Professional baseball

In this photo provided by Hall of Fame shortstop Barry Larkin, Joel Armbruster, the CEO of Phoenix Bats, displays a bat label from Larkin's Project Unity initiative in Plain City, Ohio, Tuesday, Sept. 22, 2020. Major League Baseball has endorsed players putting the label on knobs of bats during the playoff games starting Tuesday, Sept 29, 2020. (Joel Armbruster via AP)
September 29, 2020 - 3:15 am
NEW YORK (AP) — Barry Larkin is gladly giving Major League Baseball a helping hand in these playoffs. Two of them, actually. Look closely at the bats being swung and you might notice something on the knobs: a label with a graphic design of Black and white hands clasped over the words “Heal” and “...
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Cleveland Indians pitcher Shane Bieber throws against the Detroit Tigers in the first inning of a baseball game in Detroit, Thursday, Sept. 17, 2020. (AP Photo/Paul Sancya)
September 29, 2020 - 3:14 am
A look at what's happening around the majors today: MARQUEE MATCHUP Shane Bieber dominated this year for Cleveland, leading the American League in wins (8), ERA (1.63) and strikeouts (122). He didn’t allow a run in six of his 12 starts. Gerrit Cole delivered for the Yankees in his first season...
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FILE - In this Oct. 24, 1981, file photo, Los Angeles Dodgers batter Jay Johnstone hits a two-run home run in the sixth inning off New York Yankees relief pitcher Ron Davis in the World Series in Los Angeles. Johnstone, who won World Series championships as a versatile outfielder with the New York Yankees and Los Angeles Dodgers while being baseball’s merry prankster, died Saturday, Sept. 26, of complications from COVID-19 at a nursing home in Granada Hills, Calif., his daughter Mary Jayne Sarah Johnstone said Monday, Sept. 28, 2020. He was 74. He also from dementia in recent years, his daughter said. (AP Photo/File)
September 28, 2020 - 6:58 pm
LOS ANGELES (AP) — Jay Johnstone, who won World Series championships as a versatile outfielder with the New York Yankees and Los Angeles Dodgers while being baseball’s merry prankster, has died. He was 74. He died last Saturday of complications from COVID-19 and also had suffered from dementia in...
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Los Angeles Dodgers' Mookie Betts flies out to right field during the third inning of the team's baseball game against the Los Angeles Angels on Friday, Sept. 25, 2020, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)
September 28, 2020 - 6:56 pm
CHICAGO (AP) — Mookie Betts, meet Devin Williams and his devastating changeup. Aaron Judge, take a closer look at a much improved Shane Bieber. Fernando Tatis Jr., say hello to Jack Flaherty. Welcome to the first round of the 2020 playoffs, a class with an unusual amount of homework — and precious...
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New York Yankees' Gary Sanchez reacts after he struck out swinging in the fifth inning of a baseball game against the Boston Red Sox, Sunday, Sept. 20, 2020, in Boston. (AP Photo/Steven Senne)
September 28, 2020 - 6:46 pm
CLEVELAND (AP) — Slumping slugger Gary Sánchez will be benched in favor of Kyle Higashioka in the New York Yankees lineup for their wild-card opener Tuesday night. Yankees manager Aaron Boone confirmed Monday that Higashioka would catch ace Gerrit Cole to start the best-of-three series against the...
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Cleveland Indians starting pitcher Shane Bieber delivers in the first inning of a baseball game against the Chicago White Sox, Wednesday, Sept. 23, 2020, in Cleveland. (AP Photo/Tony Dejak)
September 28, 2020 - 6:14 pm
CLEVELAND (AP) — Shane Bieber's first playoff appearance for Cleveland will come against the team that personifies postseason baseball excellence. All those pinstripes. The roll call of Hall of Famers. The 27 World Series titles. The history. Here comes the New York Yankees and all their autumnal...
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Los Angeles Dodgers first baseman Enrique Hernandez, left, and right fielder Adam Kolarek celebrate their win over the Los Angeles Angels in a baseball game in Los Angeles, Sunday, Sept. 27, 2020. (AP Photo/Kyusung Gong)
September 28, 2020 - 3:53 pm
The playoffs are here, and there’s no better way to start than by throwing out the first ball Tuesday in Minnesota with the cheating Astros and their 29-31 record. It’s entirely possible, if not terribly likely, that the Astros could suddenly discover a way to start hitting the ball and make the...
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New York Yankees' DJ LeMahieu hits a two-run double during the sixth inning of a baseball game against the Miami Marlins at Yankee Stadium, Saturday, Sept. 26, 2020, in New York. (AP Photo/Corey Sipkin)
September 28, 2020 - 10:49 am
NEW YORK (AP) — DJ LeMahieu became the first player to win undisputed batting titles in both leagues and Juan Soto the youngest NL champion as Major League Baseball’s shortest regular season since 1878 ended Sunday. Home runs were down from last year’s record level in a mini-season of diminished...
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Washington Nationals' Juan Soto (22) reacts at first after his single during the second inning of a baseball game against the New York Mets, Sunday, Sept. 27, 2020, in Washington. Also seen is Nationals first base coach Bob Henley at right. The Nationals won 15-5. (AP Photo/Nick Wass)
September 28, 2020 - 3:15 am
The 2020 baseball season began with Juan Soto testing positive for COVID-19. Now, he's a 21-year-old batting champion — after beating out another player who went through his own ordeal with the coronavirus. Perhaps it was fitting. Soto finished atop the National League with a .351 average Sunday,...
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Minnesota Twins' Byron Buxton lies on the ground after being hit by a pitch from Cincinnati Reds' Lucas Sims during the eighth inning of a baseball game Friday, Sept. 25, 2020, in Minneapolis. (AP Photo/Jim Mone)
September 27, 2020 - 10:03 pm
A look at what's happening around the majors Monday: HOW DOES IT FEEL? American League playoff teams get only one day off to assess injuries and make roster decisions before the first round begins Tuesday. Minnesota has a couple of ailing hitters in third baseman Josh Donaldson (right calf) and...
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