boss Pep Guardiola launched a defence of midfield

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Andy Pettitte held the Nationals to two runs (oneterms with Chelsea.Luiz says he is close to agreeing a new contract with the club.Asked if he will be at Chelsea next season, Luiz said: “Yes I think so. Sooneverybody is going to know. It will be before the Europa League final, in fivedays.”I love t earned) on five hits and no walks Friday. He struck out six.

Pettitte owns a 3.52 ERA in 15.1 ulas insists Moussa Dembele will not leave this month.In France, it’s been claimed Manchester United have made an offer for the striker in the last 24 hours.But Aulas told RMC: “Moussa hiGraham Potter.The Seagulls appointed Potter as their new boss in the summer and have since looked to implement a new identity, which has yielded a victory over Watford and a home draw against West Ham so far this season.”I think against a little bit mself is not to my knowledge trying (for a departure). “Whateveinnings this spring with 14 strikeouts against four walks. Pettitte only appeared in three major league games this spring, but if his last tuneup is any indication, he’s ready for the regular season. He’s slated to be the ‘ third starter behind CC Sabathia and Hiroki Kuroda.

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has not been the subject of any formal offers – y

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To be honest, I don’t want any of the ‘ bullpen committemor Benfica players as they were thumped 4-1 in their UEFA Youth League clash.Elliott squared up to giant Benfica keeper Leo Kokubu as nine-man Liverpool crashed out of the Uefa Youth League.And he showed the passion that has excited Liverpool fans by si has praised the leadership of senior players at the club.Tomori is one of several youngsters who is settling into the Chelsea side after making the step up from youth level and spells out on loan.He credits his manager Frank Lampard for aiding te because I think just about all of them are capable of handling ninth-inning duties.

But I understand in deeper leagues you might want to take a flier on one just in case you get lucky and land the one who gets the lion’s share of the save opportunities. In that case, I’m going with over Phil Coke, Al Alburquerque, Octavio Dotel and Brayan Villarreal just because I think he’d be making a natural transition from the setup role and has long had the stuff to close.

And because I don’t think Phil Coke wouldn’t hold up in the role even if ster United executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward has stepped up his pursuit for a new director of football.Woodward has been looking to create the position for some time, but put his plans on hold over the summer.The Mirror says he has now started up he’s manager Jim Leyland’s first choice.

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tball Awards on Sunday night. Mbappe spoke of movi

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manager Ron Washington named left-handed pitcher as one of his two primary setup men to begin the yearth Crystal Palace.Now back with Malmo, the midfielder had a year away with Benfica, which sent him on-loan to Palace. However the Sw tenure with Burnley comes to an end.The 33-year-old only played 11 times this season. He had spent the past five seasons at the Turf Moor club.However, he will now move on to pastures new after his contract expires.Taylor, who took his place in the ede failed to make an impression in London.He told Fotbollskanalen: “It was an educational year. It’s not something I , according to the Dallas Morning News. Ross was in ty attacker Kevin de Bruyne says David Silva deserves his goal in victory over Aston Villa.The Belgian was awarded the goal, as his teasing cross seemed to evade everyone before bouncing into the back of the net – although there had been a suggestithe running for a rotation spot this spring before being shifted to the bullpen. Ross has allowed five earned runs in 18 1/3 innings of work, posting a 2.45 ERA and 1.47 WHIP.

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mits he turned down Manchester United last summer.

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infielder continued to hit in his bid to win a starting role, reaching base in all four plate appearances against the Giants Saturday, including hitting his first home run of the spring. He’s hitting .538 in 45 Cactus League plate appearances and has only struck out twice. The outstanding line could land him the starting job at second base.

“He’s certainly right in the middle of the mix,” manager Bob Melvin told .com. “He was always in there and probably came out of the pack a little bit, but he’s a guy that’s played for us beforeHarry Kane’s long-term injury is a heavy blow.He is ruled out until April wi preparing for a move to England.Allegri and Juve split after five years at the end of last season.Chi reports Allegri and his partner, TV presenter Ambra Angiolini, will be in London this summer and taking English classes while they are there.Allegrth a hamstring injury that requires surgery.England captain Kane has scored 27 goals iaken the lead through Cristiano Ronaldo only to fall apart in 10 minutes.Fabio Borini’s angled drive beat Wojciech Szczesny, then Giampaolo Pazzini converted a penalty for Leonardo Bonucci’s handball offence.”Evidently we have different performances n 31 appearances for club and country this season.”If I speak too much about Harry, I ge, comes to camp trying to win a job, and he’s doing everything he can to do that.

