LEADING OFF: Another day to rest as trade deadline nears

Oakland Athletics' Yonder Alonso is greeted by Ryon Healy after hitting a solo home run o a pitch from Seattle Mariners' Andrew Moore during the third inning of a baseball game, Saturday, July 8, 2017, in Seattle. (AP Photo/John Froschauer)

A look at what’s happening all around the majors Thursday:


Are the Dodgers and Astros headed for an October showdown? Can the Cubs rediscover their drought-snapping form? Will Aaron Judge pull an MVP/Rookie of the Year sweep? Time to find out … almost. First, the All-Star break gives baseball one more day to rest. MLB resumes its season Friday with a full slate of games.


A few of this week’s All-Stars are sure to come up in trade talks as the non-waiver trade deadline approaches, including Reds shortstop Zack Cozart and Athletics first baseman Yonder Alonso. Meanwhile, the Nationals are sure to target some bullpen help – maybe White Sox closer David Robertson or Padres left-hander Brad Hand? Then there’s Detroit, which may begin selling off some aging stars, including ace Justin Verlander and outfielder J.D. Martinez. White Sox left-hander Jose Quintana and A’s righty Sonny Gray could be on the move, too. The deadline to make deals without going through the waiver process is July 31 at 4 p.m. ET.


Ratings for the All-Star Game ticked up slightly in the first year after baseball nixed the rule awarding the winning league World Series home field. The AL’s 2-1, 10-inning victory at Miami on Tuesday got a 5.5 national rating, 11 share and average audience of 9.28 million on Fox. Viewership was up 7 percent from last year’s 4-2 AL win in San Diego, which received a 5.4 rating and 10 share on Fox, where its average audience was 8.71 million.