Sean Strickland dominates Uriah Hall at UFC Vegas 33

In the main event of UFC Vegas 33, we saw showdown in the middleweight division. Two top eleven contenders battled it out as “Primetime” Uriah Hall (17-9) took on Sean Strickland (23-3).

Entering UFC Vegas 33, Strickland has won four straight. He’s been incredibly active since a two year layoff that started back in 2018. Last October, Strickland made his return and he’s gone 3-0 in the UFC with one stoppage.

The stoppage was an incredibly impressive win over Brendan Allen. In his last fight, he defeated Krzysztof Jotko by decision which setup this UFC headliner opposite Uriah Hall.

Hall has been a curious case over the course of his UFC career. While having all the talent in the world, Hall really never lived up to the hype. That said, the soon to be 37 year old is riding a four-fight win streak into tomorrow night.

We last saw Hall at UFC 261 where he set a record. Hall defeated Chris Weidman after Weidman snapped his leg on a checked kick. It was the first time in UFC history that someone one by TKO without landing a single strike. Prior to that, Hall stopped Anderson Silva last October.

UFC Vegas 33 Recap

Round 1

The UFC Vegas 33 main event kicked off with a touch of the gloves. Hall started out the striking with a stiff jab. However, Strickland countered with a nice jab of his own. Hall was looking to use his movement, but Strickland started walking him down early.

Both men trade big shots at the one minute mark. Nice jab lands for Strickland. Strickland doubles up on the jab as he back Uriah Hall up. Another nice combination lands for Strickland and Hall is looking a little frustrated.

Good counter left hand for Uriah Hall. Powerful leg kick for Uriah Hall lands. Strickland goes right back to the jab and he’s keeping all of his shots down the middle early on. Lots of volume for Strickland and Hall might be hurt here.

Strickland is just walking Uriah Hall down here. Piercing jab lands for Sean Strickland. Nice counter from Hall stops the advances of Strickland. Powerful 1-2 lands for Sean Strickland.

Strickland is so busy here in the first round and Hall isn’t throwing a lot. Another good jab lands for Strickland. Hall starts moving a little more and lands a nice shot. The first round comes to a close and it’s 1-0 Sean Strickland at UFC Vegas 33.

Round 2

Entering the second round at UFC Vegas 33 and Uriah Hall is going to need to show more urgency in this round. Both men trade big jabs to start the second round. Hall seems a little more urgent to start this second.

Good 1-2 lands for Uriah Hall. Nice jab from Strickland lands. Clean combinations land for Strickland and Hall might be hurt. Hall backs against the cage and Strickland starts teeing off. Strickland shoots for a takedown, but Hall defends and they clinch against the fence.

Good uppercut from Strickland and the two break. Jab lands for Strickland, but Hall is the one moving forward here. Good overhand right hand lands for Hall. Hall pressing the action here, but Strickland is still landing good shots.

1-2 finds it’s home for Strickland. Hall lands a jab to the body then throws it up top. Big jab from Strickland lands. Hall being much more aggressive, but Strickland is still slightly getting the better of the striking. Hall lands a vicious calf kick then both men exchange big jabs. The round comes to a close at it’s 2-0 Strickland at UFC Vegas 33.

Round 3

Entering the third round at UFC Vegas 33 and Hall is building a little momentum, but he has to do more in the third. Third round starts with more pressure and jabs from Uriah Hall. Calf kick lands for Hall.

Good jab to the body for Hall lands and this is looking like a different Uriah hall. Hall using a ton of feints here and Strickland has barely thrown in the opening minute. Front kick to the body for Hall.

Strickland lands his first jab of the round and he doubles it up. The two exchange jabs and Hall is slowing a little here. Something happens and Strickland lands something that hurts Hall badly.

Strickland starts throwing bombs and this one looks like it’s almost over. Hall is breaking, but he gets up and he survives. Strickland has his back up against the fence and he slams him to the ground.

Hall is just holding on trying to survive here. Strickland looks like he’s trying to setup a choke and Hall is just holding on for the end of the round here. Good elbows from Strickland. Strickland gets Hall’s back just at the end of the round. 3-0 Strickland here at UFC Vegas 33.

