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    Another Olympic medalist has criticized the IAAF's testosterone regulations and is refusing to take hormone-reducing medication. Margaret Wambui of Kenya, who won bronze in the 800 meters behind Caster Semenya at the 2016 Olympics, says she is affected by the new rules but won't take 'any type of medication' to lower her natural testosterone. She calls it 'wrong' for the IAAF to ask athletes to alter 'our natural body function.' Semenya, a two-time Olympic 800-meter champion, lost her case against the IAAF, allowing track's governing body to implement testosterone limits in races from 400 meters to one mile. Wambui says she is considering switching to the 100 and 200 meters, events not affected by the rules. Semenya also says she won't take medication and has entered a 3,000-meter race in the United States next month. ___ More AP sports: https://apnews.com/apf-sports and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports
  • For the first time in 42 years, the Bills have a player wearing O.J. Simpson's former No. 32. Running back Senorise Perry wore the jersey number at Buffalo's spring practices this week. Simpson, whose name remains on the Bills Wall of Fame, served nine years for armed robbery and assault after confronting two sports collectibles dealers at a Las Vegas casino hotel in September 2007. The Pro Football Hall of Famer was acquitted of two counts of murder in the 1994 slayings of his ex-wife and her friend Ron Goldman, but a civil court jury found him liable for wrongful death and ordered him to pay $33.5 million. ___ More AP NFL: https://apnews.com/tag/NFL and https://twitter.com/AP_NFL
  • Seeing the famous photo of Bobby Orr scoring the 1970 Stanley Cup-winning goal to beat his St. Louis Blues doesn't bring back bad memories for Scotty Bowman. 'Not really,' the legendary coach said. 'Because we didn't have a big opportunity to win that series.' Orr and the big, bad Boston Bruins swept Bowman's overmatched, expansion-era Blues in that series. Now 49 years later, Boston is in its third final in nine seasons and St. Louis is back for the first time since 1970, but this Bruins-Blues rematch is a showdown between two of the NHL's best teams since Jan. 1. 'Now it's more level,' Bowman said. '(The Blues) don't give a lot of room in their end, and of course their goalie's been lights out.' Coming off a sweep of Carolina in the Eastern Conference final, the Bruins are favored in the series that begins Monday in Boston. Goaltender Tuukka Rask is the front-runner to win the Conn Smythe Trophy as playoff MVP. Brad Marchand is playing some of the best hockey of his career with 18 points in 17 games, and there's a mix of veterans from the 2011 Stanley Cup-winning team and fresh players eager to get their names etched on the trophy. 'I think as you get older, you appreciate it even more, and you realize how hard it is to get to this point and advance and be thankful and stay in the moment,' center Patrice Bergeron said. 'But then it's back to work, and there's a lot of work in front of us.' Unlike in 1970, when the Bruins essentially just had to step on the ice to take the final, these Blues won't go away. They woke up last in the league Jan. 3 before winning 30 of their final 45 games to roll into the playoffs, where they beat the Winnipeg Jets, Dallas Stars and San Jose Sharks. Bowman, who has coached a record nine Cup champions, only in recent days realized the Blues hadn't been to the final since he was there. He met his wife, Suzanne, when she was a nurse in St. Louis and he has a soft spot for this team because of connections to former players of his: consultant/assistant coach Larry Robinson and ambassadors Bob Plager and Brett Hull. He also likes the size of the Blues' blue line. 'They're all big, every one of them,' Bowman said. 'Their defense is very big and the right type of aggressiveness. They don't take a ton of penalties.' The Blues and Bruins are among the most disciplined teams in the playoffs, which has helped them reach this point. Now they'll have to deal with another issue: idle hands with so much time off. Boston will have a week and a half between finishing off Carolina and Game 1, and even St. Louis will go six days without playing. Bowman during his coaching career recalled making his players scrimmage at night to keep them in a rhythm, but there's no real substitute for the grind of the playoffs. 'I can't believe how long they're going to have to sit out,' Bowman said. 'It's quite a trick because they were on such a high.' ___ Follow AP Hockey Writer Stephen Whyno on Twitter at https://twitter.com/SWhyno ___ More AP NHL: https://apnews.com/NHL and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports
  • With a weary Kawhi Leonard fighting through fatigue, the Toronto Raptors found enough energy to pull away from the Milwaukee Bucks. Kyle Lowry led the way. Lowry scored 25 points, Leonard had 19 and the Raptors beat the Milwaukee Bucks 120-102 on Tuesday night to even the Eastern Conference finals at two games apiece. 'This was one of the nights that we knew Kawhi was a little bit limited and we had to come out and be aggressive for him,' Lowry said. Leonard played 52 minutes in a double-overtime win in Game 3 on Sunday despite dealing with leg soreness. He limped away from the basket following a third-quarter dunk in Game 4, but still toughed it out for 34 minutes. 'I feel good,' Leonard insisted. 'I'm going to keep going and keep fighting. We have a chance to make history.' Raptors coach Nick Nurse said he's not worried about Leonard's health. 'He's certainly tired, like a lot of guys in this series are,' Nurse said. 'He looks OK to me. There was one time I was trying to give him an extended rest and he didn't really want it so he must be OK.' Serge Ibaka had 17 points and 13 rebounds for the Raptors, who improved to 7-2 at home this postseason. Reserve Norm Powell scored 18 points, and Marc Gasol had 17 points and a team-high seven assists. 