evy.Spurs have conceded 10 goals in heavy defeats

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Sometimes, I can get behind drafting a player I know I’m going to have to stash on the DL to begin the season, but I’m having a hard time doing it with . Unlike, say, Corey Hart, his injury doesn’t present him with a clear timetable and could impact his performance even after he returns.

He’s not even throwingtalks with Barcelona for Ivan Rakra Ferrer had held the position for the past two years. It’s the third time he’s left Betis – twice as coach.A rift between Serra Ferrer and the other vice president, José Miguel López Catalán, had become insurmountable. Their disagreement sparkeditic.Sport says United have approached Barca about a price for Croatia international and been informed they’re prepared to sell.However, Rakitic himself will need some persuading to leave Spain this summer.The 29 year off a mound yet, so I’m not holding my breath on him returning before May. And seeing as the shut has been delighted playing alongside Harry Maguire at the heart of Manchester United’s defence.The pair have been Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s first-choice centre-back pairing this season.Speaking from the club’s warm-weather camp in Marbella, Lindelof saihim down midway through last season with an injury he probably could have come back from, I’m thinking they have no interest in rushing him.

Napoli coach Carlo Ancelotti was pleased with vict

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told the San Francisco Chronicle on Wednesday that he has received offers to play this season but has yet to find the right fit. Theriot has been on each of therpool Echo says Moshiri has increased in stake in Everton to 77.2%.The Blues have today confirmed the majority shareholder has purchased more of the club.Moshiri initially boe contenders.Asked if United, currently 27 points behind runaway leaders Liverpool , can challenge for the title next season Solskjaer did not sound convinced it is a genuine prospect.“That’s the aim, onfidence of his players.Groves has said the club’s players have lost confidence in their manager given their summer arrivals have failed to impress and after their poor start to the season.“The thing with the Arsenal situation with Unai Emery is, of course,” said Solskjaer. “I’m not saying iught 49.9% of shares in February 2016 before upping that to 68.6% in Septeme previous two World Series winning clubs, the 2011 Cardinals and 2012 Giants, and batted .270 with 28 RBI and 13 stolen bases in 104 games last season.“I’ve had some stuff come up, no doubt. It’s not really exactly what I’m looking for playing-time-wise,” Theriot said. “That’s where we’re at right now. We’ll see what happens.”

he tactical battle is what motivates him every day

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Dodgers starting pitcher endured a rough outing in Saturday’s Cactus LeaBrighton midfielder Steven Alzate has made his international debut for Colombia.The 21-year-old has been a revelation for Albion this season.He came on as a substitute in their 1-0 friendly win over Peru in Miami.Alfredo Morelos scored the winner for Columbia in the 90th minute.gue contest against the Mariners. Harang, who made his second appearance in the spring, ran into the trouble in the second inning as he allowed a two-run single to . He allowed just two runs on six hits over three innings of work in a 3-2 victory. He also struck out two and walked two. “It was typical Aaron,” manager Don Mattingly said. “He knited.The Magpies have won six of their last seven Premier League home matches during a run that has lifted them comfortably clear of the relegation zone.But Van Dijk believes James Milner has emerged as a shock candidate for PSG.The Liverpool midfielder will be out of contract next month.According to Le Parisien, PSG believe 33-year-old Milner could add experience and versatility to their squad.It is unclear whether Milner or Liverpool want to end their four year association.Liverpool can approach the encounter with their confidence undiminished byind of bends but doesn’t [break]. He gets it out of the way and throws zeros. That’s how he was all last year. He knows who he is and what he’s doing. He keeps himself in the game.”

sed claims of being intimidated by Ajax ahead of t

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Marlins second baseman went 2-for-4 against the Yankees on Friday, upping his spring batting average to .526. Hoffenheim are ready to push through a deal for Brighton striker Jurgen Locadia.TSG are in the market for a late striker signing after losing Andrej Kramaric to injury and the rejection of Ajax’s Kasper Dolberg.Aas with Fikayo Tomori’s new deal.The defender recently committed his long-term future to the club by signing a new five-year contract.”He’s been playing fantastically well since I had him at Derby and then this season he’s shown it in the Premier LeaD says Hoffenheim are now seeking to close termhe again merits continued international recognition.”It (England call-up) is deserved. I think he has had a good start to the season,” Howe said.”I think with Callum we have just been focusing on his performances and making sure he delivers what we ns for Locadia.TSG coach Alfred Schreuder is driving the move for his fellow Dutchman.The Bundesliga club would favour a loan arrangement.He also has three RBI and five runs scored in seven games.

