Stan Musial, baseball legend passes away at 92 UPDATED Legendary Orioles manager Earl Weaver passes away at 82

One of the all-time greats is gone. R.I.P.

Stan Musial, one of baseball’s greatest hitters and a Hall of Famer with the St. Louis Cardinals for more than two decades, died Saturday. He was 92.

Stan the Man won seven National League batting titles, was a three-time MVP and helped the Cardinals capture three World Series championships in the 1940s.

The Cardinals announced Musial’s death in a news release. They said he died Saturday evening at his home in Ladue surrounded by family. The team said Musial’s son-in-law, Dave Edmonds, informed the club of Musial’s death.

Musial was so revered in St. Louis, two statues of him stand outside Busch Stadium. He spent his entire 22-year career with the Cardinals and made the All-Star team 24 times — baseball held two All-Star games each summer for a few seasons.

A pitcher in the low minors until he injured his arm, Musial turned to playing the outfield and first base. It was a stroke of luck for him, as he went on to hit .331 with 475 home runs before retiring in 1963.

Widely considered the greatest Cardinals player ever, the outfielder and first baseman was the first person in team history to have his number retired. Ol’ 6 probably was the most popular, too, especially after Albert Pujols skipped town.

UPDATE! Earl Weaver also is gone this day

A hot-tempered bantam who screamed curses at umpires and sometimes at his own players, Earl Weaver made the Baltimore Orioles into a baseball powerhouse during his 17 years as manager.

He was infamous for his explosive diatribes, which got him thrown out of almost 100 games, and for nervously smoking cigarettes throughout games, but no one could deny that the “Earl of Baltimore” was one of the greatest managers in baseball history.

Orioles officials announced that Mr. Weaver died Friday while on a team-sponsored Caribbean cruise with many of his former players. He was 82. A report on theMLB.com Web site attributed his death to an apparent heart attack.

Known as the “little genius,” Mr. Weaver had an inventive baseball mind and used every imprecation in his colorful vocabulary to inspire his players. Once, when one of his pitchers was struggling on the mound, an exasperated Mr. Weaver implored, “If you know how to cheat, start now.”

He was a crafty strategist who preached a simple formula for baseball success — good pitching, solid defense and three-run homers.

Your MLB Playoffs update!

Cards rip Nats 8-0 take 2-1 lead

Set aside the high-pressure task of postseason pitching that Chris Carpenter routinely masters for the St. Louis Cardinals and think about this:

Even the take-it-for-granted act of breathing feels odd on occasion now that he’s missing a rib and two neck muscles.

Taking the mound for only the fourth time in 2012 after complicated surgery to cure numbness on his right side, the 37-year-old Carpenter spoiled the return of postseason baseball to Washington by throwing scoreless ball into the sixth inning, and the defending champion Cardinals beat the Nationals 8-0 Wednesday to take a 2-1 lead in their NL division series.

Giants whip Reds 8-3, even NLDS at two games a piece

Angel Pagan connects on the second pitch of the game. A Giants team that finished last in homers goes on to hit three. Tim Lincecum pitches like a two-time Cy Young winner — this time, out of the bullpen.

So many unusual things moved San Francisco to the verge of an unprecedented comeback.

Pagan hit the first leadoff homer in Giants postseason history, and Gregor Blanco andPablo Sandoval connected later for an 8-3 victory over the Cincinnati Reds on Wednesday that evened their NL Division Series at 2-2.

No team has recovered from a 2-0 deficit in a best-of-five series by winning three on the road, according to STATS LLC. This one can do it with a victory on Thursday at Great American Ball Park

Yankees rally to edge Orioles in 12

The highest-paid player in baseball could only sit and watch when Raul Ibanezpinch hit for him and tied the game with a bottom-of-the-ninth home run.

Alex Rodriguez had another good view from the dugout three innings later when Ibanez homered to win it.

Saved by manager Joe Girardi’s gutsy move — and Ibanez’s big swings — the New York Yankees rallied for a stunning 3-2 win in the 12th over the Baltimore Orioles on Wednesday night for a 2-1 lead in their best-of-five AL division series.

A’s nip Tigers 4-3 even ALDS at 2-2

Seth Smith hit a game-tying two-run double off Detroit closer Jose Valverde in the ninth inning and Coco Crisp capped Oakland’s most dramatic comeback yet with an RBI single as the Athletics staved off elimination for a second straight night with a 4-3 victory over the Detroit Tigers in Game 4 of the AL division series Wednesday.

The A’s rode 14 walkoff wins in the regular season to an improbable AL West title. Those paled in comparison to No. 15, which set up a win-or-go-home Game 5 against Justin Verlander and the Tigers.

Wow, this sets up another quadruple-header tomorrow

 

Cards bash Nats 12-4, even series

 

Beatdown!

Never count out the St. Louis Cardinals in October — especially after they lose a series opener.

Carlos Beltran hit the last two of the Cardinals’ four homers and St. Louis chased an ineffective Jordan Zimmermann early in a 12-4 rout of the Washington Nationals on Monday that tied their NL division series at one game apiece

“We know this offense has the potential to do this,” Cardinals rookie manager Mike Matheny said. “It was nice to see this, and hopefully it becomes contagious and the guys just keep going.”

Allen Craig and Daniel Descalso also went deep to help the defending World Series champions build a big lead that compensated for a two-inning start from an ailing Jaime Garcia. Craig hit his fifth career postseason homer and scored three times.

 

Nats edge Cards 3-2 in NLDS opener

 

Nat Fever, catch it!

Rookies in the postseason, the Washington Nationals played like poised veterans.

The Nationals escaped a bases-loaded jam in the seventh inning, pinch hitter Tyler Moore blooped a two-out, two-run single in the eighth and Washington beat the defending World Series champion St. Louis Cardinals 3-2 Sunday in an NL playoff opener.

The Nationals, who had never come close to making the playoffs since moving from Montreal for the 2005 season, overcame a wild start by 21-game winner Gio Gonzalez.

Reliever Ryan Mattheus needed just two pitches to bail out the Nationals in the seventh with St. Louis ahead 2-1. Tyler Clippard worked around an error in the eighth and Drew Storen saved it with a 1-2-3 ninth.