my new teammates. It is a privilege to wear the Cubs uniform and to play for the fans of Chicago.

      "As you know, earlier this year I accepted and served a 30-game suspension from Major League Baseball resulting from my actions of Oct. 30, 2015. I regret that I did not exercise better judgment and for that I am truly sorry. Looking back, I feel I have learned from this matter and have grown as a person. My girlfriend and I have worked hard to strengthen our relationship, to raise our daughter together, and would appreciate the opportunity to move forward without revisiting an event we consider part of our past. Out of respect for my family, I will not comment any further on this matter.

      "I cannot wait to take the mound at Wrigley Field and look forward to helping my teammates deliver a championship to Chicago."

      Speculation circulated Monday morning that one reason why the teams had not announced the trade earlier was because the Cubs were attempting to sign Chapman to a long-term deal. Chapman, a free agent after this season, is making $11.325 million.

      Chapman, known for a fastball that can reach 105 mph, has been one of the biggest names rumored to be on the trading block.

      Chapman has 166 saves over his seven-year major league career, the first six of which were with the Cincinnati Reds. The 28-year-old Cuban was 3-0 with a 2.01 ERA, 20 saves and 44 strikeouts with the Yankees this season.

      "Obviously, we are aware of the circumstances surrounding Aroldis Chapman's suspension earlier this season," Cubs chairman Tom Ricketts said in a statement. "We are also aware that he cooperated fully with the league investigation and takes responsibility for his actions. ...

      "I shared with him the high expectations we set for our players and staff both on and off the field. Aroldis indicated he is comfortable with meeting those expectations. Finally, my family, this team and Major League Baseball take the issue of domestic violence very seriously and support efforts to reduce domestic violence through education, awareness and intervention."

      Torres, 19, was the Cubs' top-ranked prospect and No. 15 in baseball, according to ESPN baseball insider Keith Law. In 94 games for Class A Myrtle Beach this year, Torres batted .275 with a .359 on-base percentage, a .433 slugging percentage, nine homers and 47 RBIs. He had 19 stolen bases in 29 attempts.

      McKinney, 21, was hitting .252 with one home run, 12 doubles and three triples in 88 games for Double-A Tennessee this season. He is a former first-round draft pick.

      Warren, 28, is returning to the Yankees, with whom he began his major league career before being traded to the Cubs during the offseason for Starlin Castro. Warren was 3-2 with a 5.91 ERA in 29 appearances with the Cubs, including one start.

      Crawford, 22, was the Cubs' 11th-round draft pick in 2012. He was hitting .255 with three homers, eight triples and 30 RBIs in 83 games with Myrtle Beach.

  • White Sox should not act as emotionally as Sale did
    By The Sports Xchange / Monday, July 25, 2016

    To sell or not to sell? That was the question facing the Chicago White Sox regarding ace Chris Sale before the weekend began. It still is, only now it's a little more complicated.

    • After throwing some of baseball's best games this season, Sale threw its biggest tantrum on Saturday.

      The 27-year-old lefty didn't want to wear the club's 1976 throwback uniforms in his start against the Tigers because he felt they were uncomfortable. He requested of the club that they not wear them after he arrived at U.S. Cellular Field, was told they couldn't make the switch and then took matters into his own hands. During Sox batting practice, he destroyed enough of the uniforms so the team couldn't use them in the game.

      For this immature and selfish act, he was sent home before the game and then suspended without pay for five games on Sunday. It will cost the favorite for the AL Cy Young $250,000 of his $9.15 million salary this season. The penalty probably should have been bigger because he hurt his organization in many ways.

      He damaged its chances of winning that game by taking himself out of it (the Sox did win it on Sunday after play was suspended by rain Saturday). He forced it to use six relievers in his place, taxing the bullpen for Sunday's scheduled game, which it also lost. And with contenders assembling hefty offers for him in a trade, he might have given some pause about bringing on a talented "problem" or made them reconsider how much to proffer.

      Sale is still incredibly valuable, a great pitcher on a contract that could go three more years for the club-friendly price of about $40 million. And teams that need pitching may still be willing to pay a serious bounty in top prospects because even those alleged of spousal abuse are still desirable because winning seems to trump all. But his value had never been higher than it was before Saturday's events.