er Yannick Bolasie was satisfied with his Sporting

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Phillies outfielder continued his torrid spring pace on Wednesday, going 2-for-3 with a double andhas helped Algeria defeat Nigeria and book a place in the African Cup of Nations final.The Manchester City winger struck five minutes into injury-time with a precise and fierce set-piece intoy against Arsenal, despite being pushed to leave by Real coach Zinedine Zidane.Odriozola said, “Bale has always looked good to me. “They talk about him a lot, but he knows how to take it and he focuses on his day-to-day work. Today he scored a goal the top corner.Algerialing good after being diagnosed with coronavirus last week.The defender spoke to Juventus TV about having contracted the virus.“I’m fine, I’ve been pretty good. I haven’t had the symptoms you read about in the news,” Rugani said.“I was lucky desp opened the scoring when Nigeria def a run scored.

jaer reserved praise for midfielders Fred and Scot

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Mariners closer madestriker produced three assists for their 3-0 defeat of Southampton on Sunday.Klopp said, “Bobby is just exceptional, a very football smart person, I do not know a player like him, that is true.“But even a player like Bobby needs an address where his third straight scoreless appearance in Monday’s Cactreaking contract extension with Nike, according to the Daily Mail, reports, /.The US sportswear giant is facing competition to retain the Manchester City forward as one of its global ambassadors, with Sterling’s existing deal in its final year.Howeveus League game against the Rockies. He entered in the fifth and allowed one hit in the scoreless inning.lham wing-back Ryan Sessegnon retains hope of a move to Liverpool.Tottenham remain interested but Manchester United are the only club to have made initial contact with Fulham. However, Sessegnon’s ultimate dream is to join Liverpool.Sessegnon is a bo Wilhelmsen converted 29 of 34 save chances last season.

Mike Scioscia: Angels’ closer position wide open

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With all but certain to begin the season on the disabled list, manarton manager Marco Silva wants Richarlison and Yerry Mina to improve their English skills.The duo are important players for Silva, and he believes their inability to speak fluent English is impeding his team.Asked about Richarlison’s progress, Silva ger Mike Scioscia said , Alden Gonzalez of .com reported Wednesday.

Scioscia mentioned four relievers who could be in play for the role: , who racked up 23 saves ins urged Wilfried Zaha to join Arsenal.Both Everton and the Gunners failed with attempts to sign the Ivory Coast international over the summer.”If a player wants to go enough and is desperate enough to leave then it’s possibly not in your best interes the role last year, as well as , and . Frieri appears the most likely option given his success last season — he blew just three saves and posted a 2.32 ERA (163 ERA+). 

Downs also earned a shot at the closer role but doesn’t fit the typical closer mold. His fastball usually lives in the high 80s and he’s a lefty. Jepsen posted a sharp 3.02 ERA and offers a blazing (average velocity 96.6 MPH) fastball, but he has limited late-inning experience (three career saves). Burnett has the worst track record of the four, with a 3.58 career ERA and mediocre 4.15 career FIP.

For more up-to-the-minute news and analyss international future to China.Browning swapped Everton for Guangzhou Evergrande in February, but intends to swap a lot more too —starting with his citizenship.The defender was born in Liverpool and represented England at Under-17, U19 and U21 levis on the latest rumors from bloggers ,  and , follow .

g midfield talent is being linked with some of Eur

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Twins starting pitcher fired two scoreless iy. The Clarets had the best chance of the game when Jay Rodriguez’s shot hit the underside of the bar.The result means Mikel Arteta’s side remain in 10th on the Premier League table.Speaking after the game, Arteta said:”We have to improve quality-wisnning during Minnesota’s 5-4 win over Pittsburgh in a Grapefruit League matchup Monday. Worley, who was acquired in an offseason trade with Philadelphia for outfieldeChampionship side have been highly impressed with the 18-year-old midfielder who has recently broken into the first-team.Boss Frank Lampard had previously ruled out a summer loan switch for the youngster because he felt his development was better suir , gave up two hits and struck out one, far better than his previous start at Hammond Stadium. While pitching for the Phillies last March, he gave up 11 runs in an exhibition game against the Twins. “To me, it’s just about right now,” Worley said of the opportunity to be the staff ace. “If I don’t do that well, it doesn’t mgned by Mauricio Pochettino over the summer, Lo Celso is now hoping to win over Mourinho.He stated: “We all know that time is needed when a new coach arrives with a new staff. “It is necessary to assimilate new ideas and new methods. “The debut victoatter where I’m at in the rotation. It’s a matter of going out there and making sure everything’s working right. If I do that, everything will take care of itself.”

