Ray Ratto

Swisher's blast powers Yankees past A's, 4-2

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Swisher's blast powers Yankees past A's, 4-2

June 1, 2011BOXSCORE A'SVIDEOMLBPAGE MLBSCOREBOARD

OAKLAND (AP) A.J. Burnett settled down after an early homer to snap an 11-start winless streak on the road, and Nick Swisher homered against his former team to help the New York Yankees beat the Oakland Athletics for the 10th straight time, 4-2 on Wednesday.Derek Jeter got his 2,984th hit and Alex Rodriguez drove in a run for the Yankees, who have their longest winning streak against the A's since winning 14 in a row from 1956-57.Josh Willingham hit a two-run home run and Gio Gonzalez (5-3) took his first loss since April for Oakland, which was swept by the Yankees in a three-game series and has lost 23 of the last 26 meetings against New York.Burnett (6-3) had not won a game away from Yankee Stadium since last July in Cleveland, going 0-5 with a 5.64 ERA in his previous 11 road starts. He looked to be on his way to another rough day when Willingham homered in the first inning, but didn't allow anything else.
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Burnett gave up two runs and three hits in seven innings for the fourth straight strong start from New York's rotation, giving the Yankees a season-long four-game win streak. Burnett allowed only one hit after the first inning - a two-out triple by Coco Crisp in the fifth.Joba Chamberlain pitched a scoreless eighth, snaring a line drive to start an inning-ending double play. Mariano Rivera finished for his 14th save in 17 chances and first since May 10. It was Rivera's 1,002nd career appearance, tying Goose Gossage for 14th place all-time.The A's came into the series on a four-game winning streak with their top three starters lined up to face the powerful Yankees. But New York battered Trevor Cahill, Brett Anderson and Gonzalez for 18 runs in the three-game sweep.Gonzalez allowed four runs five hits and four walks in 6 1-3 innings.
GUTIERREZ: Swisher's old playground
For the third straight day, the A's fell behind before even coming to bat. After allowing two-run homers in the first inning the past two days, Oakland managed to keep the deficit at one this time: Jeter led off with a double - the third straight game he has opened with a hit - and scored on Rodriguez's two-out double.
That was the first hit allowed by Gonzalez in 22 at-bats with runners in scoring position and two outs.Oakland responded in the bottom half with a two-run homer of its own. Willingham's 10th of the season came with two outs and David DeJesus on second, giving the A's a 2-1 lead.That ended a stretch of 60 straight innings that Oakland did not hold a lead at the end of a frame against the Yankees.
VIDEO: Bob Geren postgame
The lead lasted only until the fourth inning, when Swisher connected for a three-run shot off Gonzalez, one of the players the A's acquired when they dealt Swisher to the Chicago White Sox three years ago.Notes: Yankees LHP CC Sabathia threw out the ceremonial first pitch as part of a ceremony to honor the Little League program in his hometown of Vallejo, Calif. ... Yankees RHP Phil Hughes (shoulder inflammation) threw about 50 pitches in a bullpen session the game and is scheduled to face hitters Saturday in Anaheim. ... Oakland DH Hideki Matsui, who is hitting just .222, got his second straight day off against a RHP. ... Oakland reliever Joey Devine has not allowed an earned run in 33 consecutive innings dating to May 23, 2008.

NBA All-Star Game more and more reveals personalities rather than skills

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AP

NBA All-Star Game more and more reveals personalities rather than skills

The voting for the NBA All-Star starters was properly instructive to both Adam Silver and the public at large about exactly what the game is meant to be – which is why I totally get their decision not to televise the All-Star draft.

It’s really a personality test for everyone involved, for good and ill.

I think having a draft nobody can see is idiotic, stealing an idea the NHL used and then discarded years ago and then not employing the reason why they did it to begin with, but if the All-Star Game is really an expression of ego, then the next best thing to having no draft is having one nobody can see.

The All-Star Game really only functions as a coronation of the elite by the elite, a festival of mutual backslapping friend-rewarding that has nothing to do with the playing of the game, or the moving of the T-shirts or jerseys or expensive hotel rooms. This is about stratifying the player pool so that everyone knows who’s who and what’s what.

Everything else is irrelevant, and the draft reinforces that. Kevin Durant not wanting to be a captain is strategic thinking by a future industrialist. Stephen Curry not minding being a captain is the perfect who-cares statement for someone who doesn’t mind playing the game because objecting to it takes too much work. LeBron James being a captain is the perfect political muscle-flexing that fits his personality.

Damian Lillard already assuming that he won’t be named to the team is a statement about his being considered the perpetual one-level-down guard. Russell Westbrook being named and then controlling the ball as he would in a regular season game is a statement about how he views his place as a disruptor. And on and on and on – the All-Star Game more and more reveals personalities rather than skills.

Does televising the draft help us understand the actual meaning of the event? Maybe, but the NBA would prefer you consider it a festival of the game itself, which it plainly isn’t. Proof, you say? 192-182 in 2017. 196-173 in 2016. 163-158 in 2015. 163-155 in 2014. There hasn’t been a normal-looking score in 15 years, which means it’s not a game at all.

That isn’t the news, though. It’s that the NBA has made this is a three-day event – the day the captains and starters are named, the day the reserves are picked, and the day that teams are chosen. And every bit of it is about the reaction to that. There is no show thereafter, and the players know it. They care about the selections, because that’s how they’re keeping score.

So go team. Whatever the hell that means.

 

Jack Cooley gets an All-Star vote

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USATSI

Jack Cooley gets an All-Star vote

The player(s) have spoken. They want Jack Cooley at All-Star weekend.

Hidden amongst the NBA’s All-Star balloting there is always a nugget or two that catches your eye. According to the final tallies, Cooley got some love in the player voting for the NBA All-Star team.

Cooley has played a total of two minutes for the Sacramento Kings this season. Maybe it’s the way he hustles all over the court or his debonair throwback look during a media day photo shoot. Something about Jack Cooley draws you in.

The 26-year-old big man took to Twitter to thank the anonymous voter Thursday evening.

Playing on a two-way contract for the Sacramento Kings, the former Notre Dame star is currently posting 15.5 points and 8.5 rebounds for the Reno Bighorns this season.

In addition to the single vote he received from the players, Cooley also garnered 956 votes from the fans and finished with a weighted score of 79.5 in the voting process.

Rookie Bogdan Bogdanovic led the Kings in fan voting with 33,842 votes. Georgios Papagiannis was second with 20,082 votes.

H/T to Andy Larsen of KSL.com.

UPDATE (10:12 p.m.): Cooley had some more fun on Twitter after this story's initial publication.