FBI releases new sketch in hunt for man who kidnapped Cal Ripken’s mother

It has been more than five years since Vi Ripken, matriarch of Maryland’s most famous baseball family, was abducted from her home and returned safely a day later.
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Authorities never made an arrest in the case, but they have renewed efforts to track down the man responsible for the crime by releasing an updated sketch of what he may look like now. Aberdeen Police and the FBI on Wednesday publicized a new composite of the suspect alongside the previous one released shortly after the kidnapping.

The 32-year-old right-hander made his MLB debut with the Padres in 2009, but the Mariners are now his sixth organization. He had 37 saves for the Angels in 2013 and is 11-14 with 73 saves and a 3.59 ERA over his career.

After spending 2016 away from baseball, Frieri signed a minor-league deal with the Yankees after pitching for his native Colombia in the 2017 World Baseball Classic. After opting out of his contract with the Yankees, he signed with the Rangers in June.

Frieri is 2-1 with a 2.63 ERA in 27 1/3 innings between the Yankees and Rangers Triple-A clubs.

It’s not uncommon for teams to deal a veteran player in the minors for a dollar just to give him another opportunity with a different MLB club.

Game Javier Baez Jersey The Mariners will have Frieri start at Triple-A Tacoma.

There have been reports the Mets are interested in picking up Cabrera’s $8 million club option for 2018 because they’re pleased with the way he has played third base. Cabrera’s trade demand earlier in the season could complicate matters: He was openly displeased with the way the Mets wouldn’t commit to picking up that option.

Cleveland’s secondary also came into 2017 in need of an overhaul.

The rest of the group isn’t as notable. Christian Kirksey is a solid and consistent player. An extension signed this spring suggests the Browns expect him to take on a bigger leadership role in 2017 and beyond. The team’s inside linebacker starters will be solid, but after them Cleveland will be forced to turn to players like Joe Schobert, Dominique Alexander, and Tank Carder. That’s not a very intimidating group, especially when it comes to rushing the passer; the Browns’ linebackers combined for just 11.5 sacks in 2016.

Cleveland’s secondary also came into 2017 in need of an overhaul. The Browns ranked 21st in the league after allowing nearly 250 passing yards per game. That middling number looks even worse when you consider how often opponents with a sizable lead would turn to the run in order to grind time from the clock. They also allowed opposing quarterbacks to post a 101.8 rating — a mark slightly higher than Drew Brees’ season total.

You see Josh eventually make friends, thanks to his basketball-playing dog, and go through the awkwardness of being a teenager. You see a widowed mother fall in love and get married to someone new and then try to make things work for her family (which she does). You see the Framm siblings embrace each other when Josh has to leave for college, and Andrea isn’t ready to say goodbye. You see Andrea try her hardest to earn travel money so she can see her best friend who moved to a different state.

You see Noah, the youngest Framm sibling, grow up into a toddler and steal the spotlight, because he’s genuinely the funniest human character Air Bud had to offer.

That’s something he hasn’t had a problem doing for more than a decade.

Hali, 33, played in all 16 of the Chiefs’ games last season, but he only started two of them. That was a big change from the previous season, when he played in 15 games and started all but two. He had just 34 tackles, a career low, and his 3.5 sacks were the second-worst numbers of his career.

On Saturday, Hali pointed out his low snap counts in two losses against the Steelers last season.

Fans should know this. only played 7 snaps last year 2017 playoff game against the Steelers.

That’s something he hasn’t had a problem doing for more than a decade.

If he does continue his prolific play, Brees has a strong chance at finishing his career as the NFL’s all-time king in passing yardage and passing touchdowns. Both coveted records are held by Peyton Manning but are well within Brees’ reach.

The question is whether Brees will be able to keep that pace as he approaches 40.

Brett Favre, Warren Moon, and Vinny Testaverde are the only quarterbacks to ever start more than eight games after turning 40. Tom Brady will presumably be the fourth with his 40th birthday falling in the first week of August.

But for most NFL passers, the late 30s bring sharp drop-offs and the end of the road. Peyton Manning set the all-time mark in passing yards in 2015, but he had quickly become a shell of his former self at age 39.
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After Coughlin was forced out the door, Reese suddenly had the target painted on his back. The GM went into the 2016 offseason seemingly on the hot seat, and decided to invest on defense. Olivier Vernon (five years, $85 million), Janoris Jenkins (five years, $62.5 million), and Damon Harrison (five years, $46.250 million) were among the biggest free agent signings that spring, all in an attempt to improve the defense.
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Las Vegas already predicts Penguins to win 2018 Stanley Cup

Can the Penguins pull off a Stanley Cup three-peat? The Westgate SuperBook in Las Vegas thinks so.

The betting agency has tabbed the Penguins to win the 2018 title with 8-1 odds, ESPN.com reported. If the Penguins are able to pull off the feat, they will be the first team in 34 years to win three Stanley Cup championships in a row.
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The Predators, who were beaten by the Penguins in the final series in six games, have 14-1 odds, but are still behind the Lightning, Capitals and Oilers (10-1 odds) followed by the Blackhawks (12-1 odds).