2013 Team Preview: Toronto Blue Jays

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| Blue Jays: | |

The enter the season in a quite different light than they have entered any season for the past decade-plus: They are in the spotlight. No team garnered as many headlines as the Blue Jays in the offseason, as they went out and added , , , , and more. Will this be enough to make a 73-89 team into a contender? Absolutely, because we must consider how much injuries ravaged the Jays last season. They used 12 different starting pitchers, was held to 92 games and was held to 125. Also, there is expected improvement from some younger players like Lawrie and , in addition to a bounce-back season from former ace . 

1. Jose Reyes, SS2. Melky Cabrera, LF3. Jose Bautista, RF4. , 1B5. Colby Rasmus, CF6. Brett Lawrie, 3B7. , DH 8. , C9. , 2B 

1. R.A. Dickey2. 3. Josh Johnson4. Mark Buehrle5. Ricky RomeroALT:  

Closer: Setup: , Lefty specialist:  

IF , OF , C

Remember when the ? Maybe not, since they have made two blockbuster trades since then, but Izturis could serve as a backup at second base, shortstop and third base while being fully capable of starting several times a week. He has a career .337 on-base percentage, good speed (17 steals in 19 attempts last season) and is a capable defender. That’s a pretty good player to have around as an insurance policy at three different positions, especially since the Blue Jays had such major injury woes last season. 

“A limited number Former Chelsea midfielder Steve Sidwell has revealed Didier Drogba was in tears by Jose Mourinho’s sacking.Sidwell recalls how none of the players agreed with a decision which destroyed the “family culture” in the Chelsea dressing room.”I’ve been at of saves caused Janssen’s breakthrough to go by the wayside last year. But while , and made history with the kind WHIPs they were putting up, Janssen’s 0.86 mark ranked fifth among closers with at least 50 innings. And it’s not like his 2.54 ERA or 9.5 strikeouts per nine innings were anything to sneeze at. So then … about those saves. Beginning 2013 as the team’s closer will help. He didn’t claim ninth-inning duties from an injured Sergio Santos until May last year, and by then, the Blue Jays starting rotation was so decimated by injuries that a closer was hardly necessary. They either outslugged the competition, or they lost. Obviously, that formula is destined to change this year with all the upgrades they made this offseason, particularly to their starting rotation. Add, say, 15 to last year’s save total, and you’ll see why Janssen is a bargain after the top 20 closers go off the board.” — Scott White []

I think it’s how well-rounded the offense is. There are speedy table-setter types in Reyes, Bonifacio and Izturis. There are two potential 40-homer power hitters in Encarnacion and Bautista. There’s the power-speed combo in Lawrie and a possible hit-machine in Cabrera. As long as the Jays stay healthy — which is a huge question after last season — they will be able to beat teams offensively in a number of ways. Teams this well-rounded are great bets to stave off extended team-wide slumps. 

The back end of the bullpen. Janssen has never been a full-time closer, Santos is coming off surgery and Delabar has had control issues at times. Overall, I don’t think this is a huge issue and the trio is more than capable enough to have a py Aston Villa following a training ground bust-up.The on-loan Chelsea man reportedly headbutted Villa teammate Jota, with his future at the club now being discussed.Phillips says he’s surprised about the conduct of his former Leicester teammate, but roductive season, but I had to name something here, and there really isn’t a glaring weakness on this ballclub. 

For the first time since 1993, the Blue Jays win the World Series. They definitely have enough talent, and this should be the ultimate goal for this club in 2013. 

There are obvious areas where the wheels could totally fall off here. Reyes, Johnson and Morrow are injury risks, to various degrees. Which Melky are the Jays gonna get? What if Encarnacion’s power surge last year was a fluke? What if Janssen spits the bit as closer and Santos can’t regain pre-injury form? What if Romero is just as bad as he was last season? What if Lawrie’s all-out style recklessy injures him? Rasmus and Lind are enigmas offensively as well. Dickey’s old and last season’s numbers are an outlier compared to the rest of his career. In the tough AL East, if everything that could possibly go wrong does, I could see the Blue Jays ending up in last place. 

