Why Yankees sent Jacoby Ellsbury home from workout

Jacoby Ellsbury, who’s out battling a right oblique strain, left hip soreness and plantar fasciitis in his right heel, was sent home from workouts because he was sick Monday, Yankees manager Aaron Boone.

Ellsbury, making $21 million this year, played in just six spring training games and has been on the disabled list all regular season. He’s rehabilitating at the team’s player development complex in Tampa.

Odell Beckham Jr. ranked No. 77 on NFL Network’s top 100 players More Odell Beckham Jr. may be wanting to get paid like the top receiver in football and one of the NFL’s elites, but it seems his peers may not have him in that echelon at the moment. This is a far cry from where the Giants talented receiver ranked last season, when he was No. 8. The 2018 version of the ‘Top 100′ list is the eighth rendition, and it is compiled based on voting by NFL players. Beckham came in at No. 10 in 2016 and No. 32 in 2015.  Since entering the league in 2014, Beckham has been one of the most productive receivers in the NFL, racking up 4.424 yards and 38 touchdowns on 313 catches.

I just thought that if they were going to commit to Eli for another couple of years, and given the talent they have on offense and given the fact that he had almost completely rebuilt the offensive line it was a no-brainer to me, Accorsi said.

They can make a run. With that talent they have on offense, it’s explosive…. I just think it was an ideal pick. He’s a great player.

Accorsi was Giants’ assistant general manager from 1994-97 and general manager from 1998-2007. During that time, the Giants picked two running backs in the first round — Tyrone Wheatley and Ron Dayne — and both failed to live up to expectations.

Seahawks’ Doug Baldwin has NFL’s best hands since 2015 More If Allstate Insurance is looking for a new spokesman, perhaps they should hire Seattle Seahawks’ Doug Baldwin. Baldwin has the safest hands in the NFL, according to research by Pro Football Focus.sharks-044

Herrera hits 2 homers, Nola goes 7, Phils beat Braves 7-3

Odubel Herrera hit two homers, Jorge Alfaro also went deep and Aaron Nola pitched seven innings to help the Philadelphia Phillies beat the Atlanta Braves 7-3 Friday night.

Braves right-hander Julio Teheran left after three innings because of tightness in his right upper trapezius. There was no word on the extent of his injury.

Nola (3-1) settled in nicely after allowing three runs in the first. He didn’t give up another run and surrendered seven hits.

Acuna robbed Herrera of extra bases with a diving, backhanded catch on a sinking liner to left.

Braves: C Tyler Flowers was reinstated from the 10-day disabled list and C Carlos Perez was designated for assignment. The team also recalled Whitley from Triple-A Gwinnett and RHP Matt Wisler was optioned.

Phillies: RHP Ben Lively was placed on the 10-day DL because of a strained lower back. Righty Jake Thompson was recalled from Triple-A Lehigh Valley.

RHP Mike Foltynewicz (1-1, 2.77 ERA) starts for the Braves on Saturday while RHP Nick Pivetta (1-0, 2.57 ERA) goes for Philadelphia. Foltynewicz is 3-2, 4.02 in nine appearances against the Phillies. Pivetta is 3-0, 2.77 in five starts vs. Atlanta.

St. Louis Cardinals center fielder Tommy Pham was back in the starting lineup and went 4-for-6 on Thursday afternoon. He was forced from Wednesday’s game when he suffered a cut to his forehead while preparing in the batting cage for his second at-bat.

“He’s resting as comfortably as he can be,” said Showalter, whose last-place Orioles have lost 18 of their first 24 games. “We’re just going to take it day by day, but I’m not planning on him being a big league player for six weeks.”

Beckham is the third key position player to hit the disabled list for the O’s. He joins All-Star second baseman Jonathan Schoop, who’s been out since April 14 with an oblique strain, and designated hitter Mark Trumbo, whose quad strain has kept him out all season. Closer Zach Britton (Achilles) and outfielder Colby Rasmus (hip flexor) are also on the DL.

Prior to hitting the shelf, Beckham had been the Orioles’ starting third baseman, hitting .179 with one home run and four RBIs in 23 games this season. A former top overall pick by the Tampa Bay Rays in 2008, the 28-year-old Beckham came to Baltimore last July 31 in a trade with Tampa. Playing exclusively shortstop, he posted a .306 average with 10 homers in 50 games following the trade. This year, with Manny Machado moving from third base back to his natural position of shortstop, Beckham made the switch to third.dolphins_035

John Lynch: Reuben Foster will be cut if proven he hit woman

General manager John Lynch said Monday the San Francisco 49ers will be patient through linebacker Reuben Foster’s legal issues in a domestic violence case but stressed he won’t remain on the team if it determines he hit a woman.

“I’m not at liberty to go in depth on this because it’s an ongoing legal process, and we’re going to respect that. I do have a couple of thoughts. Speaking for Jed (York) and Kyle (Shanahan) and speaking for the York family, as you all know and as our release indicated, we take the gravity of these charges extremely seriously. We do feel like patience is the right approach right now. We’re going to learn things through this legal process.

