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Is Show-Me showdown a World Series preview?

The Royals and Cardinals enter their three-game intrastate rivalry series with the two best records in baseball. Will they meet again in October?

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7hJim Bowden

Bowden: The 20 players most likely to be dealt

Jim Bowden lays out the 20 players most likely to be dealt by July 31, including a trade likeliness rating, interested teams and best fit for each guy.

Has Bumgarner passed Kershaw? (2:10)

Baseball Tonight Video

Slugger to take: Harper or Stanton? (2:18)

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3hDavid Schoenfield

Baseball is dying ... again

A Wall Street Journal report shows that participation in youth baseball appears to be in heavy decline.


Web Gems: Thursday, May 21

Does Chris Carter's sliding catch top Alex Gordon's leaping grab into the stands? Vote at @BBTN, using #WebGems.

AP Photo/Beck Diefenbach
18hDavid Schoenfield

Thursday's power rankings

Madison Bumgarner shined as the San Francisco Giants beat Clayton Kershaw, while the Tampa Bay Rays took over first in the AL East.

MLB Video

Tigers walk off against Astros (1:11)

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1dDavid Schoenfield

#TBT: When Babe Ruth hit right-handed

According to nationalpastime.com, Babe Ruth decided to bat right-handed in the ninth inning on May 21, 1930 -- a game in which he hit three homers.

Flores: Loria, Samson still running Marlins' show (1:10)
1dBuster Olney

Trade market not close to materializing

Buster Olney checks in on how MLB teams view the current trade market, identifies one aspect in which the Twins have improved and more.

AP Photo/Ted S. Warren
1dBen Lindbergh

Becoming the boomstick

How Nelson Cruz beat the aging curve to become one of the best hitters in baseball.


Doug Padilla @ESPNChiSox

Mauer with the RBI double and the Twins lead 1-0, T1. Samardzija has gone to a full count vs. the first 3 Twins hitters.

Pujols homers, moves closer to Foxx

Albert Pujols hit HR No. 528 tonight, putting him only six away from tying Jimmie Foxx for 17th all-time. The Angels lead Boston 2-1 in the 4th. Follow live

J.D. Martinez with another oppo shot

The Tigers OF smashed his MLB-leading 6th opposite field home run (he has 9 total) of the season for Detroit, who has a 3-2 lead over the Astros in the 4th. Follow live

Rangers' offense explodes in 3rd

Prince Fielder's 3-run home run highlighted a 7-run, 4-hit top of the 3rd against Yankees SP Michael Pineda. Mitch Moreland also homered in the inning for Texas, which leads 7-0. Follow live

Mariners hand Felix a small cushion

Logan Morrison smoked a 2-run triple in the 4th to put Seattle up 3-1 over Toronto. This gives Felix Hernandez, who's trying to become MLB's first 7-game winner, a 2-run lead. Follow live

Young starters dueling in Pittsburgh

The Pirates' Gerrit Cole has the upperhand thus far as his team leads the Mets and rookie Noah Syndergaard 2-1 in the 3rd. Gregory Polanco and Chris Stewart drove in Pittsburgh's runs. Follow live

Harper's incredible month continues

Bryce Harper has been hotter than hot lately. Since May 6, he has 11 home runs, 11 walks and just 5 strikeouts. He is also just the 6th Nationals/Expos player to hit 11 HRs in a single month.


Ichiro moves past The Bambino

Ichiro Suzuki moved past Babe Ruth on the all-time hits list with his 2nd-inning single vs. the Orioles tonight. Suzuki's 2,874 hits put him alone in 42nd place. Next up? Mel Ott (2,876). Follow live

Harper homers again

Another game, another Bryce Harper HR. He took Sean O'Sullivan deep to left in the bottom of the 2nd for his 16th of the season, tied with Nelson Cruz for the MLB lead. It's his 11th HR since May 6. Follow live

Boston Red Sox @RedSox

Porcello works around a Matt Joyce double for a scoreless 2nd. He's got 2Ks on 20 pitches through 2. X, Nap, and Holt due for #RedSox.

Speedy Gordon gives Marlins lead

Dee Gordon singled to lead off the bottom of the 1st, and stole 2nd and 3rd against Ubaldo Jimenez. Gordon then scored on Giancarlo Stanton's single to left, putting Miami ahead of the Orioloes 1-0 early. Follow live

Encarnacion starts things with a bash

The last time Felix Hernandez faced the Blue Jays, he allowed 8 runs in 4 2/3 innings. Chalk up 1 more already in the first, as Edwin Encarnacion hit a solo HR with 2 outs. Hernandez got out of the inning shortly thereafter, but the Blue Jays lead 1-0. Follow live

Strong start for Syndergaard

Noah Syndergaard has looked good so far in his 3rd career start. The young Mets righty struck out the side in the bottom of 1st against the Pirates on 14 pitches. The Mets and Pirates are scoreless in the 2nd. Follow live

Angels at Red Sox, 7:10 p.m. ET

Garrett Richards' last outing at Fenway Park cut his season and Cy Young bid short. Fully recovered and again looking like one of the AL's best arms, Richards is pitching at Boston for the first time since tearing his left patellar tendon Aug. 20. Follow live

AP Photo/Gail Burton

Astros at Tigers, 7:08 p.m. ET

Houston leads its division this late in a season for the first time since May 22, 2004. The Astros are 3-11 at Comerica, but Houston P Collin McHugh (5-1, 4.09 ERA) is 4-0 with a 2.39 ERA in his last eight road starts. Follow live

AP Photo/Aaron Josefczyk

Phillies at Nationals, 7:05 p.m. ET

With Bryce Harper and the NL's best offense leading the charge, the Nationals look for their pitching staff to follow suit Friday night, opening a 3-game set with the Phillies. Max Scherzer gets the start for Washington. Follow live

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SportsCenter @sportscenter

Max Scherzer is worth spending for tonight against the Phillies. Here’s more of Cynthia Frelund’s daily fantasy advice.