Honestly, though, what are the odds that every single bad thing listed above happens and nothing good happens? Very, very low. There will be injuries, but every team deals with those. Dickey’s 2012 season came from out of nowhere because he started throwing his knuckler harder, not because he just started to get lucky out of the blue, and Encarnacion has always shown the ability to hit for big-time power when he’s in the lineup. 

It’s tough to predict how Cabrera, Rasmus and Lind will fare, but overall there is so much talent here that I don’t see a realistic scenario where they miss the playoffs. In fact, I predict they win the AL East for the first tining over a loan deal for Islam Slimani.Inter are turning to the Algeria international after being informed that Chelsea were removing Olivier Giroud from their transfer list.Slimani is currently on-loan with AS Monaco, but both parties are willing tme since …

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Indians sign pitcher Daisuke Matsuzaka to minor-league deal

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(US Presswire)

The have signed pitcher to a minor-league deal, according to CBSSports.com’s Jon Heyman. Matsuzaka can make up to $4 million. If he passes his pd United attacker Billy Sharp has issued a warning to Premier League heavyweights Chelsea.As the Blades picked up another win in the league, against Bournemouth, they moved themselves into fifth place.They are only two points away from Frank Lampard’hysical and makes the team, he will earn a base salary of $1.5 million, to Paul Hoynes of the Cleveland Plain Dealer. 

With the move, Matsuzaka will reunite with Terry Francona, his manager in Boston. The-32-year-old righty spent most of last season recovering from Tommy John surgery. He tossed 45 2/3 innings ws League qualification must be their target next season.Iwobi says they must do better next year if they are to play in Europe’s elite competition.He said, “Obviously we want to get back in to Champions League football.”We haven’t spoken about where ith the , with an 8.28 ERA and a City boss Pep Guardiola rejected the chance to sign Philippe Coutinho over the summer.Marca says the midfielder was told to pack his bags after Barcelona splashed £105m on Atletico Madrid’s Antoine Griezmann.And Catalan chiefs believed Guardiola was5.94 FIP. Matsuzaka still managed to strikeout hitters at an acceptable rate but gave up 11 home runs in 45 2/3 innings.

The Red Sox paid a $51.1 million posting fee to have exclusive negotiating rights with Matsuzaka in November of 2006. They eventually signed him to a six-year, $52 million deal. In those six seasons, Dice-K had a 4.52 ERA over 668 1/3 innings with the team. 

There’s a chance Matsuzaka plays a role with the Indians this season. The club’s rotation is considered a weak spot. and have been useful pitchers, but they are coming off terrible seasons.

has been a decent starter over his career but will be converting back to the role after a season in the bullpen.

, acquired during the offseason, was considered one of the best pitching prospects in baseball prior to last season and should get a shot in the rotation this year. The fifth spot will go to , or .

If Dice-K performs well during spring training, he could force his way onto the roster.

The Marlins and Padres were among the other teams that showed interest in Matsuzaka. 

For more up-to-the-minute news and analysis on the latest rumors from bloggers ,  and , follow.

argeting a run of games with Liverpool.The 26-year

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Astros outfielder ez told .com on Friday that while he has yet to starting swinging a bat again, he feels he’ll be ready when spring training rolls around. Martinez underwent surgery to remove the hook of the hamate bone in his left hand in September. “I really haven’t been able to swing that much yet, but I feel like it’s right there and really close,” he said. “I’m trying to rest it asos has blasted Barcelona captain Leo Messi after his weekend meltdown.Messi slammed the Copa America’s refereeing after Argentina failed to reach the final.”It’s frustrating to seker Leandro Trossard has revealed Arsenal and VfL Wolfsburg are going head-to-head for the youngster.Rated in the €20m class, Trossard has managed a stunning 22 goals so far this season.”There is still no agreement with any club. But I think that Ge a player of his quality, admired by all, say such things,” said Marqu much as I can now because I know when spring training starts, it’s going to be non-stop. I feel like I’ll be ready and it will be stalace.The manager is ready to talk about extending his stay at his “boyhood club”.The rejuvenated former England manager, 72, said: “I’m as fit as I have been for the last 20 years.”Hodgson took over at Selhurst Park in September 2017 after Frankrong enough for me to do what I have to do.”

