Thursday evening could have been taken up by a semi-final against Germany. Instead, we can follow the two MLB games scheduled for that evening while Italy take on the impressive German team. There’s a part of me that thinks losing on penalties in the quarter-finals might be a preferable exit to getting thumped by Germany for the second consecutive major tournament, although I suspect New York Mets reliever Frank Francisco would have a word on the tip of his tongue ready to describe that attitude.
Anyway, MLB now reverts back to the normal (for the remainder of this season, at least) pattern of AL and NL play. After drawing an ‘early’ game blank on Monday and Tuesday, there are eight games to choose from on Wednesday including games between the Brewers and Reds, Blue Jays and Red Sox, and Dodgers and Giants. The Chicago White Sox should have the exciting young pitcher Chris Sale on the mound for their game against the Twins, which could also be the first ‘early’ game opportunity to watch the newly acquired Kevin Youkilis playing in a White rather than Red Sox uniform.
Citizens Bank Park and Coors Field host early games on Thursday before the working week is brought to a close with an Astros-Cubs game from Wrigley Field.
All times are in BST.
Monday 25 June
No early games
Tuesday 26 June
No early games
Wednesday 27 June
17.35. Milwaukee at Cincinnati (Greinke – Bailey)
18.05. Cleveland at NY Yankees (Jimenez – Pettitte)
18.10. Chicago White Sox at Minnesota (Sale – Blackburn) *ESPN America
18.35. Toronto at Boston (Romero – Lester)
19.10. Tampa Bay at Kansas City (Moore – Mazzaro) *MLB.com Free Game of the Day
19.20. NY Mets at Chicago Cubs (Niese – Samardzija)
20.40. Oakland at Seattle (Parker – Millwood)
20.45. LA Dodgers at San Francisco (Billingsley – Lincecum)
Thursday 28 June
18.05. Pittsburgh at Philadelphia (Burnett – Kendrick) *ESPN America
20.10. Washington at Colorado (Jackson – White)
Friday 29 June
19.20. Houston at Chicago Cubs (Happ – Maholm) *ESPN America
All of these games are available to watch live via the MLB.TV subscription at MLB.com. The early games being shown on ESPN America are highlighted above, while the full ESPN/ESPN America schedule can be found on their website. There is no Thursday evening game on BBC 5 Live Sports Extra this week. The complete schedule for this week’s MLB games can be found on MLB.com.