Chicago Sun-Times Latest news from the Chicago Sun-Times Online en-us (Editor) Newspapers Chicago Sun-Times 84 34 30 Copyright 2014 <![CDATA[ Giants surge past Royals to even World Series ]]> Lead story image

SAN FRANCISCO — Ned Yost sounded like anything but a manager whose team just blew a three-run lead with a chance to move within a game of a World Series title. “Oh, man, somewhere inside of me, secretly I had hoped that it would go seven games for the excitement and the thrill of it,” said the Kansas City Royals’ manager after his vaunted pitching staff got pounded in the middle innings by the San Francisco Giants in a come-from-behind, 11-4 victory at AT&T Park. The Giants’ victory, which knotted the series at two games apiece, assured a return to … ]]> Sun, 26 Oct 2014 00:44:51 -0600 <![CDATA[ Twins to hire Paul Molitor ]]>

The Minnesota Twins say they will hire Paul Molitor as manager after four straight seasons of 92 or more losses. ]]> Mon, 03 Nov 2014 12:48:00 -0600 <![CDATA[ Oscar Taveras, Cardinals’ 22-year-old OF, dies in car accident ]]> Lead story image

Oscar Taveras has died in a car accident in the Dominican Republic, authorities have said. ]]> Sun, 26 Oct 2014 23:48:39 -0600 <![CDATA[ Baseball by the numbers ]]> Lead story image

CUBS NINE TO KNOW 1. Against the five National League postseason teams, the Cubs were 3-4 against the Nationals, 9-10 against the Cardinals, 3-4 against the Dodgers, 5-14 against the Pirates and 2-4 against the Giants. 2. The importance of making contact: The Royals’ hitters had a strikeout rate of 16.3 percent, the lowest in the majors. The Cubs had a strikeout rate of 24.2 percent, the highest in the majors. The Cubs had the highest strikeout-to-walk ratio in the NL at 3.34. 3. Not only did the Cubs score 64 first-inning runs this season, they scored 64 second-inning runs … ]]> Thu, 27 Nov 2014 07:01:49 -0600 <![CDATA[ Giants weren’t always the model of baseball success ]]> Lead story image

I spent the middle third of my life in Northern California, and, though the memory dims, I recall the 49ers being routinely great, the Athletics mostly good, the Warriors always entertaining and the Raiders as those of whom nobody spoke after Al Davis callously spurned an insanely loyal fan base for the unfulfilled promise of Los Angeles. The Giants, though, were my team. It’s mostly a baseball thing — baseball always has been No. 1 with me — and partly familiarity. The Giants were my assignment as a beat writer back in the 1980s. They weren’t often good, but they … ]]> Thu, 20 Nov 2014 06:33:17 -0600 <![CDATA[ Oft-criticized Royals manager Ned Yost is now toast of town ]]> Lead story image

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — The Thump Monkeys are trailing, and comedian Jeff Foxworthy isn’t happy. They’re not just trailing; they’re getting creamed. Hunting season started weeks ago in Georgia, and Foxworthy’s team is getting shelled by another group that calls itself the Killbillies. ‘‘The Thump Monkeys have never been defeated in a whole season,’’ Foxworthy said, ‘‘but it’s not good right now. If it was baseball, we’d be down 8-0 in the third. But we’re not giving up.’’ Not yet, anyway. Not until they get their ace back. The problem is, Foxworthy doesn’t know whether Ned Yost will be home … ]]> Sat, 18 Oct 2014 19:38:25 -0600 <![CDATA[ What’s up with: Ex-Sox, Cubs third baseman Vance Law ]]> Lead story image

The baseball playoffs have prompted the seemingly annual debate about the length of games — and with good reason, considering the average game is dragging on for 3½ hours. Vance Law knows about long games. The former White Sox and Cubs third baseman played all 25 innings of the longest game ever, an 8-hour, 6-minute marathon between the Sox and Brewers in 1984 that started on a Tuesday and ended on a Wednesday. After that, Law played nine more innings in the regularly scheduled game, which ended — mercifully — in 2 hours, 9 minutes. That’s 34 innings in two … ]]> Thu, 20 Nov 2014 06:22:57 -0600 <![CDATA[ Baseball by the numbers ]]> Lead story image

This week’s names and numbers in baseball: WHITE SOX NINE TO KNOW 1.Quickness and length of swing are measured by how well batters do on pitches 92 mph or faster. The Sox’ Jose Abreu had the best batting average in baseball on those pitches at .375. 2.This isn’t a good pattern: In 2010, the Sox struck out 922 times. In 2011, they whiffed 989 times. In 2012, they fanned 1,203 times. Last season, they struck out 1,207 times. And this season, they whiffed 1,362 times. 3. Nori Aoki had 31 hits against the Sox and hit .492 against them this … ]]> Thu, 20 Nov 2014 06:24:02 -0600 <![CDATA[ Travis Ishikawa’s walk-off HR sends Giants to World Series ]]> Lead story image

SAN FRANCISCO — Travis Ishikawa hit the first homer to end an NL Championship Series, a three-run shot that sent the San Francisco Giants to the World Series with a 6-3 win over the St. Louis Cardinals in Game 5 on Thursday night. These every-other-year Giants will face the Royals in an all wild-card Fall Classic that begins Tuesday night in Kansas City. Pablo Sandoval singled to start the ninth against Michael Wacha, making his first appearance of the postseason for the Cardinals. After an out, Brandon Belt walked to bring up Ishikawa, who drove a 2-0 pitch into the … ]]> Thu, 16 Oct 2014 23:45:34 -0600 <![CDATA[ Giants one win from clinching World Series berth, earn 6-4 win in Game 4 ]]> Lead story image

