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#1 2018-07-14 05:47:37

lw789
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eated a great opportunity." Defoe, w

CLEARWATER, Florida – J.A. Happ got the start in the Blue Jays rain-shortened, Grapefruit League opener against the Phillies but it was Todd Redmond who left an early impression on his manager. "Redmonds like anybody else, hes going to get hit every now and then but all weve ever seen out of him is good pitching and he gets guys out," said John Gibbons. "Hes pretty polished." The 29-year-old pitched two clean innings, the second and third, striking out a batter over 22 pitches. He got the win, for what thats worth on February 26, in a 4-3 game called midway through the seventh. Redmond is among more than a half-dozen pitchers in contention for the last starting rotation spot. While not much can be made of one outing, Redmonds performance resonated following a comment Gibbons made before the game. "Usually what happens, when theres a spot open, the guy that takes it, some of those guys have those springs where theyre good all spring and theres no doubt about it ... a lot of times that guy from day one, man, hes standing out and theres no hiccups." All Redmonds ever wanted is an opportunity. Here it is, less than three months before hell turn 29. Think hes overwhelmed? Redmonds been around too long – eight minor league cities over nine seasons – to get rattled by the best chance hes had to crack an opening day roster. "Im an easy-going guy," said Redmond. "Just give me the ball, Ill go out there and pitch. Same thing as I do every day. I pitch." Redmond made 17 appearances for the Blue Jays last season, 14 of them starts. Hed only made one previous appearance in the majors, a start for the Reds in 2012 that didnt go well. Familiarity breeds a sense of comfort. "I have a little more confidence coming into camp. Of my stuff, not of me, just of my stuff. More trusting of my ability," he said. As a starter last season, Redmond slowly earned Gibbons trust, which allowed Redmond to pitch deeper into games. If hes going to succeed at the major league level, however, Redmond will have to vastly improve his numbers facing hitters for a second and third time through the order. Batters have a .627 on-base plus slugging percentage against Redmond the first time through. Redmonds OPS against spikes to .939 when the lineup turns over and .914 the third time around. He insists durability isnt an issue. "My entire career, if you look at my minor league side of it, I dont think Ive ever thrown under 160 innings a year," said Redmond. "The workload. Thats one thing I take pride in is being able to go out there every fifth day and take the ball." Redmonds almost right. In the seven seasons between 2007 and 2012, he logged at least 160 innings five times and never through less than 145 innings. Having worked a modified heavy ball program this offseason, he would typically stretch with the one-pound or two-pound weighted ball prior to throwing, Redmond says his should feels strong as he makes the push for a job in the rotation. "Hes been a good pitcher in the minor leagues," said Gibbons. "Every year hes pretty steady and he never really had that opportunity until he came here last year. If this is his year he makes it and he goes on to have a good year, hell be a big league player and I dont think there will be any looking back." DRABEK UNHAPPY WITH PERFORMANCE Kyle Drabek was visibly upset with his first spring performance, a line that looked like this: 1.2IP/1ER/1H/3BB/1K. In his only full inning of work, Drabek threw 11 pitches but only four for strikes. A candidate for that final rotation spot, he was most bothered by the lack of command. "Ive had it so good in all the bullpens," said Drabek. "Its just frustrating for me to kind of fall back into being wild a little bit. I know what I can do and thats not me." "Kyles whole thing, get it into the zone and hes fine," said Gibbons. "Hes had a long layoff through the surgery. He pitched some last year but in a lot of ways, hes been out for so long it may be something that he can build back into." The 26-year-old has a history of control problems. Hes averaged 5.8 walks per nine innings over 169 1/3 big league innings. Returning from Tommy John elbow ligament replacement surgery last season, Drabek vastly improved his walk rate, issuing just six bases on balls over 43 innings. BAUTISTA IMPRESSIVE It took Jose Bautista all of three pitches to appear in midseason form. He smacked a 2-0, Roberto Hernandez fastball out of the park, literally. The drive to left field cleared the Phillies bullpen, the walkway behind the bullpen and the fence beyond the walkway. "I dont know, for whatever reason, I feel like Im seeing (the ball) better," said Bautista. "Theres nothing that I could have done different. Im not going to go to play winter ball right now. Its kind of odd because I havent played since August. But Im not complaining." CABRERA LIKELY TO HIT SECOND Its not even March, everyone is healthy, and manager John Gibbons is able to envision putting together a full lineup, something he wasnt able to do all of last season. Jose Reyes will lead off and, as the plan was at this time last year, Melky Cabrera has the inside track to bat behind him. "The only real downfall is he does hit a lot of ground balls but you look at what hes done the last few years, take away last year, and hes been one of the better hitters in