NEW YORK — An emotional Tuesday may have brought the end to an era for the New York Mets. But the Mets know there’s no better way to pay tribute to Sandy Alderson than by proving Wednesday night that Tuesday night’s win was no fluke.
The Mets will look to earn a series victory Wednesday night [url=http://www.officialhockeyjetsshop.com/authentic-adidas-josh-morrissey-jersey]Josh Morrissey Jersey[/url] , when they host the Pittsburgh Pirates in the rubber match of a three-game set at Citi Field.
Zack Wheeler (2-6, 4.85 ERA) is scheduled to take the mound for New York against Pittsburgh’s Ivan Nova (4-5, 3.98 ERA) in a battle of right-handers.
The Mets concluded a whirlwind day by edging the Pirates 4-3 in 10 innings. Wilmer Flores, who had a two-run single in the first inning, delivered his third walk-off hit of the season and the ninth walk-off hit of his career when his single down the third-base line scored Michael Conforto from first base with one out.
The Mets (32-45) snapped a seven-game losing streak hours after learning Alderson, who has been the team’s general manager since October 2010, would be taking an indefinite leave of absence to battle a recurrence of cancer. He was originally diagnosed in 2015 and underwent treatment following that season.
Three of Alderson’s assistants — John Ricco, J.P. Ricciardi and Omar Minaya — will share the general manager’s role while Alderson is out.
Alderson said during a pregame press conference that the cancer returned in April. He informed players of his diagnosis during a pregame meeting that left many players in tears but also may have crystallized their focus.
“We have a job to do and lately we haven’t been doing it up to our potential,” Conforto said. “So we really wanted to focus in and just make sure that we bounce back today, of all days, and play a little bit better. I think we showed a little fight there. We battled back and scratched together enough runs to win a ballgame tonight. So hopefully that gets us on the right path.”
The Pirates (37-42) were hoping a wire-to-wire 6-4 victory in Monday’s opener would get them back on the right track, but Tuesday’s loss was the sixth in the last seven games.
On Wednesday, the Pirates will be seeking only their second series win in their last 13 series dating back to May 17, a span in which they are 12-25.
“I think I shared with our club — I don’t believe I’ve ever been through a rough patch of 34 games since I’ve been in the major leagues as a player, coach or manager,” said Pirates manager Clint Hurdle, who reached the bigs as a player in 1977. “And I’ve had enough. There’s a point in time you stop talking about being a good team, now you go play like a good team. Because your record’s telling you you’re not a good team.”
Wheeler will be looking to earn his first win in almost two months. He took the loss Friday after allowing four runs over seven innings as the Mets fell to the Los Angeles Dodgers 5-2. Wheeler is 0-5 with a 5.13 ERA in 10 starts since his most recent victory April 29.
Nova didn’t factor into the decision Friday, when he allowed three hits over eight scoreless innings in the Pirates’ 2-1, 13-inning loss to the Arizona Diamondbacks. It was the second time this season Nova has tossed eight scoreless innings. He also didn’t earn a decision in Pittsburgh’s 1-0 win over the Detroit Tigers on April 26.
Wheeler didn’t factor into the decision in his lone previous start against the Pirates on May 27, 2017, when he gave up three runs over six innings as the Mets fell 5-4 in 10 innings.
Nova is 1-0 with a 2.82 ERA in four career appearances (three starts) against the Mets.
Jed Lowrie and Khris Davis gave the Athletics an opportunity for another come-from-behind win. Stephen Piscotty completed the job.
Piscotty belted a go-ahead, two-run homer in the 11th inning as Oakland rallied for a 6-3 victory over the Cleveland Indians on Saturday afternoon.
It was the Athletics’ 22nd comeback win of the season, six of them occurring in extra innings. The Indians carried a 3-0 lead into the eighth before reliever Neil Ramirez gave up back-to-back home runs to Lowrie — a two-run blast — and Davis to tie it.
”You can’t sleep on our offense because we can vaporize the lead really quick,” Piscotty said. ”We know that and that’s why we keep grinding and keep playing.”
Matt Chapman, who had a career-high four hits and stole his first base in the majors, scored later in the frame on Jonathan Lucroy’s grounder to make a winner out of A’s closer Blake Treinen (5-1).
Nine of Oakland’s last 19 victories have occurred via runs in the eighth inning or later, including its last two. The A’s scored twice in the eighth Wednesday to beat San Diego 4-2.
”Just knowing that we’re not out of the game, no matter how late it is [url=http://www.officialhockeyjetsshop.com/authentic-adidas-kyle-connor-jersey]Kyle Connor Jersey[/url] , definitely builds confidence,” said Davis, who has a team-high 21 homers. ”We’ll just keep learning from them and hold onto the momentum.”
Cleveland had its home winning streak snapped at eight and fell to 1-6 in extra-inning contests. Josh Tomlin (0-5), the Indians’ sixth pitcher, allowed all three runs after entering to start the 11th.
Right-hander Corey Kluber tossed seven shutout innings, but was denied in his bid to become the first Indians pitcher with 13 wins before the All-Star break since Hall of Famer Gaylord Perry had 15 in 1974.
The two-time AL Cy Young winner allowed only one runner to reach third base, scattering five hits and striking out three before exiting after 102 pitches. Kluber is 7-1 with a 1.43 ERA at Progressive Field this season.
”Even though we didn’t beat him, to get a win with a guy like Kluber on the mound to start, that might be worth two for us,” Lowrie said. ”It never seems like we’re out of a game.”
Oakland righty Edwin Jackson went 5 2/3 innings in his third big league start of the year, allowing single runs in the first, second and sixth. Ryan Buchter, Lou Trevino and Treinen combined to blank Cleveland the rest of the way.
Ramirez hadn’t allowed a run in his previous 17 appearances, but manager Terry Francona didn’t second-guess his decision to pull his ace.
”Corey is such a good pitcher and he’s smart, and he gave us seven really good innings,” Francona said. ”We lean on him so hard, I thought we’d go to Neil. And it didn’t work. Neil has been good, but today, not so much.”
Indians shortstop Francisco Lindor scored his major league-leading 79th run and had an RBI, while Greg Allen doubled home Yan Gomes. Lindor committed the error that scored Chapman with the game’s final run.
The Indians played the final three innings without a designated hitter after Francona made a flurry of strategic moves that forced RHP Zach McAllister into the batting order. The former Phillies skipper also pulled off a rare AL double-switch in the 11th to avoid having Tomlin bat.
”We didn’t want to play a National League game for obvious reasons,” Francona said. ”I didn’t want to do it, but I thought that was our best way to win.”
Athletics: OF Matt Joyce (lumbar strain) was placed on the 10-day disabled list. He missed 15 games in June with the same ailment. OF Nick Martini was recalled from Triple-A Nashville, where he has a 65-game on-base streak.
Indians: OF Lonnie Chisenhall (left calf strain), who was hurt Monday in Kansas City, will travel to Washington for a second opinion on his oft-injured lower legs. This marks his third DL stint with calf problems in a calendar year.
Athletics LHP Brett Anderson (0-2, 7.63 ERA) will be activated to face Indians RHP Shane Bieber (4-0, 2.97 ERA) in the three-game series finale. Anderson has not pitched for Oakland since May 18 because of a strained right shoulder.
Jacksonville Jaguars linebacker Telvin Smith is pleading for leniency after being fined $10 [url=http://www.redskinsfootballauthentics.com]Washington Redskins Jerseys Womens[/url] ,000 for taunting Pittsburgh Steelers running back Le’Veon Bell during his fumble return for a touchdown last week.
Smith pointed at Bell near the goal line and drew a 15-yard penalty. He says he will appeal the fine.
The team’s leading tackler issued a public apology to the NFL on Thursday, saying, ”I wish I had not pointed. Give me a camera to talk to the league, too. NFL, please listen. I’m sorry. I got the fine today. I apologize. I take the point back, the taunting. I’m a great player.”
A second-team All-Pro selection, Smith had 102 tackles during the regular season and has 27 in two postseason games, including 16 against the Steelers.
He adds: ”Y’all make sure y’all put that video up about the fine. Trying to get that appealed.”
Regardless of sport, fantasy players become giddy dreamers when it comes to discussing the potential of rookies.
The expectations are rarely realistic. It’s more fun to imagine Giants running back Saquon Barkley piling up 1,850 yards from scrimmage and 15 touchdowns, or Suns center Deandre Ayton averaging 19 points, 12 rebounds and two blocks than to consider the practical implications of adjusting from dominating in college sports to the pro game.
Several rookies have already had strong fantasy showings this summer in baseball, including Nationals outfielder Juan Soto, Braves outfielder Ronald Acuna Jr. and Dodgers pitcher Walker Buehler (although Acuna and Buehler are currently on the disabled list). Pirates outfielder Austin Meadows and Braves pitcher Mike Soroka have flashed the potential to emerge as productive stalwarts for years to come.
With most teams using July to either press forward or chart a new course, the next batch of coming attractions will have fantasy baseballers waiting to either luck out on their waiver wire order or go all-in with their remaining FAAB bucks:
Vladimir Guerrero, Jr., 3B [url=http://www.cardinalscheapstore.com]Youth Arizona Cardinals Jerseys[/url] , Blue Jays: Couldn’t have a list without him, right? He’ll return to action in mid-July after a strained patellar tendon put him on the shelf, but there’s no question he’ll arrive in Toronto at some point. At 19, his bat can still be a difference maker.
Eloy Jimenez, OF, White Sox: Currently in Triple-A, Jimenez has the upside to become a .320 hitter with 40-home run power. The only question is when, not if, he’s called up between now and the end of the season.
Kyle Tucker, OF, Astros: A legit five-tool talent, Tucker has mauled Triple-A pitching over the past two weeks and only needs an opening to appear in the crowded Houston outfield.
Francisco Mejia, C/OF, Indians: Had a brief appearance in the bigs earlier this season and while Yan Gomes has a grip on catching duties in Cleveland, the Indians will find a way to get Mejia’s bat into the lineup once he’s recalled.
Justus Sheffield, P, Yankees: He’ll be up [url=http://www.ravenscheapstores.com]Youth Baltimore Ravens Jerseys[/url] , even if not with New York, who could use Sheffield as trade bait to add a veteran arm to the rotation before the July 31 non-waiver trade deadline.
Cowboys rookie receiver Michael Gallup is a strong deep sleeper candidate who has a great chance to become a Week 1 starter. Allen Hurns has never been a featured wideout, Terrance Williams has a broken foot and Cole Beasley was a major disappointment last season, making it likely that Gallup, a third-round pick, could seize a prominent role.
Gallup’s value will only rise as more fantasy leagues begin. He’s got late-stage value right now, but if he thrives during the preseason he will be a solid WR3/flex with strong WR2 upside.
A DENVER NUGGET?
Concerns about his back led to Michael Porter, Jr., falling to 14th in last week’s NBA draft, where he was selected by the Nuggets. Whether he can contribute this season remains a question, but if Porter is healthy, fantasy players could see why he’s drawn comparisons to Kevin Durant.
No one in last week’s draft has as much upside as the 6-foot-10 Porter, who could pair with top 10 fantasy talent Nikola Jokic and give the Nuggets another big man who can fill up the stat sheet on a nightly basis.
This column was provided to The Associated Press by the Fantasy Sports Network,
Indians pitcher Carlos Carrasco has been removed from their game against Minnesota after he was struck on the right arm by a line drive in the second inning.
Carrasco hopped off the mound and went down to his knees on the infield grass after he was hit by Joe Mauer’s leadoff liner. Manager Terry Francona and a team trainer visited Carrasco [url=http://www.thebengalsfootballauthentic.com/malik-jefferson-jersey-authentic]Youth Malik Jefferson Jersey[/url] , who remained on his knees for several moments.
Carrasco then walked to the dugout with the trainer and was replaced by Oliver Perez. Minnesota scored four runs in the first off Carrasco, who entered Saturday’s game with an 8-4 record.
It looked as if Carrasco was struck on the elbow, but the team announced he was taken to a hospital for examination of a forearm contusion.
Carrasco was hit in the face by a line drive in 2015, but made his next turn in the rotation. The right-hander broke his right hand after being hit by a line drive late in the 2016 season and missed the playoffs.
Dallas Keuchel had a different catcher before throwing his first pitch for the Houston Astros on Tuesday night.
Everything worked out just fine with Tim Federowicz behind the plate with the former AL Cy Young Award winner throwing some of his best breaking pitches all season.
Keuchel struck out seven and allowed only two runs over seven scoreless innings, winning for only the second time in his last nine starts, as the Astros beat the Texas Rangers 5-3.
”Some of the shape it was taking early was really good. (Shin-Soo) Choo leading off the game, anytime you get him to swing and miss at a breaking pitch, it’s acting pretty good, and then (Nomar) Mazara struck out looking with a slider away,” Keuchel said. ”Both of those balls had good action and I knew from the then on if I could establish the fastball in to the lefties [url=http://www.thebengalsfootballauthentic.com/mark-walton-jersey-authentic]Youth Mark Walton Jersey[/url] , it would be a good day.”
Josh Reddick and Tony Kemp homered for the Astros, who are 11-4 this season against their instate division rival, with seven consecutive road wins in the series. Houston is a majors-best 31-14 on the road this season.
Keuchel (5-8) struck out the first four batters he faced, and six of the first seven.
After catcher Brian McCann went on the disabled list and had arthroscopic surgery on his right knee earlier Tuesday, manager A.J. Hinch said Max Stassi would do the bulk of the catching. But Stassi got hit by a pitch batting in the first, and left the game with a bruised right (throwing) wrist before even taking the field on defense.
”I think we avoided a fracture, very good for us,” manager A.J. Hinch said. ”Got him pretty good in the wrist. Got a welt there, couldn’t flex his hand, hand so mobility.”
X-rays were negative and Stassi is considered day to day.
Keuchel had only thrown a few bullpens with Federowicz in spring training [url=http://www.authenticssanfrancisco49ers.com/cheap-cassius-marsh-jersey]Cassius Marsh Color Rush Jersey[/url] , and a live BP session, before the catcher was called back from Triple-A Fresno earlier Tuesday.
”The way he handled the game not expecting to play, that was really impressive,” Keuchel said.
Choo later walked twice and had two singles to extend his career-best on-base streak to 43 games, the longest in the majors since Atlanta’s Freddie Freeman’s 46-gamer two years ago. Choo is three games shy of Julio Franco’s team record of 46 in a row set 25 years ago.
The Astros used three relievers to get through the eighth. Texas already had a run in before Hector Rondon took over against pinch-hitter Joey Gallo, who worked a 12-pitch at-bat into a two-out walk to load the bases before Robinson Chirinos struck out. Rondon then worked the ninth for his sixth save in eight chances.
Houston went ahead to stay in the first when Yuli Gurriel and Reddick had RBI doubles off Austin Bibens-Dirkx (1-2), who still managed to get through six innings. He struck out four, walked two and hit two batters.
