Los Angeles Times - - Inside Baseball - progers@tribune.com

Bud Selig says he would never ap­prove a sys­tem for the play­offs (like ex­panded use of re­play) that he wouldn’t use in the reg­u­lar sea­son … The Rays hold a tiebreaker edge over the Yan­kees, which means they’ll go into the play­offs as the East champs if the teams wind up tied. Even fac­tor­ing in Cliff Lee, those teams would much rather host Texas in the first round than go to Min­nesota … Ubaldo

Jimenez ran out of gas, which seems to have put Colorado down for the count. Is his 4.29 ERA in the sec­ond half re­lated to throw­ing 120-plus pitches five times be­fore the break? … Nick

Markakis re­mains one of the best hit­ters no one notices. He en­tered the week­end with 43 dou­bles, mak­ing him only the third player in his­tory to have four con­sec­u­tive sea­sons of at least 43 dou­bles. The other two were Joe Med­wick and Tris Speaker … Forty-year-old Craig Coun­sell wants to play again next sea­son. He’d be a good ad­di­tion for the Cubs, play­ing along­side young in­field­ers Star­lin Cas­tro, Blake De­Witt and pos­si­bly Dar­win Bar­ney … The Astros are giv­ing se­ri­ous con­sid­er­a­tion to mov­ing Car­los

Lee to first base to open up an out­field spot for Brian Bo­gu­se­vic, who was drafted as a pitcher. Lee at first could mean the much-trav­eled Brett Wal­lace (hit­ting .208 in 46 games) is on the move again … The Di­a­mond­backs made a great hire in land­ing Kevin Tow­ers to re­place Josh Byrnes. He says his first pri­or­ity is build­ing a strong bullpen, and he’s al­ready made it known that he’ll deal some of his strike­out-prone hit­ters ( Mark Reynolds, Adam

LaRoche, Chris Young and

Kelly John­son) for arms, say­ing that he likes “con­tact hit­ters.’’ Tow­ers isn’t ex­pected to keep Kirk Gib­son, but Gib­son has a lot of sup­port within the or­ga­ni­za­tion, so don’t rule it out … Two po­ten­tial matches for Tow­ers — the Mariners, who are ex­pected to shop closer David Aardsma, and the Ath­let­ics, who like Seat­tle are al­most de­void of run pro­duc­ers … One rea­son the Mariners would swap Aardsma is that they be­lieve they have a fu­ture closer in prospect Dan

Cortes, whom the White Sox traded to the Kansas City Roy­als for Mike MacDou­gal in 2006, his sec­ond pro sea­son. Cortes re­port­edly was throw­ing 102 mph at times af­ter be­ing moved into the bullpen in triple A …

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