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Archive for April 27th, 2018

Blue Jackets’ free agent Thomas Vanek wants to stay in Columbus; feels team is close to future deep playoff run



Thomas Vanek CBJ RW 2017-18 Season wrapup interview April 2018

Thomas Vanek talking to media during season ending exit interviews ( photo)

CBJ RW Thomas Vanek was a huge acquisition for the Blue Jackets at the annual trade deadline. He came over from Vancouver for Jussi Jokinen and Tyler Motte. A goal scorer, the native of Austria, in 19 games for Columbus, scored 7 goals, 8 assists for 15 points. Had his 11th career hat trick at Edmonton on March 27. Has played in over 900 NHL games and has over 700 NHL points. He is free agent and would love to stick with the Blue Jackets.

The 34-year-old Vanek, a native of Vienna, Austria, has been around the NHL. He has played for Buffalo, The Islanders, Montreal, Minnesota, Detroit and Florida.

He is 6’2, 218-pounds and has 357 goals, 396 assists. Vanek has been in the NHL since the 2005-2006 season.

Awards and honors (from wikipedia)

Award Year
All-USHL First Team 2001–02
All-WCHA Rookie Team 2002–03
All-WCHA Second Team 2002–03
All-NCAA All-Tournament Team 2003
All-WCHA Second Team 2003–04
AHCA West Second-Team All-American 2003–04
NHL YoungStars Game 2006–07
NHL Plus-Minus Award 2006–07
NHL Second All-Star Team 2006–07
NHL All Star Game 2009
NHL Leader in Power Play Goals (20) 2008–09


American League Co-Players of the Week, Orioles’ Machado, A’s ‘No-hit’ lefty Manaea



Manny Machado adjusting helmet 2017 photo By Keith Allison from Hanover, MD, USA, CC BY-SA 2.0, https

Sean Maaea pitching to the plate 2016 photo By Jrchun - Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0, https

Baltimore Orioles shortstop Manny Machado and Oakland Athletics starting pitcher Sean Manaea have been named the American League Co-Players of the Week presented by W.B. Mason for the period ending April 22nd.

In recognition of their American League Co-Players of the Week Awards, both Manny Machado and Sean Manaea will be awarded a watch courtesy of Rockwell.

Machado posted a slash line of .500/.560/1.273 with seven runs scored, 11 hits, two doubles, five home runs and eight RBI over six games played to earn his fourth career AL Player of the Week Award, last winning for the period ending August 20, 2017. Among his AL counterparts, the three-time All-Star finished his award-winning week first in home runs, slugging percentage and total bases (28); second in extra-base hits (7); third in batting average; tied for third in hits and RBI; and fourth in on-base percentage. Machado, a recipient of two career Gold Gloves at third base, enters play today in the midst of a 10-game hitting streak dating back to April 11th. Overall, the right-handed-hitting slugger has played in every Orioles game thus far, recording at least one hit in 18 of 22 contests. During his strong week at the plate, the 25-year-old notched three multi-hit games, as well as a pair of multi-homer games (April 19th & April 22nd). Machado is now tied for sixth all-time in multi-home run games by a right-handed batter at age 25-or-younger (17) with Hall of Famers Joe DiMaggio and Ralph Kiner. Hall of Famers Jimmie Foxx and Willie Mays, as well as Bob Horner and Alex Rodriguez, pace the distinguished group with 19 multi-homer efforts, while five-time All-Star Andruw Jones posted 18 such games.

On Saturday night against the Boston Red Sox at the Oakland Coliseum, Manaea tossed the seventh no-hitter in Oakland history and the 12th in franchise history. It was the first no-hitter in the Majors since Edinson Vólquez recorded his no-no for the Miami Marlins on June 3rd of last season, and the first for the A’s since Dallas Braden’s perfect game on May 9, 2010 (Mother’s Day) against the Tampa Bay Rays. Entering Saturday’s tilt against the A’s, the Red Sox owned a 17-2 (.895) record and paced the Majors in runs per game (6.5). According to the Elias Sports Bureau, Oakland’s Dave Stewart, who shut down the Toronto Blue Jays on June 29, 1990, was the last pitcher to log a no-hitter against a team that led Baseball in runs per game. In addition, Boston possessed the highest winning percentage of any team to be no hit in Major League history with a minimum of five games played. The Indiana native needed just 108 pitches to complete his outing and logged a season-best 10 punchouts. The left-hander became the third pitcher in franchise history to log at least 10 strikeouts in a no-hitter, joining Stewart (1990) and Hall of Famer Catfish Hunter (1968). Sean is the first A’s hurler to claim weekly honors since Sonny Gray on September 29, 2014.

