It’s been a trying season for both the Los Angeles Angels and Arizona Diamondbacks, and on Tuesday, two pitchers who have had seasons to forget will try to get things heading in the right direction.
Former World Series MVP Madison Bumgarner has been a shell of himself this season for the Diamondbacks, allowing 3.76 home runs per nine innings, the most of any player who has thrown at least 20 innings this season, and is 0-4 with a 7.52 ERA.
Somehow Julio Teheran comes in with a worse ERA at 8.23 and has allowed 2.3 home runs per nine innings, while both starters have 17 strikeouts and 11 walks through six starts. The two bullpens enter with ERAs between 4.75 and 5.00.
The Angels have played a league-high 62.2 percent of their games Over the total this season, and despite the Diamondbacks’ recent struggles at the plate — four runs or fewer in 19 of their past 24 games — this sets up as a slugfest given the way each team’s pitchers have performed in 2020.
The Play: Angels-Diamondbacks total. Over 9.5 runs.
‘Wide Right’ and more: Six missed kicks that shaped Miami-FSU
Florida State travels to No. 12 Miami on Saturday in ABC’s college football “Game of the Week.”
Kickoff is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. at Hard Rock Stadium in Miami Gardens, Fla. For those who know the history of the Hurricanes-Seminoles rivalries, it’s those kickers who might take center stage in the final moments.
There’s the run of monumental showdowns in the 1990s and early 2000s with more NFL talent on the field than anybody could possibly imagine. And, of course, missed game-winning kicks.
Wide Right. Wide Left. And, of course, the dramatic ending to the 2016 game.
Here are six kicks that shaped the Miami-FSU rivarly:
Wide Right I: No. 2 Miami 17, No. 1 Florida State 16 (1991)
What happened: Florida State (10-0) and Miami (8-0) both came in undefeated, but Gerry Thomas missed a 34-yard field goal with 29 seconds remaining that would’ve given the Seminoles the win.
Aftermath: Florida State lost to No. 5 Florida the following week but beat No. 9 Texas A&M in the Cotton Bowl. Miami won its fourth national championship after beating No. 1 Nebraska in the Orange Bowl.
Wide Right II: No. 2 Miami 19, No. 3 Florida State 16 (1992)
What happened: The Seminoles (4-0) and Hurricanes (3-0) hooked up earlier in the season the following year, but it ended with the same result. Dan Mowrey missed a 39-yard field goal in the final minute.
Aftermath: Miami’s bid for back-to-back national championships ended with a Sugar Bowl loss to No. 2 Alabama. Florida State finished 11-1 and beat No. 11 Nebraska in the Orange Bowl.
Wide Right III: No. 7 Miami 27, No. 1 Florida State 24 (2000)
What happened: Florida State (5-0) and Miami (3-1) met on the same intense stage, and this time Matt Munyon missed a 49-yard attempt as time expired.
Aftermath: Both teams finished with one loss, but the Seminoles were chosen to play No. 1 Oklahoma in the Orange Bowl for the BCS national championship instead of the Hurricanes. The Sooners won, 13-2. Miami beat No. 7 Florida in the Sugar Bowl and finished No. 2 in the AP Poll.
Wide Left: No. 1 Miami 28, No. 9 Florida State 27 (2002)
What happened: The Seminoles (5-1) threatened to upset the defending national champion Hurricanes (5-0), but Miami rallied behind two fourth-quarter touchdowns. Xavier Beitia missed a 43-yarder as time expired.
Aftermath: Miami’s bid for back-to-back BCS titles ended with a double-overtime loss to Ohio State in the Fiesta Bowl. Florida State finished 9-5 and lost the Sugar Bowl to No. 4 Georgia.
Wide Right IV: No. 10 Miami 16, No. 9 Florida State 14 (2003)
What happened: The teams met in the Orange Bowl. It wasn’t a last-second field goal this time, but Beitia missed a 39-yarder that would’ve given Florida State the lead with 5:30 remaining.
Aftermath: Miami finished 11-2 and Florida State finished 10-3. The teams met in the ACC opener the following season, which happens to be the last matchup in which both teams were ranked in the top 10.
Missed extra point: No. 23 Florida State 20, No. 10 Miami 19 (2016)
What happened: No. 10 Miami (4-0) had a chance to knock off No. 23 Florida State (3-2), and Brad Kaaya cut the Seminoles led to 20-19 with 1:38 remaining. DeMarcus Walker blocked the ensuing extra point, however, sealing a seventh straight win in the rivalry for the Seminoles.
