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Dodgers facing pitching crunch before Sunday’s roster deadline

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The have acquired a lot of players and spent a whole bunch of money over the last 12 months, especially on the pitching side. They have a logjam of arms to clear before Sunday’s 3 p.m. ET roster deadline, when all 30 clubs must have their 25-man opening day rosters finalized.

We can fit all of Los Angeles’ big-league-ready pitchers into four caggling with his massive summer price-tag.Previous Gunners boss Unai Emery approved the £72million purchase of Pepe from Lille last summer, but the Ivory Coast international has so far scored just three goals in 21 Premier League appearances for the tegories:

: LHP , RHP , RHP , RHP , LHP , RHP , RHP , LHP

This is the easiest group. These guys will all make the team because they’re either really good or because the team paid a lot of money to acquire/retain them in the not-too-distant past. As easy as it gets.

: LHP

Elbert resumed throwing this week after on his elbow. He’ll begin the year on the DL and appears to be a few weeks from returning.

: RHP , LHP , RHP

In another year, these three would have been fighting for a bullpen spot during spring training. Because the Dodgers are so loaded, they’ll instead go to the minors and serve as depth players who will help cover for the inevitable injury.

: LHP , RHP , LHP , RHP , RHP , RHP

Assuming the Dodgers carry a typical 12-man pitching staff — five starters and seven relievers — four of these guys will make the team while two others will be left on the outside looking in.

Gregg is on a minor-league contract. Though he hasn’t been particularly effective in recent years (92 ERA+ from 2011-12), he allowed just one run on three hits and no walks in 10 1/3 inning this spring. Guerrier had a rough spring (6.48 ERA) after missing most of last season with an elbow issue, but he’s owed $4.75 million in 2013. Belisario is out of minor-league options — meaning he can’t be sent to Triple-A without clearing waivers — and pitched to a 150 ERA+ in 2012.

Capuano, Harang and Lilly are where it gets really interesting. All three are starters who lost their rotation spots due to the club’s spending spree. Capuano, 34, finished the spring strong after a rough start (7.20 ERA overall). As a lefty, he could move into the bullpen to complement Howell. At the same time, he has trade value because he’s relatively affordable ($6 million in 2013) and was solid last summer (102 ERA+).

Harang, 34, has also had a rough spring overall (8.20 ERA), but like Capuano he is coming off a solid year (105 ERA+) and is affordable ($7 million). He doesn’t have Capuano’s injury history (which includes two Tommy John surgeries), but teams do value left-handedness, which Harang can’t offer. He also doesn’t have much experience pitching out of the bullpen.

Lilly, 37, has pitched to a 14.00 ERA this spring and was limited to just eight starts (122 ERA+) last summer due to shoulder problems. Between that and his salary ($12 millioty to break down deep-lying opponents after Sunday’s 2-0 defat to Watford. The result means United have won only once in their 17 games in which they have enjoyed the majority of possession.”We were sloppy, we gave the ball away numerous times especin), he lags cn touch.Mihajlovic was diagnosed with leukaemia in July, so spent all of pre-season and most of the campaign so far in hospital undergoing two courses of chemotherapy.“Don’t worry, the boss can make himself heard even when he’s not physically preseonsiderably behind Capuano and Harang in the trade-value department. There is room for all three guys in the bullpen, but it will cost the team elsewhere.

The Dodgers haven’t made any indications about their pitching plans, but my guess is they will trade either Capuano or Harang (Mets? Rockies?) before Sunday’s deadline and somehow cut ties with Guerrier. That could mean a trade, a release or a trip through waivers. Belisario, Gregg, Lilly and either Harang or Capuano would join the other eight guys on the opening day staff. Injuries (Lilly’s shoulder? Guerrier’s elbow?) could change things, obviously.

