Link-O-Rama: White Sox release Bartolo Colon

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* Bartolo Colon has been reasonably effective when healthy enough to pitch this season, posting a 4.19 ERA in 12 starts, but has been sidelined since late July with an elbow injury and went AWOL on multiple occasions while rehabbing in the minors.
This afternoon the White Sox released the 36-year-old former Cy Young winner after signing him to a one-year, $1 million deal this offseason.
* Andre Ethier’s homer in the 13th inning last night was his sixth walk-off hit of the season. Ethier is now batting .333/.472/.649 with four homers, six doubles, 13 walks, and 17 RBIs in 72 plate appearances from the ninth inning on. Not surprisingly he trails only Albert Pujols and Prince Fielder in Win Probability Added.
* With last night’s long ball David Ortiz moved past Frank Thomas for the all-time lead in homers at designated hitter with 270. Edgar Martinez is third on the list with 243, followed by Harold Baines at 236 and Don Baylor at 216. Ortiz has just 43 homers as a non-DH, while Thomas has 252.
* After having season-ending elbow surgery last week Grady Sizemore went under the knife again this morning “to reinforce an unstable abdominal wall.”
* Kevin Youkilis’ back spasms and Victor Martinez’s undisclosed personal issue will keep them both out of the Red Sox’s lineup again tonight.

Athletics and Mariners to begin the 2019 regular season in Tokyo

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Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle reports that the Oakland A’s and the Seattle Mariners will begin the 2019 regular season in Japan, in the Tokyo Dome.

The series will mark the third time that the A’s will begin their season in Japan, first doing it in 2008 against the Red Sox and then again in 2012 against the Mariners.

This is just the latest of Major League Baseball’s moves to expand the the game internationally. In addition to those previous series in Japan, the Dodgers and Diamondbacks opened their season in Australia in 2014 and the Dodgers and Padres will play a series in Mexico City this May. There has likewise been talk of the Mets playing a series in London, though those details have not yet been worked out. Obviously the World Baseball Classic represents the league’s effort to broaden the global scope of the once national pastime.

Get ready for early morning baseball, folks.