Wakeup Call: 30 seconds for 4 million; what a deal!


Wakeup Call: 30 seconds for 4 million; what a deal!

Here's your wakeup call -- a combination of newsworthy andor interesting tidbits -- for Thursday, January 10:

By now we all know that no one was elected to the Hall of Fame yesterday, and by now we all know why. But Ray Ratto thinks this "guardians of the game" business became moot the minute Ty Cobb and the racists of baseball's early days were inducted, so applying high moral standards now to the Steroids Bunch is inconsistent and unfair. (CSN Bay Area)

Inconsistent and unfair though it may be, Craig Calcaterra doesn't believe Barry Bonds and Roger Clemens will ever get in. (NBC's Hardball Talk)

Give Jonathan Singleton credit: Rather than blaming it on Adderall or some mysterious ingredient in an over-the-counter cold medicine, or filing appeals because of flaws in the process, he admits he got his 50-game suspension for smoking weed. And accepts it. (CSN Houston)

Duke will be without senior forward Ryan Kelly for a while. (AP)

Five days after assuring everyone he had the best coaching job in America and wasn't going anywhere, Notre Dame's Brian Kelly interviews with the Eagles. (CSN Philly)

Texas linebacker Jordan Hicks won't be charged with sexual assault in connection with an incident that allegedly occurred the night before the Alamo Bowl. (AP)

In today's installmant of Declaring For the NFL Draft, we have Oklahoma's Tom Wort and no fewer than four Tennessee players saying they're in . . . (AP)

. . . and Michigan's Taylor Lewan and Clemson's Tajh Boyd saying they're staying in school. (AP)

R.I.P. Mirko Jurkovic, a lineman on Notre Dame's 1988 national champions. (AP)

Lance Armstrong has pulled his boat out of De Nial (ha, ha, get it?) and begun searching for a "pathway to redemption". (AP via nbcsports.com)

The Flyers' never-ending search for a goalie may be leading them to Bobby Loo. Hope they also trade for a mechanic to pump his tires . . . (NBC's Pro Hockey Talk)

Jets goalie Ondrej Pavelec mans up about the DUI he was charged with while playing in Europe. (Pro Hockey Talk)

Free agent forward Dominic Moore issues a statement thanking people for their sympathy over the death of his wife, Katie. (CSN Bay Area)

Leading the U.S. to gold has earned Diana Taurasi her third USA Basketball Female Athlete of the Year Award. (AP)

Seattle Mayor Mike McGirin says he doesn't know much about the possibility of the Kings moving to his city -- which lost the Sonics to Oklahoma City in 2008 -- but adds, "If it's true, ain't it cool?" (AP)

LeBron James uses the phrase "very frustrating" three times in three sentences when talking about the Heat's rebounding woes. (NBC's Pro Basketball Talk)

The Lakers' losing ways continue, and this one was more frustrating than most. (AP)

The Timberwolves will be without Kevin Love for 8-10 weeks after breaking his right hand for the second time this season. (AP)

Got 4 million burning a hole in your pocket? Buy a 30-second ad for this year's Super Bowl. (NBC's Off The Bench)

Younger announcers -- I heard some of them -- were shaking their heads in bafflement when Jim Harbaugh channeled his inner Jethro Bodine and said Justin Smith would play Saturday night "God willing and the creek don't rise". (CSN Bay Area)

The Packers should have Jordy Nelson and Randall Cobb ready, even though they didn't practice Wednesday. (AP)

Richard Sherman says the Seahawks' secondary will have its hands full Sunday with Julio Jones, Roddy White and Tony Gonzalez. (NBC's Pro Football Talk)

All this RGIII-will-be-ready-for-the-start-of-the-2013-season talk might be a little premature, according to an athletic physician who doesn't work for the Redskins. (CSN Washington)

The Panthers have a new GM, and he's worked for organizations that have been to six Super Bowls. And won three of them. (AP)

The Jets, meanwhile, are still looking. (AP)

John Isner's bruised right knee forces him out of the Australian Open. (AP)

Three things we learned from the Red Sox' 2-1 loss to the Twins


Three things we learned from the Red Sox' 2-1 loss to the Twins

Three Things we learned from the Boston Red Sox' 2-1 loss to the Minnesota Twins:

1) It only seems like David Ortiz can come through every time.

When Ortiz comes to the plate as he did Friday night -- bases loaded, no out, bottom of the ninth, Red Sox trailing by a run -- it seems like a win is a fait accompli.

"I think everybody in the ballpark just assumed this one might have a chance to be ended right there,'' said John Farrell. "He's been so big for us that everybody in the dugout felt the same way -- confident that the stage was set for him to come through with another dramatic moment.''