In addition to the aforementioned felony charges in California, Foster is also facing second-degree marijuana possession charges in Tuscaloosa, Alabama, after an arrest there on Jan. 12. His next hearing for that is scheduled for May 2.

Either case could lead to discipline from the NFL, up to and including suspension. Foster’s cases will be reviewed under the league’s policies on substance abuse and personal conduct.

The 49ers drafted Foster 31st overall last year after questions about his health and character caused him to drop from being a possible top 10 pick.

Last year, 182 players, including 137 from American colleges, were on the early-entry list, up from 162 total and 117 from colleges in 2016.

Sixty-four college underclassmen kept their names in the NBA draft a year ago, which was up from 60 in 2016. This year, more than 55 college underclassmen have already either signed with an agent or announced they will sign with an agent, forgoing their remaining college eligibility. That list includes likely lottery picks Deandre Ayton (Arizona), Marvin Bagley III (Duke), Jaren Jackson Jr., (Michigan State), Michael Porter Jr. (Missouri) and Mohamed Bamba (Texas). Luka Doncic, expected to be selected in the top five in the June 21 NBA draft, was one of the 55 international players to declare.

However, the majority of the college underclassmen who have declared have not yet signed with an agent. The NBA rule allows players to retain their eligibility as long as they withdraw before May 30, 10 days after the conclusion of the May 16-20 NBA draft combine in Chicago.

A few key players, and potential first-rounders, decided not to test the NBA’s draft process, including Arkansas big man Daniel Gafford, Gonzaga sophomore forward Rui Hachimura and Virginia redshirt freshman De’Andre Hunter.dolphins_116

Ole Miss objects to waiver request of ex-QB Shea Patterson

Ole Miss has formally objected to former quarterback Shea Patterson’s request to play college football in 2018, according to Patterson’s attorney.

The former Rebel quarterback transferred to Michigan in December. He petitioned the NCAA to waive its usual one-year transfer waiting period this spring on the grounds that his old coaches at Ole Miss lied to him and other players about the degree of trouble the program was in for violating NCAA rules.

“Following reports concerning the interviews of Derrius Guice at the Scouting Combine, the League conducted a thorough investigation, which included a formal review and report from every club that interviewed Mr. Guice during the Combine, as well as discussions with Mr. Guice, his agent and others,” NFL spokesman Brian McCarthy said in a statement. “The investigation did not confirm that any club made the reported inquiries. Nonetheless, we used this opportunity to reaffirm our workplace standards and emphasize the importance of fully complying with all requirements of federal and state law. The NFL and each of its member clubs remain fully committed to fair and non-discriminatory employment practices.”

At the time of the accusation, the league released a statement deploring such questions.

“Everyone who works in the NFL, including cheerleaders, has the right to work in a positive and respectful environment that is free from any and all forms of harassment and discrimination and fully complies with state and federal laws,” the statement read.

“If the NFL is serious about this statement,” Blackwell said in Tuesday’s letter, “then this should be an acceptable settlement demand.”

Tillman (1-4) struck out five and walked two on 98 pitches to get Baltimore its second win in 13 games. Tillman had gone 22 straight starts without a victory since May 7, 2017 — his first outing of last season. He also pitched past the sixth inning for the first time since Aug. 11, 2016.

Manny Machado hit his team-leading ninth home run and added an RBI single in the eighth. Richard Bleier pitched a perfect eighth, and Mychal Givens closed out the ninth.

Tillman provided a needed performance for the Orioles (7-19), who are enduring the second-worst 26-game stretch to begin a season in franchise history. The team started the 1988 season 0-21 before winning two of its next five games.sl_cardinals_046

Penguins erase 2-goal deficit, beat Capitals 3-2 in Game 1

After the Capitals scored early, the Penguins scored often to stun their rivals with yet another comeback.

Patric Hornqvist, Sidney Crosby and Jake Guentzel scored in a 4:49 span to help Pittsburgh erase a two-goal deficit in the third period and the Penguins beat Washington 3-2 on Thursday night in Game 1 of the second-round series.

“I thought he was locked in all night long,” coach Mike Sullivan said. “He made some big saves for us, especially when they were pressing down the stretch there. … When you get those types of saves, it’s easy to play with some confidence in front of him.”

Murray couldn’t predict a furious comeback, but he wasn’t shocked, either. Not after Pittsburgh has won nine consecutive playoff series dating to 2016, including two against these Capitals.

Eric Karabell: I am paying close attention to Cincinnati Reds infielder Nick Senzel, for it is important which position he plays and how he does at the plate. It’s a bit like Acuna’s call-up foolishly being delayed by the Braves because he wasn’t hitting like a star in the minors. He never wanted to be there in the first place. Neither does Senzel. He can hit in the majors right now and should be hitting second in the Reds’ regular lineup and is capable of playing second base and third base. The Reds have nothing special at shortstop, but I can understand why he is not being pushed to play there. On the pitching side I’ll also watch Chicago White Sox right-hander Michael Kopech. The strikeout ability is so special I think he is worth stashing now, even if the White Sox are bad and wait a few months to call him up.