”To get through six in that situation was huge for us,” manager Jeff Banister said. ”Early on it didn’t look that it was going to be the case, a situation where really didn’t have a whole lot of sink on the fastball. … For us to still have an opportunity there through those innings [url=http://www.packersauthorizedshops.com/authentic-josh-jackson-jersey]http://www.packersauthorizedshops.com/authentic-josh-jackson-jersey[/url] , it was big-time by him.”
Astros: SS Carlos Correa, out since June 26 with lower back soreness, has been working out daily in Houston. Hinch said it was uncertain if Correa will be ready to play Friday when eligible to come off the DL. He hadn’t gone through any baseball activities yet.
Rangers: RHP Tony Barnette left the game after a 2-1 pitch to Marwin Gonzalez in the eighth. The Rangers said he had a right shoulder strain and would be evaluated further Wednesday. … 1B Ronald Guzman had two hits and scored twice after being activated from the seven-day concussion DL.
The Astros have homered in 23 consecutive road games, a club record and four from matching the MLB record set by Oakland earlier this season. … Before Bibens-Dirkx plunked Stassi in the first inning, Rangers pitchers had gone 22 games without hitting a batter – the longest span for the team since 1998.
DOUBLE DOUBLED UP
Astros leadoff hitter George Springer was in a 3-for-46 slide before a single in the sixth. But he was also doubled off twice on hard lineouts.
Gerrit Cole (9-2) will pitch on regular rest for the Astros after they made a slight tweak in their rotation. Lance McCullers Jr., who was scheduled to start, was instead pushed back to Friday. Rangers lefty Mike Minor (6-4) took a perfect game into the seventh inning of his last start, a win last Wednesday over the San Diego Padres.
Bradley Chubb would normally be content relying on game tapes to make his case to scouts.
There [url=http://www.billsfootballauthentics.com/trent-murphy-jersey-authentic]Youth Trent Murphy Jersey[/url] , he insists, they will find a big man with edge-rushing skills and enough power to stuff the run. Watch enough of footage and it just might convince those NFL executives that Chubb is the best defensive player in this year’s NFL draft.
But this is no typical week for North Carolina State’s star defensive end. He’s participating in the NFL’s annual scouting combine in Indianapolis, answering questions and dropping names.
”I try to take Khalil Mack and Von Miller and put them into one person,” Chubb said Saturday. ”I’m a high-motor, high-energy guy.”
If team executives concur, his name could be one of the first three called in April.
Naturally, Chubb describes himself as the best player in Indy this weekend and who’s going to argue with a 6-foot-4, 269-pound man.
Not the deep, diverse quarterback group, which did its on-the-field workouts Saturday and will likely spend the next few years trying to escape Chubb’s grasp.
Not the highly touted running back class, which includes Saquon Barkley and Chubb’s own cousin, Nick, who will be running away from a lineman who posted 25 sacks and 54 tackles for loss over the past three seasons.
Sure, there are questions.
Is he big enough to hold up against the NFL’s massive tackles, does he have enough moves to make an immediate impact, can he make a smooth transition to the more physical pro game?
He might also be asked to explain why he spat upon the Florida State logo following North Carolina State’s upset win or why he decided to skip the Wolfpack’s bowl game.
Those who know Chubb best have no doubt he will succeed.
”He’s so happy, always smiling,” said offensive tackle Will Richardson, a college teammate who routinely squared off with Chubb in practice.
”He’s a goofball. We used to get grapes after a game and he would come over and knock them out of your hands and someone would be like `Why did you do that?’ But he always had a few extra grapes in his other hand to give to you. He’s definitely a goofball, a goofball in a good way.”
Many believe there’s nothing goofy about him being possibly the best pass-rusher in a draft heavy on interior linemen – and thin at one of the NFL’s most coveted positions.
Those challenging Chubb’s title include Marcus Davenport of UTSA, Sam Hubbard of Ohio State, Arden Key of LSU and Harold Landry of Boston College.
Each had college careers that ranged from solid to spectacular, and each knows they must answer questions about size, injuries or the competition level they’ve faced.
”Nobody in this draft class has a first step like mine,” Landry said. ”My mindset and my approach to the game, I’m a guy that’s going to do whatever it takes to be the best at my position.”
But those who played alongside Chubb understand his impact cannot be measured in stats alone.
”We got to win more games,” college teammate and combine invitee Justin Jones said. ”Having a guy like Bradley Chubb on the edge, it turns a lot of plays back to us and the rest of the team. They want to take Bradley out of the game, and we have other (defensive) linemen that can make plays.”
Chubb appears to have the size to play right away, room to grow and even bloodlines working in his favor.
His father, Aaron [url=http://www.the49ersfootballauthentic.com/kentavius-street-jersey-authentic]Youth Kentavius Street Jersey[/url] , played at Georgia. His older brother, Brandon, starred at Wake Forest before being signed by the Los Angeles Rams as an undrafted free agent in 2016 and spending most of that season on the Detroit Lions‘ practice squad.
So if things fall the right way, Bradley Chubb could become the highest-drafted descendant of the family that established ”Chubbtown” – a rural area in northwestern Georgia, three miles from the Alabama border- in the mid-1800s.
And that’s an honor Chubb would treasure.
”When you’re there, you feel it,” he said. ”My last name is Chubb, and I wear it with pride.”
The Chicago White Sox snapped an eight-game losing streak with a victory Friday night over the Oakland Athletics.
Now, the White Sox will try to start building momentum in a positive direction.
Chicago (25-50) will go for back-to-back wins when it hosts Oakland (39-37) on Saturday afternoon at Guaranteed Rate Field. The White Sox and A’s are coming off a doubleheader split and have two games left in the four-game series on Chicago’s South Side.
The matchup will represent a personal milestone for White Sox right-hander Dylan Covey (3-2, 2.90 ERA), who will face the A’s for the first time in his career. The A’s drafted him in 2013 in the fourth round, but Chicago selected him in the Rule 5 draft before the start of last season.
Covey endured a turbulent 2017 campaign but has performed much better this time around. The 26-year-old went five straight starts without a defeat before falling short in his most recent outing Monday against the Cleveland Indians. He gave up four earned runs on six hits over six innings in that 6-2 defeat.
This will be Covey’s 20th start in the big leagues. He is 3-9 with a 5.95 ERA in his career.
“On the outside looking in, I would say he’s on a path that leads us to believe he’s turning a corner and getting to where you feel comfortable with all of his approaches, when he’s attacking hitters, and that’s going to be able to have this become a sustainable activity for him,” Chicago manager Rick Renteria said to the Chicago Sun-Times. “The stuff is good. It’s always going to be, for all pitchers, trusting the stuff and commanding strikes.”
For Oakland, right-hander Daniel Mengden (6-6, 4.06 ERA) is set to make his 16th start of the season. The Houston Astros drafted Mengden in the fourth round in 2014, and he was traded to Oakland the next season as part of a package for veteran left-hander Scott Kazmir.
Kazmir has not pitched in the big leagues since 2016, but Mengden appears to have a bright future at age 25. He has struggled recently, however, allowing 16 earned runs in his past 14 1/3 innings for a 10.05 ERA during that span. He has given up eight home runs in that time.
In his only career appearance against the White Sox earlier this season, Mengden allowed only one run and six hits in eight innings. He walked one and struck out six while picking up the win in Oakland’s 8-1 victory.
A’s outfielder Matt Joyce could remain in the lineup one day after he was activated from the 10-day disabled list with a lumbar strain. He hit .196 with seven home runs and 13 RBIs before the injury, and he went 0-for-2 in his return Friday night.
“Obviously, he’s been a big part of our lineup,” A’s manager Bob Melvin said to mlb.com. “Maybe not the year he envisioned up to this point, but we feel like he’s swung the bat a lot better than his numbers would suggest. He had a couple of hits the last couple of games, and he’s healthy again.”
The White Sox are 13-25 at home. The A’s are 19-17 on the road.
That is the question for the Seattle Mariners and those in attendance Thursday night at Safeco Field for the opener of a four-game series with the Boston Red Sox.
Will they get to see the Felix Hernandez who went a season-high eight innings in his last home start against Tampa Bay [url=http://www.billsauthorizedshops.com/authentic-jeremy-kerley-jersey]http://www.billsauthorizedshops.com/authentic-jeremy-kerley-jersey[/url] , giving up just one run on five hits with one walk and seven strikeouts?
Or will it be the King Felix who lasted just three innings on the road Saturday against those same Rays, getting tagged for six runs (five earned) on seven hits to a team that had lost eight straight games?
“He threw the ball very well and got very good results the last time out (at home),” Mariners manager Scott Servais said after Saturday’s 7-3 loss. “But the key in this league is being consistent and going out there every start and giving your team a chance to win. And we were behind the eight ball after the third inning. I just want to see consistency and giving us a chance to win. And he does, too.
“Felix’s stuff wasn’t as good (Sunday). It was evident right from the get-go. The life on the fastball really wasn’t there. It’s not all about velocity. It’s about locating it. And that wasn’t really on either.”
Hardly a ringing endorsement for a six-time All-Star and the American League’s 2010 Cy Young Award winner.
King Felix is 6-5 this season with a career-worst 5.70 ERA. He has given up four or more runs in five of his past seven starts.
“I was making some good pitches and they had some hits that found some holes and there’s nothing I could do about that,” Hernandez said in his own defense Saturday. “I think I had pretty good stuff, they just put a lot of balls in play, just a little bit of tough luck. I was a little bit up, but I think I was making good pitches.”
Maybe catcher Mike Zunino put it best, telling The Seattle Times: “There’s been games where his velocity may not have been that high, but if he locates he can get away with stuff.”
Opposing pitchers haven’t gotten away with much against the Red Sox, who lead the American League East.
Outfielder Mookie Betts, who returned Monday from a stint on the 10-day disabled list with a left abdominal strain, leads the league with a .352 batting average and an on-base plus slugging percentage of 1.171. Teammate J.D. Martinez is second to the Los Angeles Angels‘ Mike Trout with 22 homers and is third in the league, behind Betts and Trout, with a 1.033 OPS.
Betts hit his first home run since coming off the disabled list Wednesday in a 5-1 victory that gave the Red Sox a sweep of Baltimore.
“I’ve done everything that I pretty much do, and I passed the test,” said Betts, who didn’t have the benefit of a minor league rehabilitation assignment. “Just trying to ride this wave.”
Hernandez is 8-4 with a 4.01 ERA in 19 career starts against Boston.
The Red Sox will counter with left-hander David Price (7-4, 4.00 ERA), who is 5-0 in his past six starts overall.
Price is 3-1 with a 2.62 ERA in seven career starts against Seattle.
The Houston Astros‘ offense looks to be back on track.
After totaling 21 runs in their previous seven games, the World Series champs have scored in double-figures in each of their last two.
Yuli Gurriel and Alex Bregman each homered and Charlie Morton won his 11th as the Astros beat the Chicago White Sox 12-6 Saturday for their fifth straight win.
”I think we’re swinging the bats well and playing good baseball,” Bregman said. ”I think offensively, we have a done a good job of passing the baton to the next guy, and if we continue to do that [url=http://www.billsauthorizedshops.com/authentic-trent-murphy-jersey]http://www.billsauthorizedshops.com/authentic-trent-murphy-jersey[/url] , we will be successful.”
Morton (11-2) allowed five runs and five hits with eight strikeouts in 5 2/3 innings. The right-hander has won four of his last five starts.
”I feel bad for Charlie because he got a little nickel and dimed at the end with a few soft hits and an ill-timed walk and then a well-placed, bases-clearing double,” Houston manager AJ Hinch said. ”I thought his stuff was really good at the end. . That saying that he pitched better than the line indicates, that’s going to be the day today. Still a winning pitcher, still a guy that gave us a chance to win.”
James Shields (3-10) allowed a season high-tying eight runs on a season-high 10 hits with nine strikeouts in 5 2/3 innings for the White Sox, who have lost four straight. Shields had allowed one run over his prior two starts.
”Just wasn’t my day today,” Shields said. ”I’m just not really happy about not going deep in the game. I’m really trying to save this bullpen. These guys are taxed. I really wanted the ball and be that guy to go deeper in the game.”
Gurriel, who also had an RBI single in the eighth, hit a three-run homer to left field to increase Houston’s lead to 4-0 in the third inning.
Josh Reddick had a run-scoring fielder’s choice and Evan Gattis added an RBI single to push the Astros’ advantage to 6-1 in the fifth. However, Matt Davidson had an RBI single with the bases loaded and Omar Narvaez followed with a three-run double to pull Chicago within one in the sixth, chasing Morton.
Bregman’s two-run homer in the bottom of the inning extended Houston’s lead back to three.
”A 2-0 count, I was trying to get something over the middle of the plate,” Bregman said. ”I was fortunate enough to put a good swing on it.”
Bregman finished a triple shy of the cycle to extend his hitting streak to 12 games.
”He’s doing everything right in the batter’s box as far as seeing the ball, his selectiveness, his approach is A-plus,” Hinch said. ”Bat-to-ball has been exceptional.”
Max Stassi hit an RBI double in the second and an RBI single in the eighth for the Astros. Marwin Gonzalez added an RBI single in the seventh as every Houston starter had a hit. Houston won 11-4 Friday night.
”It’s an excellent ball club, let’s face it they’ve got guys that swing the bat up and down the lineup,” Chicago manager Rick Renteria said of the Astros. ”They’ve got an air of confidence that they play with, which comes with the things that they’ve accomplished. It’s natural.”
Avisail Garcia hit a sacrifice fly in the fourth and a solo home run on to the train tracks in left in the eighth for Chicago. Garcia has five home runs in his last six games.
The Astros promoted top prospect, outfielder Kyle Tucker from Triple-A Fresno. Tucker, who was named to the Pacific Coast League’s All Star team, was hitting .306 with 14 home runs and 66 RBIs. He went 1 for 4 with a single and run scored in the seventh and an RBI walk in the eighth to go along with three strikeouts. The Astros optioned outfielder Jake Marisnick to Fresno in a corresponding move.
White Sox: SS Tim Anderson returned to the lineup. Anderson was out Friday after being hit on the left forearm the previous day. Anderson went 0 for 4 and reached on an error in the fifth.
White Sox: RHP Lucas Giolito (5-7) will make his 18th start of the season in the series finale. Giolito is 2-3 with a 7.50 ERA in his last eight stars and gave up nine runs in two innings in his last start against the Astros on April 21.
Astros: LHP Dallas Keuchel (5-8) is looking for his third straight win. Keuchel allowed two runs over seven innings in his last start Tuesday against the Rangers.
The surging San Francisco Giants have made the NL West a little more intriguing.