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ager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has explained allowing A

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Cubs shortstop left thred PSG striker Edinson Cavani this month.The Telegraph says United are weighing up the possibility of signing Cavani – but are wary of repeating the mistakes made with Alexis Sanchez.Cavani is out of contract at Paris-Saint Germain this summer and le game in the bottom of the fourth inning Tuesday against the Dodgers after pulling up lame running to first base. .com reports Castro has been diagnosed with left hamstring tightness. He is day to day. The Chicago Tribune reports Castro was trying to beat out an infield single when he grabbed his leg halfway down the line and began limping toward first base. Castro was removed from the game after being evaluated by the trainer. Castro was 1 for 3 with one run as the team’s DH. He is 3 for 7 (.429) with one double through three spring games. “I Southampton past Fulham in the Carabao Cup second-round.The 19-year-old tapped home the second senior goal of his career from Nathan Redmond’s low cross.Speaking after the game, Saint boss Ralph Hasenhuttl said:”I think in the first half we were a lt was a little bit tidfielder Claudio Marchisio has hit out at those whom burgled his home at gunpoint. Marchisio’s family home was targeted by armed robbers at their villa in Turin last night.He posted to social media:“If you enter a person’s home to rob them, you’re ght but not too bad,” Castro said. “I felt it when I touched the base. It scared me. I don’t want to be hurt. I feel too good this year.”

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must embrace the challenge ahead without Harry Ka

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Padres prospect had another impressive day at the plate in Tuesday’s Cacmpard has provided a positive update on the fitness of N’Golo Kante.World Cup winner Kante trained separatelyhim Diaz would be a welcome addition.Getafe president Angel TorBarcelona midfielder Carles Alena won’t rule out moving to Real Madrid.Alena signed for Real Betis last week on-loan to the end of this season.Asked about using Betis as a stepping stone to Madrid, Alena laughed: “In football there can be a lot goingres has confirmed they’ve made a loan offer for Brahim.”I can say that we are working on a situation, although I do not like talking about names because it is not good for the player or f from the Blues squad in Ireland last week, but will now integrate with his teammates in Japan.”N’Golo hopefully is going to integrate into ptus League game against the Reds. He came on in the eighth inning and launched a solo homer off for his third homer of the spring. Gyorko, who is competing for the starting job at second base, has gone 4 for 10 (.400) with nine RBI and a 1.300 slugging percentage through four games.

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Ruiz apologizes, and Manuel says ‘I trust him’

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(US Presswire)

CLEARWATER, Fla. — won’t serve his suspension until the season begins in April, but in a very real sense, his punishment for testing positive for amphetamines began this week.It began Wednesday, when Ruiz spoke publicly for the first time since Or it began Tuesday, when Ruiz arrived at camp and met with his manager.As uncomfortable as Ruiz looked for his seven minutes in front of the television cameras, the time he spent with Charlie Manuel may have been tougher.Tougher, but productive, because Manuel came away convinced that his catcher won’t become a repeat offender and will continue to be a top-level player.”I trust him,” Manuel said. “I know him, and therefore I trust him. I got on him [Tuesday]. I got on him good. The things he said, I trust him. I don’t think it’ll be a problem at all.”I don’t think he’ll ever do it again, that’s what I think.”Ruiz admitted Wednesday that he had taken Adderall, a drug that players are only allowed to take with a medical exter Milan.Gotti worked with Giroud at Chelsea and rates the Frenchman highly.He told TMW: “Giroud would have been perfect and succeeded with Inter from the beginning. “Giroud at Lazio would have been an alternative of great impact, because he has veremption (which Ruiz didn’t have). He admitted that he had failed two tests last season, although he wouldn’t answer any questions about why he took the drug, why he hadn’t gotten an exemption or whether he would try to get one now.”I want to put that behind mnside the current squad.Leicester are going well, sitting third after their 5-0 thrashing of Newcastle United.“We’re very confident, especially off the back of 5-0 win against Newcastle and the five great goals that we scored,” Chilwell told the Foe,” Ruiz said, after apologizing to fans and teammates. “I’m going to do my best. I made a mistake and I paid.”Major League Baseball has rules. When you make a mistake, you have to pay.”The Phillies will have to pay, too. Manuel agreed with the suggestion that Ruiz may have been the Phillies’ most valuable player last year.”Yeah, I was upset when I heard about [the suspension], Manuel said. “Chooch is a big part of our team. He’s developed into one of the best catchers in baseball. [Yadier] Molina is good, but Chooch is right there with him.”Manuel said that Ruiz seemed to be “really hurt” when the two spoke. There was no doubt that Ruiz looked and sounded emotional in his public statements Wednesday.”We’re disappointed,” general manager Ruben Amaro said. “He made a mistake. He’s going to pay for it. We’ll pay for it.”Manuel said he expects to be the Phillies’ main catcher while Ruiz serves his suspension. Ruiz is permitted to goor a spell on the sidelines with a hip injury. The club have not provided a timeline for Maguire’s return. Maguire missed Tuesday’s Carabao Cup semi-final first leg loss to Manchester City.Quizzed on how long Maguire would be out for, manager Ole Gun through spring training as usual, but will miss the first 25 games of the season.

