From Comcast SportsNetNEW YORK (AP) -- Rafael Soriano has been so reliable for the New York Yankees that they've hardly missed a beat without Mariano Rivera.Until now.Colby Rasmus hit a three-run homer off Soriano with two outs in the ninth inning and the Toronto Blue Jays took advantage of Derek Lowe's wild pickoff throw in the 11th to beat New York 8-7 Monday night, snapping a seven-game losing streak."He's been so good for us," Yankees manager Joe Girardi said. "He's done a great job. Just tonight wasn't his night."It was Soriano's third blown save in 36 chances since taking over as closer for the injured Rivera in May. New York fell to 69-5 when leading after eight innings.Soriano left the clubhouse without speaking to reporters.Moments after Rasmus' stunning drive put Toronto ahead 7-6, Derek Jeter tied it with a home run off Casey Janssen. But the last-place Blue Jays didn't cave, scratching out a run two innings later to stop an eight-game slide at Yankee Stadium.The loss might be a costly one in more ways than one for the AL East leaders. Slugging first baseman Mark Teixeira was pulled with a left calf injury and sent to the hospital for an MRI that revealed a Grade 1 strain. Teixeira said he expects to miss at least a week, maybe two."He's been such a backbone to our lineup," Nick Swisher said. "For a guy like that to be out of our lineup, that's a big deal."The injury is another blow to the middle of New York's power-packed batting order. Alex Rodriguez has been sidelined since July 25 with a broken left hand but was cleared to take batting practice Tuesday."It's very frustrating," Teixeira said. "We've had our share of bad luck, as most teams in baseball have. We'll have guys step up."Yorvit Torrealba had a two-run shot and Adam Lind also went deep in his first plate appearance for the banged-up Blue Jays since coming off the disabled list. Missing slugger Jose Bautista and several other regulars, Toronto had dropped a season-worst eight straight on the road."When you come here to play in Yankee Stadium, man, anything can happen. I think everybody knows that," Blue Jays reliever Darren Oliver said.Robinson Cano homered twice and Swisher hit a two-run drive for New York.Torrealba singled leading off the 11th for his third hit and pinch-runner Mike McCoy scampered to third when Lowe's pickoff attempt got past first baseman Eric Chavez and rolled into foul territory up the right-field line. Lowe (8-11) was charged with an error."It's a simple throw to first and it cost us," he said, shaking his head. "It's inexecusable, but it happened."After a strikeout, Adeiny Hechavarria hit a slow grounder toward third that forced Jayson Nix to charge the ball. McCoy waited until Nix threw to first, then dashed home and beat Chavez's throw to the plate with a slide."Great instincts," Blue Jays manager John Farrell said.Oliver (3-2) pitched two hitless innings for the win, Toronto's first at Yankee Stadium since May 23, 2011.Rookie right-hander David Phelps gave the Yankees another solid spot start, this one in place of injured Ivan Nova, and New York opened a 6-3 lead in the fifth. Hechavarria got Toronto's comeback started with a two-out RBI single off Cody Eppley in the seventh.Moises Sierra and Rajai Davis singled in the ninth to bring up the slumping Rasmus, who drove a breaking ball deep into the second deck in right for his 21st home run."Real pleased with the way guys competed all the way through the end of the night," Farrell said. "We didn't roll over and we kept coming at them. ... These are those games, in the 11th inning on the road you win it. Sometimes if they go the other way they can almost feel like two losses."On a night when it was downright dangerous to be a Toronto pitcher, four times the Yankees hit sharp comebackers that caromed off the body of a Blue Jays hurler.Henderson Alvarez took the worst one, Russell Martin's hard grounder that smacked off the right-hander's leg in the fourth inning and careened into shallow right field for an RBI single. Alvarez hobbled over to the first base line and bent over in pain. He was checked by a trainer and walked slowly off the field with a bruised left shin."That's just the way the season's gone," Lind said.X-rays were negative and he is day to day. Aaron Laffey relieved and was given all the time he needed to warm up.Alvarez also was checked by the trainer in the second inning after Chavez's comebacker deflected off his pitching hand for an infield single. He threw a couple of warmup pitches and appeared to be OK.Chavez had another infield single in the eighth that hit reliever Aaron Loup. Laffey recovered from a body shot to throw out Jeter in the sixth. Laffey left with a bruised left calf and is day to day."In some ways we dodged a couple of bullets," Farrell said.NOTES:Bautista, back on the disabled list with a left wrist injury, was examined by a hand specialist in Cleveland and was on his way to New York to rejoin the team, Farrell said. The Blue Jays were awaiting test results. ... Yankees RHP David Robertson pitched a scoreless eighth inning hours after his wife, Erin, gave birth to their first child, a baby boy they named Luke Joseph. ... RHP Phil Hughes (12-11, 4.15 ERA) starts Tuesday night for the Yankees against struggling LHP Ricky Romero (8-11, 5.63).
