Disgraced drugs cheat Alex Rodriguez was greeted with a mixture of cheers and boos as he hit a single in his first exhibition game at-bat since returning from a performance-enhancing scandal. The New York Yankees slugger hit a two-strike single to left field Wednesday in a spring training plate appearance. He also walked and hit into an inning-ending play in the Yankees’ 3-1 loss to the Philadelphia Phillies. “I am just feeling really good that I get to play the game I love,” said the 39-year-old Rodriguez.

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Post info: By JeterFanatic on March 5th, 2015
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Alex Johnson, who played 13 years in the majors and won the AL batting title with the then-California Angels in 1970, has died. Alex Johnson Jr. said Wednesday that his father died Saturday of complications from prostate cancer. The elder Johnson played for eight teams in a career that began in 1964 with Philadelphia, batting .288 with 78 homers and 525 RBIs. The left fielder was an All-Star for the Angels in 1970, and his final season was in 1976 with his hometown Detroit Tigers.

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Post info: By JeterFanatic on March 4th, 2015
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With large, glowing red numbers, the timer on the center-field wall at Goodyear Ballpark ticked down Tuesday, counting off seconds and ushering in change. Major League Baseball introduced its new pace of play initiatives during five exhibition games in Arizona and Florida. ”I’ve never worked a game in the history of baseball that has a countdown clock,” said umpire Dan Iassogna, who kept an eye on second base as the Pittsburgh Pirates and Toronto Blue Jays played in Dunedin, Florida. New York Yankees leadoff hitter Jacoby Ellsbury took the first pitch of the game – and this spring, in fact – from Philadelphia’s David Buchanan and immediately stepped outside the white-chalked line, maintaining his routine.

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Post info: By JeterFanatic on March 4th, 2015
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Actual baseball is back, with major-league teams playing against major-league teams. Tuesday was the first day of games in the Cactus and Grapefruit leagues, and while the outcomes ultimately mean very little, it’s still nice to see the homers and great defensive plays again. So come with us, fair reader, as we show you the five plays you need to see from the first day of spring training games. 1. YOENIS CESPEDES GOES GRAND SALAMI New Detroit Tigers outfielder Yoenis Cespedes showed that swing that’s won the last two Home Run Derbys, connecting for a grand slam in the Tigers’ 15-2 win over the Orioles. Ubaldo Jimenez was in midseason form, allowing six runs in 1.1 innings. 2. KANG SHOWS OFF HIS POWER Jung-ho Kang signed with the Pittsburgh Pirates in January , coming over from Korea, where he was the MVP last season hitting 40 homers. There was debate about whether that power would translate to MLB. In his first game, at least, the answer was yes. Check out his opposite-field homer as the Pirates beat the Toronto Blue Jays 8-7 . Note the leg kick. 3. RUSSELL MARTIN SHOWS OFF HIS DEFENSE Russell Martin delivered the first “must-see” defensive play of the young baseball season in the Blue Jays’ loss to the Tigers. Watch him track down this bouncer and make an off-balance throw for the out at first. Nice first impression , Russell. 4. AARON JUDGE’S THREE-RUN HOMER GIVES THE YANKEES A TIE Well, it’s not quite a walk-off homer, but Aaron Judge’s three-run, ninth inning homer made sure the New York Yankees didn’t lose. He tied their game against Philadelphia Phillies 5-5 with a two-out homer in the ninth. And since this is spring, the game just ended in a tie. It was a game-not-losing homer. (Can that be a thing?) Judge, by the way, is the No. 1 Yankees prospect, per Baseball Prospectus . 5. DESTIN HOOD CRASHES INTO THE WALL, MAKES THE CATCH Destin Hood, who the Cleveland Indians signed to a minor-league contract, made a nice first impression with this great catch in an otherwise forgettable 10-0 loss to the Cincinnati Reds. More MLB coverage from Yahoo Sports: – - – - – - – Mike Oz is the editor of Big League Stew on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at mikeozstew@yahoo.com or follow him on Twitter! Follow @MikeOz

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Post info: By JeterFanatic on March 3rd, 2015
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What to watch for today at spring training:

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Post info: By JeterFanatic on March 3rd, 2015
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The Yankees’ hopes ride on Tanaka, who opted against Tommy John surgery last season but remains optimistic about this year.

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Post info: By JeterFanatic on March 2nd, 2015
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What to watch for today at spring training:

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Post info: By JeterFanatic on March 2nd, 2015
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Phillies starter Paul Clemens pitched two perfect innings, but Philadelphia lost to the University of Tampa 6-2 Sunday in the first spring training game for a major league team this year. Russ Canzler, Aaron Altherr and Tommy Joseph strung together three straight one-out hits to put the Phillies ahead 2-0 in the second inning. After that, Philadelphia hitters did little against the No. 1-ranked team in NCAA Division II. The Phillies are projected to have a tough time all season long. ”It kind of shows where we’re at as far as seeing players and workouts and seeing the work that needs to be done,” said Philadelphia manager Ryne Sandberg, kept the majority of his big league starters out of action.

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Post info: By JeterFanatic on March 1st, 2015
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TAMPA, Fla. (AP) — CC Sabathia threw 41 pitches during his third bullpen session at spring training.

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Post info: By JeterFanatic on March 1st, 2015
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Alex Rodriguez might be in the New York Yankees’ lineup for Tuesday’s spring training opener against the Philadelphia Phillies. Yankees manager Joe Girardi said a decision will come Monday. ”See where he’s at physically.” Rodriguez, who turns 40 in July, was suspended for the entire 2014 season because for violations of baseball’s drug agreement and labor contract. With the re-signing of Chase Headley to start at third base, Rodriguez is competing for at-bats as the designated hitter.

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Post info: By JeterFanatic on February 28th, 2015
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