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last updated: Wed, 22 Oct 2014 23:29:39 -0400

Your Top Plays for Today

Indianapolis Colts wide receiver Reggie Wayne (87) runs away from New York Giants' Jayron Hosley (28) for a touchdown during the second half of an NFL football game Monday, Nov. 3, 2014, in East Rutherford, N.J. (AP Photo/Bill Kostroun)Your Top Plays for Today: AP's Sports Guide


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Sport | The Guardian
last updated: Tue, 25 Nov 2014 22:36:00 GMT2014-11-25T22:36:00Z

Manchester City 3-2 Bayern Munich | Champions League match report
• In pictures: the best images from the Etihad Stadium

The astonishing thing about this night is that it, once again, it exposed all Manchester City’s shortcomings in Europe. They had been outpassed and often humbled by a side that was down to 10 men after 20minutes. Yet if there is one thing that cannot be said of Manuel Pellegrini’s team it is that they ever give up.

“We’ll fight to the end,” goes the song, and what an incredible comeback it was in those last few minutes when all of Bayern Munich’s calm and resolve disintegrated and Sergio Agüero slid in the two goals that gave him his hat-trick and left their qualifying group with an entirely different complexion before their final match against Roma in Stadio Olimpico. City had gone from a position of virtually no hope to second in the group in a matter of minutes and Pellegrini was spared another round of questions about whether he is capable of taking them to the next level.

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NYT > Sports
last updated: Tue, 25 Nov 2014 18:00:36 GMT

I.O.C. Corrects Record on 1964 Olympic Skating Pair
The International Olympic Committee on Tuesday updated its website to recognize the Americans Vivian and Ronald Joseph as bronze medalists in the 1964 Innsbruck Games.






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CNN.com - Sport
last updated: Tue, 28 Oct 2014 07:38:02 EDT

The Sound of Music -- on skis?
The U.S. women's ski team is certainly hitting the high notes in more ways than one.

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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: Tue, 25 Nov 2014 19:20:00 GMT

Updates: Hughes still in induced coma
PHILLIP Hughes remains in a critical condition in intensive care after undergoing surgery following his sickening head blow while batting at the SCG.

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ESPN.com
last updated: Tue, 25 Nov 2014 13:54:20 PST

Sandoval set for 'new challenge' in Boston
The Red Sox have finalized their contract with Pablo Sandoval, the first of two big signings aimed at boosting Boston's offense after a last-place finish in the AL East.

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We have a pair of expensive new Sox. Are they worth it? - Boston Globe


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We have a pair of expensive new Sox. Are they worth it?
Boston Globe
This week, the Red Sox made a pair of big acquisitions, picking up Hanley Ramirez and Pablo Sandoval. They are both proven hitters who can help with the team's lackluster run production, but they don't come cheap: Ramirez's contract is for at least four ...
Ben Cherington: Pablo Sandoval Was 'Obvious' Target For Boston Red SoxNESN.com
After Red Sox jolt, MLB's marketplace has new lookUSA TODAY
Red Sox introduce Sandoval after finalizing agreementThe Detroit News
New York Daily News -WEEI.com -San Jose Mercury News
all 1,666 news articles »

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Roster moving day
Behold, the new and…uh, not improved Pirates 40-man roster: The #Pirates 40-man roster now contains 40 players (20 pitchers, 4 catchers, 9 infielders and 7 outfielders). pic.twitter.com/hy6WDZApRO — Pittsburgh Pirates (@Pirates) November 21, 2014 The list changed quite a bit on Thursday, as it was the deadline to protect Rule-5 draft eligible prospects by adding […]

Behold, the new and…uh, not improved Pirates 40-man roster:

The list changed quite a bit on Thursday, as it was the deadline to protect Rule-5 draft eligible prospects by adding them to the roster. The Pirates added four: Jameson Taillon, Nick Kingham, Elias Diaz, and Willy Garcia – fairly obvious moves. They also claimed infielder Pedro Florimon off waivers. They cleared space for those additions by designating Ramon Cabrera, Brent Morel, and most notably Ike Davis for assignment.

