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quez and forwards Patrick Patterson, John Salmo
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MessaggioInviato: 15 Nov 2019 04:15:50    Oggetto:  quez and forwards Patrick Patterson, John Salmo
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OAKLAND, Calif. -- Billy Beane considers Jon Lester a proven ace who can carry a pitching staff through the playoffs, just like he did last fall. The general manager acquired Lester to make sure Oakland gets there first. The baseball-leading, small-budget As won the mighty Lester sweepstakes Thursday, acquiring the left-hander and outfielder Jonny Gomes from the Boston Red Sox for slugging outfielder Yoenis Cespedes. "Once again players like this really dont come along too often," Beane said. "When you get a guy whos a legitimate No. 1 starter in the middle of the season and we currently sit in first place, were excited. ... Theres no looking ahead. The way the playoff system is now, you want to win the division." Oakland, with the best record in baseball at 66-41, also received cash from Boston in another blockbuster deal by Beane. The Red Sox also receive a draft pick. "I believe that the deliberations leading to the two trades we did today were deeply analyzed, thoughtful and value-added," As owner Lew Wolff said in an email. "The best trades are when all parties have potential benefits, and what Billy accomplished is an example of such a win-win. The calls I have received from other owners were very complimentary." Lester is 10-7 with a career-best 2.52 ERA in 21 starts in another outstanding season. He has allowed seven earned runs in his last eight games with 54 strikeouts and nine walks. But the Red Sox put him on the trading block because he can become a free agent after the season -- and Beane isnt ready to commit to re-signing the lefty. Lester, 30, was sought by many teams, including Pittsburgh and the Los Angeles Dodgers. The three-time All-Star originally was scheduled to start Wednesday night for the slumping Red Sox, who instead scratched Lester ahead of Thursdays non-waiver trade deadline. After winning their third World Series in 10 seasons last year, with Lester getting two of the four wins with a 0.59 ERA against St. Louis, the Red Sox are last in the AL East with a 48-60 record. They had Thursday off after losing for the eighth time in nine games to drop 13 games behind first-place Baltimore. While the Red Sox look to next season, the As are determined to take the next step after losing in each of the past two Octobers in five-game division series to Detroit. Oakland was off Thursday before returning home to begin a weekend series with Kansas City on Friday night. Lester is scheduled to start Saturdays game against the Royals. "Well I am awake," Friday starter Sonny Gray posted on Twitter when the trade news broke early Thursday. Oakland later sent lefty Tommy Milone to the Twins for outfielder Sam Fuld, who will help fill a void in centre field with Coco Crisp and Craig Gentry sidelined. Beane believes in starting pitching depth, and the As sure have it. Lester joins Gray (12-3), Scott Kazmir (12-3) and recently acquired Jeff Samardzija and Jason Hammel, obtained in a July 4 trade with the Chicago Cubs. Gomes, a fan favourite who grew up in nearby Petaluma, provides a veteran presence who was invaluable during the As run to the AL West title in 2012. He also was a respected clubhouse leader in Boston, which signed him as a free agent before last season. He is hitting .234 with six homers and 32 RBIs in 78 games. For Boston, this marks another big move of a starting pitcher to the Bay Area after Jake Peavy was traded to San Francisco on Saturday for two pitching prospects. The Red Sox traded John Lackey to St. Louis later Thursday. The 28-year-old Cespedes won the past two Home Run Derby titles at the All-Star game. The Cuban left fielder is in the third season of a $36 million, four-year contract he signed before spring training 2012. Cespedes is batting .256 with 17 homers and 67 RBIs. "Hes a tremendous talent, weve had a tremendous amount of success since hes been here," Beane said. "It is difficult. But if youre going to separate yourself from everybody else and try to get a player like Lester, you have to do something thats unique." Speculation had centred on the Red Sox seeking prospects to add to their already deep farm system. That would have given them more young players to use in another deal for an established player, possibly a power-hitting outfielder. They got that in Cespedes, whose 17 homers is the exact number hit this season by the nine Red Sox players who spent time in the outfield. And Gomes six were the most. Lester has said leaving the Red Sox doesnt rule out a return to the team next season. He had said he would take a hometown discount to stay in Boston, but the teams four-year, $70 million offer in spring training fell far short of what he could get on the open market. Lester leaves his only pro baseball organization. The Red Sox drafted him in the second round in 2002. He made his major league debut June 10, 2006, and got a no-decision in a 7-4 loss to Texas. In his nine major league seasons, Lester is 110-63 with a 3.64 ERA. Hes also a proven post-season star with a 3-0 record in his two World Series. He pitched 5 2-3 shutout innings against the Colorado Rockies in the clinching fourth game in 2007. "In Lesters case, were also dealing with a guy whos one of the best at his position in the game," Beane said, "and has been for a long time. It was just too good an opportunity to pass up."
