New York Giants: James Bradberry unconcerned by who plays around him

New York Giants, James Bradberry, logan ryan

The New York Giants moved to improve their secondary this offseason, but injury has thrown a wrench into what the team is building up. Adoree’ Jackson was added to play number two to James Bradberry at corner, but his status is questionable after an ankle sprain and it remains to be seen whether Jackson will be back for week one of the regular season.

It also looks like Jackson will almost certainly sit against the Patriots, leaving open the question of who will get playing time in his place as the Giants bring out more of their starters for the final preseason game.

However, number one cornerback Bradberry isn’t concerned by that development. According to him, the Giants have enough talent at the position that it’s not worth worrying about.

Bradberry not worried about missing Jackson

“I’m confident in whoever they put out there. I was confident last year in whoever they put out there, so I’m going to be confident this year,” Bradberry said on Friday when asked about maybe starting the season without Jackson. “My job is to play well, but also help the guy that I’m playing beside whether he’s a young guy or a veteran. I’m going to try to help whoever they put out there.”

Isaac Yiadom, the cornerback that spent much of last season playing number two, is now with the Green Bay Packers. Darnay Holmes, who is entering his second season, is a candidate to take Jackson’s place. Also in the running is Josh Jackson, who the Giants received in the trade that sent Yiadom to Green Bay.

Bradberry was also asked about what may happen if the opposing quarterback in week 1 targets the opposite side of the field from him. That scenario is another one that didn’t seem to bother Bradberry much.

I watch a lot of film, so whatever I see on film, I’m going to try to tell the other guy that’s playing opposite me so they can make plays as well. We’re not really worried about what he’s going to see. We’re worried about what we’re going to do on the defense, honestly.”

The Giants should get Jackson back relatively soon. It looks like they dodged a bullet on his injury, as it doesn’t appear to be a long term one. Despite this, it still remains a concern that the Giants have a number of current injuries as they approach week 1. And not all of these players are guaranteed to make it back in time for the regular season.

Headed into the last preseason game, it’s still unclear just what the lineup will look like when the Giants take the field against Denver next month.

Daniel Rodriguez gets it done against Kevin Lee at UFC Vegas 35

On the main card of UFC Vegas 35, we saw a fun matchup in the welterweight division. Former top lightweight contender Kevin Lee (18-6) was moving up to 170 pounds to take on Daniel Rodriguez (15-2).

Originally, Lee was supposed to take on Sean Brady tonight. However, after Brady pulled out with an injury, Rodriguez stepped in. This was Lee’s second trip up to the UFC‘s welterweight division.

Lee’s career has been interesting thus far. He started his UFC career 9-2 and that led him to an interim title fight against Tony Ferguson. Lee was having a ton of success in that fight before gassing out and getting submitted. Starting with that fight, Lee is just 2-4 in his last six UFC appearances.

Daniel Rodriguez was biggest guy that Kevin Lee has ever fought. The welterweight who trains with Donald Cerrone has been nearly perfect so far in the octagon. Since making his UFC debut, Rodriguez has gone 5-1 with three finishes.

UFC Vegas 35 Recap

Round 1

The UFC Vegas 35 welterweight contest kicked off with Rodriguez taking the center. Lee opened the striking with a perfect body kick that pushed Rodriguez back. Rodriguez was looking to work his jab early on.

Lee looks for a lead left hook but he’s caught with a jab from Rodriguez. Another nice body kick lands for Lee. Lee loads up on a right hand that juts falls short, but he’s pushing forward with a lot of pressure.

Nice jab from Rodriguez as he circles away from the cage. Lee steps in and throws a big head kick. Off the kick he tries to get a takedown attempt, but Rodriguez is able to keep the fight standing.

Two big jabs and a low kick lands for Rodriguez. Nice 1-2 lands for Rodriguez. Lee gets deep on a takedown attempt and he’s able to wrestle Rodriguez down to the ground.

Lee settles into half guard and starts working his elbows. Rodriguez seems content with just holding on here as the round nears the end. The bell sounds and it’s 1-0 Kevin Lee at UFC Vegas 35.

Round 2

The second round at UFC Vegas 35 gets underway with a low kick from Rodriguez. Rodriguez looking loose on the feet here as he lands a 1-2 on Lee. Lee looking composed here, but he eats a nice left from Rodriguez.

