Cubs not expected to deal Carlos Pena to Yankees

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Cubs first baseman Carlos Pena was claimed off waivers by the Yankees on Wednesday afternoon.

The Cubs are well out of contention for a playoff spot and would do well to dump some cash. And the Yankees could use an upgrade at designated hitter, where Jorge Posada and Co. have been far too inconsistent. But it doesn’t sound like Pena will be making his way to New York this month.

Carrie Muskat of MLB.com wrote earlier today that the 33-year-old slugger is “not going anywhere” and ESPN.com’s Buster Olney tweeted moments ago that the Cubs and Yanks have “had no contact” yet concerning the waiver claim.

Pena will become a free agent this winter and could probably net the Cubs a lower-tier prospect from the Yankees’ farm system, but the Chicago front office made no effort to shop him at last month’s non-waiver deadline and apparently haven’t found new motivation here in late August.

Phil Rogers of the Chicago Tribune thinks he knows the Cubs’ primary reason for standing pat: half of the one-year, $10 million free agent contract that Pena signed last winter was deferred to 2012.

And why does that matter? Well … uhh … we don’t have a damn clue.

Watch: Brian McCann’s incredible tag nails Greg Bird at home plate

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Things got a little wild in the fifth inning of Game 7 of the ALCS on Saturday. With one out and runners at the corners, Astros’ right-hander Charlie Morton fired a 1-1 fastball to Todd Frazier. Frazier returned the ball to third baseman Alex Bregman, who tossed a perfect throw over to Brian McCann at the plate just as Greg Bird came charging home. McCann’s setup was flawless, nailing Bird as he slid into the plate and nullifying the Yankees’ first real attempt to get on the board.

That’s as close as the Yankees have come to scoring so far. The Astros took an early 1-0 lead with Evan Gattis‘ 405-footer off of CC Sabathia in the top of the fourth inning. Jose Altuve chimed in with an opposite-field solo shot in the fifth, while McCann followed his lead-preserving tag with an equally jaw-dropping two-out, two-RBI double. Houston currently leads 4-0 in the bottom of the fifth.