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jcy123 Offline

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13.02.2019 07:55
October baseball game since a Ricky Ledee blast for the 1999 Yankees. And isnt it funny how one fortuitous swing of the bat can Antworten

CHICAGO -- It was kind of like Anatoly Karpov versus Magnus Carlsen, except with 42,000 chess geniuses second-guessing every move. Heres what actually unfolded at Wrigley Field on a madcap Saturday night:It was that longtime October grandmaster Joe Maddon versus Dave Roberts, the bold new tactician on the postseason block, with Game 1 of the National League Championship Series riding on every piece they zig-zagged around the Wrigley chess board.And since the scoreboard said this thing turned out Cubs 8, Dodgers 4, the baseball gods will no doubt override the chess gods and declare Maddon the winner of this feverish duel. But did the winning manager really outmaneuver the losing manager? Even he wasnt exactly sure.Now that, Maddon said, laughing, on his way out of the postgame interview room, was some crazy s---.But before we get into just how crazy -- between the surprising hook for an ace starter, two eminently second-guessable intentional walks, the 10 relief pitchers who showed up on the mound and much, much more -- we need to interject this important announcement:This, ladies and gentlemen, was only the beginning. What we have here, in this NLCS, is two managers who have already shown us they dont believe there is any such thing as normal managing. Especially this time of year.So if you get a charge out of second-guessing, if youve always wanted to see just how upside-down a baseball game could get when two bold, creative, outside-the-box managers grab ahold of it and wont let go, then youre going to find the next week pretty awesome.And if you dont, well, you cant say we didnt warn you.But now back to the barrage of strategic moves they trotted out in this game. If they made your head hurt, you can take solace in this: You werent alone. Cubs catcher David Ross admitted his head was pounding, too, as the late-inning maneuvers kept coming.I just didnt know if it was because I was thinking along with Joe, Ross joked, or a couple of foul balls to the mask.In the end, the Cubs won this game because Miguel Montero marched off their bench and had a Matt Stairs moment, mashing a game-winning, eighth-inning pinch grand slam deep into the Chicago night. On an 0-2 pitch, naturally. Which was thrown by reliever Joe Blanton, a guy who hadnt given up a slam in more than six years.But until the moment Montero swung his bat and everything changed, the chess fans at Wrigley were clearly starting to wonder if this time, for once, Maddon had overthought and overmanaged his way to a shocking come-from-ahead defeat.So lets run through the Maddon moves that sent this game spiraling in an unintended direction. It all began with his decision to pinch hit for his Game 1 starter, Jon Lester, with two outs in the sixth inning and a runner on second.Lester had a 3-1 lead at the time, had thrown only 77 pitches and had given up only a wind-blown home run to pinch hitter?Andre Ethier in the top of the sixth. Even Lester made it obvious, both at the time and afterward, that he wasnt a big fan of exiting this game. But Maddon defended it vociferously.He had a chance to add on to a two-run lead, he said. He knew he could manipulate his bullpen to force the Dodgers into burning their bench, he said. And, above all, he didnt think Lester was pitching as well as his line indicated.If Jon was on top of his game, I may not have done it, Maddon said. But I didnt think he had his best stuff tonight.Now if only pinch hitter Jorge Soler had knocked in that insurance run and if the Cubs bullpen had closed this thing out as neatly as Maddon envisioned, we wouldnt be picking apart what happened next. But that isnt how it worked out in real life, naturally.Instead, Maddon found himself in a mix-and-match bullpen parade, with five different relievers heading for the mound in the seventh and eighth innings. Which was mostly just what he had in mind -- until Mike Montgomery and Pedro Strop went and loaded the bases in the eighth. With nobody out.So that forced Maddon into a move he didnt want to make -- calling on his closer, Aroldis Chapman, to try to triple-digit his way out of this mess -- but I had no choice, the manager said. And that was especially true, he said, because Corey Seager was due to hit. And I did not want anybody to face him except Aroldis, Maddon