Game 1 to feature Jay-Z, Alicia Keys duet

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Catch me at the X with OG at a Yankee game
S***, I made the Yankee hat more famous than a Yankee can

– Jay-Z, “Empire State of Mind”
Alicia Keys is slated to sing the National Anthem before Game 1 of the World Series tomorrow night, but before that she’ll team with Jay-Z for an on-field, pregame rendition of “Empire State of Mind.”
Not only has Derek Jeter used the song as his walk-up music prior to postseason at-bats, Jay-Z is a native New Yorker and Yankees fan who has been spotted at various playoff games wearing ridiculous glasses and sitting next to Alex Rodriguez’s girlfriend, Kate Hudson.
“I’m honored to perform a song that celebrates the greatness of New York in one of our city’s most important landmarks, Yankee Stadium,” Jay-Z said. Game 1 of the World Series is interesting and all, but I’m mostly looking forward to Tim McCarver’s analysis of Hova’s performance.

Report: Orioles interested in Alex Cobb

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MLB Network’s Jon Morosi reports that the Orioles have interest in free agent right-hander Alex Cobb, who rejected his one-year, $17.4 million qualifying offer from the Rays earlier this week. Cobb was most recently linked to the Cubs, who reportedly reached out to his agent during the GM Meetings and garnered mutual interest from the righty, but nothing appears to be set in stone yet.

Cobb, 30, completed his sixth season with the Rays in 2017. He went 12-10 in 29 starts and turned in a respectable 3.66 ERA, 6.4 SO/9 and career-best 2.2 BB/9 in 179 1/3 innings. Despite losing a couple of weeks to turf toe, he remained healthy for most of the year and showed no signs of the elbow issues that robbed him of the majority of his 2015-2016 campaigns.

It’s still fairly early for any deals to come to fruition, but Morosi notes that the Orioles seem to be focused on bulking up their rotation during the first few months of the offseason. It’ll take more than a healthy Alex Cobb to right that ship, however: Orioles’ starters earned a collective 5.70 ERA and 5.5 fWAR in 2017, good for worst and fourth-worst marks in the league, respectively. Behind Kevin Gausman and Dylan Bundy (and perhaps Gabriel Ynoa/Miguel Castro), they still need three viable starters to compete in 2018. Whether or not they can afford to spring for a single starter with Cobb’s price tag (four years, $48 million, per MLB Trade Rumors) remains to be seen.