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CHICAGO (AP) -- Cardinals ace Adam Wainwright struck out 11 and allowed one run through seven innings, and Jon Jay drove in four runs with a homer and double to lead St. Louis to a 6-1 win over the Chicago Cubs on Sunday.

Matt Carpenter singled in two runs in the third to help back Wainwright (14-7), who was in command and allowed just five hits and one walk after going 0-2 in his previous four starts.

Junior Lake drove in the Cubs' only run with a double in the sixth.

Wainwright hadn't won since July 21 at home against San Diego and had allowed 14 runs in 28 innings during the span.

On Sunday, he faced only one batter over the minimum through the first five innings and only 26 through seven innings.

Kevin Siegrist and Trevor Rosenthal combined to pitch scoreless eighth and ninth.

Chicago starter Edwin Jackson (7-13) allowed three runs, but only one earned, through six innings. He walked four and struck out three.

Jackson has been stronger in the second half after an 1-8 start. He got little support on Sunday and his defense didn't help when Lake dropped a fly ball in center field for an error in the Cardinals' three-run second inning.

The Cubs have scored just 12 runs in their past eight games at Wrigley Field and have been shut out in five of those contests.

St. Louis catcher Yadier Molina had two doubles in his third game back after two weeks on the disabled list.

Starlin Castro was back in the Cubs lineup a day after being pulled for making a mistake the day before, and had an infield single. Manager Dale Sveum said Castro had atoned for his mistake.

On Saturday, the shortstop dawdled after catching a popup in shallow left field, allowing a run to score and Sveum pulled Castro from the game.

Sveum was thrown out of Sunday's game in the seventh for arguing with plate umpire Phil Cuzzi after Donnie Murphy was called out on a check swing. Sveum yelled from the dugout, then came onto the field to continue the argument following the ejection.

Carpenter's single with two outs and the bases loaded drove in two runs as the Cardinals jumped ahead 3-0 in the second.

With one out, Molina and Jay bounced back-to-back doubles just inside third base to make it 1-0.

Rookie Kolten Wong's deep fly ticked off Lake's glove for an error, putting Wong on second and Jay on third. Following an intentional walk to Daniel Descalso and fly out by Wainwright, Carpenter's hit up the middle drove in Jay and Wong.

The Cubs cut it to 3-1 in the sixth. David Dejesus, who had walked with two outs, scored on Lake's double to the gap.

Jay's three-run homer in the seventh off James Russell, the second of four Chicago relievers, made it 6-1.

DeJesus was thrown out trying to score from third on Anthony Rizzo's fly ball in the eighth.

NOTES: Wainwright had a season-high 12 strikeouts on April 13 against Milwaukee. . The 23-year-old Castro, one of the Cubs' most touted young players, has struggled much of this season. He entered Sunday hitting .244 with seven homers and 32 RBIs, and was 0 for 16 in his past five games. But Sveum was willing to give him another chance. "I don't think this kid can get better by not playing today and understanding the adversity that we all go through in a game," Sveum said before the same. ... Descalso, a left-handed batter, started at shortstop for St. Louis on Sunday against Jackson, a right-hander. He replaced right-handed hitting, Pete Kozma who played Saturday. Manager Mike Matheny stopped short of saying the two would platoon the rest of the season. "I am still comfortable with (Kozma's defense), but I think we've all been becoming more comfortable with the innings (Descalso) has been playing as well, and how he's swinging the bat at times. I think you're going to see both of them." Kozma, was hitting .223 entering the game and Descalso was at .254. ... Wong, one of the Cardinals' top prospects, started at second on Sunday and appeared in each game of the series after making his major league debut on Friday.CHICAGO (AP) - Cardinals ace Adam Wainwright struck out 11 and allowed one run through seven innings, and Jon Jay drove in four runs with a homer and double to lead St. Louis to a 6-1 win over the Chicago Cubs on Sunday.
 
Matt Carpenter singled in two runs in the third to help back Wainwright (14-7), who was in command and allowed just five hits and one walk after going 0-2 in his previous four starts.
 
