Florida Sports News

Venters Returns, Crazy Eights, Rays Extend Win Streak To Five

Sports Talk Florida - 2 hours 37 min ago
Rays Set Franchise Mark, Score 8-Runs For Fourth Game In A Row AP Photo/Patrick Semansky

The Tampa Bay Rays won their fifth straight game defeating the Baltimore Orioles 8-4. Andrew Kittredge (1-2, 5.23 ERA) picks up the win for the Rays who improve to 9-13 on the year. Former Ray Alex Cobb (0-3, 13,11 ERA) took the loss for the Orioles who drop to 6-18 on the year.

It was a complete team effort for the Rays who used a potent offense to battle back from a 3-1 deficit scoring four in the fifth inning, a run in the sixth, and two in the seventh.

“Obviously offensively everybody contributed,” said Manager Kevin Cash. “A lot of our pitchers contributed. Matt Andriese give him a lot of credit. We haven’t found that role for him here lately, it worked out tonight that’s kind of how we drew it up.”

More On The Offense:

The Rays offense continued to assault opposing pitching. For the first time in franchise history, their offense scored eight or more runs in four consecutive games.

Over the last seven games the Rays have scored 48 runs on 80 hits while batting .326 as a team with 10 homers. They are hitting .354 with runners in scoring position.

Every member of the lineup had a hit. Joey Wendle went 3-for-5 with three RBI and is now hitting .328. Daniel Roberston reached base four times getting two hits, hit by a pitch, and drawing a walk. He’s now batting .340. Denard Span had a pair of hits and scored a pair of runs. Adeiny Hechavarria also had a multi-hit game including his second homer of the season.

Faria Struggles:

Jake Faria was not sharp working just 4.1-innings allowing four earned runs on four hits while walking five and striking out and walking three. He threw 83 pitches with 50 for strikes.

The Pen Shuts It Down:

After the Rays took the lead in the top of the fifth, Jake Faria came out to open the bottom of the inning. He struck out Trey Mancini to open the inning, but allowed a home run to Chance Sisco that cut the Rays lead to 5-4 and ended his night. Andrew Kittredge came in and retired the final two batters of the inning.

Jonny Venters, who hadn’t appeared in a MLB game since the 2012 NL Wild Card game, opened the sixth inning. He needed just four pitches to retire Chris Davis on a ground ball to third baseman Daniel Robertson. It had been 2028 days since his last appearance. (Read More About Venters Here)

“It was an amazing experience, just to get out there on a big league mound. In a big league game.” Venter said. “To be able to get an out and help this team win was a special thing. I’ll never forget the rest of my life.” His family was in attendance at the game, “dream come true, really.” he added.

Jonny's journey.#RaysUp pic.twitter.com/blxHTuyHND

— Tampa Bay Rays (@RaysBaseball) April 26, 2018

Matt Andriese came in to replace Venters and retired eight of the nine batters he faced before turning the ball over to Jose Alvarado.  Alvarado retired the side in order to secure the victory.

Up Next For Rays: 

Tampa Bay and Baltimore will finish their rain shortened series Thursday at 7:05.  Chris Archer (1-1, 6.59 ERA) takes the hill for the Rays. The Orioles counter with Dylan Bundy (1-2, 1.42 ERA).

The post Venters Returns, Crazy Eights, Rays Extend Win Streak To Five appeared first on Sports Talk Florida.

Categories: Florida Sports News

Jonny Venters Completes Long Journey Back To Big Leagues

Sports Talk Florida - 3 hours 44 min ago
Venters Returns To MLB After 2,028 Day Absence 

6 years and THREE Tommy John surgeries later, Jonny Venters made his return to the Majors. pic.twitter.com/bdDSL3zvYK

— Cut4 (@Cut4) April 26, 2018

Jonny Venters had not pitched in a big league game since the 2012 NL Wild Card game while he was a member of the Atlanta Braves. He underwent Tommy John surgies in 2005, 2013, and 2014.  In 2016, he underwent an additional, “half-Tommy John” by Dr. Neal ElAttrache.

Prior to Wednesday night’s game against the Baltimore Orioles, the Rays recalled Venters from Triple-A Durham.  To make room on the roster, Hunter Wood was optioned.

Venters arrived at Durham Bulls Athletic Park early in the morning as the Bulls had a 10:30 a.m. first pitch against the Buffalo Bison. The game was delayed by rain and while waiting for the tarp to come off the field he was told that he was being recalled by the Rays.