Other noteworthy performances last week included third baseman Miguel Andújar (.550, 5 R, 6 2B, 7 RBI) and All-Star starting pitcher Luis Severino (2-0, 0.69 ERA, 13.0 IP, 14 SO) of the New York Yankees; All-Star outfielder Mookie Betts (.400, 7 R, 4 HR, 1.050 SLG) of the Red Sox; All-Star shortstop Carlos Correa (.542, 5 R, 13 H, 7 RBI) of the Houston Astros; and starting pitcher Blake Snell (2-0, 1.35 ERA, 13.1 IP, 15 SO) of the Rays.


Read more: MLB


Diamondbacks lefty Patrick Corbin named NL Player of the Week



Patrick Corbin pitching to the plate 2013 photo by Not That Bob James on Flickr via wikipedia commons

Arizona Diamondbacks starting pitcher Patrick Corbin has been named the National League Player of the Week presented by W.B. Mason for the period ending April 22nd.

In recognition of his National League Player of the Week Award, Patrick Corbin will be awarded a watch courtesy of Rockwell.

Also under consideration was Puerto Rico native Javier Báez (.480, 7 R, 7 XBH, 9 RBI) was also impressive last week for the Chicago Cubs. On Friday night against the Rockies, the 25-year-old matched his career best with four hits, including a double, home run and four RBI. The 2016 NLCS Co-MVP became the first Cubs second baseman since at least 1913 to reach the six-homer mark before the end of April, besting the previous record of five round-trippers set by Hall of Famers Ryne Sandberg (1996) and Rogers Hornsby (1931). In addition, his 20 RBI are the most by a second baseman in team history before the end of April. Other noteworthy performances last week included All-Star starting pitcher Johnny Cueto (1-0, 0.00 ERA, 13.0 IP, 18 SO) of the Giants; 2015 All-Star backstop Yasmani Grandal (.333, 5 R, 4 2B, 11 RBI) and the aforementioned Ryu (2-0, 1.38 ERA, 13.0 IP, 17 SO) of the Dodgers; two-time All-Star second baseman Asdrúbal Cabrera (.440, 4 R, 5 XBH, 7 RBI) of the New York Mets; and Christian Villanueva (.476, 6 R, 10 H, 5 RBI) of the Padres.

In two starts last week, Corbin posted a 2-0 record while allowing two earned runs over 15.0 innings pitched to claim his first career Player of the Week Award, and the first for a D-backs pitcher since his rotation-mate Robbie Ray on August 21, 2016. The 2013 All-Star tallied 19 strikeouts and issued just two free passes along with three hits in his pair of dominant starts last week. Patrick paced the Majors in innings pitched and strikeouts, and was one of two qualified NL pitchers to register two wins (also Hyun-Jin Ryu of the Los Angeles Dodgers).

On April 17th against the San Francisco Giants at Chase Field, Corbin tossed his first career complete-game shutout and fourth complete game. The left-hander allowed just two baserunners via one walk and hit, and needed just 100 pitches to complete his dominant one-hitter. Corbin’s gem marked the first home shutout by a lefty hurler since Hall of Famer Randy Johnson’s outing on September 14, 2003 against the Colorado Rockies. According to the Elias Sports Bureau, Corbin, who held the Giants hitless through 7.2 innings, became just the fourth pitcher in Club history to open a game with 7.2-or-more hitless innings. Johnson (May 18, 2004 at Atlanta) and Edwin Jackson (June 25, 2010 at Tampa Bay) each recorded no-hitters in their outstanding starts, while Andy Benes took a no-hitter into ninth inning before yielding his first hit on September 13, 1998 at Cincinnati. In the second outing of his award-winning week on Sunday against the San Diego Padres, the New York native earned his fourth win of the season after tossing 6.0 innings of two-run ball with just two hits allowed and 11 strikeouts. With the victory in yesterday’s contest, Patrick is 4-0 and off to his best start since beginning his 2013 All-Star campaign 9-0. In addition, Corbin is the only pitcher in the Majors this season to record at least eight strikeouts in each of his first five starts. His streak of five such games to begin a season is tied for third-longest in D-backs history with Curt Schilling (2001), and trails Johnson, who posted a streak of 15 games to begin the 2000 season and seven games to begin the 1999 campaign. The “Big Unit” earned the NL Cy Young Award in each season.