Junior Lake drove in the Cubs' only run with a double in the sixth.
 
Wainwright hadn't won since July 21 at home against San Diego and had allowed 14 runs in 28 innings during the span.
 
On Sunday, he faced only one batter over the minimum through the first five innings and only 26 through seven innings.
 
Kevin Siegrist and Trevor Rosenthal combined to pitch scoreless eighth and ninth.
 
Chicago starter Edwin Jackson (7-13) allowed three runs, but only one earned, through six innings. He walked four and struck out three.
 
Jackson has been stronger in the second half after an 1-8 start. He got little support on Sunday and his defense didn't help when Lake dropped a fly ball in center field for an error in the Cardinals' three-run second inning.
 
The Cubs have scored just 12 runs in their past eight games at Wrigley Field and have been shut out in five of those contests.
 
St. Louis catcher Yadier Molina had two doubles in his third game back after two weeks on the disabled list.
 
Starlin Castro was back in the Cubs lineup a day after being pulled for making a mistake the day before, and had an infield single. Manager Dale Sveum said Castro had atoned for his mistake.
 
On Saturday, the shortstop dawdled after catching a popup in shallow left field, allowing a run to score and Sveum pulled Castro from the game.
 
Sveum was thrown out of Sunday's game in the seventh for arguing with plate umpire Phil Cuzzi after Donnie Murphy was called out on a check swing. Sveum yelled from the dugout, then came onto the field to continue the argument following the ejection.
 
Carpenter's single with two outs and the bases loaded drove in two runs as the Cardinals jumped ahead 3-0 in the second.
 
With one out, Molina and Jay bounced back-to-back doubles just inside third base to make it 1-0.
 
Rookie Kolten Wong's deep fly ticked off Lake's glove for an error, putting Wong on second and Jay on third. Following an intentional walk to Daniel Descalso and fly out by Wainwright, Carpenter's hit up the middle drove in Jay and Wong.
 
The Cubs cut it to 3-1 in the sixth. David Dejesus, who had walked with two outs, scored on Lake's double to the gap.
 
Jay's three-run homer in the seventh off James Russell, the second of four Chicago relievers, made it 6-1.
 
DeJesus was thrown out trying to score from third on Anthony Rizzo's fly ball in the eighth.
 
NOTES: Wainwright had a season-high 12 strikeouts on April 13 against Milwaukee. . The 23-year-old Castro, one of the Cubs' most touted young players, has struggled much of this season. He entered Sunday hitting .244 with seven homers and 32 RBIs, and was 0 for 16 in his past five games. But Sveum was willing to give him another chance. "I don't think this kid can get better by not playing today and understanding the adversity that we all go through in a game," Sveum said before the same. ... Descalso, a left-handed batter, started at shortstop for St. Louis on Sunday against Jackson, a right-hander. He replaced right-handed hitting, Pete Kozma who played Saturday. Manager Mike Matheny stopped short of saying the two would platoon the rest of the season. "I am still comfortable with (Kozma's defense), but I think we've all been becoming more comfortable with the innings (Descalso) has been playing as well, and how he's swinging the bat at times. I think you're going to see both of them." Kozma, was hitting .223 entering the game and Descalso was at .254. ... Wong, one of the Cardinals' top prospects, started at second on Sunday and appeared in each game of the series after making his major league debut on Friday.
Sunday, 18 August 2013 19:26
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ST. LOUIS (AP) -- A game without a touchdown pass just feels wrong to Aaron Rodgers. Never mind that it's the preseason.

The Green Bay Packers quarterback threw 39 TD passes last year and his streak of 35 consecutive games with a TD pass from 2008-12 is the second-longest in NFL history.

So, yeah, Rodgers feels a bit unfulfilled and frustrated going two games this August without reaching the end zone.

And yet, all three of his drives were productive in a 19-7 victory over the St. Louis Rams on Saturday night. All four thus far, counting the Packers' 17-0 loss to Arizona in the preseason opener.

"I would say it's preseason first, but we're working on things and we like to finish off those drives," Rodgers said after going 10 for 12 for 134 yards. "The Rams have a very good defense, we saw that last year, it was a tough game and we made some plays late to pull it out.

"But you've got to finish off those drives with TDs."

Rodgers expects to play at least a half in Week 3 at home Friday against the Seahawks. Getting to the end zone, "that's kind of the first priority," he said.

Here are five things we learned from the Packers' victory over the Rams:

1. SKILL TO SPARE: Both of Green Bay's starting wide receivers are injured, with Jordy Nelson expected back for the opener from knee surgery and Randall Cobb, who had a team-leading 80 receptions last season, dogged by a biceps injury.

So Rodgers leaned on tight end Jermichael Finley and got contributions from youngsters Jarrett Boykin and Brandon Bostick, too.

"That's the nature of competition," Rodgers said. "We've got a lot of guys hurt, banged up, and guys are playing for roster spots."

2. THIRD AND L-O-O-N-G: Adding playmakers like Tavon Austin and Jared Cook hasn't translated into instant success for the Rams' offense.

Both got involved for the first time, with Cook's 37-yard catch and run the highlight. But the Rams were 1 for 14 on third-down conversions and 0 for 3 on fourth down.

"I think we killed ourselves with penalties," quarterback Sam Bradford said. "It seemed like third-and-forever a lot of the night."

3. LACY'S PUSH: DuJuan Harris is the Packers' incumbent at running back but hasn't played in the preseason because of a knee injury. Second-round pick Eddie Lacy has capitalized on the opening, gaining 40 yards on eight carries and adding an 11-yard reception in the first half.

"Now we've got a back who has very good patience in Eddie," Rodgers said before hastening to add there are several other good backs in camp. "It's a fun competition and we'll see what happens moving forward, but Eddie had a good night."

4. KICKING IT: Mason Crosby set an NFL record with 762 points in his first six seasons, but converted a career-low 63.6 percent of his field goal attempts last year.

Coach Mike McCarthy said Crosby must beat out Giorgio Tavecchio to keep his job. Crosby was 3 for 3 in Week 2 including a 48-yarder, while Tavecchio was wide left with plenty of distance on a 49-yarder and made a 38-yarder.

"The opportunity did not present itself last week and frankly I think that it was important to get them the opportunity," McCarthy said. "We will continue to let those guys battle it out."

5. JOB ONE: Bradford got over-anxious on fourth-and-goal from the 1 and fumbled away the snap. That misplay marred an otherwise nice day, with Bradford going 8 for 12 for 156 yards and leading the Rams to zero points.

"That's on me. I just missed it," Bradford said. "I've got to make sure I have the ball before I get out of there. It's unacceptable. You can't have that happen."

 
Sunday, 18 August 2013 09:10
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CHICAGO (AP) -- Starlin Castro is continuing to find new ways to make 2013 the worst season in his young career.

Castro was benched shortly after making a mental mistake that allowed the St. Louis Cardinals to score a run and the Cardinals went on to defeat the Chicago Cubs 4-0 Saturday.

Already up 1-0, the Cardinals loaded the bases with one out in the fifth. Matt Carpenter lofted a pop-up to short left field and Castro called off Junior Lake to make the catch. Castro immediately put his head down and hesitated to throw home. Jon Jay took advantage of the mistake, tagging up and scoring from third base.

"I know the outs and everything," Castro said. "I just put my head down, like a mental mistake. I don't want to (make) any excuse for that, it's my mistake and that's why I pay for that, that's why I got taken out of the game. I feel really, really bad that that happened."

After the inning, manager Dale Sveum said something to Castro as he walked down the steps of the dugout. When the Cubs came out to play defense in the sixth, Donnie Murphy switched from third base to shortstop to replace Castro, and Cody Ransom came off the bench to play third.

"Obviously we had a big blunder there," Sveum said. "Lost track of what was going on for whatever reasons and I pulled him out of the game."

Sveum was then asked if Castro gave him an explanation for the mistake.

"No," Sveum responded. "There is no explanation."

After the game, Castro repeatedly apologized to his teammates, coaching staff and to hard-luck loser Travis Wood.

