This is WEEKEND EDITION from NPR News. I'm Rachel Martin. And it is time to talk sports.
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MARTIN: The baseball playoffs are only a couple days away. NPR's Mike Pesca is taking a look at the teams that made it. He has drawn some conclusions I understand connect to the global economy. Hey, Mike.
MIKE PESCA, BYLINE: Hello. How are you? Yes, this is true.
The incoming president of the International Cycling Union, Brian Cookson (right), shakes hands earlier this month with Pat McQuaid, the incumbent he defeated.
Credit Fabrice Coffrini / AFP/Getty Images
The International Cycling Union (UCI) has chosen a new leader. Britain's Brian Cookson beat incumbent Pat McQuaid in a contentious vote held in Italy Friday. Cookson, who led British Cycling to new heights, says he will focus on improving cycling's reputation, tarnished by years of doping scandals.
SIMON: Just a day left to the end of regular baseball season. The Cardinals clinched a playoff spot last night. Of course they were playing the Cubs. But those rampaging Cleveland Indians won their eighth game in a row to move a game closer to a wildcard spot. They're knotted up with the Tampa Bay Rays, trying to keep the Texas Rangers in the rearview mirror.
New York Yankees relief pitcher Mariano Rivera tips his cap in the ninth inning of his final appearance in a baseball game at Yankee Stadium, against the Tampa Bay Rays on Thursday.
Credit Kathy Willens / ap
The announcers kept quiet, so we won't say much either.
There's video here of what it was like Thursday night at Yankee Stadium when pitcher Mariano Rivera, considered by most experts to be the greatest "closer" in Major League Baseball history, threw his final pitch before heading off into retirement. He shed several tears, as you'll see.
And staying with baseball, let's meet a man who was once closer than anyone to victory and defeat in the same game. It's 1992, the last time the Pittsburgh Pirates were in the post season. They are one out away from the World Series. Atlanta is batting. And this happened.
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SKIP CARAY: Swung, line drive left field. One run is in. Here comes Bream. Here's the throw to the plate. He is - safe! Braves win! Braves win! Braves win! Braves win!
It's not just sports teams that win championships. It's also their fans - whole cities of people who endure long seasons, hanging on every pitch, every touchdown, every basket, sharing in both the elation of victory and also the pain of defeat. Major League Baseball's best teams are getting ready for the playoffs next week and so are their faithful. And over the next few minutes we want to feel what it's like to be on the cusp of either a championship - or disaster.
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This is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News. I'm Robert Siegel. Bud Selig, the commissioner of Major League Baseball, formally announced his intention today to step down from that position at the end of next season. Under Selig's leadership, baseball has experienced both expansion and upheaval. NPR's Mike Pesca joins us to discuss the tenure of the man who took over as the league's acting commissioner in 1992, Mike.