That is all just a guess on my part. It seems like the Dodgers have so much pitching depth — both starters and relievers — that sticking both Capuano and Harang in the bullpen would be a waste. Some team will surely give up a prospect for one of those guys. They’re probably stuck with Lilly given his salary and recent injury history, and Belisario was too effective last summer to cut loose. I suppose Gregg could go in favor of Guerrier if the team doesn’t think the scouting reports back up the spring performance. Something has to give, though. Los Angeles simply has too many arms for too few spots right now.

rentino Perez and coach Zinedine Zidane.It’s been

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manager Mike Re Pulisic admits he’s upset being left out as he struggles to adapt to life at Chelsea.Pulisic, 21, has started just three Premier League games this season and did not even make the bench for Chelsea’s Champions League win at Lille last week.Pulisic sdmond said Wednesday’s he isn’t sure if prospect will make the opening day roster. With Rob Brantly already tabbed to be the starting catcher, Redmond isn’t sure he wants to have two catchers on the roster with little major-league experience, according to The Miami Herald.

“To have two Crystal Palace and Aston Villa know how much it will cost to Fabino Borini.AC Milan are keen to cut ties with the former Liverpool striker.Calciomercato says the Italian will cost at least €15m.Borini scored just twice in 20 appearances for Milan last season.He has had spells in England with Chelsea, Swansea City, Liverpool and Sunderland.young guys like that is not an ideal situation,” Redmond said. “I feel comfortable with ‘Skipor their clash with Arsenal and David Luiz.Luiz sealed a surprise switch from Chelsea to Arsenal last summer in an £8m deal. He will face his old club next month.“I’ve faced him a few times, he for Chelsea, me for Shakhtar, me for Chelsea, he for py,’ but at the same time I’m nervous having two young guys back there. So we’ll have to see how that plays out. All those are issues and things we have to take into account. That’s why it’s going down to the last day, to make those decisions.”

Toon have re-signed former Arsenal defender O’Conn

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pitcher put a lot of runners on in his Cactu with Arsenal fans on Sunday.The midfielder faces being stripped of the captaincy after insulting the home support against Crystal Palace.Dibrani, of SC Zofingen, is best friends with Xhaka and told Blick: “He’s not feeling well, he’s battered. “He is League start against the A’s Tuesday. He allowed five runs on eight hits with two walks over 5 2/3 innings. The right-hander allowed two runs in the first before making it through the next n doubt over brother Paul Pogba’s intentions at Manchester United.On the same evening as Pogba’s agent, Mino Raiola, launched a stunning attack online against United mae Lolley.The Daily Mail says he is at the top of Dean Smith’s list for a spot on the right wing but could cost £10million.Lolley is a Villa fan and used to watch matches from the Holte End, so a move would appeal. The 26-year-old has enjoyed the besnager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, older brother Mathias also weighed into the debate ovethree innings unscathed. But in the fifth, he gave up three runs, including a two-run homer by Yoenis Cespedes. McAllister also struck out three.McAllister, the No. 4 starter for Cleveland, has a 5.85 ERA in six spring outings.

against Real Madrid.That’s according to Okdiario’s

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pitcher left Sunday’s Cactus League start against the Rangers in the sixth inning after getting hit in the right hand by a comebacker. He was removed from the game and went to the hospital for X-rays, which came back negative.”They did a flora-scope,” Arroyo toment with West Brom for Nathan Ferguson.The Sun says reports claim a fitness issue picked up in the 19-year-old’s medical is holding up the £10million deal.Ferguson himself is having second thoughts as well.The Baggies’ board are keen to cash in on ld the Cincinnati Enquirer. “It war Frank Lampard had some positive news about Tammy Abraham after Wednesday’s draw with Valencia.The striker was helped off after an awkward fall.But Lampard says the injury isn’t bad as it was first feared.”He’s in the dressing room now. It looked qus clean.” The 36-year-old added he expects to make his next spring startArroyo allowed three runs on nine hits over 5 1/3 innings before Coutinho, it has been revealed.The Mirror says Spurs pulled out of signing Coutino on transfer deadline day – because the loan fee Barcelona demanded was too high.And Tottenham’s rivals Arsenal were also scared off by the cost of a season-long loan fthe early exit. He has a 3.71 ERA through four Cactus League outings.

ow about Liverpool’s title triumph.While he acknow

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Seemingly impressed by his strong spring performance, the are considering carrying first baseman on the opening day roster, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports.

Adamsship inside the current squad.While manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side are under arguably even more strain ahead of Sunday’s game against leaders Liverpool, ex-England star Anderson is struggling to see where the spark will come from.He told The Sun, who made his major-league debut laser losing assistant manager Mikel Arteta to Arsenal.Guardiola will trust his team of coaches to replace the new Arsenal manager. City will not appoint a new No2 immediately, with Rodolfo Borrell set to take on extra responsibility in Arteta’s absencet May, has been scorching this spring and entered Sunday hitting .342 with three homers and 11 RBI.

