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Archive for April, 2010

Campbell’s return a game-time decision

Posted by GameSetMatch on 22nd April 2010

Chicago Blackhawks defenseman Brian Campbell is listed as a game-time decision Thursday for Game 4 against the Nashville Predators.

It is possibly paving the way for Campbell’s first action since March 14, when he was hit by Capitals forward Alex Ovechkin.

Campbell suffered a fractured clavicle and rib in that collision, which cost the Washington Capitals’ star a two-game suspension, handed down by the league.

The Predators own a 2-1 series lead, and Blackhawks coach Joel Quenneville was asked whether trailing in the series dictates Campbell’s return.

“It’s a good question,” he said Thursday morning. “It’s tough to measure something like that.

“When you’re ready to play, you’re ready to play. When you talk to players that have been out for a while, they know their body, they know when they’re ready. We’ll see.”

Click here to read the full article – By Jesse Rogers of ESPNChicago.com



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White Sox Offense Continues To Sputter

Posted by jmw24 on 21st April 2010

Coming into the season, most believed that the White Sox pitching staff was as good as any in baseball, but there was a chance that their offense could not score enough runs. So far, this seems to be the case, as the White Sox offense is certainly struggling. Thus far, the White Sox rank 23 in the MLB in runs scored, and 28 in batting average, hitting just .223. The lone offensive bright spot thus far has been the enigmatic Andruw Jones, who conveiantly only seems to hit when his contract is set to expire. The biggest worry for the Ozzie Guillen and Kenny Williams has to be outfielder Carlos Quentin. Queintin struggled through an injury plauged season last year after having a fantastic year in 2008. If Quentin is unable to regain his 2008 form, the White Sox will need to go out and find a big bat in the outfield to remain competitive in the NL Central.

Though the White Sox were expecting to have one of the top rotations in baseball this season, their starters have been inconsistent to start. Mark Buehrle and John Danks have both been lights out, but after that, the starting pitching has not been good. Gavin Floyd, who had seemed to put it all together over the past two seasons has been awful in two of his first three starts. Jake Peavy and Freddie Garcia also been plauged by inconsistency early on. If the White Sox intend to play meaningful games into the late summer and fall, their starting pitching has to carry them. GM Kenny Williams has invested alot of money into the rotation and the starters must go deep into games and take pressure off of the offense if they White Sox are going to succeed.

by Josh Weiner at the Sports Fan Blog Network

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Noah leaves Cleveland media hanging

Posted by GameSetMatch on 19th April 2010

A day after making derogatory comments about the city of Cleveland, Chicago Bulls center Joakim Noah did not address reporters following a morning shootaround in advance of Monday night’s Game 2 against the Cavaliers.

Noah told reporters on Sunday that he was not enjoying his time in Cleveland. When asked by a reporter whether the boos he endured during a 96-83 Game 1 loss on Saturday bothered him, he responded: “What? That Cleveland sucks?”

On Monday, a large horde of reporters waited for Noah off to the side of the Quicken Loans Arena court. After initially appearing to walk toward the group, Noah was escorted to the visitor’s tunnel by a Bulls spokesperson. It was believed that he had to tape a segment for the TNT telecast and would be back out in 10 minutes.

But soon after another Bulls spokesperson came out and said Noah would not be address the media. Several Cleveland media members expressed displeasure.

Click here to read the full article – By Nick Friedell of ESPNChicago.com



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Niemi makes 23 saves for shutout as Blackhawks recover from loss

Posted by GameSetMatch on 19th April 2010

Antti Niemi’s mind was clear and his game was sharp. It was just what the Chicago Blackhawks needed to even up their first-round series with the Nashville Predators

“I just wanted to get ready like every other game. I didn’t want to think about too much,” Niemi said after making 23 saves in his second career playoff game to help the Blackhawks beat the Predators 2-0 on Sunday night.

Niemi, a rookie, didn’t dwell on his first playoff game two nights earlier when he gave up two goals, one on a bouncing puck in a 4-1 loss in the series opener. That loss put Sunday night’s game into the must-win category for the Blackhawks with Games 3 and 4 in the Western Conference series slated for Nashville on Tuesday and Thursday.

“You don’t want to focus on, ‘This is a big game.’ You want it to be like every other,” Niemi said.

Click here to read the full article – By Associated Press of ESPN.com



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Bulls keep up the fight

Posted by GameSetMatch on 14th April 2010

After six months and 81 games, this roller coaster of a season for the Bulls comes down to the regular- season finale tonight in Charlotte.

A win will send them to the playoffs for the second consecutive year and the fifth time in six years. A loss could send them into the offseason.

The Bulls set up the drama with an impressive finish in a 101-93 victory Tuesday over the Boston Celtics at the United Center.

Derrick Rose led the way with a career-high 39 points on 15-for-22 shooting, and Kirk Hinrich added a season-high 30 points on 11-for-20 shooting, including 4-for-7 from three-point range.

”Derrick just kept attacking, and Kirk hit some big shots down the stretch,” coach Vinny Del Negro said. ”[Hinrich] stepped up big for us, and our energy was fantastic. Everyone contributed.”

Click here to read the full article – By JOHN JACKSON of Chicago Sun-Times



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Buehrle’s play in fifth inning leaves everyone in awe

Posted by GameSetMatch on 6th April 2010

If you happened to be visiting the bathroom at the most inopportune time Monday or if you were bent over searching for a contact lens or if for some deeply held yet tragically misguided reason you have sworn off TV sports, let me tell you about Mark Buehrle’s fielding play.

I’m not sure I’ll do it justice. I’m not sure replays do it justice.

This was the fifth inning of the White Sox’ 6-0 Opening Day victory over Cleveland, and their pitcher was rolling along, smooth as fresh pavement. Indians catcher Lou Marson hit a hard grounder back at Buehrle, who instinctively made like Blackhawks goalie Antti Niemi and kicked at the ball with his left leg. Big save.

The ball caromed toward the first-base line, and Buehrle gave chase. It looked futile, but somebody forgot to tell the Sox ace this. When he arrived at the intersection of Forget It and Dude, You Have No Chance, Buehrle scooped up the ball with his glove and, without looking, flipped it in one motion between his legs to first baseman Paul Konerko, who caught it barehanded.

Click here to read the full article – By RICK MORRISSEY of Chicago Sun-Times



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Below are links to memorabilia available for Mark Buerhle.

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Cubs concerns? Sure, but perspective needed, too

Posted by GameSetMatch on 6th April 2010

One thing is true about Opening Day in baseball: It’s a lot easier to jump to conclusions about a team than it is to draw them after one game.

But such is the nature of Opening Day.

If the Cubs had lost 16-5 in the middle of July instead of Monday, not a lot would have been said.

But because it was Opening Day, with all of Chicago media at Turner Field and fans starving for games that count, the result drew swift and heated reaction.

On the Daily Herald’s baseball blog, Chicago’s Inside Pitch, suggestions included:

• Offering pitchers Carlos Zambrano and Carlos Marmol in trades.

• Discussing third baseman Aramis Ramirez’ opt-out clause in his contract.

• Talking about the possibility of trading first baseman Derrek Lee if the Cubs are out of the race.

Click here to read the full article – By Bruce Miles of Daily Herald



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