Cool map: Where the ballparks are

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 comes this, an interactive Googlon Francis is desperate for his side to avoid relegation.But he wants to see them do it the right way, by finishing out the season.The Cherries currently in the drop zone, which means if the season ended today they would go down.But that is not how Fe map of every major-league, affiliated minor-league and independent-league ballpark in the United States and Canada. Alternative terminating mark for previous sentence: !

‘s performance against Manchester City on Sunday.A double from Sergio Aguero saw Pep Guardiola’s side seal a 3-1 victory against a valiant Cherries outfit.Speaking after the game, Howe said: “The lads left everything on the pitch, which was all I cou

First, regard the map itself, and, second, daydream about a paid sabbatical!

View in a larger map

That’s a lot of baseball-hosting facilities and a lot of implied playing of baseball.

On that topic, a desperate petition: Come back to us, baseball. Now, please.

For more baseball newsdelighted seeing Jack Bycroft involved with England Under-19s.Callum Slattery is also with England Under-20s this week.Hale told the club’s website: “Callum has shown a great attitude this season. We know what he’s capable of. He’s had that opportu, rumors and analysis, follow on Twitter, subscribe to the and . Also, individually interact with us on Twitter: , and .

Rumor roundtable: What happens to Jurickson Profar?

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(US Presswire)

With GM Jon Daniels saying to first base, it’s starting to look like prospect might begin next season in the minors. Is this the right move? Is he a candidate to be traded?

There’s nothing wrong with giving a soon-to-be 20-year-old another year in the minors, especially when he hasn’t even taken a swing in Triple-A. It helps that they don’t exactly need him in the big-league lineup right now. Profar’s play in Trwith the club to sort out Bukayo Saka’s contract situation.With 18 months remaining on his contract, Saka has become a target for Liverpool and Manchester United.On the prospect of Saka, who managed ten assists and three goals this season, penning a iple-A will likely dictate how early the Rangers go to him this season. In no way is he a trade candidate — if they haven’t dealt him for a guy like Justin Upton yet, on whom would they pull the trigger?

I can’t see it happening. However, Ian Kinsler’s play fell off last year, and he’s due quite a bit of money. I wonder if the Rangers could match up on a Kinsler trade with the Dodgers during the season, especially if they’re looking to add pitching. We know that Kinsler’s contract won’t faze the Dodgers’ pocketbook.

I agree with R.J. that he’s probably not going to be dealt. Every other team in the league knows the Rangers’ situation Cup fourth-round clash with Arsenal.Klopp is expected to ring the changes for the meeting at Anfield, with a number of young players likely to be a given a chance to impress.”Tonight we select a team to win,” Klopp wrote in the matchday programme. ” and has likely called asking if they would part with Profar. The fact that there’s been no indication that the Rangers are willing to deal him seems like he’s there to stay. Even if he begins the year in the minors, I don’t see him staying there all that long.

I don’t think is going to have a long leash, and if he gets off to a poor start, I could see the team shifting Kinsler to first to make room for Profar. Also, it’s not like is a beacon of health. If he goes down, they could get creative with the DH spot and bring Profar up. When prospect rankings come out, there’s a very good chance that Profar is going to be a top-five guy on that list, with a shot at being No. 1. I think he forces his way to the Rangers early this season and still has a chance to break camp with the big-league club. 

The “problem” we’re discussing here is just representative of what has kept the Rangers at or near the top of the American League the last four seasons. Thanks to their depth, any decision the Rangers make with Profar and Kinslive sporting director as soon as possible, according to the editor of the club’s fanzine United We Stand.Ed Woodward has expressed his desire to hire a former player to fulfil the role, while legendary manager Alex Ferguson wants to see Steve Walsh eer leaves them with great talent at the major-league level, a luxury most teams don’t have.

But I wouldn’t be surprised if we still see Kinsler dealt, either at the trade deadline this year or next offseason. He had by far his worst offensive season in 2012, hitting just .256/.326/.423 (95 OPS+), a level that works at second base but frankly doesn’t play in either left field or at first base. If Profar tears up Triple-A for the first two months of the season or so, the Rangers’ hand could be forced.

For more up-to-the-minute news and analysis on the latest rumors from bloggers Chris Cwik, Jack Moore and R.J. White, follow.

What can we expect from R.A. Dickey in 2013 and beyond?

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(Getty Images)

After days of speculation and negotiation, reigning NL Cy Young winner is . That, of course, raises the matter of what we can expect from Dickey moving forward.

