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2:10 PM ET, September 14, 2018

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 Top News: 
David Schoenfield / ESPN:
Trevor Story is pushing Javier Baez in crowded NL MVP race  —  The Rockies pretty much buried the Diamondbacks with a 10-3 victory at Coors Field on Thursday to take three out of four in the series.  Back on Aug. 22, the Diamondbacks led the NL West by 1 1/2 games and FanGraphs gave …
Discussion: Baseball Prospectus
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Mark Gonzales / Chicago Tribune:
Can Javier Baez carry the Cubs to the NL Central title?  —  Photos of Cubs infielder Javier Baez.  —  Chicago Tribune  —  When first baseman Anthony Rizzo was sidelined with back spasms early in the season, Javier Baez seemed immune to a 28-degree wind chill when he ripped a game-tying …
Steve Rosenbloom / Chicago Tribune:
Column: Time to join Cubs manager Joe Maddon for another episode of ‘Joverthinking It’  —  Cubs manager Joe Maddon discusses Pedro Strop's hamstring injury, which he suffered running the bases against Washington.  (Paul Sullivan/Chicago Tribune)  —  Chicago Tribune
Paul Sullivan / Chicago Tribune:
3 things we learned from the Cubs' 4-3 win over the Nationals  —  Cubs closer Pedro Strop discusses the hamstring injury he suffered in the team's 4-3 win at Washington on Sept. 13, 2018.  (Paul Sullivan/Chicago Tribune)  —  Chicago Tribune  —  Here are three things we learned …
Discussion: MLB Baseball News …
Paul Sullivan / Chicago Tribune:   Kris Bryant helps Cubs come through in crucial game against Nationals
Michael Kelly / Associated Press:
Arenado, Story homer to help Rockies beat Diamondbacks 10-3  —  DENVER (AP) - Nolan Arenado and Trevor Story homered, Kyle Freeland pitched effectively into the seventh, and the Colorado Rockies beat the Arizona Diamondbacks 10-3 on Thursday to extend their NL West lead.
RELATED:
Nick Piecoro / Arizona Republic:
Last Slide  —  DENVER — Eleven years ago, the Colorado Rockies sat 4 1/2 games out of a playoff spot with 15 games to play.  They wound up in the World Series.  Four years later, the Tampa Bay Rays were 2 1/2 out with five to play.  They got in.  The next year it was the Oakland Athletics who were five back with nine remaining.
Discussion: Baseball Prospectus
Toronto Sun:   Astros return from another successful trip to face D-backs
Dave Clark / Cincinnati.com:
Former Reds exec Bob Miller of Nats auctions World Series ring for colleague with leukemia  —  Washington Nationals assistant general manager Bob Miller, who spent nine seasons with the Cincinnati Reds as vice president and assistant general manager, put the World Series ring he earned …
RELATED:
Nick Piecoro / Arizona Republic:   Former Diamondbacks executive to auction off 2001 World Series ring to help sick colleague
Arizona Republic:   Game Day: Diamondbacks visit Houston to take on defending World Series champion Astros
ESPN:
Brewers in thick of playoff race as they host Pirates  —  MILWAUKEE — Gio Gonzalez made a strong first impression on his new teammates.  —  Acquired by Milwaukee on Aug. 31 from Washington, where he'd gone 7-11 with a 4.57 ERA, Gonzalez returned to the mound after a 10-day rest and allowed …
RELATED:
Eddie Matz / ESPN:
'It's like group therapy': How a rookie skipper won over the Cards clubhouse  —  Somehow, Mike Shildt got the St. Louis Cardinals to buy into “Ball Talk.”  —  It would've been all too easy for the Cardinals players, especially the veterans, to roll their eyes.
Mike Puma / New York Post:
Jose Reyes hopes to be next to David Wright in his finale … Before David Wright announced he would return and start one last game in his Mets career, on Sept. 29, he found Jose Reyes in the clubhouse Thursday and shared the plan.  —  “We were both crying, it was a tough moment,” …
Discussion: Sporting News and Amazin' Avenue
RELATED:
Kevin Skiver / CBSSports.com:
David Wright gives an emotional press conference indicating plans to retire and Mets fans on Twitter are devastated
Associated Press:   Baseball notebook: Cubs' Rizzo wears uniform on team flight
Andy Clayton / New York Daily News:   David Wright will be activated for the Mets' final homestand, will start at third base on Sept. 29
ESPN:
Mariners hope to stay on Cruz control vs. Angels  —  Nelson Cruz has done plenty of damage against the Los Angeles Angels in his 14-year career, and the Seattle Mariners designated hitter will look to cause more Friday night in the third contest of the four-game series.