Beautiful low kick and jab lands for Rodriguez. Lots of volume in the opening 90 seconds from Rodriguez. Lee shoots for a takedown and he’s deep on a double leg. Rodriguez defends well, but he can’t stop Lee from getting him down.

Lee spins to Rodriguez’s back, but Rodriguez spins and now he’s in the top position. However, Lee immediately works his way up to his feet and we are back to striking. Nice right straight lands for Lee. He follows it up with another combination and now Lee is looking loose.

Left straight lands for D-Rod. Another stiff left lands for Rodriguez. Rodriguez lands a shot and Lee appears to be hurt by it. He shakes it out and Rodriguez is zoning in here. Lee seems to have recovered, but he’s getting caught a lot by D-Rod here.

Nice lead right hook lands for Rodriguez. Lots of pressure here from Rodriguez as he lands another nice left hand. Big combination lands for Rodriguez and Lee is hurt badly. However, Rodriguez rushes in and Lee shoots desperately for a takedown and holds on. Great round for D-Rod at UFC Vegas 35.

Round 3

Heading into the final round here at UFC Vegas 35 and I have it 1-1. Rodriguez starts the final round with immediate pressure and he takes the center. Lee tries to throw a big shot but misses badly.

Good combination lands for Rodriguez. Rodriguez is using his jab beautifully here. Lee goes for a head kick, but nothing is home. Lee is looking a looking tired here and Rodriguez is coming on strong.

Rodriguez defends a takedown and lands a massive left on the break. Another combination from Rodriguez and he’s pouring it on. However, Lee lands a massive leg kick that seemingly hurt Rodriguez.

Lee shoots immediately and gets a big takedown. Absolutely nightmare here for Rodriguez as Lee is holding him down. Rodriguez gets up, but he can’t shake Kevin Lee off of him. Rodriguez uses an explosion to break Lee’s grip and were back to striking.

Massive combination lands for Rodriguez almost immediately. Both guys are looking tired here. Lee pushes forward but nothing lands. Both men trade good shots and Lee shoots for another takedown.

However, Rodriguez defends well and we’re striking with one minute left. Body kick lands for Kevin Lee. Nice combination lands for Rodriguez lands. He’s doubled up the striking numbers on Lee. Lee lands a good combination just as the round ends. Great fight, but I lean D-Rod at UFC Vegas 35.

Daniel Rodriguez def. Kevin Lee by Unanimous Decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)

NASCAR: Ryan Blaney steals another as playoff field is set

Blaney’s second consecutive win came in the NASCAR Cup Series’ regular season finale at the hallowed ground of Daytona.

Ryan Blaney’s spot in the NASCAR Cup Series playoffs was well-secured, but that didn’t stop him from going all-out for the win in the regular season finale on Saturday night at Daytona International Speedway.

As the victor in an overtime finish, Blaney has won consecutive Cup Series races for the first time in his career after last week’s triumph at Michigan. The win at this weekend’s Coke Zero Sugar 400 makes him one of only four drivers to win at least three races this season, joining Kyle Larson, Martin Truex Jr., and Alex Bowman.

Blaney’s No. 12 Team Penske Ford beat out several drivers who desperately needed a win to qualify for the Cup Series playoffs, which begin next Sunday at Darlington Raceway. As late wrecks dominated the final stages of Daytona’s summer event, Blaney took the lead from the winless Chris Buescher before holding off a final challenge from other trophy-seekers like Austin Dillon, Ross Chastain, and Daniel Suarez. Chaos eventually erupted behind Blaney, as one final wreck that took out several contenders shut down the affair.

Buescher finished in the runner-up spot, Bubba Wallace, Ryan Newman, and Ryan Preece rounded out the top five in the 400-mile event originally scheduled for 160 laps.

Blaney lingered in the upper half of the field for most of the evening, which was a mostly peaceful affair before desperation took over. The first two stages, 50 circuits apiece, were taken by Chase Elliott and Blaney’s Penske teammate Joey Logano. Blaney, Logano, and the other Ford Mustangs in the lead pack topped off on fuel with 37 laps to go. Chevrolets and Toyota were expected to pit shortly after but neither group made it to pit road when Garrett Smithley’s No. 53 Chevrolet spun, collecting Rick Ware Racing teammates Joey Gase and Cody Ware. The Fords jumped back out to the front of the pack while the other lead-lap cars pitted.

