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Houston native Anthony Rendon says Astros' cheating 'stung a little bit different'

Houston native Anthony Rendon says Astros' cheating 'stung a little bit different'

Members of the Los Angeles Angels addressed the media at Spring Training for the first time on Monday, which meant former National Anthony Rendon had his first opportunity to address the Houston Astros sign-stealing scandal.

As previously reported by the Washington Post, Rendon confirmed that the Nationals were aware of the Astros’ tactics ahead of the World Series. The Houston native said Washington had a sense of what every team was doing, but what the Astros were doing "stung a little bit different.”

"We were aware of it,” Rendon said. “We were aware of it throughout the entirety of the playoffs. We kind of have a sense of what teams were doing what, and so we can kind of just get a feel of what they might be doing."

Rendon, of course, played a major role throughout the regular season and playoffs as the Nationals battled to secure their first World Series title in franchise history. Coming off his best career season, he then signed a seven-year, $245 million contract with the Angels as a free agent this offseason.

The past year has been quite the ride for Rendon, which perhaps is why he was also more forgiving of the Astros than others around baseball. Rendon said he hasn’t lost respect for the team, though “you can definitely view them differently.”

“Everyone’s quick to hammer them down and just kill them,” Rendon said. “But at the end of the day, we’ve got to look at ourselves in the mirror, and we’re not perfect people. Whether it’s a speeding ticket or whatever it might be, some of us are trying to get an edge some way or another in life. They happened to get caught for doing it. You can forgive them, but doesn’t mean you have to forget.”

Rendon's new teammate and the best player in baseball, Mike Trout, was not as forgiving. He thought there should have been more punishment for the Astros, a team the Angels face often as AL West division foes.

"It's sad for baseball," Trout said. "It's tough. They cheated. I don't agree with the punishments, the players not getting anything. It was a player-driven thing. It sucks, too, because guys' careers have been affected, a lot of people lost jobs. It was tough. Me going up to the plate knowing what was coming -- it would be pretty fun up there."

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Redskins sign former Panthers special teamer Jared Norris

Redskins sign former Panthers special teamer Jared Norris

The Redskins have signed free-agent linebacker Jared Norris, the team announced Thursday.

Norris, 26, spent the first three years of his career with the Carolina Panthers after going undrafted out of Utah. He played under new Redskins coach Ron Rivera from 2016 to 2018 before being cut prior to last season.

After playing in a career-high 14 games (no starts) as a rookie, Norris played in just 14 games combined the next two seasons due to injuries. He has 11 career tackles and all of his snaps have been on special teams.

Norris' signing follows a trend of former Rivera employees either signing with or being linked to the Redskins this offseason.

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Darryll Pines named Wallace Loh's replacement as Maryland president

Darryll Pines named Wallace Loh's replacement as Maryland president

Darryll J. Pines, PhD,  was named University of Maryland, College Park's newest president on Wednesday, succeeding Wallace D. Loh, who announced his planned retirement in 2018 following the death of Terps football player Jordan McNair.

Pines is a dean and professor at Maryland, first arriving at the university in 1995 as an assistant professor. He’ll begin his tenure as the 34th president at College Park on July 1.

“I’ve known him as an outstanding teacher, a dedicated mentor, a brilliant researcher, and an extraordinary leader,” University System of Maryland chancellor Jay A. Perman, MD said of Pines in a statement. “It’s fitting -- and gratifying -- that UMD will be led by a member of its own family, by someone who knows so well its people and programs, its considerable strengths and enormous potential.”

Loh had been president since November 2010 but in October 2018 announced his eventual retirement after the football program drew criticism for allegations of abuse and the circumstances surrounding the death of the 19-year-old McNair.

That same day in October, the University System of Maryland Board of Regents decided that football coach DJ Durkin would return from the August leave of absence he had been placed on. Against the board’s wishes, Loh fired Durkin the next day. Maryland hired Mike Locksley as its new coach later that year.

Loh initially was supposed to remain as president only until the end of the 2019 school year, but it was later announced he would stay on through June 2020 while the university searched for a successor. Officials believed his continued leadership in the wake of the football scandal would help with athletic reforms among other things.

“I’m deeply grateful to UMD President Wallace D. Loh, PhD, JD, for his decade of exceptional service to the university, for his committed work in moving UMD into the top tier of the nation’s public research universities, and for positioning the institution for still greater success to come,” Perman said in his statement.

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