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hongwei28

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  1. It didn’t seem to matter much who was pitching against DJ LeMahieu. After striking out in his first at-bat Authentic Jordan Whitehead Jersey , the Rockies leadoff hitter was as locked in as he’s been all season. Especially in the ninth inning when Colorado trailed. LeMahieu hit a two-run homer in the ninth and set a career best with five RBIs as the Rockies rallied past the San Francisco Giants 9-8 on Thursday to snap a four-game losing streak. ”It was a good one to win,” LeMahieu said. ”I feel like we’ve been on the other end of that for the last couple of weeks so it was good to win that one late.” Nolan Arenado hit his 19th home run, tying him for the National League lead with Washington’s Bryce Harper. Trevor Story added three hits for Colorado, which had lost four straight at San Francisco. The Rockies blew leads of 5-2 and 7-5 and were down 8-7 before scoring twice off closer Sam Dyson (2-2) to avoid a series sweep. Chris Iannetta hit a leadoff single in the ninth and was replaced by pinch-runner Pat Valaika. After pinch-hitter Tom Murphy popped out, LeMahieu sent a full-count pitch from Dyson into the left-field stands. Two nights earlier, Dyson got LeMahieu to ground into a game-ending double play with the tying run on base. ”It was roughly where we wanted,” Dyson said. ”I figured we’d go (inside) like we did two nights ago. Just didn’t get it far enough in there.” It was a big hit for a ballclub that had been 0-37 when trailing going into the ninth. ”That was a big swing when the momentum shifted back to them in a big way,” Rockies manager Bud Black said. ”It takes a special moment and a special swing to get it back on our side and DJ put a great swing on that ball. It was awesome.” LeMahieu had an RBI single as part of Colorado’s four-run fourth. His two-run single off Ty Blach in the seventh gave the Rockies a 7-5 lead. Each of LeMahieu’s hits came off different pitchers. ”He knows the opposition, he knows pitchers,” Black said. ”He’s as prepared as any player I’ve been around.” Adam Ottavino (4-1) gave up two runs but retired three batters to win. Wade Davis pitched the ninth for his 22nd save. All three games in the series were decided by one run. Brandon Belt hit a two-run homer, Joe Panik had two hits and two RBIs while Pablo Sandoval and Andrew McCutchen also had two hits for San Francisco. The Giants trailed most of the afternoon but took an 8-7 lead in the eighth when Alen Hanson doubled in two runs. ”That was a hard fought game Authentic Rashaan Evans Jersey ,” San Francisco manager Bruce Bochy said. ”Tough one when you have a lead in the ninth and we couldn’t hold on to it. Sam was just a little bit off.” Arenado homered off starter Chris Stratton in the first, his 10th this season in the opening frame. It was also Arenado’s 10th career home run at AT&T Park, tying former Rockies infielder Troy Tulowitzki for second-most among visiting players. Arizona’s Paul Goldschmidt has 11. Neither starter factored in the decision and had nearly identical lines. Stratton allowed five runs on eight hits in four innings. Colorado’s Jon Gray also gave up five runs in four innings but yielded seven hits with seven strikeouts. BACK TO BACK Giants catcher Nick Hundley threw out a pair of runners trying to steal second base in consecutive at-bats in the eighth. Story hit a leadoff single but was thrown out. Gerardo Parra then reached on an error but was quickly erased when he tried to take second GOLDEN COMPANY Golden State Warriors coach Steve Kerr, a noted Dodgers fan, attended the game and sat next to the Giants dugout, at one point reaching over to shake hands with Bochy. TRAINER’S ROOM Giants: C Buster Posey was held out of the starting lineup due to the pitching matchup but had a pinch-hit single in the eighth. UP NEXT Rockies: LHP Tyler Anderson (4-3, 4.62 ERA) faces the Dodgers in the opener of a three-game series in Los Angeles on Friday. Anderson is unbeaten in nine road starts this season. Giants: LHP Andrew Suarez (2-4, 4.43) takes the hill against the Diamondbacks on Friday. ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. — The Tampa Bay Rays were a wobbly 34-40 on June 20, but have pitched their way back to .500 mostly without true starting pitchers. On Saturday, five relievers combined to outduel Justin Verlander in a 5-2 victory Authentic Harold Landry Jersey , and as the series wraps up Sunday, the Rays are on even footing with the pitching-dominant Houston Astros on the mound. “It’s pretty remarkable what they’ve strung together here as of late, and today was no different,” Rays manager Kevin Cash said after Saturday’s win. The Rays turn to their best starter of the first half in Blake Snell, who looks to be a first-time All-Star with a 10-4 record and a 2.31 ERA. Snell has taken only one loss in his last eight starts, and was superb against the Astros on June 19, throwing seven innings and holding a potent lineup to one run and three hits in a 2-1 victory. He managed to survive seven walks, including three in one scoreless inning, getting key double plays to work his way out of predicaments. In his last seven starts, Snell has a 1.27 ERA. He is 1-1 with a 5.21 ERA in four career starts against Houston. The Rays, who have been above .500 for only three days all season Authentic Da'Ron Payne Jersey , face a stiff challenge Sunday in Astros right-hander Charlie Morton. Morton (10-1, 2.54) hopes to continue a career resurrection since coming to Houston. Before arriving, he was 46-71 in his career. Since joining the Astros, he’s 24-8 in two seasons with a career-low ERA this year and a career-best strikeout rate of 11.5 per nine innings. Morton is 3-0 in his last four games, with three earned runs allowed in his last 19 innings and none in his last two starts. He faced the Rays on June 20 and dominated, throwing six innings and holding Tampa Bay to two hits and one unearned run. He was even better in his last start, holding Toronto scoreless in seven innings while striking out 13, one off his season and career high. Houston manager A.J. Hinch doesn’t like playing at Tropicanaa Field, and his team’s bats have been stifled in all three games, including Thursday’s 1-0 victory. The Astros have lost eight games this season with Verlander starting, and in six of those losses Authentic Derrius Guice Jersey , they’ve scored a total of five runs. “I hate the results at this ballpark, if you look back at what we’ve done,” Hinch said. “Those are facts. It is what it is. We have another game (Sunday). We need to figure it out before then.” Astros standout Alex Bregman said the stadium has given Houston problems, but some of the credit should go to Rays pitchers, who have given them fits this weekend. “I don’t know if it’s the ballpark. I think they just have a good staff,” Bregman said. “They have been playing really good ball as of late.”
  2. All-Pro cornerback Jalen Ramsey did pretty much the same thing that upset his Jacksonville Jaguars teammates last week. He started looking ahead. Ramsey told thousands of fans awaiting the team’s return from Pittsburgh late Sunday that the Jaguars ”are going to the Super Bowl and we are going to win that (expletive).” Jacksonville (12-6) Taven Bryan Color Rush Jersey , of course, has the AFC championship game at New England remaining before even getting to the Super Bowl. The small-market franchise is winless in seven games in Foxborough, Massachusetts, and 1-10 all-time against the Patriots (14-3). Ramsey’s comments surely will find their way north. ”You come back and you’ve got all the fans here and things of that nature,” Jaguars coach Doug Marrone said. ”Obviously that’s something that everybody, they want to do when you get close. Whether you have to say it or not? The one thing I do know is the road to it always leads through New England. ”Our focus isn’t on anything else but the New England Patriots. It will be a great challenge for us obviously.” The Jags took exception to the Steelers talking about facing the Patriots instead of them, and used it as motivation in a 45-42 victory Sunday. Nonetheless, they stood behind their outspoken and ultra-talented defender. ”To me, it’s just a man that has confidence in his team,” defensive tackle Abry Jones said. ”What’s he going to say? He knows what we’re going up there to do. It’s not like he ain’t saying nothing that’s not true.” Fellow defensive tackle Malik Jackson said the difference between Ramsey’s remarks and comments from Steelers coach Mike Tomlin, running back Le’Veon Bell and safety Mike Mitchell is the timing. ”We’re so close that I think it’s OK to say, `Hey, we’re going to do this,”’ Jackson said. ”It’s one of those things that I think he believes in himself after the game he just had, locking down one of the best receivers in the game. ”He’s pretty hyped and he wants to let everybody know he’s hyped, so I think he’s just happy and he understands that we have a giant in front of us and we’ve just got to pay all the attention to this team. ”We don’t even know who’s going to play in the Super Bowl because we’re not looking ahead to that.” Ramsey was unavailable during the team’s open locker room session Monday. ”He’s going to talk Minkah Fitzpatrick Color Rush Jersey , but we’re going to show up,” defensive end Yannick Ngakoue said. ”I just don’t like when people talk all week. You talk reckless and you lose.” The Jaguars voiced their displeasure with being overlooked by the Steelers last week and were really vocal after the victory at Heinz Field. Players yelled, ”Where’s Mike Mitchell at now” as they came off the field. ”I feel like they took us lightly. I don’t know why because we whooped them the first time,” Ngakoue said. ”You’ve got to respect all your opponents. That’s why we’re not big in trash-talking. We’re big in playing on Sunday. ”Real guys, real people don’t talk. We throw the first punch. We threw the first punch and we got the victory.” And now they have a matchup against the NFL’s most successful franchise over the past two decades. The Jaguars are 1-3 against New England in the postseason, with the lone victory coming after the 1998 season – before coach Bill Belichick and quarterback Tom Brady teamed up to take five Super Bowl titles. Jacksonville’s win came against coach Pete Carroll and backup quarterback Scott Zolak. The Jags are 0-7 against the Brady-Belichick combination. ”We’re not going to go out there like the Steelers the week before and talk about people in a bad way and give them bulletin board news,” Jackson said. ”We just continue to work and earn respect. … We just keep proving people wrong. (Blake Bortles) keeps proving people wrong, and we just keep going on it and pounding people. It’s just awesome to see and awesome to be a part of. ”We understand we have to do what we have to do or we’ll be watching the Super Bowl at home like everybody else.” — With perhaps the most frustrating road trip of their season in the rearview mirror, the Minnesota Twins return home Thursday looking to get back on track in the opener of a four-game series against the Baltimore Orioles at Target Field. Minnesota went 1-8 on their I-94 excursion that began by dropping two of three to the Chicago White Sox and ended with sweeps by the Chicago Cubs and Milwaukee Brewers. As a result, the Twins now sit 13 games under .500 and 12 games behind American League Central-leading Cleveland, holding down third place in the division. “I think we’re all frustrated,” manager Paul Molitor said after the Brewers hit three solo home runs in a 3-2 victory over the Twins at Miller Park on Wednesday. “You win one game and you’re on the road for 10 days, playing good teams. “We’re creating some of our own problems. At the same time, we’re not catching a lot of breaks. We’ll get home, looking forward to that. Have a nice homestand before the break. We’ll try to get these guys ready for a series with Baltimore tomorrow.” The Twins will turn to Aaron Slegers (0-0, 3.38 ERA) for his first start of the season in the hopes of turning things around. He has made just one other major league appearance this season Mike Hughes Color Rush Jersey , allowing two runs over 5 1/3 innings of relief May 30 at Kansas City. He has a 5.66 ERA in five career outings, including three starts, in the big leagues overall. Slegers has never faced Baltimore. Like the Twins, the Orioles come into the series looking to snap out of a slump. They have lost nine of their last 10 games, including two in a row to Philadelphia this week. Manager Buck Showalter still has confidence his team can turn things around. “There are some really good people in that locker room and I’d really like to see them get a return, but you can’t will it. You can’t just hope it,” said Showalter. “It’s got to be one pitch at a time. You can’t look at the big picture.” Andrew Cashner (2-8, 4.48) gets the start for Baltimore on Thursday, and he is looking for his first victory since May 21. He has a 3.21 ERA over his last five outings, four of which were quality starts. Keeping the ball in the park has been a big reason for that recent run of success. Cashner had allowed 11 home runs through his first nine starts but only three over his last seven — and none his last time out when he held the Los Angeles Angels to a run on four hits and a pair of walks while striking out four over six innings of work. “That’s what I try to do every time I take the mound, just keep the team in the game and grind it out, no matter if it’s pretty or ugly,” Cashner told the Baltimore Sun. “Just try to get through the seventh. Maybe next time I’ll get through the seventh. I thought I got stronger as I went along. The breaking stuff was better, the offspeed was better. Something to build on as we go and keep moving forward.” Cashner will be making his first career start at Target Field but is 0-2 with a 6.00 ERA in two previous starts against the Twins, who tagged him for five runs (four earned) over five innings on March 31 in Baltimore.
