Thursday, April 19, 2018
Sports

Tigers' Valverde prepared to adapt

DETROIT — Jose Valverde threw a few pitches during Detroit's workout then returned to the dugout as upbeat as usual.

Valverde's role for the World Series still isn't clear, but the right-hander doesn't seem to mind.

"I don't care. All I want is to be a champion," he said. "If I had to start, I'd do it."

Valverde has been Detroit's closer for three years and didn't blow a save through all of 2011, but this postseason has been ugly. He lost Game 4 of the AL Division Series against Oakland and gave up four runs in the AL Championship Series opener against the Yankees. The Tigers went on to win that game and sweep the series, but Valverde hasn't been used since.

The World Series begins Wednesday at either St. Louis or San Francisco. Valverde sounds confident he has made the necessary mechanical adjustments, and so does manager Jim Leyland.

"I think everybody's making too big of a deal of the Valverde situation. Valverde's going to be ready. There's nothing wrong with Valverde. He's going to be fine," Leyland said. "I got a kick out of it. Nobody wanted me to pitch him, but everybody asks me every day if he's going to be the closer. I don't know what they expect, but I'm going to just see what happens."

Leyland went with other options after Valverde's meltdown against the Yankees. LHP Phil Coke got the save in Games 2 and 3.

BELTRAN OKAY: Cardinals RF Carlos Beltran, who returned to the lineup for Friday's Game 5 of the NL Championship Series after sitting out Game 4 with a strained left knee, spent part of Saturday's day off in the training room but should play today.

"He said it's pretty good," manager Mike Matheny said. "He is the one in here that is getting treatment. So we listen to how he feels and then what the trainers see. But right now, it seems to be everything is good."

Beltran said the knee reacted well after Game 5.

LINCECUM IN PEN: Giants Game 4 starter Tim Lincecum should be available in relief for Game 6 tonight. The two-time Cy Young Award winner will be on two days' rest after throwing 91 pitches in 42/3 innings in Thursday's 8-3 loss.

DELMON TO OF: ALCS MVP Delmon Young will play in the outfield in the National League ballpark during the World Series, Leyland said. The former Ray is considered a poor defensive player and was Detroit's DH during the AL playoffs, but Leyland wants to keep his bat in the lineup. Andy Dirks, who has started in leftfield for all nine postseason games, could share time in right with Avisail Garcia and Quintin Berry.

Comments
Lightning stands up to Devils, pushes its way to 3-1 series lead

Lightning stands up to Devils, pushes its way to 3-1 series lead

NEWARK, N.J. — Bachman-Turner Overdrive's Taking Care of Business shook the walls of the Lightning locker room not long after it dispatched the Devils in Wednesday's Game 4 of their first-round playoff series.The 3-1 win was sparked by Nikita K...
Updated: 7 hours ago

High school scoreboard for April 18

Wednesday’s scoreboardSoftballAdmiral Farragut 2, Boca Ciega 1Springstead 10, Nature Coast 4
Updated: 7 hours ago

Thursday’s sports on TV/radio

TODAYBaseballOrioles at Tigers1 p.m.MLBBlue Jays at Yankees6:30 p.m.MLB; 1040-AMMarlins at Brewers8 p.m.FSFBoxingFeatherweights: Roach vs. Cruz9:30 p.m.ESPN2College baseballFlorida at Kentucky7 p.m.SECVanderbilt at Missouri8 p.m.ESPNUGolfPGA Europe: ...
Updated: 7 hours ago
Roger Mooney’s takeaways from Lightning-Devils Game 4

Roger Mooney’s takeaways from Lightning-Devils Game 4

I guess the lesson here is never believe a hockey player when he says what happens in a scrum at the end of a playoff game doesn't carry over into the next game. It sure looks like the Lightning and Devils won't be vacationing together this summer.Th...
Updated: 7 hours ago
Lightning-Devils: How Tampa Bay worked its way to a 3-1 series lead

Lightning-Devils: How Tampa Bay worked its way to a 3-1 series lead

Times columnist Tom Jones gives his thoughts while watching the broadcast of Game 4 of the series between the Lightning and Devils:Hard work beats everythingWe watch the Lightning all season long and marvel at its skill. Nikita Kucherov, Steven ...
Updated: 7 hours ago
Restraint? Ha. Lightning-Devils mix it up in early going of Game 4

Restraint? Ha. Lightning-Devils mix it up in early going of Game 4

NEWARK, N.J. — Both sides were in agreement Tuesday that the shenanigans during the final minute of Monday's Game 3 would not carry over to Game 4."I think the emotion of a game in a series carries over, (but) what happened at end I don't think...
Updated: 9 hours ago
Rays journal: Whew. Alex Colome gets the job done

Rays journal: Whew. Alex Colome gets the job done

ST. PETERSBURG — In the end, Alex Colome got the three outs to save the game, the day and the stomach linings of his bosses from further deterioration, so in theory that should be what mattered most Wednesday.And the fact that he was smiling in...
Updated: 10 hours ago
Marc Topkin’s takeaways from Rays’ 4-2 Wednesday win

Marc Topkin’s takeaways from Rays’ 4-2 Wednesday win

Alex Colome's ninth-inning dramatics took the focus, but the work of newly corn-rowed RHP Chaz Roe in the seventh (three Ks) and LHP Jose Alvarado (one K, two infield outs) was textbook, and showed how the bullpen can work.RELATED: Whew. Alex Colome ...
Updated: 10 hours ago
Anonymous Rays rally to beat Rangers 4-2, win series

Anonymous Rays rally to beat Rangers 4-2, win series

ST. PETERSBURG — Even before they lost several of the hitters they were relying most on to injuries, the Rays did not exactly have a lineup built on intimidation.Their own owner said opening day that he expected them to rank among the least pro...
Updated: 11 hours ago
Report: Florida Gators’ Cece Jefferson out four months after shoulder surgery

Report: Florida Gators’ Cece Jefferson out four months after shoulder surgery

Florida Gators defensive lineman Cece Jefferson will be out four months after having surgery on his right shoulder earlier this week, according to a report Wednesday evening from the Gainesville Sun.Jefferson, a 6-foot-1, 242-pound senior, injured th...
Updated: 11 hours ago