Read more: MLB

NFL, Amazon announce renewal of Thursday Night Football streaming partnership



Thursday Night Football to be streamed globally​ during the 2018 & 2019 Seasons to over 100 million Amazon Prime members

The National Football League (NFL) announced today it has reached an agreement to renew its exclusive partnership with Amazon Prime Video to deliver a live OTT digital stream of Thursday Night FootballPresented by Bud Light to a global audience across devices during the 2018 and 2019 NFL Seasons. Amazon Prime will stream the 11 Thursday Night Football games broadcast by FOX, which will also be simulcast on NFL Network and distributed in Spanish on FOX Deportes, once again securing the league’s “Tri-Cast” model of broadcast (FOX), cable (NFL Network, FOX Deportes), and digital (Amazon Prime Video) distribution.

The Thursday Night Football games will be made available to the over 100 million Amazon Prime members worldwide in over 200 countries and territories, on the Prime Video app for TVs, game consoles, and connected devices, which includes Amazon Fire TV, mobile devices and online. Thursday Night Football on Prime Video will provide members a unique viewing experience complete with interactive features that bring fans closer to the game. The TNF games will also be available to Twitch viewers. The NFL and Amazon will also collaborate on additional NFL content opportunities and enhanced fan viewing experiences, including making the games available on Twitch’s interactive social video service.

“Amazon was a tremendous partner for Thursday Night Football in 2017 and as we continue our mission of delivering NFL games to fans whether they watch on television or on digital platforms, we are excited to work with them again for the next two seasons,” said Brian Rolapp, Chief Media and Business Officer for the NFL.  “Having over 100 million Amazon Prime members provides a massive platform to distribute Thursday Night Football digitally, not only to our fans in the United States but also around the world.”

“Our customers love to stream football — last year, we successfully debuted NFL Thursday Night Football on Prime Video in the U.S. and around the world,” said Jeff Blackburn, Senior Vice President Business Development & Entertainment at Amazon.  “We’re thrilled to continue our relationship with the NFL and offer Prime members another two seasons of Thursday Night Football.”​

The NFL and Amazon first partnered for distribution of Thursday Night Football during the 2017 season. In January, FOX Sports was awarded a five-year deal for Thursday Night Football that includes games between Weeks 4-15 (excluding Thanksgiving night) to be broadcast on FOX, simulcast via NFL Network and distributed in Spanish on FOX Deportes.

The multiyear renewal continues a strong partnership between the NFL and Amazon which, in addition to Thursday Night Football, also features the Emmy-winning Prime Original Series All or Nothing. Produced by NFL Films, season three of the docuseries will launch on Friday, April 27 with All or Nothing: The Dallas Cowboys.

Presented by Bud Light, the 13-game Thursday Night Football schedule for the 2018 season features 11 games on FOX/NFL Network/FOX Deportes and Amazon, and two NFL Network exclusive games.

The 2018 Thursday Night Football schedule kicks off Week 2 when the Baltimore Ravens visit the Cincinnati Bengals on Thursday, September 13 in an AFC North divisional matchup exclusively on NFL Network. The 2018 Thursday Night Football slate of games on FOX/NFL Network/FOX Deportes and Amazon begins Week 4 when the Los Angeles Rams host the Minnesota Vikings on Thursday, September 27 in a matchup of two playoff teams from 2017. All Thursday Night Football games will kick off at 8:20 PM ET.

