Category Archives: Cleveland Indians

Holland offers valuable insight and experience to share with teammates

“You gotta keep it loose. We’re out there grinding every day,” Holland said. “We’re not trying to tank or play badly or anything like that — we’re giving it everything we’ve got. The main thing is to keep the right mindset.”

HollandWWEbelt-CWS-071917.jpgThe WWE championship belt Derek Holland bestows to the Player of the Game after each White Sox win. (Photo courtesy of the White Sox)

That mindset is supported through practices like the sharing of the belt along with the seemingly trivial silliness of something like a Batman mask — the mask was passed on to Todd Frazier’s son in the locker room after the game — and these practices are thanks in great part to Holland’s passion for WWE.

The first in-person experience for Holland at a WWE event came in Dallas, at “Hell in the Cell,” a yearly showdown that started in 2009. Holland was hooked. He’s attended more than half a dozen live events in the years since, most recently sitting ringside at “Monday Night RAW” and “Elimination Chamber” held in Phoenix just before spring training this year.

Given his years with the Rangers, Holland offers valuable insight and experience to share with teammates, but probably none more so than the value of appreciating the pure joy of fandom and the levity it brings to one’s own profession.

There won’t be much hardware coming to the White Sox this season, but they’ll take those belts of honor — both large and small.

The White Sox have not had as many opportunities to vote on who gets the belt, but on that particular night, a walk-off single from Jose Abreu secured a win over the Yankees, and the belt moved from Kahnle’s locker to Abreu’s.broncos_123

the Falcons will need another pass rusher to step up or it could be a long day for the Atlanta defense.

Cannon will be tasked with protecting Brady’s right side on Sunday. Patriots offensive line coach Dante Scarnecchia said Cannon, who struggled in 2015, has “progressed and became more confident” in each game this season.

Even if Beasley has his way with Cannon, the Falcons will need another pass rusher to step up or it could be a long day for the Atlanta defense.

“It’s so important that we get to him, even if we get him off the spot,” Beasley said. “Tom Brady doesn’t get knocked down that much so put pressure in his face and get him off his spot and get him kind of frustrated will definitely help us at least try to come out with the win.”

At some point, Revis snatched the cellphone away and attempted to delete the video. Another 21-year-old male from Ross Township attempted to help the 22-year-old retrieve the cellphone. Revis then tossed the phone onto the roadway. A verbal argument followed. A male came to assist Revis. Both the 22-year-old and the 21-year-old state they were punched then remember waking up to talk to police.
Officers responding to a call about the fight found the two men knocked out on the ground.

Witnesses told police they were unconscious about 10 minutes. It was not clear whether they suffered further injury.

Upon viewing cell phone video of the incident, police confirmed Revis’ identity.

Jones gave a conflicting account of the incident. In a statement, Jones said Revis was “assaulted by a group of five people” and fled the scene because he “feared for his safety and eventually went to get medical treatment.” The extent of Revis’ injuries was not made clear.

“He was not the aggressor that night,” Jones said. “He was 1,000 percent the victim.”

Revis, who played collegiately at the University of Pittsburgh, was home for the weekend visiting family and friends, Jones said.

Jones called on police to release cell phone footage to the public. A department spokesperson said they will not oblige. seahawks_031

NFL Draft 2017: After trading down, Browns nab Michigan’s Jabrill Peppers at No. 25

The Browns didn’t get a quarterback in the first round, but they did get the player who might be the best athlete in the class.

After trading down from the No. 12 spot, the Browns selected Michigan safety Jabrill Peppers with the 25th overall pick in the 2017 NFL Draft.

Peppers tested positive for a dilute sample at the NFL Combine in March and could be subject to NFL discipline before he can make his regular-season debut if the league deems the positive result a violation of the NFL’s policy against drugs.

Buoniconti detailed how he estimated he took 520,000 hits to the head and that MRI tests over the past two years have revealed brain shrinkage and other brain abnormalities.

“I feel lost,” he said. “I feel like a child.”

It’s a far cry from the former life of the Dolphins co-captain, a sturdy linebacker who led Miami to three Super Bowls in a row. He was an eight-time Pro Bowler, a two-time Super Bowl champion and capped off his successful NFL career with a stint in broadcasting and business.

But his world changed when his son, Marc, dislocated his neck playing college football at The Citadel in 1985. He was paralyzed from the neck down, and Buoniconti felt that God was punishing him.

However, he became a pillar for the Miami Project to Cure Paralysis, helping raise millions of dollars for the cause. At that time he was feeling great. But over the past two years he has felt the effects of constantly being hit in the head.

“I didn’t have any idea the price would be this debilitating,” Buoniconti said. “Had I known, would I have played? I had no alternative; there was no other way for me to get a college education.

“Football kept rewarding me — I can’t deny that. But I’m paying the price. Everybody pays the piper.”