SACRAMENTO -- Light in the rear. It’s a term the Sacramento Kings coaching staff has used since the beginning of training camp to describe the bigs on the roster. On Monday night at Golden 1 Center, the team’s lack of strength inside was on full display as the Denver Nuggets crushed them on the glass.
“I think we’re 29th in the league for rebounding, so that’s a little bit of our makeup of how our team is made,” Dave Joerger said following the Kings’ 114-98 loss.
Joerger is close in his assessment, but off by a few spots. His roster ranks 26th in the league in rebounding overall and 28th on the defensive side of the ball. It’s become an achilles heel for a team that has a few glaring weaknesses.
“When Willie (Cauley-Stein) and Kosta (Koufos) aren’t in there to snag every rebound, we have to get in there and help Zach (Randolph) and help Skal (Labissiere),” veteran Garrett Temple said. “Skal’s a little undersized in terms of weight and Z-Bo will put his body on people, but some people might be able to out jump him.”
On a normal night, Temple is right. Randolph and Labissiere struggle to put up big numbers on the glass. But against the Nuggets, it was Koufos and Cauley-Stein that combined to grab nine rebounds in 51 total minutes of action.
Randolph and Labissiere didn’t fair much better, finishing with 10 boards between the two of them in 38 minutes with the starters. Between the Kings’ four bigs, they were out rebounded by the Nuggets bigs by a final of 34-19.
The Nuggets came into the night a top 10 rebounding team overall and the second best offensive rebounding team in the NBA at 11.8 per game.
It’s not just the bigs that struggled to grab boards for Sacramento. Without Buddy Hield, the club’s best rebounding wing, the Kings’ were dominated 49-34 overall in rebounding, including 14-5 on the offensive glass.
“The first shot, it’s a good contest, we did everything right, except get the rebound,” rookie point guard De’Aaron Fox said. “And then they get an open shot off a second chance shot. If we can complete a lot of plays with the rebound, we’ll be okay.”
To Fox’s point, the defensive possession doesn’t end until the rebound is secured. Sacramento was outscored 19-6 on second chance points. In a 16-point game, those numbers loom large.
“Us guards, we know we have to help our bigs,” Fox said. “We know our bigs are athletic. We know they do what they do, at the end of the day, other team’s guards are helping their bigs rebound and their bigs aren’t alone.”
Outside of the four bigs, none of the other seven players to see action had more than three rebounds. It’s an issue that has to be addressed as the Kings move forward.
“There are some instances that really bothered me,” Joerger said. “We had some guys leaking out, standing at half court and that I won’t have.”
The Kings have a day of practice on Tuesday to try and sure up some of their issues. Some of the problems stem from inexperience, but some of the issue comes down to energy and effort.
It doesn’t even get easier on Wednesday. The Los Angeles Lakers rank second in the league in rebounding at 47.5 boards per game. On the plus side, they also give up the 28th most rebounds in the league.
With a big break until their next game, the Warriors spent a couple days in New York City.
Klay Thompson spent part of his Monday walking around the city.
And as only Thompson could, he wound up appearing on a local news report. But he wasn't talking about basketball. Not even close.
Courtesy of Twitter user @MP_Trey, Thompson was interviewed on Fox 5 NY to talk about ... scaffolding.
"I usually observe if the piping and stuff is new. Sometimes, you know, something looks like it's been there a while, I try to avoid that," Thompson said in the report.
You can watch the odd video here: