Unwritten rules lead to hard feelings in Astros-A’s game

Unwritten rules lead to hard feelings in Astros-A’s game

Samuel:

I agree with this. If it’s a 7-run lead late in the game, you don’t bunt. But it was the first inning and the shift was on. The Astros could still come back and win the game. Or maybe the Astros don’t believe in themselves and got all angry at themselves.

Originally posted on HardballTalk:

As you’ve probably heard, the A’s racked up seven runs in the first inning of their 11-3 win over the Astros on Friday night, knocking starter Jarred Cosart out of the game. That frame only ended when Jed Lowrie, batting for the second time in the inning with a man on, aimed for a bunt single against the shift and was thrown out at first.

Even though the bunt didn’t work and actually helped Houston’s cause, the Astros didn’t take too kindly to it. Paul Clemens’ very first pitch the next time Lowrie was up in the third was aimed at his knee and ended up right between his legs. The second was thrown inside, too. Eventually, Lowrie flew out to left-center and exchanged some words with Jose Altuve as he was taking off his batting gloves by the first base bag, at which point Astros managed Bo Porter exited the…

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Blackhawks coach Joel Quenneville fined for inappropriate gesture

Blackhawks coach Joel Quenneville fined for inappropriate gesture

Samuel:

I would imagine if any other head coaches in the other major sports would even dare try to do something like that. A suspension is likelier in the NFL or NBA. But in hockey, a fine will do.

Originally posted on For The Win:

Geoff Burke, USA TODAY Sports

Geoff Burke, USA TODAY Sports

Chicago Blackhawks coach Joel Quenneville got angry last night when a call didn’t go against the St. Louis Blues as he had hoped.

While yelling at the referees for not handing the St. Louis Blues a delay of game penalty, he made an inappropriate gesture. Making matters worse, it was caught on camera.

The league came down hard on the coach and fined him $25,000.

“I was definitely excited and disappointed at the call,” Quenneville said before the fine was announced. “I apologize for my behavior. It wasn’t very appropriate at all. It was a bush league move on my part.”

The Blackhawks ended up losing in the third overtime and trail the playoff series 1-0.

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The Ducks are putting their playoff trust in a rookie goalie

The Ducks are putting their playoff trust in a rookie goalie

Samuel:

The decision to start Andersen makes sense and the Ducks are investing in their future tonight. They are the top seed and they know they have a little room for this experiment. Ultimately, this first game will decide how they will approach the rest of the series.

Originally posted on For The Win:

Kirby Lee, USA TODAY Sports

Kirby Lee, USA TODAY Sports

The Anaheim Ducks’ decision to start Frederik Andersen tonight makes sense.

He has played better than Jonas Hiller this season and has stolen games in which he has played.

Hiller, meanwhile, has been so-so after the Olympics, going 4-4-3, and had save percentages of .889, .765 and .826 in his last three games. He has not played since April 8.

He also was upset by the Detroit Red Wings last season, giving up seven goals over his last two games as the Ducks blew a 3-2 lead.

Hiller, 32, will be an unrestricted free agent this summer and although Andersen is a rookie, it makes sense to see how he handles the playoff pressure. If he falters tonight, you could always throw Hiller back in for Game 2. If he does well and starts a run, then you know whether to make Hiller an offer.

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Thousands turn out for #BostonStrong photo shoot [pics]

Thousands turn out for #BostonStrong photo shoot [pics]

Samuel:

Beautiful. Strong.

Originally posted on Twitchy:

Thousands of Bostonians turned out for a Sports Illustrated cover shoot Saturday, for a picture that will grace next week’s issue commemorating the first anniversary of the Boston Marathon bombing. Among the crowd were several who had been injured in the blasts, as well as first responders.

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Braves wear throwback uniforms to honor Hank Aaron

Braves wear throwback uniforms to honor Hank Aaron

Samuel:

I love everything the Braves are doing to honor this great milestone.

Originally posted on For The Win:

Bob Daugherty/AP

Bob Daugherty/AP

40 years ago today, Hank Aaron hit his 715th career home run to break Babe Ruth’s all-time record. Now 80 years old, Aaron will be honored at Turner Field Tuesday night as the Braves play the Mets. The team will be wearing the same jerseys that Aaron wore when he passed the Babe.

The number 715 was cut into the outfield grass, and even the bases have a special insignia to honor the the Hall of Famer.

Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

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Indians, Jason Kipnis agree to reported six-year, $52.5M extension

Samuel:

Locking up one of the best second basemen in baseball. That’s a great move for the Indians.

