David Willis: Under the Lights: Derry's Sanford signs with Predators

·2 min read

Aug. 7—SANFORD TO PREDATORS

Derry's Zach Sanford has signed a one-year contact with the National Hockey League's Nashville Predators, worth $850,000.

This will be the fifth different NHL stop for the former Pinkerton Academy star. Sanford previously played for the Washington Capitals (2016-17), St. Louis Blues (2017-21), Ottawa Senators (2021-22) and Winnipeg Jets (2022). He beat the Bruins in the 2019 Stanley Cup Final.

In 289 career NHL games, Sanford has 47 goals and 48 assists. He tallied nine goals and eight assists in 80 games last season.

WMUR LOCAL SPORTS SWITCH

Congrats go out to a pair of local residents and longtime New Hampshire WMUR Channel 9 News personalities.

After 18 years as sports director, Windham native and Pinkerton graduate Jamie Staton is now anchoring the weekday 4 p.m. and 6 p.m. news. A beloved figure on the local high school and college sports scene, Staton was inducted into the Pinkerton Hall of Fame in 2004 and the NHIAA Hall of Fame in 2018.

Replacing Staton as sports director is Salem (N.H.) native Mike Cronin. Since joining WMUR in 2014, Cronin — who still lives in Salem — has served as a reporter, weekend anchor and fill-in sports anchor.

K CRAZY

Sure, strikeouts have become more acceptable in professional baseball. But last week, the New Hampshire Fisher Cats made the Richmond Flying Squirrels look silly.

On Thursday, the Fisher Cats earned the final 13(!!!) outs of the game via the strikeout. So, the defense didn't register a single out over the final 4 1/3 innings of the game. The Toronto Blue Jays' double-A affiliate ended up striking out 19 in the game, led by Braden Scott — who struck out all six batters he faced — and won on a walkoff single by John Aiello.

MORE ON Ks

Here's another fun strikeout fact. Outfielder Joey Gallo, who the Yankees traded to the Dodgers last week, struck out 991 times in his first 708 career MLB games. That's 1.4 strikeouts a game.

In their careers, baseball Hall of Famer Tony Gwynn and late Red Sox first baseman Bill Buckner struck out 887 times combined in 4,957 career games. Neither ever struck out more than 40 times in a single season.

ONE FINAL THOUGHT

As Michael Muldoon used to say, "If you can bring a smile to someone's face today, just do it!"

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