Vin Scully found it “embarrassing” to have his name “tossed into a negotiation”

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Yesterday I wrote a quick screed — the best kind, really — against Major League Baseball using Vin Scully for its P.R. push against some cable companies who are in negotiations with the Dodgers over broadcast rights. I thought it was manipulative and low and I speculated about whether Scully appreciated it all that much.

Bill Shaikin of the Los Angeles Times spoke to Scully after that and got his comments. You will not be surprised to hear that he did not rip anyone. It’d be somewhat jarring and maybe halfway to amazing if Scully ever ripped anyone, but if a good old redass rant was not in his toolbox by age 88 it wasn’t ever gonna be there.

He did feel awkward about it all, however. Scully referred to it as having his name “tossed into a negotiation” and Shaikin characterized Scully as “not being comfortable” with that. Scully said “it’s really kind of embarrassing for me,” though he also said that if it worked to get fans see more games he’d be happy. So it’s not like he’s against the idea of a p.r. campaign to resolve the carriage dispute, he’s just self-conscious about being attached to it.

Fair enough. Scully survived the McCourt years and Bowie Kuhn and all kinds of other dumb baseball people doing misguided things. Not getting his blood pressure up over it all is probably one of the reasons he’s still doing his job and doing it well.

Blue Jays clinch playoff berth with Orioles’ loss to Red Sox

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TORONTO — The Blue Jays clinched a postseason berth Thursday without taking the field.

Toronto was assured of an AL wild card berth when the Boston Red Sox beat the Baltimore Orioles 5-3.

If Toronto holds its current position as the first of the AL’s three wild cards, the Blue Jays would open a best-of-three wild-card series at Rogers Centre next week.

“These guys are excited to be in this position,” Blue Jays manager John Schneider said after Wednesday’s 8-3 loss to the New York Yankees. “You’ve got three really good pitchers lined up against a good Boston team, playing at home. So I think it’s more excitement more than it’s nerves or anything. I think the guys are going to come out and be ready to roll on Friday night.”

Toronto became the fourth AL team to clinch a playoff berth, joining division champions Houston, the Yankees and Cleveland. The Astros and Yankees have first-round byes.

The Blue Jays last went to the playoffs in 2020, when they were knocked out with two straight losses to Tampa Bay.

Eight of the 12 berths in the expanded postseason have been clinched: The Los Angeles Dodgers and St. Louis earned division titles, and Atlanta and the New York Mets are assured no worse the wild cards while still competing to win the NL East. The Dodgers have a first-round bye.