Two separate multi-car wrecks at laps 146 and 157. The latter saw Matt DiBenedetto miss out on his first career victory once again, as the 238th career start of his Cup career ended when he got together with leader Chase Elliott. Other notable vehicles involved included Denny Hamlin, Brad Keselowski, Kyle Busch, and Christopher Bell.

That latter incident set up the overtime finish which allowed Blaney to capture his third win, as well as the second seed in the Cup Series playoff bracket, earned through victories and stage wins throughout the 26 regular season races.

Other big winners on Saturday were Kyle Larson and Tyler Reddick. Larson (21st) clinched the regular season championship, which affords him an extra 15-point advantage in the playoff standings while Reddick (6th) beat out his teammate Dillon (18th) for the final postseason slot. View the whole Cup Series playoff grid below:

For full results, click here.

Geoff Magliocchetti is on Twitter @GeoffJMags

UFC announces Rose Namajunas – Zhang Weili 2

One of the biggest women’s fights of the year will get a part two. Tonight at UFC Vegas 35, the promotion announced that we will see a strawweight title rematch in November at UFC 268 as Rose Namajunas (10-4) will defend her title against Zhang Weili (21-2).

These two ladies first fought back in April at UFC 261. The card was the first PPV card with a full crowd and their first fight was one of the most highly anticipated female fights in the promotion’s history.

Zhang Weili looked like she was going to reign over the strawweight division for a long time. The first UFC champion born in China had dominated virtually every opponent that stood in her way on her way to capturing the title.

She won the Fight of The Year in 2020 when she defeated Joanna Jedrzejczyk in her first title defense. However, UFC 261 was going to be her toughest fight to date. Many had looked at Rose Namajunas as the best in the world when she was truly focused on fighting.

Well, Namajunas was focused at UFC 261. Zhang Weili was just feeling out the fight in the opening 90 seconds when she was met with a brutal head kick that put her out. Namajunas became the first woman to regain a UFC title after losing it.

Second UFC reign for Namajunas

The journey of Rose Namajunas has been something to see inside the UFC. Namajunas was first introduced via The Ultimate Fighter when the promotion held the show to crown a 115 pound champion.

While Namajunas was looked at as a favorite, she lost in the finals to Carla Esparza. Following that loss, Namajunas focused on improving and she gradually rose to the top of the UFC’s strawweight division.

She pulled off a massive upset when she knocked out and dethroned Joanna Jedrzejczyk to become the strawweight champion. She proved she was the best by beating Jedrzejczyk in an immediate rematch.

Namajunas finds herself in virtually the same position now. She knocked out Zhang Weili at UFC 261 and now she’s fighting her in an immediate rematch. It’ll be interesting to see if history repeats itself in November.

Mets retire Jerry Koosman’s number 36: ‘I don’t know if I deserve it’

Simeon Woods-Richardson

The New York Mets are having a disastrous second half and are quickly falling out of playoff contention. That doesn’t mean, however, that they can’t honor their legends, such as former pitcher Jerry Koosman.

Before Saturday’s game, the Mets retired Koosman’s number 36 in a heartfelt ceremony in Citi Field. It was a very special day for a beloved member of the “Miracle Mets,” one who was a very important piece in the 1969 World Series, the first one won by the franchise.

Koosman’s in the third number that the Mets retire among players, after Tom Seaver (No. 41) and Mike Piazza (No. 31). Managers Gil Hodges (No. 14) and Casey Stengel (No. 37) also had their numbers retired.

Some of Koosman’s teammates, such as Art Shamsky, Wayne Garrett and Ed Kranepool, were present, as was Piazza.

“I’m thankful that they thought so much of me to retire my number,” Koosman said according to the Mets’ official site. “I know I’m joining a great crew that they had their numbers retired. I don’t know if I deserve it. I guess we are going to get on with it.”

A fantastic career with the Mets

Koosman spent 12 years with the Mets and won 140 games, had a 3.09 ERA and had a 21-win season in ’76.

He reminisced some memories of his playing days and got to enjoy the applauses of Mets’ fans. “A lot of things pop up — different memories. You see something, you have a related story,” Koosman said.

During a 19-year career in MLB, the pitcher also wore the Minnesota Twins, Chicago White Sox, and Philadelphia Phillies’ uniforms. He was elected to a couple of All-Star games and achieved 222 career wins and 2,556 strikeouts.