The Raptors are going to the NBA Finals and 20 other bold playoff predictions

The 2017 NBA Playoffs begin Saturday. They will end sometime in the distant future. While it is impossible to foretell what magic the playoffs will bring, let’s try anyway. (It worked out pretty well when I picked a Cavaliers title win a year ago!)

Ohio State coach Urban Meyer introduced Belichick and talked about a conversation the two had backstage.

“(Belichick) said, ‘At this point in my career I want to coach guys I like. I want to coach guys I want to be around. I won’t coach anybody else,'” Meyer said.

The high school and college coaches in attendance recorded every minute of Belichick’s 45-minute speech on their cell phones and video cameras; looking for the secret to Belichick’s success. That success is easy to see on the field: Belichick followed up an incredible 34-28 comeback victory over the Falcons in Super Bowl 51 by giving Tom Brady another weapon in acquiring receiver Brandin Cooks from the Saints. Yet Belichick lit up when talking about the off-the-field-process.

This is where Belichick appears comfortable. Dare we say Belichick, who turns 65 next week, is having fun? If you want to see that side, then find him at one of these coaching clinics. He built his speech around his No. 1 philosophy with players and coaches.

At that point, Chad was just getting his bearings as the starting quarterback, after leaving Clemson and spending a year in the Last Chance U junior college. Kelly’s issues before Ole Miss weren’t about talent, but about behavior.

Asante Samuel’s son is a top recruit, and he just picked FSU

Asante Samuel patrolled NFL defensive backfields from 2003 to 2013, winning Super Bowls in his first two seasons with the Patriots. He intercepted 51 passes in 157 games, made four Pro Bowls, and was a first-team All-Pro at cornerback in 2007.

Maybe this’ll make you feel old: Asante Samuel Jr. is now an elite cornerback recruit, and he verbally committed to Florida State on Thursday.

Samuel Jr. is a much more heralded recruit than his 36-year-old father was before playing three seasons at UCF. Samuel Jr. had offers from dozens of college teams, including almost all of the nation’s best. He picked FSU over Miami, Alabama, and scores of others.

Samuel plays his high school football in Florida, at Fort Lauderdale powerhouse St. Thomas Aquinas. He can’t officially sign with the Seminoles until the winter, but barring a decommitment, he’ll bring his considerable talent to the Noles’ secondary.

At 5 ft 9.5” 166 pounds (measured at the Nike camp in Miami), Samuel Jr. isn’t the biggest CB in the world, but he is very talented. Florida State is extremely picky about cornerback height, and is rarely willing to take a corner who lacks elite length. But occasional exceptions have been made for special recruits like Greg Reid, Lamarcus Joyner, and Levonta Taylor.

As the son of former All-Pro cornerback and a St. Thomas Aquinas product, his technique is near flawless, effortlessly changing direction to mirror receivers. He’s very good in off-coverage; recognizing what routes are in front of him and driving on the ball to make a play. Lightning quick with exceptional feet and hips, Samuel Jr. would be a welcome addition to any secondary.

Samuel is the class of 2018’s No. 14 cornerback and No. 114 player overall, according to the 247Sports Composite. He’s been on the national recruiting radar for a couple of years now, and his profile has only grown throughout his junior year.

Rams exercise fifth-year option on DT Aaron Donald

The Rams became the first team to officially exercise their option Wednesday when they signed defensive tackle Aaron Donald for the fifth year of his rookie contract, according to ESPN.

Donald will make $6.89 million in 2018. New England sent Minnesota the 29th pick in the 2013 NFL draft, where the Vikings took All-Pro kick returner Cordarrelle Patterson. In exchange, they received four selections: Jamie Collins, Logan Ryan, Josh Boyce, and a seventh-rounder who would later be packaged with Jeff Demps in exchange for LeGarrette Blount. Everyone but Boyce would go on to be a key contributor to a Super Bowl winning team — in Ryan and Blount’s cases, twice.

It was an easy decision for the Rams considering Donald has become one of the most dangerous interior defensive linemen in the game.

Selected with the No. 13 overall pick in 2014, Donald has 28 sacks through three years and has never missed a game. Donald will make $1.8 million next season before the pay raise in 2018.

Donald, who has played in a 4-3 formation in each of his three seasons, will have to adjust to new defensive coordinator Wade Phillips’ 3-4 system this season.

Leonard Floyd looks like an exciting young player for Chicago, but the Bears need to keep adding more defensive pieces to build around. Defensive back may be the bigger need, but there are plenty of positions Chicago has to address, and Thomas is the best player on the board.

The 2017 Final Four has star power even without ‘one-and-dones’

Last the fall, the 2017-17 college basketball season was predicted and dubbed by many to be “the year of the freshman.” The title was understandable given the strength of the 2017 recruiting class, and in a lot of ways it held up over the succeeding five months.

The 2017 NBA draft has fans of the professional game across the country buzzing already about it being potentially the most loaded draft in a decade. The reason is the youngsters.

