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Rolen's error gives Game 3 to the Giants

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Rolen's error gives Game 3 to the Giants

From Comcast SportsNetCINCINNATI (AP) -- Joaquin Arias hit a grounder toward third base and took off, covering those 90 feet in a blink as a full-to-capacity ballpark went silent with angst.Which would get there first, the infielder or the ball? Who would win the decisive playoff dash?"That's the fastest I've ever run to first," Arias said.Fast enough to extend the San Francisco Giants' season one more day.Reds third baseman Scott Rolen bobbled the short-hop, giving Arias enough time to beat the throw as the go-ahead run scored for a 2-1 victory Tuesday night that avoided an NL division series sweep.Hardly able to get a hit the last two games, the Giants turned a passed ball and a misplayed grounder into a win that cut their series deficit to 2-1 and extended Cincinnati's 17 years of home postseason futility."These are the type of games we've played all season long," said Sergio Romo, who pitched the last two innings for the win. "We are a gritty and grinding team."And, with their season on the line, a little lucky, too."We got a break there at the end," manager Bruce Bochy said.Left-hander Barry Zito will pitch Game 4 on Wednesday for the Giants, who have won the last 11 times he started. The Reds have to decide whether to try ace Johnny Cueto, forced out of the opener in San Francisco on Saturday with spasms in his back and side.Manager Dusty Baker said after the game that they hadn't decided whether to let Cueto try it, bring back Mat Latos on short rest again, or replace Cueto with Mike Leake, who wasn't on the division series roster.Switching out Cueto would leave the Reds ace ineligible to pitch in the championship series should the Reds get that far."It's very difficult, but it all depends on if your ace can't go or whatever it is," Baker said. "That's part of the conversation -- us going without him. We realize what's at stake."They were hoping to avoid having to make that choice. One grounder forced the issue.The Giants managed only three hits against Homer Bailey and the Reds bullpen, but got two of them in the 10th -- along with a passed ball by Ryan Hanigan -- to pull it out. San Francisco won despite striking out 16 times.Rolen, an eight-time Gold Glove winner, couldn't cleanly come up with Arias' grounder, which put him in a tough position."I've gone through the play many times in my mind between then and now, and I think I would play it the same way," Rolen said. "It hit my glove. I just couldn't get it to stick."The Reds haven't won a home playoff game since 1995, the last time they reached the NL championship series. One win away from making it back there, they couldn't beat a Giants team that has barely been able to get a hit.San Francisco got only two hits while losing 9-0 on Sunday night, setting up that 2-0 deficit in the series. The Giants had only one single in seven innings off Homer Bailey, making his first start at Great American Ball Park since his Sept. 28 no-hitter in Pittsburgh.Fortunately for the Giants, Bailey's one lapse led to a run. He hit a batter, walked another and gave up a sacrifice fly by Angel Pagan in the third inning.That was it until the 10th, with the Giants going down swinging -- the Reds set a season high with 16 strikeouts. Closer Aroldis Chapman got a pair of strikeouts on 100 mph fastballs during a perfect ninth inning, keeping it tied at 1.San Francisco's one-hit wonders finally got it going against Jonathan Broxton, who gave up leadoff singles by Buster Posey -- the NL batting champion -- and Hunter Pence, who pulled his left calf on a wild swing before getting his hit.With two outs, Hanigan couldn't come up with a pitch, letting the runners advance. Moments later, Cincinnati's chance for a sweep was over.Instead, a Reds team that lost a lot -- closer Ryan Madson in spring training, top hitter Joey Votto for six weeks at midseason, Baker for the NL Central clincher, Cueto in the first inning of the first playoff game -- ended up with another playoff loss at home.Baker was back in the home dugout at Great American for the first time in nearly a month, recovered from an irregular heartbeat and a mini-stroke. After a pregame ovation, he settled in his red folding chair with a toothpick on his lips.The 63-year-old manager watched his pitching staff dominate again, but fail to get that breakthrough win. This time, the offense came up short, getting only four hits.Cincinnati hasn't won a home playoff game since beating the Dodgers 10-1 at Riverfront Stadium for a three-game division sweep in the 1995 NLDS. They then got swept by Atlanta.They didn't get back to the playoffs again until 2010, when they got no-hit by Roy Halladay and swept by the Phillies in the opening round.The second-largest crowd in Great American history was still getting the hang of playoff rooting. A video board message instructed the 44,501 fans not to wave white rally towels while the Reds were in the field -- could be distracting.Didn't take long to get those towels twirling. Brandon Phillips led off with a single, but was thrown out at third when he tried to advance on a ball that got away from Posey. It was costly -- the Reds went on to score on a walk and a pair of singles, including Jay Bruce's RBI hit to right.The Reds got only one more hit the rest of the way.NOTES:The game started 3 minutes late because a sign-waving fan ran onto the field. He was tackled by police in center field. ... Giants avoided their third playoff sweep in franchise history. ... The Giants haven't lost three in a row since they dropped five straight from July 25-30. ... Tom Browning, who pitched the Reds' previous no-hitter -- a perfect game against the Dodgers in 1988 -- threw the ceremonial pitch. ... Bailey fanned six in a row, matching the Reds' postseason record. ... The only larger crowd at GABP was for the 2010 playoff game against Philadelphia.