“It’s hard to put into words how I’m feeling. It’s been an emotional day,” Venters told reporters. “I’m excited to be here. Grateful for the opportunity. Hopefully go out and get some people out today.”

He entered the game in the bottom of the sixth inning to face Chris Davis. He retired Davis on a groundball to third baseman Daniel Robertson on four pitches.

According to an online Tommy John database compiled by Jon Roegele of FanGraphs, Venters is the first pitcher ever to return to the majors after three Tommy John surgeries

Per the Elias Sports Bureau:
  • Venters is the first All-Star to return to the major leagues after missing at least 5 years (5 years, 202 days) since 1997 All-Star Justin Thompson. Thompson who returned with Texas on Aug 18, 2005. It was his first game since Aug 15, 1999, a gap of 6 years, 3 days.
  • The last player to return to the majors after missing 5 years or more was St Louis Cardinal Chad Huffman. He returned on June 8, 2017, his first game since July 3, 2010 (6 years, 340 days).
  • The last pitcher to return to the majors after missing 5 years or more was Chicago White Sox Gregory Infante. He made his return on May 15, 2017, his first game since October 1, 2010 (6 years, 226 days).
The Road Back:

Jonny's journey.#RaysUp pic.twitter.com/blxHTuyHND

— Tampa Bay Rays (@RaysBaseball) April 26, 2018

On March 11, 2015 the Rays signed him to a minor league deal. They had hoped to be the beneficiary of a long and patient rehab process. He continued his rehab and crawled back on top of the mound at George Steinbrenner Field on June 4, 2016. That night, he logged an inning with the Rays High-A affiliate Charlotte Stone Crabs.

It was his first live game action since he took the mound on October 3, 2012 for the Atlanta Braves against the Pittsburgh Pirates. Unfortunately, the feel good story wouldn’t last.  Venters comeback was cut short after hurting his elbow in an outing for the Crabs on June 20th. He had a fourth surgery on his elbow to re-attach a ligament, by Dr. Neal ElAttrache.

It was a surprise to see him rejoin the Rays in 2017 and continue to attempt a comeback from 3 1/2 Tommy John Surgeries, but Venters was determined. Overall, in 2017 across the Rays minor leagues in 2017 he was able to log 23.2-innings in 24 games striking out 11 batters per nine innings.

In five games with the Durham Bulls this season, Venters has worked 5.2-innings allowing 1-earned run while striking out six and walking five.

 

 

The post Jonny Venters Completes Long Journey Back To Big Leagues appeared first on Sports Talk Florida.

Categories: Florida Sports News

The NFL Draft: A Study In Salary Suppression

Sports Talk Florida - 4 hours 37 min ago

Hold down those salaries.

 

There are numerous non-football people who make a lot of money analyzing the National Football League draft who will never say these words. The National Football League draft is a violation of the Sherman Antitrust Act and is only made legal through collective bargaining. The draft is illegal as it stops elite college football players from shopping around for the best job. The players are denied choices where they can work. They have just one place to go. If they decide not to report to the team that drafts them, those players can sit out, force a trade or play in Canada.

Here is how the draft becomes legal even though a third party, the incoming college players are hurt. NFL owners and the National Football League Players Association can collectively bargain conditions for the draft and if that means shutting down college football players job possibilities so be it. The cottage industry that makes a ton of money talking essentially about nothing, college players being drafted into the NFL, needs to keep the pretense going and say nothing. The league claims it wants competitive balance and having the worst football teams take the best players in a draft order that starts with the worst team picking first does that. But in reality, that isn’t the reason that the owners want the draft. By having a draft, the owners can suppress salaries and stop owners from bidding for the best college players. Football fans want every bit of information on players with the hopes that their team will get the best of the available players through the draft. What they really are celebrating is a suppression of trade and NFL owners are very happy no one notices or cares that the draft is essentially illegally that it is only legit through collective bargaining and a union agreeing to terms. The draft is a salary suppression tactic.

NFL DRAFT 2014 at the Radio City Music Hall

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Categories: Florida Sports News

Bruins vs Maple Leafs: Game 7 Preview

Sports Talk Florida - Wed, 04/25/2018 - 16:52

Winner to determine Lightning opponent, time of game 1

One spot remains for the semi-final round of the Eastern Conference Playoffs. After tonight, one of the NHL’s best teams will be out and the survivor will face the Tampa Bay Lightning. Game Seven is already the most exciting phrase in hockey, but despite only being a first round series, tonight’s Game Seven will be a touch more special.

