Bidding battle begins for star Japanese pitcher Tanaka

Rakuten Eagles pitcher Masahiro Tanaka went 24-0 this season. Photo: AP

A 30-day window for Major League Baseball clubs to make offers to Masahiro Tanaka, star pitcher for Japan Series champions Rakuten Eagles, has begun with several expected bidders.

Friday, 27 December, 2013, 11:51am

Brilliant Verlander pitches Tigers into ALCS

Detroit Tigers pitcher Justin Verlander dominates the Oakland Athletics in game five. Photo: Detroit Free Press/MCT

With the season on the line once more in Oakland, Justin Verlander pitched another game five gem.

11 Oct 2013 - 12:31pm

Cardinals and Dodgers collide after dramatic remodelling

Starting pitcher Michael Wacha has been a star for the Cardinals. Photo: AP

Two of Major League Baseball’s most storied franchises will meet with a World Series berth at stake when the St Louis Cardinals and Los Angeles Dodgers open the best-of-seven National League Championship Series in St Louis on Friday.

11 Oct 2013 - 11:20am

Former All-Star Andy Pafko dies at 92

Milwaukee Braves' Andy Pafko in 1953. Photo: AP

Andy Pafko, a four-time All-Star who played on the last Chicago Cubs team to reach the World Series and was the famously forlorn outfielder who watched Bobby Thomson’s “Shot Heard ‘Round the World” sail over the left-field wall during the 1951 National League playoff, has died. He was 92.

10 Oct 2013 - 3:16pm

Cardinals beat Pirates to win National League Championship

The Pirates' Pedro Alvarez after striking out for the final out of game five of a National League division series against the Cardinals on Wednesday. Photo: AFP

St. Louis advanced to the National League Championship Series by beating Pittsburgh 6-1 in their winner-take-all game on Wednesday, clinching the NL Division Series 3-2.

Cardinals’ pitcher Adam Wainwright pitched a complete game in his second dominant win of the series, while David Freese and Matt Adams both hit two-run homers for the hosts.

10 Oct 2013 - 1:34pm

Red Sox beat Rays to advance to AL championship

Red Sox's Shane Victorino on first base as Rays first baseman James Loney catches the throw. Photo: AP

Shane Victorino’s infield single snapped a seventh-inning tie and journeyman Craig Breslow gave Boston a huge boost out of the bullpen, sending the Red Sox into the AL championship series with a 3-1 victory over the Tampa Bay Rays on Tuesday night.

9 Oct 2013 - 1:51pm

Tigers fight back to force game five decider

Detroit Tigers' Omar Infante hits a two-run double against the Oakland Athletics. Photo: AP

The Detroit Tigers flirted with elimination all night but battled back to beat the Oakland Athletics 8-6 and force a deciding Game Five in their American League Division Series on Tuesday.

The victory over the visiting A’s tied the best-of-five series at 2-2 and set up a do-or-die showdown in Oakland on Thursday with the winner advancing to the AL Championship Series.

9 Oct 2013 - 10:12am

Red Sox rout Tampa Bay Rays

Stephen Drew of the Boston Red Sox hitting against the Tampa Bay Rays at Fenway Park on Friday. Photo: AFP

The Boston Red Sox batted around in two successive innings to back the superb pitching of Jon Lester in a 12-2 rout of the visiting Tampa Bay Rays in the opener of their American League Division Series on Friday.

5 Oct 2013 - 12:14pm

David Stern to visit Taiwan and China

David Stern is visiting the Philippines, Taiwan and China. Photo: AP

David Stern is soon on his way to the Philippines and Taiwan. After that, it’s off to Beijing and Shanghai.

His final months as commissioner are the NBA’s boldest yet when it comes to playing internationally, and he thinks bringing the league around the globe will remain important long after he’s left office in February.

3 Oct 2013 - 1:25pm

Red Sox rejoice over turnaround season

Second baseman Dustin Pedroia is a Red Sox lynchpin. Photo: AP

They went from 93 losses last year to 97 wins this season with a new manager and new players who helped transform a dysfunctional clubhouse with some frat-house bonding and a Boston Red Sox battle cry of “Fear the Beard.”

2 Oct 2013 - 2:07pm

Rays going to playoffs after victory over Rangers

Tampa Bay Rays' Sam Fuld (left) steals third base as Texas Rangers' Adrian Beltre dives for a wild throw by Tanner Scheppers during their tiebreaker game on Monday. Photo: AP

David Price, Evan Longoria and the Tampa Bay Rays are going to playoffs again, getting there with a victory in their final regular-season game for the second time in three years.

They needed an extra game this time.

1 Oct 2013 - 12:57pm

Indians grab wild card, Rays-Rangers face a duel

Jason Kipnis and Nick Swisher of the Cleveland Indians celebrate the 5-1 win against the Minnesota Twins. Photo: AFP

The Cleveland Indians claimed an American League wild card berth, while the Tampa Bay Rays and Texas Rangers extended the season for one more game by finishing in a tie for the league’s second wild card spot.

1 Oct 2013 - 1:42am

Tampa Bay Rays reach 90 regular season wins for fourth year

Manager Joe Maddon praises Tampa Bay Rays players for achieving 90 regular-season wins for the fourth year in a row. Photo: AP

The Tampa Bay Rays have achieved a milestone this year, even before reaching the playoffs.

For the first time in team history, Tampa Bay reached 90 regular-season wins for the fourth year in a row.

27 Sep 2013 - 1:05pm

Giants’ offence still cold in 2-1 loss to Dodgers

Los Angeles Dodgers' Carl Crawford (right) steals second base next to San Francisco Giants shortstop Ehire Adrianza during the first inning of a baseball game in San Francisco on Tuesday. Photo: AP

Giants manager Bruce Bochy described his team’s offence as being “cold right now”.

He might have been talking about the entire season for the defending World Series champs.

San Francisco struggled at the plate for the fifth straight game Tuesday night, a problem that has plagued Bochy’s ballclub all year.

25 Sep 2013 - 3:38pm

Miami Marlins lose 100th game in season

Justin Ruggiano of the Miami Marlins. The Phillies defeated the Marlins 2-1 to give Miami 100 losses for the season. Photo: AFP

Mike Redmond remembers how difficult it was to lose 100 games in a season, and how enjoyable it was to go from baseball’s laughing stock to its champion.

He’s hoping the Miami Marlins can one day follow that path.

25 Sep 2013 - 11:59am