ATLANTA -- For years TBS billed the Atlanta Braves as America's Team. No more. Now TBS wants to be America's Network.
After several years of cutting back its ties to the Braves, TBS begins a seven-year contract of national weekly telecasts with Boston's game at Toronto on Sunday. Chip Caray and Buck Martinez will be paired as announcers for the game; Caray also will work with Ron Darling during the network's 26 weeks of Sunday afternoon games.
TBS had exclusive coverage of the four division series and the NLCS last season. TBS will televise the division series and the ALCS this season.
"We want to be recognized as a national entity very quickly, and we think we can do that," Martinez said Wednesday, when he was at Turner Field to join Caray for a practice telecast.
SHORT HOPS -- Thursday night's game between Tampa Bay and Baltimore was postponed by rain. No makeup date was immediately set. ... Texas sent Nelson Cruz -- a former Modesto A's player -- to Triple-A Oklahoma after the outfielder cleared waivers. ... Detroit's Gary Sheffield tore a tendon in his left ring finger Thursday while trying unsuccessfully to stretch a single into a double in the eighth inning. ... Boston's Bartolo Colon struck out five and allowed one hit in five scoreless innings for Triple-A Pawtucket.