He is perhaps best remembered for his complete-game victory in Game 5 of the 1969 Series, as he dominated a tough Baltimore Orioles’ lineup en route to the franchise’s first career Fall Classic win.

New York Giants could make a cost-efficient decision on the defensive line

New York Giants, BJ Hill

The New York Giants have plenty of depth on their defensive line. The Giants have invested a multitude of assets into their defensive line to build it up as one of the best units in the NFL. Dexter Lawrence and Leonard Williams are a sweet starting tandem backed up by the likes of BJ Hill, David Moa, and Raymond Johnson III.

In his 2018 rookie season, BJ Hill racked up 5.5 sacks, an incredible number to reach as a rookie interior defensive lineman. Since then, Hill has been somewhat buried on the depth chart as the team has accumulated more talent on the interior.

BJ Hill is entering his fourth season in the NFL and is slated to earn over $2 million with a cap hit of $2,440,379. Some might view this as a hefty price to pay for a second-string interior defensive lineman. Considering the other names listed on the roster, the Giants could make a cost-efficient decision and move on from BJ Hill before the start of the season.

Why the Giants might move on from BJ Hill

BJ Hill has been an excellent second-string defender for the Giants over the past couple of years. But his expensive cap hit could encourage the Giants to move on from Hill. The Giants have a slew of young defensive linemen on the roster that could challenge BJ Hill for his position.

David Moa and Raymond Johnson III are two young defensive linemen that have impressed this summer. Both players are pushing for a roster spot. The Giants could consider keeping one or both of these players on the roster and moving on from BJ Hill. This would be a cost-efficient strategy.

Cutting or trading BJ Hill would free up $2,183,000 in salary cap space. This extra cash could be invested in New York’s offensive line or another position of need. David Moa has a cap hit of only $663k and Raymond Johnson’s cap hit is only $670k. These two players can be kept around at a much cheaper price tag than BJ Hill. Considering BJ Hill is not even a starter on the Giants’ defense, this is a roster move that the Giants should heavily consider.

BJ Hill is a great player, so he might garner some trade interest from another team. It would also make sense for the Giants to keep Hill as quality depth. But the need to add talent at other spots on the roster might compel the Giants to free some cap space by moving on from BJ Hill.

What are your thoughts on BJ Hill? Should the Giants look to move on from Hill and give Moa or Johnson III a shot at the roster?

New York Jets: Ty Johnson has fought his way into a case for RB1 duties

Ty Johnson was a forgotten man of sorts in the New York Jets’ rushing competition, but he has been anything but silent this preseason.

The New York Jets’ 2020 season went so awry, that one could argue that the team failed to even lose the proper fashion.

There was never any use in whining about the Jets’ late victories over playoff squads from Los Angeles and Cleveland. Tanking is a tired exercise where those that do the deed never get to enjoy the rewards created by fans’ insistence they throw games. Besides, if Zach Wilson is the supposed consolation prize for missing out on Trevor Lawrence, early returns suggest that Jets fans are more than happy with that trade-off.

Once it became clear that Jets football had been swallowed up by the cesspool that was the year 2020 A.D…and, let’s face it, that happened pretty early on in the campaign…Gang Green had a macabre gift in the form of consequence-free football contests that would allow them to empty their bench and bestow game day reps to raw talent looking to prove their NFL mettle. Jobs could’ve won and a team with more question marks than an episode of Jeopardy! could’ve gained some clarity.

Alas, the Jets opted to spend their time working with relics of Sundays past in desperate attempts to avoid the immortality of imperfection. Gregg Williams probably should’ve been dismissed long before that ill-fated blitz gave Las Vegas a win. Sam Darnold spent his final year in green throwing to first-round washouts (i.e. Breshad Perriman) and antiques from championship squads (i.e. Chris Hogan). Of course, nothing more needs to be written about the bizarre Frank Gore farewell tour that accomplished nothing other than having Gore reach the 16,000-yard plateau in a Jets helmet (the football equivalent of Wade Boggs getting his 3,000th hit in the colorful duds of the Tampa Bay Devil Rays).

But in the midst of the carnage that was 2020, some Jets began to establish themselves, giving the franchise at least some breadcrumbs. Running back Ty Johnson might’ve been one of them if the Jets ever gave him a true opportunity.