      This makes three bad incidents that we know about in the past two seasons. After being ejected after a 2015 brawl against the Royals, Sale went to Kansas City clubhouse looking to continue the fisticuffs -- resulting in a five-game suspension from MLB. When Adam LaRoche quit the team in spring training after the organization requested, at the behest of some players, that he stop bringing his son to the park every day, Sale railed against Sox VP Kenny Williams.

      Had the White Sox disciplined him then -- something they should have done but did not -- Sale might not have felt entitled to pitch a fit instead of a game on Saturday.

      Sale hasn't spoken on the matter yet, so there is no telling what he was thinking when he destroyed the uniforms. Could he have been trying to force a trade? Or was he just unable to control himself after not getting his way on a date the Sox had scheduled to wear the uniforms at the beginning of the season?

      Some would say Chicago must react to this by dealing Sale and ridding itself of an entitled malcontent. It should not, if it cannot get the haul of prospects it wants.

      Sale could be the ace of a rotation that contends for a World Series if the White Sox can assemble the remaining necessary pieces. And with that club-friendly contract there is little risk to keeping him; the market might not be limited to only the contenders during the offseason or he could bring a huge return at this time next year if the Sox aren't good.

      Sale, too, could benefit from remaining on the White Sox. A deal to an NL team probably means no Cy Young and no bonus that would earn him an additional $2.5 million in 2019. And one of his reported suitors is the MLB-worst Braves, a situation that could put him even further away from reaching a World Series.

      "The actions or behaviors of the last 24 hours does not change in any aspect, any respect, our belief that Chris Sale can help this club win a championship and win multiple championships," White Sox GM Rick Hahn said. "It does not move the needle one iota in terms of his value to this club, his value to any other club that may be interested in his services or the likelihood of him being moved or kept whatsoever. None of that stuff is impacted at all by these events."

      That may be true in the case of the White Sox. But Hahn doesn't know yet whether his assessment of how the rest of baseball sees Sale today is correct or just wishful thinking. The answer to that is coming.

      But one thing the White Sox have to do is not act as emotionally as Sale did on Saturday. They can't do a deal simply for the sake of doing a deal. Bad actor and all, Sale is just too valuable.

  • Reports: Cubs nearing deal for Yanks' Chapman
    By The Sports Xchange / Monday, July 25, 2016

    A deal that would send New York Yankees closer Aroldis Chapman to the Chicago Cubs for a package including Class A shortstop Gleyber Torres was close to completion Sunday night, according to reports from ESPN and Today's Knuckleball.

    • Chapman, a left-hander known for a fastball that can reach 105 mph, is one of the biggest names rumored to be on the trading block.

      The 28-year-old Cuban who was suspended for the first 30 games of the season under Major League Baseball's domestic violence policy for his involvement in an alleged incident in October, is 3-0 with a 2.01 ERA, 20 saves and 44 strikeouts this season.

      Chapman would fill one of the few remaining holes on a loaded Cubs roster -- that of an experienced left-handed reliever. He has 166 saves over his seven-year major league career, the first six of which were with the Cincinnati Reds.

      Torres, 19, is the Cubs' top-ranked prospect and No. 15 in baseball, according to ESPN.com's Keith Law. Torres was scratched about 20 minutes before the first pitch for high Class A Myrtle Beach on Sunday afternoon.

      In 94 games for Myrtle Beach this year, Torres is batting .275 with a .359 on-base percentage, a .433 slugging percentage, nine homers and 47 RBIs. He has 19 stolen bases in 29 attempts.

      The Chicago Tribune reported that the Yankees also inquired about Cubs minor league outfielder Eloy Jimenez. In 86 games with low Class A South Bend, the 19-year-old Dominican is batting .322/.360/.504 with 10 homers and 60 RBIs.

      Chapman agreed to a one-year contract for $11,325,000 in February to avoid salary arbitration.

      The Washington Nationals, San Francisco Giants and Cleveland Indians also are reportedly interested in acquiring Chapman.

      The Yankees plan to retain left-handed reliever Andrew Miller, according to reports. The 31-year-old Miller, who is under contract through 2018, has a 1.45 ERA in 43 1/3 innings with seven saves and 74 strikeouts. He was the Yankees' closer in 2015.

