Bears

Angels' Weaver hurls no-no

752500.png

Angels' Weaver hurls no-no

ANAHEIM, Calif. (AP) Jered Weaver pitched the second no-hitter in the majors in less than two weeks, completely overmatching Minnesota and leading the Los Angeles Angels to a 9-0 win over the Twins on Wednesday night.

Weaver struck out nine and walked one. The Twins never came close to getting a hit against the All-Star right-hander.

"It was an easy ride," Weaver said.

Phil Humber of the Chicago White Sox threw a perfect game at Seattle on April 21.

Weaver (4-0), a California native who played at Long Beach State, began the ninth by quickly retiring Jamey Carroll on a routine fly and striking out Denard Span looking.

Weaver then got Alexi Casilla to lift a long fly that right fielder Torii Hunter easily caught at the warning track. The Angels' ace watched his Gold Glove outfielder make the play, and put his hands on his head as the Angels rushed out to mob him.

"Spiderman out there. I knew he had a bead on it," Weaver said of Hunter. "Casilla put a charge in it and Spiderman tracked it down."

An inning earlier, Weaver and his teammates could only hope when Trevor Plouffe lined a shot that hooked foul a few feet before reaching the left-field foul pole.

After that, Weaver finished off the Twins in fast order.

His gem complete, Weaver hugged his wife, his dad and his mom, who was crying on the field.

"I was locked in for the most part," he said. "My mom, dad, wife, this was awesome."

Weaver will soon get a chance to do it again against the Twins - his next start is scheduled for Monday at Minnesota.

"I'm at a loss for words right now. It hasn't kicked in yet," he said. "Thank you for all your support. Couldn't have done it without the defense. The guys were picking me up left and right."

This was the second Angels no-hitter in less than a year - Ervin Santana pitched one July 27 at Cleveland - and the 10th for the Angels franchise, including four by Nolan Ryan.

Weaver threw 121 pitches, and the cheers from the crowd of 27,288 kept growing louder.

"Fastball command was good. Able to fill up the zone get some early strikes," Weaver said.

"This is so surreal I can't even believe this," he said.

Only one Minnesota batter reached base through the first seven innings, and that was when catcher Chris Iannetta committed a passed ball on strike three to Chris Parmelee with two out in the second. Josh Willingham drew the only walk Weaver allowed with two outs in the seventh.

"He dominated us, there's no question about it," Span said. "He was doing everything. He kept us off-balance, changed speeds and finished strong."

The no-hitter was the highlight for a 29-year-old pitcher who has already compiled quite a resume.

Weaver finished second in the AL Cy Young voting last year after going 18-8 with a 2.41 ERA. He and winner Justin Verlander were the only pitchers listed on every ballot.

Kendrys Morales and Howie Kendrick homered to back Weaver, not that he needed much support.

The Angels' three-game sweep of the Twins included a complete-game three-hit shutout on Tuesday night by Jerome Williams, who retired 18 of his last 19 batters.

The Twins haven't had a hit in the last 15 innings.

It was the first time the Angels had back-to-back complete game wins since 1993 when Chuck Finley and Mark Langston did it.

The Angels built a 6-0 lead against Australian-born Liam Hendriks (0-2).

NOTES: Kendrick hit his fourth homer of the season and drove in three runs.

Complete Recap Box Score

Why coming to the Bears was the right opportunity for Harry Hiestand to leave Notre Dame

1-10harryhiestand.jpg
AP

Why coming to the Bears was the right opportunity for Harry Hiestand to leave Notre Dame

There wasn’t a single game Harry Hiestand coached while at Notre Dame — 77 in total — in which he didn’t have a future top-20 pick starting at left tackle. 

Zack Martin (16th overall, 2014) was followed by Ronnie Stanley (6th overall, 2016), who gave way to Mike McGlinchey (9th overall, 2018). Hiestand also developed Quenton Nelson, who went on to be the highest interior offensive lineman drafted (6th overall, 2018) since 1986. Nelson and McGlinchey became the first pair of college offensive line teammates to be drafted in the first 10 picks since 1991, when Tennessee had tackles Charles McRae and Antone Davis go seventh and eighth. 