The NFL is the most valuable content in all of sports and entertainment with nine of television’s 10 most-watched programs of the calendar year in 2017. Thursday Night Football is a top-5 show in all of television and the No. 2 show in primetime.

For more information about Thursday Night Football, including ways to watch, visit:

About Thursday Night Football

Thursday Night Football started in 2006 with an eight-game schedule exclusively on NFL Network. By 2012, Thursday Night Football had grown to a 13-game schedule exclusively on NFL Network, where it remained through the 2013 season. For the 2014 and 2015 seasons, CBS partnered with NFL Network to present an expanded 16-game Thursday Night Football schedule. For the 2016 and 2017 seasons, NBC and CBS partnered with NFL Network to present Thursday Night Football with additional digital distribution via Twitter (2016 season) and Amazon (2017 season). In January 2018, it was announced FOX Sports would produce Thursday Night Football for the next five seasons.​

2018 National Football League First Round Breakdown




​QUINTET OF QBS: Five quarterbacks – Oklahoma’s BAKER MAYFIELD (No. 1 overall, Cleveland), USC’s SAM DARNOLD (No. 3, New York Jets), Wyoming’s JOSH ALLEN (No. 7, Buffalo), UCLA’s JOSH ROSEN (No. 10, Arizona) and Louisville’s LAMAR JACKSON (No. 32, Baltimore) – were selected in the first round of the 2018 NFL Draft.

It marks the third time that at least five quarterbacks have been selected in the Draft’s opening round since the inception of the common draft in 1967. The 1983 NFL Draft holds the record with six quarterbacks selected in the first round, including Pro Football Hall of Famers JOHN ELWAYJIM KELLY and DAN MARINO.

The four quarterbacks selected in the top ten – Mayfield, Darnold, Allen and Rosen – are the most in a single draft since the inception of the common draft era in 1967.

(since 1967)

1983 6 (John Elway*, Todd Blackledge, Jim Kelly*, Tony Eason, Ken O’Brien, Dan Marino*)
2018 5 (Baker Mayfield, Sam Darnold, Josh Allen, Josh Rosen, Lamar Jackson)
1999 5 (Tim Couch, Donovan McNabb, Akili Smith, Daunte Culpepper, Cade McNown)
*Pro Football Hall of Famer

– 2018 NFL DRAFT –

HEISMAN QBS: The Cleveland Browns selected Oklahoma QB BAKER MAYFIELD with the first overall pick and the Baltimore Ravens chose Louisville quarterback LAMAR JACKSON with the 32nd overall pick of the 2018 NFL Draft.

Mayfield, who won the Heisman in 2017, and Jackson, who won the award in 2016, are the third pair of Heisman Trophy winning quarterbacks to be selected in the same draft since 1967.

(since 1967)


2018 Baker Mayfield Oklahoma 1 Cleveland
Lamar Jackson Louisville 32 Baltimore
2015 Jameis Winston Florida State 1 Tampa Bay
  Marcus Mariota Oregon 2 Tennessee
2010 Sam Bradford Oklahoma 1 St. Louis
  Tim Tebow Florida 25 Denver

– 2018 NFL DRAFT –

FOOTBALL IS FAMILY: LB TREMAINE EDMUNDS (No. 16, Buffalo) and S TERRELL EDMUNDS (No. 28, Pittsburgh) are the first pair of brothers to be selected in the first round of the same NFL Draft.

Tremaine and Terrell’s brother, TREY EDMUNDS, is a running back for the New Orleans Saints. Their father, FERRELL EDMUNDS, was a two-time Pro Bowl selection at tight end during his seven-year NFL career with the Miami Dolphins and Seattle Seahawks.

– 2018 NFL DRAFT –

TOP BACKS: The New York Giants selected Penn State RB SAQUON BARKLEY with the second choice of the 2018 NFL Draft. Barkley’s selection marks the third consecutive draft in which a running back was chosen in the top five, tied for the third-longest such streak in the common draft era.

Barkley is the highest running back selected since REGGIE BUSH in 2006 (No. 2 overall, New Orleans).