  • Griffey, Piazza emotional during Hall of Fame induction speeches
    By The Sports Xchange / Sunday, July 24, 2016

    COOPERSTOWN, N.Y. -- Ken Griffey Jr. is a 46-year-old father of three who is a couple decades removed from playing baseball with a youthful swagger previously unassociated with the game. But Griffey stepped into the Baseball Hall of Fame Sunday afternoon by turning into "The Kid" one more time.

    • "I want to thank my family, my friends, the fans, the Reds, the White Sox and the Mariners," Griffey said before pausing as his voice broke, "for making this kid's dream come true."

      Griffey then reached underneath the podium, pulled out a Hall of Fame cap and placed it backwards upon his head -- the now middle-aged man evoking his youth and delighting an estimated Induction Sunday crowd of 50,000 that was filled with people who grew old with him.

      Afterward, Griffey said the idea to end his speech by putting on a backwards hat -- it actually belongs to his youngest son, Tevin -- came from 2014 inductee Frank Thomas, who made the suggestion after the Hall of Famers arrived at the Clark Sports Center for Sunday's festivities.

      "We all showed up and Frank was like 'You've got to do it, the hat backwards, you've got to end it like that,'" Griffey said. "So called up my wife, she made a couple calls and one of my friends brought it back to me."

      Griffey's trip back in time capped an emotional afternoon in which he and fellow honoree Mike Piazza both broke down numerous times while delivering their speeches in front of not just one of the biggest crowds in Induction Sunday history but also a stage filled with 48 living Hall of Famers.

      "Absolutely nerve-wracking," Piazza said with a laugh afterward. "As a player, you have to find a way to focus and get into your game mode. I was joking with Ken a little bit before we went up on stage. I was like 'Let's go, we've got this, we've got this.' We were talking like we were going out to play.

      "But nothing can prepare you for those emotions that you feel, because of everything the Hall encompasses and the history that was behind us on that stage."

      Piazza, who delivered the first speech of the afternoon, grew most emotional when discussing his most famous home run -- the game-winning shot he hit in the first New York sporting event held following the terror attacks of Sept. 11, 2001.

      "Many of you give me praise for the two-run home run in the first game back on Sept. 21 to push us ahead of the rival Braves," Piazza said. "But the true praise belongs to the police, firefighters, first responders, who knew that they were going to die but went forward anyway."

      Piazza also shed tears while talking about his family, including his father, Vince, whose childhood friendship with Hall of Fame manager Tommy Lasorda helped convince the Los Angeles Dodgers to select Piazza in the 62nd round of the 1988 draft.

      "We made it, Dad," Piazza said. "The race is over. Now it's time to smell the roses."

      Griffey, meanwhile, said he lost track of how many times he cried during his speech. He actually began crying before he even spoke -- the result of not heeding the advice of his Hall of Fame elders who suggested he avoid eye contact with his children until necessary.

      "I remember everybody saying 'Don't look down at your kids, don't look down at your kids' until you have to," Griffey said. "Nope. Not me. You know what they said when you're a kid? 'Don't do that' and you do it anyway?"

      The speeches from Griffey and Piazza likely elicited some tears from the Mariners and Mets fans who trekked to upstate New York for a rare opportunity to see one of their own enshrined.

      Piazza, the second Hall of Famer sporting a Mets hat, hit 220 homers in seven-plus seasons in New York following a blockbuster trade in May 1998.

      "It was actually the last teame that I ever imagined wanted me," Piazza said of the Mets, whose catcher at the time was injured former All-Star Todd Hundley. "But it was the most amazing experience any human being could have."

      Griffey, the first Hall of Famer to wear a Mariners hat on his plaque, was drafted first overall by Seattle in 1987 and won 10 straight Gold Gloves while hitting 417 homers during 13 seasons with the club.

      "One thing out of my 22 years I've learned: Only one team treats you best and that's your first team," Griffey said. "I'm (darn) proud to be a Seattle Mariner."