The Cardinals envision the slugging prospect patrolling first base on occasion, pushing regular first baseman Allen Craig to right field. That would then allow the team to provide a respite for its veteran outfield while keeping a combinas has no fear of Leroy Sane joining the club.The 18-year-old Canadian is already emerging has a hot property in the football world.He only managed six substitute appearances for Bayern last season, but is tipped to make the breakthrough to a startingtion of Matt Holliday, Carlos Beltran or Craig in the middle of the lineup.

Angels using a ‘designated runner’ for Albert Pujols in camp

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Not quite sure how this has slipped under the radar until now, but:

use courtesy runner for Albert Pujols after he singles in first inning against RHP Luke Hochevar. Hey, iInter Milan striker Lautaro Martinez has quickly been impressed by new teammate Romelu Lukaku.Lukaku has hit the ground running since his summer arrival from Manchester United. “He immediately adapted to the Coach’s ideas and the team’s style of play,” the 22-year-old told TyC Sports.“He’s a striker with incredible characteristics, he’s very powerful. “I was surprised by his sheer stature.”t’s spring training.

— Bob Dutton (@Royals_Report)

The had also given permission to Albert Pujols to use a designated runner if he reached base in their game earlier in week.

— Bob Nightengale (@BNightengale)

Ah the joys of spring training.

,m midfielder Harry Winks.The Mirror says Solskjaer is looking to reshape his squad in the close season and Winks, 24, is exactly the profile of player he wants to bring in to Old Trafford.The player’s ability and age fits the bill for Solskjaer as he 33, is coming back from offseason right-knee surgery. He returned to the lineup and is limited to DH duties at the moment, but the expect him to play first base toward the end of camp. Until then, designated rund.It marked the club’s first ever Premier League triumph at Old Trafford.Burnley goalscorer Jay Rodriguez said: “This result means everything. We worked hard and we showed quality. We stuck at it. Coming here, it is always one of the places you want ners abound.

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Team USA has bats and resolve to win WBC (but are arms enough?)

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PHOENIX — Team USA is missing maybe the best five American pitchers — , , , and — as it tries to buck its stunningly mediocre World Baseball Classic record and win in the sport America invented.

But say this for this team: They brought a group with an uncommonly patriotic bent. The 27 guys who agreed to play for Joe Torre’s team are a supremely focused, determined and even personable group that is talking a great game on the eve of the third WBC event.

“Write this, ‘We didn’t come all the way here to (bleepin’) lose,'” USA outfielder said.

More on World Baseball ClassicStories | | More coverage | | |

Torre and his veteran group of coaches, including longtime right-hand men Larry Bowa and Willie Randolph, are impressed by the competitive attitude shown by a group led by , , and other country-first guys. Randolph, in particular, said he noticed a difference between this crew and Team USA’s previous two squads, suggesting this one is singularly focused on the prize after a dismal 7-7 mark posted in the disappointing 2006 and 2009 events.

No one can claim that the USA roster is made up of only the very best American players, but Randolph pointed out the roster’s strengths include speed, versatility and other less obvious positive traits. gives any team options. can put a scare into any opposing pitcher.

Torre talked up the table-setting Rollins and . , a .300 hitter, was the ninth-place hitter in one of the exhibitions. The strong and crazy-deep 10-man bullpen, with at the end, would be the envy of any manager.

In a short few days, the staff and its players have bonded. Perhaps best of all, it also has the guys who wanted to be here representing their country, which USA officials often cite as the biggest positive.

That is, of course, another way of admitting that not all the very best and brightest stars are here. In particular, the starting pitching is solid but less than glittering.

Verlander and Kershaw are said to have shown interest in playing, his disappointment over comments by Birmingham City following his dismissal from the club.The 40-year-old was sacked on Tuesday, with the Blues reasoning that Monk did not serve the “long term interests of the club” and that they wanted to “adopt a fbut Kershaw had a hip injury late last season that allowed the to discourage him, and Verlander’s extra October innings delayed his training start, eliminating him.

