A's smoked by Smoak, Mariners 10-2


A's smoked by Smoak, Mariners 10-2


PEORIA, Ariz. (AP) Justin Smoak is starting to see the results of all his hard work at the plate.Smoak hit a two-run homer and finished with four RBIs, leading the Seattle Mariners to an 10-2 win over the Oakland Athletics on Saturday."Been working on a few things," said Smoak, who began spring training with a 2-for-18 slide. "Offensively, just trying to stay in the middle of the field and (Saturday) was good, both my hits were in the middle of the field. If I can stay there, hopefully good things will happen for me."Smoak, who also had a two-run single in the fourth inning, is expected to start at first base on opening day.Milton Bradley collected two more hits for Seattle and is 7 for 18 with a team-high three doubles this spring. Chone Figgins, Josh Bard and Jack Cust also drove in runs for the Mariners.Seattle starter Blake Beavan pitched three innings, allowing a run and three hits."It's always nice to face the heart of the lineup for any team because you get to see how your stuff is," Beavan said.Mark Ellis, Ryan Sweeney and Kevin Kouzmanoff had two hits apiece for Oakland. Guillermo Moscoso pitched three innings for the A's, yielding four runs and six hits."First time he got hit around a little bit," manager Bob Geren said of Moscoso, who is in contention for the fifth starter slot. "They had a pretty good lineup in there and hit some balls we didn't run down really well. It wasn't one of his better outings."NOTES: Mariners ace Felix Hernandez struck out six over four innings in a minor league game, allowing two runs and six hits. He threw 42 of his 67 pitches for strikes. ... Mariners OF Franklin Gutierrez returned from Florida and went 0 for 3. He had been spending time with his injured father-in-law, Atlanta Braves minor league manager Luis Salazar. Salazar was hurt when a batted ball struck him in the face on Wednesday. ... The Mariners optioned LHP Mauricio Robles, INF Alex Liddi and OF Carlos Peguero to Triple-A Tacoma, and OF Johermyn Chavez to Double-A Jackson. They also reassigned RHP Yusmeiro Petit and LHP James Paxton to minor league camp. ... Oakland RHPs Michael Wuertz and Joey Devine threw simulated games. Wuertz made 20 pitches and is expected to pitch again Tuesday. Devine ended his session after nine pitches because he felt "tightness," according to Geren.

Steve Kerr: #FakeKlay 'perfect metaphor for our conditioning'

Steve Kerr: #FakeKlay 'perfect metaphor for our conditioning'

First, there was #ChinaKlay.

Now, there is #FakeKlay.

In case you missed it, a Klay Thompson lookalike was seated behind the Warriors bench during their season-opening loss to the Rockets on Tuesday. He had the full jersey, the facial hair and the cadence.

A day later, Warriors head coach Steve Kerr was asked about #FakeKlay and he used it as an opportunity to state that he felt his players were out of shape.

"I thought it was a perfect metaphor for our conditioning as a team," Kerr told the media in Oakland. "I turned around and was like 'Klay, did you have a few extra burgers last night? What happened?' That was great. I love that guy."

So Kerr is definitely a fan of #FakeKlay. No word yet if the real Klay has met #FakeKlay. We'll let you know if they do cross paths.

Warriors spend day reviewing Rockets' horror show, focus on one area of concern


Warriors spend day reviewing Rockets' horror show, focus on one area of concern

OAKLAND -- Sidelined with a back strain, Andre Iguodala spent Tuesday night “yelling at the TV more than I normally do” as the Warriors labored through an uneven performance before blowing a 13-point lead in the fourth quarter.

So there was Iguodala, this time with his teammates, sitting before a monitor Wednesday as coach Steve Kerr review the horror show that was a 122-121 loss to the Houston Rockets.

“We only did about a half-hour on the floor, mostly skill work,” Kerr said after the light practice. “Watched a lot of video.

“That game was a weird game because we were shooting the ball well and scoring enough to win. But we never had control of it the way we normally have control of a game, with defense and toughness.”

Though the Warriors were hampered by injuries -- Iguodala being out, while Draymond Green and Omri Casspi were hurt during the game -- beyond their control, there was at least one thing they believe they can fix immediately.

They can avoid some of the fouls, particularly those that are mindless.

That’s the trap Stephen Curry fell into, picking up three fouls in the first four minutes. That he was limited to 30 minutes, and only 18 through the first three quarters, had an impact on the playing rotation and was a factor in the loss.

“The only thing I’m worried about with him is just those little fouls,” Iguodala said. “Because when he’s on the court, no matter if he’s scoring or not, he’s making life easier for everyone else.”

Kerr after the game cited conditioning as an issue and elaborated on the subject Wednesday.

“Conditioning is not just physical. It’s mental, too,” he said. “We were not ready, mentally, to play that game, even when we weren’t tired early in the game.

“There were other lapses, too. After made baskets, transition threes for them we neglected to pick up. That’s not physical conditioning. That’s mental conditioning. That’s where we need to get better. And we will.”

The Warriors will be wounded in more ways than one when they board their flight to New Orleans Thursday morning. They’ll have some achy players, for sure, but they’ll also have a 0-1 record.

“I feel like losses have this huge effect on us that usually benefits us,” Iguodala said.