MLB fires Executive Vice President Jimmie Lee Solomon

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Eric Fisher of SportsBusinessJournal reports that a longtime MLB executive has been let go:

Major League Baseball executive VP/baseball development Jimmie Lee Solomon has been fired by commissioner Bud Selig, according to industry sources, ending a 21-year association with the league.

MLB execs declined to comment, and it is not clear what precipitated the surprise move or what Selig plans to do to replace Solomon.

Fisher later tweeted that some team executives said “this was a long time coming.”

Solomon used to have the Joe Torre job: overseeing on-field issues and umpiring, but was demoted a couple of years ago to deal with the league’s development initiatives.  Now he’s out.

Solomon graduated from Harvard Law School, and after 10 years at a Washington law firm, where he made partner, he got into baseball. A couple of years he was quoted as saying he “hated every second” of his legal career.  Which is gonna make it a bit hard for him when he starts circulating resumes next week …

Red Sox beat Yankees 11-6 to clinch AL East for third consecutive season

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The Red Sox have clinched the AL East for a third consecutive season, beating the Yankees 11-6 in the Bronx on Thursday night. It’s the third consecutive season in which the Red Sox have won the division, the first time that’s ever been done in club history. In fact, the only other times the Red Sox won the division in back-to-back years were 1903-04 and 1915-16.

AL MVP candidate Mookie Betts went 4-for-5 with a two-run single in the second inning off of Masahiro Tanaka and a three-run homer in the eighth against Aroldis Chapman to put the game out of reach. Jackie Bradley and Brock Holt also hit homers. Red Sox starter Eduardo Rodriguez was on the hook for five runs in 3 2/3 innings, but three of them scored when Heath Hembree inherited a bases-loaded situation, then served up a grand slam to Giancarlo Stanton in the fourth. The rest of the bullpen combined to fire five scoreless innings. Steven Wright had three of them followed by zeroes from Ryan Brasier and Craig Kimbrel.

With the loss, the Yankees’ lead over the Athletics for the first Wild Card slot shrinks to 1.5 games. Meanwhile, the Red Sox will try to clinch home field advantage throughout the playoffs. With a 104-49 record, their closest competitor is the 95-57 Astros. With nine games remaining in the regular season for the Red Sox, they would have to lose every game remaining in the regular season and the Astros would have to win their 10 remaining games in order to fail to claim home field advantage.