Red Sox

Gronkowski named AFC Offensive Player of the Week

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Gronkowski named AFC Offensive Player of the Week

The Patriots announced that Rob Gronkowski was named AFC Offensive Player of the Week for his performance in the Patriots 34-27 victory over the Washington Redskins.

It is the first Player of the Week honor for Gronkowski.

Gronkowski caught six passes for a career-high 160 yards and two touchdowns against the Redskins. He extended his NFL record for overall touchdowns in a single season by a tight end to 16 (15 receiving and 1 rushing). His 14th and 15th touchdown receptions of the season established an NFL record for most touchdown receptions in a season by a tight end.

Gronkowski also became just the second New England tight end to go over 1,000 yards for the season after the 160 yards pushed his 2011 total to 1,088. TE Ben Coates set the franchise mark for a tight end with 1,174 yards in 1994.

Gronkowski needs 203 yards in the final three games to set the NFL record for most yards in a season by a tight end, held by Kellen Winslow, who had 1,290 yards in 1980 with San Diego.

It is the fifth Player of the Week honor for the Patriots in 2011. Tom Brady was named AFC Offensive Player of the Week following the first two games of the season at Miami on Sept. 12 and vs. San Diego on Spt. 18, Andre Carter was named AFC Defensive Player of the Week following the win at the Jets on Nov. 13 and Julian Edelman was named AFC Special Teams Player of the Week following the win vs. Kansas City on Nov. 21.

ALCS: Tanaka, Yankees top Keuchel, Astros 5-0 for 3-2 lead

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ALCS: Tanaka, Yankees top Keuchel, Astros 5-0 for 3-2 lead

NEW YORK - Masahiro Tanaka pitched seven innings of three-hit ball and the New York Yankees finally solved Houston Astros nemesis Dallas Keuchel, beating the ace lefty 5-0 on Wednesday for a 3-2 lead in the AL Championship Series.

Gary Sanchez hit an RBI single off Keuchel and later homered to help the wild-card Yankees win for the third straight day at home and move within one victory of their first trip to the World Series since 2009.

The teams head back to Houston for Game 6 on Friday night, when Justin Verlander and the reeling Astros will try to regain their footing following an off day and force a decisive Game 7. Luis Severino is scheduled to start for New York.

Just days ago, Houston was up two games to none and appeared to be closing in on its second World Series appearance. But the Astros, like defending AL champion Cleveland before them, have been unable to put away these poised Yankees, who improved to 6-0 at home in this postseason in front of their cheering, chanting fans.

NBC SPORTS BOSTON SCHEDULE

Gordon Hayward will have surgery on ankle Wednesday night

Gordon Hayward will have surgery on ankle Wednesday night

BOSTON – Gordon Hayward will have surgery on his left ankle tonight, according to a league source.

Hayward, who suffered a left ankle injury in the first quarter of Boston’s 102-99 loss at Cleveland on Tuesday night, was considering having the surgery in Boston or back in Indiana by a doctor who had operated on him when he played at Butler.

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It’s too soon to determine a timetable for Hayward’s return, although the Celtics anticipate he will most if not all of the remainder of this season.

Hayward’s injury delivers a major blow to a Celtics team that were considered a top-two team in the East by most.

With Hayward out for an extended period of time, teams like Washington and Toronto are likely to get more serious consideration as another strong threat to Cleveland which has advanced to the NBA Finals each of the last three seasons.

Replacing Hayward in the Celtics starting lineup was Marcus Smart who joined Kyrie Irving, Jayson Tatum, Jaylen Brown and Al Horford.

NBC SPORTS BOSTON SCHEDULE