Round 4

Entering the fourth round here at UFC Vegas 33 and it’s desperation time for Uriah Hall. Hall pushes forward with two jabs to start the fourth round. Strickland circles on the outside and lands a jab.

Powerful low kick lands for Uriah Hall. Strickland splits the guard with a nice jab, but Hall keeps pushing forward. Nice combination lands for Strickland and now Strickland is the one that’s pushing forward.

Hall’s corner is begging for him to let his hands go, but he’s not throwing a ton. Both men snap each other’s heads back with jabs. Hall is really struggling with the distance control here in the fourth. Strickland lands a couple of nice straight shots.

Hall answers back with a jab of his own. Another good combination lands for Sean Strickland. Big 1-2 lands for Strickland and Hall is wobbled. Strickland lands a few nice shots and Strickland gets a takedown. Two big knees land for Strickland and Hall is beat up here. The round ends and it’s easily 4-0 Strickland here at UFC Vegas 33.

Round 5

Entering the final round at UFC Vegas 33 and Hall needs a finish. Strickland is looking fresh entering this final round and Hall is wearing it. Hall pushes forward and he’s throwing heat to start the final round.

Strickland throws a big shot of his own that seems to back up Hall. Hall already fading after a furious pace in the opening minute. Strickland clinches Hall and pushes him up against the fence.

The two break and Hall looks exhausted. Hall is throwing with everything he has, but he’s so tired. Strickland is landing a lot of clean shots here. Both men lean on each other in the middle. Strickland looks like he can finish this at anytime.

Hall gets pressed up against the fence again by Strickland. Two minutes left and Uriah Hall is running out of time. Two 1-2s land for Strickland on the break. Strickland goes right back to the clinch after he lands.

Hall is nothing left here with one minute left. Strickland landing shots to the body in the clinch. More good shots from Strickland in the clinch. Hall forces a break, but he can’t land anything big. Strickland sticks to him like glue and this one is over. Dominant performance by Sean Strickland at UFC Vegas 33.

Sean Strickland def. Uriah Hall by Unanimous Decision (50-44, 50-45, 49-46)

New York Yankees Recap: Rizzo homers again in Yankees second win over the Marlins

anthony rizzo, yankees

The New York Yankees entered tonight’s early evening game after a 3-1 win over the Marlins last night when the Yankees saw their newest hitter hit a 449′ foot home run at LoanDepot Park Miami. He became an instant Yankee favorite. The Yankees had the same lineup featuring 4 lefty hitters, including another new Yankee, Joey Gallo. Domingo German faced the Marlins Trevor Rogers. Just before the game, Marlins manager Don Mattingly although vaccinated, tested positive for the Covid virus, the bench coach James Rowson managed the game.

In the top of the first inning, Gleyber Torres went down on strikes. Joey Gallo also went down on strikes. Aaron Judge flew out to right field. At the bottom, the Marlins faced Domingo German. Jazz Chisholm led off, and he lined out to Odor. Miguel Rojas also lined out to Odor. Brian Anderson flew out to Gallo in right for the 1-2-3 inning for German. No score.

Anthony Rizzo led off the second for the Yankees, and a pitch hit him. Giancarlo Stanton doubled, moving Rizzo to third. Rougie Odor got an RBI single driving in Rizzo. With a run driving in two on and no outs, Gary Sanchez hit a long one to right for a ground-rule double driving in Stanton. Tyler Wade went down on strikes. Pitcher Domingo German struck out. Torres struck out. In the bottom, Lewin Diaz popped back to Sanchez. Jorge Alfaro walked. Alfaro stole second.  Bryan De La Cruz walked. De la Cruz was caught off base.  Lewis Brinson struck out for German to get out of the inning. New York Yankees 2 Marlins 0.

Joey Gallo led off the third inning by flying out to center. Judge ground out to second for the second out. Rizzo walked. Stanton hit one to the upper deck in right but foul; he ended up also walking. Odor with two on and two outs singled, loading the bases. With the bases loaded and two outs, Sanchez flew out to left, leaving the bases loaded. At the bottom, Sierra led off by popping out. Rogers stuck out, and Chisholm struck out for a quick inning for German. Yankees 2 Marlins 0.