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    CLEVELAND — The Cleveland Indians have spent much of the first half of the season looking for a dependable No. 5 starter for their rotation to slot in behind Corey Kluber Jack Doyle Jersey , Trevor Bauer, Carlos Carrasco and Mike Clevinger. The Indians think they might now have found their No. 5, and he will be on the mound Friday night at Progressive Field against the Detroit Tigers. He’s 23-year-old right-hander Shane Bieber. A fourth-round pick by the Indians in the 2016 draft out of UC Santa Barbara, Bieber (1-0, 3.97 ERA) will be making his third start for the Indians, which he landed with his strong performance in the minor leagues this year. In a combined 12 starts at Double-A Akron and Triple-A Columbus, Bieber was 10-5 with a 1.29 ERA. In 76 innings, he struck out 72 and only walked six. Bieber is a premier strike thrower. In 2017, pitching at three minor league levels, he was 10-5 with a 2.86 ERA. In 173 innings, he had 162 strikeouts and only 10 walks. Bieber’s last major league start came June 17 Adam Vinatieri Jersey , a 4-1 win over Minnesota, in which he pitched 5 2/3 innings and gave up one run, 10 hits, with seven strikeouts and one walk. “He comes as advertised. He threw a lot of strikes, with one walk. He gave up a lot of hits, but because he didn’t walk anyone, and executed a lot of good pitches with men on base, he came away allowing just one run,” Indians manager Terry Francona said. Bieber has made two spot starts for the Indians this year, but after his last one, team officials decided to give Bieber a longer look in the rotation. “This is the first time he’s pitched for us and not gone back down (to the minors) after he pitched Marvin Harrison Jersey ,” Francona said. “I think settling into a routine at the big-league level will be good for him. To be able to watch guys like (Corey) Kluber during the week will really help. The people in our player development department rave about his temperament, his makeup and his work ethic.” The Indians come into Friday’s game riding a four-game winning streak in which they have outscored their opposition 28-6. That includes a three-game sweep of the White Sox in which they outscored Chicago 24-5. Bieber’s mound opponent Friday night will be right-hander Mike Fiers, who has pitched well against Cleveland during his career. In two starts against the Indians this year, Fiers is 1-0 with a 1.38 ERA, having allowed two runs and eight hits in 13 innings with 13 strikeouts and two walks. In six career starts against Cleveland, Fiers is 3-1 with a 2.04 ERA. Fiers’ last start was a 4-3 Tigers win over the Chicago White Sox on June 15. Fiers worked 5 1/3 innings, allowing three runs and eight hits with four strikeouts and one walk. He did not get the decision. Although the Tigers are three games below .500 at 36-39, they come into Friday’s game in second place in the American League Central, five games behind the division-leading Indians. Detroit had a five-game winning streak snapped by losing both games of a brief two-game series on Tuesday and Wednesday with Cincinnati. CHICAGO — Jon Lester may be having the best season of his career and the timing couldn’t have been better for the Chicago Cubs. While the starting rotation has experienced its share of issues and the Cubs have struggled to find consistency, Lester has been more than steady. Lester takes a 10-2 mark into his 17th start of the season Sunday when the Cubs attempt to finish off a three-game sweep of the Minnesta Twins at Wrigley Field. Lester has won six straight starts and allowed four runs in his five starts in June, which bodes well for a team that won its third straight game after Saturday’s 14-9 back-and-forth victory over the Twins. Lester threw 119 pitches — a sign that at age 34 he has plenty of good work left in him — two starts back. He had thrown 106 pitches in six innings when manager Joe Maddon elected to keep Lester on the mound. “At that point Le'Raven Clark Jersey , what’s 15 or 20 more pitches,” Lester told reporters, according to the Chicago Tribune. Said Maddon: “Jon gave what we needed.” Lester has provided consistency while fellow starters Kyle Hendricks, Jose Quintana and Tyler Chatwood have struggled and Yu Darvish has battled injury. Lester will attempt to keep rolling Sunday against the Twins, against whom he is 3-4 with a 3.66 ERA in 12 career starts. The Twins continued to struggle Saturday and lost for the seventh time in their last nine games. For the second straight day, Minnesota blew leads as the Cubs rallied from behind twice before scoring five runs in the seventh inning to snap a 9-9 tie. Minnesota’s bullpen allowed 10 runs and for the second straight day the Twins were unable to match the Cubs’ offense, which pounded out 20 hits on a day when the temperatures were in the 90s and the heat index registered 107 degrees. The Twins lost left fielder Eddie Rosario, catcher Bobby Wilson and outfielder Max Kepler during the game to heat illness. Cubs’ center fielder Albert Almora, Jr. also left with cramping because of the conditions. “When the conditions are like that, you do the best you can to prepare them with nutrition and hydration and all those things, but it overtook three of our guys today T.Y. Hilton Jersey ,” Twins manager Paul Molitor told reporters. “So it was just tough.” Twins right-hander Lance Lynn will take the mound against a team he is familiar with from his days with the St. Louis Cardinals. Lynn enters Sunday’s start with a 5-6 record and a 4.81 ERA. He allowed five runs (four earned) and struck out eight in his last start against the Chicago White Sox. Lynn is 6-6 with a 4.06 ERA in 19 games (18 starts) against the Cubs. Lynn will try to bounce back from an outing in which he had a lead but couldn’t pitch out of trouble in his final inning. “It’s frustrating, especially with the way things had been going all night. I had eight strikeouts in five and you’ve got 8-9 up, bases are loaded, even though it’s been kind of a funky inning, you want to have that chance,” Lynn told the team’s official website. “But with the way things had unfolded that inning, you get it. We’re trying to win the game.”
  4. Billy Hamilton is well aware of his struggles at the plate. The Cincinnati Reds centerfielder has tried to stay positive even as his average and his spot in the batting order dropped at an alarming rate Bryan Bulaga Jersey , trying to focus on being a more complete player until his swing returned. For the first time in a while – far too long for Hamilton’s liking – everything that makes him so effective was on full display Sunday against Pittsburgh. Hamilton went 3 for 4, stole two bases, scored three times and made a pair of vital defensive plays as the Reds held on for an 8-6 victory on Sunday. Hamilton started the day with a diving grab on the warning track in right-center to rob Pittsburgh’s Francisco Cervelli of extra bases in the first. He ended it by starting the sequence that cut down the potential game-tying run at the plate in the eighth then trotting home in the ninth after Scott Schebler’s two-run shot gave Cincinnati a little extra breathing room. ”Oh my goodness, that’s the best part (is the hitting),” Hamilton said after boosting his average .197. ”I ain’t worried about the catch. The catch is good, but I’m just worried about what I did at the plate. Especially for me, I’ve been struggling, man. Just to have one of these days, it gives you a bunch of confidence and clears your head a little bit.” Eugenio Suarez homered in the second straight game and Joey Votto celebrated his 1,500th major league contest by going 2 for 4 with two RBIs for the Reds. Schebler added three RBIs for Cincinnati, which won for just the second time in seven tries at PNC Park this season. Anthony DeSclafani (2-1) surrendered solo home runs to Colin Moran and Gregory Polanco but otherwise kept the Pirates in check to pick up his second victory since his return after missing the entire 2017 season with right elbow issues. DeSclafani struck out four against three hits and a strikeout in 5 2/3 innings and more than once caught himself marveling at Hamilton. ”It’s unbelievable what he can do out there Dave Robinson Jersey , man,” DeSclafani said. ”He saves pitchers all the time and he’s just fun to watch out there. It’s like video game stuff. It’s unbelievable.” Raisel Iglesias allowed an inherited runner to score in the eighth and an RBI-single to Austin Meadows in the ninth but managed to record the final four outs for his 10th save, receiving a bit of help in the process. Iglesias entered with two on and two outs in the eighth and immediately surrendered a double in the gap to Polanco. Corey Dickerson scored to pull the Pirates within one but Josh Bell was out at home trying to score all the way from first after Hamilton raced to the ball and quickly got it to shortstop Jose Peraza, who fired a strike to home. The call stood upon review after the Pirates challenged Cincinnati catcher Curt Casali may have illegally blocked the plate. ”I was just thinking head-first slide before he caught it so it was just too late for me to redirect or think anything else at that point,” Bell said, who added he thought Casali ”100 percent” gave him a lane to slide. SLUMP BUSTED? Like Hamilton, Polanco has been mired in an extended slump. The Pirates moved him to seventh in the lineup and there are signs he’s on the verge of snapping out of it after going 3 for 3, including his ninth home run of the season. ”Right now I am not thinking about anything, just seeing the ball and hit it,” Polanco said after boosting his average to .211. ”Because my swing the last couple days has been good. I’m not thinking now, I’m just swinging now. And when you’re not thinking your swing is good. So you just want to continue to keep seeing the pitches that you want to hit.” MUSGROVE MUZZLED Joe Musgrove (2-2) had been impressive in his first four starts for the Pirates after starting the year on the disabled list with right-shoulder problems but the Reds jumped on him the second time through the lineup. Cincinnati scored two runs in the fourth Ryan Jensen Color Rush Jersey , fifth and sixth and finished 4 for 9 with runners in scoring position after going 0 for 19 in the same situation over the first two games of the series, both losses. Musgrove was charged with six runs in 4 1/3 innings with a walk and six strikeouts as his ERA jumped from 2.16 to 3.68. ”That’s my first day game in a while,” Musgrove said after temperatures soared into the upper 80s. ”Just trying to get my body alert. It was hot out there. I felt drained.” UP NEXT Reds: off Monday then host Detroit in a brief two-game interleague series starting Tuesday when Sal Romano (3-7, 5.67 ERA) faces Matthew Boyd (4-4, 3.23). Pirates: Welcome Milwaukee to PNC Park for the first time this season when the Brewers come in for a three-game set starting Monday. Trevor Williams (5-4, 4.38 ERA) faces Jhoulys Chacin (6-1, 3.32) in the opener. — Kyle Freeland has a silhouette of a mountain range tattooed along his right arm. So, no, the Denver native doesn’t mind pitching in a little thin air. Freeland elevated his game once again at Coors Field and the Colorado Rockies scored the go-ahead run in the seventh on a throwing error by shortstop Brandon Crawford to rally for a 5-2 win over the San Francisco Giants on Monday night. Freeland (8-6) settled in to go seven strong innings after surrendering a homer to Gorkys Hernandez on the first pitch of the game. That mistake hardly weighed on him. ”There were a lot more pitches to be thrown,” said Freeland, who allowed three hits. ”You have to have faith in your offense they’ll come through for you.” The left-hander hardly feels intimidated by the hitter’s park. Freeland has allowed three or fewer runs in all but one of his seven starts at Coors Field this season. ”To me Jack Mewhort Jersey , it’s still the game of baseball. You have to make your pitches,” Freeland said of his approach at Coors. ”If you don’t make your pitches, there’s a strong chance they’re going to get whacked – hard.” Part of Freeland’s good groove of late has to do with the development of his changeup. He’s throwing it with confidence – and success. ”There is a poise factor that comes into play when you’re playing this game,” Rockies manager Bud Black said. ”He’s learning this at the highest level. … I love the day that Kyle pitches.” Scott Oberg threw the eighth and Wade Davis worked his way around a one-out double by Buster Posey in the ninth for his 24th save. He struck out Crawford to end the game. Madison Bumgarner (1-3) was cruising along until the seventh when he began to unravel. After allowing three straight singles, he was replaced by reliever Reyes Moronta, who walked Nolan Arenado and then allowed the tying run on a double play. Ian Desmond followed with a roller that Crawford gobbled up only to throw wide to first, allowing the tiebreaking run