Brandon Belt and Joe Panik drove in two runs each [url=http://www.authenticssanfrancisco49ers.com/cheap-fred-warner-jersey]Fred Warner Color Rush Jersey[/url] , Hunter Pence had a pinch-hit, two-run double, and the Giants completed a three-game sweep with a 9-6 victory over the division-leading Arizona Diamondbacks. It was San Francisco’s seventh win in eight games and their first sweep of the Diamondbacks since September of 2016. San Francisco moved into a second-place tie at 2 1/2 games behind Arizona for the first time since June 10.
A four-run fifth inning highlighted by Pence’s double off reliever Silvino Bracho gave the Giants an 8-3 lead. Cory Gearrin (1-1) got one out in the fourth inning to earn the win in relief of starter Derek Holland.
Afterward, manager Bruce Bochy praised the veteran Pence – who is primarily a bench player at present – for accepting his role.
”He is our spiritual leader. I know his role has changed and he has handled it so well. This is a little bit of a change for him and it is not easy,” Bochy said. ”He has a great attitude and just wants to help the club win.”
The Giants tagged starter Zack Godley (9-6) for seven runs on nine hits in four-plus innings, ending his four-game winning streak. But Holland didn’t make it out of the fourth, chased after loading the bases with an intentional walk with San Francisco leading 4-3.
The Diamondbacks couldn’t take advantage, as Belt raced well beyond the first base bag into shallow right field to throw out Christian Walker at first and end the inning.
”We feel like we are in a good rhythm,” Pence said. ”It’s part of baseball and we feel like we are working on all cylinders and that is definitely momentum.”
Holland allowed three runs on seven hits in 3 2/3 innings.
Godley’s five walks were the second most he’s issued in a start this season.
”I couldn’t locate certain pitches and they took advantage of that [url=http://www.authenticssanfrancisco49ers.com/cheap-tarvarius-moore-jersey]Tarvarius Moore Color Rush Jersey[/url] ,” Godley said. ”They’re swinging the bat really well right now, one through nine.”
Arizona rallied with two runs in the seventh on Paul Goldschmidt’s 18th home run of the season, and Jarrod Dyson became the eighth player in team history to record at least two hits, two RBIs and two stolen bases in a game.
The Diamondbacks brought the tying run to the plate in the ninth with two outs, but Will Smith struck out Jake Lamb for Smith’s second save.
”They kicked our butts. They came in here and beat us, straight up,” Lamb said.
WALKER IN LEFT
Walker, normally a first baseman, started Sunday in left field for the first time in his 44-game major league career.
To help provide coverage for the bullpen amid a long stretch without a day off [url=http://www.authenticssanfrancisco49ers.com/cheap-kentavius-street-jersey]Kentavius Street Color Rush Jersey[/url] , Arizona called up Bracho from Triple-A Reno before Sunday’s game. Pitcher Jimmy Sherfy was sent back to Reno. Bracho has been recalled five times this season.
FIRST PITCH FOR FIRST PICK
Recently drafted Phoenix Suns big man Deandre Ayton, the first overall pick in June’s NBA Draft, threw out the ceremonial first pitch before Sunday’s game.
Giants: 3B Pablo Sandoval was hit by a pitch in the right elbow in the third inning and left the game before the bottom of the inning. X-rays were negative and the injury was announced as a deep bruise, with Sandoval’s status day to day. … 3B Evan Longoria is about a week away from taking some swings as he works his way back from a broken left hand, Bochy said. … RHP Jeff Samardzija’s final rehab start for Triple- A Sacramento is set for Monday and he is expected to pitch five or six innings with around 90 pitches.
Diamondbacks: INF Ketel Marte was held out after suffering a right leg cramp in Saturday’s game. Manager Torey Lovullo said he felt the team ”dodged a bullet” as far a more serious injury.
Giants: LHP Madison Bumgarner (1-2) is set for his sixth start of the season in the series opener against the Colorado Rockies on Monday in Denver.
Diamondbacks: LHP Robbie Ray (3-0) is set to face the St. Louis Cardinals in the series opener at Chase Field on Monday.
The Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame pulled Kelly Gruber from its induction weekend festivities after the former Toronto Blue Jays third baseman made an awkward appearance during a Pitch Talks panel discussion a day earlier.
Gruber was briefly on stage at the Homestand Sports event Thursday night with host Ashley Docking and Rogers Sportsnet broadcaster Kevin Barker in Toronto. In a joint statement Friday, the Hall of Fame and Pitch Talks said the proceedings were stopped 45 minutes early due to Gruber’s ”unacceptable and inappropriate behavior.”
”Basically what happened was by the time he got on stage he appeared to be inebriated,” said Homestand Sports founder Kevin Kennedy. ”He was just acting sort of obnoxious, kind of erratic, he was confrontational with our host [url=http://www.authenticsbuffalobills.com/cheap-harrison-phillips-jersey]Harrison Phillips Color Rush Jersey[/url] , Ashley, and quite quickly I knew that this wasn’t going in the right direction.”
Gruber was one of several former Blue Jays chosen to participate in various Hall events in the lead-up to Saturday’s ceremony in Ontario, where former major league stars Pedro Martinez and Lloyd Moseby will be inducted along with baseball historian William Humber.
Gruber’s representative, Don Graham, emailed a statement from the former player to The Canadian Press on Friday evening.
”There’s two sides to every story and I would love to tell mine,” Gruber said. ”Maybe what I said was taken the wrong way. My intention for being there was to honor my teammate and buddy Lloyd, and the interview part went south for a variety of reasons which I will detail at a later date.”
The 56-year-old Gruber made his big league debut with the Blue Jays in 1984. He won a World Series with Toronto in 1992 and ended his career with the Angels the following year.
LOS ANGELES — It only took a few days away from each other for the fortunes of the Chicago Cubs and the Los Angeles Dodgers to change.
Five days after the Cubs claimed a series victory over the Dodgers in Chicago [url=http://www.eaglesauthorizedshops.com/authentic-markus-wheaton-jersey]http://www.eaglesauthorizedshops.com/authentic-markus-wheaton-jersey[/url] , the teams will get together four more times in Los Angeles starting Monday night. It is a cluster of games that has brought a playoff feel for the clubs that squared off in last fall’s National League Championship Series.
Since they last met a few days ago, the Cubs went to Cincinnati and were swept in a four-game series against the last-place Reds. The Dodgers departed Chicago for New York, where they swept the Mets in a three-game series and also welcomed staff ace Clayton Kershaw off the disabled list.
While Kershaw is scheduled to close out the series on Thursday afternoon, the Dodgers will open against the Cubs with Kenta Maeda (4-4, 3.84 ERA) on the mound.
The right-hander lasted just 3 2/3 innings against the Cubs on Tuesday, giving up three runs and five hits in the Dodgers’ only win during the three-game series. It was his first career start against the Cubs in the regular season.
The Cubs will counter with left-hander Jon Lester (9-2, 2.10), who has won five consecutive starts, beating the Dodgers on Wednesday when he gave up five hits in seven scoreless innings. Lester is 3-3 with a 3.33 ERA in eight career regular-season starts against the Dodgers.
There is no doubting Lester’s roll. He has gone six innings in seven consecutive starts and is 8-2 with a 1.67 ERA in his last 12 outings.
The bigger question surrounds what type of run support Lester will receive. The Cubs have been sporadic on offense, and even while winning two of three over the Dodgers, they scored just nine runs in the series and five total in a doubleheader split Tuesday.
How do the Cubs turn on the offense as their eight-game road trip now heads west?
“I wish I knew the answer to that,” Cubs first baseman Anthony Rizzo said, according to the Chicago Tribune. “The work is good, the preparation is good. It’s just how this game goes sometimes. Hopefully, we lock in as a unit and stay locked in for a long time.”
The Dodgers managed to score just five runs in their swing through Chicago but went to New York and dropped 21 runs on the Mets in three days.
Aside from their Wrigley Field visit, the Dodgers have been putting runs on the board with ease. They head into Monday’s series opener with 46 home runs in June, including seven on Sunday alone.
“I think that if you look back at our wins, there is a parallel with us hitting a homer and wining a baseball game,” Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said after Sunday’s game. “I just think as we are going well, we’re not trying to hit homers. I think we’re just trying to put good swings on the ball. When you do that with our guys, with the path of the bat, it’s elevated and that’s just the way our guys swing the bat. Those are good things.”
The Dodgers set a National League record Sunday for most solo home runs in a game and the seven blasts were tied for second most in a game in franchise history.
While the Cubs might be searching for offensive consistency as a whole, Albert Almora has no such concerns. He had three more hits Sunday [url=http://www.eaglesauthorizedshops.com/authentic-avonte-maddox-jersey]http://www.eaglesauthorizedshops.com/authentic-avonte-maddox-jersey[/url] , his ninth game with three or more hits, and is 14-for-40 (.350) in his last 13 games, with multiple hits in six of those.
Fresh off their first Super Bowl title, the Philadelphia Eagles arrived home to a hero’s welcome Monday afternoon, hours after overjoyed fans mobbed the streets in a sometimes unruly victory celebration nearly 60 years in the making.
Hundreds of fans greeted the team’s plane at Philadelphia International Airport, cheering wildly and singing ”Fly Eagles Fly” as Eagles owner Jeffrey Lurie emerged with the Lombardi Trophy.
After getting off the plane, Lurie, Coach Doug Pederson and stars like tight end Zach Ertz and running back LeGarrette Blount approached the chain-link fence separating the team from the fans, smiling, pumping their arms and shooting video with their phones. Fans stood on cars and news trucks to catch a glimpse.
”It’s been a long journey to redemption,” said John Hall, 49, who works at Philadelphia’s public transit agency. ”We don’t have to hear the negative anymore, that we don’t have a ring. It’s official now.”
Dan Mazzoli, 53, a disabled construction worker and die-hard fan from New Jersey, shared the moment with his 12-year-old son and 11-year-old daughter.
”We’ve been waiting for this all our lives,” he said.
Super Bowl MVP Nick Foles, the unassuming backup quarterback who took over for injured star Carson Wentz and played brilliantly throughout the playoffs, wasn’t on the team plane. Foles headed – where else? – to Disney World, riding a float at the Orlando resort and fist-bumping Mickey Mouse amid a shower of green confetti.
”It’s all right to yell,” he told the cheering crowd. ”We’re world champs! We did it! We did it!”
The underdog Eagles won their first NFL championship since 1960 on Sunday night with a surprise 41-33 victory over the New England Patriots, ending a drought that had long tormented the city’s football-crazed fans. Philly was the only team in the Northeast Corridor to have never won a Super Bowl.
The city scheduled a victory parade for Thursday along a 5-mile route that will stretch from the Eagles stadium complex to the steps of the Philadelphia art museum [url=http://www.eaglesauthorizedshops.com/authentic-josh-sweat-jersey]http://www.eaglesauthorizedshops.com/authentic-josh-sweat-jersey[/url] , whose steps Sylvester Stallone ran up during ”Rocky.” It’s a fitting ending point for a team that Stallone had cheered on throughout the playoffs.
Revelers along the parade route will be able to indulge in free Bud Light at two dozen bars, thanks to a promise the beer maker made to Eagles offensive tackle Lane Johnson before the season.
Philly had some cleaning up to do Monday after pockets of Eagles fans turned unruly overnight, with rowdies smashing department store windows, looting a gas station convenience store and toppling a number of the city’s famously greased light poles. The police commissioner said he and other officers were hit with bottles.
The vast majority of revelers celebrated peacefully, and police made only three arrests, said Ajeenah Amir, a spokeswoman for Mayor Jim Kenney.
”Tens of thousands came out and celebrated this amazing victory, and but for a handful of bad actors, the celebration was peaceful and jubilant,” Amir said. She lauded police for ”their assistance in getting the crowds dispersed and people home safely.”
Just as Foles and the Eagles clinched victory in Minneapolis, the scene more than 1,000 miles away in Philly was one of jubilation and pandemonium.
Revelers shot off fireworks, drivers beeped their horns and Philadelphians young and old descended on Broad Street, the main thoroughfare that last hosted a major championship parade in 2008 for the Phillies’ World Series win.
”The city deserved it,” said 66-year-old Lou Potel, who threw a party at his home just off Broad before joining a much bigger party outside. ”It’s a great city, and now we have a Super Bowl to go along with it.”
Fans clambered atop the awning at the swanky Ritz Carlton Hotel near City Hall, jumping off into the crowd in what one Twitter post called ”Ritz Carlton Skydiving.” The awning later collapsed with a large group of people on top of it. It wasn’t clear if anyone was injured.
Nearby, windows were smashed at a Macy’s department store and at an Old Navy clothing store.
And apparently no amount of grease in the world can keep some drunken Eagles fans from climbing poles in celebration. A few managed to shimmy up traffic lights and street sign poles.
Amir said there were reports of some injuries from falls near light poles but precise numbers weren’t available.
Vandals were seen having an apparent food fight inside a gas station’s convenience store, yelling ”Everything is free!” and overturning a car outside a hotel. After 1 a.m., the only people allowed inside the 24-hour Wawa convenience store near City Hall were police officers.
Associated Press writers Kristen De Groot in Philadelphia and Michael Rubinkam in northeastern Pennsylvania contributed to this report.
Fox Sports will broadcast the NFL draft this season [url=http://www.officialknightsproshop.com/authentic-adidas-william-karlsson-jersey]William Karlsson Jersey[/url] , along with the NFL’s usual television partners of ESPN and NFL Network.
A person familiar with the decision says Fox will show the same feed as the NFL Network. The person spoke on condition of anonymity because the league and Fox haven’t announced the decision.
ESPN will still air its own draft feed but the person said the current rights deal for the draft allowed for the inclusion of another broadcaster.
Article continues below ...
Pro Football Talk first reported the deal.
Fox won the rights to broadcast 11 Thursday night football games in a deal with the NFL last month, taking over a package that was previously shared by NBC and CBS.
Well, that didn’t last long.
The Los Angeles Rams’ first playoff appearance in 13 seasons came to a quick end Saturday night when the young, upstart team led by the NFL’s youngest coach was schooled by Matt Ryan and the Atlanta Falcons, who won the wild-card game 26-13.
It was the Rams’ first playoff game at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum since 1979 and their first in Southern California since 1986.
Only six Rams players had playoff experience, including left tackle Andrew Whitworth, who went 0-6 with the Cincinnati Bengals.
Whitworth said it was natural that players would be nervous in their first playoff appearance.
However, second-year quarterback Jared Goff downplayed the team’s lack of postseason experience.
”I think they played better than we did,” Goff said. ”Playoff inexperience, I don’t know what that means. Each game’s the same. This one has a little bit more meaning to it, of course. But we did not play well. And if we played like this two weeks ago against the same team, we would have lost as well.”