Players like Howard and Trubisky going in the top six is good news for the Chargers. That means Hooker or Adams should fall to the seventh pick. I like either for the Chargers, but with Hooker gone, Adams is the pick. He can come down and work near the line of scrimmage and has enough range to drop.

It must be confusing for casual NBA fans to look at NBA mock drafts and see De’Aaron Fox as the third or fourth point guard off the board. Two of the guys often ahead of him — Markelle Fultz and Dennis Smith Jr. — didn’t even make the tournament, and nearly everyone watched Fox cut apart Lonzo Ball and UCLA for 39 points in the Sweet 16.

Fox saved his best basketball for last, and his averages in the NCAA and SEC tournaments paint an impressive picture.

The Arizona Cardinals had won two in a row and were facing the 1-8 Jacksonville Jaguars without Luke Joekel

‘I don’t know why you can’t take an umbrella into the stadium, but you can take loaded guns,’ he said.

At his news conference, Hutchinson said, ‘A bad guy could get a gun into Razorback Stadium now. Under this current law, if you have got the enhanced training, then you would be able to go into that facility.’

Arkansas isn’t the first state to discuss guns in stadiums. Washington recently had a similar proposed bill that doesn’t seem to be going anywhere, several Alabama schools revised their policies to maintain campus gun bans after a state public-places law passed, Ohio State bans firearms in its stadium despite a state law that allows them, FSU’s been sued for requiring guns to remain locked in cars, and the NFL’s blanket gun ban has so far only been surpassed by a Texas state law allowing off-duty law enforcement to carry.

The Arizona Cardinals had won two in a row and were facing the 1-8 Jacksonville Jaguars without Luke Joekel, Blaine Gabbert, Justin Blackmon, Paul Posluzny and Will Rackley. Jacksonville was last in rushing defense and scoring offense. They hadn’t scored a touchdown at home all season. They deserved their last place ranking and it looked to be an easy victory for Arizona.

But then they played the game.

The Cardinals overcame a 14 point first period from the home team and Carson Palmer had over 400 yards (30-42 419 yards, 2TDs) and Micheal Floyd (coming in with a sprained shoulder) a 91-yard touchdown with Arizona, making second-half adjustments again, defeated the Jaguars 27-14 on Sunday.

The Jaguars will travel to Houston to face the Texans in Week 12, while the Cardinals will host the Colts.nike_colts_1462

Oakland will always be a part of the Raiders’ DNA.

The Bills have ended their three-game losing streak with a win over the Jets. Buffalo dominated New York and ended with an impressive 37-14 victory at home. The Jets continued their up-and-down ways with a shaky performance by rookie quarterback Geno Smith, who has struggled to maintain momentum throughout the entire season.

Buffalo’s rookie quarterback, E.J. Manuel, had a great game with two touchdowns and no interceptions. His performance was important, as the Bills running game failed to make any ground. The Jets did get 98 yards on the ground by Chris Ivory, but were unable to sustain his success while down by double-digits late in the game.

Matt Warren of Buffalo Rumblings believes the Bills coordinators deserve a lot of credit:

The Raiders left, they returned, and now they bolt again. See ya, Oakland. It’s a long goodbye. Davis said his team will play there this season and next season and maybe even one more after that.

Mark Davis said that no matter what, Oakland will always be a part of the Raiders’ DNA.

That’s cheeky. Blocked from Los Angeles, he spun the wheel, it landed Vegas and he’ll brazenly take a piece of Oakland with him.

Pryor looked on his way to putting the stigma of the number two well in the past

Sunday night was the third 4th quarter comeback of the season for Luck, and the seventh of his already brilliant young career. He’s also logged ten game-winning drives, the most by any quarterback in the entire league over a two-year stretch. To say Luck is “clutch” is like saying fire kinda burns a little. Right now, Luck defines clutch in the modern NFL. No one is performing better in the big moments than No. 12 for the Colts.

Over weeks 3-5 of this season, Pryor looked on his way to putting the stigma of the number two well in the past. He showed great progress in his pocket passing, and showed enough flashes to help lead the Raiders to a win over the Chargers in week 5. But since then, he has had numbers that the Raiders have not seen since the former number two took the field.

Over the past four games, Terrelle Pryor has had a passer rating of 42.0 (45.7, 25.7, 55.7, and 40.9) with 1 passing touchdown to 8 interceptions. The last quarterback to have a four-game stretch that bad was JaMarcus Russell who had a passer rating of 41.2 (47.6, 46.0, 22.6, and 48.5) over the first four games of the 2009 season.

During those four games, Russell threw for just one touchdown to four interceptions. That’s half the interceptions Pryor has had over these past four games. And like Pryor’s last four games, the Raiders actually won one of those games as well — 13-10 win over the Chiefs.

Not only is that the worst passer rating over four games since Russell, those two instances were the only ones in nearly 50 years in which a Raiders quarterback had a passer rating that low over a four-game stretch.

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