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6:05 PM ET, April 7, 2012

Ballbug

 Top News: 
Anthony DiComo / MLB.com:
Duda's day: Slugger's two homers carry Mets  —  NEW YORK — Mets manager Terry Collins spent much of Spring Training lauding Lucas Duda, he of prodigious raw power but a noticeable lack of confidence and experience.  What Collins envisioned for his right fielder was something like this.
Associated Press:
Nationals rally again, beat Cubs 7-4  —  CHICAGO - Adam LaRoche homered and matched a career-high with four hits, and the Washington Nationals again rallied late against Kerry Wood and Carlos Marmol, scoring five runs in the eighth to beat the Chicago Cubs 7-4 on Sunday.
Discussion: Bleed Cubbie Blue
Bill Madden / NY Daily News:
Joe Girardi and Joe Maddon play game of chess in bizarre Opening Day game between Yankees and Tampa Bay Rays  —  Managers save nothing and neither does Mo Rivera  —  Tampa Bay Rays' Carlos Pena watches the flight of the ball after hitting a grand-slam home run and might as well thank Joe Girardi for loading bases for him.
Discussion: DRaysBay and the joy of sox
RELATED:
Bryan Hoch / MLB.com:   Pineda plays catch, but April return unlikely
Associated Press:
Blue Jays Topple Indians 7-4 in 12 Innings  —  CLEVELAND (AP) — Rajai Davis hit a two-run double in the 12th inning, Toronto rallied for the second straight game against Cleveland's bullpen and the Blue Jays beat the Indians in extra innings again, 7-4 on Saturday.
Discussion: Yahoo! Sports
Associated Press:
Brandon Phillips mum on contract  —  CINCINNATI — Reds All-Star second baseman Brandon Phillips is keeping quiet while closing in on a contract extension.  —  Phillips said on Saturday before a game against Miami that he's not going to discuss an extension that's been in the works since last season.
Kristie Rieken / Associated Press:
Rockies get 5-3 opening day win over Astros  —  HOUSTON—Pinch runner Eric Young scored the go-ahead run on an error in the eighth inning and Troy Tulowitzki homered in the ninth to lift the Colorado Rockies to a 5-3 win over the mistake-prone Houston Astros on Friday night.
Discussion: Purple Row
RELATED:
Brian McTaggart / MLB.com:
For 10 Astros, Opening Day extra special
Associated Press:   Houston SS Lowrie placed on 15-day DL
Peter Abraham / Boston Globe:
Crawford close to getting in a game  —  DETROIT — Carl Crawford's return from surgery on his left wrist is picking up steam in Fort Myers.  —  The left fielder continues to take batting practice on the field and is getting into an extended spring training game is “imminent” according to Bobby Valentine.
Discussion: NESN.com
Troy E. Renck / Denver Post:
Colorado Rockies general manager Dan O'Dowd addresses several issues on opening day  —  HOUSTON — The Rockies are going to score runs.  Preventing them?  That's a concern even for the man responsible for piecing together the opening-day roster.  —  “I thought there was a lot of trust …
Ken Gurnick / MLB.com:
Magic vs. Kemp?  LA slugger is ready  —  SAN DIEGO — It might have to happen over the dead body of incoming CEO Stan Kasten, what with the injury exclusion clauses in today's contracts.  —  But the mythical one-on-one hoop challenge concocted in the Dodgers clubhouse has been further fueled …
Discussion: Yahoo! Sports
Kimberley A. Martin / Newsday:
Nieuwenhuis promoted after Torres is put on DL  —  After playing in only one regular-season game, the Mets' new centerfielder is on the disabled list.  —  The Mets announced Friday that Andres Torres was put on the 15-day DL with a strained left calf, an injury suffered in their Opening Day win over Atlanta on Thursday at Citi Field.
Discussion: MetsBlog.com
Fox Sports:
Uecker mourns loss of 52-year-old son  —  MILWAUKEE (AP)  —  Hall of Fame broadcaster Bob Uecker's son Steve has died from complications related to San Joaquin Valley fever.  —  The Brewers issued a statement saying Steve Uecker passed away Friday at a hospital in Milwaukee.  He was 52.
Associated Press:
Mariners Top A's 7-3 in Stateside Opening Night  —  OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) — Yoenis Cespedes leaned back, put all his might into one powerful swing and sent a soaring shot over the fence in left-center field and off the second-deck facade.  —  And with that, the Cuban defector finally arrived at his new home.
Peter Abraham / Boston Globe:
Lucchino willing to up payroll  —  Goal is to improve pitching, prospects  —  DETROIT - Red Sox president Larry Lucchino said on Friday the team would be willing to add to the payroll to improve the pitching staff.  —  In an appearance on MLB Network Radio, Lucchino said the team would be over the luxury tax threshold regardless.
Discussion: HardballTalk
RELATED:
Associated Press:
Royals Shut Down Pujols, but Lose Opener to Angels  —  ANAHEIM, Calif. (AP) — Albert Pujols was little trouble for Bruce Chen and Aaron Crow in the Royals' opener.  —  Nobody in the Kansas City lineup was any trouble at all for Jered Weaver, and that's why the Royals are still starting the season in a hole.
Discussion: 6-4-2
 
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 More News: 
Mike Axisa / FanGraphs Baseball:
2012 Organizational Rankings: #1 - NY Yankees
Tim Siedell / The Huffington Post:
Baseball Is Life  —  Another baseball season is upon us.
Corey Brock / MLB.com:
Venable focused on effective baserunning
Discussion: True Blue LA and Gaslamp Ball
Bob Baum / Associated Press:
Young, Goldschmidt HR vs Lincecum, D-backs beat SF
Discussion: Yahoo! Sports
 Earlier Picks: 
Associated Press:
Dunn ties record with eighth opening-day homer
Chris Jenkins / Associated Press:
Cards hit 4 HRs off Gallardo, pound Brewers 11-5
David Ginsburg / Associated Press:
Arrieta, Markakis lead Orioles over Twins 4-2
 

 
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