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MessagePosté le: 11/11/2016 08:36:29    Sujet du message: these teams are getting. The easy thing to do is blame a Répondre en citant

BOSTON -- With one ace already on the disabled list, the Boston Red Sox werent taking any chances when their other star pitcher landed awkwardly after a pitch late in the game. By that point, though, Jon Lester had more than done his job. Lester pitched into the eighth inning before jamming his right hip and leaving the game, and Dustin Pedroia homered during a seven-run second to help the Red Sox beat the Toronto Blue Jays 7-4 in the opener of a four-game series Thursday night. "I slipped a little bit. I guess the doctors were kind of calling it a little jammed hip, a type of zinging sensation down my leg." Lester said. "It just didnt feel normal and like I said, at that point in the game, especially with that offence -- they can score some runs in a hurry -- so theres no point in trying to be a hero. Weve got a long way to go the rest of the season." Toronto, which reeled off 11 straight wins this month, had won 12 of its past 14 games and 15 of 19 to close within 6 1/2 games of the AL East-leading Red Sox. Then the Blue Jays ran into Lester. The left-hander retired 10 straight to begin the game and didnt allow a hit until the fifth. But he exited the game with a 7-2 lead after giving up consecutive singles to start the eighth and running the count to 3-0 on Emilio Bonifacio. Farrell came darting out of the dugout as the infielders crowded around Lester. Moments later, Lester walked off the field and Junichi Tazawa came on in relief. "The final pitch that he threw, his landing foot kind of gave way and he jammed his hip," Farrell said. "Given where we were in the ballgame and the number of pitches he had thrown, he clearly had done his job and we werent going to take any chances." It was quite a scare for Red Sox Nation. Clay Buchholz, who is 9-0 with a 1.71 ERA, hasnt pitched since June 8 because of neck stiffness and a sore shoulder. Lester, however, isnt concerned about his leg. He has experienced this before and doesnt think he will miss any starts. "Im not too worried about it. The doctors didnt seem worried about it," he said. "I actually feel fine now. Walking off the field, it just kind of stays with you for a little while, and then after the docs looked at me, I feel normal. Hopefully that will carry over to tomorrow and we wont have to worry about it." The Blue Jays capitalized when Lester left the game, cutting the deficit to 7-4 on a sacrifice fly by Jose Reyes and a groundout by Jose Bautista. Koji Uehara preserved the lead with a perfect ninth for his third save. Lester (8-4) was charged with four runs on five hits with five strikeouts and three walks in winning for just the second time in his last eight starts. "I feel that responsibility to go out there and save the bullpen and thats what we tried to do tonight," Lester said. "Obviously would have liked to give (Tazawa) a little better situation than what he came into, but he kept us with the lead and thats the main thing." After starting the season 6-0 with a 2.72 ERA through his first nine starts, Lester struggled over his past seven, going 1-4 with a 7.30 ERA. He returned to form just in time to face baseballs best team in June -- and Bostons bats provided him all the support he needed. The Red Sox jumped all over Chien-Ming Wang, tagging the right-hander for seven runs while batting around in the second. Wang (1-1) lasted just 1 2-3 innings, allowing all seven runs on six hits with two walks and no strikeouts. "They dropped seven on us," Toronto manager John Gibbons said. "Against a good pitcher, you are never going to catch that. Too much to overcome." Lester needed only 30 pitches to get through three innings and didnt allow a baserunner until Bautista walked with one out in the fourth. Melky Cabrera singled for Torontos first hit with one out in the fifth and moved to second on a base hit by Rajai Davis. Maicer Izturis drove them both home with a double to left-centre. Yet it wasnt enough to make up for Bostons blistering start. Wang allowed the first seven batters to reach base during the drawn-out second. David Ortiz and Mike Carp walked, Daniel Nava delivered an RBI single off the Green Monster in left field and Jarrod Saltalamacchia followed with an RBI single up the middle to make it 2-0. Stephen Drews double to right scored Nava, and consecutive base hits by Jose Iglesias and Jacoby Ellsbury stretched the lead to 5-0 before Wang even managed an out. It got even worse. After inducing a double play, Wang served up Pedroias fifth homer of the season, a two-run shot that landed in the first row of Green Monster seats and ended Wangs evening after just 45 pitches. "We swung the bats well," Pedroia said. "A lot of guys strung together some quality at-bats. It was a huge inning for us." NOTES: The Red Sox played their 81st game, marking the 16th consecutive season Boston has owned a winning record halfway through the season. ... Red Sox RHP Clay Buchholz, on the DL with a neck strain, has been shut down for two to three days with lingering soreness in his right shoulder, according to Farrell. Buchholz (9-0, 1.71 ERA) underwent an MRI on Wednesday that revealed inflammation in the bursa sac area, but no structural damage. Farrell said he hopes Buchholz will resume throwing this weekend. ... Ellsbury has hit safely in eight straight