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Thursday’s Morning Mashup: Alex Rodriguez booed, lifted as Yankees eliminated

09.26.13 at 7:47 am ET

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NFL: 49ers at Rams, 8:25 p.m. (NFL Network)
College football: Virginia Tech at Georgia Tech, 7:30 p.m. (ESPN)
College football: Iowa State at Tulsa, 7:30 p.m. (FS1)
NHL preseason: Bruins at Jets, 7:30 p.m. (NHL Network)
NHL preseason: Rangers at Canucks, 10 p.m. (NHL Network)
WNBA playoffs: Indiana at Atlanta, 7 p.m. (ESPN2)
WNBA playoffs: Phoenix at Minnesota, 9 p.m. (ESPN2)


‘€¢ The Yankees were officially eliminated from postseason contention during Wednesday’s loss to the Rays, and Alex Rodriguez left the game at Yankee Stadium early because of continued problems with his legs.

Rodriguez, limited to designated hitter due to a strained calf and tight hamstring, was lifted for a pinch hitter in the eighth inning after going 0-for-3 and hearing boos after a fifth-inning strikeout.

“He just told me his legs weren’t great and he was going to take care of them,” Yankees manager Joe Girardi said. “I said, OK, go take care of them.”

It might have been A-Rod’s final appearance in a Yankees uniform, as he faces a 211-game ban from Major League Baseball, with an appeal hearing slated to begin Monday.

The team has decisions to make about a number of other players, including pending free agents Robinson Cano, Curtis Granderson, Hiroki Kuroda, Boone Logan, Phil Hughes and Joba Chamberlain, as well as the manager.

Said Girardi: “I’m not to the point where I’m looking ahead really beyond today. I don’t know what tomorrow holds or the next day holds. I’m not really worried about the future or next year. My focus is to do the job this year.”

‘€¢ It’s been a rough few days for the defending Super Bowl champion Ravens. Yes, they managed to win their last two games after being embarrassed in the season opener against the Broncos, but an incident on a party bus early Monday morning that included Jacoby Jones getting hit over the head with a champagne bottle swung by a stripper has left the team in damage-control mode.

Retired Ravens linebacker Ray Lewis, now an ESPN analyst, weighed in on the situation Monday night, saying the team “is missing leadership right now.” That didn’t sit well with the current players.

Responded quarterback Joe Flacco: “Ray knows better than that. Things happen. I think we’re usually a pretty good team with stuff like that. If you look around the league, there are probably a lot of leadership problems then. So, like I said, Ray knows better.”

Lewis was inducted into the Ravens Ring of Honor on Sunday, but Flacco said he’s crossed over to the other side.

“Ray is one of them [in the media] for a couple of minutes a well now,” the QB said. “It is what it is.”

Some of the team’s players said they were having fun with Lewis’ comments, but they were careful not to say anything inflammatory about their ex-teammate.

“I didn’t hear the comments, but no, it doesn’t bother me, because we all understand the leadership that we have with our team guys and our team,” offensive lineman Marshal Yanda said. “Obviously, Ray, he was a huge vocal leader and stuff like that and very enthusiastic, and we all love him and miss him. But it’s going to be a different type of leadership [now], obviously. Nobody is going to be able to just jump into Ray Lewis’ role and just try to be exactly the same. But we all have a lot of really good leaders on this team, and we’re not sweating it one bit.”

‘€¢ The Athletics want to move out of Coliseum, which has had flooding and sewage backup problems this year. Commissioner Bud Selig wants the team to move as well, but a proposed relocation to San Jose is being blocked by the neighboring Giants.

Selig didn’t hide his frustration in an interview with CBS Radio’s John Feinstein on Wednesday.

“It’s a pit,” Selig said of the park. “It reminds of old County Stadium [in Milwaukee] and Shea Stadium [in New York]. We need to deal with that. I’ve had a committee working on it for two or three years, and there’s no question we’re going to have to solve that problem.”

Added Selig: “It’s far more complex. Look, you have one team that wants to move and the other team doesn’t want them to move, and it’s a very complicated situation. Before I leave, I’m satisfied we’ll work out something.”

ON THIS DAY TRIVIA (answer below): On Sept. 26, 1973, which Red Sox speedster stole his 52nd base of the season to tie Tris Speaker‘s single-season club record?

QUOTE OF THE DAY: “When I’m hitting the ball well, it goes all over the place. He fooled me. He threw me a slow curveball and I thought he was going to speed me up. I was late on a swing before when he threw me a heater and I thought he was going to throw another one. But he threw a 64, 65 mph curveball, and it caught me a little off guard.” — Red Sox third baseman Will Middlebrooks, on his grand slam in Wednesday night’s victory over the Rockies

STAT OF THE DAY: 8 — Consecutive victories for the Oracle Team USA catamaran in capturing the America’s Cup over New Zealand, with the comeback completed Wednesday

‘NET RESULTS (mobile users, check the website to see the videos): The Braves show their displeasure with Milwaukee’s Carlos Gomez after the Brewers player homers in Wednesday night’s game and starts barking at pitcher Paul Maholm. It doesn’t end well.

Louisville-bound running back L.J. Scott of Marion Harding High School in Ohio hurdles a defender and runs through two others on his way to the end zone.

TRIVIA ANSWER: Tommy Harper, who finished with 54

SOOTHING SOUNDS: Marty Robbins, who died in 1982, was born on this day in 1925.

Read More: alex rodriguez, bud selig, Joe Flacco, Joe Girardi