Team USA retains outward confidence. But there’s concern that Team USA has a bull’s-eye on its back. And there’s more concern that many of the top starters aren’t here.

“The other teams want to beat the piss out of the U.S.,” one USA official said. ‘”Until we win, we’re not going to get all our (very) best players to come.event pitch invasions.The Liverpool Echo says Liverpool are planning to write to UEFA to voice their concerns after a pitch-invader left Adrian with an injury by gatecrashing the Super Cup celebrations.The Reds were toasting their 5-4 penalty-shootou”

The hope is that once Team USA brings home the trophy, then relays how great winning felt, no one will again decline an invite. Sometimes it’s hard to push.

is in the group of late October players from last year. is returning from a shoulder injury, an ankle injury.

, the best player in the majors last year, hasn’t earned financial security yet. So it’s understandable he didn’t go. (Word is, he consulted with Bryce Harper, who also didn’t make it).

The pitching is the real issue though. , , and are four more that couldn’t, or didn’t, make it. Contracts just signed, about to be signed or being negotiated acted as a disincentive for top pitchers. Arms are fragile, and there’s a fine line between a $150-million-plus contract and no contract at all.

Team USA seems to be doing an exemplary job not focusing on who isn’t here (except when we ask about it), though it’s obvious who’s missing. One plus: None of the other teams seems to have overwhelming starting pitching, either.

Team Mexico, who Team USA faces in its opener Friday, saved its ace for this game. Mexico used journeyman Rodrigo Lopez in its loss to Italy on Thursday. Other teams are similarly thin.

Team USA will start with 37-year-old knuckleballer , had been close to completing the deal in January for £200,000, but it has taken until now for Kilmarnock to confirm an agreement had been reached.Smith, 16, will join the Elite Development Squad with immediate effect.Kilmarnock said in a statement:whose fast knuckleball could be a major weapon, then use , and as starters. It’s a very nice group but less than optimal.

When one Team USA official was reminded how great the lineup should be, he noted, cautiously, “What happens from 60 feet, six inches is what matters.”

Dickey should give Team USA a great chance in the opener, as it appears he’s reached his prime in his late 30s, winning the National League Cy Young Award last season. He also is very much into it, which counts, too.

“I’m here because this is one of the greater privileges of my athletic career. And that’s how I see it,” Dickey said.

Team USA will try to make up for what it lacks in established arms with bats and attitude. It’s a group that loves the idea of representing its country, which can’t hurt.

“We are not here to get out of spring training. We’re not here to go on a little vacation,” Wright said. “It’s time for us to win. A lot of other teams have been preparing longer. But pride will kick in. We are 0 and 2. We want to be the team that snaps that.”

Randolph, Wright’s first major-league manager with the , is thrilled at how the star third baseman has grown into a leader. Others, too, are here because they are excited about it.

New outfielder personally called Torre to beg his way onto the team as a reserve. first baseman rushed over from Surprise, Ariz., when went out with a wrist injury.

Pride is already starting to kick in.

“It’s our game,” Torre said. “That doesn’t mean other teams can’t play it. But we’re here to win. We’re here to get to San Francisco. We’re interested in moving on. Our goal is long-term, long range.”

Their hearts and their intentions are in the right place. The only question is whether they have enough arms to do the job.

ith the effort that Mesut Ozil has been showing in

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Dodgers starting pitcher turned in a decent performance and picked up a win in his second start of spring trainiybala as they push him towards Manchester United.Sky Italia says the Old Lady have takeir shock 1-0 defeat at Levante.Zidane has urged his Real Madrid side to stay focused on the task at hand after dropping more points in the LaLiga Santander title race.After drawing against Celta Vigo last weekend, Los Blancos were beaten by Levante on tough action as they want striker Dybala out.They are keen on getting £90million-rated Romelu Lukaku before the English transfer window closes next Thursday.Dybng Thursday afternoon against the Angels in Cactus League play. Kershaw struck out seven Liverpool for their handling of Naby Keita.The midfielder has returned injured to Melwood this week after competing with Guinea at the African Cup of Nations.He has undergone treatment with the Reds medical staff, but now that his side has reached t in three innings of work, but allowed three runs — two earned in a 10-8 victory. His ERA is at 7.20 after two outings.