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Pirates, Francisco Liriano revise contract

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(Getty Images)

Lefty will, as expected, be a Pittsburgh Pirate, but he’ll be a Pirate under slightly different parameters.

CBSSports.com’s Jon Heyman originally reported that . However, before the deal coed to experience Manchester United’Pereira admits he was shocked by the extent of his knee injury upon first hearing the news.Pereira’s season is over after breaking down in victory over Aston Villa last week.He posted to social media: “I never thought that this could happen to me, bus away fans for the first time. The Red Devils travel to Molineux on Monday night hoping to make it two from two this season after beating Chelsea last Sunday.”The crowd was amazing during the Chelsea game and I’ve uld be finalized, Liriano broke his non-throwing arm, which prompted the to revisit the terms. Now, FOXSports.com’s Ken Rosenthal reports that . Sources tell Rosenthal that Liriano could still make $12.75 million over the life of the updated contract but that the veteran left-hander “will assume more risk under the revised terms.”

Heyman confirms Rosenthal’s report and adds that the new contract won’t be finalized until Liriano once again passes a physical.

The 29-year-old Liriano is coming off a season in which he posted a 5.34 ERA in a combined 156 2/3 innings for the Twins and . For his career, Liriano has a 4.40 ERA across s he won’t push to leave.Real Madrid and Manchester United have been linked with Dias this summer.”My head is not there [leaving Benfica]. I’m here pre-season, I don’t have to think about anything else,” Dias told A Bola.“It’s important to work on parts of seven major-league seasons.

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remen defender Milos Veljkovic is interesting Watf

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Yankees generae Perez.Newcastle are in limbo at the moment, unable to sort out new player contracts or go for Benitez’s targets with the manager yet tog Germany in Sunday’s final.Napoli midfielder Fabian Ruiz opened the scoring for Spain with a surging run and 25-yard strike from Mikel Oyarzabal’s pass.Dani Olmo doubled the lead with a clever chip after Alexander Nubel fumbled Ruiz’s shot before Na extend his deal which ends on June 30.But Benitez said: “Fight to keep him? Yeah, he is an important player fol manager Brian Cashman told ESPNNewYork.com on Thursday that the team sees as a utility player — at best — for 2013. Nunez was previously be after signing a new contract. The goalkeeper committed to the club for another four years on Monday.And Solskjaer was always confident the Spaniard would stay at Old Trafford.”Most of the time we get to keep the ones we want to keep,” said Solskjaerlieved to be in the mix for at-bats as the team’s designated hitter, but Cashman smacked that down with force, even suggesting Nunez might not make the major league roster. “If he makes our club, it will be at a utility role,” Cashman said. “He could be a starting shortstop at Triple-A. He could be helping us on the big-league level. It remains to be seen how our team shakes out and how he looks in the spring.”

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Phillies acquire Ben Revere from Twins for Vance Worley, Trevor May

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(Getty Images)

The have traded for Minnesota’s , thus giving them . Right-hander and minor league hurler Trevor May are headed to the  in return.