It features two of the NHL’s most decorated franchises and two teams in different organizational statuses. The Boston Bruins are recent Stanley Cup Champions and for a portion of the season, favorites for the Cup this year. They lean on their top line of David Pastrnak, Patrice Bergeron, and Brad Marchand, but also feature remarkable forward depth with David Krejci, Danton Heinen, Noel Acciari, and recent pickup Ryan Donato. All can score, all can skate, and all can give the Leafs fits.

Their blue line is anchored by Zdeno Chara and Charlie McAvoy, wildly different players who embody the Bruins perfectly. Chara symbolizes the strength and size that has always defined Bruins hockey, dating back to Eddie Shore. McAvoy symbolizes the American and Collegiate pipelines to young skill and excitement the Bruins have developed in recent years. Depth like Matt Grzelyck, Torey Krug, and Adam McQuaid give Boston plenty to work with on the backend.

And backing up the Bruins in net is Tuuka Rask, whom Toronto gifted to Boston for Andrew Raycroft back in 2005, a move that still haunts the Leafs’ franchise. Rask has his name on the Stanley Cup and on the Vezina Trophy and promises to be the same, reliable Tuuka on home ice.

While Boston has seen recent success, the Toronto Maple Leafs are one of the least successful teams in the expansion era. They’ve not won a playoff series in 13 years, and famously lost their last playoff Game Seven against Boston in 2013. Despite the bad history, the new generation of Leafs carries themselves with swagger and confidence that only skilled youth can bring. Auston Matthews won the Calder Trophy last year and helped Toronto put a scare into the President’s Trophy winning Washington Capitals. This year, he has cemented himself as a superstar in the league and the face of the Leafs. While he’s not been at his best this series, Matthews still draws the brunt of likely Selke winner Patrice Bergeron’s defensive time. William Nylander, Mitch Marner, Tyler Bozak, and James van Riemsdyk have picked up the scoring in Matthews’ slump and kept the Leafs humming along. Veterans Patrick Marleau has provided guile and experience and Nazm Kadri returned from suspension with a bang for Games Five and Six. The forwards promise to give Boston more problems in the final game.

The Leafs’ blue line has never been a strength, but they can still burn Boston. Nikita Zaitsev, Morgan Rielly and Jake Gardiner can all skate both ways and jump into the offensive play. They can play their own end, but they’ve all made mistakes in their own end. Ron Hainsey and Roman Polak play tough, but both lack the speed to keep with some of Boston’s top skaters. They make up for it with veteran guile and good stick work, but if Boston has any advantage, it’s on the blue line.

While the blue line is suspect, Toronto has the luxury of a high quality goaltender. Frederick Anderson has been spectacular since Game Three, and has recorded 40, 42, and 32 save wins to propel the Leafs to victory. If he’s on, Boston will have a hard time pulling out a victory.

Boston has the advantage of playing infront of a packed house at TD Garden with some of the loudest fans in all of sports. But Toronto has the emotion of representing their city after Monday’s terrible terrorist attack. They carried the heart of their city on their sleeves in Game Six and played their best game of the series. They’ll be prepared for Game Seven.

Boston is the more decorated team. They’ve won the Stanley Cup, Rask has a Vezina, Chara has a Norris, and Bergeron has four Selkes and is in line to win his record fifth this summer. Chara and Bergeron are both future Hall of Famers who will have their numbers retired after they’re done playing and have led the Bruins to success. They lead a hungry troop of talented players that can win the Stanley Cup this season.

Toronto is new on the playoff stage, but capable of winning. Matthews is a superstar. Nylander, Marner, Marleau, and Anderson are all capable of being heroes. And the team represents a city that needs a hero and a franchise that is being reborn.

The game will not only determine the Lightning’s conference semifinal opponent, but the timing of game 1.  If the Bruins win, game 1 will be Saturday at 3:00.  If the Maple Leafs win, the game will take place at 8:00 on Saturday, as Saturday is of course Hockey Night In Canada.

Who will win? No idea. Game Seven is a different beast. The puck drops at 7:30. Don’t miss it.

The post Bruins vs Maple Leafs: Game 7 Preview appeared first on Sports Talk Florida.

