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Whispers around the majors

Tigers have been losing, and winning, the close ones.

July 26, 2009|Phil Rogers

It's hard to lose 2-1 four times in a stretch of five games, but Detroit did that, losing two apiece to the Yankees and Mariners. However, the Tigers then turned around and took three straight from the White Sox, the last two by 4-3 scores. . . . The Red Sox have stopped scoring runs, making it more likely that GM Theo Epstein will pull off a major deal this week. He has continued to make overtures to San Diego GM Kevin Towers about Adrian Gonzalez, but he's not going anywhere. . . . The Cardinals paid heavily for Matt Holliday, who can be a free agent at the end of the season. Third baseman Brett Wallace has a plus bat but could face a position change. He was cheered loudly by fans at Busch Stadium during the Futures Game on July 12, but Tony La Russa helped convince GM John Mozeliak that the future starts now. . . . You don't hear Mariano Rivera complain about the hitter-friendly nature of the new Yankee Stadium. He's converted his last 40 saves at home, dating to August 2007. . . . Don't be surprised if the Twins trade for a shortstop, possibly Oakland's Orlando Cabrera, who's become hot property after a slow start. Cabrera was batting .229 on June 16 but has raised his average to .274. The Pirates' Freddy Sanchez is also on Minnesota's radar. . . . The Twins' Kevin Slowey faces off-season surgery for a bone chip in his right wrist but hopes to take his turn in August and September. . . . Felix Hernandez (23 years 105 days) became the youngest to get his 50th win since Bret Saberhagen with the 1987 Royals. No one's ever done it quicker than Bob Feller, who had 50 before he turned 21. . . . Credit Ivan Rodriguez if the Astros become long-term contenders. He helped turn around moribund teams in Texas, Florida and Detroit, and may be doing it again. One AL manager once said his arm and catching skills were worth one run a game, and he's still the best thing that can happen to a pitching staff. . . . Prince Fielder is on his way to becoming the first Brewer to walk 100 times in a season. . . . Jon Garland, who called out his Arizona teammates last week, will almost certainly be traded. He has made five straight quality starts, lowering his ERA to 4.41. . . . Marlins owner Jeffrey Loria is looking for some modern touches in his new stadium, due to open in 2012. The team estimates the retractable roof will be closed 60 times a year.

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progers@tribune.com

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