The 24-year-old Revere is coming off a 2012 season in which he batted .294/.333/.342 with six triples and 40 stolen bases in 124 games played. While he was a primary right fielder last season, he’s spent the majority of his career defensive innings in center.

As for Worley, 25, he boasts a career ERA of 3.50 across two seasons and change at the highest level. In 2012, however, his ERA was a les after their Champions League thriller at Chelsea.Veltman and Daley Blind were both sent off as Chelsea fought back from 4-1 down to draw 4-4.“A typical English evening, yes. I have never experienced anything like this. Ultimately 4-4, how this cams imperrard as his greatest teammate.The 35-year-old has retired from football after a coveted career with the Spain national team, Atletico Madrid, Liverpool, Chelsea and Sagan Tosu.At his exit press conference, a teary Torres said: “I always say the besressive 4.20. The 23-year-old May,meanwhile, posted a 4.87s with Nottingham Forest for midfielder Ben Osborn.United have been trying to land the 24-year old for the last fortnight, having had an original offer rising to £3m turned down by Forest, says Sky Sports. But it is understood the Blades made an imp ERA at Double-A last season. He was named the Phillies Minor League Pitcher of the Year in 2011, and .com presently has him listed as the second-ranked prospect in the Phillies’ system.

CBSSports.com’s Danny Knobler reports that Twins prospect is “in the mix” to replace Revere in the Minnesota outfield. Keep in mind the Twins also recently dealt center fielder to the Nationals.

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ked him.The Argentine has since been replaced by J

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USA TODAY’s Bob Nightengale confirmed on Friday that has agreed to a five-year, $80 million deal with the Detroit Tigers. Sanr Roma goalkeeper coach Guido Nanni has spoken of working with Wojciech Szczesny.The Pole has just signed a new contract with Juventus and worked with Nanni during a loan spell at Roma from AThe coach has penned a contract to 2022 worth €2m per season net.“This to decide the Champions League and Europa League will be one option put forward to ease fixture congestion caused by the coronavirus outbreak.European football’s governing body, Uefa, is hosting a video conference with major stakeholders on Tuesday.is an important moment for our club,” president Joey Saputo told the official Bologna website.“The deal with Sinisa is the basis for an ambitious technical project: we want rsenal.Nanni recalled to TMW: “It occurs to me the first dachez had a 3.86 ERA and .127 WHIP in 31 games last season, split between the Marlins and Tigers. He had received an offer from the Cubs on Thursday night, but went back to the Tigers, who finally snared Sanchez.

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Your 2012 AL Rookie of the Year (Non-Mike Trout division)

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(US Presswire)

It hardly seems fair. Any number of restaurant-quality rookie campaigns in the AL are going to be overlooked because decided to foil the suspense by authoring perhaps the greatest debut season in history. So let us give the distant remainder its due.

We’re asking this: In a lesser universe in which Trout did not exist (perish this thought), who should have been AL Rookie of the Year?

More on Rookie of the Year awardsAnalysisRelated linksMore coverage | | |

put ‘s in second place and also found ‘ , ‘s and Oakland’s worthy of mention.

Elsewhere, of the and of the A’s merit a nod, but both lacked the playing time necessary for serious consideration. On the pitching side, down-ballot worthies included  of the A’s, of the , of the , of the Rays, of the and Kelvin Herrera of the . They, however, don’t stack up to Darvish or Parker (and neither does Chen, for that matter).

So the merits of each serious contender not named Mike Trout:

Cespedes dgers is determined not to pay over the odds for Harry Maguire’s replacement.Manchester United are set to swell the Leicester boss’ transfer kitty by a cool £85million to sign the Enited hero Gary Neville for celebrating Liverpool blowing their unbeaten Premier League run.The Reds, who return to league action against Bournemouth at Anfield on Saturday lunchtime, saw their hopes of going the entirety of the 2019/20 Premier Leaguegland defender.Asked if he feared having to pay a premium now selli… He batted .292/.356/.505 and averaged an extra-base hit every 9.2 at-bats, and he did all that despite playing his home games in a pronounced pitcher’s park. On the bases, he swiped 16 bags in 20 attempts. His value in the field, though, is up for debate. The A’s liked him enough to allow him to log almost half his defensive innings in center, but the eye test suggests he’s not a plus glove at the position. He does, however, look much better in left, where he spent the narrow majority of his time. Ultimate Zone Rating doesn’t seem to think much of Cespedes’ defense, but those numbers are simply not to be trusted across single-year samples. While Cespedes’ reads off the bat leave a bit to be desired, he has more than enough speed to paper over that shortcoming. I’m comfortable calling him an asset in left.

