Mark Townsend

  • David Ortiz starts emotional weekend with dramatic home run

    Mark Townsend at Big League Stew 4 hrs ago

    Welcome to The Walk Off, the nightly MLB recap from Big League Stew. Here we’ll look at the top performers of the night, show you a must-see highlight and rundown the scoreboard. First, we start with a game you need to know about.

    The weekend in Boston belongs to David Ortiz, and the man affectionately known as “Big Papi” embraced that like only he can with a dramatic go-ahead home run in the Red Sox 5-3 win against the Blue Jays.

    Honored before for the game for his off-the-field contributions to the community, Ortiz shined on it by wrapping a Brett Cecil pitch just inside Pesky Pole in right field. The home run broke a tie 3-3, and drove Fenway Park into a frenzy as they celebrated the latest awesome moment in a career filled with too many awesome moments to count.

    Ortiz finished the game with two hits, raising his season average to .316. The home run was his 38th, and his three total RBIs raised his total to 127. What a season for Big Papi and what a thrilling night for Red Sox fans.

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  • Angel Pagan body slams fan on the field who approached him with flowers

    Mark Townsend at Big League Stew 5 hrs ago

    A truly bizarre scene played out during Friday’s Dodgers-Giants game in San Francisco as a pair of fans carrying flowers ran on the field. It appeared the fans wanted to give the flowers to several Giants players, most notably Angel Pagan and Buster Posey. However, neither was having it and instead helped security by bringing the fans down.

    The scene played out with Los Angeles batting in the fourth inning. The two fans got by security and hit the field, coming close to several players. One got too close to Pagan, who immediately grabbed him and slammed him to the ground with a WWE style suplex.

    My boy Pagan body slamming a fan lmao #sfgiants pic.twitter.com/l3k6naqGh8

    — X (@XavierEsWhy) October 1, 2016

    After showing his perfect tackling form, Pagan then held the fan down until security could remove him and send him off to jail with his pal.

    — Carmen Kiew (@carmenkiew) October 1, 2016

     

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  • Miami Hurricanes football team to honor Jose Fernandez

    Mark Townsend at Big League Stew 6 hrs ago

    The tragic death of Miami Marlins pitcher Jose Fernandez has shaken the entire sports world to its core. That’s especially true in Miami, where Fernandez not only displayed his remarkable talents, but lit up the city with his child-like enthusiasm and infectious smile.

    At only 24 years old, Fernandez leaves behind a legacy that touched and inspired so many people. That’s why the Miami community has banded together, led by other sports teams, to honor his memory.

    The Miami Dolphins were the first, holding a moment of silence just hours after Fernandez’s tragic boating accident and moments before their home opener last Sunday. Now, the Miiami Hurricanes football has joined, announcing they will be wearing a special helmet sticker that reads “JF 16” for Fernandez during Saturday’s game against the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets.

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  • Joe Maddon reacts to Cubs' players' criticism of 'spring training' lineups

    Mark Townsend at Big League Stew 8 hrs ago

    Chicago Cubs manager Joe Maddon is known for having his finger on the pulse of his players. That hasn’t been completely true this week though. In fact, Maddon has actually drawn criticism from within for resting regulars and using “spring training” like lineups after the team clinched the NL Central division and wrapped up home-field advantage throughout the NL playoffs.

    In particular, ace Jake Arrieta and catcher Miguel Montero weren’t thrilled with the lineups and some in-game changes that directly impacted them during Wednesday’s 8-4 loss in Pittsburgh. A game in which Arrieta struggled mightily, we should point out.

    “It felt like a spring training game from the get-go,” Arrieta said following the game. “I wasn’t crisp. I didn’t have much working.”

    “There’s really not a whole lot of credence to all of that as far as I’m concerned because we’ve been playing well.”

  • Five reasons the Red Sox could win the World Series

    Mark Townsend at Big League Stew 14 hrs ago

    Stop us if you’ve heard this before: The Red Sox look like serious World Series contenders just a year after finishing in last place in the AL East. Actually, wait, don’t stop us. You have heard that before. It just happened in 2013.

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    These Red Sox are a little different, though. Sure, David Ortiz is still there bashing homers, but he’s also playing in the final games of his career. Around him is a talented cast new and old — from free-agent signing David Price to second base stalwart Dustin Pedroia, and loads of young talent everywhere. Especially in the outfield where Mookie Betts has staken claim to being the next face of the franchise. And Rick Porcello, if you haven’t been paying attention, transformed into one of the AL’s best pitchers this season.