to score. ”Just didn’t throw it 100 percent. I gave it about an 80-percent throw,” Crawford explained. ”One-hopper, I had time.” Pinch-hitter Tom Murphy added an insurance run in the eighth, with Charlie Blackmon bringing in another on a sacrifice fly. Arenado finished 2 for 3 with two walks. Bumgarner ran his streak to 22 scoreless innings before it came to a halt in the seventh when he was charged with three runs, two earned. Before Monday Pat McAfee Jersey , the left-hander hadn’t allowed a run since June 16 in Los Angeles against the Dodgers. ”I don’t care about the streak. I’m just trying to win,” Bumgarner said. ”That’s a tough loss. Everything was going our way early on and didn’t go our way late. That’s all there is to it.” TRAINER’S ROOM Giants: RHP Johnny Cueto (elbow) was schedule to throw a bullpen session Monday in Sacramento, while RHP Jeff Samardzija (shoulder) was slated to make a rehab start for Triple-A Sacramento. ”It’s a fairly big day in Sacramento,” manager Bruce Bochy cracked. ”Tomorrow, we’ll have a plan.” Rockies: RHP Bryan Shaw (right calf strain) had a bullpen session Monday and ”threw the ball well,” Black said. Shaw will throw a simulated game Wednesday and may soon go out on a rehab assignment. … RHP Chad Bettis wore white tape on his middle finger after developing a hot spot during Sunday’s start. Bettis was pulled after three innings. ”We’re concerned about him for sure,” Black said. GREAT GRABS Austin Slater played a big role in keeping the Rockies off the scoreboard early by making a sliding catch in left field to end the third with the bases loaded. Slater also had a diving catch in the second. UP NEXT Giants: RHP Chris Stratton (8-5, 4.45 ERA) faces the Rockies on Tuesday for a second time in less than a week. He allowed five runs over four innings last Thursday. Rockies: RHP Antonio Senzatela (2-1, 6.23) will be recalled from Triple-A Albuquerque and make his first start of the season Tuesday. He takes the place of opening day starter Jon Gray, who was optioned to Triple-A over the weekend. —
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    Patriots quarterback Tom Brady missed practice with a right hand injury a day after being limited by the same issue as New England prepared for its AFC championship game matchup with Jacksonville. Brady was present and wore a glove on the injured hand during the stretching portion of practice open to reporters. But he was listed as a non-participant on the injury report. He usually only wears a glove on his non-throwing hand. His scheduled news conference was also postponed until Friday. Brady appeared on the Patriots’ weekly injury report several times during the latter half of the regular season with both an Achilles tendon and left shoulder injury. But the 40-year-old has never missed a playoff start during his 18-year career. He hasn’t missed any start because of an injury since he sat out the final 15 games of the 2008 season with a knee injury. GYMNASTICS LANSING Frank Ragnow Color Rush Jersey , Mich. (AP) – U.S. Olympian McKayla Maroney said being sexually assaulted by a Michigan sports doctor who molested her and other gymnasts scarred her mind in ways that may never heal. Dr. Larry Nassar won’t be sentenced until next week to accommodate the many victims who want to speak. Since Tuesday, Judge Rosemarie Aquilina has listened to more than 60 who were molested after seeking his help for injuries, including a statement from Maroney that was read by a prosecutor. ”Dr. Nassar was not a doctor,” said the 2012 Olympic gold and silver medalist. ”He left scars on my psyche that may never go away.” USA Gymnastics in 2016 reached a financial settlement with Maroney that barred her from making disparaging remarks. But the organization this week said it would not seek any money for her ”brave statements.” As the hearing was happening, USA Gymnastics announced that it was ending its long relationship with the Karolyi Ranch, the Huntsville, Texas, home of former national team coordinator Martha Karolyi and her husband, Bela. The announcement came three days after Olympic champion Simone Biles expressed dismay at having to attend camps there, where she says Nassar sexually abused her. BASEBALL NEW YORK (AP) – The players’ association rejected Major League Baseball’s proposal to institute 20-second pitch clocks and limits on mound visits, a move that dares management to unilaterally impose the changes designed to speed pace of games. Union head Tony Clark and deputy general counsel Matt Nussbaum informed MLB of the decision during a telephone call to deputy commissioner Dan Halem, a person familiar with the decision told The Associated Press. The person spoke on condition of anonymity because no statements were authorized. Management has the right to implement the rules changes it proposed last year. Under baseball’s labor contract, management can change on-field rules on its own with one season of advance notice. MLB does not intend to make any decision before its next owners’ meetings, scheduled for Jan. 30 to Feb. 1 in Beverly Hills, California. Spring training games start Feb. 23 and the season opens March 29. COLLEGE FOOTBALL NEW ORLEANS (AP) – Oklahoma’s Baker Mayfield says one of his top priorities as he prepares for the NFL draft is to allay concerns about his character. ”People will have their guesses and their opinions on my character, but anyone that’s actually sat down and talked to me knows that I don’t have any character issues, any off-the-field issues Oren Burks Jersey ,” Mayfield said during a conference call after being selected the 2017 Manning Award winner. Mayfield, who passed for 4,627 yards and 43 touchdowns, is the first Sooner and first former walk-on to win the Manning Award, which is given to the nation’s top college quarterback. It is the only award to consider postseason performances in voting by a national media panel as well as Archie, Peyton and Eli Manning. Mayfield also won the Heisman Trophy this season. And after racking up prestigious accolades for his performances during live snaps, Mayfield said he’s eager to meet with NFL coaches and front-office personnel and explain why some of his antics after the whistle and his behavior off the field won’t be an issue going forward. AUTO RACING The original ”GoDaddy Girl” is back with sponsorship intact to push forward with her ”Danica Double.” Danica Patrick has secured the money needed to race in both the Daytona 500 and the Indianapolis 500. Now she just needs to find the rides to get her back on racing’s two biggest stages. GoDaddy reunited with Patrick on Thursday for the final two races of her career, even though she still has to close deals with teams to make it happen. She’s not worried about pulling it off, either. ”Power of positive thinking,” she told The Associated Press from Scottsdale, Arizona. Patrick announced in November she would end her driving career at Daytona and Indy, but still doesn’t have rides. Yet Patrick always figures a way to get what she wants. When talks ended with Chip Ganassi Racing about seats for both races, Patrick said, she called former GoDaddy founder Bob Parsons late last month and asked about a reunion. SOCCER The Washington Spirit selected midfielder Andi Sullivan out of Stanford with the first pick in the National Women’s Soccer League draft. Draft day also featured a high-profile three-team trade involving U.S. national team star Carli Lloyd. A person familiar with the deal said Sky Blue FC acquired Lloyd in a trade that sent Christen Press to the Houston Dash and Australian Sam Kerr to the Chicago Red Stars. The person s Standing in foul territory, Steven Matz stared at the ball he had just mishandled and started to give it an angry kick, then changed his mind and instead just picked it up. Matz and the New York Mets keep their cool Sunday, barely Josh Jones Jersey , overcoming three errors and escaping the NL East cellar after a one-day stay by beating the Miami Marlins 5-2. The Mets, who endured their worst June ever, won for only the second time in the past 12 games to reach the season’s halfway point at 33-48. ”We’re all disappointed with where we’re at,” Matz said. ”We had higher expectations. We’re just going to keep pushing.” Matz (4-5) did that in the series finale, when he pitched 5 1/3 innings and allowed only an unearned run. It scored on his error, and he worked around misplays by two teammates – an encouraging sign from a pitcher still learning not to let setbacks snowball. ”You still see him get a little flustered out there,” manager Mickey Callaway said. ”But he regroups and makes the next pitch. Today he won the game for us because he did that, because they easily could have tacked on some runs there early. He held them right where he needed to hold them.” New York’s bullpen leads the majors in losses but limited Miami to one hit in the final 3 2/3 innings. Jeurys Familia completed the four-hitter with a perfect ninth for his 15th save. Asdrubal Cabrera hit his 14th homer off Dan Straily (3-4). Todd Frazier had two hits and scored three times, and Kevin Plawecki doubled home New York’s first run. Straily allowed three runs in seven innings, matching his longest outing of the year. Cameron Maybin hit his first homer for the Marlins, but they slipped back into last place in the division. ”We just didn’t do a whole lot with Matz,” manager Don Mattingly said. ”That’s probably the best I’ve seen him.” Matz loaded the bases with two out in the second by walking Straily, an .056 career hitter, but then struck out Starlin Castro to escape. Matz also reached behind his legs to snare Lewis Brinson’s grounder and retire him in the fourth. But the left-hander failed to come up with Straily’s safety squeeze bunt with two out in the inning, allowing Miguel Rojas to score from third. ”If I had taken my time I would have had him, but I rushed it,” Matz said. MISCUES Callaway talked before the game about how the Mets needed to play better defense Bart Starr Jersey , but they didn’t. Second baseman Cabrera and third baseman Frazier misplayed grounders for errors. Miami misplays in the eighth led to the Mets’ final two runs. Center fielder Brinson failed to catch Frazier’s drive after a long sprint, and the play was ruled an RBI double. ”He probably should have caught that,” Mattingly said. ”I know they gave him a hit there, but if you ask him he gets to that ball and catches that pretty much all the time.” Frazier then came home on a wild pickoff throw by catcher J.T. Realmuto. UNEXPECTED CONTRIBUTION Matz was 2 for 26 this year before he hit a two-out single in the fourth for his first RBI of the season. ”I was in a slump,” he said, ”but I’m out of it now.” NIMMO SLUMP The Mets’ Brandon Nimmo, hit by a pitch on his right hand a week ago, went 0 for 5 and is in a 1-for-19 slump. ”I’m super late. My bat speed is not there,” he said. ”But my hand feels fine.” TRAINER’S ROOM Mets: INF Dominic Smith, who had a cortisone shot for his sore right wrist, pinch-hit in the eighth and flied out. … OF Jay Bruce (hip) is expected to begin taking batting practice in the next few days. UP NEXT Mets: After an off day, RHP Zack Wheeler (2-6, 4.47) is scheduled to start Tuesday at Toronto. Marlins: LHP Wei-Yin Chen (2-5, 6.14) is scheduled to start Monday against Tampa Bay to begin a three-game series. —
