Capitals

Pettitte and Yankees agree to $12M, 1-year deal

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Pettitte and Yankees agree to $12M, 1-year deal

NEW YORK (AP) Andy Pettitte needed little time to decide that he wanted to return for another season with the New York Yankees.

The arm felt strong. His family was on board for at least one more year and he felt there was a real chance of adding another World Series title to his collection.

With nothing to hold him back, the lefty agreed to a one-year deal with the Yankees worth $12 million on Wednesday, putting baseball's biggest postseason winner back in pinstripes.

``I think we're good enough to go all the way, I really do,'' Pettitte said on a conference call. ``I'm at the point where, if I didn't feel like we had a chance to win it deep down, I wouldn't do this. I feel like we've got a certain group of guys that are still there and that know how to win and know how to get it done, and we can go do that.''

The five-time World Series champion turns 41 in June. He retired after the 2010 season to spend more time at home but then decided to come back this year - while working as an instructor during spring training - and signed a contract guaranteeing him $2.5 million.

His new contract includes several award bonuses: $1 million for winning the Cy Young Award, $1 million for World Series MVP and $500,000 for league championship series MVP.

Pettitte went 5-4 with a 2.87 ERA in 12 starts. He missed almost three months because of a broken lower left leg, sustained when he was hit by a line drive off the bat of Cleveland's Casey Kotchman on June 27.

``I definitely think that if I would have pitched a full season and thrown 200 innings, that I definitely wouldn't feel as fresh and physically feel as good as I do right now,'' Pettitte said. ``Obviously, I feel like that helped lead me to a quick decision.''

Pettitte's signing was the Yankees' second move to solidify their rotation in about a week. New York gave Hiroki Kuroda a $15 million, one-year contract to return.

The AL East champions are set to start 2013 with the same rotation as last season: CC Sabathia, Kuroda, Pettitte, Phil Hughes and Ivan Nova or David Phelps.

Next up for general manager Brian Cashman could be a contract for 43-year-old closer Mariano Rivera, who is determined to come back after tearing a knee ligament in May while shagging flies during batting practice.

A reliable No. 2 starter throughout his career, Pettitte is 245-142 with the Yankees and Houston in 17 major league seasons. He is the winningest pitcher in postseason history at 19-11.

A member of the ``Core Four'' along with Derek Jeter, Rivera and Jorge Posada, Pettitte helped the Yankees win World Series titles in 1996, 1998, 1999, 2000 and 2009.

The Yankees designated catcher Eli Whiteside for assignment to make room for Pettitte on the 40-man roster. The 33-year-old Whiteside was claimed off waivers from San Francisco on Nov. 5.

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Capitals stars react to losing Barry Trotz as head coach

Capitals stars react to losing Barry Trotz as head coach

LAS VEGAS—Alex Ovechkin and Nicklas Backstrom weren’t expecting to lose their head coach less than two weeks after winning the Stanley Cup.

But business is business, Ovi said, and Barry Trotz is handling his by attempting to capitalize on claiming the championship.

“It’s sad,” Ovechkin said on the red carpet at the NHL Awards, where he accepted his seventh Maurice “Rocket” Richard Trophy on Wednesday night. “Obviously, we won together.”

The Caps’ captain also thanked Trotz for directing him—and his teammates—to new heights.  

“First of all, [I want to] thank him for a great job to be our coach, to be our dad, to give us a chance to win,” Ovechkin said. “But then again, it’s a business. You never know what’s going to happen. I’m pretty sure he’s going to be fine and I wish him luck.”

Backstrom, meanwhile, said he was caught off guard by Trotz’s decision to step down over a contract stalemate with the team. Trotz asked for $5 million per for five seasons; the Caps balked over the terms Trotz’s camp sought.   

“I was a little surprised, obviously,” Backstrom said. “I heard the scenario.”

Like Ovechkin, though, Backstrom praised the job Trotz did during his four-year tenure.

“He’s done a great job in Washington,” Backstrom said. “We obviously have him to thank for a lot. He’s done a tremendous job of schooling us and winning a championship. No one is going to take that away from him.”

Trotz’s next move is unclear, but he’s a free agent and currently eligible to negotiate with any team. The Islanders are the only team with an opening for a head coach.

As for Washington, GM Brian MacLellan said that associate coach Todd Reirden will get the first crack at replacing Trotz.

Ovechkin said he thinks Reirden would be a good fit.

“We all respect Todd,” Ovechkin said. “We all like him. Again, it’s not our thing to say who’s going to be head coach, but if it’s going to be Todd, it’s going to be fun.”

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A drawing of the moment Ovi lifted the Stanley Cup makes the moment joyful all over again

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Daniel Duffy on Twitter/@RealArtOfWords

A drawing of the moment Ovi lifted the Stanley Cup makes the moment joyful all over again

How do you make a photo of Alex Ovechkin hoisting the Stanley Cup for the first time even more memorable?

You make it out of all the Capitals' game scores this year, of course.

Capitals fan and artist Daniel Duffy (@RealArtOfWords) posted a phenomenal finished piece commemorating the Cup win on Wednesday, June 20. It's a little meta and astounding to look at, but very fun to try and read. If you want to relive the glory that was the parts of the 2017-18 Capitals season, check out the piece.

The piece, which appears to be done in a traditional medium like pen or marker, holds the team faced, arena played at, and final score of every game. It uses six colors and over sixty lines of text. Ovechkin roars as he holds the Stanley Cup overhead, the white away jersey shaded with bits of grey text. It takes a skilled eye to sort text and colors into shapes and shading, but Daniel did a fantastic job! It's awesome to see a fanbase create different interpretations of iconic moments. We'll surely see more of Ovechkin in this moment.

Just as we thought we were going to get tired of the celebration, fans find new ways to surprise us. Stay creative, Caps fans!

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