Instead, Ortiz rolled over a ground ball to second, and with the Twins infield drawn in, it was enough to turn a 4-2-3 double play that took the starch out of the inning for the Sox.

If anything, though, the inning revealed how remarkable Ortiz has been so often. It's not easy to come through even most times, and it's certainly far from automatic.

"The pitcher (closer Brandon Kintzler) made good pitches,'' said Ortiz. "That's the name of the game. I'm always looking forward to something happening. It just doesn't work out all the time.''

2) Eduardo Rodriguez has his slider back.

When Rodriguez endured a rough stretch in late May and June, he seemed to all but abandon his slider, relying almost exclusively on his two-seam fastball and changeup.

But since returning from a stint in Pawtucket, Rodriguez has flashed the slider that made him so effective as a rookie last season.

"Since he's come back,'' said Farrell, "he's added much more depth. He's able to get to the back foot of some righthanders for some swing-and-miss. He was on the plate with three quality pitches for strikes tonight.''

"I feel like I can locate it better, where I want it,'' confirmed Rodriguez. "Outside, inside corner...I'm getting more confident in it. I think I got out of my mind the tipping (pitches) stuff and all that stuff and I'm just working to throw the ball right where I want it.''

It's almost impossible for a starter in the big leagues to survive with just two pitches, as Rodriguez was attempting to do earlier this season. And it seems foolish to even try, given that Rodriguez's slider can be a plus-pitch for him at times.

3) If Mookie Betts has to miss some time, the Red Sox have options in right field.

Farrell said Betts has been dealing with soreness and stiffness in his right knee since after the All-Star break and has been undergoing treatment.

There's no evidence that this is serious, and he's considered day-to-day. But even if Betts needs some time off, or in a worse-case scenario, has to go on the DL, the Sox can do some things with their outfield.

Michael Martinez's best outfield position is right, as he demonstrated Friday night after taking over for Betts in the top of the fifth. Martinez ran a long way to grab a ball in foul territory for the final out in the sixth, then turned in a fine, tumbling catch in the eighth to take extra bases away from Adam Grossman.

Bryce Brentz, who's been in a platoon of sorts in left with Brock Holt, has played a lot of right field in the minors and has the arm strength to play there.

Finally, there's the matter of Andrew Benintendi. The Sox raised some eyebrows with the news that they were having Benintendi move over to left field at Double A Portland, perhaps in anticipation of playing the position for Boston at some point later this year.

Benintendi is a natural center fielder and even though he doesn't much experience in right, if you're athletic enough to play center, you can usually move to either corner spot.

Quotes, Notes and Stars from the Red Sox' 2-1 loss to the Twins


Quotes, Notes and Stars from the Red Sox' 2-1 loss to the Twins

Quotes, Notes and Stars from the Boston Red Sox' 2-1 loss to the Minnesota Twins:


"I think everybody in the ballpark just assumed this one had a chance to be ended right there.'' - John Farrell on David Ortiz's at-bat with no out and the bases loaded in the ninth inning.

"I feel like I can locate it better - outside, inside corner -- so it's given me more confidence.'' - Eduardo Rodriguez on the improvement with his slider.

"I always look forward to something (good) happening; it just doesn't work out all the time.'' - David Ortiz on his ninth-inning at-bat.


* The Red Sox saw a seven-game winning streak at Fenway -- their longest of the season -- snapped.

* Boston has homered in 13 consecutive games.

* The Red Sox bullpen has posted a 1.17 ERA since July 6.

* Mookie Betts became the first Red Sox hitter to hit 20 homers in a season before he turns 24 since Nomar Garciaparra.

* Dustin Pedroia has reached base in 30 straight games.

* The eight strikeouts posted by Eduardo Rodriguez were a season high and one shy of his career high.

* The loss was only the 15th this season in games in which the Red Sox score first.

* Rodriguez has not allowed an opposing baserunner to steal a base since July 5, 2015.


1) Kyle Gibson

Don't let the 5.12 ERA he had coming in fool you. Gibson worked out a little jam in the first, then completely shut the Red Sox down the rest of the way, allowing just one hit and one walk after the first.

2) Brian Dozier

Dozier homered in the second to tie the game, singled in the fourth, walked in the sixth and singled again in the eighth -- reaching base in all four plate appearances.

3) Miguel Sano

Sano invited trouble when he dropped a routine pop-up to allow the Red Sox to put the potential tying run on base in the eighth. But he had three base hits on the night, including a run-scoring double that put the Twins ahead to stay in the sixth.

Sean McAdam can be followed on Twitter: @Sean_McAdam