'The first two games, they really brought the intensity to us,' Powell said. 'They really came out and were more physical, more active. We wanted to change that narrative coming home.' The home team has won all four games in the series so far. Game 5 is Thursday night in Milwaukee. 'We need to take this challenge of playing in a hostile environment,' Nurse said. 'We're going into a tough, loud place to play. Let's see if those guys can bring that same pop and focus and determination on the road.' Giannis Antetokounmpo had 25 points and 10 rebounds for the top-seeded Bucks. Khris Middleton scored 30 points, but no one else had more than 11. Milwaukee lost its second straight following a six-game winning streak. It dropped consecutive games just once during the regular season, at Utah on March 2 and at Phoenix on March 4. 'This is probably the first night defensively where I don't feel like we were close to where you need to be,' coach Mike Budenholzer said. 'We got punched. They played really well.' Toronto's Fred VanVleet, who missed 16 of 20 shot attempts through the first three games of the series, went 5 for 6 from the field in Game 4. He made each of his three 3-point tries and finished with 13 points. 'He needed one of those games,' Lowry said. 'He played well and made some great plays tonight.' Ahead 94-81 to start the fourth, the Raptors extended their lead with a 10-3 spurt, including seven points from VanVleet. Powell's fast-break layup with 8:35 left put Toronto up 104-84. 'We've got to guard better,' Middleton said. 'Everybody on their team, I feel like they got pretty much whatever they wanted. Everything was easy.' Antetokounmpo shot 5 for 8 in the opening frame, matching the number of made baskets he had during Game 3. However, the Bucks star went 4 for 9 the rest of the way. Leonard and Pascal Siakam, who both played more than 50 minutes Sunday, looked sluggish in the opening half. Leonard missed the only shot he took in the second, while Siakam played fewer than three minutes in the second after picking up his third foul. Siakam had two points at halftime. Leonard came up limping after dunking against Antetokounmpo early in the third, but remained in the game. Moments later, Siakam completed a three-point play that put Toronto up 73-60 with 8:43 left. 'We just came out in the third quarter flat,' Antetokounmpo said. Ilyasova missed a 3 with 3:50 remaining in the third that could have cut the deficit to four points. Powell replied with a 3 and, following miss by Malcolm Brogdon, Leonard drained a jumper to push Toronto's lead to 86-74. TIP-INS Bucks: Middleton missed his first attempt of the game, and then made the next eight in row. He finished 11 for 15. ... Antetokounmpo air-balled his first free-throw attempt in the first quarter. ... Brogdon shot 0 for 5 in the first half and missed seven straight before connecting late in the third. He finished 2 for 11. Raptors: Lowry scored 12 of Toronto's first 17 points. He finished 10 for 10 at the line. ... The Raptors are 4-0 on Tuesdays in these playoffs. ... Toronto outscored Milwaukee 28-6 on bench points in the first half. The Raptors finished with a 48-23 advantage in bench scoring. ... Siakam scored seven points, his lowest total in these playoffs. ... Leonard had four of Toronto's nine steals. PROUD PAPA VanVleet became a father for the second time Monday with the birth of his first son, Fred Jr. ATTENTION HOG Even when Leonard isn't scoring 35, Lowry said the three-time All-Star still helps with spacing. 'The great thing about having him on your team is he still gets all the attention,' Lowry said. 'That's the benefit of having a superstar like him on the team.' MANY TONGUES Ibaka answered post-game questions in English, French, and Spanish, and jokingly asked whether anyone wanted to talk to him in Italian or Portuguese. ___ More AP NBA: https://apnews.com/NBA and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports
  • The St. Louis Blues are marching into the Stanley Cup Final for the first time in decades. Pretty sweet moment for Vladimir Tarasenko and Co. David Perron had a goal and an assist, Jordan Binnington picked up his franchise-record 12th playoff win and the Blues eliminated the San Jose Sharks with a 5-1 win in Game 6 of the Western Conference final Tuesday night. Tarasenko, Brayden Schenn and Tyler Bozak also scored for St. Louis, which will face the Boston Bruins for the championship. Ivan Barbashev got an empty-netter with 2:15 left, Ryan O'Reilly had three assists and Binnington stopped 25 shots. 'We always believed we could do this,' said Tarasenko, who had a point in every game of the series. 'But it's still an unbelievable feeling.' St. Louis won three consecutive games to advance to the franchise's first Cup Final since 1970. That series also pitted the Blues against the Bruins. Game 1 is Monday night in Boston. Laura Branigan's 'Gloria' blared over the speakers at the Blues' home arena after the latest victory on an improbable run from last in the NHL Jan. 3 to one of the last two teams standing. The turnaround came after Craig Berube replaced Mike Yeo as coach in November and Binnington took over as the starting goaltender in January. 'We always had the talent,' said Doug Armstrong, the general manager and president of hockey operations for the Blues. 'But we were finding ways to lose games instead of winning them. They turned it around and just haven't stopping going.' Berube gave his team credit for working its way through a coaching change and several months of disappointing play. 'We were trying to get on the right track,' Berube said. 'Once we got going in January and February, I knew we had a good hockey team. Once you get into the playoffs anything can happen — and it did.' Blues defenseman Colton Parayko said it was a matter of confidence. 'We all bought in and eventually we figured out just how good we can be,' he said. 