Darvish … Like Cespedes, he toiled in a home yard that was hostile toward his interestsclosing on an agreement with Benfica midfielder Gedson Fernandes.The Benfica-star-Gedson-Fernandes-18-month-loan-deal.html” target=”_blank”>Daily Mail says Spurs are close to agreeing terms over an 18-month loan for Fernandes.The 21-year-old had been. In spite of that backdrop, Darvish posted a 116 ERA+ across 191 1/3 innings, ranked fifth in the AL in strikeouts and did a good job of keeping the ball in the park. Walks were an occasional problem, but he showed much better command after making some mechanical tweaks in early August. Darvish’s peripherals say his ERA should’ve been better than it was.

Parker … He notched a 114 ERA+ in 181 1/3 innings, so he falls just short of Darvish on those fronts. Parker’s K rate left a bit to be desired, but he made up for it by generally keeping the ball on the ground.

The call … Cespedes’ case would be air-tight if he hadn’t missed more than 30 games to various hand and leg injuries. Even so, Cespedes is the choice. The completeness of his game in tandem with the inherent advantage that position players have over pitchers when it comes to overall value makes Cespedes the 2012 AL Rookie of the Year.

Except for Mike Trout, of course.

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Rangers won’t negotiate with Josh Hamilton in exclusive window

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The will not negotiate with in the club’s exclusive window before Hamilton hits free agency, the club announced in a news conference on Tuesday. Since the 2010 season, teams have owned exclusive negotiating rights with departing free agents until five days after the end of the World Series. 

from CBSSports.com’s Jon Heyman suggested the Rangers are willing to bring Hamilton back on a new contract but aren’t likely to break the bank for him:

Rangers people see little point in making an ole Gunnar Solskjaer has ruled out the sale of Paul Pogba.Real Madrid coach Zinedine Zidane publicly flirted with Pogba earlier this year and, ahead of the European transfer deadline on Monday, said: “Until Monday everything can happen. One surprise, ffer they know he won’t accept now, say people familiar with their thinking. They’d be happy to sign him back, but apparently only at their price and contract length.

As such, the Rangers will allow Hamilton to test the market. Hamilton has said he will give the Rangers the chance to match any offer that he receives. However, these developments seem to indicate the Rangers will allow him to leave if another team deems him worthy of an elite (likely nine-figure) contract.

Hamilton was productive again this season, notching a 139 OPS+ in 148 games in earning his fifth straight All-Star Game appearance, but his final days of the 2012 season were unpleaseant. Helkeeper Bailey Peacock-Farrell from Leeds United for £2.5m.The Northern Ireland international has come in as a replacement for outgoing keeper Tom Heaton, who joined Premier League rivals Aston Villa on Thursday for £8m.The 22-year-old, who has sig dropped a crucial fly ball in the season finale against the Athletics that helped Oakland take the AL West title from Texas. And in last week’s wild-card game in Arlington against Baltimore, he went a brutal 0-for-4 to prompt boos from the home fans. Hamilton has also failed to play in 150 games in each of the last four seasons.

For more up-to-the-minute news and analysis on the latest rumors from bloggers Chris Cwik,s Heung-min Son.The South Korean star, who scored a sensational solo goal to help his side to a 5-0 win, was the subject of some racist discrimination.It appears the stewards immediately caught the incident and ejected the fan, per the Evening Standa Jack Moore and R.J. White, follow .

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NLDS Reds-Giants Game 3 preview: Ryan Vogelsong vs. Homer Bailey

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(AP)

The Giants’ season is on the right shoulder of , as the two teams will face off in Game 3 of the NLDS on Tuesday in with the Reds holding a 2-0 series lead.

According to Elias Sports Bureau, since the advent of the wild card, 90 percent of the teams that have taken a 2-0 lead in the division series have gone on to win (38 of 42). National League teams are a perfect 21-for-21 when going up 2-0 in the division series since the wild card was introduced in 1995. 

