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Category: Boston Red Sox

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Houston Astros move through to ALCS with 5-4 win over Boston Red Sox

  • Red Sox’ season ends with 5-4 defeat to Astros at Fenway Park
  • Houston will open ALCS on Friday against Yankees or Indians

Justin Verlander outpitched Chris Sale in a relief role reversal of aces, and the Houston Astros advanced to their first AL Championship Series, rallying past the Boston Red Sox 5-4 Monday in Game 4 of their playoff matchup.

Houston will open the ALCS on Friday, either at Cleveland or at home against the New York Yankees. The Indians held a 2-1 edge over the Yankees going into Game 4 of the AL Division Series on Monday night.

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Kevin Durant spurns Trump as teams vow to fund Confederate statue removal

  • NBA finals MVP says ‘I don’t respect who’s in office right now’
  • Tampa pro sports teams pledge money to remove statue
  • Red Sox say they support efforts to rename Yawkey Way

Kevin Durant is the latest sports star to disassociate himself from Donald Trump.

The NBA finals MVP said he will not join his team-mates should the Golden State Warriors visit the White House to celebrate their championship win earlier this year. “Nah, I won’t do that,” Durant told ESPN. “I don’t respect who’s in office right now.”

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MLB needs to act on beanballs – but we should know better

Last week’s beanball war between the Boston Red Sox and Baltimore Orioles cast a harsh light on Major League Baseball’s toxic approach to violence

The absurdity of Major League Baseball’s beanball culture reached a peak during last week’s Red Sox-Orioles series. Boston entered the series with its hurlers still angry at Orioles third baseman Manny Machado, who inadvertently clipped Sox second baseman Dustin Pedroia with a slide in their previous series. Matt Barnes and Chris Sale threw at Machado over the clubs’ next few meetings, only for Machado to punish those attempts with an RBI double and a home run respectively.

But Machado was mad following Sale’s brushback attempt in the second game of their most recent series this past Tuesday. After the game, he vented to reporters. “Pitchers out there with fucking balls in their hands, throwing 100mph trying to hit people,” Machado said. “And I’ve fucking got a bat too. I could go out there and crush somebody if I wanted to. But you know what, I’d get suspended for a year and the pitcher only gets suspended for two games. That’s not cool.”

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MLB needs to act on beanballs – but we should know better

Last week’s beanball war between the Boston Red Sox and Baltimore Orioles cast a harsh light on Major League Baseball’s toxic approach to violence

The absurdity of Major League Baseball’s beanball culture reached a peak during last week’s Red Sox-Orioles series. Boston entered the series with its hurlers still angry at Orioles third baseman Manny Machado, who inadvertently clipped Sox second baseman Dustin Pedroia with a slide in their previous series. Matt Barnes and Chris Sale threw at Machado over the clubs’ next few meetings, only for Machado to punish those attempts with an RBI double and a home run respectively.

But Machado was mad following Sale’s brushback attempt in the second game of their most recent series this past Tuesday. After the game, he vented to reporters. “Pitchers out there with fucking balls in their hands, throwing 100mph trying to hit people,” Machado said. “And I’ve fucking got a bat too. I could go out there and crush somebody if I wanted to. But you know what, I’d get suspended for a year and the pitcher only gets suspended for two games. That’s not cool.”

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Skepticism over racism shows some Red Sox fans don’t know Boston’s history

Adam Jones had to endure racist slurs at Fenway Park earlier this week, and it raised uncomfortable questions for not only Boston but baseball itself

On Tuesday night at Fenway Park, Adam Jones received a standing ovation from the Red Sox fans during his first at-bat. It wasn’t an entirely spontaneous act, but rather an orchestrated “mea culpa” from the Red Sox organization to the Orioles outfielder, who was the target of racial slurs from a section of fans the previous night. It was a nice gesture, coupled by apologies from both the organization and the city itself, but the truth is that Monday’s incident has raised pressing issues that won’t be settled by a symbolic act.

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Orioles’ Adam Jones says he was racially abused by Red Sox fans at Fenway Park

  • Center fielder says he was called N-word and had peanuts thrown at him
  • Boston and Baltimore have prickly history in recent times

Orioles center fielder Adam Jones said he was taunted with racial slurs at Fenway Park during Baltimore’s game against the Boston Red Sox on Monday night.

Jones, who is black, said someone in the crowd threw a bag of peanuts at him. He said he had been the subject of racist heckling in Boston’s ballpark before, but this was one of the worst cases of fan abuse he had heard in his 12-year career, according to USA Today Sports. The five-time All-Star said he was “called the N-word a handful of times”.

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Baseball in 2016: from Cubs win! to Scully’s sayonara, 10 memorable moments

Another year of baseball is gone, goodbye: David Lengel takes a look back at the best, worst and most controversial moments of the 2016 season

It was Game 7 of the World Series, and baseball history was busy pulling the Chicago Cubs back into a boiling cauldron of curses. Rajai Davis’ eighth inning, game-tying home run off the Cubs’ Aroldis Chapman had turned Cleveland’s Progressive Field into a mosh pit, with slightly fewer title-starved Indians fans ripping off their shirts in frenetic celebrations.

