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Mike Leake Made Quite The Leap

Tracy Ringolsby -

Mike Leake made headlines by jumping from Arizona State to Cincinnati's rotation, bypassing the minor leagues completely. Tim Conroy can relate. Just 81 days after his 18th birthday, a couple of weeks after his graduation from Gateway High in Monroeville, Pa., Conroy found himself standing on the mound at Royals Stadium, wearing an Athletics uniform, and facing the two-time defending American League West champion.

Majors | #2010#Column

Rushed Pitchers Have Little Success

Tracy Ringolsby -Premium Content

The temptation is there. Can Washington resist? The Nationals are not going to win the National League East or the wild card—sorry if that bursts anybody's bubble—whether Stephen Strasburg starts the season in the rotation or in the minor leagues. With that in mind, the Nationals had every reason to err on the side of caution.

Majors | #2010#Column

This Could Be The Year Of The Manager

Tracy Ringolsby -

t the end of last season, Braves manager Bobby Cox let it be known that he would return in 2010 for one final managerial fling. With Joe Torre, Lou Piniella and Tony La Russa in the final years of their contracts, too, it's possible that each of those veteran managers could decide to fill out their final lineup card this season.

Majors | #2010#Column

Draft Gives Teams Chance To Succeed

Tracy Ringolsby -

With the Stephen Strasburg signing by the Nationals came an outcry to revamp baseball's draft. Why? The draft does what it is supposed to do. It gives the teams that have less success on the field a chance to add the better amateur prospects each year.

Majors | #2009#Column

McDonald Comes Full Circle

Jack Etkin -

One of the most decorated prep athletes in Colorado history, Darnell McDonald was a first-round pick in 1997. He finally played his first game at Coors Field on Monday after a long, mostly minor league career, and talked to Jack Etkin about the long, strange trip back to Denver.

Majors | #2009#Column

Needed Step

Tracy Ringolsby -

For all the fanfare surrounding the Nationals agreeing to terms with righthander Stephen Strasburg, the more significant moment in the history of that franchise came three days later. That's when the term interim was removed from Mike Rizzo's title and he was officially announced as the team's general manager, and the true foundation for the future was put in place.

Majors | #2009#Column

Slowing The Spread Of The Game

John Manuel -Premium Content

While my colleague Will Lingo argues (correctly) that baseball and the Olympics were never a great fit, there are ways that baseball needs the Olympics. And the biggest reason is the bureaucracy and the money that stem from the strength of the Olympic brand name.

Majors | #2009#Column