Johnson’s New York arrival was met with little fanfare, unlike his predecessor. He joined the Jets on Oct. 2 on waivers. He came hours after the equally woebegone Detroit Lions bid him farewell after a year-plus and 11 days before the team unofficially waved the white flag on 2020 through the release of Le’Veon Bell. The Jets, to their credit, did try to give La’Mical Perine a chance but went back to Gore after the fourth-round choice was dealt nearly after kind of 2020 football calamity (including a training camp injury and placement on the COVID-19 list). Johnson wound up having only eight carries over his first six games as a Jet.

That was before history happened.

In the aforementioned heartbreaker against the Raiders, Johnson broke the Jets’ 38-game moratorium on triple-digit yardage games, tallying 104 on 22 carries. The accomplishment got lost in the chaos of Williams’ blunder but hinted at better days for the New York offense.

Alas, Johnson never received another extended opportunity to prove he could be a sustainable (and, more importantly after the Bell debacle, affordable) long-term option behind the Jets’ new quarterback. He received only 23 carries over the rest of the season. While that tally didn’t include some strong aerial performances (i.e. 6 receptions, 39 yards, and a score in the Jets’ first win over the Rams) it didn’t stop the Jets from addressing their rushing issues. Two-time Super Bowl participant Tevin Coleman was added on a one-year deal while another fourth-round selection, North Carolina’s Michael Carter, is viewed as a long-term asset).

 Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

With such accomplished resumes ahead of him on the depth chart, it’s easy, almost understandable that Johnson would get lost in the fold. Despite being one of the rare Jets who filled his job adequately in 2020 (team-best 4.7 average on 54 carries), Johnson has found himself fighting for his NFL livelihood once again. His time in Detroit, who chose him in the sixth round of the 2019 draft, ended in part because of Adrian Peterson’s arrival, as there was no place for him next to Kerryon Johnson and D’Andre Swift.

But, in other words, camp has been business as usual for Johnson who has never viewed himself as an essential roster lock in any stop of his football journey.

“I’m always practicing like I’ve got to make the team,” Johnson, a Maryland alum, told Kyle Bennett of the Cumberland Times-News in July. “At the end of the day, I don’t care what articles come out, I don’t care what articles say I’m gonna start, I don’t care about articles saying I’m going to get cut. My whole mentality is like, ‘I’m trying to make the team. I’m trying to put food on my plate, trying to put food on my family’s plate.’ And that’s just the mentality. So yeah, just making that team and securing my spot is definitely the goal, of course.”

“The goal is just to win,” he continued. “If I can contribute in any way, if that means me blocking on third down, if it means me, you know, cutting the leg on a D-end or something like that, or take on a three tech because the guard has to go down and block with the nose, then, by all means, that’s what I’m gonna do. The main goal overall is just to win as a team, really.”

Johnson has certainly been doing his part in that last regard, playing a big role in the Jets’ semi-perfect preseason (2-0-1). He’s currently third on the Jets’ rushing depth chart behind Coleman and Perine but has earned a majority of the summer carries, totaling 108 yards on 28 attempts behind an offensive that has been missing of its vital cogs (i.e. Alijah Vera-Tucker). Johnson went somewhat viral in Friday’s finale against Philadelphia. Not only did he provide a touchdown in the Jets’ comeback effort toward a 31-31 tie, but he also made the internet go crazy when he barreled over an Eagles defender en route to a first down on a Jets scoring drive. Johnson had 56 yards on 13 carries in the finale, giving him 108 on 28 tries in the trio.

“He converted a third-and-short, was moving piles, lowering his shoulder and getting tough, aggressive yards. That was a great plus for him,” head coach Robert Saleh said in video provided by the Jets after the game. “The thing about it is he still has so much more in the tank. That was a great step forward for him. He did a really nice job.”

There’s no arguing that Johnson may face an uphill battle in terms of making an impact with the 2021 Jets. Heck, one could argue that the best way he can immediately the Jets is trade to a rushing-hungry team like Jacksonville, who just lost rookie sensation Travis Etienne for the whole season.

But never mind the idea of RB1: for the time being, no other rusher on the Jets’ roster is defining the idea and intent of Saleh’s already-famous “All Gas, No Brake” mantra better than Johnson.

“(The Jets) been really challenging me to do all the things that (Saleh) has mentioned. That’s all I was really harping on over the summer,” Johnson said after Friday, per Al Iannazzone of Newsday. “Tight turns when I catch the ball. Violent cuts. It doesn’t have to be finding the right crease.”