Categories: Florida Sports News

Meet Didi Gregorius, the Yankees’ Most Underappreciated Star

Sports Talk Florida - Wed, 04/25/2018 - 16:42

Yankee shortstop a key piece of the puzzle

On a roster oozing with star power, Didi Gregorius is often forgotten about as a necessary variable to the Yankees championship equation. With all the big names currently lacing up for the pinstripes, it is easy to lose sight of Gregorius, who may be the most well-rounded player on this team. Born in the Amsterdam, Netherlands, Mariekson Julius “Didi” Gregorius is in his prime at 28 years old and looks to be blossoming into one of the premier shortstops in the game. The nickname Didi is a family name his father went by which has stuck in the United States as it is easier to pronounce than Mariekson. A 3rd generation baseball player, his father and grandfather both played baseball professionally. Didi Sr. played for the Amsterdam Pirates and his grandfather was a 6 foot 7 pitcher for Lucky Strike, a team in his native Curacao. Baseball runs in this young player’s veins and the underappreciated star has a lot to prove this season.

Follow Yankees Shortstop Didi Gregorius on Twitter @DidiG18

Through 22 games this season, Didi Gregorius is hitting .347 to go along with 8 homeruns, 7 doubles and 27 runs batted in. Up to this point, he has walked more than he has struck out (9:15 K:BB ratio) and looks to poised to build on last year’s breakout campaign where he put up big numbers and finished in the top 20 in AL MVP voting. The middle infielder has shown that he can be a middle of the order producing hitter and is a key cog in the Yankees lineup. He has proven to be a piece that perfectly complements the all or nothing approach that is prevalent in this lineup structure. Through his high contact rate and gap-to-gap approach, he is the ideal fit to hit in front of the big boppers the Bronx bombers currently deploy. Although never discussed when talking about the stars in the Yanks lineup, Gregorius who looks to be more than able to take on the task. In the post-Jeter era, the shortstop position has been solidified by the Dutch magician and no baseball mind can downplay the importance of solidifying the center of the field to any baseball team that wants to be successful.

Winning teams are filled with players exactly like Didi Gregorius. Not only is he developing into the perfect bat to hit alongside teammates Stanton, Judge and Sanchez, he is also a reliable defender at the games most demanding position aside from catcher. In a Yankees uniform, he has been consistent defensively, posting only 9 errors in 135 games last year and has 1 error so far in 2018. The wiry athlete has always had the talent and range to be a great defender, the difference in his development in New York has been through the mental aspect of the game where he has matured and limited mistakes that his position, with the high volume of chances, can have a high tendency to make.

In the three-team trade that brought the shortstop to New York, (Didi Gregorius to NY, Shane Greene to DET, and Robbie Ray to ARI) no fan thought he would have the impact that he is having today. Gregorius displayed weaknesses in his early development that pointed towards a lack of power in his swing, and patience in his approach that would hinder his value as an offensive player. He looked to be a spray type contact hitter who did not really hit for a high average. Many thought that he would be a stepping stone for some other splashy free agent shortstop but rest assured that this versatile, dynamic playmaker will be as important as anyone in a Yankees post season run. Overcoming these perceived weaknesses is nothing strange to the budding star. Throughout his young career, he seemed destined to be a “glove only” shortstop who lacked the pop to be a threat at the plate on a consistent basis. On the contrary, he has developed into an excellent left-handed hitter with unexpected power, taking full advantage of the short right field dimensions of Yankee Stadium.

Proving the doubters wrong has been a part of his plan all along and he has to stepped up in the spotlight for the Yankees. The Dutch-born star developed into an all-around Major League stud who can not only make all the necessary defensive plays but also support the team offensively as a run producer with game changing extra base hit ability. Stanton, Judge and Sanchez are great hitters but are also very streaky, so his consistency will be an integral part of plans at an extended postseason run. It is a pleasure to introduce you to do Didi Gregorius, the Yankees’ most underappreciated star and a crucial piece to their ultimate goal of another World Series.

The post Meet Didi Gregorius, the Yankees’ Most Underappreciated Star appeared first on Sports Talk Florida.

Categories: Florida Sports News

Wade, Ginobili will not be rushed over retirement decisions

Yahoo! Sports - NBA - Miami Heat News - Wed, 04/25/2018 - 11:38

Dwyane Wade and Manu Ginobili each said they would not rush into decisions over their playing futures after the Miami Heat and San Antonio Spurs were eliminated from the NBA playoffs on Tuesday. A 12-time All-Star and the winner of three NBA titles, Wade was part of the Heat side beaten 104-91 by the Philadelphia 76ers in game five of their series. Wade, 36, was subsequently asked how he would find new inspiration if he plans on coming back for next season.