The NHL’s newest expansion team, the Las Vegas Golden Knights, come in last with a 200-1 chance of winning the Cup.

The Penguins are the first repeat Stanley Cup winner since the Red Wings won in 1997 and 1998. If Pittsburgh is able to win three in a row next season, it will be the first team to pull off the feat since the Islanders won four in a row from 1980-84.
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As one of the best under-30 UFA centers available, Bonino was going to get paid. But like any complementary player who departs his all-world teammates to take on a larger role, he’ll have questions to answer. Bonino was a strong playoff performer playing mostly bottom-six minutes for the Penguins. As presently constructed, the Predators likely will cast Bonino as their second-line center. He’s three years removed from his only 40-point season and will turn 33 by the time the deal expires, so that $4.1 million cap hit could become a thorn in David Poile’s side before long.

Selling low on Colin Wilson, who at 27 was younger than Bonino and about as productive, for a fourth-round draft pick, then using a third-rounder in 2019 to acquire Alexei Emelin, only added to a strange valuation of assets. If this is all part of Poile’s big-picture Matt Duchene plan, we reserve the right to alter this mark.

Karl-Anthony Towns verbally assaults rim after unfavorable bounce

Karl-Anthony Towns had a great game Sunday night against the Nuggets, but he was still upset over an altercation with the rim.

In the third quarter, Towns took a close-range shot while getting fouled and gazed upon the ball as he hoped for it to roll in. He kept watching, and then saw it fall to the court, without going through the hoop. He was upset, to say the least.

If you can read lips then you know what he said to the rim wasn’t very nice.

Perhaps the rim felt bad after Towns’ abuse, so it decided to let him have a monster game. Towns finished with 32 points, 12 rebounds, seven assists and four blocks.

Game Womens Quintin Demps Jersey The team has long sought a big-time name to lure to L.A. and struck out on LaMarcus Aldridge, Carmelo Anthony and Dwight Howard in free agency. But the buzzword now is patience. The Lakers’ ability to pursue free agents in the last few years was hindered by the presence of Bryant because potential signees knew that Bryant’s injury-addled, end-of-career seasons were going to be a struggle.

Bryant’s gone now, so the hope is that free agents can look afresh at the Lakers now with a rebuilt core of young players and Walton, who also is making his mark as a coach well-liked by players and respected despite his own youth (36). That will be the approach going forward.
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It might not come immediately, but the Lakers have pulled themselves off the immediate-gratification carousel. They’re opting for patience. They’ve got three young players 鈥?three of the best young talents in the league 鈥?worthy of it.

Dale Earnhardt Jr. could contribute to NBC’s NFL coverage, report says

When Dale Earnhardt Jr.’s NASCAR Monster Energy Cup Series racing career ends at the conclusion of the 2017 season, he’ll head to a media role — a move many expected.

Few, on the other hand, have imagined Earnhardt becoming part of NBC’s NFL coverage.

Sports Business Daily reported Monday that NASCAR’s most popular driver has signed a multiyear on-air deal with NBCUniversal, effective beginning in January. Included in SBD’s report: “It is possible that Earnhardt, a noted Redskins fan, could be worked into the (network’s) NFL or even Olympics coverage.”

A federal judge blocked part of President Trump’s immigration order Saturday night, ordering that refugees detained at U.S. airports not be returned to their home countries. Yet the ruling did not allow them to enter the U.S., either.

Two active NBA players, Los Angeles Lakers veteran Luol Deng and Milwaukee Bucks rookie Thon Maker, originally hail from what is now South Sudan, which is not on the list of affected countries. However, they were born in Sudan. There has been some concern about possible problems wtih Deng or Maker, for example, returning from a trip to play the Raptors in Canada.

Maker’s family fled his home country when he was 5. He lived in Australia as a youth, is an Australian citizen and holds a passport from that country. Deng’s family fled the Sudanese civil war for Egypt when he was 5, and he has lived in the U.S. for 17 years.

Beyond those two players, the NBA is also eyeing several Sudanese players attending U.S. high schools or colleges who might one day play in the league.

“The NBA is a global league and we are proud to attract the very best players from around the world,” Bass told The Vertical .t_rangers_001-115x115

Celtics downplay capturing East’s top seed (but it matters)

The Celtics insisted that there was no celebration Sunday night, after a win over Miami moved Boston into a tie for the top seed in the Eastern Conference.

Mostly (we celebrated) the win, it was a big game for us, forward Jae Crowder said. We knew those guys would come in and play hard. Pretty much celebrating the win more than the seeding.

Mark Duper Womens Jersey Surely, they watched Monday night as the Cavaliers were picked apart by the Spurs, which pushed the Celtics into the top seed in the East. But even that was unlikely to move Boston off its professed lack of concern about postseason seeding.
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We hear it, but that wasn’t our focus, guard Marcus Smart said. Our focus was to come in and get another game, get that momentum going before we start the playoffs.

I did not have a beef with LeBron. He had a beef with me, Barkley said during a press conference previewing Turner/CBS Sports’ coverage of the NCAA Tournament.