baseball," said Gibbons. "We like guys there that can get a lot of hits. Hes a switch-hitter, he can manipulate the bat a little bit, he knows how to do those things. Ideally, if hes the player we expect him to be, than hed be a good guy for that spot." One thing Cabrera doesnt do often is walk, an ideal trait of a two-hole hitter and something that would get him on base more often ahead of sluggers Jose Bautista and Edwin Encarnacion. After walking 56 times in 2006, his first full year in the big leagues, Cabrera hasnt had more than 43 bases on balls in a season. A HEALTHY PERSPECTIVE Nobody wants to read about or hear about injury as an excuse for the Jays disappointing 2013 year. But a little perspective never hurt anyone, either. Last season, manager John Gibbons had these six players – Jose Reyes, Melky Cabrera, Jose Bautista, Edwin Encarnacion, Colby Rasmus and Brett Lawrie – in the lineup at the same time on only eight occasions all year. It happened over an 11-day period, starting on July 21 and ending on August 1. Seattle Mariners Jerseys . -- Canadian ski cross star Marielle Thompson accomplished two goals in one race Saturday. Edgar Martinez Jersey .Two San Francisco radio stations say they wont play the song during the duration of the World Series. A Kansas City, Missouri, station responded with plans to play the Grammy-winning track every hour from 7 a. http://www.authenticmarinersproshop.com … rs-jersey/. The Hockey Canada Foundation is donating $50,000, with Hockey Quebec contributing $15,000. Hockey Canada also announced it will hold a skills camp for all levels of minor hockey in Lac-Mégantic during the 2013-14 season. Representatives from Hockey Canada, the Hockey Canada Foundation and Hockey Quebec were on hand Tuesday night at a meeting of the AHM de Lac-Mégantic to make the announcement and presentation. Dee Gordon Jersey . The Swede became the first golfer to win the PGA Tours FedEx Cup and European Tours Race to Dubai in the same season. "It is still taking a little time to sink in what Ive achieved this week as was the case when I won the FedEx Cup but then it just kept getting better and better as the days went on and I am sure this will be the same," he said. Jean Segura Mariners Jersey . Salah, who scored against Chelsea in two Champions League group matches this season, is Jose Mourinhos third significant recruit in the January transfer window after Nemanja Matic and Bertrand Traore.Toronto FC officially unveiled English international striker Jermain Defoe and U.S. international midfielder Michael Bradley as its latest designated players on Monday morning in front of a boisterous crowd of supporters. Defoe, a 31-year-old striker, comes over from Tottenham Hotspur on a transfer believed to be somewhere in the neighbourhood of $10.8 million to $14.4 milion and an average yearly salary of a reported $8.3 million. Bradley, 26, heads to Toronto from Roma for a reported fee of $10 million and a salary of $7.1 million. "To acquire a star midfielder like Michael Bradley, seen by many as the top American player in the world, alongside Jermain Defoe, makes this a groundbreaking day for Toronto FC and for Major League Soccer," said Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment president and CEO Tim Leiweke of the clubs signings. A visibly emotional Leiweke said that the investment came down to one question that the team had to ask. "Why cant we be great?" he added. "We didnt win anything today, but we created a great opportunity." Defoe, who will return to Spurs on loan until Feb. 28, spoke highly of the reception hes received so far in Toronto and spoke of his desire to hit the ground running. "I feel at home already," he said. "As players, all you want to do is put your boots on, get out there and let your football do the talking...I feel blessed and honoured and Im looking forward to it so much." Assked if a place on Englands 2014 World Cup squad weighed in on his decision to come to North America, Defoe admitted that playing time was his primary concern.dddddddddddd "Its important to be playing," he explained. "To get into a World Cup or European Cup squad, its based on merit...if selected, Ill be ready." Bradley, whose unveiling was not previously advertised by the club, returns to MLS for the first time since 2005. "I have never been more excited, and more motivated, for any challenge in my career," he said. "What theyre trying to build here in really special, something really unique and different from anywhere else in MLS and North American soccer." The team also announced that working agreements were in place with both Spurs and Roma that would result in both friendlies being played in Toronto and a player exchange with Roma that will result in Toronto FC players training with Roma. With Defoe and Bradley in the fold, Toronto FCs number of designated players stands at four - one more than the league-allowed three. With new Brazilian striker Gilberto signed in the fall, Argentinian midfielder Matias Laba is expected to be the odd man out. Toronto general manager Tim Bezbatchenko confirmed that Laba is still with the club and that a final roster did not have to be submitted until the middle of March. "Well be working through the next steps over the next month and a half," he said. NFL Jerseys From China Wholesale NFL Jerseys Discount Jerseys Cheap Jerseys Wholesale Jerseys Jerseys NFL China NFL Jerseys Wholesale ' ' '

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