Wood (7-10) retired the first nine St. Louis batters of the game. He gave up four runs and four hits in 5 1-3 innings, including a two-run home run by Yadier Molina. Molina's ninth homer was his first hit in eight at-bats since he came off the disabled list Thursday.

But the biggest play of the day may have been Jay scoring on what the umpires ruled an infield fly.

"It was Jon doing the right thing, tagging, maybe being able to draw a throw," Cardinals manager Mike Matheny said. "I think good teams constantly find ways to put pressure on the defense, and Jon is such a heads-up player, he took two hard steps and saw he had an opportunity."

The Cubs were shutout for the fifth time in seven games at Wrigley Field. The Cubs left the bases loaded in the third. Darwin Barney and Wood singled and Lake drew a one-out walk. But Cardinals starter Joe Kelly worked out of the jam when he got Anthony Rizzo to strike out and ended the inning on a Nate Schierholtz ground out.

Kelly (4-3) tossed six shutout innings and allowed four hits while striking out six and walking three. Kelly hasn't lost since joining the Cardinals' rotation on July 6.

Despite the alarming lack of offense, the story for the Cubs was Castro's continued lack of focus on the field. Sveum said the coaching staff will continue to work with Castro, but the onus is on the young shortstop to make sure the mental lapses don't continue.

"He's played in the big leagues long enough and we've had our discussions," Sveum said. "There comes a point where you have to cross that bridge and get to the next level. He feels as bad as anybody, he knows what happened and he feels awful right now."

Sveum was unsure if Castro would play Sunday, but added that he had no intention of giving up on him. He cited Castro's past offensive success and, despite Saturday's gaffe, what Sveum believes are improvements on the defensive side.

After hitting at least .300 in his first two seasons and leading the league in hits in 2011, Castro regressed a bit in 2012. However, 2013 has seen him reach new lows, hitting only .244 with a sub-.300 on base percentage.

"It's bad. It's an unbelievable year," Castro said. "Especially for me, I've never had a year like that. I feel really bad, especially with the mistake today and my struggling at home plate. But I don't put my head down. I know I can be good and finish strong."

NOTES: Cubs OF Brian Bogusevic, on the 15-day disabled list since July 15 for a strained left hamstring, will report to Triple-A Iowa to continue rehab. ... Cubs RHP Scott Baker, on the 60-day disabled list recovering from Tommy John surgery, will make his second rehab start Sunday with Single-A Dayton. ... Cubs RHP Edwin Jackson (7-12, 5.05 ERA) will face Cardinals RHP Adam Wainwright (13-7, 2.71) Sunday in the series finale. . The Cardinals recalled LHP Tyler Lyons from Triple-A Memphis before the game. He is 2-4 with a 5.35 ERA in seven starts. LHP Sam Freeman was optioned to Memphis after pitching four scoreless innings Friday against the Cubs.

Saturday, 17 August 2013 20:44
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CHICAGO (AP) - Jake Arrieta threw seven shutout innings and Nate Schierholtz drove in three runs to lead the Chicago Cubs to a 7-0 victory over the St. Louis Cardinals on Friday.

Arrieta (1-0) allowed two hits and struck out seven for his first win with the Cubs.

The hard-throwing right-hander was acquired from the Baltimore Orioles in a July 2 trade.

Before Friday, his only other day on the Cubs' roster was as the 26th man for a doubleheader against Milwaukee on July 30.

The Cubs snapped a four-game losing streak with the win and are 7-7 this season against the Cardinals. St. Louis has dropped six of nine overall.

The Cubs had been shut out in four of their past five home games - a streak dating back to Aug. 3.

Cardinals starter Jake Westbrook (7-8) walked the first three batters he faced in the bottom of the first inning.

Schierholtz, the cleanup hitter, hit a two-run single to center to put the Cubs.

After Welington Castillo grounded into a double play, Donnie Murphy followed with a run-scoring single to give the Cubs a 3-0 lead.

Arrieta sailed through the Cardinals lineup. After allowing a single to Carlos Beltran in the second, he got Kolten Wong to ground into a double play in his major league debut.

