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last updated: Sat, 27 Aug 2016 05:53:47 -0400

The Latest: US goalie Solo calls Sweden "a bunch of cowards"

United States goalkeeper Hope Solo fails to stop a penalty during a penalty shoot-out in the quarter-final match of the women's Olympic football tournament between the United States and Sweden in Brasilia Friday Aug. 12, 2016. The United States was eliminated by Sweden after a penalty shoot-out.(AP Photo/Eraldo Peres)RIO DE JANEIRO (AP) — The Latest on the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro (all times local):


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Sport | The Guardian
last updated: Sat, 27 Aug 2016 03:23:42 GMT2016-08-27T03:23:42Z

Hope Solo's punishment shows that women are judged more harshly | Shireen Ahmed

The goalkeeper’s remarks after crashing out of the Olympics were tactless, but her suspension proves female athletes are unjustly held to a higher standard

Two weeks ago, the US women’s soccer team crashed out of the Olympics. Now their controversial goalkeeper, Hope Solo, has been suspended for six months.

“The comments by Hope Solo after the match against Sweden during the 2016 Olympics were unacceptable, and do not meet the standard of conduct we require from our national team players,” said US Soccer president Sunil Gulati, in announcing her suspension.

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NYT > Sports
last updated: Wed, 24 Aug 2016 16:49:07 GMT

A Motivational Tool: Believing That Tennis’s Big Four Era Is Over
Ending the dominance of Djokovic, Federer, Nadal and Murray requires mental adjustments by the rank and file, says Carlos Moyá, who coaches No. 6 Milos Raonic.

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CNN.com - RSS Channel - Sport
last updated: Fri, 26 Aug 2016 12:24:05 GMT

Europe's 'big four' get Champions League boost
UEFA has announced that Europe's top four leagues will have four guaranteed places in the Champions League group stage from the 2018-19 season.

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Fox Sports Top Stories RSS feed merging with Breaking News
The Fox Sports Top Stories RSS feed is merging with Breaking News. Please use http://feeds.news.com.au/public/rss/2.0/fs_breaking_news_13.xml instead.

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FOXSPORTS.com.au | Breaking News
last updated: Sat, 27 Aug 2016 07:11:00 GMT

Live: Panthers build handy lead over Titans
THE Panthers have started strongly, scoring two early tries to build a handy lead against a Titans side struggling to create chances. Follow our live coverage!

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www.espn.com - TOP
last updated: Fri, 26 Aug 2016 17:55:28 EST

Puppets, no beer and a (very loud) cannon: Scenes from CFB's opener in Australia
Puppets, no beer and a (very loud) cannon: Scenes from CFB's opener in Australia

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NFL may consider a game in Australia - NBCSports.com


ESPN

NFL may consider a game in Australia
NBCSports.com
The 2016 college football season kicked off in Australia with Cal facing Hawaii, and the game drew enough interest that the NFL may consider a game Down Under as well. Hawaii Athletic Director David Matlin told the Sydney Morning Herald that the NFL ...
Webb solid in Cal debut, Bears beat Hawaii 51-31 Down UnderUSA TODAY
Webb leads Cal past Hawaii in SydneySFGate
Cal Bears' football opener vs. Hawaii: What we learnedThe Mercury News
CBSSports.com -KHON2 -ABC News -Hawaii News Now
all 324 news articles »

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The new status quo
It’s been a while since I checked in on here, but it’s almost a little weird well how my general thoughts in the previous post have held up. In short: The Good: OBP The Bad: Pitching depth (and the Cubs being really really good). A month and a half later, the Pirates are leading the […]

It’s been a while since I checked in on here, but it’s almost a little weird well how my general thoughts in the previous post have held up. In short:

The Good: OBP

The Bad: Pitching depth (and the Cubs being really really good).

A month and a half later, the Pirates are leading the league in OBP and are scoring plenty of runs as a result. The pitching may be coming around a little bit lately, but it would still be a stretch to call it anything but shaky. And the Cubs are still looking very tough.

It’s a little weird, honestly. We’re now living in a world where the Pirate offense – not pitching – is carrying them, and the Cubs – not the Cards – are public enemy #1. Things could change, but for now, the Pirates seem to have leapfrogged St Louis – but the Cubs leapfrogged both. So we appear to be headed for another summer of trying to close a semi-healthy deficit against a division opponent while dreading falling back on a wild card matchup with an inferior team with a superior ace pitcher. There are worse fates, I keep telling myself (we lived it for 20 years), but that’s still getting a little old.

Some other notes and thoughts on where things stand, and the first two months of the season:

  • Of course the number one hot topic around the team right now is the Indianapolis pitching cavalry that should provide some much needed help to a very iffy big league rotation. I’m very, very excited to see Jameson Taillon, who has checked pretty much any box in Indianapolis anyone could hope for…now it appears to just be a waiting game for the dreaded Super Two to pass. Sigh. The only good thing about that (besides the team saving money down the road, which, well, you know) is that the Pirates can afford to be extremely conservative with Taillon’s pitch count before he comes up. Innings and workload will be limited for the year at some point with his prized arm coming off two seasons of injuries. (That’s why I’d have liked to have used more of those limited innings at the MLB level this year, but now the Pirates have gotten so close to the Super Two point – sometime in early June – that they almost have to wait it out.)
  • Tyler Glasnow is the bigger arm and more eye popping prospect then Taillon, but if you read some of the reports, I’ll buy the idea that he actually does need some more work – notably on a changeup. Maybe he’d help the bullpen, or be a Juan Nicasio equivalent as a starter, but the Pirates probably don’t want that for his development.
  • Chad Kuhl, on the other hand, probably has a much lower upside but is pitching too well in Indy to ignore. He has to be getting awfully close to getting a look in the majors as well.
  • When one or more of those three reach the majors, I’m very enthusiastic about the bullpen’s chances to be much improved when Nicasio slides from the rotation to the pen. As a two pitch guy who dominates with hard stuff and not “pitchability”, he would just fit so much better in a role where he could go all out and only have to face a set of hitters once in a game.
  • The bullpen desperately needs that help – and more. It’s probably going to be the number one point of emphasis once we creep in to trade talk time – but hey, why wait?
  • I have very few, if any, complaints about the status of pretty much all the position players – starters and bench. It’s a very good offense. Heck, the biggest disappointment to this point has been McCutchen, who I’m not going to worry about.
  • How good is that Gregory Polanco extension looking? Really, really, really freaking good.
  • The Francisco Cervelli extension is nice, too – if only because the catching situation after this year was looking very dicey. It was pretty much going to be Elias Diaz (who is unproven and hurt) or bust. Cervelli offers plenty of stability (and likability).
  • Jung Ho Kang post-injury update: Still the man. I was concerned about how he’d look  – not only coming back from the awful injury, but also adjusting in his second year in the league – but so far he has not missed a beat. And with the depth (mostly provided by Freese), it isn’t a problem that he has to sit once a series or so.
  • I think most of us were expecting an improved version of Jon Niese, compared to what he did in New York. Instead he has been worse. If he can just get back to that level – which you’d think he should eventually – just a league average pitcher – it would help quite a bit, and the value for Neil Walker would be just fine. If not, well, he (and/or Jeff Locke) might be losing a rotation spot if those Indy pitchers keep knocking on the door.

Original article: The new status quo

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