Categories: Florida Sports News

The Upstart Sixers Advance To The Second Round

Yahoo! Sports - NBA - Miami Heat News - Wed, 04/25/2018 - 10:54

The Philadelphia 76ers advanced to the second round of the NBA playoffs after defeating the Miami Heat in their Eastern Conference first-round series.

Categories: Florida Sports News

Marlins rookie Richards starts against Dodgers' Kershaw

Yahoo! Sports - MLB - Miami Marlins News - Wed, 04/25/2018 - 09:57

Trevor Richards' first-ever trip to California will end late Wednesday, but not before he has an experience he never will forget. In his fifth career start, Richards will take the mound for the Miami Marlins in an early evening contest at Dodger Stadium and square off against Cy Young Award winner Clayton Kershaw. Richards won't have any time to be in awe.

Categories: Florida Sports News

Embiid, Simmons led 76ers from Process to postseason success

Yahoo! Sports - NBA - Miami Heat News - Wed, 04/25/2018 - 09:12

Kevin Hart laughed as he tried to floss dance with a kid as they were both egged on by rapper Meek Mill. Philadelphia Eagles owner Jeffrey Lurie awkwardly waved his arms around the way any 60-something-year-old man would attempting to look hip next to star entertainers. Ben Simmons, Joel Embiid and the rest of the Sixers stole the show.

Categories: Florida Sports News

NBA roundup: Sixers, Warriors advance

Yahoo! Sports - NBA - Miami Heat News - Wed, 04/25/2018 - 08:45

JJ Redick scored 27 points to lift the Philadelphia 76ers past the visiting Miami Heat 104-91 to clinch the teams' first-round playoff series in five games Tuesday night. Redick scored 20 or more points in consecutive playoff games for the first time in his career as the third-seeded Sixers advanced to the Eastern Conference semifinals for the first time since 2012. Joel Embiid scored 19 points and grabbed 12 rebounds while Ben Simmons had 14 points, 10 rebounds and six assists.

Categories: Florida Sports News

Spurs, Heat eliminated as Celtics go up 3-2

Yahoo! Sports - NBA - Miami Heat News - Wed, 04/25/2018 - 08:39

The Philadelphia 76ers beat the Miami Heat 104-91 behind 27 points from J.J. Redick to win their NBA playoff series 4-1 on Tuesday. While the final game was as chippy as all the others this series, this was about Philadelphia taking the next step. "We play the way we want to play, and that's sharing the ball," Joel Embiid told reporters. "We're the best defensive team in the league.

Categories: Florida Sports News

The 76ers' celebration of Brett Brown's first playoff series win was pretty great

Yahoo! Sports - NBA - Miami Heat News - Wed, 04/25/2018 - 07:50

The Philadelphia 76ers are moving on to the Eastern Conference semifinals, overwhelming the dogged but outgunned Miami Heat to earn a convincing and impressive 4-1 win, It’s just Philly’s second trip to the second round in the last 15 seasons, and it’s the first playoff series victory for rising stars Joel Embiid, Ben Simmons, Dario Saric … and, for that matter, head coach Brett Brown. Nobody has more fully borne the weight of the 76ers’ yearslong rebuilding process than Brown, who took the lead job in Philadelphia just over a month after a just-hired general manager named Sam Hinkie began dismantling a decent-but-not-good-enough team by trading All-Star point guard Jrue Holiday for Nerlens Noel, an enticing defensive prospect who maybe wasn’t going to play as a rookie after tearing the ACL in his left knee, and a future first-round draft pick.

Categories: Florida Sports News

Heat put on ice as 76ers advance

Yahoo! Sports - NBA - Miami Heat News - Wed, 04/25/2018 - 07:28

The Philadelphia 76ers advanced to the second round of the NBA Eastern Conference playoffs on Tuesday, defeating the Miami Heat 104-91 to seal a 4-1 series victory. J.J. Redick scored 27 points and Joel Embiid weighed in with 19 as the Sixers set up a second round meeting against either Boston or Milwaukee. A fiercely contested duel at Philadelphia's Wells Fargo Center was effectively settled in the third quarter, when the Sixers pulled clear to take a decisive lead.