The Rams fell behind 13-0 thanks to two special teams gaffes by Pro Bowler Pharoh Cooper. Todd Gurley got going too late to help [url=http://www.officialcapitals.com/authentic-adidas-alex-ovechkin-jersey]Alex Ovechkin Jersey Kids[/url] , although he did finish with 101 yards rushing. Goff made some nice passes, but also had some misses and watched his teammates make some drops.
Cooper fumbled on a kickoff return late in the first quarter when he was hit by Damontae Kazee, with Kemal Ishmael recovering at the Rams 32.
Devonta Freeman capped the short drive with a 3-yard scoring run to give the Falcons a 13-0 lead.
Matt Bryant kicked field goals of 29 and 51 yards in the first quarter.
The Falcons, who blew a 28-3 lead in last season’s Super Bowl, had their first score set up by a special teams blunder by the Rams that allowed Atlanta to almost completely flip the field.
With the Falcons forced to punt from their 14, Cooper was indecisive and let the ball bounce at about the L.A. 40. It hit off Blake Countess’ foot during a wild scramble that ended with LaRoy Reynolds recovering at the Rams 17.
The Falcons had to settle for Bryant’s 29-yarder. He kicked a 51-yarder on Atlanta’s next possession.
Cooper took the blame for the miscues. He said he should have protected the ball better on the kickoff return. On the punt, he said he needed to take control of the situation by yelling ”Poison,” as in, get away from the ball.
”They’ve been so good for us all year,” Goff said. ”They’ve won so many games for us. You can go look throughout the whole season how many games those guys, in particular Pharoh, have contributed to and put us in good field position. The first one was a freak one and the second one I know he’d like to have back. He’s a Pro Bowl returner and has done such a good job this year. I know we wouldn’t want anyone (else) back there.”
The Rams had gone from 4-12 in 2016 [url=http://www.officialcapitals.com/authentic-adidas-andre-burakovsky-jersey]Andre Burakovsky Jersey[/url] , their first season back in Los Angeles after 22 years in St. Louis, to 11-5 and the NFC West championship under first-year coach Sean McVay.
The Rams were hosting their first playoff game in the Coliseum since Jan. 7, 1979, when they lost 28-0 to the Dallas Cowboys in the NFC championship game. It was their first playoff game in Southern California since Jan. 4, 1986, when they beat the Cowboys 20-0 at Anaheim Stadium.
McVay was born 20 days after that game.
The Rams moved to St. Louis after the 1994 season and won their only Super Bowl after the 1999 season.
They moved back to L.A. prior to the 2016 season.
”It’s hard,” Goff said. ”We didn’t want this to end at all. We’ve got such a special group of dudes in there, coaches and everybody. It’s such a special group. You don’t want it to end this early by any means. But I think we have a good, strong core group we’ve built this year.”
WASHINGTON — The Washington Nationals are approaching July 4 on the verge of becoming what nobody predicted them to be when the season started — a .500 club.
Washington fell to 42-41 Monday night with 4-3 loss to the Boston Red Sox [url=http://www.ramsfootballauthentics.com/john-kelly-jersey-authentic]Youth John Kelly Jersey[/url] , their sixth loss in seven games. Once again, they did almost enough to win, falling behind 3-0 and rallying within one before Craig Kimbrell retired Anthony Rendon with the tying run on base to end it.
Max Scherzer, who has had an impressive year at the plate as well as on the mound, ironically was done in by friend and former pitching teammate Rick Porcello, whose bases-loaded double off Scherzer in the second inning made it 3-0.
“I wish I had a lot to say about that, but I don’t really know what happened,” Porcello, who improved to 10-3, told NESN.com. “Obviously I know he’s got a big fastball and I just got lucky. He got to the top of his windup and I told myself start swinging and I hit it.”
With the loss, Washington dropped seven games behind the Atlanta Braves in the NL East.
“This is where the test is, that even when things aren’t going your way, when things are bleak, when we haven’t been playing great baseball, you have to find a way to take and find certain things you are doing well and just try to build off those,” Scherzer, winless in his last five starts, told MASN.com. “That’s just what the whole team has to do.”
The Red Sox (57-29) survived solo homers by Rendon in the fourth [url=http://www.officialkings.com/authentic-adidas-anze-kopitar-jersey]Womens Anze Kopitar Jersey[/url] , Daniel Murphy in the sixth and Bryce Harper in the eighth.
Reliever Joe Kelly surrendered the Harper homer to cut Boston’s lead to 4-3. Since the start of June, Kelly has pitched 9 1/3 innings and allowed 12 hits and nine earned runs.
“We’ll keep working with him, one thing that he needs to do better is tempo,” Red Sox manager Joey Cora said. “I think his tempo is going the other way instead of being more aggressive, and just grab the ball and throw it. So, we’ll talk to him.”
Boston left-hander Brian Johnson (1-2, 4.28) opposes right-hander Tanner Roark (3-9, 4.10) on Tuesday night.
Johnson allowed a run in four innings for the Red Sox Thursday night against the Angels in place of Steven Wright, who went on the disabled list with a knee injury early last week. Tuesday could be Johnson’s last turn in the rotation with Drew Pomeranz close to returning.
Roark is glad to put June in his rearview mirror. He went 1-4 with a 6.08 ERA in five starts and one relief appearance, surrendering 18 earned runs in 26 2/3 innings. He did show improvement last time out, allowing two runs — one earned — on seven hits over six innings of a 4-3 loss to the Phillies while sporting a mustache and mutton chops.
“Tanner pitched good enough to win and that was good to see,” Nationals manager Dave Martinez told the Washington Post. “He started off a little erratic and then all of a sudden he started getting the ball down, which is good. He pitched well.”
Roark, sounding like any respectably superstitious baseball player, told the Post he’s keeping the mutton chops.
“I feel like it’s a pretty decent look,” he said.
Joe Musgrove had quite the homecoming at Petco Park.
Pitching in front of at least 75 friends and family members, the right-hander tossed seven shutout innings against his hometown team and Jody Mercer homered to lead the Pittsburgh Pirates to a 6-3 victory over the sloppy San Diego Padres on Friday night.
Musgrove (3-3), a 2011 graduate of Grossmont High in suburban El Cajon [url=http://www.officialkings.com/authentic-adidas-derek-forbort-jersey]Authentic Derek Forbort Jersey Kids[/url] , was facing the Padres for the first time in his three-year big league career. He allowed seven singles while striking out five and walking two.
He had plenty of support as he got into and out of trouble in the seventh. The Padres had runners on first and third after hitting consecutive singles to open the inning but Musgrove retired the side, including inducing Manuel Margot to hit into an inning-ending double play.
”It was incredible,” Musgrove said. ”They were the ones who really pushed me through that last inning. I got first and third and no one out and all I could think about was all the people that are here watching me and how I’d love to get out of this and put on a little bit of a show for them. It was really cool. It was special.”
Musgrove did his best to not get distracted.
”Out of the gate when I’m out warming up, there’s people screaming right and left and every time I took a step I’m getting called from different directions,” he said. ”I was trying to block it out for the most part but I was also trying to acknowledge the people who were here. Throwing my bullpen there’s 50 of my friends standing right above the catcher hollering and stuff. I’ve always done well in front of my family and friends and that’s something that takes me to that next level.”
He had dinner at his parents’ house on Thursday night and planned to go out with them after the game, as well as have a local beer that’s named after the late Hall of Famer Tony Gwynn.
”Tonight was really special for me,” he said. ”It’s a night I’ll never forget.”
Musgrove was relieved by Steven Brault, a 2010 Grossmont grad. Brault had a short night, allowing two runs on two hits while getting just one out in the eighth.
”It was cool,” Brault said. ”Felt good coming in, felt confident. Some things didn’t go my way, and that happens. Overall the experience is something that is priceless. Something I never knew I’d actually get to have.”
Brault said it was ”pretty weird” to have two guys from the same high school pitch consecutively against their hometown team.
”If you told us six years ago, seven years ago, that that would happen, we’d probably both go, `That’s ridiculous,”’ he said. ”Just for it to actually happen, and for us to get a win out of it [url=http://www.redskinsfootballauthentics.com/pernell-mcphee-jersey-authentic]Youth Pernell McPhee Jersey[/url] , and Joe pitched so well tonight, it was just awesome to see. It was cool.”
Felipe Vazquez got the last two outs for his 16th save.
The Pirates won for the third time in nine games and the Padres lost for the 10th time in 12 games.
While Musgrove dominated, the Pirates piled on against rookie lefty Eric Lauer (3-5) and the Padres. The Pirates scored an unearned run in the first inning on two singles and Austin Hedges’ passed ball, and added four runs, including two unearned, in the third. Hedges and shortstop Freddy Galvis each had a throwing error. Gregory Polanco hit a two-run double and was thrown out to end the inning trying to stretch it into a triple. Josh Bell hit an RBI triple and Elias Diaz drove in a run on a fielder’s choice.
Mercer homered to center field leading off the fourth to make it 6-0. It was his fifth.
Lauer allowed six runs, three earned, on nine hits in five innings, struck out three and walked none.
Padres manager Andy Green was ejected before the top of the fourth inning by plate umpire Angel Hernandez. Green apparently was unhappy about a balk call against Lauer while trying to pick off Polanco in the second. The Pirates did not score that inning.
”We felt very strongly that it wasn’t,” Green said. ”That was not the story of the baseball game by any stretch. I don’t think we were very clean early in the game. We did what we’ve done very recently which is show a lot of fight late. It was just a little too late.”
Pirates: Placed RHP Chad Kuhl on the 10-day disabled list with a right forearm strain.
Padres: Green said OF Franchy Cordero is leaning toward having surgery to remove a bone spur from his right elbow.
Pirates: RHP Trevor Williams (6-5, 4.03), a 2010 graduate of San Diego’s Rancho Bernardo High, is scheduled to start the middle game of the series. He’s made one career start against the Padres, giving up four runs in six innings and getting a no-decision in an 8-5 Pirates loss at Pittsburgh on May 20.
Padres: LHP Joey Lucchesi (3-3, 3.57) is scheduled to make his third start since returning from a DL stint that lasted just more than a month.
Road weary and a bit homesick [url=http://www.authenticsnewenglandpatriots.com/cheap-trent-brown-jersey]Trent Brown Color Rush Jersey[/url] , the San Francisco Giants picked up a victory Sunday that could be the momentum needed to get a long stretch in the Bay Area off to a good start.
Nick Hundley and Brandon Belt each hit two-run home runs and Chris Stratton pitched six solid innings to help the San Francisco Giants avoid a three-game sweep at Los Angeles with a 4-1 victory over the Dodgers on Sunday.
It marked the end of the Giants’ fourth three-city road trip over the first 2 1/2 months of the season, and the last hurdle the club needed to clear before a stretch where they play 20 of the next 26 games at AT&T Park. After that, the Giants hit the All-Star break then play three interleague games at Oakland.
”We’re through the hardest part of the schedule, I think,” Belt said about the Giants already playing 42 of their 81 road games, exactly one month before the All-Star Game. ”It’s not easy going to the East Coast a lot and having 10-game road trips. We have a lot of games coming up at home and everybody is excited about that.”
Hundley got the Giants going early Sunday with a homer in the first inning, halfway up the pavilion seats in left field for his eighth of the season. Belt followed two innings later with his 12th home run and first since returning from an appendectomy on June 1.
The Dodgers saw their modest five-game win streak come to an end, but they are still 11-3 in June. They went 6-2 on their just-completed homestand and now head to Chicago for a National League Championship Series rematch with the Cubs.
The Giants went 4-6 on their 10-day road trip to Washington, Miami and Los Angeles, and now return home for a 10-game homestand against the Marlins, Padres and Rockies. They stay in the division for a six-game road trip then return for another 10-game homestand.
Sunday’s victory gave the Giants a 16-26 record away from home. They are 19-11 in San Francisco.
”We can’t have this road record, that’s not going to work, so we have to get better there,” Giants manager Bruce Bochy said. ”At home, we have to keep up what we have been doing there and hopefully the guys catch their breath and like the home cooking.”
Dodgers rookie pitcher Caleb Ferguson (0-1) gave up four runs on just two hits, the home runs from Hundley and Belt. He struck out six in his third career start, with an unearned run that happened when Gorkys Hernandez reached base on an error by shortstop Enrique Hernandez in front of Belt’s homer.
”Of the three (starts), this was his best outing,” Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said. ”I thought he did a great job of pounding the strike zone, getting some empty swings.”
Former Dodgers left-hander Tony Watson opened the ninth inning for the Giants with a strikeout of Max Muncy before closer Hunter Strickland recorded the final two outs for his 14th save in 17 chances.
STRATTON GETS HIS REVENGE
Stratton (8-4) entered 0-3 with a 7.88 ERA against the Dodgers, and was roughed up in an April 28 start when he gave up six earned runs over a short 1 1/3 innings, easily his shortest start of the year.
Sunday’s outing was in complete contrast to his previous efforts against the Dodgers.
”It was big,” Stratton said of his outing Sunday. ”Definitely the last time was not a pretty one. I have to credit Hundley back there behind the plate. I don’t think I had my best stuff today, especially with fastball command.”
Stratton gave up a first-inning run when Hundley tried to cut down Justin Turner at second base and threw the ball into center field. Max Muncy came home from third base on the error. Otherwise the right-hander was stingy against a Dodgers lineup that entered with 34 home runs in June.
Giants: C Buster Posey, who saw action in all 16 innings of Thursday’s game at Miami, was not in the starting lineup Sunday with what manager Bruce Bochy labeled ”general soreness.” SS Brandon Crawford will go on paternity leave Monday for the birth of his fourth child and said that he expects to miss three games.
Dodgers: RHP Tom Koehler had a setback in his recovery from a right shoulder strain and will now have to restart his rehab program, according to manager Dave Roberts. His targeted return has been pushed back to August. LHP Hyun-Jin Ryu had some tightness in his left groin strain and his recent bullpen outing was cut short to 20 pitches. Roberts would not call Ryu’s situation a setback, but would not confirm a July return either.
The Giants will send left-hander Andrew Suarez (2-4, 4.92 ERA) to the mound Monday as the club returns home from its 10-day road trip to face the Miami Marlins. In his second start since coming off the disabled list, RHP Kenta Maeda (4-4, 3.61) could be available for as many as 90 pitches Monday in the opener of a three-game series at Wrigley Field against the Chicago Cubs.
Jon Lester won his fifth straight start [url=http://www.thebroncosfootballauthentic.com/royce-freeman-jersey-authentic]Youth Royce Freeman Jersey[/url] , Javier Baez backed him with three hits and two runs, and the Chicago Cubs beat the Los Angeles Dodgers 4-0 on Wednesday.
Lester (9-2) gave up five hits over seven innings. Baez had two doubles, a triple and a steal. He also made some solid plays at shortstop and second base.
Kyle Schwarber hit his 14th homer, and Kris Bryant added two hits and an RBI. And the Cubs handed Ross Stripling his first loss since April 30, taking two of three in a rematch of the past two NL Championship Series.