games and 22 of the past 25. ... Wang fell to 6-7 in 16 career appearances against the Red Sox. ... Toronto RHP Josh Johnson (1-2, 4.60 ERA) will face Allen Webster (0-2, 11.25) in the second game of the series Friday. ... Carp returned to the lineup after missing three games and eight of the past nine with right hamstring tightness. Truitje Eden Hazard. Now, Sarah Burkes legacy will live on in Canadas Sports Hall of Fame. Burke, who tragically died at age 29 from a training accident in 2012, headlined the 2014 class named for induction Wednesday. Rode Duivels Shirt Adidas. "Theyve been good against everybody," he said. Carlos Gomez launched a three-run homer and Matt Garza battled into the seventh inning for his first win in four starts to help the Brewers continue their mastery of the Rockies with a 7-4 victory Saturday. -- Ricky Romeros comeback bid hit another road bump Tuesday in an ugly 18-4 Jays loss to a Detroit Tigers split squad. Rode Duivels Dries Mertens Shirt. - The Toronto Blue Jays have optioned pitchers Kyle Drabek, Chad Jenkins and Sean Nolin to triple-A Buffalo. Eden Hazard - Minnesota Vikings fans would surely concede Teddy Bridgewater is not Peyton Manning.TAMPA – This is who the Leafs are. For all the talk of change and the need for it in recent weeks or the hope for change that a revamped coaching staff and roster brought with it in the fall, this club essentially embodies all the same flawed elements as years past. Nothing has changed. And with the midway point of the season just over a week away, its pretty safe to assume that not much will change or change substantially enough to matter. This is a middle of the road hockey club, one that may challenge and even qualify for a playoff position this season. But also one that remains fatally flawed in the bigger picture of Stanley Cup contention with a troubled core thats locked up long-term. This is a defensively-challenged, offensively-potent hockey club that wins behind that offence along with goaltending that is typically above-average despite an enormous workload. Monday night in Tampa offered the perfect snapshot of all that these Leafs are despite assertions from the teams captain that a fifth loss in six games was more the result of playing on back-to-back nights. Tonights a totally different situation, Phaneuf said after a 3-2 loss to Tampa, challenging an assessment that the clubs defensive issues have lingered for weeks and not just a single 60-minute affair. Its not even in the same ballpark. Youre playing a team thats sitting. Its different circumstances. Its a back-to-back game, he noted earlier. Theyre sitting here waiting. I think you could tell which team was fresher. With saying that, thats part of playing in the National Hockey League. Youve got to be able to play back-to-backs. Toronto scored twice on its first two shots in the opening eight minutes – opportunistic as ever – then proceeded to land just two more shots in the 20 minutes or so that followed. The Lightning peppered shot after shot – many of quality – at a feisty James Reimer as the Leafs scrambled around in the defensive zone. Head coach Randy Carlyle observed that his team was scatterbrained at times during a second period that saw Tampa score twice, including a game-tying goal from Valterri Filppula; one that zipped through traffic to beat Reimer. Making his second start in as many nights, the 26-year-old Reimer held on to stop the first 22 shots he faced before yielding a goal on each of the next two that came his way. Toronto, better than only Buffalo this season in shot suppression, allowed 32 shots after two periods alone. They were held to just four on the other end nearly halfway through the game. When we do get opportunities, were able to score, but were not getting enough of them, Carlyle said, his team generating just 23 shots at Ben Bishop. And were not sustaining enough pressure in the offensive zone and the other team, they have the puck more than we do. Tampa finished with a 65 per cent possession mark at even-strength, cycling pucks almost without end in the Toronto zone. Steven Stamkos ultimately broke the tie midway through the final frame, wide-open in front of Reimer to tip what became the game-winning goal. It was the kind of glaring misstep defensively thats become all too representative of this Leafs team. Monday marked the 10th time in 37 games – and sixth in the past 12 – that Toronto has surrendered 40 shots or more. We gave up too many chances, but again it is a back-to-back, Phaneuf said, pushing an odd defence of troubles that have lingered for much longer than a night. But its still unacceptable to expect Reims to have that much [of a] workload…And the bottom line is, we have to cut down shots against. One night aside, the challenge for team president Brendan Shanahan in the weeks, months and years ahead is to determine how much of what ails the club is tied to Carlyle and a system and message that hasnt taken and how much is tied to a roster built on the stilts of a truly flawed core, led by Phaneuf and Phil Kessel. Kessel, perhaps the teams best player, symbolizes the difficulty of such a task, his gifts offensively so great but so lacking in other key areas and intangibles of the game. He has seven years to go on a contract which carries an annual cap hit of $8 million. The Leafs will likely right this losing spell, get back on track and win some games. Theyve got the offence and goaltending to do so. But that