The Globe’s Robert MacLeod curates the best of sports on the web Monday to Friday
Jim Leyland is one of baseball’s good guys, a veteran manager who has been there, done that, whose obvious passion for the game continues to run deep.
Leyland’s Detroit Tigers nailed down their third straight American League Central title with a slender 1-0 victory over the Minnesota Twins.
After the game, Leyland fights back tears trying to describe the moment before doing a little moonwalking in the Tiger clubhouse.
In baseball it usually comes down to the quality of the guys standing on the mound.
In Detroit’s case writes John Lowe in the Detroit Free Press, the Tigers have had the best starting rotation in the league all season, led by Max Scherzer.
The 20-game winner notched the win, but he walked a season-high six while striking out 10 and after the game described his performance as his “worst best outing.”
The Tiger’s post-season journey will also be about Detroit owner Mike Ilitch, writes Terry Foster in the Detroit News.
The A.L. wild card race got a lot less confusing with the Tampa Bay Rays 8-3 victory over New York officially eliminating the Yankees along with the Kansas City Royals.
With the Yankees now officially out, Tim Brown, writing for Yahoo.com, wonders who everybody will now root against once the playoffs get underway.
In the A.L. it is now a three-horse race for the wild card with the Rays holding a one-game advantage over the Cleveland Indians with the Texas Rangers lurking behind the Tribe by just one game.
In the National League, the St. Louis Cardinals defeated the Washington Nationals 4-1 to cut their magic number for the Central title to one game.
Both the Cincinnati Reds and the Pittsburgh Pirates lost but both teams appear destined to meet one more time in the wild card showdown to be played on Oct. 1.
It was quite the mob scene in Atlanta where the Milwaukee Braves shut down the playoff-bound Braves 4-0.
The fun started early, in the top of the first inning, after Carlos Gomez drew the ire of the Braves after admiring his home run shot.
Gomez was yammering at Atlanta players all the way around the base paths when he finally did start running and he was prevented from getting to home plate by Atlanta catcher Brian McCann, who met Gomez up the third base line.
That led to a bench-clearing melee by both sides.
Rolston not fazed by brawl fine
Buffalo coach Ron Rolston is taking the fine he drew from the National Hockey League (believed to be $10,000) for his perceived role in the brawl with the Toronto Maple Leafs in stride writes Mike Harington of The Buffalo News .
“It’s part of what they do,” said Rolston, referring to the league disciplinarians.
Rolston denied he sent hulking forward John Scott out onto the ice to combat Leaf sniper Phil Kessel, that Scott was playing well and had taken a regular shift the entire game.
Kessel was handed a three-game preseason suspension for slashing at Scott, who doesn’t appear to be overly perturbed by that transgression.
Cracked Sabre winger Steve Ott: "I'm sure he’s [Kessel] pretty excited to be missing the rest of the preseason, let's be honest here."
Freeman wants out of Tampa
Veteran Tampa Bay quarterback John Freeman, upset at losing his starting job with the 0-3 Buccaneers to rookie Mike Glennon, is asking for a trade writes Ross Jones on FoxSports.com
Freeman doesn’t come cheap as he is slated to earn over $8-million this season but Oakland Raiders and the Minnesota Vikings could be possible destinations.