Categories: Florida Sports News

Believe it! 76ers roll with Meek Mill past Heat in Game 5

Yahoo! Sports - NBA - Miami Heat News - Wed, 04/25/2018 - 06:56

Joel Embiid hoisted diminutive comedian Kevin Hart not unlike the way a parent would toss up a toddler. Embiid then pulled him in for a hug as confetti rained on the court, team flags waved around them and the promise of a rowdy late-night celebration was on deck. Believe it, Philly.

Categories: Florida Sports News

Sixers players douse Brett Brown, present him with bell after closing Heat (VIDEO)

Yahoo! Sports - NBA - Miami Heat News - Wed, 04/25/2018 - 06:51

The Philadelphia 76ers are moving on. After beating the Miami Heat on Tuesday night, 104-91, this iteration of the Sixers experienced their first playoff series win together. It was also the first series win for coach Brett Brown as the man in charge of an NBA team.

Categories: Florida Sports News

Buehler! Top Prospect Shines In Dodgers’ 2-1 Win Over Miami

Sports Talk Florida - Wed, 04/25/2018 - 06:11

Goes five scoreless innings in MLB debut

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Walker Buehler asked a reporter if he had anything in his teeth before the TV lights turned on.

The Dodgers’ prized prospect was equally cool on the mound, tossing five scoreless innings in his first major league start, and Los Angeles defeated the Miami Marlins 2-1 on Monday night.

“He’s pretty confident and cocky,” shortstop Enrique Hernandez said. “We kind of like his attitude sometimes.”

Buehler topped out at 99 mph while allowing four hits in an 89-pitch outing. The 23-year-old right-hander struck out five and walked three in helping the Dodgers (11-10) move above .500 for the first time this season with their third straight win.

“He’s a guy with a tremendous arm,” Marlins manager Don Mattingly said.

Cody Bellinger drove in the go-ahead run with a sacrifice fly in the eighth.

“We’re finally starting to play good and we’ve got to keep it going,” said Hernandez, who homered on a 3-2 pitch from Marlins starter Jarlin Garcia in the fourth to give the Dodgers a 1-0 lead.

Hernandez backed Buehler with two sparkling defensive plays in place of shortstop Corey Seager, who struck out as a pinch hitter in the eighth.

After Buehler issued a two-out walk to Garcia, Hernandez made a diving stop on a ball headed up the middle and whipped around to complete a pinpoint throw to first to end the inning.

Hernandez turned in a similar play in the third to throw out Starlin Castro for the second out.

“They don’t do that very much in low-A ball,” Buehler said. “These guys are really good.”

Buehler pitched himself in and out of trouble in the first.

After retiring leadoff hitter Miguel Rojas on a grounder, Buehler gave up consecutive singles on identical 89 mph sliders to J.T. Realmuto and Castro. Brian Anderson took a called third strike before Cameron Maybin walked to load the bases.

But Buehler was unruffled. He got JB Shuck on a swinging strike to end the inning and start a run of retiring seven of eight batters.

“I’ve had the bases loaded a lot in my life,” Buehler said. “It would be great to dominate, but to put up zeros and come out of the game unscathed is the biggest thing. The more and more comfortable you get here, I think the fastball command will come.”

Maybin singled on a 95 mph fastball from Buehler in the fourth.

Realmuto singled on a 78 mph curve from Buehler with two outs in the fifth before he induced an inning-ending groundout from Castro.

“He has a really good fastball and he mixed four different pitches, which is pretty rare for a guy who can throw that hard,” Realmuto said.

Garcia gave up one run and four hits in six innings. He struck out seven and walked one as the Marlins fell to 2-8 on the road with their season-high fifth straight loss overall.

Miami tied it 1-all in the eighth on Anderson’s RBI single off J.T. Chargois.

Chris Taylor doubled leading off the bottom half, went to third on Hernandez’s bunt single and scored on Bellinger’s lineout to right.

Adam Liberatore (1-0) got the win in relief, his first since July 21, 2016. Josh Fields pitched the ninth for his first save.

Kyle Barraclough (0-1) took the loss, allowing one run and two hits in the eighth.

Buehler, drafted in the first round by the Dodgers in 2015 out of Vanderbilt, made his major league debut last September as a reliever when the team insisted on limiting his innings. He allowed eight runs in 9 1/3 innings last year and didn’t make the playoff roster.