The fourth was led off by Tyler Wade, who singled to left. German sac bunt moving Wade to second base. Torres flew out to left, by Wade remained at second. Joey Gallo walked. Judge faced the new Marlins pitcher David Hess and stuck out, leaving two Yankees on base. At the bottom, Rojas singled to right. Anderson went down swinging. Diaz popped out to Wade, that was in the shift. Rojas got a stolen base on Sanchez. Alfaro got an RBI triple driving in the first run for the Marlins. A wild pitch allowed Alfaro to score and tie up the game. De La Cruz ended the inning. Yankees 2 Marlins 0.

At the top of the fifth, the Yankees threatened again. Rizzo singled. Stanton singled with Rizzo going to third. Stanton advanced on the throw to third. Odor flew out. Sanchez stuck out. Wade was intentionally walked to pitch to German. But the Yankees inserted Gio Urshela to pinch-hit. The Marlins countered with new pitcher Andrew Bender with the bases loaded, and Rizzo scores as the ball gets past the catcher Alfaro. Urshela struck out, but the Yankees scored, leaving two on base. At the bottom, Brinson faced new Yankee pitcher Lucas Luetge and doubled to the right field wall. Sierra flew out to Judge. Jesus Aguilar’s pinch-hitting for the pitcher struck out as he couldn’t hold back Chisholm struck out to end the inning.  New York Yankees 3 Marlins 2.

The sixth inning was led off by Torres, who was 0-3 on the night flew out to the warning track at left. Gallo tapped right back to the pitcher. Judge, who was also 0-3 on the night and hadn’t got a home run since July 10th, struck out for the fourth time in the game. Rojas led off the bottom by lining out sharply to Stanton in left field. Anderson struck out. Diaz also struck out for Luetge’s fourth strikeout in two innings of work Yankees 3 Marlins 2.

At the seventh, Rizzo led off against new pitcher Steven Okart and homers to right for the second time in as many days in his Yankee debut. Stanton ground out. Odor struck out swinging. Sanchez flew out to right in the end the half, but the Rizzo home run tacked another run for the New York Yankees. At the bottom, Alfaro led off against new pitcher Clay Holmes by popping out to second. De La Cruz ground out to short. Brinson also ground out to short as Holmes has a 1-2-3 inning.  Yankees 4 Marlins 2.

Tyler Wade led off the eighth by a ground out to short. Greg Allen went down looking. Torres popped out to second, going down in order. Sierra led off the bottom Mangneuris Sierra faced new Yankee pitch Chad Green and flew out to left. Isan Diaz pinch-hit stuck out swinging. Chisholm hit it hard but right at Greg Allen in left. Yankees 4 Marlins 2.

In the ninth inning, Joey Gallo hit directly to the second baseman for the first out. Judge flies out to the left-center wall. Rizzo walked to be on base in all five at-bats. Brett Gardner pinch-hit for Chad Green flew out to left. With last licks on the line for the Marlins at the bottom of the ninth, Jonathan Loaisiga was on the mound to close it out for the Yankees. Rojas led off by grounding out to second. Anderson singled past Torres. Diaz reached, but Anderson was out on the base path. Upon review, Anderson went to second. Alfaro went down looking. Miller was sent out for a run for Alfaro. De La  Cruz hit into the force, and the Yankees won the game.

The final score was the New York Yankees 4 and the Marlins 2. The winning pitcher was Lucas Luetge got the win and the loss went to David Hess with Chad Green got his third save of the season.

Knicks exercise team option on Mitchell Robinson, waive Norvel Pelle

Mitchell Robinson

The New York Knicks exercised the $1.8 million team option on center Mitchell Robinson for next season, the team announced on Saturday.

The move maintained Knicks’ large cap space that can reach roughly $53 million entering Monday’s free agency depending on what they do with their free agents.

Robinson will become an unrestricted free agent next summer if the Knicks and his camp cannot agree on a contract extension until the end of next season. The 23-year old center is coming off a pair of serious injuries that limited him to a career-low 31 games last season. He is eligible to sign a four-year extension worth $51 million, according to ESPN’s NBA front office insider Bobby Marks.