The public donnybrook between the reigning NBA champion and league’s top TV analyst started when Barkley said on TNT’s Inside the NBA that the 32-year old James was acting whiny and inappropriate by demanding Cavaliers owner Dan Gilbert upgrade the roster for another run at a title.

There’s a chance he misses the rest of the season including the playoffs, Sherman added.

With the tweaks to the Warriors’ odds, the prices on other Western Conference contenders moved in the other direction. The Spurs, currently the No. 2 seed in the conference, were adjusted from 8/1 to 7/1. The Rockets moved from 25/1 to 20/1, the Clippers from 30/1 to 20/1, and the Jazz from 80/1 to 50/1.

They followed a seven-game winning streak in late January and early February with a six-game losing streak

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Before the season began, the Pacers looked to be about a .500 team. With three weeks to go in the season, they’re a game above .500. This is just what they are, and perhaps will remain for the foreseeable future.

They followed a seven-game winning streak in late January and early February with a six-game losing streak, and in their 14 games since the All-Star break, they’re a flat 7-7. They can score enough, especially at home where they are 25-10, to beat bad-to-mediocre teams, but they don’t defend enough to win tough games. They’re 2-9 against the East’s Top 4, their potential first-round playoff foes. Their last such win came on December 19.
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The one question about Williams’ fit in Houston revolves around his defense. Williams has never been known as a good defender, and the Rockets are in the middle of the pack this season in defensive efficiency. They’d benefit from having another wing defender going into the playoffs, but it’s just as important they acquired someone who can take some of the load off Harden’s shoulders. It’s not like the Rockets were relying as much on Brewer’s defense at this stage of his career, either.

If they were, Williams’ shortcomings would be a far bigger deal.

Hassan Whiteside had a monster game while helping the Heat to a 113-95 home win over the Pacers. Whiteside scored 22 points with 17 rebounds. Dion Waiters added 22 points and Goran Dragic had 21 points and four assists.

Bulls guard Dwyane Wade flirted with a triple-double by scoring 20 points with 10 assists and nine rebounds in a 117-99 win over the Cavaliers with LeBron James (illness) and Kevin Love (knee) out of the game. Chicago’s Jimmy Butler did complete a triple-double with 18 points, 10 rebounds and 10 assists.

Dwyane Wade to have MRI exam on injured right elbow

Bulls guard Dwyane Wade will undergo an MRI exam Thursday after leaving Wednesday’s 98-91 loss to the Grizzlies with a sprained right elbow.

I knew it was something a little bit more just because of what I heard, Wade told reporters after the game (via NBA Australia). I tried to play through it a little bit until the pain started getting a little bit more excruciating.

Game Kids John Hannah Jersey So, with the Pacers’ turnover Wednesday night, they recorded their 13th backcourt violation of the season, setting an embarassing NBA record. It should be mentioned that these stats only go back 21 years, so it’s possible a team had more prior to when people kept track of this information.

A few backcourt violations in a season is understandable. Maybe you make a pass that your teammate wasn’t looking for, or you don’t pay attention to where your feet are on the court. It happens. But setting the NBA record for it points to a larger issue.

Duron Harmon Game Jersey There’s still a chance the Bulls can tie the Pacers’ record, or Indiana could just keep committing silly turnovers.

Those Paul George talks are progressing quickly. ESPN’s Brian Windhorst says on SportsCenter some NBA executives do expect George to be traded. Rival teams have also told ESPN’s Marc Stein the Celtics do have a realistic shot at acquiring George before the deadline. But before Boston fans get too excited, The Vertical’s Adrian Wojnarowski says there hasn’t been significant traction for potential deals involving George or Bulls star Jimmy Butler. This could go right up to the finish line.

Nerlens Noel was pulled from practice after learning he had been traded to the Mavericks. Joel Embiid made sure Noel knew he was appreciated on his way out.

Gordon Hayward cares not for Giannis Antetokounmpo, dunks all over him

The Bucks have a player named Giannis Antetokounmpo. You may have heard of him. He has really long arms and is really good at playing basketball.

Gordon Hayward doesn’t care. Gordon Hayward does what he wants.

While Antetokounmpo is the one who has dazzled with some great rim-rockers this season, the Jazz forward Hayward decided to put Antetokounmpo on a poster of his own.

The best part of the video is probably Hayward pulling a Derek Zoolander and delivering the icy, Blue Steel gaze at Antetokounmpo after the finish.

The Jazz and Hayward are becoming an increasingly fun team to watch, and that dunk helped secure a 109-95 Utah victory over Milwaukee.

The closest we’ve come to seeing Durant in that role was during his MVP season when he went through a 26-game stretch without Westbrook. His numbers in those games: 35.0 points, 7.5 rebounds and 6.3 assists per game on 52.7 percent shooting from the field and 39.9 percent from the 3-point line. To put it into perspective how ridiculous that is, the only player in NBA history who has averaged 30.0 points, 7.0 rebounds and 6.0 assists while shooting 50 percent from the field over the course of a season is Michael Jordan.

It isn’t crazy to think Durant would’ve joined Jordan as the only players to put up those numbers if he was in the same situation as Harden. It’s not the triple-double Westbrook and James would likely average, but it’s equally as impressive.
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