Lester walked three and struck out one batter. Anthony Bass worked the final two innings to finish the six-hitter.
Stripling (6-2) had won six straight starts. The right-hander went six innings, allowing three runs and eight hits while striking out seven without a walk.
YANKEES 7, MARINERS 5
NEW YORK (AP) – Giancarlo Stanton lined a two-run homer with two outs in the bottom of the ninth inning, and New York erased a five-run deficit to beat Seattle.
Gary Sanchez tied the score with a two-run homer against Alex Colome in the eighth, and the Yankees went on to complete their largest comeback victory of the season.
Didi Gregorius singled with two outs in the ninth and Stanton hammered an 0-2 breaking ball from reliever Ryan Cook (1-1). The drive traveled a projected 453 feet to left-center for Stanton’s first walk-off homer with the Yankees – his previous one came in April 2014 for the Marlins (also vs. Seattle).
New York is a season-high 27 games above .500 with the majors’ best record at 49-22.
Aroldis Chapman (3-0) pitched a perfect inning for the win.
The Mariners have lost three straight for the first time since April 17-19 against the World Series champion Astros.
ASTROS 5, RAYS 1
HOUSTON (AP) – Jose Altuve homered twice, including the last of three straight by the Astros in the sixth inning, to lift Houston over Tampa Bay.
The game was tied in the bottom of the sixth when George Springer’s 15th homer made it 2-1. Two pitches later Alex Bregman sent an 87 mph slider from Rays starter Nathan Eovaldi (1-3) into the seats in left field for his 11th home run.
But the Astros weren’t done yet, as Altuve put one on the train tracks atop left field for the second time on Wednesday night to push the lead to 4-1. It was the first time the Astros hit three home runs in a row since May 2, 2008, when Miguel Tejada, Lance Berkman and Carlos Lee did it against Milwaukee.
It was a welcome display of power for a team that managed just five singles in a 2-1 loss to the Rays on Tuesday night that snapped Houston’s 12-game winning streak. The win made the Astros the first team to reach 50 victories this season.
Houston starter Charlie Morton (9-1) allowed just two hits and one unearned run in six innings.
TWINS 4, RED SOX 1
MINNEAPOLIS (AP) – Robbie Grossman and Max Kepler homered to back an effective start by Lance Lynn as Minnesota beat Boston.
Grossman led off the bottom of the first with a home run and Kepler added a two-run shot off David Price (8-5). Brian Dozier added a pair of doubles to help the Twins win for the fourth time in five games.
Lynn (5-5) again struggled with command, issuing five walks, but he gave up just one unearned run and three hits in five innings.
Four relievers combined for four scoreless innings, with Fernando Rodney securing his 16th save in 19 chances.
PHILLIES 4, CARDINALS 3
PHILADELPHIA (AP) – Odubel Herrera hit a tiebreaking solo homer in the seventh inning, Cesar Hernandez had a two-run shot and Philadelphia beat St. Louis.
Herrera ripped a 91 mph slider from Sam Tuivailala (1-3) off the scoreboard on the facing of the second deck in right field to give the Phillies a 4-3 lead. Herrera has a homer in four straight games.
Yadier Molina hit a pair of homers for the Cardinals off Phillies starter Jake Arrieta.
Edubray Ramos (2-0) got five outs and Adam Morgan retired the last two batters with the tying run on second for his first career save. The Phillies took two of three to win a series against the Cardinals for the first time since August 2014.
Cardinals starter Michael Wacha left in the fourth with a left oblique strain.
INDIANS 12, WHITE SOX 0
CLEVELAND (AP) – Corey Kluber became the first pitcher with 11 wins this season and Jose Ramirez and Jason Kipnis hit three-run homers in Cleveland’s victory over Chicago.
Reigning AL Cy Young winner Kluber (11-3) allowed only a second-inning single past third base by Omar Narvaez and a third-inning walk to Charlie Tilson in seven dominant innings. The right-hander struck out seven and retired the last 14 batters before giving way to George Kontos to begin the eighth. Josh Tomlin surrendered a double to Jose Abreu in the ninth before completing the combined two-hitter.
Kluber now has one more victory than Washington’s Max Scherzer and the Yankees’ Luis Severino.
Ramirez put the Indians ahead 3-0 in the first with his team-high 22nd home run off starter Reynaldo Lopez (2-5). He also extended his on-base streak to a career-high 28 games, scored three times and stole a base.
Kipnis’ three-run shot and Edwin Encarnacion’s two-run double were part of a six-run sixth against Bruce Rondon that pushed the lead to 11-0.
ATHLETICS 12, PADRES 4
SAN DIEGO (AP) – Light-hitting Franklin Barreto connected for a 424-foot, three-run home run, one of five long balls Oakland hit in routing San Diego.
Josh Phegley, Mark Canha, Matt Olson and Jed Lowrie also went deep for Oakland.
The A’s hit seven homers in sweeping the two-game series. Stephen Piscotty tied Tuesd
Aaron Altherr got his first lucky break in a while.
Left fielder Marcell Ozuna dived for and missed Altherr’s two-run double with two outs in the 10th inning [url=http://www.miamidolphinsteamonline.com]Dolphins Authentic Jerseys[/url] , allowing the Philadelphia Phillies to rally for a 6-5 win over the St. Louis Cardinals on Monday night.
Altherr had been hitless in his last 12 at-bats and 1 for 20 before the hit.
”The way things have been going, I thought he was going to catch it,” Altherr said. ”Thankfully he dove for it and it got by.”
Tommy Pham hit a solo homer in the top of the 10th, one inning after a wild pitch on a strikeout kept the game going. But the Phillies rallied.
Rhys Hoskins hit a bloop single to start the bottom of the 10th off Matt Bowman (0-2). Odubel Herrera dived headfirst into first to seemingly beat out an infield single, but the play was overturned by a video review. After Carlos Santana was intentionally walked, Bowman struck out Jesmuel Valentin.
Altherr then hit a sinking liner that appeared to skip off Ozuna’s glove before bouncing to the wall.
”It was so nice to see a ball bounce in his direction,” Phillies manager Gabe Kapler said of Altherr.
Cardinals manager Mike Matheny tried to explain the unusual strategy to put the winning run on base.
”Wanted to avoid their best hitter,” he said of Santana, who is batting .226.
On a day former closer Hector Neris was sent to the minors, Kapler’s aggressive use of the bullpen nearly cost him. Seranthony Dominguez – the team’s best reliever – wasn’t available after pitching 2 1/3 innings in the previous two games. So Kapler turned to Victor Arano and Adam Morgan in the ninth to protect a 4-2 lead. Neither pitcher has ever earned a save.
Yadier Molina hit a one-out single in the ninth off Arano, and Jedd Gyorko followed with a double. Arano struck out Harrison Bader and fanned Yairo Munoz, but Munoz reached when catcher Andrew Knapp failed to block the wild pitch and a run scored.
”I have to make that play. I have to block it,” Knapp said.
Morgan came in and allowed a tying single to Kolten Wong.
Pham hit a deep drive off Jake Thompson (1-1) for his 11th homer.
Matt Carpenter and Molina also hit solo homers for St. Louis. Molina caught his 1,757th game with the Cardinals, passing the Cubs’ Gabby Hartnett for the most games caught with one team.
Herrera hit a three-run homer for Philadelphia.
The Phillies’ bullpen wasted a strong start from Nick Pivetta. He had a career-high 13 strikeouts, allowing two runs and four hits in 7 1/3 innings in his best outing since May 21. Pivetta lost his previous four starts, posting a 7.11 ERA in those games.
Pivetta left after Carpenter hit a double high off the fence in right to put runners at second and third. Right fielder Nick Williams exited with a bloody face after the ball hit him on the carom.
Edubray Ramos entered and struck out Pham and Jose Martinez swinging at sliders.
The Phillies have won six of eight games while the Cardinals have lost six of eight.
Cardinals starter Miles Mikolas gave up four runs and six hits in five innings.
The Phillies are 5-1 in extra innings while the Cardinals are 5-6.
Neris was optioned to Triple-A Lehigh Valley, and lefty Austin Davis was recalled. Neris had a 6.00 ERA in 30 appearances, going 1-3 with 10 saves in 13 chances.
CARDINALS: 1B Martinez returned to the lineup after missing three games on paternity leave. 1B Luke Voit was optioned to Triple-A Memphis.
PHILLIES: RHP Jerad Eickhoff (right hand) is set to throw a bullpen session Tuesday. … Righty reliever Pat Neshek is scheduled to throw live batting practice Wednesday in the minors.
RHP Luke Weaver (3-6, 4.52 ERA) starts for the Cardinals and RHP Vince Velasquez (5-7, 4.74) goes for the Phillies on Tuesday night. Weaver has lost both of his career starts vs. Philadelphia. Velasquez is 1-1 vs. St. Louis, including a victory earlier this season.
NEW YORK — When the New York Yankees and Boston Red Sox get together for their next series, both teams could feature somewhat different rosters.
After Sunday’s finale of the three-game series at Yankee Stadium, the longtime rivals will not meet again until Aug. 2 at Fenway Park — two days after the non-waiver trade deadline.
Both teams will play 25 games before the next installment of the rivalry.
The teams head into the ninth meeting with four wins apiece after Chris Sale fanned 11 in seven one-hit innings in an 11-0 rout Saturday. Rafael Devers hit a grand slam among a career-high five hits while J.D. Martinez drove in three runs as the Red Sox rebounded from opening the series with an 8-1 loss Friday.
Devers has 14 RBIs in his last 12 games while Martinez is hitting .432 with 12 of his major league-leading 67 RBIs in his last nine games.
The Yankees will be looking to rebound from getting shut out for the fourth time this season and third time since June 23.
Off the field, trade talks were a popular topic as both Yankees general manager Brian Cashman and Red Sox general manager Dave Dombrowski addressed it.
The Yankees are in the market for a starting pitcher to bolster the back end of their rotation anchored by Sunday’s starting pitcher Luis Severino (12-2, 2.10 ERA).
With the crosstown New York Mets falling to one of the worst records in the National League, talk of a possible deal for Jacob deGrom is circulating, though Toronto’s J.A. Happ or Texas Rangers left-hander Cole Hamels could be more realistic.
“If the best business decisions happened to be with a rival, that’s not a problem for me [url=http://www.minnesotavikingsteamonline.com]Vikings Authentic Jerseys[/url] ,” said Cashman on Friday, while noting he has been in touch with Omar Minaya, one of three men holding the Mets GM role in Sandy Alderson’s leave of absence. “As far as I’m concerned it match just makes sense, I don’t care who (it’s) with.
As for the Red Sox, they already filled a need by adding a right-handed hitting first baseman in Steve Pearce. Pearce was obtained Thursday night from the Toronto Blue Jays but Dombrowski said Saturday the deal could have been completed earlier and any changes would not be overly significant.
“People are calling, and you just kind of check in and make sure they know what’s taking place and vice versa,” Dombrowski said Saturday afternoon. “The one thing with us is, we’re going to try to be the best club we can, regardless of what the Yankees do. And we all know that they have a really good team.”
Neither team is motivated to get something done now and both executives will watch Severino face David Price (9-5, 3.66) in a matchup of pitchers who are rolling of late.
Severino can become the first 13-game winner in the majors after he allowed six hits in seven scoreless innings Tuesday in Philadelphia.
“There’s no question that he’s our ace, and we know that when he gets the ball, he has a chance to dominate and we have a good chance to get it done that day,” Yankees manager Aaron Boone said Tuesday.
Severino also is 7-0 with a 1.83 ERA in nine home starts this season. He also is 10-0 with a 1.98 ERA in his last 13 regular season home starts, the longest streak at home since David Cone went 16 starts without a home loss from Aug. 17, 1997, to Aug. 27, 1998.
Severino’s home unbeaten streak matches Seattle’s Wade LeBlanc for the longest active streak in the majors.
The right-hander has turned in 14 straight starts without allowing more than three runs. It is the longest active streak in the majors and the longest by a Yankee starting pitcher since Rudy May from Aug. 2, 1980-April 20, 1981.
Besides racking up wins, Severino also is maintaining velocity, especially late in outings. His 98th pitch Tuesday was tracked at 100.1 mph, was among 12 at least 100 mph and his 44 pitches tracked at 100 leads all starting pitchers.
Severino’s last home loss was to the Boston Red Sox on Sept. 3. He is 2-5 with a 4.61 ERA in 10 appearances (nine starts) against Boston.
Price is 7-1 with a 2.72 ERA in his last nine starts and has allowed three earned runs or fewer in each outing. He last pitched Tuesday against the Los Angeles Angels and recorded his ninth win by allowing one run and five hits in six innings.
Things are going so well that he ended his press conference following his last outing by making fun of his carpal tunnel syndrome that some speculated was due to playing the video game Fortnite and kept him out of a game in New York in May.
“I don’t think I’ll be able to go, so I don’t think so,” Price said before adding “Yeah, Fortnite.”
Price is attempting to reach double-digits in wins before the All-Star break for the first time since 2012 with Tampa Bay and third time overall.
The left-hander is 15-12 with a 4.67 ERA in 39 appearances (38 starts) against the Yankees. At the current Yankee Stadium, he is 8-6 with a 4.27 ERA in 19 starts.
Since joining the Red Sox in 2016, he is 2-4 with a 7.42 ERA in eight starts against the Yankees.
Josh Cribbs has pulled off another stunning return.
A three-time Pro Bowler during eight seasons returning kicks for the Browns [url=http://www.steelersfootballauthentics.com/antonio-brown-jersey-authentic]Youth Antonio Brown Jersey[/url] , Cribbs is joining Cleveland’s coaching staff as a special teams intern.
Cribbs was a threat to score any time he lined up deep for a kickoff or punt, and he’ll now give some of his expertise to young, impressionable Cleveland players.
”I’ve earned their respect already as a player. Now I get to earn their respect as a coach,” Cribbs said. ”I pour into them all the knowledge I have to make them successful and make them do the things I did. I have this burning desire to be around football, to get back in the game. This is the closest way I can be around football, to still make an impact in the NFL. What better team for me to make an impact than the Cleveland Browns?”
Cribbs accepted the internship about a month ago from coach Hue Jackson. He’s working under new Browns special teams coordinator Amos Jones, who is showing him the coaching ropes.
He has quickly learned that coaching is as demanding as playing.
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An undrafted quarterback out of Kent State [url=http://www.steelersfootballauthentics.com/alejandro-villanueva-jersey-authentic]Youth Alejandro Villanueva Jersey[/url] , Cribbs became one of the NFL’s most dynamic and dangerous returners. He also played one season each for the New York Jets and Indianapolis Colts. Cribbs last played in 2014 and had considered a comeback before officially retiring last year.
Cribbs shares the league record with eight kickoff return touchdowns.