'It's a tight-knit group. But that adversity, it made us work harder for each other.' San Jose played without injured forwards Joe Pavelski and Tomas Hertl and defenseman Erik Karlsson. Injury attrition played a role for the Sharks, who played seven games in each of the first two rounds. Dylan Gambrell scored his first career goal for San Jose, which lost for the first time in five elimination games this postseason. Martin Jones made 14 stops. St. Louis grabbed control with a fast start. Perron tipped in Sammy Blais' shot just 92 seconds into the game. Tarasenko made it 2-0 with a well-placed wrist shot at 16:16. Tarasenko got his eighth goal of the postseason just seven seconds after San Jose forward Barclay Goodrow was sent off for tripping. Gambrell converted a breakaway along the right wing 6:40 into the second period. Joonas Donskoi set up the play with a long stretch pass. Gambrell's goal came just seconds after Jones stopped Pat Maroon from close range. It also stopped the Sharks' scoring drought at 99 minutes, 32 seconds. Schenn pushed the lead to 3-1 with a power-play goal 12:47 into the second. He pounced on the rebound of a shot by Alex Pietrangelo for his first goal in 14 games. Bozak scored on a feed from Perron in the third period for a 4-1 lead. Binnington improved to 12-7 with his second straight strong effort. He made 21 saves in a 5-0 win in Game 4 on Sunday. The 25-year-old Binnington stopped Evander Kane on the doorstep midway through the third. He also denied Logan Couture on a breakaway later in the period. 'It's excitement and relief,' Binnington said. 'We put in all the work. It's pretty special. The final minutes, counting down and how loud it was in the rink, it was a special moment.' The Sharks took a 2-1 lead in the series, but were outscored 12-2 in losing the final three games. 'I think the two hardest, heaviest teams are in the final,' San Jose coach Peter DeBoer said. 'There wasn't any room out there. And when there was — Binnington made some saves.' Couture had four of the Sharks' 26 shots on goal. 'When you lose this opportunity and it gets snatched away from you it's very hard to take,' Couture said. 'You've got to get over it.' Former Blues players Bob Plager, Brett Hull, Chris Pronger and Al MacInnis were in attendance along with numerous other former players. Plager was in tears in the locker room after the win. NOTES: St. Louis went 0-12 in its three previous Stanley Cup appearances. ... The team that scored first won all six games. ... Referee Wes McCauley left in the first period with a lower-body injury. He was replaced by alternate Gord Dwyer. ... St. Louis D Vince Dunn missed his third consecutive game with an upper-body injury. He took a puck to the mouth in the first period of Game 3. ... St. Louis pitcher Adam Wainwright and catcher Yadier Molina attended the game after the Cardinals' matchup with Kansas City was rained out. ___ More AP NHL: https://apnews.com/NHL and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports
  • Justin Verlander of the Houston Astros had his no-hitter against the Chicago White Sox broken up with one out in the seventh on a home run by Jose Abreu. Verlander retired his first five batters with three strikeouts before walking Yonder Alonso with two outs in the second. But he got right back on track, sitting down Tim Anderson to end the inning. Verlander needed just 11 pitches to strike out the side in the third inning and fanned two in the fourth. He struck out one in the fifth and one more in the sixth after a long layoff after the Astros sent eight hitters to the plate in the bottom of the fifth. Yoán Moncada struck out to start the seventh before Abreu sent the first pitch of his at-bat over the wall in straightaway center field for Chicago's first hit. Houston leads 5-1. ___ More AP MLB: https://apnews.com/MLB and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports
  • A look at what's happening around the majors today: CURTAIN UP! LIGHT THE LIGHTS! Max Scherzer, the 2016 and '17 NL Cy Young Award winner, starts for Washington and Jacob deGrom, the 2018 NL Cy Young winner, starts for the New York Mets in a rematch of opening-day starters. The Mets won the opener 2-0 as deGrom struck out 10 and walked one in six innings, allowing six hits. Scherzer gave up two runs and two hits in 7 2/3 innings, striking out 12 and walking three. Robinson Canó homered in the first and added an RBI single in the eighth against reliever Matt Grace. YOU'RE A MAN WHO GOES TRAVELING Cole Hamels (4-0) starts for the Chicago Cubs in his first career start against the Philadelphia Phillies, the team that signed him as a first-round pick in the 2002 amateur draft. Hamels was 114-90 for the Phillies from 2006-15, helping Philadelphia win the 2008 World Series and the 2009 NL pennant. He was traded to Texas in July 2015 and to the Cubs last July. Rookie Cole Irvin (2-0) starts for the Phillies. WE HAVE SO MUCH IN COMMON Milwaukee's Zach Davies (5-0) takes a 1.54 ERA, second in the major leagues behind the 1.52 for Los Angeles Dodgers pitcher Hyun-jin Ryu, into his start against Cincinnati. Before this year, Davies had won his first decision just once, as a rookie in September 2015. Reds starter Luis Castillo (5-1) is third in the NL with a 1.90 ERA. I'M ELECTRIFYING The Dodgers' Cody Bellinger hit 17 homers in the Los Angeles Dodgers' first 48 games, one shy of the team record set by Gil Hodges in 1951 and matched by Raúl Mondesi in 1999. Roy Campanella had 17 through 48 games in 1953 and 1955, and Duke Snider also reached that figure in 1955. ___ More AP MLB: https://apnews.com/MLB and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports
  • Responding to criticism after some fans buying tickets for the Women's World Cup were not given seats together, FIFA said it was working toward a solution with the local organizing committee in France. Tickets were made available for printing Monday and ticket holders learned their seats were sometimes split up in separate rows and different sections — even couples and families with children were separated. The backlash on social media was swift. On Tuesday, FIFA posted a statement to its website explaining that high demand for some matches, including the semifinal and final in Lyon, meant only single seats were available. FIFA also said that it estimates only a small number of fans are affected. 'FIFA and the Local Organizing Committee are continuing to work towards finding the best solution for all fans attending the FIFA Women's World Cup and, in particular, are doing everything they can to ensure that families will always be seated together at each and every match,' the statement said, referencing a phone number and email for inquiries. The tournament starts June 7 and runs through July 7. The situation could cause problems in the stadiums before games, when fans may try to swap seats to sit next to friends or family members. FIFA's website included a disclaimer that the local organizing committee has assigned the French firm APS2 to handle online ticket sales. AP2S did not immediately respond to an email seeking comment. ___ More AP soccer: https://apnews.com/apf-Soccer and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports
  • While swimming to Olympic glory, Michael Phelps found comfort in the pool and quite a bit of angst out of it. His bout with depression reached its nadir in 2014 after a second DUI arrest. That's when the most decorated Olympian of all time checked himself into a rehabilitative center in a desperate effort to make sense of it all. 'When I was in my room and not wanting to talk to anybody for a number of days and not wanting to be alive, I wanted to see what other roads I could take to see if there was help,' Phelps recalled. The treatment he received — and continues to receive — charted his post-Olympic course. 'I know it's something that changed my life and saved my life and allowed me to be able to be where I am today, enjoying the platform of talking about something that's so important,' Phelps told The Associated Press in an interview Tuesday. Because he is willing to share his story of depression and raise awareness of mental health issues, Phelps was given the fifth annual Morton E. Ruderman Award in Inclusion on Tuesday night in Boston. After participating in four Olympic Games and collecting 28 medals, including 23 gold, Phelps has dedicated his time and energy to promoting the importance of water safety and advocating for the de-stigmatization of mental health problems through the Michael Phelps Foundation. 'When I first really opened up about the struggles that I had in '15, obviously I dreamed of being able to get more publicity to this and to really share my journey and have other people share their journeys with me as well,' Phelps said. 'Honestly, I never thought it would be as big as this, but it's been a true dream to be able to watch the growth that mental health has taken, almost being at center stage.' To say this endeavor has been fulfilling is an understatement. 'Through this, if I can save one life, two lives, five lives, a thousand, a million, to me that's so much more important than winning a gold medal,' he said. The 33-year-old Phelps believes his bout with depression is a story that many can share, including CEOs and other retired athletes. After accomplishing every goal he set for himself, what was left to do? 'Probably my first real depression spell was after 2004, then the next big one was after 2008,' he said. 'When you set out to be an Olympian, your whole life is put on hold. All the eggs are in one basket. I would say 2004, 2008, 2012, partly after '16 (all Olympic years) I've dealt with pretty severe depression spells. I was kind of lost at that point.' The Baltimore native is in a far better frame of mind now. 'To have my wife (Nicole Johnson), who's always by my side, two amazing little boys at home and a third one on the way, I'm extremely thankful of the support I've had to get me through these times,' Phelps said. The Ruderman Award is given to individuals who are passionate about providing opportunities for others. Phelps certainly fits that description. 'Michael Phelps is a unique leader who has used his fame and status as the greatest swimmer of all time to challenge our society to remove stigma surrounding mental health,' said Jay Ruderman, president of the Ruderman Family Foundation. 'For me, this award means everything because this is where my passion is and the next chapter of my life is really heading,' Phelps said. 'We're kind of scratching the surface of what can be done, and I'm looking forward to continuing this journey and accomplishing some of the goals that I have — de-stigmatizing mental health and just getting the point across that it's OK to not be OK.' ___ More AP sports: https://apnews.com/apf-Sports and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports
  • JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — DawgNation has reported a lot about Carson Beck over the last week. Beck has his eye on several top targets for the rest of the 2020 class. He made a throw in the Florida Class 8A state championship that folks will not soon forget. The 6 foot-4 (and a half-inch) rising senior even convinced his QB trainer why the Bulldogs were a perfect fit for his game at the college level. His trainer, Denny Thompson, knows the 4-star QB as well as anyone. He has helped chisel an Elite 11 QB out of a guy with just four games of varsity experience prior to last season. Beck then took the reins at Mandarin High School and went on to be a rare junior to win the “Mr. Football” honor for the state of Florida. Thompson has strong opinions and knows just how to deliver them. That’s why he hosts a popular sports talk radio show in Jacksonville. He says the things most might expect Beck’s trainer to say. He even shared he would put aside his allegiance to the Gators (as a fan) when it comes to Beck. That’s his guy. After all. In Beck, he has a pupil that he feels has as strong of a “functional arm” as he has seen recently in a