Meanwhile, backup center Norvel Pelle, who joined the Knicks late in the season, was waived. Pelle signed a non-guaranteed $2.2 million, two-year deal after his second 10-day contract expired. This move came on the heels of the Knicks selecting Texas Longhorn’s athletic big man Jericho Sims at the backend of the NBA Draft.

On another note, today is the trigger date that guarantees Julius Randle’s $19.8 million salary. The Knicks can tender a four-year $106 million extension this offseason. But Randle can opt for a shorter deal or play out this season for a possible larger payday next summer.

Randle is coming off a career season where he became a first-time NBA All-Star and capped it off with the Most Improved Player award, and a spot in the All-NBA second team.

Follow this writer on Twitter: @alderalmo

 

Mets Game Preview (7/31/21) vs. Cincinnati Reds (55-49)

mets, pete alonso

After a disappointing Friday night loss, the New York Mets and Cincinnati Reds rematch for a Saturday night matinee from Citi Field. The Mets also have a new member as Javier Baez will be in the lineup and play shortstop for his new team. If the Mets Hall of Fame ceremony does not push the game back, the first pitch will be thrown at 7:10 p.m. ET.

The Mets hope to avoid their first under .500 month this season if they can pick up a victory. No player needs a better ending to their July than Michael Conforto. He batted just .173 with 23 strikeouts and heard the boo-birds after taking the hat-trick in Friday’s loss. If the Mets’ offense ever consistently gets going, they will need his bat to get going. Hopefully, the addition of Baez will inject some life into a team that needs a spark with Francisco Lindor on the IL.

The Reds still feel that they can make a playoff run during the final two months of the season. Joey Votto is looking to make history by homering in his eighth consecutive game, which would make him the eighth person in MLB history to accomplish the feat. He will likely have to do it off a left-handed pitcher, which he has only hit two home runs off of all season.

Pitching Matchup

Rich Hill takes the mound in his second start for the Mets. In his first outing with the Mets, he danced around trouble to pitch five innings and hold the Blue Jays to three runs. Due to the Tampa Bay Rays philosophy, he has only thrown 100 pitches once this season. With the beleaguered Mets pitching staff, they will need Hill to pitch like a conventional starter.

Wade Miley takes the mound for the Reds and has put together a strong 2021 campaign. When he faced the Mets earlier this season, he twirled 6.1 innings, with eight strikeouts, and allowed just two runs. Overall, he has a 2.86 ERA over 18 starts and allowed just eight home runs on the season.

Matchups To Lookout For

Wade Miley vs. Kevin Pillar: 9-for-27 (.333), Double, Home Run, Walk, 6 Strikeouts

Wade Miley vs. James McCann: 5-for-13 (.385), Double, 2 Strikeouts

Rich Hill vs. Joey Votto: 1-for-10 (.100), 3 Walks, 2 Strikeouts

New York Giants: Matt Peart makes it off PUP list, will return to practice

New York Giants, Matt Peart

The New York Giants are concerned with an injury to Shane Lemieux at the moment, but a silver lining despite the current situation is that one key member of the offensive line should be coming back from the PUP list and ready to go next practice at training camp.

That player is Matt Peart, who is likely coming into this season as the starting right tackle after spending some limited time there in 2020. That, of course, was originally because starting tackle Nate Solder opted out of the season.

It played a part in the first year tackle Peart playing 11 games last season, while also competing with higher draft pick Andrew Thomas after Thomas had a generally bad start and was benched in week 6 for being late for a meeting.

However, Peart’s offseason progress in 2021 was interrupted when he entered training camp on the physically unable to perform list with a back problem.

Right now, Peart seems like the likely starter at right tackle but is in an unofficial position battle with Nate Solder. Solder is back with the Giants after taking a reduced contract and, while he hasn’t played in a long time and didn’t show much promise during his time on the field as a Giant, has been confident about his physical ability even at 33 years old.

Despite that public facing confidence, many in the fanbase have written Solder off and written Peart in as the likely starter at the position just because of Solder’s age and his low performance as one of the worst starting tackles in the league when he was active with the Giants.

We’ll get to see Peart in action at training camp soon now that his back problem is over with, and that may very well give evidence one way or the other towards his locking up the starting role.