said. That was set up from the beginning.It was all working out just fine when Chapman reared back and struck out Seager for the first out, then whooshed a 103-mile-per-hour smokeball past Yasiel Puig for the second out. But when Chapman tried to throw his 11th consecutive fastball of the inning past Adrian Gonzalez, Gonzalez roped it up the middle for a tying single -- not to mention the first hit hed ever gotten as a Dodger on a pitch thrown at 100 mph or faster.It was the second time this postseason Maddon had tried bringing in Chapman in the eighth inning -- and all he has gotten out of it is two blown saves. But the manager said hell do it again if he has to. And remember that, because he very well might have to.Because it didnt work out doesnt mean it was wrong, Maddon said.You might want to read those words again. Why? Because pretty much every manager in history has had to utter them -- if not to the media, then to himself -- at some point in his life. Its the only path to managerial sanity.But in this case, it was tough not to circle back to the decision to hook Lester -- because that move led to five other moves, which led to a tie score, which led to a very nervous Wrigley Field.Except then it was the other managers turn to start spinning the roulette wheel. So now lets train this microscope on Dave Roberts.A Ben Zobrist leadoff double in the bottom of the eighth got Roberts brainwaves stirring. And you second-guessers out there sprung back to life immediately, now didnt you?First, with Zobrist on second and one out, Roberts opted to intentionally walk Jason Heyward, he of the .230 average for the season, .224 average with men in scoring position and .133 average in the postseason -- to face the sizzling Javy Baez (8-for-19 in the postseason at that point).Obviously in that situation, Roberts said afterward, youve got to walk Heyward, with the open base.Uh, obviously? Lets just say it didnt seem quite so obvious to the masses. But whatever. It worked, when Blanton got Baez to pop to short right for the second out.But Maddon then went to his bench again and sent the left-handed Chris Coghlan up to pinch-hit for Ross. And with Chapman on deck, Roberts did something that only three other managers have done in any postseason game in the last 60 years. He intentionally walked Coghlan -- WITH BOTH FIRST AND SECOND BASE OCCUPIED -- to load the bases.According to the Elias Sports Bureau, that had happened only three other times since intentional walks were first officially tracked in 1955: The Phillies walked Buster Posey in that situation in the 2010 NLCS. Tony La Russa and the Cardinals did it with Damian Miller?in the 2001 NLDS. And, most famously, Bobby Cox had Steve Avery walk Bernie Williams in the 10th inning of Game 4 of the 1996 World Series -- right before Avery unintentionally walked Wade Boggs to force in the winning run.Asked if he could see this intentional walk to Coghlan coming from his excellent vantage point at second base, Zobrist replied, frankly: No. And I dont think THEY (the Dodgers) did either -- their players.But Roberts was adamant that it was all worth it, because he knew it would mean the Cubs were going to have to take Chapman out of this game. Considering the left-handed hitters who were due up for his team in the ninth, Roberts said, he didnt love the matchups.As the game was tied, youre trying to figure out a way to win it, Roberts said. And whats the best way to win that game? Is to get him out of the game. So, I felt that if we did that, then the game was ours.Except, as we know now, this game wasnt theirs. Left-hander Grant Dayton was warmed up. But Roberts left the right-hander, Blanton, in the game to face the left-handed hitting Montero. And, well, uh-oh.Montero teed off on a hanging slider, to mash the first pinch-hit grand slam in an October baseball game since a Ricky Ledee blast for the 1999 Yankees. And isnt it funny how one fortuitous swing of the bat can blow all that managerial logic to smithereens?Thats baseball, Roberts said. You can do the right things, but they cant always work out.But I think the process, for me, I felt really good about it. And I would do the same thing over again. Ten times out of 10, I would take Joe Blanton against Montero.Meanwhile, the winning manager was humming a similar tune. And quoting one of his big managerial mentors, Gene Mauch.Play the game three times -- before, during and after. Gene told me that many, many years ago, Maddon said. I will tomorrow, with my cup of coffee -- large, a large Americano. Ill