Daily 5 -- Do closers belong in the H.O.F.?

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Daily 5 -- Do closers belong in the H.O.F.?

Have you caught your breath after the "Moneyball" premiere in Oakland on Monday night? Good. We now return to real baseball, with our daily dose of MLB-related questions that give you an opportunity to weigh in on the most significant on-the-field issues of the day. Be sure to leave your thoughts in the comments section below, or your genius goes wasted.

1) Mariano Rivera is the new all-time saves leader. First-ballot Hall of Famer?In a word, YES. The closer role has changed over the years, and that's why the Cooperstown question exists, but this man is by far the best of his generation at his position. Ergo, he's in.

2) If we're allowing closers into the Hall, shouldn't we drop the aversion to designated hitters?Again, YES. It's a position; it's right there in the AL box score: "DH." You can't deny that. Nor can whatever your thoughts are on the position prevent the best at it to be recognized in the game's history.3) How many years, and how much money, would represent your ceiling for bringing back Carlos Beltran to the Giants?It's almost certainly going to take three years, so lock that in. But at what cost? Any more than 15 million per year seems a reach for a 34-year-old.4) Is A's catcher Kurt Suzuki having a down year, or is this who he really is?Remember, his rep when he came to the bigs was as a defensive whiz whose offensive upside was minimal. He changed that by swinging a hot bat the first couple years, but now it looks like the label was dead-on.5) Is the notion of power on the corners out-dated?There was a time when the conventional wisdom said your first and third basemen, and your left and right fielders, needed to bring the bang. That was before shortstop and catcher became "offensive" positions.Don't forget to leave your thoughts, folks. Let us know how you'd handle today's Daily 5. Reader with the best answers gets a month's supply of Dutch Crunch sandwich rolls.

Punches thrown, epic brawl ensues after Strickland hits Harper with pitch

Punches thrown, epic brawl ensues after Strickland hits Harper with pitch

SAN FRANCISCO — Pitchers never forget, and Bryce Harper didn’t either. Three years after Harper took Strickland deep in the NLDS and the two exchanged words, Strickland drilled Harper, setting off a wild, legitimate fight on the mound. 

Harper charged Strickland and tried to throw his helmet before the two started throwing haymakers. A wild brawl ensued, and Strickland had to be dragged off the field by three teammates. Both players were ejected. 

Harper came up with two outs and the Giants trailing by a pair in the eighth. The first pitch was a 98 mph heat-seaker right at Harper’s hip. Harper pointed his bat at Strickland and then tossed it down. Strickland dropped his glove and then Harper threw his helmet, which ended up going toward second base. Each player got at least one good shot in before they were swallowed up by a dogpile. 

Jeff Samardzija — coming from the bench — collided with Michael Morse, who was coming from first. Both appeared to be fine.

Harper and Strickland first crossed paths in the 2014 NLDS, when Harper homered off Strickland in Game 1 and then hit a 97 mph fastball into McCovey Cove to tie Game 4. He watched it fly and the two stared at each other as Harper rounded second. When he reached the dugout, he turned back toward the field and screamed at Strickland.