“It wasn’t surprising because the kind of guys they are, they absolutely did everything the right way, the way they took care of themselves, the way they trained, the teammates that they are and were,” Hiestand said. “They just did it all the way you wanted them to do it. So it was. It was a good moment.”

Hiestand said he had a sense of pride after seeing his two former players be drafted so high, even if he wasn't able to re-unite with either of them. The Bears, of course, didn’t have a chance to draft Nelson, and had conviction on using the eighth overall pick on linebacker Roquan Smith (as well as having tackles Charles Leno and Bobby Massie in place for the 2018 season). 

Anecdotally, one former Notre Dame player said (maybe half-jokingly) that Nelson and McGlinchey were fighting each other to see who could get drafted by the Bears to play with Hiestand again.

“There’s nobody that I’ve been around in this game that’s more passionate about what he does,” McGlinchey, now with the San Francisco 49ers, said of Hiestand at Notre Dame’s pro day in March. “There’s really only two things that are important to him, and that’s his family and then his offensive linemen. There’s a lot to be said for that. 

“In this game, everybody’s always trying to work an angle to up their own career — he doesn’t want to do anything but coach O-line, and that’s what really sticks out to us as players. He cares for us like we’re his own. Obviously he coaches extremely hard and is very demanding of his players, which I loved — he pushed me to be the player that I am.

“I’m standing in front of all you guys because of Harry Hiestand. But the amount of passion and care that he has not only for his job but his teaching abilities and his players is what sets him apart.”

Hiestand could’ve stayed as long as he wanted at Notre Dame, presumably, given how much success he had recruiting and developing players there. But six years at one spot is a long time for a position coach, especially at the college level, where the grind of recruiting is so vital to the success of a program. It’s also not like every one of the blue-chip prospects Hiestand recruited to South Bend panned out, either. 

So Hiestand knew he wanted to get back to the NFL after coaching with the Bears under Lovie Smith from 2005-2009. It’s a new challenge for him now, not only to develop second-round pick James Daniels but to continue the growth of Cody Whitehair and Leno while getting the most out of Kyle Long, Massie and the rest of the group (back during his first stint with the Bears, Hiestand had the luxury of coaching experienced, more ready-made offensive lines). 

As one of the more highly-regarded offensive line coaches in the country, though, Hiestand could’ve jumped back into the NFL whenever, and nearly wherever, he wanted. And for him, coming back to the Bears was the perfect fit. 

“That’s an awesome, awesome place, a great franchise,” Hiestand said. “It was something, I always wanted to go back, I didn’t know where I would get the opportunity. So I’m just very fortunate it just happened to be back at the same place that I was before. There are a lot of things that are different but there’s also a lot that’s the same. 

“But it’s one of the — it is the greatest organization. Historically, this is where it all began, and being part of it — and the other thing, and I told those guys when I got here, when we get it done here, you guys are going to see this city like you’ve never seen it. And I remember that. That’s what we’re after.” 

On a scale of 1-10, Tarik Cohen says his dangerous level is 12

125tarikcohen.jpg
USA Today

On a scale of 1-10, Tarik Cohen says his dangerous level is 12

Don't be fooled by Tarik Cohen's height. He has towering confidence and he's setting up to have a big role in coach Matt Nagy's offense in 2018.

“On a scale of 1-10, the dangerous level is probably 12,” Cohen said Wednesday at Halas Hall about the impact he can have in the Bears' new system. “Because in backyard football, it’s really anything goes, and it’s really whoever gets tired first, that’s who’s going to lose. I’m running around pretty good out here, so I feel like I’m doing a good job.”

Cohen proved last season he can thrive in space. He made an impact as a runner, receiver and return man and will have a chance at an even bigger workload this fall, assuming he can handle it.

With Jordan Howard established as the starting running back, Cohen knows his touches will come in a variety of ways.

“It might not necessarily be rushes,” he said. “But it’s going to be all over the field, and that’s what I like to do. Any way I can get the ball or make a play for my team, that’s what I’m looking forward to doing.”

Cohen averaged 4.3 yards-per-carry as a rookie and led all NFL running backs in the percentage of carries that went for at least 15 yards. He's a big play waiting to happen.