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    Matt Harvey is starting to discover his old winning form in his new home with the Cincinnati Reds. Harvey pitched six-hit ball into the seventh inning Andrew Luck Jersey , earning back-to-back wins for the first time this season and leading Cincinnati to a 5-3 victory over the Atlanta Braves on Tuesday night. ”A start like today where you’re facing a good lineup, and you don’t have your best stuff, and you grind through it, it’s a step in the right direction,” Harvey said. Jesse Winker had three hits and two RBIs for last-place Cincinnati, which has won eight of nine. Scooter Gennett had two hits, including a run-scoring single in the ninth, and scored three times. Harvey (3-5) allowed one run in 6 2/3 innings in his longest start since lasting seven innings with the New York Mets on April 21, 2017, against Washington. ”I was cruising,” Harvey said. Harvey pitched out of trouble in the fourth when he allowed Tyler Flowers‘ run-scoring double before stranding two baserunners. ”The more he goes out there Youth Justin Reid Jersey , the more comfortable I think he gets,” Gennett said. ”He’s able to command his pitches better and better … you can see that confidence going up. I’m just really happy he’s got an opportunity over here to get back to his normal self and it looks like he’s doing that.” It was Harvey’s ninth start with the Reds after he was acquired in a trade with the Mets on May 8. He allowed two runs in a 6-2 win over the Cubs on Thursday. Braves manager Brian Snitker said ”everything was crisp” in Harvey’s pitch selection. ”His breaking ball was really good tonight,” Snitker said. ”His fastball, his whole game, the whole thing was a lot better than the last time I saw him.” The last time Harvey won consecutive starts was May 23 and May 28, 2017, for the Mets against the Padres and Pirates. The Reds led 4-1 before Atlanta scored two runs in the eighth. Ender Inciarte reached on a single that bounced off Amir Garrett’s left leg, knocking him to the ground and out of the game. Ozzie Albies doubled before Freddie Freeman and Nick Markakis produced run-scoring groundouts. Raisel Iglesias recorded the final out in the eighth on Johan Camargo’s fly ball to right field with runners on first and second, and then pitched the ninth for his 14th save. Anibal Sanchez (3-2) left with two outs in the fifth inning due to cramping in his right calf, but he is expected to make his next start. He allowed two runs and five hits in 4 2/3 innings. TRAINER’S ROOM Reds: X-rays on Garrett’s left leg were negative. Garrett tried to chase the deflection before falling to the ground in pain. ”At the time when it hit me, it hurt me pretty bad T.J. Green Jersey , I’m not going to lie,” Garrett said, adding ”my leg gave out.” He said he hopes to return ”in a day or two.” Braves: RHP Arodys Vizcaino (right shoulder inflammation) has felt good playing catch and is expected to throw on the mound when the team begins a weekend series in St. Louis on Friday. If all goes well, Vizcaino could come off the 10-day DL on Sunday. SHORT VISIT Right-hander Lucas Sims was sent back to Triple-A Gwinnett only three days after his promotion. Matt Wisler was recalled from Gwinnett and allowed one run in 2 1/3 innings after replacing Sanchez in the fifth. NEW ROLE Reds left-hander Brandon Finnegan is being moved to a relief role at Triple-A Louisville. ”We’ve just got to get him in a role where he can experience some success again,” president of baseball operations Dick Williams said. TRAE’S PITCHING FORM Atlanta Hawks first-round draft pick Trae Young threw out the first pitch . Young is best known for his 3-point shooting on the court, and he lofted a slow pitch that was caught in the left-handed batter’s box. UP NEXT Reds: RHP Luis Castillo (5-8, 5.70 ERA) will start in Wednesday’s finale of the three-game series. He allowed two runs in four innings in his only preview start against the Braves, an 8-1 loss on Aug. 20, 2017. Braves: LHP Sean Newcomb (8-2, 2.59 ERA) is 1-0 with a 3.27 ERA in two career starts against the Reds. — A look at what’s happening around the majors today: PACKING A PUNCH Odubel Herrera tries to homer in his fifth straight game when the Phillies begin a three-game series at Washington. ”What he’s doing is special,” Philadelphia manager Gabe Kapler said. ”It’s elite.” Herrera is batting .419 (13 for 31) with two doubles Ryan Miller Jersey , five homers and eight RBIs in the last seven games. Seven of his 12 homers have given the Phillies a lead. ”He’s a different breed,” pitcher Jake Arrieta said. ”When he gets hot, he’s fun to watch.” ONE-DIMENSIONAL PLAYER A sprained right index finger is expected to keep Angels star Mike Trout from playing the outfield during a four-game series against Toronto. Trout, who has reached base in 31 of 47 plate appearances over his last nine games, was the designated hitter Thursday night during an 8-5 victory over the Blue Jays. The two-time MVP went 0 for 2 with three walks in his 1,000th career game, ending his hitting streak at eight games. Los Angeles manager Mike Scioscia said the injury isn’t serious and it won’t hinder Trout’s ability to grip or swing the bat. BASHING THE BUCS Jon Jay and the Diamondbacks look to keep feasting on Pirates pitching when the teams square off in Pittsburgh again. Arizona has scored 35 runs in going 3-1 against the Pirates this season. Jay doubled in each of the first two innings Thursday night, when the Diamondbacks cruised to a 9-3 victory. The center fielder is hitting .340 in 13 games since being acquired from Kansas City in a June 6 trade. Ivan Nova (4-5, 4.42 ERA) will try to slow down Arizona – the right-hander has won both starts with a 1.54 ERA since being activated from the disabled list June 10. He missed two weeks with a sprained right ring finger. Patrick Corbin (6-5, 3.48) gets the ball for the Diamondbacks. The lefty is 1-2 with a 5.90 ERA in five career starts against the Pirates. ICHI-WHO? Keep an eye on the Mariners‘ dugout at Fenway Park for a mysterious, mustachioed visitor when Seattle opens a series in Boston. Associated Press photographer Bill Kostround spotted Ichiro Suzuki hiding on Seattle’s bench Thursday at Yankee Stadium wearing a fake mustache Authentic Sam Darnold Jersey , sunglasses and a hoodie. Officially, Suzuki isn’t allowed to be in the dugout during games under Major League Baseball rules after moving to the team’s front office in early May. But the 44-year-old outfielder channeled former Mets manager Bobby Valentine to sneak his way onto the bench – Valentine donned a fake mustache and sunglasses and returned to the dugout after being ejected from a game in 1999. ”He was perfect. I never would have known it was him,” Valentine texted to the AP. DOUBLE DIP The Oakland Athletics and Chicago White Sox are set to play a single-admission doubleheader after Thursday night’s scheduled game in the Windy City was postponed because of rain. It was the 40th postponement in the majors this season, already one more than all of last year. James Shields (2-8, 4.63 ERA) and Lucas Giolito (4-7, 7.19) will start for Chicago, which has lost seven straight to match a season high and is a season-low 25 games under .500. Oakland will send Sean Manaea (6-6, 3.56) and Chris Bassitt (0-2, 2.45) to the mound. —
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    SAN FRANCISCO — Johnny Cueto returns from a two-month stint on the disabled list to open a 10-game homestand when the San Francisco Giants host the St. Louis Cardinals in the opener of a four-game series Thursday night. The Giants completed a six-game trip with a thud Wednesday Saints Cheap Jerseys , dropping a third straight game at Colorado to cancel out an impressive three-game sweep at Arizona. San Francisco will have to hope a return home rejuvenates the bats that produced 41 runs during a recent 7-3 homestand. The Giants were held to three runs at Colorado, their lowest total ever in a three-game series at Coors Field by a full four runs. Cueto surely has the potential to turn the Giants’ pitching fortunes back in a positive direction. Before being sidelined by a sprained right elbow, he went 3-0 with a 0.84 ERA in five starts in March and April. After giving up no runs in two injury-rehab starts at Triple-A Sacramento, he was deemed healthy enough to return to the Giants’ rotation. “When you’ve got one of your big guys ready to go, you pitch him,” Giants manager Bruce Bochy announced this week. “He passed all the tests. He checked every box off. He’s thrown the ball well — no runs. His bullpen (Monday) went well, he’s practiced bunts, he’s set to go.” Cueto will be making his 24th career start against the Cardinals Mikkel Boedker Jersey , against whom he has gone 7-8 with a 3.74 ERA. He has never lost to St. Louis since joining the Giants in 2016, going 2-0 with a 1.77 ERA in three starts. The 32-year-old has had more than his fair share of success against some of the Cardinals’ top guns: Matt Carpenter (.217), Marcell Ozuna (.200) and Dexter Fowler (.158). Cueto will face a Cardinals team that will be riding the momentum of a late explosion that produced an 8-4 win at Arizona on Wednesday night. Before that win, St. Louis had lost five of its last six games, having totaled 19 runs in those games. The Cardinals will send out 24-year-old right-hander Luke Weaver (4-7, 5.16) to face Cueto. The third-year major-leaguer has struggled in his last nine starts, going 1-5, and is coming off his worst outing of the season when he allowed eight runs in 4 2/3 innings in an 11-4 home loss to Atlanta on Saturday. Weaver has pitched well against the Giants in his career Tim Heed Jersey , going 1-1 with a 1.86 ERA in two starts, both of which were in San Francisco. Interestingly, Weaver has allowed just one home run to a current member of the Giants, and that happens to be Madison Bumgarner, who is scheduled to pitch Sunday’s series finale against Jack Flaherty. The Giants also expect to get Jeff Samardzija back from the disabled list during the series. He is slated to return from shoulder and pectoral soreness to start Saturday. The Cardinals (44-41) and Giants (45-43) will open the series with nearly identical records. Both would be on the outside looking in had the playoffs begun Thursday. The Panthers say two-time All-Pro center Ryan Kalil plans to retire after the 2018 season when his contract expires. Panthers spokesman Steven Drummond confirmed the news on Tuesday. Kalil becomes the second long-time Panthers player to announce he is retiring after next season. Outside linebacker Thomas Davis told NFL.com earlier this month the 2018 season will be his last. Kalil, who turns 33 in March, was plagued by neck and shoulder injuries the last two seasons that limited him to 14 games. He had hoped to play more after the Panthers signed his younger brother Matt Kalil to play left tackle last offseason. Kalil has started 129 games during his 11 seasons with the Panthers and been to five Pro Bowls. He was named All-Pro in 2013 and 2015. —
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    JACKSONVILLE Taylor Decker Jersey , Fla. — The Jacksonville Jaguars don’t have near the playoff experience as the Pittsburgh Steelers. Jacksonville, though, has winning experience at Heinz Field. The champions of the AFC South (Jaguars) and AFC North (Steelers) will meet Sunday in the divisional round with the winner advancing to the AFC Championship Game against Tennessee or New England on Jan. 21. Jacksonville trounced Pittsburgh 30-9 on Oct. 8 at Heinz Field, forcing Steelers two-time Super Bowl winning quarterback Ben Roethlisberger into a career-worst five interceptions. The Steelers (13-3) went on to win 10 of their last 11 games to secure the AFC’s second seed and first-round bye. “We’ve evolved since then,” Pittsburgh coach Mike Tomlin said. “They have evolved a lot since then. (The first game) is a good physical reference in terms of the matchups. … I am sure that they are as different as we are since the last time we’ve seen them.” The Jaguars are hoping that the evolution has been minimal, especially the passing game. Roethlisberger said last week he was hoping the Steelers would get to play the Jaguars. Jacksonville All-Pro cornerback Jalen Ramsey helped grant his wish with his interception in the final seconds to seal Jacksonville’s 10-3 victory over Buffalo in the wild-card round Sunday at EverBank Field. The win was Jacksonville’s first in the playoffs since the 2007 season, its last appearance. The Jaguars (11-6) returned two Roethlisberger interceptions for touchdowns in the first meeting. The 35-year-old Roethlisberger wondered “if he still has it” after the loss when meeting with reporters. Ramsey said with the Bills game behind them, Big Ben’s comments about wanting a rematch have their attention. “I’m sure it will be brought up a couple times this week,” Ramsey said. “I would want to play us again too. He threw five picks and was contemplating retirement saying whether he had it or not after playing us. They had a good season after our game. But, sometimes you have to be careful what you ask for. We’ll see Big Ben and the Steelers on Sunday. We’ll see what happens then.” Ramsey intercepted a pass in the Pittsburgh win and deflected four passes. One breakup resulted in strong safety Barry Church intercepting a pass and returning it 51 yards for a touchdown. Roethlisberger was quick to praise the Jaguars’ defense this week. “This is one of the best defenses I’ve ever played against,” Roethlisberger said. The Steelers finished the season ranked third in the NFL in passing yardage, with the Jaguars first in pass defense. “They play to our strengths,” Ramsey said. “They think that passing is their strength. Defending the pass is our strength. Any team that tries to pass the ball on us 40 times hasn’t had success on us and I don’t think will have success on us. We have to grind this week though. They’re a good team coming off the bye. We’re going to have to have a great game plan and execute.” Ramsey will be in the headlining matchup Sunday as he goes up against Steelers All-Pro receiver Antonio Brown, who caught 10 passes for 157 yards on 19 targets in the first meeting. Brown injured his calf on Dec. 17, but is expected to play Sunday. The eighth-year veteran led the NFL in receiving yards this season with 1,533 (89 more than No. 2 Julio Jones), despite missing the final two games of the season. Pittsburgh will also try to lean more on All-Pro running back Le’Veon Bell Golden Tate III Jersey , who was held to 93 total