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Blue Jays earn 5-2 win over Yankees




DUNEDIN, Fla. — Whit Merrifield hit a homer in two runs and added an RBI single as the Toronto Blue Jays beat the New York Yankees 5-2 in spring practice on Saturday.

The Yankees took an early 2-0 lead thanks to RBIs from Anthony Rizzo and Giancarlo Stanton.

However, Vladimir Guerrero Jr. started the Blue Jays with a solo shot late in the first inning to cut the deficit in half.

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Merrifield gave Toronto a 3-2 lead with his homer in the third inning. In the fourth, Danny Jansen drove Matt Chapman home with a double before Merrfield struck again shortly after and Cavan hit Biggio.

Bowden Francis started on the mound for the Blue Jays. He knocked out five batters while giving up a walk, three hits and two runs in three innings of action.

Toronto (13-10) next plays the Tampa Bay Rays on Sunday.

Earlier Saturday, the Blue Jays announced they had used pitchers Adrian Hernandez and Casey Lawrence and infielder Rainer Nunez for minor league spring training. They remain eligible to play for the spring training games if necessary.

Fifty-three players (30 pitchers, six catchers, 11 infielders and six outfielders) remain in the major league camp for Toronto.

This report from The Canadian Press was first published on March 18, 2023.

&copy 2023 The Canadian Press


Steven Gerrard sends message to Harry Kane over Man Utd transfer interest | Football




Harry Kane is England’s new all-time goalscorer (Getty)

Steven Gerrard believes Harry Kane must move to Tottenham this summer Manchester UnitedInterest.

Kane became England’s all-time top scorer on Thursday night when he scored England’s second goal in a 2-1 win over Italy.

The 29-year-old has two more years on his contract with Tottenham It’s understood Spurs would accept a £100million offer for the striker this summer.

United will be on the hunt for a new striker at the end of the season and Kane is top of the shortlist alongside Napoli’s Victor Osimhen.

After failing to make a move to Manchester City in the summer of 2021, Gerrard has urged Kane to make another push to leave Tottenham.

“It’s an incredible penalty, it’s accurate, it clears the side netting. He’s one of the best penalty takers in the world, that’s why it was so surprising what happened to him in the penalty shootout World Championship‘ said Gerrard, who worked as a pundit for Channel 4.

“You’re talking about greatness, you’re talking about one of the best No9s in the world right now and that’s why he’s ahead in every transfer window in terms of all the talks because maybe it’s time , maybe it’s on the time he moves on.’

Steven Gerrard believes now is the time Harry Kane switched clubs (Photo only via Getty)

After surpassing Wayne Rooney’s record to score his 54th goal for England, Kane said: “I don’t like to look too far into the future but I’m 29, feeling fit and strong, the best I’ve been in felt in my career. I hope I have many more years.

“Playing for England is probably my greatest feeling in football. I want to do that for as long as possible and score in every game as a striker.

“Hopefully there will be many more.”

Meanwhile, England manager Gareth Southgate praised Kane’s performance as the Three Lions made a successful start to their Euro 2024 qualifiers in Naples.

“His overall performance was outstanding – he dominated the centre-backs,” said Southgate.

“You could see early on that he was there.

“Breaking the record like he did shows the strength of his character and his mentality. I couldn’t be happier for him and his family – they are lovely people. He’s a brilliant professional.

“Breaking the record while he still has a lot of career ahead of him is an incredible achievement. The players then gave him a brilliant reception, which was a reaction to breaking the record and from which he had to recover.

“I can’t remember what he said but I’m sure it was on video because nowadays everything is filmed and nothing stays in the house. Everyone realized it was a special, historic moment and he deserves every bit of credit he gets.”

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Punch thrown following Bowling Green-Memphis WNIT game




BOWLING GREEN, Ohio (AP) — A confrontation between two players in the post-game handshake line after Bowling Green’s win over Memphis Thursday night at the women’s NIT was referred to campus police.

As the teams headed to Center Court after Bowling Green’s 73-60 win in the round of 16, Memphis’ Jamirah Shutes stopped to speak with Falcons player Elissa Brett. After a brief conversation, Shute’s board appears to deliver a slap in the face. Brett fell to the scorer’s table and the sidelines.

There was no immediate word as to what caused the confrontation or if any player was seriously injured.

Bowling Green said in a statement that the incident is in the hands of campus police.

“The incident, which occurred after today’s WNIT home game, was turned over to the BGSU Police Department,” the school said. “Bowling Green State University Athletics is not commenting on an active police investigation. Our priority is the health, safety and support of our student-athletes.”

Bowling Green coach Robyn Frölich did not directly comment on the incident after the game, saying only that they “would figure out all these things” that happened in the handshake line.

The Memphis Sports Information Bureau did not immediately respond to an email from The Associated Press requesting comment.

The Memphis Commercial Appeal newspaper reported that Shutes, who leads the Tigers in scoring, elbowed in the face with 24 seconds left in the first quarter and played just eight minutes in the first half. She returned to start the second half.

Shutes, a fifth-year player who finished her last game with the Tigers with 13 points, was a second-team All-AAC selection this season.

Brett scored 15 points in the win.


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Everything you need to know before the playoffs begin




The Winnipeg Jets fell like a stone in the standings. The good news for Winnipeg fans is that despite their poor record over the past month and a half, they still hold a playoff spot due to the lack of parody in the Western Conference. The Jets are likely to have either a second wildcard spot or, in an unlikely scenario, third place in the Central Division.

Here’s a look at where the Winnipeg Jets stand as they battle for the NHL playoffs


If anyone had any doubts prior to this season that Kyle Connor was a true top forward, he proved them wrong and then some. Not even the Winnipeg Jets projected Connor as a points-per-game player when he was drafted. But behind the game with talented linemates like Pierre Luc-Dubois, Connor was able to net the puck more than consistently.

The Winnipeg Jets don’t have a lot of depth in their forward group, but they make up for it with experience. Players like Blake Wheeler, Mark Scheifele, Nikolaj Ehlers and Adam Lowry have played alongside each other for more than half a decade. While not every one of them was a world stopper, the players, combined with the experience they brought to the table and the Jets’ second line, were some of the most productive of the season.


The Winnipeg Jets forward and defensive lineup are polar opposites. The Jets’ six defenders each lead the team in defensive point percentages. Apart from Josh Morrissey, none of them are at the top of the offensive point stocks. That means the Jets almost exclusively let their forwards attack, their D-Man defend.

That strategy had its downsides this season. On paper, the Winnipeg Jets should have one of the best blue lines in the entire league, but that hasn’t panned out in the last month. The Jets are struggling to limit opponents’ chances to score, which has led to a goal deficit. The Jets rely far too heavily on thugs like Logan Stanley and Kyle Copobianco in their lineup, both of whom rank last on their teams in total defense.


Connor Hellebuyck is officially back. The Winnipeg Jets goaltender plays some of the best hockey he’s played in his entire career. Hellebuyck was a workhorse goaltender for the Jets, starting in 55 of the team’s 72 games. Hellebuyck has a savings percentage of .918 and an GAA of just over two and a half. With just 31 wins, that means the Jets need to play D better in front of their keeper.

The Jets have a perfectly viable backup in David Rittich who, if you can count on him, has performed well for Winnipeg. He’s probably not the name fans would trust to turn to if Hellebuyck got injured or struggled in the playoffs, but he’s reliable in short sprints.

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