Aftermath: Florida State finished 10-3 and beat Michigan in the Orange Bowl. Miami finished 9-4 in Mark Richt’s first season and beat West Virginia in the Russell Athletic Bowl.
Jordan Montgomery’s Yankees role up in the air for first round
Gerrit Cole and Masahiro Tanaka will start the first two games of the best-of-three postseason series that will be played Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday.
Aaron Boone has J.A. Happ and Deivi Garcia to consider starting for a deciding third game.
So, where does that leave Jordan Montgomery for the first round?
Boone said Wednesday that if the Yankees advance to the ALDS, Montgomery would be in the starting rotation. But the manager didn’t say whether Montgomery would or wouldn’t be in the Yankees’ bullpen for the first round.
“That’s possible. Again, we will discuss that. Monty goes [Thursday] and we will discuss what we want to do on the weekend,” Boone said before the Yankees were routed by the Blue Jays, 14-1, at Sahlen Field in Buffalo. “There could be that role for him. He is obviously going to start at some point, but everything is on the table.”
Montgomery was on the 2017 postseason roster and available to relieve, but he didn’t get into games against the Indians and Astros. Of his 73 big league games, Montgomery has started 69 of them.
Montgomery’s season has been up and down. He takes a 2-2 record and a hefty 5.12 ERA into Thursday night’s game, which will be his 10th start of the season.
Montgomery isn’t the type to cause a stir, and he didn’t Wednesday when asked about the possibility of working out of the bullpen.
“I am here to help the team, so whatever I got to do to get outs for them, I will do,” Montgomery said of possibly working in relief. “I definitely probably throw harder out of the pen, so I think I would be pretty good out of the pen, but I can get outs as a starter also. Whatever they want me to do, really not up to me.’’
The Yankees are very protective of their relievers. Chad Green was the only one to work three days in a row this year. And without built-in off days, the bullpens are going to get plenty of postseason work.
“If we go on a deep run in the playoffs, guys are going to have to pitch multiple days,” Boone said. “But it is also imperative that whoever ends up holding the [World Series] trophy at the end, my vision of it is that you are going to have to lean on 10, 12, 13 pitchers more so than ever before. You are not going to be riding two starters twice a series and four main, high-impact relievers. You are going to have to, in given games, lean on the 12th, 13th man on a pitching staff to get important outs for you. I think that will be imperative for the team that wins it all.”
Montgomery could be useful in the pen during the first round because of his ability to get a strikeout (39 in 38 ²/₃ innings), but that could depend how many pitchers Boone carries.
As for this season, which followed a 2019 during which Montgomery pitched in two games (four innings) late in the year after coming off Tommy John surgery, the 27-year-old lefty pointed out what he could have done better at and what he was satisfied with.
“Definitely the ERA is too high for my liking,” Montgomery said of his 5.12 ERA. “But soft contact, strikeout percentage, walk percentage, I am pretty happy about how I am getting outs. A couple of games the pitch count has gotten high, but I have induced a lot of soft contact and had guys on their toes a little bit. Keep trying to get better.”
Lakers take their LeBron James frustration straight to the league
The Lakers lead the Western Conference Finals and are the title favorites. Still, they feel they’re at a disadvantage.
Following a Game 3 loss to the Nuggets, the Lakers formally presented a case to the NBA that LeBron James is not getting as many foul calls as they believe should have been assessed, according to the L.A. Times. In Game 3, James shot just two free throws — due to a Jamal Murray flagrant foul — giving him a total of 10 in the series. This season, James averaged a career-low 5.7 free-throw attempts per game. During the first two rounds of the playoffs, the four-time MVP averaged 7.6 free throws per game.
“We’re dealing with the fouls through the proper channels with the league,” Lakers coach Frank Vogel said Wednesday. “I think he’s gone to the basket very aggressively, and I’ll just leave it at that.”
The Lakers’ issues with the officiating has also resulted in Dwight Howard picking up technical fouls the past two games, and assistant coach Phil Handy being assessed a technical foul in Game 2.
“Yeah, I mean, I think we’re exhibiting decent composure,” Vogel said. “I know we got the tech in Game 2, but yeah, we’re playing through it.”
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