wont change the grander picture of what this team is and thats one in need of deconstruction by a boss with plenty on his plate in the weeks, months and years ahead. Five Points 1. Shots Against These defensive troubles have only been exacerbated recently. The Leafs have been outshot by an average of nearly 11 shots in the past 10 games, yielding 38 per game in that span. Shot Differential 10-game Segment Shots-Against Average Shots-For Average Dec. 10 – Dec. 29 37.9 27.1 Nov. 15 – Dec. 9 33.3 29.3 Cody Franson offeered a detailed assessment of some of the teams defensive troubles.dddddddddddd Some of it stems from being able to break out of our zone, he said. Were trying some different things right now; trying to play less in our zone and limit those shots against. But its a combination of things. I think weve just got to get back in a constant flow. Were playing a system that we seem to be spacing ourselves out a little bit sometimes or getting over-extended in the D-zone sometimes. Its just a matter of our group trying to work in five-man units a little better and play tighter hockey. We have to try and do a better job of being more physical and eliminating [the opposing] teams cycle game, he continued, pressed further on the clubs ongoing troubles in the defensive zone. And when we get the puck, we have to be able to get out of our zone and have options to get out of our zone. It seems like we turn it over too much. We dump the puck in without a lot of forechecking pressure or were just too tired to get anything on them. We dump it and we change and theyre coming back at us and we receive the game. 2. Talk without Results The Leafs have talked often about what must change as it relates to the defensive zone, but that talk hasnt been followed by any consistent results. Phaneuf disagreed, however, with such an assessment. You have your own opinion on what you think can be changed, he said. But us as players, we have a job to do. Were working at it, but we have to be better at it. You can have your opinion on it, but were working towards being and doing a better job of keeping our shot totals down, but tonight we just werent able to do that. I dont think its as much as a group of not buying in, Franson added. I dont think thats the problem. I think were just struggling to execute right now and get that flow within our group. Its not like were not working hard, we just arent doing it quite smart enough. 3. Robotics Daniel Winnik observed recently that the structured game, which has eluded the Leafs so often, is not always fun to play, but necessary for team success. He noted Monday how the club tends to stray from that type of game and think hey we can play some run and gun right now. Its tough to stick to a structured system when thats happening. Winnik agreed that part of the challenge lied in convincing the teams skilled players to rein in that skill from time to time in favour of a better team game. Fewer risky plays, say, at the offensive blue line thus resulting in fewer turnovers and less chances for the opponent in transition. When youve got guys who are as skilled as they are, its tough to hold them back, Winnik said. Its like reining in a thoroughbred and telling them to not go as fast as they can. Weve gotten better at it throughout the year and then weve reverted back to old ways sometimes. I dont know what its going to take to stick to robotics a bit, but I think itll slowly happen. I think its just commitment, really. Its tough to do. 4. In Defence of Reimer The Leafs spent Monday morning deconstructing video from Sundays 6-4 defeat in Florida. Made clear to players yet again was the need for stiffer coverage in the defensive zone, a point repeated all too frequently in recent years. Less than vigilant in their defence of James Reimer – both on and off the ice – following the loss to the Panthers, the team took to defending him some a day later. We have all the confidence in the world in James Reimer, said Leafs assistant Steve Spott. We have to be better in front of him. Its not only the shots, its the quality of shots that some of these teams are getting. The easy thing to do is blame a pitcher in baseball or a goalie in hockey; were all about a full team effort and weve got to make sure were better in front of both goalies. 5. Bernier Though he was ultimately held out for the second straight night (flu-like symptoms), Jonathan Bernier was back with the Leafs on Monday and feeling better. The team considered dressing him as the backup, but ultimately decided against it. Bernier did travel with the club to Boston and is expected to be available for Wednesday nights game against the Bruins. Stats Pack 10 – Number of times the Leafs have allowed 40 shots or more this season. 37.9 – Average shots against the Leafs in the past 10 games. 10.8 – Margin by which the Leafs have been outshot in those 10 games. 9-8-1 – Leafs record in sets of back-to-back games this season. Special Teams Capsule PP: 0-2 Season: 20.2% (10th) PK: 3-4 Season: 83.2% (10th) Quote of the Night Its a back-to-back game. Theyre sitting here waiting. I think you could tell which team was fresher. With saying that, thats part of playing in the National Hockey League. Youve got to be able to play back-to-backs. - Dion Phaneuf, on the Leafs loss in Tampa. Up Next The Leafs continue their five-game road swing in Boston on Wednesday night. Wholesale Jerseys ' ' '
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