He had hoped to land an assistant’s job on Jackson’s staff, but when that opening was filled, he accepted the internship – starting from the bottom, just as he did as a player.
”I wanted to do everything I could to put him in position where he could be successful,” said Jackson, who is 1-31 in two seasons with the Browns. ”He was very open to it and we made a decision of, `Let’s start on the ground floor and work our way up.’ His reputation precedes itself. He was one of the best return guys in pro football. Plus he’s a Cleveland Brown. He’s one of our own. He told me over a phone call that he had a tremendous passion to get the organization back to winning and that means something to me.
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Indians starting first baseman Yonder Alonso will miss at least three games after being placed on the family-medical-emergency list.
Cleveland made the move Friday before opening a three-game series against Minnesota. The AL Central-leading Indians also activated center fielder Tyler Naquin from the disabled list. He had been sidelined with a hamstring injury since May 11.
Erik Gonzalez started the opener at first in place of Alonso, who is in his first season with Cleveland.
By major league rules, Alonso will have to miss a minimum of three days and a maximum of seven.
Alonso is batting .248 with 11 homers and 37 RBIs in 65 games.
Naquin was hurt running the bases in Kansas City last month. He’s batting .333 (25 of 75) with two homers and 11 RBIs in 30 games. He recently appeared in six games on a rehab assignment at Double-A Akron and Triple-A Columbus.
The Minnesota Vikings have activated quarterback Sam Bradford from injured reserve [url=http://www.officialflames.com/authentic-adidas-travis-hamonic-jersey]Womens Travis Hamonic Jersey[/url] , putting their original starter this season on the roster before their first playoff game.
The Vikings waived tight end Kyle Carter on Saturday to make room for Bradford, who last played at Chicago on Oct. 9 and returned to practice last week after recovering from a left knee injury. The Vikings host New Orleans on Sunday.
Bradford was stellar in the opening win against the Saints, but unable to play the following week. Case Keenum started the next three games. Bradford was back for the Bears game, but hobbled around in the first half before being pulled for Keenum.
Teddy Bridgewater and Kyle Sloter give the Vikings four quarterbacks on the active roster.
TORONTO — There was a sense of relief in the Detroit Tigers’ clubhouse after their 9-1 victory over the Toronto Blue Jays on Sunday afternoon.
The victory, propelled by a grand slam from Nicholas Castellanos, a career-best four hits by Niko Goodrum and seven strong innings by starting pitcher Jordan Zimmermann, ended an 11-game losing streak.
It was the Tigers’ longest losing streak since Aug. 13-23, 2003. They have not lost 12 in a row since 1996.
“It’s good to hear the music playing out there and guys smiling,” Tigers manager Ron Gardenhire said.
The Tigers have a chance to escape the Rogers Centre with a split in the four-game series by winning the finale on Monday afternoon.
The Tigers will start right-hander Mike Fiers (5-4, 4.04 ERA) against Blue Jays left-hander Ryan Borucki (0-1, 3.00).
The Tigers had a team meeting before the game.
“It was just a casual talk,” Gardenhire said. “It wasn’t this rah-rah (speech). … I just let them talk and I just said to them, ‘Tell me what we need to do.’ Some guys spoke up and that’s all I wanted to hear. We’re playing hard. We’ve lost 11 in a row up to this point. These guys have been playing [url=http://www.officialflames.com/authentic-adidas-troy-brouwer-jersey]Troy Brouwer Jersey[/url] , man. They’ve been in every game. We’ve had a chance to win a bunch of these games.”
The Tigers (37-48) were able to put together a five-run fifth inning with a rally that started with two outs against Toronto starter J.A. Happ, who was 6-0 in his previous eight starts. They added two runs in the sixth, also with a rally that began with two out.
The losing streak was the longest by two games in the majors this season and the longest since the Los Angeles Dodgers lost 11 in a row last September.
“We’ve had our chances over the last 10 or 11 games,” Zimmermann said. “It’s just a matter of if we’re going to cash in when we’ve got guys in scoring position. We were able to do that today.”
The Blue Jays (39-44) are expected to trade Happ before the July 31 deadline. When he departed in the sixth inning, the Canada Day crowd gave him an ovation.
“I did notice, and I certainly appreciate that,” Happ said. “Maybe it was appreciation for how the season has gone so far or whatever you might take from it, that’s kind of what I took from it. That’s a nice feeling, certainly nicer than potentially getting booed, not that I would expect that at all, either.”
The Tigers face a pitcher who made his major-league debut Tuesday against the Astros in Houston in Borucki. He took the loss after allowing two runs, six hits and four walks in six innings.
Fiers pitched seven strong innings Wednesday against the Oakland Athletics, but took the loss despite allowing only one run on five hits and one walk while striking out five.
Fiers has faced the Blue Jays six times in his career [url=http://www.officialstarsproonline.com/authentic-adidas-ben-bishop-jersey]Ben Bishop Jersey[/url] , five as a starter, and is 1-3 with a 4.11 ERA. He made two starts against Toronto last season and was 0-1 with a 5.25 ERA. In two career starts at the Rogers Centre, Fiers is 0-2 with a 5.91 ERA.
The only disappointing news for the Tigers Sunday came from a hamstring injury to center fielder Leonys Martin, who hobbled off the field after a beating out an RBI bunt single in the fifth inning. It was at first announced as a cramp, but Gardenhire said the injury was severe enough to put him on the disabled list. Another player will be brought in for the game Monday.
The day was not a complete loss for the Blue Jays. In the ninth inning, center fielder Kevin Pillar made a spectacular leaping catch to rob Castellanos of what would have been his second homer of the day.
Gardenhire said even Castellanos appreciated Pillar’s catch, although it cost him a homer.
“That was amazing,” Gardenhire said. “That’s a long run, to climb the wall like that and make that play, the timing, the whole package that just tells you how special an athlete he is.”
Super Bowl 52 will be played comfortably under the translucent U.S. Bank Stadium roof on a dry artificial turf [url=http://www.authenticskansascitychiefs.com]Chiefs Elite Jerseys[/url] , leaving the New England Patriots and Philadelphia Eagles without worries of traction trouble or kick-altering winds.
That doesn’t mean the workers in charge of preparing a surface that’s championship-sufficient were free from challenges.
The host Minnesota Vikings came close to reaching the big game, for one.
When they beat the New Orleans Saints with that last-play touchdown pass in the divisional round on Jan. 14, the NFL would have normally already been in takeover mode of the stadium by then. The victory by the Philadelphia Eagles over the Atlanta Falcons that weekend was a big help for the league’s exhaustive operations; it sent the Vikings on the road to face the Eagles for the NFC title rather than hosting another postseason game at their not-yet-2-year-old home.
”That would’ve really pushed us back and crunched the time,” said Ed Mangan, the NFL’s field director. ”We’ve had a few other teams in the past that got close, so you always start out with a `what if.’ You have a Plan A, a Plan B and a Plan C, and you have a backup plan for each one of those. So you’re always prepared for it.”
Then there’s the winter weather, which has its own share of the spotlight this week next to the Patriots and Eagles. Just because the game itself will be played in climate-controlled conditions doesn’t mean the crews are always comfortable, with some outdoor work to be done in the single-digit temperatures. The downtown setting, with a major hospital, several churches and plenty of apartment buildings within a few blocks of the front doors, added some urban-specific security hurdles.
Commuting to the site last week, too, could have been made trickier by a storm that dumped more than a foot of snow on the region. But the City of Minneapolis and Minnesota Department of Transportation snowplows produced a championship-caliber performance.
”We’ve never been held up getting anywhere,” said Mangan, whose team is also responsible for the practice facilities at suburban Vikings headquarters in Eden Prairie (for the Patriots) and at the University of Minnesota a short ride from downtown (for the Eagles).
So are all the preparations finally caught up?
The answer is yes, according to Eric Finkelstein, the NFL’s senior director of events.
”We’ve been talking to the team and were for multiple months, and we were able to delay the things that we knew we could afford to delay and get a jump on the stuff that we knew we had to get done, even during the playoff game run,” Finkelstein said.
Vikings fans are still decompressing from the loss to the Eagles that dashed their dream of an unprecedented Super Bowl on home turf. So having the home stadium as the backdrop for the big game could be a painful sight either on television or in person. The good news for them and their healing process is that almost all of the team’s logos will be invisible, covered by NFL and Super Bowl signage. The six-panel purple end zones have been pulled off, replaced with Patriots and Eagles paint.
”We want this to look like the Super Bowl and know that you’re here,” Finkelstein said.
The field itself remains the domain of the indefatigable George Toma [url=http://www.authenticslosangelesrams.com]Rams Elite Jerseys[/url] , the NFL’s grounds crew master who is working his 52nd Super Bowl. Yes, that’s all of them. He’ll turn 89 on Friday, and his pride in the job is just as high as it was five decades ago.
”The cheapest insurance for an athlete from preschool all the way up to professional is a good, safe playing field,” Toma said, ”and that’s what we try to do. For the people in the stands and the people on TV, we try to give them a field of beauty and then some.”
There’s less pressure, per se, this week than four years ago in New Jersey during the NFL’s first outdoor Super Bowl in a northern site. There’s still plenty to do.
More than 1,000 performers have been on the field at a time rehearsing for the halftime show. So Toma and his crew use a magnetic rake of sorts to comb the field for any stray nuts, bolts or random wardrobe pieces that might have popped off. They use a stamping tool to gauge the stiffness of the turf every 8 feet or so, to make sure there are no dangerous soft spots. The sand-rubber mixture that serves as the artificial sod underneath the fake grass is supposed to be 1+ inches thick.
Having worked two years for the Vikings at their practice facility and served as the spring training groundskeeper for the Minnesota Twins at their baseball facility in Fort Myers, Florida, Toma has a special affinity for this Super Bowl being held in Minnesota.
”I’ve been through a lot of stadiums worldwide, but in my book I love this stadium,” Toma said. ”This is the best stadium I’ve been in. Why? Everything’s right here for you. We come out that tunnel, and we’re only 100 feet to the playing field for our equipment and for our paint and everything. Not only that, but the people who run this stadium are outstanding, and then some.”
MINNESOTA (14-3) vs. PHILADELPHIA (14-3)
Sunday, 6:40 p.m. ET, Fox
OPENING LINE – Vikings by 3 1/2
RECORD VS. SPREAD – Minnesota 12-4-1, Philadelphia 11-5-1
SERIES RECORD – Tied 13-13
LAST MEETING – Eagles beat Vikings 21-10, Oct. 23, 2016
STREAKS, STATS AND NOTES – Eagles are 3-0 vs. Vikings in playoffs. … Vikings seeking first trip to Super Bowl in 41 years. Eagles seeking first Super Bowl appearance in 13 years. Neither team has won a Super Bowl. … Vikings are 6-16 on road in playoffs. … Vikings were 6-2 on road this season. … Minnesota led NFL in fewest yards allowed per game (275.9) for first time since 1993 and also allowed fewest points (15.8). … Vikings held opponents to 25.2 percent conversion on third downs, best mark in league. … Offense converted 43.5 percent on third down, third in league. … QB Case Keenum was second in NFL with 67.6 completion percentage. … RB Latavius Murray had 842 yards rushing and eight TDs. RB Jerick McKinnon had 570 yards rushing and three TDs. … WR Adam Thielen was fifth in NFL with 1,276 yards receiving and eighth with 91 receptions. … DE Everson Griffen tied for fourth in league with career-high 13 sacks. … LB Eric Kendricks has led team in tackles each of his first three seasons. His brother, Mychal, is LB for Philadelphia. … All-Pro S Harrison Smith tied career high with five picks. … WR Stefon Diggs had 137 yards receiving vs. Saints last week, including 61-yard game-winning reception on final play. … Eagles have reached conference championship six times since 2000, most appearances by NFC team in that span. … Eagles in NFC championship game for first time since losing 32-25 at Arizona on Jan. 18, 2009. … Eagles host NFC title game for first time since beating Atlanta 27-10 on Jan. 23, 2005. … Philadelphia is 14-7 at home in playoffs, including 5-3 at Linc. … Eagles are 14-3 at home under coach Doug Pederson, best home record in NFL over last two seasons. … Philly has outscored opponents 244-117 at home this season. … QB Nick Foles set franchise playoff record with 76.7 completion percentage vs. Falcons. … Foles has completed 46 of 63 (73 percent) for 441 yards, two TDs, no picks and 102.7 passer rating in two playoff starts. … RB LeGarrette Blount scored ninth career postseason rushing TD last week. … RB Jay Ajayi had 98 scrimmage yards (54 rushing, 44 receiving) vs. Atlanta. … K Jake Elliott’s 53-yard field goal vs. Falcons last week was longest in team’s postseason history. Elliott is 6 of 7 from 50 or more yards, but he’s 39 of 43 on extra points and missed one against Atlanta.
WASHINGTON — A pair of old friends will reconnect when the Boston Red Sox visit the Washington Nationals on Monday night.
Former teammates Rick Porcello (9-2 [url=http://www.packerscheapstore.com/paul-hornung-jersey-cheap]Paul Hornung Jersey[/url] , 3.60) of the Red Sox and Max Scherzer (10-4, 2.04) square off for the first time in the opener of a three-game series.
Porcello and Scherzer spent five seasons together with the Detroit Tigers, reaching the 2012 World Series before losing to the San Francisco Giants.
Since leaving Detroit, Porcello won the 2016 American League Cy Young Award and Scherzer is making a strong case for his third straight National League Cy Young. Both have been aware this matchup was coming.
“Looking forward to it. We’ve been texting back and forth,” Porcello told the Boston Globe. “We’ve had a good time with it and I’m sure we’ll both get a kick about going against each other once the game starts.”
Scherzer is looking for his first win since June 5, though he’s pitched well enough to win each of his past four starts, allowing two earned runs or less in each outing. The Nationals are 1-3 in those starts and were shut out in each loss.
“I think everybody’s been punched in the face before of not having success,” Scherzer told The Washington Post after his last start, a 1-0 loss to the Marlins. “This is the big leagues; they are going to keep coming down your throat and keep attacking you.”
Scherzer, Washington’s only dependable starter of late, is 4-4 with a 6.05 ERA in 10 starts versus Boston.
Porcello allowed four runs on eight hits in 5 2/3 innings last time out in a no-decision against the Angels.
He’s 1-0 with a 3.38 ERA in his lone start against Washington, an eight-inning effort in April of 2015.
The Nationals (42-40) squandered an early 3-0 lead in Philadelphia on Sunday and fell 4-3 in 13 innings on Andrew Knapp’s pinch-hit walk-off home run as Washington dropped a second straight weekend series to their division rivals.
Washington managed only four hits in eight innings against the Philadelphia bullpen in the finale.
“Offensively, we’ve got to do more,” outfielder Adam Eaton told The Post. “That’s plain and simple. We score early and then we can’t coast. We can’t take our foot off the accelerator. We got to keep going.”