. After all, the No. 8 seed is chasing far loftier goals. Raonic, from Thornhill, Ont., defeated American Jack Sock 6-3, 6-4, 6-4 in Wimbledons second round on Thursday.
. -- Having already fallen behind because of the NFL lockout, Blaine Gabbert couldnt afford a lengthy holdout.
. Bowditch, the 30-year-old Australian seeking his first PGA Tour title, shot a 4-under 68 to reach 12 under at TPC San Antonio. Matt Kuchar and Andrew Loupe were tied for second. Kuchar shot 65, and Loupe had a 70.
. So what happens? Stevenson lands a huge left to Dawsons temple only 76 seconds into the opening round and walks away with the championship belt. "I said Id knock him out," said Stevenson (21-1).
. But history aside, theyre still happy to participate in the Par 3 contest, traditionally held on the day prior to the first round of the Masters. CHICAGO -- Kyle Lowry believes the Toronto Raptors are built to withstand stretches like this. Thats because theyre a little deeper. Lowry scored 16 points, Jonas Valanciunas added 15 points and 11 rebounds, and Toronto beat the Chicago Bulls 99-77 Saturday night. DeMar DeRozan scored 15 and Amir Johnson added 14 points and eight rebounds to help the Raptors earn their second win in as many nights after dropping six of seven. "Weve got the bodies," Lowry said. "Were a deeper team." Theyre a different team, too, with Rudy Gay now in Sacramento after a seven-player trade this week. They got rid of someone who was averaging 18 points but shooting a career-low 38.8 per cent. Theyve won three of four without him, and they made it look rather easy against Chicago. "Nothing to do with Rudy personally, just the fit," coach Dwane Casey said. "Rudy is a talented player, the fit is a different thing." The Raptors led by 16 early in the third, and pulled away in the fourth after the gap dwindled to four, sending the Bulls to their 10th loss in 13 games. Luol Deng led Chicago with 17 points and Mike Dunleavy Jr. scored 14. Joakim Noah added 10 points and 12 rebounds, while Jimmy Butler scored 11. But it was another difficult night for the Bulls. They shot just 36 per cent and were 6 of 18 on 3-pointers. They were also missing Kirk Hinrich, who sat out with back stiffness. "Losing (stinks), theres no question about it," Noah said. "But it also shows true colours, whos willing to keep fighting through the adversity or whos just going to say, You know what, I want no part of this. Im just going to take bad shots and just not care at all about making winning plays, playing defence, things like that." The Raptors led 51-41 at the half after Lowry nailed a 20-foot jumper and open 3-pointer in the closing seconds, and they scored the first six of the third quarter, with the Bulls turning it over twice and missing four shots Johnsons jumper made it 57-41 three minutes into the quarter, but Bulls started too chip away.dddddddddddd Marquis Teague banked in a 3 in the closing minute of the third to make it 73-66, and D.J. Augustin hit one early in the fourth to make it a four-point game. But a jumper by DeRozan, a layup by Tyler Hansbrough and two free throws by Greivis Vasquez quickly got it back up to 79-69. It hasnt been an easy stretch for either team. The Bulls saw their championship visions get crushed when they lost Derrick Rose to another knee injury. Just about every other key player has been banged up, too. "I think a lot of it is us having guys in and out," Deng said, referring to the Bulls struggles on offence. "Were not getting as much practice time with guys." But Noah didnt want to go down that route. "No excuses," he said. "I know that were capable of a lot better than that. We cant get frustrated. Our effort has to be a lot better to play winning basketball. But its going to come." The Raptors seem to be coming together after experiencing some upheaval the past week. They acquired point guard Vasquez and forwards Patrick Patterson, John Salmons and Chuck Hayes along with financial flexibility after the season in the deal that sent Gay to Sacramento. They also waived Augustin, who was signed by Chicago. "Its gone well," Patterson said. "We want to come in with the right mentality and attitude. What we bring individually we want to incorporate in the system. I think weve done that. Moving the ball, sharing the ball, making the extra pass, averaging high assists every night, that causes everybody to have fun. No one is being selfish. "Thatll make everybody want to play tougher than before." NOTES: Casey said Augustin could fill a need for Chicago, something he was unable to do in Toronto. "We had a gluttony," he said. "Kyle Lowry was getting a lot of minutes." Signed as a free agent in July, he appeared in 10 games this year with the Raptors and averaged 2.1 points and 1.0 assists for Toronto. ... Hinrich missed his first game this season. ' ' '
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MessaggioInviato: 15 Nov 2019 04:15:50    Oggetto: Adv






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