Originally posted on SI Wire:

Jason Kipnis is coming off a breakout season that included an All-Star selection. (Brace Hemmelgarn/Getty Images)

Jason Kipnis’s breakout 2013 season included an All-Star Game selection. (Brace Hemmelgarn/Getty Images)

The Indians and second baseman Jason Kipnis have agreed to a six-year contract extension, the team announced Friday. Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com reports the deal is worth $52.5 million and includes a club option for a seventh year.

Kipnis, 27, is coming off a breakout 2013 season in which he hit .284/.366/.452 (133 OPS+) with 36 doubles, 17 home runs and 30 stolen bases. He finished 11th in AL MVP voting and earned an All-Star Game selection while leading the Indians in runs (86), hits (160), RBI (84) and steals (30).

The Cleveland native was selected by Cleveland in the 2nd round (63rd overall) of the 2009 First-Year Player Draft out of Arizona State.

REITER: Are MLB’s early surprise clubs for real?

From CBSSports.com:

The contract buys out Kipnis’ final pre-arbitration year, three arbitration years and two free agent years. The…

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Stardom Doesn’t Change Where You’re From

Stardom Doesn’t Change Where You’re From

Samuel:

I have been a fan of Richard Sherman since his college days and I still am today. He is a great player, he has a swagger to him that isn’t the best, but it is amazing. But most importantly, he is very intelligent and very outspoken. This piece on his friend DeSean Jackson is wonderfully written.

Originally posted on The MMQB with Peter King:

I’m not going to tell you that DeSean Jackson isn’t in a gang, because I can’t say unequivocally that he isn’t. I can’t tell you whether his friends have done the things police have accused them of doing, because I wasn’t there. I can’t tell you what DeSean does with his time, because we play football on opposite ends of the country. I can only tell you that I believe him to be a good person, and if you think, say or write otherwise without knowing the man, you’re in the wrong.

And if it’s true the Eagles terminated his contract in part because they grew afraid of his alleged “gang ties,” then they did something worse. [Editor’s note: Jackson has agreed to terms with the Redskins.]

I look at those words—gang ties—and I think about all the players I’ve met in the NFL and all…

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Adam Silver to consider nixing sleeved jerseys with enough player opposition

Samuel:

LeBron James can be our savior and nix the sleeves forever!

Originally posted on The Point Forward - SI.com:

LeBron James has been among the more vocal critics of the NBA's sleeved jerseys. (FREDERIC J. BROWN AFP/Getty Images)

LeBron James has been among the more vocal critics of the NBA’s sleeved jerseys. (Frederic J. Brown/Getty Images)

The NBA’s sleeved jerseys have been deemed “ugly” by Golden State’s Stephen Curry, compared to high school wrestling uniforms by Mavs owner Mark Cuban, blamed for shooting struggles by Miami’s LeBron James and Memphis’ Beno Udrih, and said to make players look like “Beach Police” by Cleveland’s Jarrett Jack. If that kind of commotion continues, according to Howard Beck of Bleacher Report, those awkward, tight-fitting jerseys could soon be set aside from the league’s big-picture marketing plans.

Such a decision would ultimately come down to recently anointed NBA commissioner Adam Silver, who in conversation with Beck noted the possibility of a shift away from sleeves if player resistance continues:

Commissioner Adam Silver told Bleacher Report he intends to revisit the issue after the season. He plans to meet with…

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LeBron James May Have To Ditch Black Mask Due to NBA Crackdown

LeBron James May Have To Ditch Black Mask Due to NBA Crackdown

Samuel:

This is what I was thinking would happen and now it has. LeBron was growing too strong and powerful with the black mask. Back to the clear one!

Originally posted on The Big Lead:

NBA: New York Knicks at Miami Heat

LeBron may have to save the black mask for exclusive key parties and outfoxing Mexican officials. The NBA has asked LeBron to switch to a clear mask before tonight’s game against Orlando. LeBron is appealing the decision, presumably on behalf of Heat fans who bought incredibly topical t-shirts. But, lest fans panic, ESPN reports he may find a way to “personalize” the clear one.

This is the NBA’s biggest fashion crackdown since the league banned playing in tights before the 2007 season. The league continues its battle against basketball’s drift toward Venetian Carnival.

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Paula Deen Compares Herself To “That Black Football Player” Michael Sam

Samuel:

Will she ever learn?

Originally posted on Joe Montana's Right Arm:

PaulaDeen

Embattled cooking impresario Paula Deen may have stepped in it again on Wednesday when she compared her plight to that of Michael Sam – the first openly gay player in NFL history.

Deen, whose career took a rapid nosedive after revealing she used the N-word during her lifetime, is still trying to repair her image after the transgression.

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