Here’s your Wednesday baseball news long toss covering stories on and off the field.
- Right now, the Chicago White Sox are five games behind the Tigers in the American League Central. It's all happening, they're in the moment, "Lose Yourself" is playing in the background. Oh what's that? Their manager, Ozzie Guillen, is fixated on getting a contract extension? How does that make you fell, general manager Kenny Williams? "If I’m asked that question one more time, I’m going to throw up." Cool situation! Cool pennant race mentality!
- One man likely not looking for a contract extension is Baltimore Orioles president of baseball operations, Andy MacPhail. The former Twins exec, who has been with the O's since 2007, will reportedly leave the club at the end of October when his current deal expires. Some have suggested Brian Cashman could be in the running to replace MacPhail, while still others posit that this could set the stage for a power grab by manager Buck Showalter. For his part, Showalter had this to say about MacPhail's tenure, "I just hope for the best for Andy. This is not one person's fault. You can't be this bad, for this long, without multiple reasons." Heartwarming stuff.
- Today, on Grantland (as in, the website you are reading), Rany Jazayerli takes a look at how the Phillies dominance might have expiration date. Seems there's a lot of reading of tea leaves and chicken bones going on, because over on the SweetSpot blog, David Schoenfield sees dark days on the horizon in Minnesota.
- Clay Buchholz is back to engaging in some "baseball activity." This could mean so many things: spitting, scratching himself, laughing at Jed Lowrie for having "Stylo" by Gorillaz as his entrance music. In this case, it actually just means he's playing catch. The Red Sox starter has been on the disabled list since June with a stress fracture in back.
- Some bright young things are on their way to the show. Stephen Strasburg is returning to the Nationals on Sept. 6. And Yankees prospect Jesus Montero is expected to be called up soon.
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