Marquise Goodwin sees opportunity in Chicago Bears offense

Marquise Goodwin, bears

When the Chicago Bears signed veteran wide receiver Marquise Goodwin during the 2021 offseason, the motive was adding speed to the Bears’ offense. A unit that lacked any sort of spark in 2020 enters 2021 with the goal of playing faster on offense.

Wide receivers Allen Robinson and Darnell Mooney are expected to start, providing Goodwin with the opportunity to play in the slot and take the top off defenses. After opting out in 2020 due to COVID-19 concerns, the goal for Goodwin in 2021 is to produce at a high level, doing whatever is needed to help the Bears win.

From a production standpoint, Goodwin has proven that when given opportunities, he can take advantage of them. With 40 career starts, averaging 16.6 yards per reception, Goodwin is no stranger to making big plays in the vertical passing game.

“I see in this offense, a lot of opportunity,” Goodwin said via the Bears official Twitter account. “Got a lot of experience on this team. This offense, a lot of guys who have played a lot of ball.”

The experience that Goodwin is alluding to includes veterans like Robinson and veteran quarterback Andy Dalton, two unquestioned leaders on the Bears offense.

Throughout Goodwin’s career, he’s consistently been a player that has proven to be an effective option in any offense. Besides Goodwin, Chicago also signed veteran wide receiver Damiere Byrd this offseason, further adding speed to the offense, a positive from Goodwin’s perspective.

“We got a lot of fast guys, we got a lot of speed on the team,” Goodwin said. “I’m just glad to just still be the fastest in the league.”

As the Bears continue to prepare for the 2021 season, Goodwin is ready to be a major part of an offense that will present multiple opportunities for playmakers, especially deep balls that Dalton has been able to consistently hit throughout training camp, something that bodes well for Chicago’s offense.

New York Jets make yet another change at kicker, release vet Sam Ficken

New York Jets

The New York Jets have turned to former Oklahoma State Cowboy Matt Ammendola to solve their long-running kicking woes.

The New York Jets have added yet another kicker to their roster, announcing the signing of Matt Ammendola going into the weekend. In a corresponding move, the team released veteran leg Sam Ficken.

Ammendola joins the Jets after four seasons at Oklahoma State (2016-19), successfully converting 77 percent of his triple attempts (60-of-78). He led the Big 12 in scoring (139 points) during his sophomore season in 2017. In his final year, he earned at least 10 points in half of his 14 games. The Pennsylvania native departed OSU second in program history in successful field goals since the turn of the century. Ammendola previously spent time in the Carolina organization, signed in March and released in May.

The Jets’ search for a consistent kicker since the departure of Pro Bowler of Jason Myers after the 2018 season continues with this transaction. No matter who suits up for the Jets in their August 14 preseason opener against the New York Giants, he will become the seventh different kicker (including preseason contests) since Myers inked a four-year deal in Seattle. Ammendola is set to compete for the top kicker spot with Chris Naggar, an undrafted rookie out of Southern Methodist.

Ficken was one of the latest names added to that special teams mix, spending parts of each of the last two seasons as the Jets’ primary leg. He got off to a strong start last season, converting each of his first nine three-point attempts over the five games before a groin injury marred the latter parts of his year. Over four other games, Ficken was only 6-of-9 from three and 4-of-6 on extra points. He was released prior to the Jets’ season final in New England but was signed to a reserve/future contract shortly after.

Geoff Magliocchetti is on Twitter @GeoffJMags

New York Yankee Player Profiles: Getting to know Yankee first baseman Anthony Rizzo (video)

anthony rizzo, yankees

The New York Yankees were very successful by the trade deadline, picking up three pitchers and two high-impact lefty hitters to add to the Yankees lineup; one of those hitters is Anthony Rizzo who came to us in a trade with the Chicago Cubs. Rizzo has spent his entire major league career with the Cubs, where he was one of the most beloved players on the team. He played a big part in the Cub’s first World Series win in 107 years. The eleven-year veteran player has a 36.8 WAR with 244 home runs and a career batting average of .269. Last night in his Yankee debut, he walked, had two hits, and hit his 15th home run of the season.