sit there and go over this whole thing again and rehash it.But he has zero regrets, he said. Hed thought it all through before the game ever began. Hed seen these moves in his head before he ever made them. So would he spend all night watching them spring back to life in his nightmares? Maddon had no intention of cueing up the nightmares.He defended every decision. Once. Twice. Every time we asked. So then the talk turned to the decisions made by the chess king on the other side of the board. Was he surprised that Roberts issued the intentional walk that loaded the bases for Montero? Maddon smiled one more time.I probably would have done the same thing he did, he said. .Y. - General manager Billy King says the Brooklyn Nets are looking to add a big man and confirmed the team worked out centre Jason Collins, who would become the first openly gay active NBA player if signed. . There are surprises among the Vezina candidates, but most of the others are standard top-tier performers, even if the two Hart Trophy runners-ups have never been quite as good as they have been through the first half of the season. . PAUL, Minn. . The team said Saturday that Lopez was hurt during its 121-120 overtime loss at Philadelphia on Friday. The Nets said they would issue another update next week after consultation with their doctors. . Shot outdoors against the stunning backdrop of Banff, Alta., the networks 30-minute original production airs tonight at 8pm et/5pm pt on TSN2. The four All-Star teams will play for $100,000 in prize money during TSNs annual skins game, airing live this weekend on TSN from The Fenlands Banff Recreation Centre. Tiger Woods is on track to make his competitive return to golf in two weeks at the Hero World Challenge, having had time to practice and prepare recently after he aborted his expected return last month at the Safeway Open in California.Woods agent, Mark Steinberg, told ESPN on Tuesday that Woods is getting after it a bit more, continuing to work toward that goal and excited to get back out there and compete, see the guys and be in the locker room instead of being an assistant captain, as the golfer was during the U.S. Ryder Cup victory.The decision to withdraw from the Safeway event in October -- where Woods had intended to return, committed on the Friday prior and then changed his mind three days later -- was never about his determination.The determination is still there, Steinberg told ESPN. Weve still got two weeks to go, but he is doing the things necessary to get himself as ready as he can be, but its going to be 15 months since the last time he played competitively.Woods last tournament was a tie for 10th at the Wyndham Championship in August 2015. Since then, he has had two back procedures and went some six months without swinging a club.His rehabilitation was slow and deliberate, and Woods spent much of this year not publicly committing to any timetable. On Sept. 7, Woods, 40, announced a tentative return date at the Safeway Open, but said just three dayss before that my game is vulnerable and it is not where it needs to be.ddddddddddddAfter celebrating the 20th anniversary of his Tiger Woods Foundation and going on a media tour, Woods has been able to get back to work on his golf.Steinberg would not say if Woods is limited in any way -- those are questions hell answer and he can certainly give a better perspective than me; and theyll be more relevant two weeks from now -- but made clear again that his decision to skip the Safeway tournament was not related to any physical problems.The 14-time major champion will be joined at the Dec. 1-4 tournament in the Bahamas by defending champion Bubba Watson, U.S. Open winner Dustin Johnson, Open champion Henrik Stenson?and?PGA winner Jimmy Walker, as well as Jordan Spieth, Zach Johnson, Justin Rose and Matt Kuchar.Woods has won the event five times -- the last time in 2011 when it was played at Sherwood Country Club in California. He did not play in the tournament a year ago as he was just six weeks removed from a second back procedure.The 18-man tournament is considered unofficial on the PGA Tour, but it does award World Ranking points. Not competing for more than a year has taken a toll on Woods ranking: He has dropped to 861st in the world. Wholesale Hoodies NFL Shirts Outlet Jerseys NFL Wholesale Cheap NFL Jerseys Free Shipping Wholesale Jerseys Cheap Cheap NFL Jerseys China Wholesale Jerseys Wholesale NFL Jerseys Cheap NFL Jerseys China Cheap NFL Jerseys ' ' '



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