Those two outs started a streak of 13 straight outs (including five strikeouts) until he walked Westbrook with one in the sixth.

The next batter, Matt Carpenter, also walked to give the Cardinals their first threat of the game, but Jon Jay grounded into a fielder's choice and Matt Holiday struck out looking to end the inning.

The Cubs added a run in the fifth on Schierholtz's sacrifice fly and then scored two more in the sixth on a run-scoring double by Darwin Barney and a safety squeeze bunt by Arrieta.

The final run in the seventh scored on a wild pitch.

NOTES: With the addition of prospect Kolten Wong (who went 0-for-3 in his debut) to the Cardinals' roster and lineup on Friday, former World Series MVP David Freese was relegated to the bench with leadoff hitter Matt Carpenter (who had been playing second) moving to third base. "I would say it's a day-by-day situation," general manager John Mozeliak said. "I'm not saying (Wong) has to play every day - there are gonna be times when we want to get David back in the lineup - so I imagine there's gonna be some split playing opportunities." ... Cubs RHP Matt Guerrier was scheduled to have surgery on his throwing arm on Friday. The surgery, performed by Dr. Timothy Kremchek, is expected to sideline Guerrier six to eight months. ... The Cards' Joe Kelly (3-3) faces Travis Wood (7-9) in the second game of the series on Saturday.

Friday, 16 August 2013 23:25
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The Cardinals are expected to add 2011 first round pick, Kolten Wong, to the roster in time for today's game in Chicago against the Cubs. Wong hit.303 with 10 hime runs and 45 RBIs in 107 games with Triple-A Memphis this season.  The Cardinals optioned outfielder Adron Chambers last night to make room for Wong on the roster.  Speculation is that Matt Carpenter could move to third base while Wong starts at second.  David Freese was replaced in the seventh inning of yesterday's win against Pittsburgh. 

Friday, 16 August 2013 08:04
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ST. LOUIS (AP) — St. Louis wide receiver Austin Pettis is still struggling with the old man tag.

At age 25 and with two years' experience, Pettis is the grizzled veteran of the Rams' receiving corps, which is the youngest in the NFL.

"Never really thought of myself in that way because I'm still young," Pettis said. "It's fun being a leader to some of the younger players. But I'm not that old."

Pettis is the leader, at least in teams of experience and age, to a group that includes rookies Tavon Austin and Stedman Bailey and second-year players Brian Quick and Chris Givens.

St. Louis quarterback Sam Bradford has a quintet of speedy targets and Pettis is the most tenured of the group.

"He's taking a bigger role," Bradford said of Pettis. "Plus, he's got the experience to help everyone else out there."

Pettis, who was drafted in the third round of the 2011 draft, caught 57 passes for 517 yards in his first two seasons, but was never a main target playing behind Danny Amendola and Brandon Gibson.

Now, the former Boise State standout is being asked to take a much large role while the younger receivers learn the ropes.

Austin, the Rams' first-round draft choice and eighth overall selection out of West Virginia, has picked Pettis' brain during the first few weeks of training camp.

Pettis remembers what it was like to learn the complex offense during his first two seasons. And he is happy to share his knowledge.

"I know it was a hard experience for me, so I know what a lot of these guys are going through," Pettis said. "I've helped them with a lot of stuff and as long as they keep on asking me, I'm happy to help out."

Pettis closed out the 2012 campaign on a roll with touchdown catches in his last two games. He caught five passes in back-to-back contests against Buffalo and Minnesota in Weeks 14 and 15. He scored the Rams' lone touchdown in a season-ending 20-13 loss in Seattle.

Pettis left Boise State holding school records in career receptions (229) and touchdowns (39).

He caught 27 passes in a 12-game rookie season that was marred by a suspension for violating the NFL's substance abuse policy. He sat out the final two games of 2011 and the first two contests in 2012.

The 6-foot-3-inch, 203-pounder is known for his skills close to the goal line. All four of his TD catches have come in the red zone.

