Game Three of the World Series to start before 7PM EDT

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For the first time in over 20 years, a World Series game is going to start before 7pm Eastern time.  It will be Game Three which, thanks to the good people at Chevrolet who kicked in some extra advertising scratch, will start at 6:57 p.m.

Game Three is scheduled for October 30th, and that’s a Saturday, so it won’t help you get to bed at a decent hour on a work/school night.  It will, however, provide you with a great excuse to not get up from the couch between the end of the afternoon college football games and the World Series. Usually that window is when my wife demands that I do things around the house like, I dunno, acknowledge the existence of the kids. Now I don’t have to.

One more good thing about it: since the NL will be the home team this year, Game Three will be played in an AL park. That means that the possibility of crazy late afternoon shadows in San Francisco — should the Giants make it that far — won’t be a problem. The farthest west the game could possibly be played is Texas, and 5:57 Central time should put it safely past the shadowlands.

One thing to watch, though: the ratings for the first hour.  I’m willing to bet that they’re a notch lower than the first hour of the other games this year. Which will just go to show that, though we all moan and complain about wanting playoff games to start earlier, more of us watch them in prime time than we would before prime time.

Yankees GM Brian Cashman not considering demoting struggling Greg Bird

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Yankees first baseman Greg Bird gave his team tons of confidence to hand him the everyday job at first base to start the 2017 regular season, batting .451/.556/1.098 with eight home runs in 51 spring at-bats. But he’s followed that up by hitting .107/.254/.214 through the first month of the regular season.

GM Brian Cashman doesn’t have any intent to demote Bird back to Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre, MLB.com’s Bryan Hoch reports. Cashman said, “It’s not even an option for me in my mind right now, at all.”

Bird didn’t start Sunday’s game against the Orioles, a 7-4 loss in 11 innings. Lefty Wade Miley started for the Orioles, prompting manager Joe Girardi to put Chris Carter into the lineup at first base. If Bird isn’t able to figure things out, Carter might have an increased role on the team.

Chris Archer threw behind Jose Bautista

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Rays starter Chris Archer threw his first pitch to Blue Jays outfielder Jose Bautista behind the slugger’s back with one out in the first inning of Sunday afternoon’s game in Toronto. Bautista and Archer then had a staredown. Home plate umpire Jim Wolf issued warnings to both teams. Bautista ultimately flied out to right field and he appeared to have a quick word with Archer on his way back to the dugout.

Archer could have been exacting revenge — euphemistically known as “protecting his teammate” — because Jays reliever Joe Biagini hit Rays outfielder Steven Souza in the seventh inning of Saturday’s game. Souza was forced to leave the game and underwent an X-ray, which came back negative. He was held out of Sunday’s lineup. Biagini’s pitch did not appear to be intentional.

The Jays won Sunday’s contest 3-1 with no further incident. The two clubs meet again in Tampa for a three-game series starting on May 5, so we’ll see if Sunday was the last of the bad blood between them.