Wakeup Call: Giants get a hand in beating Cowboys

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Wakeup Call: Giants get a hand in beating Cowboys

Here's your wakeup call -- a combination of newsworthy andor interesting tidbits -- for Monday, October 29:

BASEBALL
Hail to baseball's new kings. (CSN Bay Area)

And they weren't good and lucky; they were just good. (CSN Bay Area)

The Tigers are left muttering two familiar words: Wha' happened? (NBC's Hardball Talk)

And just to add injury to insult, Tigers second baseman Omar Infante suffered a broken hand when he was hit by a pitch in the ninth inning. (AP)

COLLEGE BASKETBALL
Just like old times: Indiana is ranked No. 1 in the AP preseason poll . . . and that hasn't happened since 1979-80. (AP)

Minnesota assistant Saul Smith, the son of head coach Tubby Smith, will keep his job despite a DUI arrest. (AP)

COLLEGE FOOTBALL
Marcus Lattimore suffered a gruesome leg injury Saturday -- as anybody who saw it knows -- but South Carolina coach Steve Spurrier, for one, believes his star running back will eventually play again. (AP)

Notre Dame is now No. 3 in BCS standings. (AP)

But where will the Irish be when the season ends? It could wind up being, in JJ Stankevitz' words, "the most controversial year in BCS history". (CSN Chicago)

Mama, don't let your babies grow up to be Maryland quarterbacks. (AP)

GOLF
Nice work if you can get it, eh Tiger? And Rory? (AP)

HOCKEY
Yes, it's true: The NHL season is in serious jeopardy. (CSN Philly)

And why? Well, one of the reasons is that Bettman and crew fatally underestimated who they were up against in the NHLPA's new executive director, Donald Fehr. (NBC's Pro Hockey Talk)

Ryan Suter has two words for Wild owner Ted Leipold: Never mind. (Pro Hockey Talk)

PRO BASKETBALL
No such luck, Celts: LeBron James' bum ankle won't keep him out of Tuesday's opener. (AP)

But Kobe Bryant's fortune isn't as good. (NBC's Pro Basketball Talk)

The Rockets are thrilled that James Harden's on their side now. (CSN Houston)

The Thunder say they made an "extraordinary effort" to keep Harden, but ran up against the financial limits of small-market franchises. (AP)

PRO FOOTBALL
Somebody wake up Mercury Morris and Don Shula for the 2012 revival of 'Grumpy Old Men': The Falcons are 7-0 after their whipping of the Eagles. (AP)

Man, people can be so touchy: He trash talked 'em all week and danced all over the field when Atlanta was way ahead late in the game, but Asante Samuel doesn't think that's any reason for Andy Reid to have snubbed him afterwards. (CSN Philly)

Think it might have been the Eagles' lack of pride? (CSN Philly)

Or maybe their (soon to be ex?) quarterback? (CSN Philly)

If this is what Peyton Manning is like at less than 100 percent, the NFL better pray he never gets healthy. (NBC's Pro Football Talk)

Hey, Steve: Imagine how bad they would have beaten you if they were at your level. (CSN Chicago)

How long can you keep this up, Rex? (Pro Football Talk)

Were Dez Bryant's hands just a smoodge smaller, the Cowboys would have had an incredible come-from-behind victory over the Giants. (AP)

SOCCER
And in a bit of shameless self-promotion: NBCUniversal will soon be your exclusive home for the English Premier League! (NBC's Pro Soccer Talk)

Kimbrel ninth-inning meltdown doesn’t alarm Farrell

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Kimbrel ninth-inning meltdown doesn’t alarm Farrell

NEW YORK -- John Farrell isn't necessarily alarmed by Craig Kimbrel's poor outing Wednesday night, viewing it as an aberration. But just the same, he'd like to get his closer into a game on the final weekend to flush the bad taste of Wednesday's ninth.

Until the clincher, Kimbrel had allowed just two hits in the previous 23 at-bats (.087) since Sept. 4. And since being re-instated from the DL on Aug. 1, Kimbrel was 13-for-13 in save opportunities with 32 strikeouts in 18 innings pitched and a .113 batting average against.

Kimbrel was brought into the game in the bottom of the ninth and allowed a leadoff single to Brett Gardner before issuing three straight walks, the last of which forced in a run.

He threw 28 pitches and didn't record an out before being lifted in favor of Joe Kelly, who allowed Mark Teixeira's walk-off grand slam in a 5-3 Yankees victory.

"He was erratic, there's no doubt,” said Farrell. "The command was not there. The power was there, obviously, but the command was not. It turned into a situation where he gets to [almost] 30 pitches. Could we have let him go further, or could the decision have been made to leave him in the game? Sure

"But [Wednesday] night was more of an aberration. Certainly, since he's come off the DL, he's been stingy in those situations. That was a one-time outing last night [given the unusual circumstances].”

Farrell said it's "important” to get all of the Red Sox relievers into games before the season ends Sunday.

"How often, how high stress...the games will dictate that,'' Farrell said. "But yeah, it will be important to Craig back on the mound before we end, regardless of whether it's a save situation.”