Pettis enters this season with high expectations. After a pair of solid campaigns, he feels it is time to break out. Rams offensive coordinator Brian Schottenheimer says Pettis had a strong off-season and big things are expected from him this time around.

"I've been waiting for this moment for a while," Pettis said. "It was just a matter of time until all the things clicked and I think that's happening now. We've got a lot of weapons on this team and I think the ball is going to be spread around a lot.

I just want to be part of it."

Pettis is impressed with what he's seen from the younger wide outs. Austin and fellow West Virginia product Bailey, a third-round selection, have looked good. Bailey caught two passes for 27 yards in a 27-19 loss at Cleveland last Thursday.

"Honestly, we're a pretty confident group right now in the locker room and I don't mean that in a bad way," Pettis said. "We've put in a lot of work and a lot of time. We're just excited to go out there and show the rest of the league what we can do.

Even though we're young, we've got a lot of smart guys and a lot of talented guys."

Most of the St. Louis players were given Wednesday off. Fisher held a special-teams only practice in the afternoon. A full-squad workout, open to the public, was held Thursday.

The Rams host Green Bay on Saturday night.

Friday, 16 August 2013 07:58
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ST. LOUIS (AP) -- Just a few days ago, the St. Louis Cardinals had no wins when trailing after eight innings and just one extra-inning victory.

They certainly showed the Pittsburgh Pirates they can go the extra mile.

"We did a good job of bouncing back," said Matt Holliday, who hit a game-ending RBI single in the 12th inning of St. Louis' 6-5 victory over Pittsburgh on Thursday. "Winning this game could be very important for us."

Matt Carpenter had four hits and scored the winning run in the Cardinals' second extra-inning triumph over the NL Central leaders in three days.

"Anytime having a walk-off win, it's a big deal," manager Mike Matheny said. "Jumping on it again it today is just the resiliency of this club.

"You could sense it on the bench. The guys weren't going to give in, weren't going to stop pushing."

The Cardinals took two of three in the series to pull within two games of the sagging Pirates, who have dropped five of six. St. Louis won 4-3 in 14 innings in the opener on Tuesday night.

"We had a number of guys that had opportunities," Pirates manager Clint Hurdle said. "The great thing about what we're going through is the challenge and opportunities we're all getting.

"It's playoff atmosphere baseball."

The Cardinals lost the division lead when they dropped four of five in Pittsburgh from July 29-Aug. 1.

Rookie Kevin Siegrist (1-1), St. Louis' seventh pitcher, struck out two in a perfect 12th against the heart of the order.

Russell Martin and Clint Barmes homered for Pittsburgh, which blew a 4-0 lead in one inning. Jose Tabata had three straight hits after entering as a pinch hitter.

Carpenter sparked the winning rally with a one-out walk. He went to third on Jon Jay's single before Holliday grounded a single up the middle off Bryan Morris (5-6).

Carpenter, the Cardinals' leadoff man, leads the National League with 48 multihit games and 40 doubles. He entered with league-leading averages of .366 at home and .367 in day games.

Holliday also had an RBI double and is batting .452 during a 12-game hitting streak.

Martin hit a tying leadoff drive off Trevor Rosenthal in the eighth, handing the setup man his second blown save of St. Louis' 4-6 homestand.

The Pirates hit for the cycle against Lance Lynn in a four-run fifth that featured rookie Andrew Lambo's first hit and RBI on a double and Barmes' two-run homer. The Cardinals responded by knocking out A.J. Burnett with five runs in the bottom half on a two-run single by Daniel Descalso and RBIs in consecutive at-bats from Carpenter, Jon Jay and Holliday.

"As good as it looked early, it's never easy against this group," Burnett said. "They figured me out early."

Both managers put a heavy stamp on the game. Hurdle hit for two regulars in the sixth and emptied his bench, and Matheny used three relievers in the sixth and seventh.

St. Louis activated All-Star catcher Yadier Molina from the 15-day disabled list, and he announced his presence almost immediately. He threw out Starling Marte trying to steal third to end the first.