yards in the first meeting. “He’s not one-dimensional,” Jaguars coach Doug Marrone said. “It’s not like this guy is going to take the ball and run downhill and run you over every single time he takes it. He can do that. He can also get the ball outside. He has excellent patience. He has a really good understanding of the blocking scheme. He’s a natural catcher.” The big question is how much will Pittsburgh really need to score? Jacksonville’s offense has been sluggish lately, scoring 20 total points in its last two outings combined. Jaguars quarterback Blake Bortles wasn’t effective in the first meeting. He completed 8-of-14 passes for 95 yards with no touchdowns and an interception for a 48.2 passer rating. The Jaguars’ top-ranked run offense had one of its best days of the season, generating 231 yards. Rookie running back Leonard Fournette carried 28 times for 181 yards and two touchdowns, including a game-clinching 90-yard score. “Hopefully, we can throw less,” Bortles said. “That would be awesome. Leonard goes off again and those guys up front play as well as they did last time, we can run the ball up there and not have to throw at all. It was something that happened last time, but you never know.” Lindsey Vonn edged Sofia Goggia in a foretaste of the Pyeongchang Olympic downhill on Saturday, raising her career total to 80 World Cup victories. The American standout beat Goggia by two hundredths of a second as their ongoing rivalry in Alpine skiing’s fastest discipline continued. ”It’s a big number,” Vonn said of her 80 wins, just six short of the all-time record set by Swedish great Ingemar Stenmark in the 1980s. ”I remember when I got my 50th here, I never thought I would even get close to Annemarie Moser-Proell’s record (of 62 wins) and now I am getting close to Stenmark’s. It’s incredible,” she said. ”Also the timing of this win, coming into the Olympics, I really feel strong mentally and physically.” Vonn skied a solid run but didn’t seem to go to the limits as she trailed Italian rival Goggia by 0.08 at the last split time. However, Vonn overcame the deficit in the final section. ”I definitely skied aggressively Teez Tabor Jersey , don’t get me wrong, but I didn’t leave all the cards on the table,” Vonn said. ”I hold those extra aces for the Olympics.” It was Vonn’s second straight downhill win after Cortina, Italy, two weeks ago. She and Goggia are the only racers with more than one downhill victory this season. Cornelia Huetter of Austria was 0.13 behind in third, and Vonn’s teammate, Breezy Johnson, finished fourth for her career-best result. Earlier, Johnson and Vonn posted the fastest times in a mandatory training session two hours before the race, after training was canceled on the previous two days. Vonn’s joy was tempered, however, by a crash that ruled her teammate Jacqueline Wiles out of the Olympics with a knee injury. Shortly after completing her run and taking the lead in the race, Vonn saw on a large video screen in the finish area how Wiles lost balance after skiing off the course, fell and went into the safety netting. Wiles had to be transported off the hill by helicopter. Wiles was set to compete in her second Olympics. She had her second career podium by placing third in the race that Vonn won in Cortina two weeks ago. Also, Laurenne Ross, who’s working her way back after a severe knee injury, crashed hard but she stood up and eventually skied down. ”It was really hard to actually be happy and excited and celebrate because Jackie is in the hospital Christian Jones Jersey ,” said Vonn about Wiles, who has been financially supported by Vonn’s foundation. ”It’s a really rough day for the whole team,” Vonn said. ”I am happy that Laurenne wasn’t hurt. She will be really sore tomorrow but at least her knee is OK.” Another downhill on the Kandahar course is scheduled for Sunday, the last World Cup race before the Olympics, and Vonn was expecting another close duel with Goggia. The Italian edged Vonn in both speed races that were held as test events on the Olympic hill in South Korea last year. ”She is always risking everything, she’s the person that I have to beat,” said the American, who is chasing another Olympic downhill medal to add to the gold she won in Vancouver 2010. ”She is a personality that is really needed on the World Cup. We are playing a little game with each other: Who has the hundredths, you know. It makes it more exciting for us and also for the spectators.” Goggia was smiling and hugged Vonn afterward. ”From the start gate to the red finish line, it’s a battle. But after, we are friends,” Goggia said. ”This is the rivalry that I like. It’s really fun and challenging for me.” The Italian’s daredevil style of racing has sometimes been seen as similar to Bode Miller’s approach, but Goggia laughs off any comparisons with him. ”It would be a great honor just to have one percent of Bode,” she said. ”I am far away from him. I am a show girl on the skis sometimes and that’s the only thing we have in common. He has a class that I will never reach.”
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    A look at what’s happening around the majors today: HOT HOUSTON The Astros aim for their 12th straight victory Authentic Josh Manson Jersey , which would tie for the longest winning streak in franchise history set in 1999 and duplicated in 2004. Fresh off a 10-0 road trip to Texas, Oakland and Kansas City in which they outscored opponents 74-35, the World Series champions return to Minute Maid Park to take on Tampa Bay. Houston starter Gerrit Cole (8-1, 2.40 ERA) leads the AL with 130 strikeouts; the Rays will start a reliever for the third straight game, with Ryne Stanek opening up. DOUBLING UP The New York Yankees and Washington meet for a doubleheader – sort of – at Nationals Park. The teams were tied at 2 in the sixth inning on May 15 when their game was stopped because of rain, and they were postponed the next night. So the Yanks and Nats will pick up in the sixth, with both clubs expected to start out with relievers. Sonny Gray will start Game 2 for the New York against rookie Erick Fedde. TRY AGAIN Bartolo Colon goes for his 244th career win, which would break a tie with Hall of Famer Juan Marichal for most by a pitcher born in the Dominican Republic. The 45-year-old Colon gave up a season-high eight runs in his last outing for Texas, tagged by the Dodgers. Colon has won one of his past five starts going into this game at Kansas City. Ian Kennedy has won just one of his last 27 home starts for the Royals. OH BABY Giants shortstop Brandon Crawford will go on paternity leave for the birth of his fourth child and could miss as many as three games. San Francisco returns home from a 10-day road trip to face the Miami Marlins. Over five seasons as ace of the Pittsburgh Pirates, Gerrit Cole threw one of the game’s hardest, heaviest fastballs, and he threw it often. The pitch helped him make millions of dollars. It put him in contention for major awards. Hitters swung through it again and again, and Cole seemed content not to mess with a good thing. But when Cole was traded to the Houston Astros this offseason, a funny thing happened. He became more frugal with his fastball and ended up more overpowering than ever. Cole has joined some of the game’s best pitchers – including Cleveland’s Corey Kluber and the Dodgers’ Clayton Kershaw – in benefiting from a puzzling baseball paradox: In an era when pitchers are throwing harder than ever, they’re maximizing success by using fewer fastballs. Pitchers – even ones with blazing fastballs like Luis Severino and Chris Archer – are using more offspeed than ever recorded, and while many aces think the downturn is a trend Ondrej Kase Jersey , some believe baseball could be entering a new age dominated not by 100 mph heaters, but by a steady stream of breaking balls and changeups. So why is the hardest-throwing generation of pitchers ever going the way of the junk-baller? Depends who you ask, but one culprit stands out to Cole, Kluber and Kershaw: baseball’s swing-changing batters. ”You can call it launch angle, or you can call it the upper cuts,” Cole said. ”There are a lot of swings that are dictating breaking balls.” Cole’s move away from a fastball-first approach is striking given the reputation of his hardest pitch. He topped out at 99 mph as an ace at UCLA, and his fastball was the headliner on a resume that earned him an $8 million signing bonus as the first overall draft pick in 2011 by Pittsburgh. Under the guidance of Pirates pitching coach Ray Searage, Cole pounded the bottom of the strike zone with that heater, and for years, it worked. He was an All-Star and finished fourth in NL Cy Young Award voting in 2015, and was considered among the game’s most overpowering starting pitchers. Then baseball’s flyball revolution took flight – a movement of hitters using upper-cut swings designed to crush exactly the kinds of sinking fastballs Cole was delivering. After never allowing more than 11 home runs in a season, Cole was tagged for 31 last year. So it was time to change things up. From 2013-17, Cole threw his fastball 65 percent of the time – well above the league average. But this year, he’s cut that fastball rate by about 10 points, replacing those heaters with sliders and curveballs. The new look is working. Cole is 8-1 with a 2.59 ERA through 15 starts and leads the American League with 138 strikeouts. ”I think you’re just continually trying to mess timing up, especially when guys are trying to slug Rickard Rakell Jersey ,” Cole said. ”When they’re trying to hit it out of the park every time, you have an easier time changing speeds.” Kluber and Kershaw have made similar adjustments in the past couple years. Both Cy Young winners rank among the league leaders in fewest fastballs thrown this season. ”Guys are geared up to swing for a fastball,” Kluber said. ”I guess it’s almost rare now to see somebody actually, like, go the other way with the breaking ball.” Kluber has set a career low with a fastball rate of 41.8 percent this season. Same for Kershaw, who has dropped from a 72-percent fastball clip in 2010 all the way to 42.8 percent in an injury-hampered 2018. ”The hitters tell you what you need to do,” Kershaw said. ”And for me, I guess it’s been throwing a lot more breaking balls.” Cole, Kluber and Kershaw suspect the tide will turn back, perhaps soon, once hitters recalibrate to the number of four-seam fastballs pitchers are throwing up in the strike zone. But Trevor Bauer, Kluber’s analytically-minded teammate in Cleveland, thinks the offspeed uptick is only going to spread. Two years ago, Bauer and Indians closer Cody Allen watched as 6-foot-8 Yankees fireballer Dellin Betances carved up Cleveland’s hitters with a fastball that averaged 98 mph. Allen – no slouch himself with a fastball around 94 mph – told Bauer that if he could throw hard like Betances, he wouldn’t even bother with a breaking ball. ”No,” Bauer recalled telling Allen. ”He should never throw a fastball.” Bauer’s theory is that the threat of a 100 mph fastball might be more dangerous to hitters than the fastballs themselves. ”As guys throw harder Marquis Haynes Jersey , guys have less and less time to hit that offering,” Bauer said. ”So they have to speed up in order to catch up to it, which, that makes the breaking ball more effective.” Hitters are left picking between two nasty poisons – risk being behind on triple-digit fastballs, or jeopardize taking ugly swings on breaking pitches as they dart out of the strike zone. Veteran slugger Todd Frazier was with the Yankees last year when New York’s hard-throwing bullpen led by Betances, Aroldis Chapman and Chad Green overpowered hitters while also posting the lowest fastball rate in the majors. ”I have to set my feet for 98 mph, and understand I might get 84-88 mph slider,” said Frazier, now with the New York Mets. ”It makes it tougher on you.” And yet, Frazier and his fellow hitters aren’t close to jumping off their fastball-first approach. ”The baseline of hitting is the fastball,” Mets teammate Jay Bruce said. ”You have to stay on the fastball. For me personally, that’s what my timing of th
