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Reyes says Loria told him he would stay in Miami

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Reyes says Loria told him he would stay in Miami

TORONTO (AP) Jose Reyes was in a hotel room in the Middle East when he received the surprising news: He had been traded from the downsizing Miami Marlins to the bulking-up Toronto Blue Jays.

``I went to Dubai on vacation with my wife,'' Reyes said Thursday in his first public comments about the Nov. 19 deal. ``One day I got up at 6 in the morning and I see all these text messages saying `You got traded.' That kind of surprised me a little bit.''

Reyes left the New York Mets as a free agent after the 2011 to sign a $106 million, six-year contracts with the Marlins, who boosted their payroll as they prepared to move into a new retractable-roof ballpark in downtown Miami. But after fading from contention en route to a last-place finish, the Marlins sold off their stars.

The move was surprising to Reyes, given a conversation he had just had with owner Jeffrey Loria.

``Five days before I got traded I was with the owner of the Miami Marlins and he said he was never going to trade me,'' Reyes recalled.

Like his Miami teammates, Reyes didn't have a no-trade provision. Telephone conversations with new teammates and fellow Dominicans Jose Bautista and Edwin Encarnacion soothed any concerns.

``After that I said, `It's a better opportunity with the Blue Jays,''' Reyes said. ``It's all about winning and the team we're going to put on the field is going to be good.''

Reyes was dealt with pitchers Mark Buehrle and Josh Johnson, catcher John Buck and outfielder Emilio Bonifacio and $8.5 million to Toronto for infielders Yunel Escobar and Adeiny Hechavarria, catcher Jeff Mathis, right-handers Henderson Alvarez, and Anthony DeSclafani, left-hander Justin Nicolino and outfielder Jake Marisnick.

``He's the type of guy you want to come and see play, he's electric,'' Toronto general manager Alex Anthopoulos said. ``This is a rare guy to find. Leadoff, shortstop, energy, makeup, you can check off every single box. I don't know that there's another shortstop like him. I think any GM would love to have him.''

Anthopoulos called Reyes ``probably my favorite player in the league.''

``You can't help but admire what he brings and what he does,'' Anthopoulos said. ``From that standpoint, the opportunity to get him in trade, we jumped at it. We felt we were pretty deep at shortstop but we've never seen a guy like this.

``I don't know that we're going to see another shortstop like this in Toronto for a long time. This is one of the great players to play the game and the fact that he's got a chance to be in Toronto for the next five or six years is so exciting.''

Anthopoulos had made starting pitching his priority.

``We weren't going to go anywhere if we didn't improve the rotation,'' he said.

He addressed that concern in the trade with the Marlins and another that sent Buck as part of a package to the New York Mets for Cy Young Award winner R.A. Dickey.

The NL batting champion in 2011 and a three-time NL stolen base champion, Reyes will be the first in a quartet of Dominican stars at the top of Toronto's order. Outfielder Melky Cabrera will likely bat second, followed by sluggers Bautista and Encarnacion.

That's made the Blue Jays as big a story in the Caribbean as they've been since the 1980s and the days of George Bell and Tony Fernandez.

``When I went to the Dominican and people saw me on the street, everybody talked about the Blue Jays,'' Reyes said. ``At least in my town, everybody is a fan of the Blue Jays now.''

Reyes is set to play for the Dominican Republic team at the World Baseball Classic, among seven Toronto players expected to take part in the tournament. Encarnacion, Cabrera and right-hander Esmil Rogers have been selected for the Dominican Republic's preliminary roster; Dickey and catcher J.P. Arencibia for the United States; and infielder Brett Lawrie for Canada.

Bautista is skipping the WBC following surgery in September to repair a left wrist injury that limited him to 92 games last season.

``The biggest thing with that is we need him ready for the season,'' Anthopoulos said.

Anthopoulos said Bautista, who feels good and has been swinging every day, hopes to play in Toronto's exhibition opener on Feb. 23 against Detroit.

That's a game Reyes is looking forward to, as well.

