Central Notes: Indians, Reds, Cards, Cubs, Bucs, Tigers

Baseball's general managers are expected to address the topic of home plate collisions at their meetings in November, Buster Olney of ESPN reports, and some sources believe a rule change could come quickly. "At this point, I don't know who would argue to keep it, or what their argument would be," a team official speaking with Olney said. Team sources said they expect baseball to adopt a rule that would guarantee the baserunner an avenue to the plate, but disallow him from targeting the catcher — the same regulation that's in place at all levels of the game below the majors. Here's the latest from the AL and NL central divisions as Detroit and Boston battle for the AL pennant:

  • Paul Hoynes of The Plain Dealer ran through queries from Indians fans in a new column, ruling out Bartolo Colon as an option for the Tribe's rotation.
  • Longtime Reds writer Hal McCoy, who continues to keep a blog for the Dayton Daily News, examined where things went wrong between the Reds and Brandon Phillips. The team is reportedly shopping the second baseman, and the Braves may be interested.
  • Tyler Kepner of The New York Times attempted to pin down the reasons behind the Cardinals' sustained run of success, noting the front office's knack for player development.
  • Rick Renteria has become "the clear-cut favorite" among candidates for the Cubs' manager job, Bob Nightengale of USA Today tweets, reporting that support for the Padres bench coach is "staggering."
  • Travis Sawchik of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review assessed the Pirates' chances of carrying their 2013 success into next season. While the club's young core and farm system are reasons for optimism, several of 2013's key contributors may be lost to free agency in the coming years, and the team could be hampered by its middling revenue streams, Sawchik writes.
  • Tigers GM Dave Dombrowski may look to inject some speed into his club's lineup this offseason, Drew Sharp of the Detroit Free Press reports. 

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