It was pretty clear that Davis wasn’t going to stick around.  If the plan is to play Pedro Alvarez at first – which it clearly is at this point – there was no point in keeping both Alvarez and Davis, who fill the same role and would both be somewhat expensive in 2015 compared to their mediocre offensive production in 2014. Now, it’s worth noting that you can make a very reasonable argument for keeping Davis over Alvarez, if you like on-base percentage more than large home run totals (which, again, is quite reasonable). That simply wasn’t going to happen, though – Pedro has the flashier upside, he is more entrenched in the organization (as the Pirates “guy”), and even though Davis was statistically passable this year (104 OPS+), I think most would agree that he felt like a disappointment and wasn’t what the Pirates were looking for as a middle-of-the-order hitter.

So I don’t really have an issue with choosing Pedro over Davis, but just taking a glance at the list above, it’s fairly depressing. There’s just a lot of “filler” there – guys that were claimed off waivers for seemingly no reason, Triple-A depth, guys that you’d really hope the Pirates aren’t planning on putting in the majors. Now, obviously the roster is going to look a little depleted with free agents departing, there is plenty of time to shore things up, and every team has to acquire guys like that. Still, you wonder about the depth of the organization a little bit, or at least about some individual decisions. For example, the Pirates left outfielder Mel Rojas unprotected for the Rule 5 draft, while they easily could have dumped a number of guys (Elmore? Guilmet? Roe? Scahill? Florimon? Decker?) on that roster without losing a wink of sleep. Rojas was eligible for the draft last year and wasn’t taken, and he isn’t a can’t miss prospect or anything like that (he projects as a 4th OF at this point), but he had a nice year in the upper minors this season and a team could easily hide him on a major league bench all season to steal him away. (Heck, if the Brewers could do it with a rookie ball pitcher, a team like the Astros can do it with a guy putting up decent AAA numbers.) What’s the point of keeping a guy like Jaff Decker instead? Or why not keep Davis around a little longer and at least try to trade him for something, as most speculated they would? I’m not really sure. This may be (and probably is) a long rant about something that ultimately won’t matter, but it seems strange to me.

Other news, notes, and thoughts from the past few days…

  • Brad Lincoln is back, on a minor league deal. I guess the Pirates win the Travis Snider trade after all. Lincoln bombed with the Jays and then the Phillies after being traded away, but he was showing more promise as a reliever and those teams seemed to be steering him back to starting. I wouldn’t rule out the possibility of him becoming a useful reliever again – can’t hurt to give him a shot.
  • The Cardinals traded Shelby Miller to Atlanta for Jason Heyward. Sigh. This is the sort of deal that may look fair on the surface, but you just know it’s going to turn out great for the Cards. Heyward is a beast that, while he has disappointed a bit recently, could easily turn into an elite corner OF in an instant. And he’s only under contract for one year, but I’d expect the Cards to extend him if he does well with them. Meanwhile, while Miller is a promising young arm, he was one of the Pirates’ favorite pitchers to hit against.
  • Josh Harrison won MLB’s Heart and Hustle award. No further explanation needed on that one. Good stuff.
  • If Francisco Liriano can really be signed for three years and $36 million, the Pirates need to get that done. Now.
  • This is just wrong :(
  • Giancarlo Stanton‘s new contract is just…whoa. After simply getting over the absurdity of the number (and it’s not totally absurd in the current MLB environment…just absurd when thinking about day to day money for us “normal” people), it’s natural to think about how, say, Andrew McCutchen‘s contract compares. It doesn’t – Cutch’s deal is an absolute steal for the Pirates at this point. The conversation will certainly steer to how the Pirates are getting away with being cheap and how much money Cutch will eventually make when he hits FA in 2018, but take a moment to realize how huge it was for the Pirates to get that current contract done early. Without an extension, Cutch would be about to enter his final season before FA, and if you though the Martin thing was a mess this year…woof.

Original article: Roster moving day

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