``I can't wait to get to spring training and start to work together,'' Reyes said. ``It's going to be a special season for the Blue Jays. The goal for us here is to go to the playoffs, go to the World Series and win. Less than that is not going to be acceptable with the kind of team that we have.''

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Bradley Beal's girlfriend Kamiah Adams announces the couple's engagement

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Instagram/@KamiahAdams

Bradley Beal's girlfriend Kamiah Adams announces the couple's engagement

The Wizards didn't play on Sunday, but Bradley Beal by far had his best day of the new year.

The 26-year-old proposed to his longtime girlfriend, Kamiah Adams, on Sunday, and Adams showed off her ring in a lengthy Instagram post.

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When we had first began dating, you helped me conquer a fear of Ferris wheels& heights... you took me to the top of the Ferris wheel in Vegas, and asked me to be your girlfriend. 4 years later, you helped me conquer the fear of opening up, being vulnerable, and not only loving someone unconditionally, but allowing myself to be loved unconditionally as well, and asked me to spend the rest of my life with you. I love you so so much. No one else id rather spend my life with. Thank you for helping me evolve into the woman I’ve become, and for constantly challenging me to become better each and everyday. I did then, I do now, and I will FOREVER. YES YES YES!!!!!!!!!!! 💍🥰 🥺🥺😩😍

A post shared by Kamiah Adams (@kamiahadams) on

"When we had first began dating, you helped me conquer a fear of Ferris wheels & heights... you took me to the top of the Ferris wheel in Vegas, and asked me to be your girlfriend," Adams wrote. "4 years later, you helped me conquer the fear of opening up, being vulnerable, and not only loving someone unconditionally, but allowing myself to be loved unconditionally as well, and asked me to spend the rest of my life with you. I love you so so much. No one else id rather spend my life with. Thank you for helping me evolve into the woman I’ve become, and for constantly challenging me to become better each and everyday. I did then, I do now, and I will FOREVER. YES YES YES!!!!!!!!!!!"

The couple has two kids together, both of which are boys. Their first son, Bradley Jr., was born in July of 2018, and their second son, Braylon, was born this past August.

Congrats to Brad and Kamiah!

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Scott Turner won the Redskins offensive coordinator job over Kevin O'Connell, per source

Scott Turner won the Redskins offensive coordinator job over Kevin O'Connell, per source

There has been plenty of speculation as to why new Redskins head coach Ron Rivera decided to hire Scott Turner as offensive coordinator, and now a source tells NBC Sports Washington the answer is simple. 

Turner won the job competition. 

Many expected 2019 Redskins offensive coordinator Kevin O'Connell to maintain his position when the team hired Rivera as their new head coach earlier this month. That didn't happen. 

As Rivera moved quickly to assemble his coaching staff, the biggest question seemed to be running the offense and working with second-year quarterback Dwayne Haskins. Rivera interviewed O'Connell and Turner for the job, and asked to interview former Giants head coach Pat Shurmur. 

Shurmur declined the interview, and at that point, a source explained that Rivera then made his decision to go with Turner over O'Connell. 

So why Turner? 

Both candidates got their first experience calling plays last year after an in-season firing to the head coach. The results weren't great for either coach, but Turner's game plans involved more play action passing than O'Connell. 

Turner's resume working with Cam Newton and Teddy Bridgewater mattered, as did the plan Turner presented for working with Haskins. 

It's important to note that Rivera had years of experience working with Turner, as well as his father Norv Turner. That mattered too, and one source explained Rivera "believed" in Turner. 

While O'Connell landed in a strong spot as offensive coordinator for the Rams, he won't be calling plays. Coaches don't like giving up control, particularly offensive coaches giving up play calling. For O'Connell, maybe that will change in LA, but it will take time. 

Some Redskins fans have a bad habit of assuming the worst. That maybe Turner got the job because O'Connell passed on it. That's not the case, per multiple sources.

Ron Rivera wanted his guy, and that's why Turner got the job. 

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