While there was plenty of talking coming into the series about the Reds’ struggling offense, it’s the Giants who haven’t been able to put up runs against the Reds, scoring a total of two runs in two games. is hitting just .143/.250/.222 in the first two games of the series, while neither Giants starter has gone past the fifth inning.

Game 3 will be Vogelsong (14-9, 3.37) for the Giants against the Reds’ (13-10, 3.68).

Bailey hasn’t liked pitching much at Great American Ball Park this season, going 4-8 with a 5.16 ERA in 17 starts at home and 9-2 with a 2.32 ERA in 16 starts away from home, including his no-hitter in inspiration from Chelsea icon Didier Drogba.The striker has confirmedtegen has cast doubt on the mentality inside the Barcelona dressing room.After their Champions League eliminations by Roma and Liverpool in consecutive seasons, Ter Stegen admits it could yet happen again.He told 11Freunde: “They cannot be clarified the promise of his 26 goals for Aston Villa last season last season by breaking his Premier League duck with four in the Blues’ first six games of the current campaign.Highly-rate . Of the 26 home runs he’s allowed, 21 have gone out at Great American Ball Park.

Bailey received a no decision in his first start of the season against the Giants, allowing three runs (two earned) on seven hits in 6 1/3 on April 26 at Great American Ball Park. In five career starts against San Francisco, he’s 1-0 with a 5.59 ERA.

No current Giant has hit a home run off of Bailey, and only and have extra-base hits off of Bailey, both with a double each. Arias has faced him just three times and has two hits. , a former Cub, is 4 for 14. In six career plate appearances against Bailey, is 0 for 5 with two strikeouts and a walk.

Vogelsong, 35, was 14-9 with a 3.37 ERA for the Giants this season. In two starts against the Reds, he gave up six earned runs over 13 innings. He did not have a decision in either start. 

The former Pirate has appeared in six games at Great American Ball Park in his career, starting two. He’s 1-0 with a 4.57 ERA at Cincinnati. Both of his starts have come as a Giant, earning a no decision in both and putting up a 5.25 ERA.

This season he’s pitched much better at home, putting up a 2.86 ERA at AT&T Park and 3.87 away. He actually gave up one more home run at home than on the road.

has faced Vogelsong hase option in any loan deal this summer.The Real Madrid man was resigned to going out for the season, as he was not in manager Zinedine Zidane’s plans.However, the 23-year-old sees his long term future at Real, which is why he did not want Arsenal omore than any other Red and has seven hits (six singles) in 15 at-bats. (4 for 10), (4 for 12) and (2 for 4) have all touched Vogelsong for home runs. Vogelson, though, has had his way (more or less) with . Votto has just one hit in six at-bats, striking out twice and walking three times. has struck out five times in 13 plate appearances against the Giatns starter.

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Orioles’ Nick Markakis out three more weeks

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(US Presswire)

Orioles outfielder will have two pins in his left thumb for at least another week, putting his availability for the postseasoameyang has thanked fans for their support after Thursday’s shock Europa League elimination by Olympiakos.The captain was left floored by their collapse at home.But Aubameyang posted: “I Woke up This Morning praying as usual and I thanks [sic] God n in doubt. Markakis hasn’t played since Sept. 8 after suffering a broken left thumb and was hoping to delighted with the form of summer addition Frenkie de Jong.De Jong was named Joan Gamper Trophy man of the match for the defeat of Arsenal, and the Dutchman has been impressing all of those who seen him this summer.”He’s curious and thoughtful and a gertures.The Swans are sitting second in the Championship despite losing manager Graham Potter, as well as star players Daniel James and Oli McBurnie.Grimes said: “I am always still talking to Dan and Oli and we are obviously so pleased with how they at the pins removed on Monday.

Instead, a hand specialist recommended to keep the pins in for another week, meaning it would be three weeks before he could return to the lineup.

“It was just crushed too bad in there and I had a lot of pieces here and there,” . “Probably on a clean break, they’ve probably come out today, but my situation is a little different.

“They want to keep it in another week and it would probably be in a splint for a week or two after that, so I’m probably still a good three weeks away at minimum.

Three weeks puts his return at Oct. 22, the day after Game Seven of the American League Championship Series.

Markakis is hitting .298/.363/.471 with 13 home runs this season, hitting .335/.390/.489 after the All-Star break.

Markakis was hit in the thumb by the ‘ in the Orioles victory on Sept. 8.

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