Cincinnati Reds manager Dusty Baker reacts to his team's play against the St. Louis Cardinals during the first inning of play in National League Major League Baseball game at Great American Ball Park in Cincinnati

The Dusty Baker anecdote you could have gone your whole life without hearing


FOX’s Jon Paul Morosi passes along an anecdote about Dusty Baker’s final dark days as the Cubs’ manager that, I am quite certain, is unique in the history of Major League Baseball:

“At the very end, somebody took a dump right where I stood in the dugout every day,” Baker said Monday morning. “That was the low point. The grounds crew guy cleaned it up. He said, ‘Oh, I think it’s dog crap.’ I said, ‘No it ain’t. That’s human crap.’”

Dusty doesn’t know who did it. I find it hard to believe that a fan is gonna schlep a bag of crap to the ballpark.  And even if the plan was, um, put together in a bathroom in Wrigley Field, there would be too many other fans who would see the drop.  No: this was an inside job. A player or a coach did it in the wee small hours of the morning before Duty Baker made his way to the dugout.

But who did it?  Looking at the roster of the 2006 Cubs suggests all manner of suspects. Michael Barrett wasn’t well-liked on that team.  Todd Walker had his share of attitude issues during his career. Greg Maddux has a history of scatalogical pranksterism.  Really, it could have been anyone!  Well, maybe not Neifi Perez. That dude practically owed his career to Baker. He’d probably take a bullet for the guy.

The real question is whether anyone saved the evidence.  Because while it’s likely not possible now, I’m sure someday technology will help us make a positive ID.


ALDS, Game 1: Rangers vs. Blue Jays lineups

Toronto Blue Jays' starting pitcher David Price works against the Baltimore Orioles during first inning of a baseball game in Toronto, Saturday, Sept. 5, 2015. (Darren Calabrese/The Canadian Press via AP) MANDATORY CREDIT

Here are the Rangers and Blue Jays lineups for Game 1 of the ALDS in Toronto:

CF Delino DeShields
RF Shin-Soo Choo
3B Adrian Beltre
DH Prince Fielder
1B Mike Napoli
LF Josh Hamilton
SS Elvis Andrus
2B Rougned Odor
C Robinson Chirinos

SP Yovani Gallardo

With left-hander David Price on the mound for Toronto the Rangers are going with Mike Napoli at first base over Mitch Moreland. Beyond that it’s a pretty standard lineup for Texas, or at least standard for what manager Jeff Banister used down the stretch once Josh Hamilton was healthy enough to play left field.

LF Ben Revere
3B Josh Donaldson
RF Jose Bautista
DH Edwin Encarnacion
SS Troy Tulowitzki
1B Justin Smoak
C Russell Martin
2B Ryan Goins
CF Kevin Pillar

SP David Price

After returning from the disabled list for the final weekend of the regular season Troy Tulowitzki is in the lineup and batting fifth. That allows Ryan Goins to play second base in place of the injured Devon Travis. Justin Smoak gets the nod over Chris Colabello at first base against a right-hander.

Astros leave Chad Qualls off playoff roster, add Preston Tucker

Chad Qualls Getty
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Houston made one unexpected change to the roster for the ALDS, leaving off veteran reliever Chad Qualls.

Qualls warmed up but never appeared in the Wild Card game win over the Yankees and during the regular season the 36-year-old right-hander logged 49 innings with a 4.38 ERA and 46/9 K/BB ratio. Qualls was on the Astros’ last playoff team in 2005.

Utility man Jonathan Villar has been bumped off the roster in favor of outfielder Preston Tucker, as the Astros opted for a good left-handed bat off the bench versus the Royals rather than Villar’s speed.