prospect. There was this one other guy. His name will come up in that video interview up above. If you watch Carson Beck work, it does sometimes look like he is firing off a pair of six-shooters both before and after snaps. (Jeff Sentell/DawgNation) Where Carson Beck can get better  He also knows the work Beck still has to do. The young passer needs to work on the technical aspects of the position. Most big-time guys his age still need to do that, too. Thompson shared his most important teaching point for Beck. “That’s probably the part of his game where it is like ‘Carson for you to take that real next step I need you to throw the same exact ball every single time and know exactly where it is going’ and we’re working on that. A lot of that is weight distribution and has nothing to do with the arm. [It] has everything to do with weight distribution and how you use your right hip and things of that nature.” He’s encouraged by the fact Beck is always asking him “why” things need to be done a certain way. It leads to a deeper understanding of what he is trying to learn how to do the same way every single time. That’s what he wants to see in a young man with tools like his. Beck would devour the game film of the next opponent on Sunday mornings with Thompson. Those sessions would last up to four hours. Thompson wouldn’t be able to deal with his wife most weekends if those sessions extended any longer. “Those guys were then beaten by the time he hit the practice field on Monday,” Thompson said. “That is his mindset with the work it takes to be great.” What Carson Beck can be at Georgia Beck is not a polished product yet. Even though all the tools are there. Thompson does make that clear. He is still big on what he can bring to the table, though. That was evident when he gave a very strong answer to this query: “ What can Georgia be with Carson Beck?” “I think with the momentum that they’ve got recruiting I think Carson is the guy who wins you a national championship,” Thompson said. “I really do.” Big bold words. But then Thompson continued to provide the right baseline to the conversation. He did so this time by adding real accountability to his own methods. He might regret saying this later. But he still said it. “Carson is the kind of kid that if he is not a first-round [NFL] guy I failed him,” Thompson said. “We failed him as coaches. Everything is there: Head. Size. Arm. Everything you want is there. Leadership. I mean he’s recruiting his butt off for Georgia right now. Everything is there.” “So if something other than injury happens. Then it is probably on me as a trainer or them as coaches or whatever it is. He is definitely the kind of talent though that you can win a national championship with.” Want to see the full context of that statement? With a bonus thought about who Thompson feels is the best college comparison to Beck? Check out the video interview above. Carson Beck is set to enroll at UGA in January of 2020. He currently rates as the nation’s No. 3 pro-style passer for 2020 on the 247Sports Composite ratings. (Jeff Sentell/DawgNation) Carson Beck Beck on deck: Getting to know the UGA commit Carson Beck commits to UGA Carson Beck escalates his recruiting efforts for the Bulldogs Beck names off his top 5 targets for the 2020 class in Athens The throw Carson Beck made that the state of Florida is still buzzing about  The first Beck win for UGA? Getting a Gator to gush about the present and future in Athens The post The two strongest statements yet about what Carson Beck can be at Georgia appeared first on DawgNation.

Georgia Sports News

  • SAN FRANCISCO (AP) - Joe Panik was fairly calm in the midst of his eight-pitch battle with Atlanta closer Luke Jackson. A pair of stolen bases earlier in the ninth inning, including one by pinch-runner Mac Williamson that put the winning run in scoring position, helped take the pressure off the Giants leadoff hitter. Panik hit a game-ending two-run single off Jackson with two outs in the ninth to lift the San Francisco Giants to a 4-3 win over the Braves on Tuesday night. 'Great comeback,' Giants manager Bruce Bochy said. 'We looked pretty flat. We just couldn't get it going. To come back and win it in the ninth like that, that's huge.' Brandon Crawford began the comeback with a one-out single. After Steven Duggar struck out, Kevin Pillar singled in Crawford. Pillar stole second then moved to third on Pablo Sandoval's pinch-hit infield single. Williamson stole second before Panik slapped a 3-2 pitch from Jackson into right field to cap the three-run rally. 'Any time you can advance 90 feet it's big in that situation,' Panik said. 'Especially for me, having Mac at second base versus first base, I don't have to hit a double to win the game. Just stay within myself, stay through the middle of the field and you can win the game that way with a single. Every 90 feet matters.' It's the fourth blown save this season for Jackson (2-1) and spoiled an otherwise strong day by the Braves pitching staff. Atlanta had won four straight against San Francisco and allowed one run in all four. The Braves were in position to make it five before the Giants rallied with three runs and four hits in the ninth. The stolen bases by Pillar and Williamson provided the late lift San Francisco needed. 'Kevin, he's a base stealer but once Mac got it, now you realize it just takes a hit and you win the game,' Bochy said. 'You saw the energy pick up in the dugout. We did a nice job.' Panik and Buster Posey had two hits apiece for San Francisco. Trevor Gott (2-0) retired three batters to win. Josh Donaldson, Nick Markakis, Ronald Acu a Jr. and Dansby Swanson had two hits apiece for Atlanta. 'A foot here and a foot there and we would have won,' Atlanta catcher Brian McCann said. 