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  • Mets gain separation in wild-card race as Giants and Cardinals fall

    Mark Townsend at Big League Stew 2 days ago

    Welcome to The Walk Off, the nightly MLB recap from Big League Stew. Here we’ll look at the top performers of the night, show you a must-see highlight and rundown the scoreboard. First, we start with a game you need to know about.

    The circumstances the Mets walked into this week were not easy. As the city of Miami and the Marlins organization mourned the tragic death of Jose Fernandez, the Mets had to balance their own emotions with taking care of business.

    They managed to do so effectively. After losing the opener, New York bounced back to win the series, concluding with a 5-2 win on Wednesday night.

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    That breathing room would grow even more as the night wore on.

    The Mets are essentially 2 1/2 games up on the Giants, since they hold the tiebreaker (season series) for home-field advantage.

    The Giants remain in the second spot with a one-game lead over St. Louis.

  • John Jaso completes first-ever PNC Park cycle in dramatic fashion

    Mark Townsend at Big League Stew 2 days ago

    With Jake Arrieta pitching for the Cubs on Wednesday night, many were probably anticipating a quiet night from the Pirates offense. Instead, Pittsburgh erupted for seven runs on 10 hits in five innings against the reigning National League Cy Young award winner, and the night culminated with John Jaso hitting for the first cycle in the history of PNC Park.

    Jaso did most of his damage against Arrieta. He singled in the second inning for his first hit. He connected for a three-run homer in the fourth inning, which broke a tie. In the fifth inning, Jaso added an RBI double. Then, with all eyes focusing on him in the seventh, he delivered an RBI triple against Cubs’ reliever Pedro Strop.

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    Talk about drama. The cycle-clinching triple was oozing with it.

    Ironically, the lone no-hitter belongs to Jake Arrieta, who pitched one in Cincinnati in April.

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  • David Ortiz fools fans as undercover Lyft driver in Boston

    Mark Townsend at Big League Stew 2 days ago

    Retiring Boston Red Sox star David Ortiz is not only among baseball’s most recognizable players, he’s one of the most recognizable superstar athletes in the world. Between his infectious personality, bright smile and remarkable talents, Ortiz has always been and will certainly remain a man who’s in demand, because he commands attention and earns respect everywhere he goes.

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    Despite that visibility though, Ortiz was able to fool some fellow Bostonians recently when he donned an afro wig and dubbed himself “Donny” while serving as undercover Lyft driver. An entertaining video featuring Ortiz interacting with and then stunning several casual and even diehard Red Sox fans was released on Wednesday, and it’s definitely a must-see.

    Here’s one particularly entertaining exchange that went right over the passenger’s head:

    Ortiz: You ever been to Fenway Park?

    Passenger: “Yeah, I’m going to the Red Sox game tonight.”

    Ortiz: “Me too.”

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  • Pitcher who allowed Tim Tebow's home run tweets funny response

    Mark Townsend at Big League Stew 2 days ago

    St. Louis Cardinals prospect John Kilichowski will forever be the answer to a trivia question no one thought would exist even two months ago. During Wednesday’s instructional league game against the New York Mets, he was the pitcher who allowed a home run to Tim Tebow in Tebow’s first ever professional at-bat.

    . BOOM! @TimTebow hits a homer during instructional league game! pic.twitter.com/8h9JCzr7Br

    — Katie Johnson (@Katie_Johnson_) September 28, 2016

    On the first pitch he saw, Tebow took a high-and-outside fastball from Kilichowski and basically tomahawked it over the fence in left-center field. It was an impressive feat of strength that left Tebow undeniably giddy as he sprinted around the bases and talked to the media after the game.

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  • Dodgers overcome injuries to clinch fourth straight NL West title

    Mark Townsend at Big League Stew 5 days ago

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    Let there be no doubt about it, the Los Angeles Dodgers are the best in the National League West.

    Despite a historic series of injuries that would have demoralized and defeated most teams, the Dodgers survived and even persevered on their way to a fourth straight NL West crown. Now they’ll seek to be more than regular season wonders as they chase the franchise’s first World Series championship since 1988.

    The Dodgers fittingly clinched in Vin Scully’s final home broadcast, which is as good a tribute as any the legendary broadcaster has received. It was also the perfect game for Scully to call, as it featured a dramatic finish.

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    The Colorado Rockies got out to an early lead in the third, picking up two runs off Dodgers’ starter Brandon McCarthy. The Dodgers would answer back in the bottom of the frame, getting a run back on a Yasiel Puig sacrifice fly.

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