      NOTES: A moment of silence was held for Yogi Berra and Monte Irvin, the Hall of Famers who died in September and January, respectively. ... Among the estimated 50,000 fans in attendance was 98-year-old Homer Osterhoudt, who attended the first Hall of Fame induction in 1939. ... The crowd of 50,000 was tied for the second-biggest in Induction Sunday history with 1999. The 2007 ceremonies, when Tony Gwynn and Cal Ripken Jr. were enshrined, drew an estimated 82,000 people. ... The top newcomers on the 2017 ballot are Vladimir Guerrero and Ivan Rodriguez. The leading returning candidates are Jeff Bagwell, who garnered 71.6 percent of the vote in 2016, and Tim Raines, who received 69.8 percent of the vote. Next year will be Raines' final year on the ballot. A candidate must receive at least 75 percent of the vote to be enshrined.

  • MLB notebook: Sale suspended five days for outburst
    By The Sports Xchange / Sunday, July 24, 2016

    The Chicago White Sox suspended All-Star left-hander Chris Sale for five days due to a pregame incident on Saturday in which he reportedly cut up some of the team's uniforms, the club announced Sunday.

    • Sale was scratched from his scheduled start and sent home after allegedly expressing his displeasure over having to wear the team's 1976 throwback uniforms. He also got into a confrontation with a member of the front office in addition to destroying the uniforms.

      "Chris has been suspended for violating team rules, for insubordination and for destroying team equipment," said Rick Hahn, White Sox senior vice president/general manager. "While we all appreciate Chris' talent and passion, there is a correct way and an incorrect way to express concerns about team rules and organizational expectations."

      The White Sox said Sale was fined an undisclosed amount and placed on Major League Baseball's suspended list. Sale's suspension concludes Wednesday.

      Sale has been superb on the field with a 14-3 record and a 3.18 ERA. He started the All-Star Game for the American League. He also has been the subject of trade rumors with both the Texas Rangers and Boston Red Sox reportedly having heavy interest in acquiring his services.

      --The New York Yankees have told teams they are close to trading closer Aroldis Chapman ahead of the Aug. 1 trade deadline, according to multiple reports.

      The flame-throwing left-hander, known for a fastball that can reach 105 mph, has been one of the biggest names rumored to be on the trading block.

      Chapman, 28, was suspended for the first 30 games of the season under Major League Baseball's domestic violence policy for his involvement in an alleged incident in October. Chapman was accused of choking and shoving his girlfriend at their Miami-area home.

      The Yankees acquired Chapman in January from the Cincinnati Reds in exchange for four minor leaguers. The seven-year veteran has converted 20 of 21 save opportunities in 31 1/3 innings with a 2.01 ERA and 44 strikeouts this season.

      The Washington Nationals, San Francisco Giants, Chicago Cubs and Cleveland Indians are reportedly interested in acquiring the Cuban-born reliever.

      The Yankees are planning to retain left-handed reliever Andrew Miller, according to reports. The 31-year-old Miller, who is under contract through 2018, has a 1.45 ERA in 43 1/3 innings with seven saves and 74 strikeouts. He was the Yankees' closer in 2015.

      --The St. Louis Cardinals recalled right-handed pitcher Mike Mayers from Triple-A Memphis to make his major league debut Sunday night against the Los Angeles Dodgers.

      To make room on the 25-man roster, the Cardinals optioned right-hander Miguel Socolovich to Memphis following Saturday night's game.

      Mayers, 24, has made 66 career minor appearances (64 starts), posting a 19-24 record and 3.49 ERA over 350 2/3 innings with 273 strikeouts.

      Socolovich made two relief appearances while in St. Louis, including two scoreless innings Saturday night against the Dodgers.

      --The Texas Rangers signed left-hander Craig Breslow to a minor league contract and sent him to Triple-A Round Rock.

      Breslow, 35, was 0-2 with a 4.50 ERA in 15 relief appearances with the Miami Marlins before being dispatched to the minors on May 13 and released on July 18.

      --The Toronto Blue Jays designated right-hander Drew Storen for assignment and recalled right-hander Ryan Tepera from Triple-A Buffalo.

      Storen was 1-3 with a 6.21 ERA and three saves in 38 relief appearances. In five games with Toronto, Tepera is 0-1 with a 5.79 ERA