title race.The ice-cool Belgian knows the champion

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Baltimore outfield hopeful homered late in Saturday’s Grapefruit League opener against Minnesota. Robinson was also solid in the outfield, according to manager Buck Syed enough to earn a move to Real Madrid, according to former Los Blancos winger Steve McManaman.The Frenchman has played in just seven Premier League games this season, and talks over a move to Real have persisted.McManaman told HorseRacing.net: “Hehowalter, reports MASNSports.com. “He played the elements well today,” Showalter said, referencing the wind blowing out to left field. “Tray had a good day. Hitting a home run is RB Leipzig have made a second offer for Everton winger Ademola Lookman.The German club’s initial bid was worth £13m.The Daily Mail says they have now returned with a £22.5m offer for the English winger.21-year-old Lookman enjoyed a fruitful loan spell with Leipzig in 2017/18.not something Trayvon’s foreign to. We like him.f Lionel Messi leaves LaLiga for… Australia!The Barcelona star was this evening named the Ballon d’Or winner for 2019 – for the sixth time.”The future of Real Madrid depends on Messi going to play in Australia,” Rajoy explained in a book promotion I talked to him about the fact that, just because he came off the (40-man) roster doesn’t change the way we feel about him. He’s going to get an opportunity here to show what he can do. Switch-hitting guys that can play three spots are hard to find, and especially at his age (25). He’s still a young man.”

ar Neymar returning to Spain.Former club Barcelona

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The Sun-Sentinel reports Marlins reliever is considered the favorite to open the year as the team’s closer. “He’s definitely the frontrunner for the closer job,” manager Mike Redmond said. “I’ve watched r United fans to be patient.The Norwegian took over in December but was unable to stop United from finishing in sixth-place last season.And Solskjaer says supporters might be patient with his efforts to rebuild the club back into Premier League titlehim pitch on video. He’s funky — it’s a funky little delivery. He did a nice job [last year].” Cishek said he’s been working on adding a changeup to his repertoire. “Hopefully, early on in spring training I’ll be able to throw it a bunch and have another tool for lefties,” Cishek said. “Every year I come into spring training ready to go. I attack hitters out there 100 percent all the time. I don’tindegaard admits Manchester United players weren’t sure about David de Gea when he first arrived.And the Dane has pinpointed the moment Deger Jurgen Klopp admits he expected a defensive showing from Napoli on Tuesday night.The Italians fought for a 1-1 draw at Anfield, frustrating the hosts with their gallant and disciplined defending.Speaking after the game, Klopp said: “Did I expect Gea turned things around for himself at Old Trafford.He told the London Evening Standard: “He got way too much really take it easy.”

discussions have sparked Manchester United’s revi

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The Nationals announced Tuesdacastle United great Alan Shearer remains unimpressed by Jurgen Klopp’s decision to skip their FA Cup meet the buyout clause of Swansea Citter City are unhappy with Burnley’s asking price for James Tarkowski.Sky Sports says Brendan Rodgers is eager to sign a replacement for Harry Maguire, but Leicester have made it clear they won’t be held to ransom and they have concerns there isn’t vay boss Graham Potter.The Guardian says the Seagulls “have agreed to pay a £2million compensation” fee to the Championship outfit.Potter is said to have told Swansea that he wants the Brighton job as he wants to defeat of Shrewsbury Town.Currently away on his Premier League break, Klopp picked a team comprised entirely of youngsters for his side’s FA Cup foury they signed pitchers , , Brandon Mann and and infielder to minor-league deals. All of them have been invited to spring training as non-roster invitees.

Report: Red Sox open to dealing outfielder Jacoby Ellsbury

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Thlost Diego Costa for the remainder of the season.The centre-forward has suffered a herniated cervical disc injury and there’s fears it’s severity could leave him sidelined until April – effectively ending his campaign.In a statement this morning, Atle are open to dealing outfielder , to Pete Abraham of the Boston Globe. 

The signing of gives the team some flexibility in thegning Zlatan Ibrahimovic from LA Galaxy.Former United striker Ibrahimovic joked he is “ready” to help his old team out if they are in need of striking reinforcement and said – despite being 37 – he could still play in the Premier League.Asked about t outfield. If Ellsbury is dealt, Victorino can slide over to center field. The Los Angeles FC have bought out half of a 20 per cent stake held by Malaysian businessman Vincent Tan in a deal which values the franchise at more than US$700 million, according to Bloomberg, reports, /.The apparent agreement makes LAFC the highest v team would then sign another outfielder to play right. Abraham mentioned re-signing as an option. 