'But it's baseball and you've got to turn the page.' Braves starter Julio Teheran struck out six and gave up three hits and one run in 5 2/3 innings. Teheran has a 0.79 ERA over his last four starts covering 22 2/3 innings. He lost three straight decisions to close out April and had a pair of no-decisions in his first two starts in May. Acu a backed Teheran with a terrific leaping grab at the fence in center field to rob Brandon Belt of extra bases in the third. PUT ME IN (ANYWHERE) COACH Vogt made his second career start in left field. The 34-year-old Vogt has logged 370 games behind the plate. Wednesday marked his fifth appearance in left field and first since 2014 when he was with the Oakland Athletics. ROSTER MOVE The Giants placed pitcher Travis Bergen on the 10-day injured list because of a left shoulder strain. Bergen is 2-0 with a 4.24 ERA in 18 games this season. Infielder Donovan Solano was recalled from Triple-A Sacramento before the game, one day after being sent down to make room for pitcher Andrew Suarez. UP NEXT Braves lefty Max Fried (6-2, 2.86 ERA) makes his fifth road start Wednesday. Fried pitched two-hit ball over six scoreless innings against Milwaukee on May 17. RHP Jeff Samardzija (2-2, 3.69) makes his first start against Atlanta since 2017. Samardzija threw a season-low 68 pitches in 5 1/3 innings in his most recent start against Arizona on May 17. __ More AP MLB: https://apnews.com/tag/MLB and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports
  • JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — DawgNation has reported a lot about Carson Beck over the last week. Beck has his eye on several top targets for the rest of the 2020 class. He made a throw in the Florida Class 8A state championship that folks will not soon forget. The 6 foot-4 (and a half-inch) rising senior even convinced his QB trainer why the Bulldogs were a perfect fit for his game at the college level. His trainer, Denny Thompson, knows the 4-star QB as well as anyone. He has helped chisel an Elite 11 QB out of a guy with just four games of varsity experience prior to last season. Beck then took the reins at Mandarin High School and went on to be a rare junior to win the “Mr. Football” honor for the state of Florida. Thompson has strong opinions and knows just how to deliver them. That’s why he hosts a popular sports talk radio show in Jacksonville. He says the things most might expect Beck’s trainer to say. He even shared he would put aside his allegiance to the Gators (as a fan) when it comes to Beck. That’s his guy. After all. In Beck, he has a pupil that he feels has as strong of a “functional arm” as he has seen recently in a prospect. There was this one other guy. His name will come up in that video interview up above. If you watch Carson Beck work, it does sometimes look like he is firing off a pair of six-shooters both before and after snaps. (Jeff Sentell/DawgNation) Where Carson Beck can get better  He also knows the work Beck still has to do. The young passer needs to work on the technical aspects of the position. Most big-time guys his age still need to do that, too. Thompson shared his most important teaching point for Beck. “That’s probably the part of his game where it is like ‘Carson for you to take that real next step I need you to throw the same exact ball every single time and know exactly where it is going’ and we’re working on that. A lot of that is weight distribution and has nothing to do with the arm. [It] has everything to do with weight distribution and how you use your right hip and things of that nature.” He’s encouraged by the fact Beck is always asking him “why” things need to be done a certain way. It leads to a deeper understanding of what he is trying to learn how to do the same way every single time. That’s what he wants to see in a young man with tools like his. Beck would devour the game film of the next opponent on Sunday mornings with Thompson. Those sessions would last up to four hours. Thompson wouldn’t be able to deal with his wife most weekends if those sessions extended any longer. “Those guys were then beaten by the time he hit the practice field on Monday,” Thompson said. “That is his mindset with the work it takes to be great.” What Carson Beck can be at Georgia Beck is not a polished product yet. Even though all the tools are there. Thompson does make that clear. He is still big on what he can bring to the table, though. That was evident when he gave a very strong answer to this query: “ What can Georgia be with Carson Beck?” “I think with the momentum that they’ve got recruiting I think Carson is the guy who wins you a national championship,” Thompson said. “I really do.” Big bold words. But then Thompson continued to provide the right baseline to the conversation. He did so this time by adding real accountability to his own methods. He might regret saying this later. But he still said it. “Carson is the kind of kid that if he is not a first-round [NFL] guy I failed him,” Thompson said. “We failed him as coaches. Everything is there: Head. Size. Arm. Everything you want is there. Leadership. I mean he’s recruiting his butt off for Georgia right now. Everything is there.” “So if something other than injury happens. Then it is probably on me as a trainer or them as coaches or whatever it is. He is definitely the kind of talent though that you can win a national championship with.” Want to see the full context of that statement? With a bonus thought about who Thompson feels is the best college comparison to Beck? Check out the video interview above. Carson Beck is set to enroll at UGA in January of 2020. He currently rates as the nation’s No. 3 pro-style passer for 2020 on the 247Sports Composite ratings. (Jeff Sentell/DawgNation) Carson Beck Beck on deck: Getting to know the UGA commit Carson Beck commits to UGA Carson Beck escalates his recruiting efforts for the Bulldogs Beck names off his top 5 targets for the 2020 class in Athens The throw Carson Beck made that the state of Florida is still buzzing about  The first Beck win for UGA? Getting a Gator to gush about the present and future in Athens The post The two strongest statements yet about what Carson Beck can be at Georgia appeared first on DawgNation.