Now that Rizzo is with the New York Yankees, it’s time for Yankee fans to get to know their new first baseman. Anthony Vincent Rizzo will turn 32 next week. He is a native of Parkland, Florida, and attended the same school, Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, where the mass shooting was in 2018. He was selected in the sixth round of the 2007 draft by the Boston Red Sox. Rizzo’s minor league career started at 17 in 2007 in the rookie class with the Gulf Coast League Red Sox. He was an immediate success.

In December of 2010, Rizzo was traded to the San Diego Padres. After not making the team in spring training to start the 2011 season, he was assigned to the Tucson Padres. Rizzo was called up to the majors after hitting .365 with an OPS of 1.159 and 16 home runs and 63 RBI in 200 at-bats over 52 games in Tucson. He hit his first major league home run on June 11, 2011.

During the winter of 2012, because of his excellent play, he was scheduled to be the Padres starting first baseman, but the Padres acquired Yonder Alonso, who ended up getting the job. Shortly thereafter, Rizzo was traded to the Chicago Cubs.

Rizzo started the 2012 season with the Triple-A Iowa Cubs. His results with the Cubs were the same as with the Padres.  He batted .342 with 23 home runs and 62 RBIs. The Cubs promoted him to the big team, where it was hoped he could help the teams’ struggling offense. He became the first player in Cubs history to have three game-winning RBIs in his first five games. In July, he was named Rookie of the month. He ended his first season with the Cubs with a .285 batting average and 15 home runs.

In 2013 Rizzo cemented himself as a great player and fan favorite. Fans learned that not only was he a good player but a really nice person. In 2014 he earned his first All-Star game and came in 10th in the MVP voting. He would be an All-Star for the next three years and an MVP candidate for the next five years. He was also a Silver Slugger and a four-time Gold Glover. In 2016 he helped the Chicago Cubs win their first World Series in over 107 years, the longest World Series drought in baseball history.

He was an integral part of the last three victories over the Los Angeles Dodgers. He led the team to their first World Series appearance since 1945. He would have 5 RBIs in the World Series and would score 7 runs that lead the Chicago Cubs to their first World Series win since 1908. That year he would also win the Esurance MLB Award for the best media personality. He also won the defensive award saving 11 runs for the Cubs, and led all first baseman getting him his first Fielding Bible Award. He was also nominated for the Roberto Clemente Award. He also got his third MLBPAA Cubs Heart and Hustle Award.

On September 2, 2017, Rizzo became the fourth Cubs player to hit at least 30 home runs, 30 doubles, and 100 RBIs in three or more seasons. For the season, he batted .273/.392/.507 with 32 home runs and 109 RBIs. Unfortunately, he also led the major leagues getting bonked 24 times. On October 27, Rizzo was named the 2017 recipient of the Roberto Clemente Award for his charity’s work to find a cure for childhood cancer. Of winning the award, Rizzo said, “This is amazing. The greatest award you can win. It will go front and center in front of anything I’ve ever done.” In 2018 he had another 101 RBIs. In 2019 he had the highest batting average of his career (.293) with 27 home runs.

The shortened 2020 season was a disappointing season for Rizzo, as it was for many players. He hit only .222 on the season. But he still got the equivalent of 23 home runs and earned his fourth Gold Glove Award at first base.  This season he has bounced back with 14 home runs for the Cubs and a batting average of .248. Earlier in the season, the Cubs offered Rizzo a five-year $70 million extension which he refused.

With the extension refusal and becoming a free agent in 2022, the Chicago Cubs made the difficult decision to let loose of their long-time favorite player and trade him to the New York Yankees. Anthony Rizzo is probably not the player he was in his prime, but he could help the Yankees to their first World Series since 2009. The Cubs were so appreciative of Rizzos’ time with the Cub, and for the man he is, they produced a short video honoring and thanking him.

Yankees’ Anthony Rizzo delivers perfect response to his future and perfect start with new team

anthony rizzo, yankees

It didn’t take long for New York Yankees acquisition Anthony Rizzo to leave his mark in just his first game with the Bombers. Against the Miami Marlins on Friday, Rizzo went 2-for-3 with a solo homer, single, and walk.