The 29-year-old Ellsbury struggled through an injury-riddled season, playing in just 74 games. He failed to live up to his breakout 2011, hitting just .271/.313/.370. Ellsbury is arbitration-eligible this year, but will be a free-agent at the conclusion of the 2013 season. 

For more up-to-the-minute news and analysis on the latest rumors from bloggers Chris Cwik, Jack Moore and R.J. White, follow

B.J. Upton visited Braves, Phillies, but leaves them, maybe others waiting

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Waiting on B.J. Upton isn’t exactly like waiting on Godot. But it’s not going as quickly as some might hope, either.

Upton, the young center fielder with speed and power, will likely have a decision about where he will sign sometime this week, reported Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times. But others counter: Who knows?

As Topkin rightly said, one would think Upton would decide sometime this week. But the others who know there are no deadlines aren’t wrong, either. When it comes to free agency, there are no rules and no guarantees (except the money).

Upton visited with both the and at least 10 days ago. So it’s natural to believe he’ll be the first star player in his prime to sign.

Some may wonder why it’s taking so long. But by the standards of free agency, it’s still very early in the season.

Not one of the players likely to get one of the 10 biggest contracts this winter has signed yet, so Upton is right on schedule.

That doesn’t mean there aren’t some anxious folks.

As for where he might wind up, let’s assume the Braves and Phillies are at least two of the finalists. But there could be others. Jim Bowden of Sirius/XM suggested there’s a third team in the mix, a mystery team if you will.

The mystery team can never be discounted. The Giants and possibly the Nats also seek a center fielder, while the Yankees, Red Sox, Rangers, Mariners, Brewers and Orioles are among other teams consideralkeeper Norberto Murara – better known as NetoThe Gunners are searching for a replacement for Petr Cech, who will retire from football after the Europa League final.According to Plaza Deportivo, Emery wants to bring in 29-year-old to serve as Bernd ing signing an outfielder. (The Phillies, Braves, Red Sox and Giants are actually candidates to sign two outfielders.)

Whatever the case, Upton has at least two very good choices we known about. The Braves are a perennial winner, as are the Phillies, with the one drawback being that they are in the same division as the Nationals, who are obviously on the rise.

Both would allow the Norfolk Va.-raised Upton to remain on the East Coast, though they would entail a league switch for the longtime Tampa Bay Ray.

It seems pretty clear the Braves have Upton, 28, as their top center-field choice, even over their own , whether that’s because of Upton’s youth, his power or his expected price. (Upton hit a career-highena believes his old club can successfully defend their Champions League crown.Dossena says the Reds are well on track for a Premier League and Champions League Double this season.He told TMW Radio: “They have been waiting for the title for a long ti 28 home runs in 2012 to go with 31 stolen bases, which marked the fifth straight time he’s stolen at least 30. But while he’s talented, he’s imperfect; his on-base percentage dipped below .300 [.298] for the first time in his career.)

With the Phillies, it’s not quite as clear whether he’s their No. 1 choice or their 1A. Some believe the Phillies have Upton at the top of their list for his power, while others think they’d be just as happy to land Bourn, a former Phillie who is beloved in the organization as much for his winning personality as his play.

It’s possible the Phillies see Upton as the better fit sincece for Eberechi Eze.The Daily Express says Tottenham are interested in signin Eze, but they’ve been put off by the £20million price tag being quoted by the west London club. Jose Mourinho will be aiming to make his first signing for the club over th he is righthanded and could be plugged into the middle of a mostly lefty lineup. It’s also possible they are mostly involved now due to the timing of the two players’ talks.

Upton is going to sign first.

At least we think he is.

Report: Ichiro wants to stay in New York

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wants to return to the next season, to the New York Post’s Joel Sherman.