Buehler pitched sparingly in spring training, giving up one hit without allowing a run in four innings. He began the season at Triple-A Oklahoma City, going 1-0 with a 2.10 ERA in three starts.

Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said Buehler’s performance didn’t change anything as far as the team’s cautious approach with him.

“There is a learning curve that is happening before our eyes,” he said. “We’ve got to think about the next decision.”

TRAINER’S ROOM

Marlins: RHP Elieser Hernandez (tooth infection) will throw five innings Tuesday when he begins a rehab assignment. … Martin Prado (left hamstring strain) will play seven innings at third base Tuesday in the start of a rehab assignment. … JT Riddle (right shoulder tendinitis) will play five innings at shortstop in his rehab assignment. … 1B-OF Garrett Cooper (bruised right wrist) will begin range-of-motion exercises.

Dodgers: 2B-3B Logan Forsythe (right shoulder inflammation) took grounders and did some throwing, but no rehab assignment has been scheduled. … LHP Rich Hill (left middle finger inflammation) is set to throw 75 pitches in a simulated game Tuesday.

HEAVY WORKLOAD

Buehler’s 89 pitches were the most he’s thrown in his pro career. He said it was also the most since he pitched in the College World Series. “It was kind of a wake up for me,” he said. “I’ve felt for a while that I can throw more, but as I said, I understand it and we’ll move forward that way.”

UP NEXT

LHP Dillon Peters (2-2, 6.98 ERA) starts for the Marlins against RHP Kenta Maeda (2-1, 3.77).

___

By Beth Harris of the Associated Press

The post Buehler! Top Prospect Shines In Dodgers’ 2-1 Win Over Miami appeared first on Sports Talk Florida.

Categories: Florida Sports News

Gregorius, Sanchez, Yanks Top Twins 8-3

Sports Talk Florida - Wed, 04/25/2018 - 06:06

Win is Yankees’ fourth straight

NEW YORK (AP) — Didi Gregorius had another big game at Yankee Stadium with a two-run homer and three RBIs, and Gary Sanchez homered twice to help CC Sabathia and New York romp past the Minnesota Twins yet again, 8-3 on Tuesday night.

Aaron Judge hit his seventh home run as the Yankees went deep four times for the second straight night. Gleyber Torres had a pair of hits and his first RBI for New York, which extended a winning streak to four for the first time under new manager Aaron Boone and sent the Twins to their season-worst fifth consecutive loss.

A night after a 14-1 drubbing, New York beat Minnesota for the sixth straight time and improved to 27-9 against the Twins at new Yankee Stadium, including the playoffs. Judge was a triple short of the cycle and Gregorius also had three hits.

Sabathia (1-0) rarely allowed hard contact in his second start back from the disabled list and gave up an unearned run and two hits in six innings. He is 20-9 in 39 regular-season starts against the Twins.

Gregorius hit an RBI single for a 2-1 lead in the third and pulled a changeup just inside the right-field foul pole and into the second deck for a 5-1 margin in the fifth. All eight of his home runs and 23 of his 27 RBIs this year have come at home. Babe Ruth (1921) and Alex Rodriguez (2007) are the only other Yankees with that many homers and RBIs in the first 22 games.

Jose Berrios (2-2) entered with 14 consecutive scoreless innings and had 29 strikeouts and one walk in his first four outings. He allowed five runs, six hits and two walks in four-plus innings, raising his ERA from 1.63 to 2.84.

Dellin Betances entered with a 5-1 lead in the sixth but lasted just four batters, giving up a pair of walks, a hit and another unearned run. David Robertson pitched out of two-on, one-out trouble by striking out Ehire Adrianza and retiring pinch-hitter Joe Mauer on a comebacker.

Judge led off the bottom half with a loud, opposite-field drive to right off Tyler Duffey, who was brought up from the minors before the game for his season debut. Judge became the fastest in major league history to hit 63 career home runs, doing it in 203 games, four fewer than Mark McGwire.

Sanchez, whose second-inning home run tied the score, hit a two-run drive later in the seventh into the netting above Monument Park in center. Judge, arms crossed, gave Sanchez the silent treatment in the dugout before smiling and giving Sanchez a hug.

Errors by Judge in right, Neil Walker at first, Torres while covering first and Betances raised the Yankees’ total to 22 in 22 games, tied for the major league lead.

Eduardo Escobar had three hits, a walk and an RBI for the Twins. Brian Dozier went 0 for 4 after getting hits in Minnesota’s first 17 games — 24 in a row dating to last season.