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    James Harrison and Malcolm Butler can probably trade notes when it comes to Super Bowl-changing defensive plays. The two New England Patriots teammates are the authors of perhaps the two most memorable from the first 51 Super Bowls. One a game-sealing interception and the other a 100-yard return that provided a 14-point swing. ”They’re both all-time great plays Authentic Saquon Barkley Jersey ,” said NFL Network analyst Willie McGinest, who played in four Super Bowls with the Patriots. ”I don’t want to rank them against each other. They both were game-changers.” Butler’s interception at the goal line that turned what looked like a Seattle repeat title into the fourth championship for Tom Brady and the Patriots three years ago might be the most impactful play of any kind in the Super Bowl when it comes to determining the champion. ”It feels like yesterday, but life goes that fast,” Butler said. Butler was an unlikely hero that game. He played just one-sixth of New England’s defensive snaps all season and was on the field for just 17 defensive plays before being put in on the goal line at the end of the game. He then stepped in front of Ricardo Lockette on a slant pattern and intercepted Russell Wilson’s pass to stake his place in Super Bowl history. ”Just be ready. Just be ready,” he said of his attitude that day. ”I might not play, but I’m going to prepare like I’m going to play and I got the result.” Harrison’s impact was much less of a surprise considering he was the AP Defensive Player of the Year in 2008 when he helped lead the Steelers to the Super Bowl. Arizona appeared set to take the lead in the closing seconds of the first half when Harrison stepped in front of Anquan Boldin and intercepted a pass at the goal line before racing 100 yards for a touchdown on the final play of the half to put Pittsburgh up 17-7. While the Steelers still needed a last-minute TD pass from Ben Roethlisberger to Santonio Holmes to win 27-23, Harrison’s play was still one of the biggest in Super Bowl history, providing a potential 14-point swing. Here are some other memorable defensive plays in Super Bowl history: VON STRIP-SACK: Von Miller set the tone for the Super Bowl two years ago on Carolina’s second drive of the game. Miller sped past helpless right tackle Mike Remmers and ripped the ball away from league MVP Cam Newton on the sack. Malik Jackson pounced on the ball in the end zone to give Denver a 10-0 lead. Miller later iced the game with another strip-sack in the fourth quarter to earn Super Bowl MVP honors. PICK-SIX: Peyton Manning had the Colts driving for a potential tying touchdown late in the game played in 2010 against New Orleans when everything changed on one play. With Indianapolis facing a third-and-5 at the Saints 31, Manning looked for favorite target Reggie Wayne over the middle. Tracy Porter stepped in front of Wayne to intercept the pass and raced 74 yards for the title-sealing touchdown. GOAL-LINE STOP: Few Super Bowl endings have been as dramatic as the one between the St. Louis Rams and Tennessee Titans in the game played in 2000. The Titans rallied back from a 16-point deficit to tie the game only to have the Rams take the lead on the next play from scrimmage on a 73-yard pass from Kurt Warner to Isaac Bruce. Steve McNair took over with less than two minutes left and drove Tennessee down to the 10 with time for one more play. McNair found Kevin Dyson on a short slant and for an instant it looked as if he might be able to run it in the end zone, but Mike Jones wrapped him up for the tackle at the 1 , just short of a potential tying score. MOMENTUM-CHANGER: Having lost three straight Super Bowls, the Buffalo Bills took a 13-6 halftime lead against Dallas in trip four and started with the ball in the third quarter. But instead of adding to the lead, the Bills lost it when Leon Lett stripped Thurman Thomas of the ball and safety James Washington scooped it up and weaved his way to a 46-yard touchdown . Emmitt Smith added two TD runs to earn MVP honors as Dallas ran away for a 30-13 win, but it was Washington’s play that was most important. ROCKET SCREEN: Washington trailed the Raiders 14-3 late in the first half of the game played in 1984 when the Redskins took over at their 12 with 12 seconds to play. Rather than taking a knee Youth Billy Price Jersey , Washington coach Joe Gibbs called ”Rocket Screen,” a play that had led to a big gain late in the half in the regular season against the Raiders. Los Angeles was ready this time, putting backup linebacker Jack Squirek in place of starter Matt Millen just for this moment. Joe Theismann faked a pass to his right before floating a screen to Joe Washington to his left. Before the ball could reach Washington, Squirek grabbed it and walked for a 5-yard score that set the scene for a second-half blowout. — AP Sports Writer Kyle Hightower contributed to this report — Eric Hosmer’s first single barely stayed fair and never made it past third base. His second was a little crisper and gave the Padres a little cushion in the ninth inning. It also assured Clayton Richard’s career-best winning streak stayed intact. Hosmer reached base three times, Richard pitched three-hit ball over six innings for his fourth consecutive win and San Diego beat the San Francisco Giants 6-2 on Friday night. The Padres were clinging to a 3-2 lead in the ninth before scoring three times. Hosmer’s two-run single to left off Will Smith was the pivotal blow and came after the Giants intentionally walked Wil Myers. ”I don’t think he likes having the guy in front of him intentionally walked,” Padres manager Andy Green said. ”He’s got way too much pride for that to happen. It was a great at-bat. We needed those two insurance runs.” Hosmer’s hit in the ninth was in stark contrast to his infield single in the third off starter Chris Stratton. The ball bounced near the plate then rolled slowly down the line as third baseman Pablo Sandoval stood and watched, hoping it would go foul. It didn’t. ”I didn’t even know it had a chance of staying fair, honestly, so it was kind of a surprise for me,” Hosmer said. ”I’ll take the free knocks. I need them, that’s for sure.” Manuel Margot had two hits and two RBIs as the Padres snapped a five-game skid. Travis Jankowski and Cory Spangenberg added two hits apiece. Richard (7-6) was dominant in his third start against the Giants this season. He retired 17 straight during one stretch, allowed only two runners past second base and struck out four. The four consecutive wins mark a career high for the left-hander. ”We’ve struggled the last five days so it’s good to get back on the right track,” Richard said. ”That’s always a good thing, and to do it against the Giants here John Gibson Jersey , it’s a good win.” San Diego’s bullpen made Richard’s performance hold up, but it was dicey at times. Green used three relievers to get out of the seventh. Kirby Yates allowed a leadoff single in the eighth before setting down the next three. Brad Hand retired all three batters he faced in the ninth. Gorkys Hernandez doubled twice off Richard. ”We just couldn’t do much offensively,” Giants manager Bruce Bochy said. ”We hit a lot of ground balls off of Richard. That’s what he induces with that sinker and we just couldn’t get much going offensively.” San Diego scored the go-ahead run in the sixth on a throwing error by catcher Nick Hundley. Spangenberg slid into first base with an infield single after initially being called out. After Freddy Galvis singled Spangenberg to third, Hundley blocked a wild pitch by starting pitcher Chris Stratton but threw the ball into center field, allowing Spangenberg to score. ”We had him,” Bochy said. ”Nick recovered well. He just yanked the throw a little bit to the left.” Margot followed with an RBI single. Sandoval’s two-out single in the seventh off Craig Stammen trimmed San Diego’s lead to 3-2. TOO SLOW Stratton (8-5) allowed three runs and nine hits in six innings but was more upset at himself for not getting to first base on Spangenberg’s infield single in the sixth. Giants first baseman Buster Posey made a diving stop but Stratton was late to the bag. ”My thought was that it probably was going to go foul there, but Buster made a heck of a play there and you can’t be late,” Stratton said. TRAINER’S ROOM Padres: C Austin Hedges (elbow tendinitis) continues to make progress in his rehab start with Triple-A El Paso and could rejoin the team soon. The Chihuahuas are playing a series against San Francisco’s affiliate in Sacramento, about 80 minutes north AT&T Park. Giants: The team is undecided what the next step will be for Jeff Samardzija after the right-hander gave up four runs in four innings with Triple-A Sacramento on Thursday. Manager Bruce Bochy said it’s possible Samardzija will make at least one more rehab start before rejoining the big league club. UP NEXT RHP Jordan Lyles (2-4, 4.46 ERA) pitches for San Diego on Saturday in the third game of the series. It will be Lyles’ ninth start, his most since 2015. LHP Andrew Suarez (2-4, 4.70) goes for San Francisco. —
  11. Jon Gruden has never had a promising Authentic Da'Ron Payne Jersey , young quarterback like Derek Carr to develop in 11 seasons as an NFL head coach. Carr hasn’t had the opportunity to play for a coach like Gruden, an offensive mastermind known for his maniacal work ethic and attention to detail. The way those two fare together will determine whether Gruden’s return for a second stint as coach of the Oakland Raiders will end up as the resounding success owner Mark Davis hoped for while pining for a reunion the past six years. ”I had a chance to visit with Derek Carr this morning and I said, `Derek, this is an unbelievable opportunity and if you’ll just take advantage of the opportunity, there’s so many great things in store for you, not only professionally but personally,”’ said Rich Gannon, whose career took off after joining Gruden in Oakland in 1999. ”Jon’s excited to work with Derek and Derek’s already a good player but he’s got a chance to be a Hall of Famer and win multiple Super Bowls if he’ll just do the work.” Carr will be tested and challenged like he hasn’t in his first four seasons. Gruden is famous for arriving at work each day at 3:17 a.m., putting in long hours each week. He will also ride Carr hard if necessary in order to bring out the best in his game. ”I don’t care how hard Derek worked before, he’s going to have to change his work habits a little bit to fit in,” Gannon said. Gannon became a star when he joined up with Gruden after 12 seasons as a journeyman in Minnesota, Washington and Kansas City. He became a first-team All-Pro in his second season with Gruden and won the league MVP the year after Gruden was traded to Tampa Bay. Carr showed he was capable of being a top quarterback when he garnered MVP support in a breakthrough 2016 season. But he took a major step back this past year after signing a $125 million, five-year extension. He matched his career high with 13 interceptions and recorded his worst totals in yards, touchdown and passer rating since his rookie year in 2014. ”I think there is a huge ceiling in Derek Carr,” Gruden said. ”I think he has proven that. Up to us as a coaching staff to improve around him, get more consistent, and come up with an offense that really allows him to soar into another level.” Fixing Carr is just one of Gruden’s tasks. Getting receiver Amari Cooper back on track is nearly as important. After beginning his career with back-to-back 1,000-yard seasons, Cooper took a major step back in 2017. He was plagued by the drops that hurt him as a rookie and only topped the 100-yard mark twice all season while finishing with career lows with 48 catches for 680 yards. It was a puzzling drop-off for a receiver who entered the year considered one of the top in the game. Hall of Famer Tim Brown said he believes Cooper could be in for a 120-catch season if he listens to Gruden’s advice. ”Even for a guy like me, who was having a pretty good career, he was able to take me to another level, showing me how much better I could be,” Brown said. ”I thought I was doing pretty good. Sometimes you just have to turn your brain off and buy in. If you can do that great things can happen.” Even some of the greatest players in the game’s history credit Gruden for some of their success. Hall of Famer Jerry Rice arrived in Oakland in 2001 as the most accomplished receiver in NFL history but appeared to be on the decline after failing to reach 1,000 yards in each of his final two seasons in San Francisco. But he had a rebirth in Oakland under Gruden, catching 83 passes for 1 Authentic Derrius Guice Jersey ,139 yards at age 39. He followed that up with 92 catches for 1,211 yards the following season and compared Gruden to his former coach in San Francisco, Bill Walsh. ”Could be your best friend or your worst enemy, that’s going to keep you on your toes,” he said. ”Maybe that was something that the players, they were lacking this year. Sometimes you fall into listening to the talk but you need a coach that’s going to keep you focused. With Jon Gruden, he’s that type of coach.” While Gruden’s biggest impact is on offense, his leadership and intensity translate to the entire team. Hall of Famer Howie Long has seen just about everything. He played for 13 years, announced for more than two decades and has two sons in the NFL. So Long knows what players want in a coach. ”They want to be great and they want to be led,” he said. ”They want to believe in the guy in front of the room. I call it the Saran Wrap factor. Players see right through that in the front of the room if you’re not authentic, you’re not genuine, you’re not that way every day. … Jon has that.” — Aqib