The incovenient reality is that there’s never been a case quite like Dickey’s. He’s an artie Swede actually met with Bologna director Marco di Vaio in LA as he considered his options after coming off contract with the LA Galaxy.However, he eventually signed with AC Milan, where he has proved a revelation.Sabatini revealed: “He spoke with tsan of the most elusive, befuddling pitch in captivity, and he didn’t break out until his mid-30s. All of that makes projecting him outward an uncommon challenge. But try we must!

Dickey used his forkball as the foundation of what would become one of the best knuckleballs ever seen. The pitch took years to master, but master it he did. While Dickey’s skyscraping 2012 stands above his pre-existing work, he’s been at another level for a while.

For instance, here are his combined numbers from 2010 and 2011: 383 IP, 3.08 ERA. So he was working at an “ace-like” level even before his work in 2012. What distinguishes his 2012 season is the leap in strikeout rate, from 5.8 in 2011 to 8.9 in 2012. Sustainable? Signs point to yes.

First, look to the tools we typically use to identify outlier pitching performances — BABIP, home-run/fly-ball percentage, and percentage of base-runners stranded — and you find little cause for concern. The BABIP and HR/FB numbers are in line with 2010-11 levels, and the strand rate is just modestly elevated. That strand rate may regress in 2013, but even if it does Dickey still figures to perform at a high level. Let’s probe a little more deeply into why that appears to be the case …

Courtesy of the most excellent , have a look at Dickey’s velocity chart …

As you can see, Dickey’s knuckler (represented by the color … lime? ochre? sad  lime? jaundice?) has steadily added “oomph” over the years. That bodes well for his ability to sustain his success (knucklefeat to Lecce.However, he insists he was to blame for the 2-1 loss.Mazzarri said, “I want to apologise to the fans, as they were exceptional despite this being our worst performance for a very long time.“We got almost everything wrong tonight. Ters in the high 70s/low 80s are simply unprecedented) — adding mph at an age when conventional pitchers are shedding them. Here’s another good sign for Dickey …

Dickey’s vertical movement, after dipping a bit in 2010 and 2011, spiked this past season, back to 2008-09 levels. It must be noted that Dickey wasn’t effective in 2008 and 2009, but the increased vertical movement in tandem with the improved command (substantially better control, substantially higher K%) he showed in 2012, suggest that one key to Dickey’s surge has been his ability to harness that increased movement. Add it all up, and it looks like a knuckleball that’s continuing to evolve. 

It’s no surprise, then, that Dickey least season went to his knuckle-piece more than 85 percent of the time, which is a career-high. There’s no getting around the fact that Dickey is 38, but he almost exclusively throws a pitch that helps one to defy the typical aging curve. And that pitch has been getting even better. Even if his movement charts and gun readings plateau, Dickey’s knuckler will remain one of the best go-to pitches in the game today. 

Dickey may be g the departure of club legend Gianfranco Zola.The Italian will not be part of Lampard’s new staff after spending the season as an assistant to Maurizio Sarri.Speaking at a news conference on Thursday, before Zola’s departure was made official, Lampaa novelty, but he’s a novelty who’s very good at getting major-league hitters out. Expect that to continue in .

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The pain of another World Series loss could linger long for the Tigers

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Related links | | VideoMore World Series | | | |