The Nationals are now 6-15 in their past 21 games and fell six games behind Atlanta in the NL East.
In each of their last nine losses [url=http://www.packerscheapstore.com/ray-nitschke-jersey-cheap]Ray Nitschke Jersey[/url] , they’ve scored three or fewer runs.
“We’ve got to start striking out less,” manager Dave Martinez told MASN, “putting the balls in play, driving in runs when we have the ability to drive in runs.”
Boston (56-29) finished a three-game series against the Yankees on a forgettable note Sunday night, getting routed 11-1 behind starter David Price as New York blasted six home runs, including three by Aaron Hicks.
Price allowed eight runs on nine hits in 3 1/3 innings.
The Red Sox dropped two of three and travel south percentage points behind the Yankees in the AL East.
Robbie Ray looked like he was in All-Star form while making his first start in nearly two months.
Ray returned from the disabled list and pitched six scoreless innings to help the Arizona Diamondbacks beat the Miami Marlins 2-1 on Wednesday night.
”That was about as good as it could have been,” Ray said.
Ray (3-0) allowed two hits and issued two walks.
”I know there was one inning where his pitch count climbed, but aside from that I know it was vintage Robbie Ray,” Diamondbacks manager Torey Lovullo said.
Ray struck out six while throwing 56 of his 83 pitches for strikes in his first game since April 29. Ray had been on the disabled list with a strained right oblique.
”He turns into a different animal the day that he is starting and I saw it throughout his entire outing so it’s good to have him back,” Lovullo said.
Ray has won a career-long nine consecutive decisions over his last 15 starts since Aug. 24, 2017.
Daniel Descalso homered and Deven Marrero knocked in a run for the Diamondbacks, who have won six of seven.
Brad Boxberger allowed Starlin Castro’s leadoff homer in the ninth and walked the ensuing batter before retiring the next three for his 19th save in 23 chances.
Wei-Yin Chen (2-5) allowed one run and five hits in six innings for the Marlins.
”I pitched well, but the pitcher on the other side pitched better than me,” Chen said through a translator. ”He was successful in putting down our offense.”
Miami was held to just three hits.
The Marlins threatened in the fourth when Ray issued walks to the first two batters [url=http://www.packerscheapstore.com/reggie-white-jersey-cheap]Reggie White Jersey[/url] , but he calmly retired the next three, including the final two on strikeouts.
”I’m pretty tough on myself so I just took a step off the mound and told myself that, `You’re better than this, you shouldn’t be walking these guys, make them put it in play like you have been, get back in the zone, and get your outs,”’ Ray said. ”And I was able to get my focus back and get out of it.”
Ketel Marte doubled to lead off the fifth and scored on Marrero’s base hit.
Descalso hit a pinch-hit home run to lead off the eighth off Adam Conley in a battle of lefties. It was his sixth career pinch-hit homer and his ninth home run of the season.
”I don’t care if it’s righty, lefty, my job is to go up there and get a hit,” Descalso said. ”I feel like I’ve always had a pretty good approach against lefties. Conley is a tough lefty, his numbers are really good, but he fell behind there 2-0 and I was looking for something over the middle and he left a fastball that I could handle pretty easily.”
Castro’s homer was his fifth of the season and second in as many days.
”He always gets his hits,” Marlins manager Don Mattingly said. ”We saw a little bit of power the last two nights. Hopefully [url=http://www.authenticsjacksonvillejaguars.com/cheap-ronnie-harrison-jersey]Ronnie Harrison Color Rush Jersey[/url] , he can keep riding that.”
HIRANO TIES CLUB RECORD
Arizona’s Yoshihisa Hirano pitched one inning of relief and extended his scoreless game streak to 24, tying a club record set by J.J. Putz in 2012 and Brandon Lyon in 2008.
ANDERSON EXTENDS STREAK
Marlins rookie Brian Anderson walked in the fourth to extend his career-best, on-base streak to 24 games. That’s the longest active streak in the National League.
Diamondbacks: C Alex Avila (hamstring) was placed on the 10-day disabled list retroactive to June 24. ”He’s felt it for a while, but it was the game in Pittsburgh where it really jumped up on him and it became uncomfortable,” Lovullo said. … OF Steven Souza (pectoral) is 3 for 9 with a double and an RBI in two rehab assignment games with Single-A Visalia.
Marlins: C J.T. Realmuto (wrist) missed his third consecutive game. ”He took some swings, still a little sore,” Mattingly said. ”I talked to him before that if he’s feeling anything in there at all, I don’t want him swinging. That’s the one thing with hands and hitters, you start changing things and the next thing you know we’re going to be in an 0-for-20 (slump) or something, so we need to make sure he’s feeling like he can be himself. He was feeling it still at the finish of his swing. Better today than yesterday, but still not where we’re willing to take a chance.”
Diamondbacks: RHP Zack Greinke (7-5, 3.66 ERA) will start the fourth and final game of the series on Thursday. Greinke is 5-0 with a 1.77 ERA in five starts at Marlins Park.
Marlins: RHP Trevor Richards (2-4, 4.91) is coming off a win at Colorado in which he tossed six innings and allowed one run with eight strikeouts.
TORONTO — The Detroit Tigers will be trying to avoid making more history Sunday afternoon when they face the Toronto Blue Jays on Canada Day at the Rogers Centre.
After Blue Jays first baseman Justin Smoak smacked a 1-0 fastball from Joe Jimenez for his second career walkoff homer in the bottom of the ninth inning on Saturday [url=http://www.49ersauthorizedshops.com/authentic-dante-pettis-jersey]49ers Dante Pettis Jersey[/url] , the Tigers have lost 11 games in a row.
The last time the Tigers put together a losing streak like that was 2003. On Sunday, in the third contest of the four-game series, the Tigers will be trying to avoid dipping deeper into their history by losing 12 in a row for the first time since 1996.
The Tigers will start right-hander Jordan Zimmermann (2-0, 4.35 ERA) against Blue Jays left-hander J.A. Happ (10-3, 3.62).
Saturday looked promising for the Tigers when they took a 3-0 lead in the third inning, but the Blue Jays came back to tie in the fifth.
Both Toronto wins in the series have been by one run.
“Honestly, nobody wants to play extra innings,” Smoak said. “To be able to do it in the ninth and get it over with is always a good feeling.”
The Tigers would beg to differ. They would have been happy to try their luck in extra innings if that’s what it takes to end their funk.
“We’re all trying hard,” Tigers manager Ron Gardenhire said. “Everybody’s trying. We tried all kinds of things today to try to make this happen. And we were in the game again and ultimately we lose the ballgame.”
The Blue Jays have dominated the Tigers at the Rogers Centre in recent years, winning 12 of their past 14 meetings.
There could be times when it seems as if the Tigers might be trying a little too hard to make things happen and then paying for it. First baseman John Hicks, who hit his seventh home run of the season in the second inning Saturday, was not so sure that is the case.
“I don’t think guys are trying to do anything more than we’ve been trying to do all year,” he said. “We’re in a losing streak, but we’re going out every day playing the same way we’ve been playing all year. But when you are losing, things get magnified.”
Losing a close game or a lopsided one does not matter, Hicks said, adding “A loss is a loss.
“They all stink [url=http://www.greenbaypackersteamonline.com/tramon-williams-jersey]Tramon Williams Jersey[/url] , every loss is frustrating. It just happens to be in a losing streak, so it happens to magnify things more. We’ve had opportunities to win pretty much every ballgame we’ve lost.”
The task Sunday falls to Zimmermann, who will make his 10th start of the season.
Despite pitching five scoreless innings Monday against the Oakland Athletics, Zimmermann did not factor in the decision, He allowed four hits and three walks and struck out three.
In three career starts against the Blue Jays, Zimmermann is 1-1 with a 3.93 ERA. This will be his first start against Toronto since June 8, 2016, when he took the loss, giving up seven runs and eight hits with two walks and three strikeouts in 4 2/3 innings. He will be making his first career start at the Rogers Centre.
Happ has not lost since May 10. In his eight starts since, he is 6-0 with a 2.60 ERA. One of the no-decisions came June 2 in Detroit when he allowed four runs and had eight strikeouts against the Tigers in five innings.
In nine career games (eight starts) against the Tigers, he is 3-1 with a 4.10 ERA.
The Blue Jays lead the season series between the teams 3-2. Two games are left.
Both teams had injuries to relief pitchers Saturday. The Blue Jays put Ryan Tepera on the 10-day disabled list with inflammation in his right elbow and recalled Jake Petricka from Triple-A Buffalo.
Tigers reliever Alex Wilson left the game — and was replaced by Jimenez — in the eighth inning with a strained left calf. He is listed as day to day.
Aaron Boone bristles at the notion his New York Yankees are all or nothing, built entirely on home runs.
”I think it’s a silly argument,” the manager said. ”That does bother me, actually.”
Maybe, but it’s sure a quick way to light up the scoreboard.
Aaron Judge and Miguel Andujar hit two-run homers off James Paxton in the first inning that sent the Yankees over the Seattle Mariners 4-3 on Thursday for a three-game sweep.
Luis Severino and the Yankees boosted the best record in the majors to 50-22. They’ve won four in a row and 17 of 21.
”We’ve obviously played well, racked up a lot of wins,” Boone said. ”We’ve played well against some of the elite teams.”
Seattle [url=http://www.patriotsauthorizedshop.com/authentic-adrian-clayborn-jersey]Patriots Adrian Clayborn Jersey[/url] , which was 20 games over .500 coming into the Bronx this week, has lost a season-high four straight.
New York launched eight homers in the sweep and tops baseball with 122 long balls. Andujar sliced a drive the other way, and it barely settled into the short right-field porch.
”Both teams play in the same park. I thought it was a flyball because most places we play, it’s probably a flyball,” Paxton said. ”But it got out of here and that’s just the ballpark and you’re going to have that sometimes. You just have to deal with it and move on.”
Giancarlo Stanton homered in the first two games of the series and almost added another, but Mariners center fielder Mitch Haniger jumped to reach above the wall to rob him in the opening inning.
Severino (11-2) wasn’t at his best. He gave up Kyle Seager’s two-run homer in the second and permitted eight hits overall, matching a season most. He was pulled with two outs in the sixth after Ben Gamel’s RBI single cut Seattle’s deficit to one run.
”Today, I wasn’t the best,” Severino said.
Severino improved to 7-0 at home this season. David Robertson and Dellin Betances protected the lead, and Aroldis Chapman struck out Dee Gordon on three pitches with a runner on second for his 22nd save in 23 chances,
Paxton (6-2) vigorously pawed at the dirt in front of the rubber for a full 15 seconds before throwing his first warmup pitch. Coming off his shortest start of the year against Boston, he never got settled in his first career start facing the Yankees.
Clint Frazier led off with a single and Judge followed with his 19th homer. Gleyber Torres singled with two outs and Andujar’s fly became the rookie’s 10th home run.
Paxton drifted a few steps onto the grass as the ball flew and gazed toward center field when it left the park. Andujar was among several New York hitters who successfully went the opposite way against the big lefty.
”Just kind of had trouble getting it going today,” he said. ”I didn’t really have much going, early especially, and just had to battle. I didn’t have much. Made some better pitches late, but just really, not much command. Just a tough day.”
Paxton had been 5-0 in 10 starts since April [url=http://www.eaglesauthorizedshops.com/authentic-paul-worrilow-jersey]Eagles Paul Worrilow Jersey[/url] , including a no-hitter at Toronto. He went five innings and threw 107 pitches, the same total as Severino.
The first day of summer brought a sellout crowd that included a bunch of camp kids who cheered most every flyball. Also in attendance was an older Boy of Summer – 90-year-old Tommy Lasorda watched from a box, along with Kentucky coach John Calipari and Dallas Cowboys coach Jason Garrett.
NICE TO SEE YA
Seattle shortstop Andrew Romine started against his brother, Yankees catcher Austin, for the first time in the majors. They had a good laugh when the 32-year-old Andrew came up to lead off the second inning, and he playfully popped his 29-year-old sibling in the chest protector.
”That’s big bro,” Austin said. ”He got me pretty good.”
Frazier has scored a run in all seven games he’s played this season. He’s also gotten a hit in all when he’s batted. The 23-year-old was in the leadoff spot for the first time in his big league career and played center field. He’s batting .368 after getting two hits.
Frazier sustained a concussion in spring training and had been in the minors until recently. The red-haired sparkplug knows he could be headed back to Triple-A when a sore Brett Gardner heals.
”Thought about it every day,” Frazier said.
Is there a way he could stay on the roster?
”I think there’s an avenue for that,” Boone said.
Mariners: OF Guillermo Heredia again was out of the starting lineup. He’s in an 0-for-15 skid, part of a rough June. He pinch ran in the eighth and was caught stealing at second.
Yankees: Put RHP A.J. Cole on the 10-day disabled list because of a left neck strain, a move was retroactive to Wednesday. RHP Luis Cessa was reinstated from the 10-day DL (oblique); he hasn’t pitched for the Yankees since April 17.
Mariners: LHP Wade LeBlanc (3-0, 2.63 ERA) starts at Fenway Park vs. Boston knuckleballer Steven Wright (2-1, 1.23). LeBlanc pitched into the eighth inning against Boston in his last outing, a 1-0 win.
Yankees: LHP CC Sabathia (4-2, 3.30) starts at Tampa Bay. He lost to the Rays in his last start, striking out 10 and giving up 10 hits in 7 2/3 innings.
The Latest on the NFL playoffs on divisional weekend (all times EST):
The Steelers aren’t going down easily.
Le’Veon Bell took Ben Roethlisberger’s lateral and ran 8 yards for a TD as Pittsburgh cut Jacksonville’s lead to 42-35 with 2:18 left.
Big Ben scrambled from the pocket and ran for 1 yard before swinging the ball to Bell [url=http://www.titansfootballauthentics.com/harold-landry-jersey-authentic]Youth Harold Landry Jersey[/url] , who beat one Jaguars defender for the game’s 11th TD.
Pittsburgh then tried an onside kick that was recovered by the Jaguars.
– Tom Withers reporting from Pittsburgh.
The Jaguars answered back.
Blake Bortles threw a 14-yard touchdown pass to fullback Tommy Bohanon with 4:19 left to give Jacksonville a 42-28 lead over the Steelers.
After Pittsburgh closed within seven for the second time in the half, Bortles drove the Jags 75 yards for the crucial score. Bohanon got behind Pittsburgh’s linebackers and Bortles completed the scoring toss with ease.
Here come the Steelers again.
Antonio Brown caught a 43-yard TD pass from Ben Roethlisberger with 9:05 left to bring Pittsburgh within 35-28 of Jacksonville.
It was Brown’s second TD and it revived the Steelers, who fell behind by 14 moments earlier.
The Steelers have come back after trailing 21-0 and 28-7.