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Need to Know: Five key moments from the Redskins' loss to the Eagles

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Associated Press

Need to Know: Five key moments from the Redskins' loss to the Eagles

Here is what you need to know on this Tuesday, October 24, five days before the Washington Redskins play the Dallas Cowboys at FedEx Field.

Timeline

Today’s schedule: Jay Gruden conference call, 3 p.m.

Days until:

—Redskins @ Seahawks (11/5) 12
—Vikings @ Redskins (11/12) 19
—Giants @ Redskins Thanksgiving (11/23) 30

Injures of note: G Brandon Scherff (knee) will have MRI today; OT Trent Williams (knee) aggravated previous injury; OLB Preston Smith (groin); CB Fabian Moreau (hamstring); CB Josh Holsey (chest).
Postgame injury report here; Jay Gruden will update injuries in 3 p.m. media conference call.

Final thoughts on Redskins vs Eagles

Fred Davis 31-yard reception in the second quarter set up the Redskins’ first touchdown. His first one led to a field goal that opened the scoring for the Redskins. The fountain of youth continues to flow for the 33-year-old tight end.

—The Redskins were keeping Carson Wentz off balance by applying pressure and either getting to him with the sack or forcing him to get rid of the ball off balance. But on a second and 16 play in the second quarter they didn’t blitz and Wentz had all day to launch a 64-yard TD bomb to Mack Hollins to tie the score at 10. Greg Manusky has to mix things up but going away from what was working cost the Redskins here.

—Down by 14, the Redskins cobbled together a third-quarter drive after their defense had held the Eagles to a three and out for the first time since the second quarter. It got going when Cousins scrambled for eight years and took a hit to convert a third down. The drive was capped by two Cousins passed to Jordan Reed, the second on a five-yard touchdown pass to make it 24-17.

—But the momentum swing was very temporary. It looked like the Redskins had Wentz sacked on third down. But somehow, he popped out of a pile of pass rushers and bolted for 17 yards. The air seemed to go out of the balloon for the Redskins. The Eagles capped to drive with a TD to restore the two-touchdown lead in the fourth quarter. Redskins fans may want to avoid NFL highlight shows all week; you’ll see that play a lot.

—There still was time left for the Redskins to mount a miracle comeback. But Cousins threw a pass that went right to safety Cory Graham. It was nowhere near a receiver. To be fair, Cousins did get his but still it was a bad pass and it ended the competitive phase of the game.

Stay up to date on the Redskins. Rich Tandler covers the team 365 days a year. Like his Facebook page Facebook.com/TandlerNBCS and follow him on Twitter @TandlerNBCS.

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Nuggets player Nikola Jokic bumps Scott Brooks in bizarre, costly mistake

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USA Today Sports Images

Nuggets player Nikola Jokic bumps Scott Brooks in bizarre, costly mistake

So, this is a weird way to end a basketball game.

The Wizards were up just two points on the Denver Nuggets with :32 seconds left on Monday night when talented third-year center Nikola Jokic made a mistake that may have cost Denver a win. During a timeout, Jokic bumped shoulders with Wizards head coach Scott Brooks. Brooks was immediately incensed and Jokic was awarded a technical.

It was a bizarre moment. Watch it here:

Bradley Beal hit the technical free throw, then sank a layup on the next possession. Jokic made dumb mistake, whether it was intentional or not, and the Wizards capitalized in a 109-104 win.

Naturally, the Wizards were surprised by what went down.

“That’s something you don’t do," John Wall said. "No matter what’s going on between players and teammates. That’s something you don’t do to a coach. That’s like me calling a coach a certain name. Hopefully he apologizes to [Brooks], but luckily we got the win.”

Both Brooks and Jokic said it wasn't on purpose.

“It was an awkward, weird situation. I don’t think he did it on purpose but it happened," Brooks said. "I moved on and the referee had to do what he had to do and move on. But I never had that happened before.”

“I’m sorry because I put my team in a bad position,” Jokic said.

Jokic's excuse was that he was trying to look at the score. You be the judge.

[RELATED: WALL EXPLAINS WOLF SEASON, ITS CONNECTION TO MICHAEL JACKSON]