  • ATHENS — Pitching and defense has been carrying Georgia all season. Now the bats have heated up, and that bodes very well for the Bulldogs, who enter postseason play as one of the nation’s top-ranked teams and a favorite to make it to Omaha. After this past weekend’s sweep of Alabama to close out the regular season, the Bulldogs (42-14, 21-9 SEC) moved up to No. 3 in the latest RPI calculations. That makes them a virtual lock to receive a national seed, regardless of what happens in this week’s SEC Tournament. National seeds go to the top eight teams in baseball and guarantee that recipients host games through the Super Regionals. Vanderbilt is No. 2, Mississippi State 4 and Arkansas 6 in the RPI released by the NCAA on Monday. So, theoretically, the Bulldogs could be “two and ‘cue” in the double-elimination SEC Tournament this week and still be in line to receive that distinct advantage. But they’re not leaving anything to chance. “You want to win every game that you play,” said coach Scott Stricklin of his Georgia squad, which opens play against Texas A&M at 10:30 a.m. (ET) Wednesday (SEC Network). “At this stage, I think we can still earn some national respect, not that it’s really that big of a deal for us. Internally, we know we’re a good team. We feel like we’re a 100 percent lock to be a Top 8 seed. There’s no way you win 21 games in this league and have an RPI of 3 and not be a Top 8. But certainly we would like to make a run.” The way the Bulldogs are suddenly swinging the bats, that would seem entirely possible. Thanks to the way Georgia ball hit the ball against Alabama — batting .402 and scoring 30 runs in three games — the Bulldogs are now hitting .275 as a team with 63 home runs, 336 RBI and a .434 slugging percentage. That puts them on pace to surpass last year’s power numbers, in which they hit 64 homers and had 352 RBI while slugging .425. That’s an unexpected outcome after losing last year’s three leading sluggers in Michael Curry (13 HRs), Keegan McGovern (18) and Adam Sasser (10). “We’ve just seen more consistency out of the lineup,” Stricklin said. “It’s really been the last three or four weeks, after Mississippi State, we’ve really swung the bats a lot better. We’re just getting more quality at-bats out of guys and wearing down the opposing pitching staffs and getting into the bullpen.” One big difference-maker has been designated hitter John Cable. The Roswell native came to Georgia as a late addition last June via a graduate transfer from the University of New Orleans. Batting fifth in the lineup, the 6-foot-2, 230-pounder is third on the team with a .316 average, slugging a second-best .544 and leads the Bulldogs with 45 RBI. This past Saturday, Cable hit his seventh home run and had his fourth 4-RBI game of the season as Georgia’s 3-4-5 hitters — including Aaron Schunk and LJ Talley went 23-of-41 for the weekend. “It’s huge,” Cable said of Georgia’s hot bats. “Our pitching has been carrying us so to have that going is big for us. The past two weeks we’ve had really good at-bats and put up a lot of runs. The bats are rolling right now and we’ve got to keep them going.” To be clear, pitching and defense remain the foundation on which this Georgia team is built. The Bulldogs enter with their rotation intact as Tim Elliot (6-3, 2.93 ERA), the regular mid-week starter, will get the ball against the Aggies. He’ll be backed up by the best defense in Georgia history. In league play, the starting infield of Patrick Sullivan, L.J. Talley, Cam Shepherd and Aaron Schunk, have made four errors all season. Shepherd, the shortstop, has made none. That’s right — zero. Shepherd was error-free in 30 SEC games in a total of 109 chances. For the year, he’s fielding .990 with just two errors in 206 total chances. Up the middle, between catcher Mason Meadows, Shepherd and Talley and center field Tucker Maxwell, the Bulldogs have made a collective 7 errors all season. Put that defense behind the pitching rotation Georgia is throwing at opponents this season, and you’ve got winning formula. Led by first-team All-SEC designee Emerson Hancock (8-2, 1.31 ERA), the Bulldogs lead the SEC in opposing batting average (.196) — the closest to them is Missouri at .220 — and they are second in team ERA (3.17), saves (18) and wins (42). Add the hot bats and the Bulldogs’ confidence heading to Hoover is understandable. “It gives your pitchers a lot more confidence when they know they have that cushion and also the best defense in Georgia history behind them,” Stricklin said. “Our infield defense has been unbelievable.” Said Cable: “We want to keep the momentum because this tournament leads into the regional. We’re on a hot streak, playing well, and I think we’re going to go in there and play well. It’d be nice to win it and put it on the wall (at Foley Field).” The post VIDEO: No. 5 Georgia Bulldogs take hot bats to Hoover, face Texas A&M in SEC Tourney appeared first on DawgNation.