NOTES: The Pirates begin a three-game homestand Friday against the Diamondbacks. Pittsburgh rookie Gerrit Cole (5-5, 3.95 ERA), who opposes Brandon McCarthy (2-6, 4.73 ERA) in the opener, has lost five of his last six decisions. ... The Cardinals open a three-game series at Chicago, with St. Louis' Jake Westbrook (7-7, 4.11 ERA) opposing minor league callup Jake Arrieta. It will be Westbrook's first appearance since giving up nine runs in 4 2-3 innings of relief on three days' rest after Shelby Miller was knocked out by a liner off his elbow on his second pitch of the game. ... Cardinals reliever Seth Maness, who grounded into a double play and struck out to strand five runners Tuesday night, got his first career hit in the sixth. ... Pirates reliever Tony Watson worked three scoreless innings and retired the heart of the order in the 10th.

Friday, 16 August 2013 07:52
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COLUMBIA, Mo. (AP) — Missouri coach Gary Pinkel is going with senior James Franklin to start at quarterback for the Tigers.

Pinkel said Franklin, who was dogged by injuries last season, beat out redshirt freshman Maty Mauk for the job. He felt it was important to make an announcement well ahead of the Aug. 31 opener against Murray State.

"James has shown that he's very capable of leading this team at a high level, and we fully expect him to do that," Pinkel said Thursday night in a release. "He's really developed as a leader of this offense, and of this team, and we feel he's ready to be the difference-maker he was before all of the health challenges he dealt with last season."

Pinkel added the coaching staff is considering giving Mauk planned series in games to give him experience. Sophomore Corbin Berkstresser started four games last year when Franklin was sidelined and also had been in the competition.

Three former Missouri quarterbacks are in the NFL. Franklin is among those who got regular work as the backup, seeing limited playing time in 2010 behind Blaine Gabbert, now with the Jacksonville Jaguars. Future Heisman Trophy finalist and New Orleans Saints backup Chase Daniel got his feet wet backing up Brad Smith, a longtime wide receiver in the NFL.

"We have a history with that, and it's something that has worked very well for us," Pinkel said.

Franklin opened fall workouts atop the depth chart and was named one of four captains on the first day of practice. Pinkel emphasized repeatedly at that point that the honor did not guarantee the starting job.

Injuries to Franklin were among the disappointments last year as Missouri went 5-7, ending a string of eight consecutive bowl appearances.

Franklin had 10 touchdown passes and seven interceptions last season, and rushed for 116 yards and two scores. In 2011, he had 21 touchdown passes with 11 interceptions, and rushed for 981 yards and 15 touchdowns.

Friday, 16 August 2013 07:50
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COOPERSTOWN, N.Y. (AP) -- Calling it a historic moment, Commissioner Bud Selig said Thursday that Major League Baseball plans to expand its video review process next season, giving managers a tool they've never had in an effort to dramatically reduce the number of incorrect calls made in games.

Selig made the announcement after two days of meetings with representatives of the 30 teams. The proposal is to be voted on by the owners in November.

"I'm proud of them," Selig said about the replay committee. "It's worked out remarkably well. It's historic. There's no question about it."

A 75 percent vote by the owners is needed for approval, and the players' association and umpires would have to agree to any changes to the current system. But the announcement was met with mostly praise at ballparks across the country.

"This is the time. It's time to make the right decision," Rays manager Joe Maddon said. "It was not available several years ago. So, just live with it, understand it. It makes things better. It makes things more accurate, so what's wrong with that."

MLB executive vice president Joe Torre gave the replay presentation to representatives from all 30 teams Wednesday and it was discussed Thursday morning.

Atlanta Braves President John Schuerholz, a member of the replay committee along with Torre and former manager Tony La Russa, said the umpires were receptive to the change. Schuerholz said 89 percent of incorrect calls made in the past will be reviewable, but he did not provide a list.

Umpires have come under increased scrutiny following several missed calls this season.

"We believe this will be very impactful and very, very meaningful and useful for all sides," Schuerholz said. "Managers will have a new tool that they'll have to learn how to use."