After spending his entire career with the Chicago Cubs, Rizzo has found himself in uncharted territory headed toward free agency this upcoming off-season. However, he will spend the remainder of the 2021 campaign wearing pinstripes, and given his positive health history, the Yankees desperately need his services.

Rizzo had nothing but glowing reviews of the franchise and its success throughout the course of history.

“I’ve heard nothing but amazing things about this franchise and how it’s operated from the inside and out and I’m excited to dive in and learn and see everything that the Yankees franchise has to offer,” Rizzo said. “I know it’s amazing and I know the history here, and it speaks for itself.

When it comes to a future contract, Rizzo is only focused on the present, maximizing his opportunity with a Bombers this season and their hopes to reach the playoffs.

“But as far as contracts and whatnot, this is just about winning baseball games and getting on a role with our guys here and jelling and having fun and bringing out the best energy in everyone.”

General manager Brian Cashman stated that his moves were based on the present need and not their thoughts for the future. While Rizzo could be a priority signing and extension this upcoming off-season, they need him to perform now with the team in desperation mode. Sitting 7.5 games back in the AL East behind the Boston Red Sox and 3.5 games back in the Wild Card, it is now or never for the Yankees to spark a late run.

“We added Rizzo for this stretch drive,” Cashman said. “This is all about the 2021 effort. We haven’t really daydreamed into the future at all. The way this trade deadline was going with all the conversations … I don’t think anybody had time to look at much of the future on this stuff. Our intent was to try to increase our chances to give our team an improved opportunity to compete the rest of the way, and that’s really been the focus only.”

The thing about Rizzo is that he is incredibly loyal, and while he wanted to stay with Chicago his entire career, he ultimately will have to find a new home after this season. He’s coming off a seven-year, $41 million deal, with Chicago paying the entire $16.5 million salary for the 2021 season.
Based on his comments regarding the Yankees’ franchise, it is clear he has respect and appreciation for his new team. With his future uncertain, it is entirely possible the Bombers offer him an extension, but with so many big-name players on the books, they will have to find ways to unload a few deals, for example, Aaron Hicks and his seven-year, $70 million contract.

“I said it a lot how I want to stay in Chicago and be a Cub for the rest of my career,” Rizzo said. “Obviously that didn’t work out, but coming into this year you know that at the end of the year you’re a free agent. I’ve never had it before and there’s going to be opportunity to hopefully out there to shine and we’ll see what happens. But that’s so far away from right now and the day-to-day grind it’s going to take to get us back into winning in the playoffs and everything that takes to get there.”

Yankees: Rizzo ‘got those jitters out of the way’ and paced Bombers’ victory with majestic blast

anthony rizzo, yankees

The New York Yankees won 3-1 against the Marlins in Miami, in Anthony Rizzo’s first game with the Bombers. Baseball is magical, so guess who was the star performer of the night? Yes, the former Chicago Cub.

Rizzo came to the Yankees the night before deadline day, in exchange for prospects Kevin Alcantara and Alexander Vizcaino, and made an immediate impact on his Friday debut, going 2-for-3 with a walk, a home run, and two runs scored.

In the sixth inning against Zach Thompson, he deposited a 1-0 pitch into the stands, in a mammoth home run that traveled 449 feet and left the bat at 112 mph.

“It was amazing,” Rizzo said to MLB.com. “Coming in, getting the first at-bat out of the way … and kind of getting those jitters out of the way.”

Yankees’ manager Aaron Boone said Rizzo’s homer was ‘electrifying’

Yankees’ manager Aaron Boone was impressed with what he saw from his new player.

“When you [have] those no-doubters, especially in a close game at the time, there is a little rush of adrenaline when you [kind of say], ‘Ooh.’ It is exciting,” Boone said. “It is something that lights up the dugout. Obviously, him being the player that he is, coming in his first day and getting that kind of hit was pretty cool. It definitely electrified the guys a little bit.”

After his sixth inning homer, he scored again in the eighth frame, on a two-run single by Rougned Odor.

The Yankees’ lineup takes a whole new meaning with their two left-handed hitting additions, Joey Gallo and Rizzo. Both came to the team before the trade deadline and both have a similar profile: power and patience.

They are starting to pay dividends, especially Rizzo, and their presence makes the Yankees much stronger as they try to secure a spot in the postseason.