Sherman spoke to a person close to Ichiro, who said the 38-year-old outfielder really enjoyed playing for the team. Ichiro t allocation for the Champions League final against Tottenham.Both the Reds and Spurs were given 16,613 tickets each for the clash at the Wanda Metropolitano in Madrid on June 1.That is despite the new stadium boasting a capacity of 68,000, with the liked that the atmosphere in the clubhouse was “professional” and that many of the players on the teamhis game on two Brazilians.Lampey left Chelsea for Brighton last week.He spoke about his personal qualities and the players he has admired during his development, which includes two famous Brazilians.Lamptey said, “I’m very hardworking and will giv are close to his age.

It may not take a lot of money to entice Ichiro to stay, either. According to Sherman’s source, Ichiro would likely decline a larger contract in order to stay where he’s happy. He allegedly deferred about $5 million per year on his last longterm deal in order to stay in . Sherman said that a one-year deal worth betw with Southampton.Adrian suffered a freak ankle injury after his penalty shoot-out heroics against Chelsea in the UEFA Super Cup final when he was clattered by a pitch invader.“Today I feel much better,” he told the official club website.“It was een $5 million and $8 million could be enough for Ichiro to re-sign. He added that Ichiro may want an option for the following season. Since joining the Yankees, Ichiro has hit .283/.307/.390 in 240 plate appearances. 

For more up-to-the-minute news and analysis on the latest rumors from bloggers Chris Cwik, Jack Moore and R.J. White, follow .

AL wild-card preview: Can Orioles tame Rangers’ bats?

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(AP)

In very different ways, these are two of the most surprising teams in baseball. Almost no one expected the Orioles to finish anywhere but last in the AL East, and the Rangers were all but universally regarded as the best team in baseball. The O’s have shocked us all, and while the Rangers can still achieve their ultimate goal, they’re not quite the team we thought they’d be.

Those dynamics will be in play, as and meet in the AL wild-card game. The ara is staying calm over talk of a return to the Premier League.The former Arsenal trainee has been in top form for Steven Gerrard’s side, since his move from Dundee in January – and has been linked with Aston Villa.Going up to Scotland’s been good fwinner earns the right to face the in the ALDS. 

The visiting Orioles haven’t yet decided whether they’ll pitch lefty (4.02 ERA, 174 2/3 IP with and Baltimore this season) or right-hander (2.11 ERA, 38 1/3 IP), but the Rangers have named (3.90 ERA, 191 1/3 IP) as their wild-card starter. 

The rookie Darvish has yet to face the Orioles. While not specific to his Friday opponent, it’s worth noting that Darvish has been a wholly different pitcher . Over that seven-start span, he’s posted a 2.13 ERA and struck out 59 batters against just 10 walks. 

In his career, Saunders has been cuffed around pretty badly by Brendan Rodgers has spoken highly of Liverpool playmaker Adam Lallana.The 31-year-old will become a free agent at the end of the season, with Leicester linked with a move, along with Tottenham and Arsenal.”Adam is a fantastic player and one I broughtcurrent Rangers hitters — cuffed around to the tune of .347/.407/.669. As with most numbers of this nature, we’re talking about a pretty small sample size, but that’s still a source of concern.

The rookie Johnson, meanwhile, has just one appearance against Texas, and it was in relief: 1.0 IP, 2 H, 1 R, 1 K, 0 BB. It’s worth noting that the Ranger offense this season has been slightly less effective against rin’t rule out leaving Barcelona this summer.Away with Brazil for the Copa America, the midfielder says any move, however, won’t be considered until after the tournament.Coutinho said, “Many things that come out are not true. “I am totally focused on tght-handers, so that’s a possible point for Johnson. 

Texas won five of seven games against the Orioles this season, and in those seven games they out-scored the O’s by a margin of 56-24. They last met for a three-game set that concluded on Aug. 22, and the Rangers took two of three in Arlington. 

… they lean heavily on a rested bullpen to keep the Texas bats in check.

The Rangers can rake in any environment but especially in their hitter-friendly home digs. Given the suspect nature of either Baltimore starter, a quick hook seems likely. Then it will fall to the bullpen to keep runs off the board.

The good news is that the Oriole bullpen has a very strong arrangement right now, and a number of their very best relievers — namely , and  — are coming off a day of rest.   

… Darvish pitches like he did down the stretch.

It’s that simple, really. The one wrinkle is whether Darvish’s recent neck soreness, which caused him to miss a recent scheduled start, will affect him in any way. If he’s on, there may be little the Orioles can do. 

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