Talib is reuniting with Wade Phillips in Los Angeles after the Denver Broncos agreed to trade the star cornerback to the Rams, a person with knowledge of the deal told The Associated Press. The Rams will send Denver a mid-round pick, believed to be a fifth-rounder, in next month’s draft for the perennial Pro Bowl cornerback, said the person, who spoke off the record because the trade isn’t official until the start of the new league year Wednesday. ”Man, I’m so excited,” Talib told The Associated Press from Dallas on Thursday night. ”I can’t wait to play for Coach Sean McVay, go back with working with Wade, and playing with my young man, Marcus Peters. He’s going to bring that young energy back to me. ”I’m super excited to play with those guys. Aaron Donald is a good friend of mine, too, so I get to go from playing behind Von Miller to playing behind Aaron Donald. That’s not too shabby. I got another MVP in front of me.” The NFL Network first reported the agreement. The Broncos had been in talks with the Patriots, 49ers and Rams about Talib Authentic Justin Bethel Jersey , who signed a six-year, $57 million deal in Denver in 2014, part of a defensive makeover that carried the team to the Super Bowl title two years ago. In Los Angeles, Talib will reunite with Phillips, who was his defensive coordinator in Denver until last year, and will play alongside a fellow star defensive back in Peters, whom the Rams are acquiring from Kansas City . Talib had an eventful four seasons in Denver, both on and off the field. He missed the Broncos’ visit with former President Barack Obama to celebrate their Super Bowl 50 triumph after accidentally shooting himself in the leg during a night of partying only to come back to have an All-Pro season in 2016. He was suspended for one game for fighting Michael Crabtree last season. None of that is why the Broncos are moving on from Talib. They needed to clear both salary cap space and room for rising cornerback Bradley Roby, who’s getting a big pay raise from about $1 million in 2017 to $8.526 million this year in the final season of his rookie contract. On Thursday, the Broncos also picked up cornerback Chris Harris Jr.’s $1 million option, guaranteeing his 2018 salary of about $7.5 million. He’ll cost them $10.26 million against the cap in 2018. By trading Talib, who’s due $11 million this season and $8 million next year, the Broncos will have about $35 million in salary cap space to pursue free agents, including quarterback Kirk Cousins. Talib said Donald was the first Ram to reach out to him after word of the deal got out Thursday night. They share an agent in Todd France. Talib said he’ll miss playing with Harris, his college teammate at Kansas, and the rest of the Broncos, however. ”It’s a business, man, so them guys understand,” Talib said. ”Chris hit me up. We’re all talented corners and they couldn’t pay all of us. They got that quarterback situation they’ve got to fix.” Talib’s departure further breaks up the ”No Fly Zone ” secondary that saw its first departure last fall when the Broncos cut safety T.J. Ward so they could play second-year safety Justin Simmons more. Talib, who was one of the Broncos’ defensive captains last season, called his stay in Denver special. ”I’m going to miss it. It’s a one-of-a-kind group in that locker room,” Talib said. ”Von’s going to be out here in Dallas this weekend for the grand opening of my workout facility. So, I’ll get to hang out with him again. But I’m definitely going to miss it. A lot of good memories in that locker room.” —
  12. The NBA’s reigning Rookie of the Year has joined a two-time Super Bowl champion to rally support for clean water Authentic Carlton Davis Jersey , a cause dear to both University of Virginia alumni. Milwaukee Bucks player Malcolm Brogdon announced Thursday that he’ll be the first NBA ambassador for Philadelphia Eagles defensive end Chris Long’s Waterboys Initiative, which installs deep-borehole wells in east Africa. A University of Virginia release says Long reached his initial goal of building 32 wells, at $45,000 each, the same week the Eagles won the Super Bowl last month. At Virginia, Brogdon partnered with a nonprofit focused on affordable ceramic water filters in South Africa. The Hoos’ generosity extends beyond water: Long donated his entire 2017 season salary to charities, and Brogdon had the money budgeted for his Rookie of the Year campaign donated. Jon Lester won his fifth straight start, Javier Baez backed him with three hits and two runs Authentic Alex Cappa Jersey , 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 Authentic Jordan Whitehead Jersey , 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 Authentic Rashaan Evans Jersey , 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 Authentic Harold Landry Jersey , 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
  13. It’s the time of year when World Cup skiers get worn down with flu Authentic Mike McGlinchey Jersey , fever and general fatigue – and all of the protagonists in Tuesday’s giant slalom were affected by it in one way or another. Viktoria Rebensburg of Germany returned from two weeks in bed to claim her third win of the season while overall World Cup leader Mikaela Shiffrin cited fatigue as a factor after an uncharacteristic fall in the first run ”It’s Day 7 on snow in a row and Day 11 or 12 on snow with only one day off,” Shiffrin told The Associated Press. ”So it’s a lot. It’s definitely a point in the season where fatigue is starting to build up.” Sitting third after the opening leg, Rebensburg had the fastest second run to finish 0.03 seconds ahead of first-run leader Ragnhild Mowinckel of Norway amid perfect conditions at the Kronplatz resort. ”After this period when I was lying at home on my couch watching other girls ripping it wasn’t easy to stay patient,” Rebensburg said. ”But now I’m 100 percent healthy.” Mowinckel was 0.21 ahead of Rebensburg at the final checkpoint but lost speed through the final gates. Still, it was the Norwegian’s best career result and she celebrated as if she had won. Defending champion Federica Brignone of Italy finished third, 0.66 behind, despite a fever that kept her out of Sunday’s super-G in Cortina d’Ampezzo. ”In between runs I was almost asleep,” Brignone said. ”But I tried not to think I’ve been sick the last few days and lying in bed all day long. … I tried to give everything in front of my people.” Shiffrin lost control of her inside ski coming around a turn as she entered the toughest section of a slope named Erta, which translates as steep. With a gradient of 61 percent in that section, Shiffrin slid a long way down the course but immediately got up and was not injured. ”I got on my inside ski going over that breakover and it was the one turn that I knew like, `Have some direction, it gets really steep after this. It’s a short breakover. And you just want to make sure you’re on point on this turn,”’ Shiffrin said. ”And I was going into it really aggressive but fine. ”It happens,” Shiffrin added. ”One of the things I’ve been working on the most is putting the pressure on my outside ski so I don’t boot out like I did.” After missing a gate on Sunday in the Cortina super-G Authentic Dante Pettis Jersey , it marked the first time in more than six years that Shiffrin failed to finish two consecutive races. The last time came in back-to-back slaloms in Courchevel, France, and Flachau, Austria, in December 2011 – before the American registered her first World Cup podium. It was the 16th career World Cup win for Rebensburg, who also won the giant slalom at the 2010 Vancouver Olympics. Rebensburg’s other wins this season came in the season opener in Soelden, Austria, in October and then in Killington, Vermont, in November. Marta Bassino of Italy finished fourth and Sara Hector of Sweden was fifth. Shiffrin still holds a massive 843-point lead over Rebensburg in the overall standings. In the GS rankings, Rebensburg moved 37 points ahead of Shiffrin. ”That’s how it goes when you’re pushing the limits,” Shiffrin said. ”I’ve been exploring that mentality of pushing my limit. I like to step in the race course to know that my skiing is good enough that I could ski at 90 percent but it’s more fun when I’m really hammering. ”And with GS there’s a lot of really awesome competition,” Shiffrin added. ”When I watch these girls I know they’re not holding back.” Shiffrin had been undefeated this year in the technical disciplines of GS, slalom and parallel slalom with five straight wins. She has two more technical races in Lenzerheide Authentic Vita Vea Jersey , Switzerland, next weekend before she travels to South Korea for the Pyeonghchang Olympics. — This story has been corrected to show that Shiffrin has failed to finish two consecutive races before. — More AP Olympic coverage: After an anemic first couple months of the season, the Dodgers are powering balls out of the stadium at a near record rate. Max Muncy and Cody Bellinger each hit a solo home run, Joc Pederson added a two-run shot and Los Angeles defeated the Chicago Cubs 7-5 on Wednesday night. The Dodgers improved to 17-6 in June and have slugged a major league-leading 51 homers this month. That’s the second-most during any month in franchise history. With three days remaining, they have a chance to overtake last year’s team that set the record with 53 while the single-season record of 58 in a month is within reach, too. ”It just seems like they’re taking really good swings,” Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said. ”When there’s a mistake in the strike zone, we hit it hard.” The Dodgers hit 25 home runs in late March and April and 31 in May. The current surge is being generated by a variety of players. ”It’s scary facing us,” Bellinger said. ”We’re clicking right now.” After not homering in a 9-4 loss to the Cubs on Tuesday that snapped their four-game winning streak, the Dodgers got going early despite not having Matt Kemp in the lineup. The outfielder, who is hitting .311, served a one-game suspension after losing his appeal with Major League Baseball for a scuffle with Texas catcher Robinson Chirinos on June 13. Muncy homered over the center-field wall in the first for his ninth long ball this month and 16th of the season. The ball hit something beyond the wall and bounced back onto the field, grazing center fielder Albert Almora Jr. in the head. Later in the inning, Yasmani Grandal’s two-run double with two outs gave the Dodgers the lead for good Authentic Ronald Jones II Jersey , 3-2. Pederson followed in the second with his 10th homer of the month to make it 5-2. Enrique Hernandez extended the lead with an RBI single. Alex Wood (4-5) allowed three runs and seven hits in seven innings to earn his third straight win. The left-hander struck out six and walked none, retiring the final seven batters he faced. Kenley Jansen earned a four-out save, his 21st of the season. Chicago made it close after Wood exited. He was replaced in the eighth by Scott Alexander, who walked Jason Heyward and gave up a single to Javier Baez before Willson Contreras hit a two-run double to pull the Cubs to 6-5. Ben Zobrist grounded back to Alexander, putting the potential tying run on third, but Jansen came in and struck out Addison Russell to end the inning. ”The at-bats had great approaches,” Cubs manager Joe Maddon said. ”I thought we hit the ball all over the place. Javy hit it to right and right center. Same with Contreras. Good approaches. We played our butts off, we just didn’t get it.” Bellinger homered leading off the eighth against Randy Rosario, tying Muncy for the team lead with 16 homers and making it 7-5. Cubs starter Kyle Hendricks (5-8) gave up six runs and eight hits in 2 2/3 innings, failing to go at least five innings for the first time in 16 starts this season. The team has lost five of his last six starts. ”I’m just searching right now, it’s just bad,” Hendricks said. ”I don’t know mechanics and I’m trying to focus mentally and go pitch-to-pitch. Something is just off. I’ve had troubles in my career, but this is up there as one of the toughest.” Chicago took the lead in the first on a two-run homer by Contreras. In the fifth, Heyward reached on an infield single that Wood raced to pick up along the first base line. He flipped to Bellinger Authentic M.J. Stewart Jersey , and first base umpire Alan Porter signaled that Heyward was out. But the ball came loose and second baseman Logan Forsythe, backing up the play, fired to the plate. Ian Happ, who singled leading off, was called safe to leave the Cubs trailing 6-3. TRAINER’S ROOM Cubs: Chicago closer Brandon Morrow (lower back tightness) was activated off the DL. He had been sidelined since June 20 after experiencing back spasms while taking his pants off. … RHP Tyler Chatwood will be available soon. Chatwood has been on paternity leave after his wife gave birth last Sunday. Dodgers: RHP Walker Buehler (right rib microfracture) will throw three innings in a rehab start at Triple-A Oklahoma City on Thursday. If it goes well, he will have a bullpen session this weekend and could possibly return to the rotation next week. … INF-OF Chris Taylor (left hamstring) wasn’t in the lineup for the sixth straight day but pinch hit in the seventh and will start on Thursday. UP NEXT Cubs LHP Jose Quintana (6-6, 4.26 ERA) starts the series finale against LHP Clayton Kershaw (1-4, 2.94). Quintana is better on the road (3.22 ERA) than at home (6.00). Making his second start since coming off the disabled list, Kershaw is 5-3 in nine career starts against Chicago with a 2.64 ERA. —
