Drew Smyly Jersey  


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18/03/2019 3:59 am  
A look at what’s happening around the majors today:BRAVE NEW WORLDRookie phenom Ronald Acuna Jr. will try to get the first-place Atlanta Braves off to another fast start when they visit Arizona in a matchup of NL playoff contenders. Acuna hit his eighth leadoff homer Wednesday  , setting a club single-season record, but the Braves blew a late six-run lead in an excruciating 9-8 loss to Boston at home. Brandon Phillips’ two-run homer with two outs in the ninth inning of his long-awaited season debut capped the biggest comeback by the Red Sox this year. On the heels of a three-game sweep, Anibal Sanchez (6-5, 2.98 ERA) looks to get Atlanta back on track when he faces Zack Greinke (13-9, 2.97) and the Diamondbacks in the opener of a four-game series. Acuna has 24 homers, including 17 since the All-Star break.GETTING CLOSERWith their magic number down to eight, the Cleveland Indians attempt to move closer to a third consecutive AL Central title when they play at Toronto. Lefty reliever Andrew Miller (sore shoulder) is expected to throw a bullpen before the game. He’s been on the disabled list since Aug. 29.CLOSING TIMENo telling who the Chicago Cubs will use as their closer when the NL Central leaders open a series at Washington. Brandon Morrow held the job through the All-Star break, but hasn’t pitched since then because of a biceps injury. He hasn’t thrown off a mound during his recovery. Pedro Strop has gotten the ball in the ninth inning lately, but has never been a full-time closer. Steve Cishek and Justin Wilson also could perhaps fill in. Manager Joe Maddon says even if Morrow heals, it’s hard to say how he’d be used.CHECK HIMPhillies third baseman Maikel Franco has returned to Philadelphia to have his sore right wrist examined by a specialist. He didn’t play in the three-game series at Miami this week. Franco is expected to rejoin the team later this week. The Phillies, who have lost four of five while trying to catch Atlanta in the NL East, play this weekend vs. the Mets in New York. SURPRISE David Ross Jersey , Ariz. (AP) — Texas Rangers shortstop Elvis Andrus prepared for the first full-squad workout at a different locker than in past springs.Now 30 and going into his 11th season, Andrus is in a much different place than just his spot in the clubhouse.With star third baseman Adrian Beltre now retired, Andrus will be assuming a bigger leadership role on a team with a lot of 20-something position players in the lineup with him.“It’s something as a player, when you get more years and more experience, you’re looking forward,” Andrus said Monday. “I think this is a natural to happen, be able to lead guys and help them.”Like Beltre did in Texas the past eight seasons, while also preparing the shortstop for this expanded role.Andrus has been with the Rangers longer than anyone else on the roster, a distinction he held even when Beltre was on the team. Andrus is the only player remaining from their consecutive World Series teams in 2010 and 2011.Beltre announced his retirement in November, ending his Hall of Fame-caliber career after 21 seasons with four teams. The four-time All-Star and five-time Gold Glove winner had 3,166 career hits with 477 home runs. His only World Series appearance came in 2011, his first season with Texas.“When you’re missing that Steve Cishek Jersey , it’s tough,” Andrus said. “For me it’s impossible to try and get in his shoes or somebody else try to wear his shoes. … It’s time for everybody to step up and take the next step.”This is the first Rangers spring Andrus will go through without either Beltre or Michael Young, the franchise’s career hits leader who moved from shortstop to third base when Andrus was a rookie a decade ago.That new locker for Andrus is the one that Beltre occupied, and Young had before that.Young is still around the team as a special assistant in the front office. Slugging outfielder Joey Gallo said he’s trying to convince Beltre to come visit the team in Arizona for at least a weekend.“It’s crazy. I was thinking about him the other day, saw pictures of him … It’s just kind of weird,” said Gallo, one of six position players who were 25 or younger last season when playing at least 106 games. “It’s definitely different, we definitely miss him a lot. It’s a new opportunity for us, and a new challenge.”Two-time All-Star shortstop Asdrubal Cabrera signed a one-year contract with the Rangers this winter to play third base. He has started only 52 games at third, all in the past two seasons with the New York Mets and Philadelphia.The Rangers also have first-time manager Chris Woodward, who spoke to the team for about 15-20 minutes in a meeting before taking the field.“I got to say what I wanted to say, tried to speak from the heart Drew Smyly Jersey ,” Woodward said. “A lot of these guys already know my expectations and my idea and vision for moving this team forward. But I just tried to make it as authentic and as real as possible, and kind of lay it out for them.”Woodward said there was nothing in his talk about results, but rather more about his attitude and vision in developing the foundation for a team that will eventually win a championship. The 42-year-old former utility infielder said he won’t take for granted being one of 30 big league managers, but did have some anxiety before his opening address.“I talked to my wife beforehand, I’ll never be able to give a first speech to a team again as a big league manager,” he said. “I told the guys today, I’m going to embrace that. Because the thing I stress to our players is we need to enjoy this.”NOTES: OF Hunter Pence didn’t participate in the first full-squad workout because of right (throwing) shoulder soreness. The Rangers don’t think the issue is serious and said the 35-year-old Pence, in camp on a minor league contract, should only be down a couple of days. …. Speedy OF Ben Revere completed a successful physical and was part of the team’s first workout after signing a Triple-A contract.


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