SAN FRANCISCO — Buster Posey drove in three runs and the San Francisco Giants took advantage of some clunky defense by St. Louis first baseman Matt Adams, beating the Cardinals 6-4 on Wednesday night to move within one victory of the World Series. Chasing their third title in five years, the Giants lead the best-of-seven NL Championship Series 3-1 after poor throws cost the Cardinals yet again. October ace Madison Bumgarner can pitch San Francisco to another pennant Thursday night at home in Game 5. Struggling All-Star Adam Wainwright starts for St. Louis, now facing the same daunting deficit the … ]]> Wed, 15 Oct 2014 23:17:13 -0600 <![CDATA[ Royals sweep Orioles, clinch first World Series berth since 1985 ]]> Lead story image

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — With more dominant defense, an opportunistic offense that plated two runs in the first inning and a bullpen that shut down the Baltimore Orioles once again, Greg Holland and the Kansas City Royals wrapped up a sweep of the AL Championship Series with a 2-1 victory on Wednesday. Next stop: the Royals’ first World Series since 1985, when they last made the playoffs. Kansas City hosts the first two games beginning Tuesday against the winner of the NLCS between the San Francisco Giants and St. Louis Cardinals. Jason Vargas combined with three relievers on a four-hitter, … ]]> Wed, 15 Oct 2014 18:12:00 -0600 <![CDATA[ Royals one win from first World Series berth since 1985, edge Orioles 2-1 ]]> Lead story image

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Billy Butler drove in the go-ahead run in the sixth inning, and the Royals’ bullpen shut down the Baltimore Orioles the rest of the way for a 2-1 victory Tuesday night that gave Kansas City a commanding 3-0 lead in the AL Championship Series. Third baseman Mike Moustakas made two marvelous plays as the Royals won their 10th straight postseason game, including all seven this year. Kansas City will send Jason Vargas to the mound for Game 4 on Wednesday needing just one more win to reach their first World Series since 1985. Miguel Gonzalez will … ]]> Tue, 14 Oct 2014 22:10:36 -0600 <![CDATA[ Gregor Blanco gives Giants 2-1 NLCS lead on walkoff bunt ]]> Lead story image

SAN FRANCISCO — Once the Giants finally got a bunt down, the rest was easy. A wild throw by reliever Randy Choate on a bunt allowed Brandon Crawford to score the winning run in the bottom of the 10th inning, lifting the San Francisco Giants over the St. Louis Cardinals 5-4 on Tuesday for a 2-1 lead in the NL Championship Series. Crawford drew an eight-pitch walk from Choate to begin the inning, ending a stretch of 16 straight Giants retired since Tim Hudson’s two-out single in the fourth. After failing on two sacrifice attempts, Juan Perez singled to bring … ]]> Tue, 14 Oct 2014 19:26:12 -0600 <![CDATA[ ALCS Game 3 between Royals-Orioles postponed because of rain ]]> Lead story image

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Game 3 of the AL Championship Series has been postponed because of rain. The game was pushed back from Monday to Tuesday at 8:07 p.m. EDT. Wei-Yin Chen starts for the Orioles against former Baltimore pitcher Jeremy Guthrie. Game 4 was rescheduled Wednesday at 4:07 p.m. EDT, and both managers said they could bring back their Game 1 pitchers on regular rest: James Shields for Kansas City and Chris Tillman for Baltimore. They also could remain with the starters who had been slated to pitch Game 4: the Royals’ Jason Vargas and the Orioles’ Miguel Gonzales. … ]]> Mon, 13 Oct 2014 16:36:00 -0600 <![CDATA[ Kolten Wong hits walkoff home run for Cardinals, ties NLCS at 1 ]]> Lead story image

ST. LOUIS — Kolten Wong hit a leadoff home run in the ninth inning and the resilient St. Louis Cardinals beat the San Francisco Giants 5-4 Sunday night, evening the NL Championship Series at one game each. The Cardinals lost All-Star catcher Yadier Molina to a strained oblique muscle in the sixth. St. Louis got late homers from Oscar Taveras and Matt Adams before Wong connected off Sergio Romo. The Giants made it 4-all when pinch-runner Matt Duffy dashed home from second base on a two-out wild pitch in the ninth. Game 3 will be Tuesday in San Francisco. … ]]> Sun, 12 Oct 2014 23:01:51 -0600 <![CDATA[ MLB playoffs have no need for Red Sox, Yankees ]]> Lead story image

ESPN probably advised against it, but Major League Baseball went ahead with its postseason minus the Red Sox and Yankees. The game is none the worse for it, despite what the TV ratings might say. There is beauty in unpredictability — sure, you saw Kansas City coming, and Baltimore, and invincible Clayton Kershaw hanging a curveball to portly Matt Adams with a National League Division Series on the line. The Royals were 29 years between October assignments, and the Orioles had lost three of their top guys to injury and a drug suspension. But here they are, meeting in the … ]]> Thu, 13 Nov 2014 06:14:03 -0600