Tristan H. Cockcroft: For me it’s Senzel, whom I think would already be in the majors if he had begun the Triple-A season with better hitting stats — he’s hitting .246/.333/.361 through 15 games for Louisville. In fact, I preferred Senzel to Torres for the 2018 full season at the onset of the regular season, once both had been assigned to the minors, as the Reds showed a willingness to be creative with Senzel’s position, which is sure to accelerate his ascent to the majors. Through those 15 games, Senzel has made nine starts at second base and six at third base, and he also logged some time at shortstop during spring training.jets_013

Mitchell scores 33, Jazz rout Thunder 113-96

Shutting down the Utah Jazz offense is proving easier said than done for the Oklahoma City Thunder.

For a second straight game, a late second-quarter surge by Utah carried over into the second half and it allowed the Jazz to pull away for a 113-96 victory Monday night. The Jazz used a 20-3 run spanning the end of the second quarter and the start of the third to break open the game.

The Thunder opened a 26-19 lead late in the first quarter when Carmelo Anthony capped a string of three straight Oklahoma City baskets with an alley-oop layup. They held onto the lead for much of the second quarter until Utah finally woke up on offense.

Starting with Gobert cutting to the rim for a dunk with 3:45 left in the second quarter, the Jazz scored on 11 straight possessions. Ingles fueled the surge by hitting three consecutive 3s to put Utah in front 58-52 before halftime.

“These guys are great at telling me to shoot it as much as possible within the flow of our team and our offense,” Ingles said.

Desperate to break out of a slump, Marcell Ozuna resorted to changing lumber.

The move worked wonders for the St. Louis Cardinals’ outfielder.

Using a bat borrowed from teammate Jose Martinez, Ozuna hit a tiebreaking two-run single, and Michael Wacha won his fourth straight start as the Cardinals beat the New York Mets 9-1 on Wednesday night.

“This is something for him to build off of,” Matheny said. “It was big. This should trend towards good things in the future. Marcell is getting there.”

Wacha (4-1) gave up one run on five hits over six innings. He struck out eight and walked one. He is 4-0 with 2.78 ERA over his last four starts. His only loss this season came in a 6-2 setback to the Mets on March 31.

“I was able to put the fastball where I wanted to,” Wacha said. “Got some sweet misses.”

Wacha was just as proud of his safety squeeze bunt that brought in Paul DeJong and pushed the lead to 4-1 in the fourth. Wacha also scored two runs in the game, “for the first time since high school,” he joked.jets_049

Meek Mill released from prison, attends Sixers’ series-sealing Game 5 victory

Minutes after the first playoff series win of his career, 76ers center Joel Embiid sought out Philadelphia rapper Meek Mill and embraced him.

“I was just excited that he got to witness this because he’s always represented the city, and he loved this city so much,” Embiid said late Tuesday night.

Mill attended the Sixers’ series-clinching 104-91 win over the Miami Heat hours after his release from prison earlier Tuesday.

The commute with Rubin involved a helicopter, something the co-owner said Mill often talked about.

“You know, Meek told me every day we talked, ‘I just dream about the heli picking me up,'” Rubin said. “He said, ‘That’s what I want.’ So when they released him, we said the helicopter’s gonna pick you up.”

“But at the same time, I could have had a year of NBA development and had a year head start,” Bamba said. “So, obviously, I would love to have that opportunity if it was there for me.”

An independent commission earlier Wednesday recommended the NCAA begin working toward pushing for reforms that would end the NBA’s so-called one-and-done rule. The commission said it wanted 18-year-olds to again be eligible for the NBA draft, allowing a path to the pros directly out of high school. The earliest possible date for change based on conversations the NBA has had with its players’ union is the 2020 draft, league sources told ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski.

Bamba, a 7-foot center with a 7-foot-9 wingspan, was one of the top freshmen in college basketball this season. He averaged 12.9 points and 10.5 rebounds while ranking second nationally in blocks at 3.7 per game. Bamba totaled 15 double-doubles, including eight during an 11-game stretch in January and February.

“I don’t want to take away from anything from my time at Texas,” he told ESPN host Rachel Nichols and analysts Byron Scott and Tracy McGrady. “I think it was actually pretty darn special. The relationships that I’ve built there, and the people that I’ve come across, I met some of my best friends in life at the University of Texas.”

Bamba has been considered a top-five pick since the preseason, and he slots in at No. 5 in Jonathan Givony’s latest ESPN mock draft. He missed three games late in the season with a toe injury, but he returned to put up 13 points, 14 rebounds and three blocks during a first-round NCAA tournament loss to Nevada.jets_108