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Cubs fans, take note: when my Red Sox finally won, I no longer knew who I was | Dave Bry

I’m a Boston fan, and loserdom defined me – until it suddenly didn’t. Cubs fans might find that after winning the World Series, baseball is never the same again

What an absolutely wonderful World Series we just watched. Close games, dominant pitching, spectacular plays; both teams boasting bright young stars (Bryant and Rizzo! Lindor and Ramirez!) buttressed by tested vets (Lester and Ross, Napoli and Crisp); the two best, most lovable managers in baseball (Maddon, Francona). And all the weight of all that history, all that futility – both franchises, defined by failure. One hundred and eight Sisyphean years had passed since the Cubs won the world championship. An almost-as-excruciating 68 for the Indians. Hollywood movies have been made about the haplessness of these teams. It could not have been scripted any better. This was a series any fan with a heart simply did not want to end.

Related: How the Chicago Cubs faced down history and killed a century-old curse

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Curt Schilling was a hero in New England. But his time has passed | Hunter Felt

The Red Sox pitcher sacrificed his body to deliver a World Series. But he’s squandered the fans’ goodwill, and his chances of beating Elizabeth Warren for a Senate seat are slim

In Monday night’s game 3 of the AL Championship Series, Cleveland Indians pitcher Trevor Bauer had to make an early exit after his injured pinkie refused to stop gushing blood. In Massachusetts, the gory sight conjured up surprisingly positive memories: it was hard not to think back to Curt Schilling’s starts in game 6 of the 2004 ALCS and game 2 of the World Series. Pitching on a surgically repaired ankle with blood dripping through thick socks, the Red Sox ace stayed in the game, mowing down the offenses of the New York Yankees and then the St Louis Cardinals on the way towards the team’s first championship in 86 years.

Related: The Red Sox say goodbye to Big Papi, and Boston will never be the same

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The Red Sox say goodbye to Big Papi and Boston will never be the same

The most important Red Sox player since Ted Williams has played his final major league game after Monday’s ALDS loss to Cleveland and Boston is poorer for it

It was the lack of anger that made this particular loss feel different.

Normally when a Boston team flames out during the postseason, social media and sports talk radio act as venues for cathartic venting and irrational ranting. And there was some of that after the Cleveland Indians defeated the Boston Red Sox in Game 3 of the ALDS to complete a clean sweep in the American League Division Series. There were calls for manager John Farrell to be fired, and insults hurled at starting pitcher David Price for not living up to his hefty contract. Mostly though, there was more sadness and regret than anger, a growing sense that “he” deserved a better end than that.

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The Red Sox say goodbye to Big Papi and Boston will never be the same

The most important Red Sox player since Ted Williams has played his final major league game after Monday’s ALDS loss to Cleveland and Boston is poorer for it

It was the lack of anger that made this particular loss feel different.

Normally when a Boston team flames out during the postseason, social media and sports talk radio act as venues for cathartic venting and irrational ranting. And there was some of that after the Cleveland Indians defeated the Boston Red Sox in Game 3 of the ALDS to complete a clean sweep in the American League Division Series. There were calls for manager John Farrell to be fired, and insults hurled at starting pitcher David Price for not living up to his hefty contract. Mostly though, there was more sadness and regret than anger, a growing sense that “he” deserved a better end than that.

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Blue Jays savor 3-0 sweep of Rangers and another trip to the ALCS

  • Toronto beat Texas Rangers 7-6 on Sunday night to sweep AL Division Series
  • Wild-card Blue Jays will face winner of the Cleveland-Boston series

Josh Donaldson’s mad dash moved the Blue Jays into the next round of the playoffs.

Related: José Lobatón: forgotten catcher saves the Nationals and keeps a series alive

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Blue Jays savor 3-0 sweep of Rangers and another trip to the ALCS

  • Toronto beat Texas Rangers 7-6 on Sunday night to sweep AL Division Series
  • Wild-card Blue Jays will face winner of the Cleveland-Boston series

Josh Donaldson’s mad dash moved the Blue Jays into the next round of the playoffs.

Related: José Lobatón: forgotten catcher saves the Nationals and keeps a series alive

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Sport picture of the day: Boston Red Sox zero in

A scorekeeper inside the Green Monster watches Andrew Benintendi of the Boston Red Sox catch a fly ball hit by Josh Donaldson of the Toronto Blue Jays during the fifth inning at Fenway Park, Boston. The Blue Jays won the game 2-1 Continue reading…

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Why protesting against the anthem is the ultimate sin in Major League Baseball

In a sport where patriotisim makes up the fabric of the game, Adam Jones is right to be concerned. Plus, three cheers for Yasiel Puig, Big Papi prepares to bow out, and Joe Maddon rides the Cowboy

Adam Jones works in a city that continues to experience racial upheaval, so perhaps it’s no coincidence that baseball’s most outspoken player on African American social issues calls Baltimore home.

