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10:00 PM ET, June 20, 2013


 Top News: 
Troy Renck / On the Rox:
Jeff Francis accepts minor-league assignment for Rockies, heads to Colorado Springs  —  Jeff Francis pitches in spring training a few years back.  He accepted a minor-league assignment to remain with the Rockies organization.  (Hyoung Chang, The Denver Post)
Discussion: MLB Rumors and HardballTalk
Troy E. Renck / Denver Post:
Jeff Francis leaves Colorado Rockies to make room for Roy Oswalt
Marc Topkin / Tampa Bay Times:
Rays win first of season at Fenway  —  BOSTON — Jose Molina provided the entertainment by racing home with the go-ahead run.  Wil Myers produced some history with his first extra-base hit and RBIs.  —  But the most important development in Wednesday's 6-2 victory over the Red Sox …
Discussion: USA Today and HardballTalk
Associated Press:
Jennings, Hellickson Help Rays Top Red Sox, 6-2
Discussion: Boston Globe and DRaysBay
Chris Abshire /
Crowe to disabled list after collision with wall  —  HOUSTON — The Astros placed right-fielder Trevor Crowe on the 15-day disabled list after he sprained the AC joint in his right shoulder during the sixth inning of Thursday's 7-4 win over the Brewers.  —  Crowe smashed the shoulder …
Discussion: The Crawfish Boxes
Jon Niese leaves game with ‘left shoulder discomfort’  —  Jon Niese was forced to leave Thursday night's game in the fourth inning with an apparent shoulder injury.  —  Update - 9:19: The Mets have announced that Niese is suffering from “left shoulder discomfort.”
Discussion: Amazin' Avenue
Benoit Leyland's first option in closer situation  —  DETROIT — Before Jose Valverde rejoined the Tigers at the end of April, manager Jim Leyland had a bullpen by committee, but had Joaquin Benoit as his preferred option.  —  “On a lot of the days, if it's doable, I think [Joaquin] …
Discussion: HardballTalk
Associated Press:
Ian Kinsler helps Rangers repel A's, close AL West gap  —  ARLINGTON, Texas — When the ball caromed away from Texas Rangers center fielder Craig Gentry, he quickly recovered to get it and throw to shortstop Elvis Andrus.  The game was over after a perfect relay to the plate.
Discussion: Athletics Nation and ESPN
Lester Munson / ESPN:
San Jose suit appears to be strong  —  Major League Baseball should be taking the city's antitrust lawsuit very seriously  —  San Jose's lawsuit against Major League Baseball could easily become commissioner Bud Selig's worst nightmare.  —  Unless the Lords of Baseball voluntarily pave …
Discussion: HardballTalk
John Harper / NY Daily News:
Mets manager Terry Collins, now armed with pitchers Matt Harvey and Zack Wheeler, should stay with Mets  —  Harvey and Wheeler on Tuesday provided a reminder that talent has been the issue, and if that is finally going to change now, Collins surely deserves the chance to make something of it.
Discussion: Metsblog
Jon Heyman /
(USATSI)  —  NEW YORK — Alex Rodriguez's recent progress is said by people around the Yankees to have been dramatic, with one person calling it “fantastic” and another even speculating A-Rod could possibly begin to play rehab games just after the All-Star break.
Mark Gonzales / Chicago Tribune:
Sox's Ventura in Manto's corner  —  White Sox manager Robin Ventura on the team's mood during its slump.  —  MINNESOTA — Manager Robin Ventura endorsed hitting coach Jeff Manto in the wake of the Chicago White Sox's offensive struggles.  —  “Even when it goes like this, you look at me …
Discussion: HardballTalk
Master Tesfatsion /
Soria begins rehab assignment in Double-A  —  ARLINGTON — Joakim Soria will begin his rehab assignment with Double-A Frisco on Thursday.  Soria is scheduled to pitch an inning in the first of multiple appearances with the team.  —  Soria threw two live batting-practice sessions during …
Discussion: HardballTalk
David Pinto /
Living Up to Expectations  —  Oswaldo Arcia homered for the Twins this afternoon, scoring the first run of the game in the second inning as the White Sox trail 3-1 in the fourth.  The 22-year-old rookie is off to a nice start, with 33 hits, fifteen of them going for extra bases.
Discussion: Twinkie Town
Papelbon blows save, debates Phils' fundamentals  —  Every time you think the Phillies are about to turn the corner and put something together they trip over their own feet.  —  They were one out away from completing a three-game sweep of the Washington Nationals on Wednesday night …
Discussion: and HardballTalk
Yankees Impressed With First Look at LA's Puig  —  NEW YORK — The New York Yankees had a first-hand look at Cuban rookie sensation Yasiel Puig of the Los Angeles Dodgers on Wednesday and came away mightily impressed.  —  “He hits the ball hard, I can tell you that.
Discussion: True Blue LA
Associated Press:   Mattingly, Dodgers Salvage Split at Yankee Stadium
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 More News: 
Alden Gonzalez /
Pujols finally feels like the Albert of old
Discussion: HardballTalk
Bill Ladson /
Unlike last year, Nats may be Deadline players
Discussion: MLB Rumors
NY Daily News:
Joe Torre's daughter Cristina saves falling baby with perfect catch
Canadian Press:
Johnson's three-run homer helps Braves beat Mets
Discussion: Amazin' Avenue
 Earlier Picks: 
Fox Sports:
Manny ‘invigorated’ for return to US
Associated Press:
Chris Davis' 2 HRs Help Orioles Blast Tigers 13-3
Aaron Gleeman / HardballTalk:
Astros sign No. 1 pick Mark Appel

From WeSmirch:

Glenn Whipp / Los Angeles Times:
38 women have come forward to accuse director James Toback of sexual harassment.

Damon, Clooney say they never saw Weinstein's ‘darkness,’ vow to fight sexual misconduct
Ewan McGregor Splits From Wife of 22 Years — As He's Spotted Kissing Costar Mary Elizabeth Winstead

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