  14. Kevin Durant became the 44th player in NBA history to score 20 Jaire Alexander Color Rush Jersey ,000 career points, finishing with 40 as the Golden State Warriors had their five-game winning streak snapped along with a 12-game unbeaten stretch in the Clippers rivalry with a 125-106 loss. Durant reached the milestone on a pull-up jumper from the left wing at the 1:41 mark of the second quarter. The Warriors announced his accomplishment on the main scoreboard and Durant received a standing ovation, shaking his head in acknowledgment while still very much in game mode. By late in the fourth quarter, that crowd was making its way for the exits with the game out of reach. The NBA Finals MVP returned from a three-game absence due to a strained right calf and scored 25 points in the first half against the Clippers – KD’s biggest half of the season and the exact number he needed for 20,000. Durant, who had a four-point play during the second quarter on the way to 14 points in the period, is at 29 the second-youngest player behind LeBron James and first to reach the 20,000 mark as a member of the Warriors. OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) – Golden State star Stephen Curry was out for the Warriors’ home game against the Clippers after he slipped during the shootaround and re-sprained his troublesome right ankle. The Warriors updated their injury report to include Curry’s status. It’s the same injury that recently sidelined him for 11 games, though coach Steve Kerr said ”I don’t think it’s serious.” No MRI or X-rays were scheduled for now though Curry was sore and the Warriors won’t take any chances. NEW YORK (AP) – The NBA has suspended Miami Heat forward James Johnson and Toronto Raptors forward Serge Ibaka one game apiece for throwing punches at each other. The punishment was announced by Kiki VanDeWeghe, the league’s executive vice president for basketball operations. The fight began with 7:50 remaining in the third quarter of the Heat’s 90-89 victory over the Raptors on Tuesday night in Toronto. Ibaka and Johnson started shoving each other while waiting for the ball to be inbounded under the Miami basket. Both received technical fouls and ejections. PRO FOOTBALL ALAMEDA Josh Jackson Color Rush Jersey , Calif. (AP) – The Fritz Pollard Alliance called for the NFL to investigate whether the Oakland Raiders violated the ”Rooney Rule” when they hired Jon Gruden as coach. Fritz Pollard Alliance counsel Cyrus Mehri and N. Jeremi Duru said they were concerned that Raiders owner Mark Davis came to an agreement with Gruden before the team interviewed any minority candidates as required by the NFL since 2003. ”As soon as we learned of the reports, we formally requested that the NFL thoroughly investigate the matter to conclusively determine whether the Rooney Rule was violated – and if it was violated, to impose an appropriate punishment,” they said. The Fritz Pollard Alliance is dedicated to promoting diversity and equality of job opportunity in the coaching, front office and scouting staffs of NFL teams. Davis said Tuesday at the news conference introducing Gruden as the team’s new coach that he had been trying to make the move for six years and finally believed it would happen after a meeting in Philadelphia on Christmas Eve, the day before Gruden worked a game between the Raiders and Eagles on ESPN. RENTON, Wash. (AP) – What’s expected to be an offseason makeover for the Seattle Seahawks is starting with its coaching staff. The Seahawks fired offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell and offensive line coach Tom Cable. Bevell was in charge of calling plays, while Cable was responsible for a run game and offensive line that failed to meet expectations. It was a stunning sweep for head coach Pete Carroll, who has been immensely loyal to his assistants during his tenure. Carroll’s only other significant firing was offensive coordinator Jeremy Bates following the 2010 season, Carroll’s first in Seattle. Most times when assistants have left, it’s because they’ve received promotions elsewhere. COLLEGE FOOTBALL HOUSTON (AP) – Scott Frost has one final award to share with the University of Central Florida. The former UCF coach and new Nebraska boss received the Paul ”Bear” Bryant Coach of the Year Award on Wednesday night. Frost is first since former Boise State coach Chris Petersen in 2009 with a non-Power 5 program. This completes the awards season for Frost. In the past few weeks Taven Bryan Color Rush Jersey , Frost also claimed the Home Depot Coach of the Year, American Football Coaches Association Coach of the Year, AP Coach of the Year and Eddie Robinson Coach of the Year awards. UCF rolled past Memphis 62-55 in the American Athletic Conference Championship game, and beat Auburn 34-27 in the Chick-Fil-A Peach Bowl to finish 13-0. UCF finished ranked No. 6 in the final AP Poll of the season, receiving four first place votes. BASEBALL NEW YORK (AP) – Jay Bruce and his proven bat are headed back to the New York Mets. The free-agent outfielder is set to return to the Big Apple after agreeing to a $39 million, three-year contract, according to two people familiar with the negotiations. The people spoke on condition of anonymity because the deal is pending a physical and no announcement had been made. A three-time All-Star, Bruce hit a combined .254 with 36 home runs and 101 RBIs for the Mets and Cleveland Indians last season. After falling out of playoff contention, New York traded him to the AL Central champions on Aug. 9 for minor league pitcher Ryder Ryan. Bruce, who turns 31 on April 3, fills a hole in the outfi A look at what’s happening around the majors today: NEED A HAND The Giants are looking for answers at the back of the bullpen after closer Hunter Strickland broke his hand Monday night punching a door in frustration. Strickland blew a save in a 5-4 loss to Miami Minkah Fitzpatrick Color Rush Jersey , then cost himself six to eight weeks with his postgame outburst. Manager Bruce Bochy said Strickland had shown maturity and progress keeping his emotions in check since a fight last year with Nationals star Bryce Harper, leading Bochy to feel ”thoroughly disappointed” by this injury. Sam Dyson and Tony Watson will be called upon for closing duties, with one getting most of the opportunities, though Bochy didn’t reveal which one that would be. The manager doesn’t consider Mark Melancon – signed to a $62 million, four-year deal before last season to work the ninth – ready for the role after a series of injuries. KING OF THE BRONX Felix Hernandez (6-6, 5.44 ERA) pitches for Seattle at Yankee Stadium in the middle game of a series between AL playoff contenders. King Felix is 7-2 with a 2.00 ERA over 11 career starts in the Bronx, including 6-1 with a 1.41 ERA in nine outings at the current Yankee Stadium. The 32-year-old righty, a six-time All-Star and the 2010 AL Cy Young Award winner, is 10-7 with a 3.04 ERA and four complete games in 21 starts against New York overall. Jonathan Loaisiga (1-0) gets the ball for the Yankees after throwing five scoreless innings to win his major league debut vs. Tampa Bay last Friday. SUPER KLUBER Corey Kluber tries to become the major league’s first 11-game winner this season when Cleveland hosts the White Sox. Kluber (10-3, 2.24) won five straight decisions before losing to Minnesota last time out, giving up two homers and four runs in a 6-3 defeat. Chicago starter Reynaldo Lopez (2-4 Mike Hughes Color Rush Jersey , 3.35) is looking to solve the reigning AL Central champs after they tagged him for seven runs in 2 2/3 innings on May 30. PITCHING IN Anibal Sanchez hopes to give the upstart Braves a little more late-career magic. The 34-year-old Sanchez (3-0, 1.93) has been excellent for Atlanta, most recently throwing seven scoreless innings against San Diego. Sanchez has been a surprise contributor after posting a 6.09 ERA over his final two seasons in Detroit and signing with the Braves on a minor league contract in March. He’ll face Blue Jays lefty J.A. Happ (8-3, 3.48) in Toronto in the afternoon. ROLLING ROSS Ross Stripling (6-1, 1.76) tries to win his seventh consecutive start when the Dodgers complete a three-game set against the Cubs at Wrigley Field. Stripling joined LA’s rotation amid a bevy of injuries and has been consistently on point, walking just two batters over his past seven starts (43 innings). Chicago will counter with Jon Lester (8-2, 2.28). —
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    Jake Arrieta and Gio Gonzalez should be happy to see the calendar flip to July. They’ll hope to put a rough June behind them when they face off Sunday in the finale of a four-game set between the Philadelphia Phillies and the Washington Nationals. The Phillies will try to win the series in the 1:35 p.m. matinee. Arrieta (5-6 Pat McAfee Jersey , 3.54 ERA) had a 6.66 ERA in five June starts. Opponents hit .305 with a .907 OPS against him in the month, and the veteran right-hander allowed at least three earned runs in each outing. In his last start, Arrieta gave up six runs (three earned) in five innings against the New York Yankees on nine hits, two of which were homers. “The ball is getting hit, that’s it. Making mistakes, too many mistakes Jack Doyle Jersey ,” Arrieta told MLB.com after the start. “I was throwing quality breaking balls early in the count and then when I needed to go back to a similar spot or a little bit lower in the strike zone or out of the strike zone, I just put it too much in the zone and they hit it. It’s a pretty simple explanation.” Arrieta had a 0.90 ERA in five starts during May, and he gave up just one run and two hits in six innings against the Nationals on May 6. Arrieta is 1-2 with a 5.02 ERA in 10 career starts against the Nationals. Gonzalez (6-5, 3.68) had an even worse June. The 32-year-old lefty had an 8.44 ERA in five starts during the month. In three of those outings, Gonzalez gave up at least four earned runs and failed to pitch more than four innings. Gonzalez had his worst start of 2018 the last time he took the mound. He gave up six runs and walked five batters in one inning against the Tampa Bay Rays on Monday. “It wasn’t my night. I couldn’t get a strike,” Gonzalez Adam Vinatieri Jersey , who missed the strike zone with 33 of his 62 pitches, told reporters after the outing. “Sometimes it happens. It’s part of the game.” Gonzalez will be facing the Phillies for the 25th time in his 11-year big league career. He is 11-7 with a 2.60 ERA and 1.13 WHIP against the Nationals’ divisional rival. Gonzalez threw five scoreless innings against Philadelphia on May 4. The Phillies, who are 5-4 against the Nationals this season, have won two of the first three games against their divisional foe in the series. At 44-37, they are two games ahead of Washington for second place in the National League East. The Phillies were 28-53 through 81 games a season ago. The Phillies hope Odubel Herrera’s bat heats up. The center fielder homered in Saturday’s 3-2 victory after going 2-for-28 in his previous seven games. Herrera is hitting .286 on the season with 14 homers and 46 RBIs. The Nationals, meanwhile Marvin Harrison Jersey , went 9-16 in June and are 42-39 at the halfway mark of the season. Los Angeles Angels infielder Zack Cozart will have season-ending surgery to repair a torn labrum in his left shoulder. The team made the announcement during Wednesday night’s game against the Boston Red Sox. The 32-year-old Cozart went for a second opinion on his shoulder after experiencing continued discomfort. He plans to have surgery in Los Angeles soon. A free agent last offseason, Cozart left the Cincinnati Reds to sign a $38 million, three-year contract with the Angels and agreed to switch positions from shortstop to third base. He played in just 58 games during his first season with Los Angeles, batting .219 with five homers and 18 RBIs. ”I think this has been battling him on and off for a little bit, I mean in previous years. And it got to the point where something needs to be done and for Zack it’s the best course of action, for our organization the best course of action Le'Raven Clark Jersey , and he’ll be 100 percent for next year,” manager Mike Scioscia said after his team’s 9-6 loss to the Red Sox. Cozart spent his first seven years in the big leagues with Cincinnati. —