“Be patient but violent. When I’m going downhill, be violent going downhill.”

Geoff Magliocchetti is on Twitter @GeoffJMags 

New York Yankees Recap: Yankees winning streak ends at 13, A’s 3-2

New York Yankees, NYY, Aaron Judge, Giancarlo Stanton

Today the New York Yankees went for win number 14 in a row. It was the third game of a four-game set between the Yankees and the Oakland Athletics at Oakland Coliseum. Nestor Cortes Jr. was on the mound for the Yankees and Frankie Montas for the Athletics. The winning streak was broken as the Athletics won the game 3-2.

DJ LeMahieu led off for the Yankees and chopped out to first. Anthony Rizzo flew out to left field. Aaron Judge, who accounted for four of yesterday’s Yankees runs, hit a doubled on a hit to left that Canha couldn’t handle. For Judge, it was his 20th game on base. Giancarlo Stanton went down on strikes to end the half. At the bottom, Josh Harrison led off by striking out. Starling Marte flew out to Stanton in right. Matt Olson worked a walk. Then, Yan Gomes flew out to Judge in center to end the inning scoreless.

The second inning was led off by Joey Gallo, who lined out to center. Luke Voit struck out swinging. Gary Sanchez ground out to third.  Matt Chapman led off the bottom by flying out to Gallo and left. Mark Canha flew out to Judge in center. Chad Pinder doubled to left. Sean Murphy walked. Tony Kemp got an RBI single scoring Pinder. With runners on the corners, Harrison popped out to right, but Cortes was called on a balk driving in another run. Oakland Athletics 2 and the Yankees 0.

Rougie Odor struck out to start the third inning. Andrew Velazquez ground out. LeMahieu went down on strikes letting the Yankees go down in order. At the bottom, Marte led off by doubling on an unsuccessful scoop by Rizzo. Marte stole third but was out, but Boone couldn’t challenge. Olson struck out. Gomes lined out to short, but Marte was caught off third base for the final out.  Oakland 2 Yankees 0. That final out, he was clearly safe, but the review called him out. Bob Melvin, the Oakland manager, argued and was thrown out of the game.

Rizzo led off the fourth but flying out to left. Judge flew out to the center-field wall. Stanton flew out to foul territory in left. At the bottom, Chapman hit a home run putting the A’s up by three runs. Canha flew out to left. Pinder walked. Murphy flew out to left. Kemp ground out to end the inning. Oakland 3 Yankees 0.

Gallo popped out to left. Voit lined out to right. Sanchez ground out for a very fast inning for Montas. At the bottom, Harrison popped out. Marte singled on a ball not handled by Rizzo for an E3. Marte stole second. Olson struck out swinging. Gomes went down on strikes to end the inning. Oakland 3 Yankees 0.

The sixth inning was led off by Rougie Odor ground out to first. Velazquez popped out to third baseman Chapman. LeMahieu walked. Rizzo tapped into the glove of the catcher Gomes for the final out. Chapman led off the bottom of the sixth by lining out to Velazquez. Canha singled when Rizzo couldn’t come up with the ball, and that ended Cortes’s game. Albert Abreu came in to face Pinder, who popped out to Velazquez to end the inning. Oakland 3 Yankees 0.

Montas has only allowed one hit in the game up to the seventh. Aaron Judge led off the seventh inning by getting a hit to left field. Judge got both of the hits in the game. Stanton struck out. Gallo hit into a double play to end the half scoreless for the Yankees. At the bottom, Kemp doubled to right. Harrison ground out to second. Marte ground out. Olson was intentionally walked. Gomes struck out to end the inning. Oakland 3 Yankees 0.

Montas was out of the game in the eighth inning, replaced by Andrew Chafin, who faced Luke Voit, who singled to center. Sanchez lined out to second. Odor struck out swinging. Velazquez was pinch-hit by Gio Urshela, who chopped one to third to end the half. At the bottom, Chapman against Lucas Luetge flew out to Gallo, who saved a run. Canha hit out sharply to short. Pinder struck out to end the inning. Athletics 3 Yankees 0.

At the top of the ninth with last licks for the New York Yankees, they faced the Athletics closer, Sergio Romo. For the Yankees, it was the top of the lineup with LeMahieu leading off; he lined out to third. Rizzo got a single to no man’s land in center. Aaron Judge hit a two-run homer drawing the Yankees within one run. Stanton popped out to second. Gallo ground to Harrison to end the game and end the Yankees winning streak at 13 consecutive games.