Baseball is the sport that helped break barriers for black people across the United States, starting with Jackie Robinson’s debut in 1947. Nearly 70 years later, the participation of African Americans in the game, on the field as players, in the dugout as managers and in front offices as executives – where progress was always slower – is giving away the gains. Jones, who has spoken out before on racial issues, has little company: a lonely voice in a depleted sea of African American players.

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Why the New York Yankees can’t lose even when they try to

The Yankees raised the white flag, brought in the kids and still kept the buzz around the ballpark. Plus, what the Cubs and Donald Trump have in common

A-Rod who? The omnipresent slugger’s nickname, so long on the tip of our tongues, seemed long gone by the time two ballyhooed Yankees prospects bounced into the Bronx on Saturday. And so what was supposed to be a weekend awash with nostalgia – Alex Rodriguez’ departure, the honoring of the 1996 World Series champion Yanks and a Monument Park plaque for Mariano Rivera, became much more about tomorrow than yesterday.

The Yankees, for all their winning (some 27 World Series titles), have suffered in the past. Their most famous collapse came in 1965, when an empire that brought 10 titles, 15 pennants in 18 seasons, Mickey Mantle, Whitey Ford, Yogi Berra and a host of Yankee elites, crumbled to the core.

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Why Major League Baseball must crush the St Louis Cardinals for their sins

A Cardinals employee was sent to prison following a conviction for hacking the Houston Astros’ database: now his employers must pay

Last June, devout St Louis Cardinals fan Nicole Vartanian was digesting stunning charges: that a member of the team’s own front office had hacked the Houston Astros.

“An allegation of this magnitude is a punch to the gut,” said Vartanian at the time. “Right now Cardinal nation woke up with a collective pit in our stomach. We’re hoping it’s a mild bout of nausea that will be resolved quickly, but there’s also the long-term ramifications: giving those who roundly derided Cardinal fans a new punchline that doesn’t go away.”

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How the Chicago Cubs lost Game 7 of the World Series

Baseball’s commissioners are still convinced it’s OK to let All-Stars decide who gets home field advantage in the World Series. Plus, happy birthday Goose, should the Red Sox fire John Farrell, and are the Cardinals finally out of luck?

It’s a freezing cold October night in Cleveland, but the crowd are on fire for Game 7 of the World Series against the Cubs.

Related: On the other hand: is switch-hitting in sport a dying art?

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From ‘God’ to gotcha: the long decline of Major League Baseball umpires

As the roles of men in blue are whittled away, should umpiring eventually fade to black? Plus, let’s put two pitchers in the Home Run Derby, the Rays are trying to break more molds, the Cubs get new suits and more

Noah Syndergaard was stunned. So was the partisan New York Mets crowd, many of which had barely settled in from the journey to Flushing, Queens. “Thor” had been tossed by young umpire Adam Hamari, an out into the home third inning, for throwing behind Chase Utley. A purpose pitch no doubt, as New York sought to send some semblance of a message to their current Dodgers and previous Phillies torturer. Worthy of ejection? Surely not. Hamari made a snap decision, a wrong one, misusing the power of the umpire while doing what every official in sports strives not to do: become the story. With the main attraction out, the crowd booed, broadcasters pondered and the Mets, without their ace, never had a chance, losing on 9-1 on a late-May holiday evening.

The opposite occurred in the second inning of the Tuesday night match-up between Kansas City and Baltimore. Yordano Ventura threw way inside to Baltimore’s Manny Machado, who took exception to the location and delivered a cold stare and a few choice words for the hurler. There was no warning from home plate umpire Manny Gonzalez. In his next at-bat, the volatile Ventura, who does have a reputation for throwing at players, drilled the O’s third baseman with a 99mph fastball, leading to a bench-clearing brawl. Gonzalez’ failure to read the game and take action in the second inning led to a later incident that caused a major brawl and potential injuries.

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Why the Mets’ Matt Harvey has earned the right to be mediocre

Harvey hasn’t even been that, but if he can recover to a middling level, that will be enough fo New York in 2016. Plus happy birthday Big Sexy, Donald Trump is green all over, another Marlins mess, and more

Charles in New Jersey thinks Matt Harvey drinks too much while on the town flaunting his shoe collection, while Ron in Queens thinks Harvey has developed a bad habit of cupping the ball during his delivery. From talk radio to the broadcast booth to bleachers around baseball, fans and media in New York and beyond are trying to solve the sudden demise of the Dark Knight. It’s his weight, it’s the blood clot, it’s his attitude, it’s the lingering psychological impact of failing after convincing his manager to send him out for the ninth inning in Game 5 of the World Series, and of course, it’s his body’s blowback from a busy 2015 post-surgery season.

Matt Harvey, a franchise cornerstone who once lit up Flushing’s darkest days, who was once an undisputed ace, who was just mere outs away from that Fall Classic performance for the ages, hasn’t hit rock bottom, even if it may have seemed like it on Tuesday night in Washington. The Nats discovered that his third time through the lineup is a charm: ex-teammate Daniel Murphy and company teed off the righty, just as they did during Harvey’s prior start, a performance that has led to even more speculation.

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