RELATED:
Joe Reedy / MLB Baseball News, Scores …:
Cruz, Leake lead Mariners to 8-2 victory over Angels
Discussion: Lookout Landing
Marc Topkin / Tampa Bay Times:
How big is Rays-A's this weekend?  Well ...  That the Rays are playing a series with even the slightest amount of playoff implications in mid-September is somewhat of an accomplishment.  —  How big the matchup with the A's that starts tonight at the Trop is depends on your perspective.
RELATED:
ESPN:   Rays try to close gap versus A's
ESPN:   A's starter Trevor Cahill scratched with strained muscle in back
Rick Hummel / St. Louis Post-Dispatch:
Cardinals notes: Molina recovers enough to play  —  Yadier Molina, hardly the fleetest of players, ran his way into the Cardinals' lineup Thursday night with his pre-game work.  Molina, recovering from a strained left hamstring, showed manager Mike Shildt and head athletic trainer Adam Olsen enough …
RELATED:
Rick Hummel / St. Louis Post-Dispatch:   Weaver becoming nonfactor on Cards' pitching staff
Scott Boeck / USA Today:
MLB playoff picture: Updated look at division, wild card races  —  With just more than two weeks remaining, the Boston Red Sox are the only team to officially punch their ticket to the postseason.  —  The Red Sox still have work to do to clinch the American League East, although that …
Bill Madden / New York Daily News:
If Yankees aren't home for wild-card game, Aaron Boone will be to blame  —  If there is one thing Aaron Boone has demonstrated to us in his maiden season as Yankee manager it's that he's a half-full guy.  —  Yes, the Yankees lost two out of three in Minnesota to the Triple-A Twins …
RELATED:
George A. King III / New York Post:
Hal Steinbrenner throws support behind Aaron Boone amid swoon
Discussion: MLB Trade Rumors and Sporting News
Daily Record:
Luis Severino, Masahiro Tanaka or J.A. Happ: Who starts New York Yankees' wild-card game?
Rob Longley / Toronto Sun:
Fenway farce: Blue Jays swept away in Beantown thanks to Solarte error  —  BOSTON - Fenway Park, cloaked in all its historic and old-school splendour, has been a disaster for the Blue Jays this season in almost every way related to the box score.  —  In the midst of their worst season in almost a decade …
RELATED:
ESPN:   Yankees need to come up big against Jays
Ramona Shelburne / ESPN:
Matt Kemp is finally home again in LA  —  There is no easy way to tell a player he's been traded.  But generally whatever awkwardness or emotion an executive feels from those calls is offset by the excitement of the calls welcoming the players joining the club.
Jeff Wilson / Fort Worth Star-Telegram:
And the Star-Telegram's No. 1 Rangers prospect is ...  The debate over who should be the No. 1 Texas Rangers prospect in the Star-Telegram's rankings came down to the value of a position player or the importance of developing a front-line starting pitcher.  —  And there was debate on who should be No. 1 among the two groups.
Discussion: Lone Star Ball
David Murphy / Philly.com:
As a season wanes, a complex set of decisions awaits the Phillies |  David Murphy  —  Truth be told, you never really know.  Not in baseball.  Shortstop Jean Segura was an All-Star at the age of 23 with Milwaukee, then one of the worst hitters in the majors for two seasons.
Rob Tornoe / Philly.com:
Ex-Phillies pitcher Dan Plesac: A day in the life of an MLB Network analyst  —  It was an eventful evening in baseball, featuring a walk-off home run, a near no-hitter, an October-like match-up in a tight divisional race and the final game of a sweep that all but closed the door on the Phillies' hopes of playing this postseason.
 
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 More News: 
ESPN:
Braves try to secure division title in homestand starting with Nationals
Marlowe Alter / Detroit Free Press:
Detroit Tigers' Casey Mize will be top-10 prospect in MLB, analyst says
 Earlier Picks: 
Mike DiGiovanna / Los Angeles Times:
Angels' Mike Trout makes a push toward his first Gold Glove award
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