  • Georgia football is the No. 1 topic every day on DawgNation Daily — the daily podcast for Georgia Bulldogs fans. Catch up on everything happening with UGA athletics with host Brandon Adams and the DawgNation experts as they break down the latest Georgia football recruiting news and discuss coach Kirby Smart’s quest to return the Bulldogs to the top of the SEC. On episode No. 950 (May 21, 2019) of the podcast, Georgia fans can hear a discussion about how 4-star defensive tackle Jalen Carter’s commitment addresses UGA fans’ concerns about the program’s defensive line recruiting. Georgia football podcast: UGA appears to address a fan concern in emphatic fashion Beginning of the show: Georgia hasn’t recruited well enough on its defensive line according to many UGA fans. I’ll discuss on today’s show how 4-star defensive tackle Jalen Carter’s commitment potentially calms those concerns. 10-minute mark: I share audio from UGA coach Kirby Smart’s appearance at a fan gathering in Macon, Ga and invite DawgNation Daily listeners and viewers to register for a chance to win a VIP stay at Callaway Resort and Gardens for DawgNation Days of Summer. 15-minute mark: DawgNation’s recruiting insider Jeff Sentell joins the show. Some of the topics covered include… Jeff’s thoughts on Carter Reaction to 4-star offensive lineman Justin Rogers’ Kentucky commitment The latest on 5-star offensive tackle Paris Johnson 4-star defensive end Jacolbe Cowan’s intriguing description of his conversations with 5-star recruits, Kendall Milton and Kelee Ringo And a look at UGA’s so-called “scavenger hunt” 35-minute mark: I take a look at CBS’ ranking of SEC teams’ schedule strength. 40-minute mark: I share the latest edition of our Summer Q&A. End of show: I share the Gator Hater Updater. NOTE: If you’d like to share your answers to the Summer Q&A you can enter your responses in the comment section below or reach out to BA on Twitter @DawgNationDaily. The post Georgia football podcast: UGA appears to address a fan concern in emphatic fashion appeared first on DawgNation.
  • The Georgia Bulldogs signed the No. 2 overall recruiting class for the 2019 recruiting cycle. It landed a total of five 5-star prospects, including the No. 1 prospect in the 247Sports Composite rankings in Nolan Smith. That’s before even mentioning a player like incoming wide receiver Dominick Blaylock. But none of the 20 freshman members of the class were selected to ESPN’s instant impact team. Put together by Tom Luginbill, the list highlights some of the top incoming freshmen who have a chance to make meaningful contributions right away. Some of the players named include LSU running back John Emery Jr. and Auburn quarterback Bo Nix. But there was not a player from Georgia’s class named. Interestingly, there was also not an Alabama player named in the class as well. The Crimson Tide signed the No. 1 overall class in the country for the 2019 cycle. Texas, which had the No. 3 class also did not have a player named. Saying all that though, there’s a very good chance that a number of freshmen play a meaningful role for the Bulldogs. Smith — along with inside linebacker Nakobe Dean —really stood out this spring for the Bulldogs. Related:  The national media is making a big mistake by sleeping on Nolan Smith And given the needs Georgia has at wide receiver, it should not come as a surprise to see either Blaylock or 5-star wide receiver George Pickens play a big role early. Georgia coach Kirby Smart has also mentioned Blaylock working heavily on special teams. “We think Dom can play all three spots, slot and both outside,”  Smart said. “He’s very bright and intelligent. He picks up things well. We think he’s going to help in the return game, too. But it’s not like we’re sitting there going, ‘He’s a slot receiver.’ We think he can play all of them.” Related:  Kirby Smart says all Georgia Bulldogs, incoming and otherwise, have made the grades to play Georgia has also seen a number of players who weren’t thought to be early impact players make significant contributions in their first year. This time a year ago, no one was saying much of anything about defensive lineman Jordan Davis. Now he’s a key member of the Georgia defense. And most thought that Jake Fromm would end up being the backup to Jacob Eason in his freshman season. Fromm went on to win the SEC and lead Georgia to an appearance in the national title game. Georgia and its talented pack of freshmen begin the 2019 season on Aug. 31 when the Bulldogs visit Vanderbilt. Best Georgia football stories from around DawgNation Meet 6-foot-6 Josh Braun: Brains, rhinos, swing dancing, tennis and a mauler’s mindset Fire and ice: Incoming Miami transfer compares Kirby Smart to Mark Richt VIDEO: Kirby Smart, Tom Crean update fans on Georgia Bulldogs during ‘Coaches Caravan’ Why commitment of 4-star DT Jalen Carter is a big win for Georgia football Kirby Smart expects QB Jake Fromm to have more ‘offensive input’ in 2019 Update on injury status of UGA running back Zamir White Nation’s No. 10 DT Jalen Carter has made his college decision     The post ESPN snubs Georgia freshmen on instant impact list appeared first on DawgNation.