Managers will be allowed one challenge over the first six innings of a game and two from the seventh inning until the completion of the game. Calls that are challenged will be reviewed by a crew in MLB headquarters in New York City, which will make a final ruling.

A manager who sees a call he feels is incorrect can file a challenge with the crew chief or home plate umpire. Only reviewable plays can be challenged. Non-reviewable plays can still be argued by managers, who can request that the umpires discuss it to see if another member of the crew saw the play differently. Reviewable plays cannot be argued by the manager.

Challenges not used in the first six innings will not carry over, and a manager who wins a challenge will retain it.

The home run replay rules currently in use will be grandfathered in to the new system, Schuerholz said.

MLB expects to use the new system in the 2014 playoffs, and the system could be enhanced in the postseason. Training sessions for umpires will start in the Arizona Fall League this winter and continue into spring training.

"We know we have to prepare people for this," Schuerholz said. "Everyone is embracing it. We believe managers will in time."

Schuerholz said after the first year MLB will look at what worked and what didn't and make adjustments for 2015. "It's going to take some time," he said.

One of Selig's major concerns was the possible slowing of games. Schuerholz said with a direct line of communication between the central office and the ballparks the expectation is that replays under the new system will take 1 minute, 15 seconds. Current replays average just over 3 minutes.

"We want to prevent stalling," Schuerholz said. "If it's a reviewable play, he (the manager) has to tell the umpires he's going to review it."

In other matters, Selig said baseball's investigation of Biogenesis, the now-closed Florida anti-aging clinic accused of distributing banned performance-enhancing drugs, has been completed.

Alex Rodriguez was suspended through 2014 and All-Stars Nelson Cruz, Jhonny Peralta and Everth Cabrera were banned 50 games apiece on Aug. 5 when Major League Baseball disciplined 13 players for their relationship to Biogenesis. Rodriguez has appealed his suspension.

Selig also called the Tampa Bay Rays stadium situation "very, very discouraging."

"Baseball needs a resolution to this problem," Selig said with Stuart Sternberg, principal owner of the Rays, in the room listening. "I find it a very, very troubling situation. We were optimistic this was moving in a very positive direction. Unfortunately, it's stalled."

Selig said the situation was serious enough that he was giving "very strong consideration to assigning someone from MLB to intervene in this process, find out exactly what the hell is going on."

"They've been a model organization, extraordinarily capable," Selig said. "They've done everything in their power to make their ballpark situation work. Years have ticked by now with no tangible progress."

The team is obligated to play at outdated Tropicana Field through 2027 and is averaging just over 13,000 fans a game this season. The low attendance figures have led to the Rays receiving millions of dollars in revenue sharing.

"Without that, we wouldn't be able to compete," Sternberg said. "The other owners are looking at it. How many years is this going to be? How much money is it going to be? We should be able to get to the point where the revenue sharing dollars we would receive don't need to be so significant year in and year out."

Relocating is not on the table, Sternberg said.

"Frankly, I haven't been able to get this (new stadium deal) done," Sternberg said. "Something needs to be done and nothing's happening. We've got an enormous following, but something is clearly stopping people from coming through our doors. This isn't a one- or two-year thing. Even the economy has picked up a bit and our attendance has gone down."

Friday, 16 August 2013 07:47
Published in Sports
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COOPERSTOWN, N.Y. (AP) - Major League Baseball is expanding its video review process next season, giving managers a tool they've never had.

Commissioner Bud Selig calls it a historic moment for the game in a press conference in Cooperstown after two days of meetings with representatives of the 30 teams. The proposal is to be voted on by the owners in November.

Managers will be allowed one challenge over the first six innings of games and two after the seventh inning until the end of the game. Calls that are challenged will be reviewed by a crew in MLB headquarters in New York City, which will make the final ruling.

A 75 percent vote by the owners is needed for approval and the players' association and umpires would have to agree to any changes to the current system.

Atlanta Braves President John Schuerholz, a member of the replay committee, says the umpires are receptive to the change. Schuerholz says 89 percent of incorrect calls made in the past will be reviewable.

Thursday, 15 August 2013 15:49
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