The final score was the Oakland Athletics 3 and the New York Yankees 2. The winning pitcher was Sean Montas, the loser Nestor Cortes Jr. and the save went to Sergio Romo.

 

 

Yankees: Aaron Boone reveals plans for Andrew Heaney upon Corey Kluber’s return

andrew heaney, yankees

Despite having a 5.48 season ERA, including a 6.23 mark in five games and 26 innings with the New York Yankees, left-handed starter Andrew Heaney was starting to come around with the help of pitching coach Matt Blake.

Heaney, acquired from the Los Angeles Angels on the day of the trade deadline, was supposed to be a depth addition for the Yankees. He had a 9.00 ERA after his first three starts, but by embracing a fastball-heavy approach in the upper part of the zone, he had much better results in his last two outings.

On August 18, he dominated the Boston Red Sox for seven innings of two hits, two walks, an earned run and four strikeouts; and the week after that, on the 24th, the stymied the Atlanta Braves for four frames, allowing just two runs and striking out five.

As Yankees’ right-hander Corey Kluber (who has a 3.04 and is returning on Monday from a lengthy absence due to a shoulder injury) makes his return next week, manager Aaron Boone indicated that Heaney will likely be moving to the bullpen.

The Yankees will “piggyback” Kluber and Heaney

Boone said, per Marly Rivera of ESPN, that he expects to “piggyback” Heaney after Kluber starts on Monday against the Halos. The skipper explained that he is also expecting “a few strong innings” from Kluber on next week.

Kluber hasn’t pitched for the Yankees since late May, when he injured his shoulder. He threw a no-hit, no-run that month against his former team, the Texas Rangers.

Gerrit Cole, Nestor Cortes Jr., Jordan Montgomery, Jameson Taillon, and now Kluber will form the New York Yankees’ rotation for the next few weeks. Heaney, meanwhile, will help Kluber in his buildup process, and will remain a quality depth piece moving forward.

The Yankees have an ongoing 13-game winning streak and started turning their season around in July, a process that was expedited by their savvy deadline acquisitions.

WATCH: Knicks’ Quentin Grimes and RJ Barrett are putting in the off-season work

new york knicks, rj barrett

The New York Knicks have built out a solid foundation of young players with upside. In the most recent draft, the front office snagged Quentin Grimes out of Houston to bolster the shooting guard position. During Summer League play, Grimes increasingly became more efficient, averaging 32.8 minutes per game and scoring 15.3.

Grimes shot 41.6% from the field and 40.7% from the three-point range, averaging nine attempts per contest. He also picked up 1.3 steals per game, 3.0 assists, and 6.3 rebounds.

Overall, he showcased his abilities as a scorer, but he is buried on the depth chart behind options like Alec Burks and Immanuel Quickley. However, Grimes will be pushing for minutes during his rookie season, and if the Knicks can produce enough offensively, Grimes could pick up valuable garbage minutes toward the end of games.

Grimes has been working diligently to improve his qualities — working on shock creation and shooting form. Considering how he finished the Summer League, scoring 66 total points in the final three games, the 25th overall pick clearly has solid attributes that translate to the next level.

Aside from Grimes, who is 21 years old, fellow teammate RJ Barrett has spent two years in the NBA is the same age. Last season, Barrett played in all 72 games despite not being old enough to buy an alcoholic beverage in New York. He averaged 17.6 points, 3.0 assists, 5.8 rebounds, and shot 44% from the field. He also posted a career-high 40% from downtown, attempting 4.3 per game. His effective field-goal percentage settled at nearly 50%, as Barrett feasted in the corners from three-point range.

The young shooting guard is a starting-level talent that is just hitting his stride in the NBA after building muscle mass and experience. Barrett entered the league as a skinny guard, but he’s added plenty of size and weight to take on more physical defenders and drive to the basket with authority. With superior athleticism and great defensive prowess, Barrett will only be looking to improve upon his strengths this off-season.

During Drew Hanlen’s “Pure Sweat Run” this past week, Barrett featured with some prominent names in the NBA, including Carmelo Anthony.

It is nice to see the Knicks’ young players taking this off-season seriously and continuing to put the work in to improve ahead of an important 2021–22 season. With the front office injecting more talent and funds into the bolstering of the team, the Knicks have all the potential in the world.