– Tom Withers reporting from Pittsburgh.
The Jaguars are 10 minutes away from a spot in the AFC championship game.
Leonard Fournette’s 3-yard touchdown run with 10:34 remaining gave Jacksonville a 35-21 lead over the Steelers.
After Jacksonville’s defense stopped Pittsburgh on fourth down, Jaguars quarterback Blake Bortles completed a 45-yard pass to Keelan Cole to set up Fournette’s third TD. The rookie running back was sidelined for part of the first half with an ankle injury.
Jacksonville was trying to hang on after seeing a 28-7 lead trimmed to seven.
– Tom Withers reporting from Pittsburgh.
The Jacksonville Jaguars are trying to hold on against the Pittsburgh Steelers.
The upstart Jaguars hold a 28-21 lead going into the fourth quarter at chilly Heinz Field. Jacksonville led by 21 points in the second quarter after a 48-yard fumble return for a touchdown by Telvin Smith but Pittsburgh has responded behind quarterback Ben Roethlisberger.
Roethlisberger has thrown for 258 yards and three scores through three quarters. Pittsburgh running back Le’Veon Bell has 116 yards and a score for the Steelers.
Ben Roethlisberger is heating up and the Pittsburgh Steelers are back in it against the Jacksonville Jaguars.
Roethlisberger hit a diving Le’Veon Bell for a 19-yard touchdown pass early in the third quarter to pull the Steelers within 28-21 of the Jaguars in their divisional round showdown.
The touchdown was Roethlisberger’s third of the game. He’s also thrown an interception that led to a Jacksonville score and had a fumble returned for a touchdown.
The Steelers trailed by 21 points late in the first half. The biggest playoff comeback in franchise history came 15 years ago when they rallied from 17 down to beat Cleveland in the wild-card round.
Jacksonville running back Leonard Fournette returned in the second half after leaving in the second quarter with an ankle injury.
– Will Graves reporting from Pittsburgh
The Jacksonville Jaguars are 30 minutes from a trip to New England for the AFC championship game.
Leonard Fournette ran for a pair of touchdowns and the upstart Jaguars have a 28-14 lead over the Pittsburgh Steelers at halftime of their divisional round showdown before leaving with an ankle injury.
T.J. Yeldon also has a touchdown run for the Jaguars and linebacker Telvin Smith scooped up Ben Roethlisberger’s fumble and returned it for a score.
Roethlisberger has touchdown passes to Antonio Brown and Martavis Bryant but has also committed two turnovers.
The Jaguars are looking for their third trip to the AFC title game in franchise history.
– Will Graves reporting from Pittsburgh.
Jacksonville running back Leonard Fournette has gone to the locker room with an ankle injury.
Fournette appeared to tweak his ankle on a spin move after catching a 10-yard pass from Blake Bortles in the second quarter. Fournette, who earlier scored on a 1-yard dive [url=http://www.dallascowboysteamonline.com/customized]Customized Dallas Cowboys Jerseys[/url] , was checked on the sideline before he limped to the locker room for treatment and evaluation.
The Jaguars said Fournette’s return is questionable.
Jacksonville led 21-7 when Fournette got hurt.
– Tom Withers reporting from Pittsburgh.
The Steelers are down on the scoreboard and a starting right tackle.
Marcus Gilbert is being evaluated for a concussion after he was injured when Pittsburgh was stuffed on a fourth down running play late in the first quarter by Jacksonville’s swarming defense. Gilbert walked to the sideline without assistance, but the team said his return is questionable.
He was replaced on Pittsburgh’s next possession by Chris Hubbard.
The Jaguars took a 21-0 lead early in the second quarter on T.J. Yeldon’s 4-yard run.
Also, Steelers linebacker Vince Williams is being evaluated for a concussion.
– Tom Withers reporting from Pittsburgh.
The Jacksonville Jaguars are taking it to the Pittsburgh Steelers.
vJhoulys Chacin settled down nicely after a rough start.
Trailing 2-0 after the first three batters of the game [url=http://www.authenticsdetroitlions.com/cheap-kerryon-johnson-jersey]Kerryon Johnson Color Rush Jersey[/url] , Chacin threw seven solid innings and Hernan Perez homered among his three hits, leading the Milwaukee Brewers to a 7-2 victory over the Atlanta Braves on Thursday night in a matchup of first-place teams.
NL Central Division-leading Milwaukee won its fourth game in a row to go 17 games over .500 (52-35) for the first time since July 1, 2014, when the Brewers were 51-34.
Chacin (7-3) gave up three hits and two earned runs while matching a season high with seven strikeouts in what tied for his longest outing this year. The right-hander, who was 0-2 in his previous three starts while allowing 10 runs in 15 2/3 innings, retired 20 of the last 24 batters he faced.
”Jhoulys pitched excellent – after the first,” Milwaukee manager Craig Counsell said. ”He locked it in and made some really good pitches the rest of the night.”
Dan Jennings pitched two perfect innings for his first save this season, and second of his career.
NL East-leading Atlanta dropped its third consecutive game after winning four straight – and lost for the first time this season on a Thursday (7-1).
Braves left-hander Max Fried (1-3) lasted only three innings in his third start of the season, giving up four earned runs and four hits with three walks.
”He had a blister starting and he’s had a history of the blister thing,” Atlanta manager Brian Snitker said. ”And when it kind of surfaced [url=http://www.buccaneersauthorizedshops.com/authentic-ryan-jensen-jersey]http://www.buccaneersauthorizedshops.com/authentic-ryan-jensen-jersey[/url] , I decided I didn’t want to take any chances, so I shut him down.”
Atlanta gave Fried a 2-0 lead in the first, but he allowed a run in the bottom of the frame and did not help his cause in the second. After a leadoff triple by Perez and a walk to Keon Broxton, Milwaukee tied it at 2 on a single by Tyler Saladino. Fried failed to hold the runners on first and second by not even looking at them, so Broxton and Saladino converted a double steal. Erik Kratz’s groundout scored Broxton to give Milwaukee a 3-2 lead.
”We’re getting the right guys out there, trying to do our homework and find spots when we can take advantage of something,” Counsell said.
Then, Fried not only walked Chacin, he fired a wild pitch that bounced off the backstop on ball four. Catcher Tyler Flowers retrieved the ball and threw to Fried covering the plate. But Saladino – who appeared to be an easy out – slid awkwardly in front of the plate and knocked it out of the pitcher’s glove. Saladino got up and stepped on the plate for a 4-2 lead.
Perez hit a two-run homer – his fifth – off reliever Dan Winkler in the eighth.
MORE MOUND MISCUES
In the first, Ozzie Albies scored from third on a grounder hit by Freddie Freeman. Chacin fielded the ball [url=http://www.greenbaypackersteamonline.com/nick-perry-jersey]Nick Perry Jersey[/url] , looked at Albies and then slowly lobbed a high toss to first which allowed the speedster to score without a throw home. … In the eighth, Winkler’s pickoff attempt at first hit Jonathan Villar in the head and the ball ended up in Milwaukee’s dugout for an error. Villar took second and scored on a single by Christian Yelich.
FREEMAN STILL SLUMPING
In his previous nine games in Milwaukee, Freeman was hitting .419 (13-for-31) with six home runs and seven walks. But that did not end his slump, as he was 0 for 3 and is now batting .154 (10-for-65) in his last 16 games.
Braves: RHP Julio Tehran is not in Milwaukee after coming down with an illness while the team was in New York. Since he was not scheduled to start against the Brewers, the Braves sent him back to Atlanta.
Brewers: INF Saladino (left ankle sprain) was activated from the disabled list and INF Eric Sogard was designated for assignment.
Braves: RHP Mike Foltynewicz (6-4, 2.02) is 1-1 all-time against Milwaukee.
Brewers: Rookie RHP Freddy Peralta (3-1, 2.28) makes his sixth start.
Jesse Winker hit his first career game-ending homer against the Rockies on June 7 and got a pair of Carlos Gonzalez’s white batting gloves during the series as a keepsake. He wore them for another career breakthrough on Thursday night.
Winker hit his first major league grand slam during a big sixth-inning rally [url=http://www.coltscheapshop.com/cheap-authentic-nate-hairston-jersey]Nate Hairston Jersey[/url] , putting Matt Harvey in line for his second win for the Cincinnati Reds, 6-2 over the Chicago Cubs. The Reds sent 11 batters to the plate and scored six times, matching their biggest inning of the season .
”Guys put together great at-bats in front of me,” Winker said. ”Obviously, you can’t hit a grand slam unless guys get on base.”
Kyle Hendricks (5-7) walked three to set up the two-out rally, including Eugenio Suarez with the bases loaded. Hendricks has equaled his career high with four walks in each of his last two starts.
”That’s not me, giving up walks like that,” Hendricks said. ”Those were the problem there.”
Winker connected on the second pitch from left-hander Randy Rosario, who hadn’t allowed a homer this season. The Reds’ sixth grand slam of the season moved them into a tie with Boston for most in the majors.
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Harvey (2-5) went six innings for his first victory since May 22, allowing five hits, including Javier Baez’s two-run double. He’d lost his last three decisions with the Reds, who got him from the Mets for catcher Devin Mesoraco in a deal on May 8.
”He was really good,” interim manager Jim Riggleman said. ”He’s getting better and better.”
Harvey plunked Kris Bryant on the left hand and Anthony Rizzo on the left shin in the third inning, but both remained in the game. Baez’s two-run double was his fourth extra-base hit in the last two games.
Amir Garrett relieved and fanned Rizzo on three pitches to end a bases-loaded threat in the seventh. Jared Hughes pitched out of a two-on jam in the eighth and finished for his fifth save.
The Reds have won four straight, their second-best streak of the season. They took six in a row from May 8-13.
The Reds put outfielder Scott Schebler on the bereavement list, optioned struggling left-handed reliever Wandy Peralta to Triple-A Louisville, and called up outfielder Phillip Ervin and left-hander Kyle Crockett. They also released catcher Tony Cruz.
The Reds’ comeback left the NL Central teams tied 3-3 in their season series. Chicago has gone 43-20 against Cincinnati since 2015, including a 23-11 mark at Great American Ball Park.
Scooter Gennett gave Hendricks a workout with a 12-pitch at-bat in the first inning before flying out.
Joey Votto came into the game 8 for 16 in his career against Hendricks with a pair of homers and 10 walks. He grounded out [url=http://www.newyorkgiantsteamonline.com]Giants Authentic Jerseys[/url] , struck out and walked.
Harvey tried to put down a sacrifice bunt in the fifth, but catcher Willson Contreras quickly got to the ball and threw to second to start an inning-ending double play.
Jason Heyward had three singles and a double for his ninth career four-hit game. … The Reds have six grand slams in the last 31 days. The only other teams in NL history with six in 31 days were the 1996 Expos, the 1997 Braves and the 2006 Mets, according to STATS. … Suarez extended his hitting streak to a career-high 11 games.
Cubs: Yu Darvish felt good a day after throwing 50 pitches in a simulated game, manager Joe Maddon said. He could begin a rehab assignment soon. Darvish has been sidelined since May 23 because of tendinitis in his right triceps. … Left-handed reliever Brian Duensing could rejoin the team Friday. He’s been on bereavement leave following his grandfather’s death.
Cubs: Jose Quintana (6-5) started at Great American Ball Park on May 19 and allowed just one hit in seven innings of a 10-0 win. He’s 2-0 in three career starts against the Reds. The left-hander has been much better on the road this season: 2.78 ERA in eight starts compared to a 6.00 ERA in six starts at Wrigley Field.
Reds: Luis Castillo (4-8) has lost his last four starts, allowing 16 earned runs in 20 2/3 innings. One of his best starts came against the Cubs on May 19, when he gave up one run in five innings of a 5-4 victory.
[img]http://www.sndpic.com//nike_nfl_jerseysPutting together a documentary of a Super Bowl season is an extensive and exhausting project.
Except when it becomes a labor of love.
For dozens of employees at NFL Films [url=http://www.jaguarscheapshop.com/cheap-authentic-jalen-ramsey-jersey]Jalen Ramsey Jersey[/url] , the 2017 Philadelphia Eagles season was particularly special. Thus, the DVD that chronicles it and becomes available to the public on Tuesday – PHI-NALLY is how it is dubbed – wasn’t exactly work.
”We are in Mount Royal, New Jersey, which is about 20 minutes from the Linc,” says Todd Schmidt, who produces such enterprises for NFL Films. ”So many of our people are lifelong fans of the Eagles, who have suffered for all those years. And that is something the becomes part of the film; we wanted people out there to understand what some of these people went through during that crazy game and this season.
”I would love for an Arizona Cardinals fan to get the same bang out of this as my 22-year-old son and a lifelong Eagles fan will, and I like to think that the story will do that. This is more than a story of a football season. It’s about why teams and fans don’t quit, and that’s what Philly fans are like. They may get a lot of criticism, but there’s a reason Rocky means so much and showing the heart to never give up means so much.”
NFL Films had the good fortune of being able to place microphones on coach Doug Pederson and quarterback Nick Foles. The exchanges between them not only are insightful football-wise, they provide a window into the aggressiveness that was so critical to not only upending the Patriots in a classic Super Bowl, but in the Eagles putting together such a successful season.
Indeed, Philadelphia’s 41-33 victory in Minneapolis probably made for a much more enchanting story than had the Patriots won. After all, New England taking the NFL title is anything but new, and the Eagles last won it in 1960, when Norm Van Brocklin was the quarterback and Chuck Bednarik was playing linebacker and center.
So Schmidt opted to open the documentary with a shot of Franklin Field on the University of Pennsylvania campus – the site of that 1960 win over Green Bay. And he decided to close the film with the parade witnessed by more than 700,000 ”so you get a clear idea of what this meant to the city of Philadelphia, the people of Philadelphia, and to Eagles fans.”
NFL Films actually makes two 55-minute films annually. The 2017 version of the Patriots’ season ”will not see the light of day,” Schmidt explains. But it also would have had plenty of cachet.
”I think every team has a story,” he says, though how many viewers would be interested in, say, the Browns‘ 0-16 campaign is debatable.
”Had the Patriots won, it would have been a film of dominance; if they had won they would have been the `27 Yankees. It would have been magnificent if they had pulled out that game, two of the most amazing Super Bowls back to back. Tom Brady would go down as the greatest magician ever to walk the earth.
”We are storytellers and we would have made the elements we had work well.”
Still, the elements they had on Philadelphia’s side certainly seem more compelling. A team loses five key players, including late in the schedule the QB who appeared headed to league MVP honors. It’s an underdog in all of its postseason games despite being a top seed. Its history of falling short is monumental.
And then it wins a classic Super Bowl against an NFL dynasty.
”The Eagles story has a lot more historical context, which is red meat to a storyteller,” Schmidt says. ”The more context and unique elements of the story, the better the story. So I loved the Eagles story.”