Wakeup Call: Clock's ticking on your powder toss, LeBron

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Wakeup Call: Clock's ticking on your powder toss, LeBron

Here's your wakeup call -- a combination of newsworthy andor interesting tidbits -- for Thursday, October 18.
AUTO RACING
Dale Earnhardt Jr. could be racing again Oct. 28 at Martinsville. (AP)
BASEBALL
When it rains, it pours for the Yankees. (NBC's Hardball Talk)

It's surgery, and a four- to five-month recovery period, for Derek Jeter. (AP)

Hunter Pence blames himself for the Giants' Game 3 loss to the Cardinals. (CSN Bay Area)

The Cards, however, may have suffered a bigger loss when Carlos Beltran went down. (AP)

Jack Morris hopes the Nationals are watching how other teams -- teams still alive in the postseason (ahem) -- use their ace pitchers. And then plan Stephen Strasburg's future accordingly. (CSN Washington)

You mean Livan Hernandez is still playing? Apparently so. Not only that, he's available. (AP)
COLLEGE BASKETBALL
Yeah, it's not even Halloween yet, but it's time to pick a winner! In the Big East, that'll be Louisville. (AP)

In the ACC, North Carolina State. (AP)

And in the Big 12, it's (yawn) Kansas. (AP)

Others may abandon the Big East, but not Madison Square Garden. (AP)
COLLEGE FOOTBALL
Looks like No. 9 South Carolina will have to go to No. 3 Florida this weekend without Marcus Lattimore. (NBC's College Football Talk)

And maybe Kelcy Quarles, too. (AP)

But Notre Dame might have Everett Golson when it hosts BYU. (AP)

Hey, it was just a little bar fight. No need for Texas Tech to sit its starting center. (AP)

Shades of Bobby Knight! (AP)

Devon Walker, the Tulane safety who suffered a spinal fracture on Sept. 8, issues a statement thanking everyone for this support he's received. (AP)
GOLF
The turtles on the PGA Tour are forcing the fast players to deliberately slow their pace. . . to the game's detriment. (AP)

Forgotten about that Ryder Cup loss, have you? Not Davis Love III. (golfchannel.com)

Jim Furyk improved his game in 2012 in every aspect but one: He didn't win anything. (AP)
HOCKEY
Now that they've had a day to digest it, the players' enthusiasm for the owners' latest offer has dimmed a little. (CSN Chicago)

Or a lot. (NBC's Pro Hockey Talk)

Claude Giroux' complaints that Sidney Crosby was intentionally hacking his wrists during faceoffs last spring reminded Crosby of that old saying: "Hello, kettle? This is pot. You're black." (CSN Philly)
PRO BASKETBALL
A broken hand will keep Kevin Love out of the Timberwolves' lineup for six to eight weeks. (AP)

Dirk Nowitzki's ailing knee doesn't hurt Mark Cuban at all. (AP)

Turns out Steve Nash was ready to go play at home -- in Toronto -- before the Lakers came calling. (NBC's Pro Basketball Talk)

The NBA has put its preening players on the clock. At least during pregame. (AP)
PRO FOOTBALL
Scott Pioli admits he's "made mistakes" in Kansas City. Don't think he'd get much pushback on that from Chiefs Nation. (AP)

Ray Lewis might -- just might -- be back, after all. (AP)

Ed Reed says he's hurt. Ed Reed says it's affecting his play. Funny, then, that his name has never popped up on the Ravens' injury report, wouldn't you say? (NBC's Pro Football Talk)

The NFL to the Bountygate judge: Stay out of this. (AP)

Jonathan Vilma, meanwhile, hopes to return on Sunday. (AP)

The Titans are circling Oct. 28 as the date Jake Locker comes back. (AP)

Sometimes, RGIII amazes even himself. (CSN Washington)

Let's hope Paul Ryan is more familiar with economic issues and world affairs than he is with Browns quarterbacks. (Pro Football Talk)

Report: Benintendi ‘front man’ in Chris Sale trade talks

Report: Benintendi ‘front man’ in Chris Sale trade talks

Any Red Sox trade discussions the past few weeks have pretty much begun and ended with their top two prospects, second baseman Yoan Moncada and outfielder Andrew Benintendi.

As the Red Sox continue their search for starting pitching, those two names keep coming up. So, naturally, comes a report Tuesday that puts Benintendi at the center of a deal for Chicago White Sox left-handed ace Chris Sale. 

Andrew Benintendi “could be the front man in a multi-player Chris Sale trade if talks progress,” according to Chicago-based mlb.com columnist Phil Rogers. 

With top pitching prospect Anderson Espinoza dealt to the Padres in trade for Drew Pomeranz, the question is, would Red Sox president of baseball operations Dave Dombrowski further deplete his prospect reserve by dealing Benintendi, the 2015 first-round pick out of Arkansas who is hitting .276 with six homers and 36 RBI in 58 games at Double-A Portland? 

