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Rangers’ retirement gifts for Derek Jeter: Yankees cowboy boots, signed George W. Bush photo

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Derek Jeter’s farewell tour continued Wednesday evening in Arlington, Texas …

Those are custom Yankees cowboy boots, presented by Michael Young (left) and Ivan Rodriguez (right).

And that’s a picture of Jeter and George W. Bush from the 2001 World Series, signed and presented by the former president himself at home plate on Wednesday. Those shots come courtesy of Mark Feinsand from the New York Daily News. Bush, you might remember, made a surprise visit at Game 3 of the 2001 World Series — when the Fall Classic shifted from Arizona’s Bank One Ballpark to Yankee Stadium — and was encouraged by Jeter to throw the ball from the mound instead of in front of it. Bush’s visit Wednesday at Globe Life Park was also a surprise. This clip does a good job of summing up that night in 2001 and the security presence around the Bronx for the first World Series game in New York after the September 11 attacks …

Jeter also received a $10,000 check from the Rangers for his Turn 2 Foundation, which helps at-risk youths.

Report: Astros remain in contact with the Athletics on Sonny Gray

OAKLAND, CA - AUGUST 06: Sonny Gray #54 of the Oakland Athletics pitches against the Chicago Cubs during the first inning at the Oakland Coliseum on August 6, 2016 in Oakland, California. (Photo by Jason O. Watson/Getty Images)
Jason O. Watson/Getty Images
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The Astros remain in contact with the Athletics on starting pitcher Sonny Gray, Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports reports. The Astros have added Charlie Morton this offseason, but the club has been trying to add a big-name starting pitcher to put at the top of the rotation behind Dallas Keuchel.

Gray, 27, was limited to 22 starts in the 2016 season due to a forearm issue. His stats left a lot to be desired, as he finished with a 5-11 record, a 5.69 ERA, and a 94/42 K/BB ratio over 117 innings. Considering how Gray pitched in the previous three years, he’s a good bet to bounce back.

Gray is under team control through 2019, which is a big draw for the Astros. Needless to say, the Athletics would want a haul in terms of prospects. Gray will earn $3.575 million in 2017, having avoided arbitration in his first year of eligibility.

President Obama Welcomes the Cubs to the White House

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As we noted last week, The Chicago Cubs took the unusual step of not waiting until the summer after winning the World Series to make their customary White House visit to meet the president. They did it today, seeing President Obama a few short days before he leaves office.

Despite the fact that Obama is a White Sox fan, he met the Cubs with diplomacy and grace. It’s almost as if he’s been in that business for the past eight years. In return, he was given some gifts by the Cubs: Theo Epstein presented Obama with a No. 44 Cubs jersey, a tile from the center field scoreboard at Wrigley Field, and a lifetime pass to Wrigley as well.

Obama is staying in D.C. after he leaves office this week, hanging around so his daughter can finish high school in the same place she started. Even so, he’s likely going to be back to Chicago a good bit over the rest of his life, so he’ll likely be able to put the free pass to work. Assuming it comes with, like, six companion passes for his Secret Service detail.