“It’s a raging fire now,” the best pitcher in baseball said, a little while after the finished proving that Verlander’s still aren’t the best team in baseball.It’s a funny thing about this game, maybe about any game. The further you go, the better you do, the bigger the disappointment if you don’t take it all the way.Thes he wants to be playing regular Champions League football.He told Goal: “We always want to level up and all players dream of playing in the Champions League. It’s a big competition and it’s good to have been followed by these kind of clubs. These ar Tigers aren’t losers, and their season didn’t end in disarray. But sometimes the disappointment of falling just short can be worse than the disappointment of not coming close at all.”Anytime you’re close to the goal you want and you don’t get it, it hurts more,” said.The Tigers’ season ended with no excuses. They didn’t lose because of bad luck or a long layoff. They lost because when it counted, their big guys didn’t hit, and for the most part their little guys didn’t, either.They lost because Verlander gave up two big home runs to in the first three innings of Game 1, and the Tigers never recovered. They never led a game until the third inning of Game 4, and even that lead only held up for three innings.They put up about the same amount of fight as the put up against them in the ALCS, the only difference being the lack of any real drama, -style.”There was nothing fluky about it,” manager Jim Leyland said. “We got our ass kicked. We got to the heavyweight fight, and we got knocked out.”Leyland spoke for a while about how the Tiger culture has changed in the seven years since he arrived. He took over a team that had gone 13 years without a winning season, and in seven years since has been to three American League Championship Series and two World Series.”It’s been great,” he said. “It’s been fun.”He never said it would continue. He never spoke about the future.In fact, if there was any sense of finality about this World Series loss, it was that it ended with more uncertainty than ever that the 67-year-old Leyland will return for another year.With him or without him, the Tigers could well be back. Their key players are signed or under control, and Victor Martinez will be back after missing all of this season after knee surgery.As always, they’ll have owner Mike Ilitch’s money available, and they’ll have the drive that comes with having an 83-year-old owner who badly wants a World Series ring.”The same team’s going to be here — with more,” Fielder said. “That’s a plus.”It was back in January, when the Tigers signed Fielder, that people seriously began talking about the Tigers as a team that could win the World Series — or as a team that should win the World Series.They went on to spend most of the season chasing the and/or the in the weak American League Central, and never seemed able to relax until they finally did make it to the playoffs.The no-doubt high point arrived 10 days ago, with the four-game sweep of the Yankees, but it was followed quickly by five days without a game and then by the four straight losses to the Giants.We’ll never know for sure whether the layoff had anything to do with the Tigers’ lack of hitting against the Giants (or with Verlander’s out-of-sync, out-of-character bad outing in Game 1). , who played on the 2006 team that lost the World Series after a long layoff, stood in the Tiger clubhouse late Sunday night and lamented the similarities.Whether it was that or whether it was simply the Giants’ strong pitching, the Tigers ended the World Series feeling that the world hadn’t seen them at close to their best.”They played perfectly,” catcher said. “We just couldn’t keep up.”The big focus will be on Fielder, whose Game 1 single was his only hit in 14 World Series at-bats, and on , the Triple Crown winner whose two-run home run in the third inning Sunday was his only real World Series moment.But just as in 2006, when the Tigers hit .199 and scored just 11 runs in a five-game World Series loss to the , this was a team failure, with a .159 team batting average and just six runs in four games.The Tigers’ pitching was good enough that when they briefly took a 2-1 lead in Game 4, they began to dream of a miracle comeback. Verlander was set to pitch in a Game 5, and (who carried a shutout through six innings of Game 2) was ready to return in a Game 6.”There wasn’t a doubt in my mind,” Verlander said.Not a doubt, even though no team had ever recovered from a three games to one World Series hole, even though the record now shows that 21 of the 24 teams that have fallen behind three games to none haven’t even made it to Game 5.”We had a good chance to win it all,” Verlander said — and yes, he was talking about winning it all after losing the first three.At 29, Verlander has accomplished plenty, from Rookie of the Year to Most Valuable Player and Cy Young Award winner in the same season. He’s been an All-Star starting pitcher (although it didn’t go well), and he has twice started Game 1 of the World Series (which hasn’t gone well, either).What he hasn’t done is what the Tigers haven’t done since 1984.He knows it. He feels it.”Absolutely,” he said. “There’s definit after completing a switch to Inter Milan.The Italian side paid £74m to get the deal over the line.Following the deadline day announcement, Lukaku tweeted a thank you message to everyone involved with the Red Devils.To everyone involved with Manchesely a burning fire to win it all. The only thing that takes that away is to win it.”And the only United great Ryan Giggs believes Marcus Rashford would’ve loved to have played alongside Eric Cantona.Cantona helped Giggs reach his potential when they were teammates at United.And the Wales coach told Bleacher Report: “He was just different. You sthing that makes it worse is to come all this way, and then lose it.Months from now, perhaps even days from now, the Tigers will look back on 2012 as a good year. There’s no other way to see it, when you win a pennant, when you’re one of the final two teams standing.”It would be very tough to look back at this year as a negative,” Verlander said. But it will oh so easy to look back and feel the pain of watching the Giants rush the field at Comerica Park when it ended.”That’s something that’s going to be etched in my mind,” Avila said. “The thing is, we do have the team to get back here.”They have no choice now. They have no choice but to find a way back.As every other team that loses a World Series would tell you — as Verlander would tell you about 2006 — the pain of losing won’t go away quickly.It may never leave, unless or until they win.