The Red Sox' performance is the next six games until the Aug. 1 trade deadline may hold the answer. 

 

Tuesday’s Red Sox-Tigers lineups: Wright tries to right Sox

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Tuesday’s Red Sox-Tigers lineups: Wright tries to right Sox

The Red Sox send knuckleballer Steven Wright (12-5, American League-leading 2.57 ERA) to the mound tonight in the middle game of their three-game series with the Detroit Tigers. 

Wright has won his past four starts. The Tigers counter with right-hander Mike Pelfrey (3-9, 4.78). The Red Sox field their standard lineup, with Ryan Hanigan catching Wright, as they try to rebound from a 4-2 loss on Monday night. 

The lineups:

TIGERS
Ian Kinsler 2B
Jose Iglesias SS
Miguel Cabrera 1B
Victor Martinez DH
Nick Castellanos 3B
Justin Upton LF
Mike Aviles RF
Jarrod Saltalamacchia C
Tyler Collins CF

Mike Pelfrey

RED SOX
Mookie Betts RF
Dustin Pedroia 2B
Xander Bogaerts SS
David Ortiz DH
Hanley Ramirez 1B
Jackie Bradley Jr. CF
Travis Shaw 3B
Ryan Hanigan C
Brock Holt LF

Steven Wright RHP

McAdam: Red Sox should pass on this Sale

McAdam: Red Sox should pass on this Sale

BOSTON -- I'm not sure what the Red Sox would have to give up for Chicago White Sox starter Chris Sale.

For that matter, I can't say definitively that the two clubs have actually discussed a trade for Chris Sale, though it's logical to assume they have, even in a cursory way.

The White Sox, mired toward the bottom of the A.L. Central and with just one playoff appearance in the last 11 seasons, are said to be "open'' to listening for offers on Sale. That's both their right and their duty.

As for the Red Sox, given that they're a big-market club with plenty of resources and an expectation from a loyal fan base to compete for a championship every season, they're similarly smart to inquire.

Who knows? Maybe the White Sox have had their fill of Sale and ,in a fit of pique, might be desperate enough to take less than full value to rid themselves of a pitcher who's developed into quite the clubhouse lawyer of late.

But my guess is that the White Sox are demanding a lot for Sale. That makes sense, since, beyond his raging sense of entitlement, Sale remains one of the handful of best starters in the game and is under club control for another three seasons after this one.

Whatever the asking price is, however, it's almost certainly too much.

Sure, the addition of Sale might, on paper, make the Red Sox the favorites to win the American League pennant.

Again, on paper. Ask the New York Mets, who owned the best starting rotation in the game when the season began and now sit, uncomfortably, in third place in their own division.

So much for the best-laid plans.

But the focus here is on the cost, however unknown, to obtain Sale.

If obtaining Drew Pomeranz cost the Red Sox Anderson Espinoza, how much more would Sale cost?

Let's assume that the Red Sox consider Yoan Moncada essentially untouchable. That would mean Boston would have to essentially clean out the rest of its prospect inventory. Think: a package like Andrew Benintendi, Rafael Devers and Michael Kopech, and perhaps more.

Or maybe the White Sox want more established young talent, and have their eyes on Mookie Betts and more.

Argue, if you wish, that pitching is more important than offense, but giving up a leadoff man who's shown indications he could become a five-tool superstar? No, thanks.

There's also the matter of need. Unlike at the beginning of the season, the Red Sox can now lay claim to having a rotation in which every one of the five starters gives them a solid chance to win.

Yes, David Price has underperformed in a big way. But that's likely the result of adjusting to Boston and new surroundings. What are the odds that, at 30, Price has almost overnight permanently devolved into a mediocre starter after finishing second in the Cy Young Award voting just last fall?

Steven Wright has emerged as a consistent starter who's under control for the forseeable future. Rick Porcello, though not flashy, is pitching like the Red Sox envisioned he would when they dealt for him a season-and-a-half ago. Eduardo Rodriguez has overcome injury and delivery issues to fufull the promise he showed as a rookie. And Pomeranz could be an afforable middle-of-the-rotation for years to come.

Is Sale better than each one of them right now? Of course, Price included.

But is the Red Sox rotation so troubled that it must upgrade now or else? No. Is their an obvious weak link begging to be immediately replaced? No.

And this is not Chris Sale, free agent. This is Chris Sale, incredibly expensive trade piece.

What if they stripmined their minor-league system for Sale, and didn't win? Then what? What if they tore up their core of foundational players for Sale, only to find him incapable of surviving Boston?

As I confessed earlier, I don't know what the White Sox would want for Sale.

What I do know is that it would, by definition, almost certainly be too much.