Oakland grabs ALDS Game 2 lead in seventh inning

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Tigers starter Doug Fister has been pretty sharp this afternoon at a chilly Comerica Park, boasting eight strikeouts through seven innings against the A’s. But leadoff walks are murder. And the one Fister just issued to Seth Smith could be a real haunter.

Smith was sacrificed over to second by George Kottaras then scored on a Cliff Pennington single.

Oakland leads Detroit 2-1 as this ALDS Game 2 moves along to the bottom of the seventh inning.

A’s starter Tommy Milone is out of the game after yielding just one run in six frames while fanning six.

Phillies owner John Middleton is in Las Vegas with Bryce Harper

Bryce Harper
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Jim Salisbury of NBC Sports Philadelphia reports that Phillies owner John Middleton flew to Las Vegas for a meeting with Bryce Harper on Friday. Per ESPN’s Jeff Passan, it’s “more of a meet-and-greet than a sign-a-deal” affair, but as the club is still at the forefront of trade rumors involving the All-Star slugger, there remains a possibility (however slight) that something could be completed in the days to come.

Even now, the Phillies aren’t alone in the race to sign Harper, but recent rumors have helped whittle down the competition from five or more teams (Phillies, Nationals, White Sox, Giants, and Padres) to three strong contenders. The Giants are said to be interested in a lucrative short-term deal with the outfielder, while the Padres remain in the conversation despite inking Manny Machado to a mammoth 10-year, $300 million contract this week. It’s not yet clear just how far either team would go to outbid Philadelphia as talks with Harper intensify.

As for the Nationals and White Sox, the former officially bowed out earlier today, and MLB Network’s Jon Heyman adds that the latter won’t make a strong play for Harper as they feel the asking price and competing offers are “getting too high” for the 26-year-old’s services. If a mystery team is still in the mix, there’s been no word on their standing with Harper in the last month or so.