EMERGING EMOJI

As the Yankees add new players, Gregorius comes up with additional emojis for his tweets that follow wins. Torres is Baby bottle, Giancarlo Stanton is Volcano and Tyler Austin is Police car. Luis Severino has grown from Baby last season to Child.

WHIFFS

A night after going 4 for 4, Stanton had his second three-strikeout game this season to go along with a pair of five-strikeout games.

HE’S BACK

Released during spring training and re-signed last week, 1B Adam Lind made his season debut for the Yankees’ Class A farm team in Tampa and went 3 for 3 with a double, walk and RBI.

TRAINER’S ROOM

Twins: OF Byron Buxton (migraines) will go to extended spring training after fouling a ball off his left foot Sunday during a rehab assignment with Class A Fort Myers.

Yankees: 3B Brandon Drury (migraines) is on track to start a rehab assignment Wednesday with Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre.

UP NEXT

RHP Sonny Gray (1-1, 8.27 ERA), who has totaled just 16 1/3 innings in four starts, is on the mound for the Yankees on Wednesday night, when RHP Lance Lynn (0-1, 6.00) starts for Minnesota. Lynn’s only previous outing against the Yankees was a five-hit shutout for St. Louis in 2014.

___

By Ronald Blum of the Associated Press.

The post Gregorius, Sanchez, Yanks Top Twins 8-3 appeared first on Sports Talk Florida.

Categories: Florida Sports News

Believe It! 76ers Roll With Meek Mill Past Heat In Game 5

Sports Talk Florida - Wed, 04/25/2018 - 06:03

Miami Heat’s season over

PHILADELPHIA (AP) — Joel Embiid and Ben Simmons shined again in front of rapper Meek Mill, and the dominant duo ushered the nightmares-into-dreams Process of the Philadelphia 76ers into the second round with a 104-91 win over the Miami Heat on Tuesday night.

The 76ers, winners of 10 games just two seasons ago, are in the second round of the Eastern Conference playoffs for the first time since 2012.

They await the winner of Milwaukee-Boston. The Celtics lead the series 3-2.

The Sixers won the series 4-1 and turned the Wells Fargo Center into the wildest house party in the city. Embiid had 19 points and 12 rebounds, Simmons had 14 points and 10 boards, and the entire team had rappers, politicians, actors and kids dancing along for the ride.

Mill made a dramatic return hours after Pennsylvania’s highest court ordered him freed while he appeals decade-old gun and drug convictions.

He was taken from prison by helicopter to Philadelphia, where he rang the ceremonial bell at the start of Game 5.

The post Believe It! 76ers Roll With Meek Mill Past Heat In Game 5 appeared first on Sports Talk Florida.

Categories: Florida Sports News

Believe it! 76ers roll with Meek Mill past Heat in Game 5

Yahoo! Sports - NBA - Miami Heat News - Wed, 04/25/2018 - 05:57

Joel Embiid and Ben Simmons shined again in front of rapper Meek Mill, and the dominant duo ushered the nightmares-into-dreams Process of the Philadelphia 76ers into the second round with a 104-91 win over the Miami Heat on Tuesday night. The 76ers, winners of 10 games just two seasons ago, are in the second round of the Eastern Conference playoffs for the first time since 2012. They await the winner of Milwaukee-Boston. The Celtics lead the series 3-2. The Sixers won the series 4-1 and turned the Wells Fargo Center into the wildest house party in the city. Embiid had 19 points and 12 rebounds, Simmons had 14 points and 10 boards, and the entire team had rappers, politicians, actors and kids

Categories: Florida Sports News

Villanova basketball team snaps photo with Meek Mill prior to 76ers game

Yahoo! Sports - NBA - Miami Heat News - Wed, 04/25/2018 - 05:07

Tuesday’s Game 5 between the Miami Heat and Philadelphia 76ers was a big one for both teams, as the visiting Heat were looking to stave off elimination and the 76ers were one win away from their first playoff series victory in six years. What added to the atmosphere at Wells Fargo Center was the release of hip hop artist Meek Mill, who due to a Pennsylvania Supreme Court ruling was released from prison. Among those also in attendance were the reigning national champion Villanova Wildcats, who along with comedian Kevin Hart, Meek Mill and the artist’s lawyers took a photo prior to the game.

Categories: Florida Sports News

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