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Diamond dust on Bobby V, the playoffs and Vizquel

Be sure to catch my thoughts on the new playoff system in Friday's editions. While I'm working on that story, here's a few things running through my mind.

---The Boston Globe has trotted out its list of potential replacements for Bobby Valentine. Blue Jays manager John Farrell is, of course, at the top of the list. And so is Jays first base coach and Buffalo Baseball Hall of Famer Torey Lovullo, whom I talked to on that topic for last week's Inside Baseball column.

---Dan Shaugnessy in today's Globe on Valentine's finale last night in the Bronx: "This must be what it felt like when Richard Nixon was walking around a near-empty White House, holding a tumbler of scotch and talking to the portraits of former presidents that line the hallways of the residence on 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue. 

"Bobby Valentine’s final hours as Red Sox manager Wednesday were a little sad. His Boston bowsers rolled over one last time in the Bronx, finishing the season with another pathetic loss (14-2) against the American League East champions. Bobby’s dogs dropped their final eight games, 12 of their last 13, and went 7-22 since Sept. 1."

---I'm trying to figure out what the Orioles are doing starting lefty Joe Saunders in Friday's wild-card game at Texas. He's 0-6 with a 9.36 ERA in his career at Rangers Ballpark. Can you say short leash? The Rangers, meanwhile, are going with Yu Darvish.

---Bad news for the 98-win Nationals: The team with the best record in the regular season has won the World Series just three times since 1990 (The Yankees in 1998 and 2009 and the Red Sox in 2007). 

---I picked the Tigers and Giants to make the World Series in our season preview section in March. I've been thinking for weeks it will be the Reds and the Rangers. What to do, what to do, what to do ...

---Did you catch the way the Blue Jays gave Omar Vizquel a sendoff Wednesday night in the final game of his career? Awesome stuff. Watch the highlights below.

---Mike Harrington
Twitter: @BNHarrington

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About Inside Pitch

Mike Harrington

Mike Harrington

Mike Harrington, a Canisius College graduate who began his career as a News reporter in 1987, has covered the Buffalo Bisons since 1992 and Major League Baseball since 1995. A member of the Baseball Writers' Association of America, Harrington has reported on more than 30 MLB postseason series — including every game of the World Series in this century — and all three of the Bisons' championship runs in their modern era. He is a connoisseur of the famous Stadium Mustard at Cleveland's Progressive Field.

@BNHarrington |

Amy Moritz

Amy Moritz

Amy Moritz, a native of Lockport, has covered the Bisons for The Buffalo News since 2002. She has a bachelor’s degree in journalism/mass communication from St. Bonaventure University and a master’s degree in humanities from the University at Buffalo. An endurance athlete, she has completed several triathlons, half marathons and marathons.

@amymoritz |