(SINCE 1967)

5 1974-78
4 1998-2001
3 2016-18*
3 1993-95
*Active streak

– 2018 NFL DRAFT –

TEAMMATES IN THE TRENCHES: Notre Dame offensive linemen QUENTON NELSON (No. 6, Indianapolis) and MIKE MC GLINCHEY (No. 9, San Francisco) are the third pair of offensive line teammates from the same college to each be selected in the top ten of the NFL Draft since 1967.

(since 1967)

2018 Quenton Nelson Notre Dame 6 Indianapolis
Mike McGlinchey Notre Dame 9 San Francisco
1991 Charles McRae Tennessee 7 Tampa Bay
  Antone Davis Tennessee 8 Philadelphia
1968 Ron Yary* USC 1 Minnesota
  Mike Taylor USC 10 Pittsburgh
*Pro Football Hall of Famer


– 2018 NFL DRAFT –

BOOMING BUCKEYES: Ohio State CB DENZEL WARD was selected by the Cleveland Browns with the fourth overall pick of the 2018 NFL Draft, marking the fifth Buckeye defensive back to be drafted in the first round since 2016.

Ohio State becomes the first school in the common draft era to have five defensive backs selected in the first round over a three-year span.


2018 Denzel Ward 4 Cleveland
2017 Marshon Lattimore 11 New Orleans
2017 Malik Hooker 15 Indianapolis
2017 Gareon Conley 24 Oakland
2016 Eli Apple 10 New York Giants


– 2018 NFL DRAFT –

ROLL TIDE: Alabama DB MINKAH FITZPATRICK (No. 11 overall, Miami), DT DA’RON PAYNE (No. 13, Washington), LB RASHAAN EVANS (No. 22, Tennessee) and WR CALVIN RIDLEY (No. 26, Atlanta) were each selected in the first round of the 2018 NFL Draft.

The Crimson Tide, who have had at least one player selected in the first round in each of the past 10 drafts, passed Florida (1983-91) for the second-longest consecutive streak of players drafted in the first round since the advent of the common draft in 1967.

Miami (1995-2008) holds the longest streak with 14 consecutive drafts having at least one player selected in the first round.



1995-2008 Miami 14
2009-2018 Alabama 10*
1983-1991 Florida 9
*Active streak

– 2018 NFL DRAFT –

QUICK HITS: Other items of note from tonight’s first round…

  • USC’s SAM DARNOLD and UCLA’s JOSH ROSEN became the first pair of quarterbacks from the same conference to be selected in the top ten since the 2012 NFL Draft (Robert Griffin III and Ryan Tannehill of the Big 12).
  • North Carolina State DE BRADLEY CHUBB (No. 5 overall, Denver) is the third player in school history to be selected with a top-five pick in the common draft era, joining DE Mario Williams (No. 1, 2006) and QB Philip Rivers (No. 4, 2004).
  • Georgia’s ROQUAN SMITH was selected eighth overall by the Chicago Bears. Smith became the fifth defensive player from Georgia to be selected with a top-ten pick in the common draft era, joining Leonard Floyd (2016), Johnathan Sullivan (2003), Richard Seymour (2001) and Champ Bailey (1999).
  • Tackles MIKE MC GLINCHEY (No. 9 overall, San Francisco) and KOLTON MILLER (No. 15, Oakland) were both selected in the first round. At least two offensive tackles have been selected in the first round of 12 consecutive NFL Drafts and in 27 of the past 28 drafts dating back to 1991.
  • With the selections of Arkansas C FRANK RAGNOW (No. 20 overall, Detroit) and Ohio State C BILLY PRICE (No. 21, Cincinnati), the 2018 NFL Draft marks the fifth time in NFL Draft history that multiple centers were selected in the first round of a single draft and the first time since 2009 (Alex Mack and Eric Wood).
  • San Diego State RB RASHAAD PENNY (No. 27 overall, Seattle) is the second running back in school history to be selected in the first round of the NFL Draft in the common draft era, joining Pro Football Hall of Famer MARSHALL FAULK, who was selected No. 2 overall by Indianapolis in 1994.
  • UCF DB MIKE HUGHES (No. 30 overall, Minnesota) is the first defensive player in school history to be selected in the first round of the NFL Draft.

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