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Jan 2019
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#1 Houston Texans Jersey
FORT MYERS , Fla. (AP) — Miguel Sano walked into the Minnesota Twins‘ clubhouse just before 8 a.m., looking trimmed down in rainbow sneakers and a black sweat suit.“You look good,” said catcher Jason Castro, a sentiment echoed by teammates between hugs and handshakes with the 25-year-old slugger.A slimmer Sano is a promising sign for Minnesota. He struggled with his weight last season following offseason surgery on his left shin and was demoted to Class A Fort Myers in mid-June after hitting .203 over 37 games. He finished the year at .199 with 13 homers in 71 games.“I worked really hard and I’ve been doing a lot of yoga and a lot of agility stuff and a lot of lifting, so I feel a lot different from last year,” Sano said. “I feel like this year can be a lot different for everybody.”One of Sano’s first stops Sunday was expected to be the trainer’s room. He arrived to camp with a cut on his lower right leg that he suffered near the end of the Dominican winter ball season.“Otherwise, besides that, he looks great,” Twins rookie manager Rocco Baldelli said. “As good or better as we could have hoped coming into camp.”Sano started offseason workouts in late October, changing up his diet and his attitude after the worst season of his pro career. Many of his exercises were football-inspired, with an emphasis on flexibility. He also brought on his sister as a nutritionist — she also plans to live with him in Minnesota this season. He wasn’t sure exactly how much weight he’d lost Jonathan Schoop Jersey , but expected it was enough to make a difference on the field.“New year, 2019, everything’s in the past,” he said. “The new Miguel Sano. We’ve got a great team. We look at the positive stuff. The negative we leave in the past.”In 2017, Sano was one of the AL’s big sluggers. He made his first All-Star team and finished with a .264 average, 28 home runs and 77 RBIs in 114 games. That came after hitting 25 homers in 2016 and 18 as a rookie in ’15, which earned him third in the AL’s rookie of the year voting.“He looks good,” said new teammate Nelson Cruz, who also reported Sunday. The power hitter signed a $14.3-million, one-year free agent deal that comes with a $12-millon club option, leaving Seattle after four years during the offseason.The Twins are hoping the pair can add some pop to a lineup that finished 12th in the AL in homers last season.The 38-year-old Cruz has been one of the game’s top power hitters the past five seasons , belting at least 37 homers each year.“We talked a lot,” Cruz said of Sano. “He wanted to get me here.”Cruz expects to spend time chatting with Sano during the season.“Definitely. We’re 24-7 baseball, so, definitely, we’ll talk about the situation of the game, not only him but the coaches, too,” he said. “We’re here to learn, myself, too.”NOTES: Twins former stars Rod Carew and Tony Oliva were in the clubhouse. … Full-squad workouts begin Monday morning. SAN FRANCISCO — One of baseball’s best collections of young hitters goes head-to-head with one of the National League’s best young starting pitchers when the Atlanta Braves and San Francisco Giants begin a three-game series Monday night.The Braves flew into San Francisco on Sunday night on a high, having rallied for six runs in the top of the ninth inning to beat Arizona 9-5 and take three of four in a battle of playoff hopefuls.The win allowed Atlanta (79-64) to move 4 1/2 games ahead of Philadelphia (74-68) in the National League East. Those two still have seven head-to-head meetings remaining.Article continues below ...While the Braves continue a seven-game trip with three in San Francisco Darren O'Day Jersey , the Phillies will be hosting the Washington Nationals for three games.Thanks in large part to 20-year-olds Ronald Acuna Jr. and Ozzie Albies, the Braves will take the field Monday as the second-ranked team in the NL in scoring and batting average.They will be up against Giants 26-year-old Dereck Rodriguez (6-2, 2.41), who ranks fifth in the NL among all pitchers with 15 or more starts in ERA (2.41) and tied for sixth in winning percentage (6-2, .750).Like the Giants, who have lost eight in a row, Rodriguez has had a tough time getting wins of late. He has one loss and two no-decisions to show for his last three starts, during which he has given up just six runs and 14 hits in 17 innings against Texas, Arizona and Colorado.San Francisco’s losing streak is its longest since another eight-game skid in April 2015.Things were different in early May, when the Giants won three straight games at Atlanta. Brandon Crawford, Evan Longoria and Alen Hanson contributed home runs to the 9-4 , 11-2 and 4-3 victories.Rodriguez, a rookie, did not pitch in the series and has never faced the Braves.Left-hander Sean Newcomb (11-8, 3.92) is scheduled to oppose Rodriguez in the series opener. He also did not pitch in the games in Atlanta.The 25-year-old has struggled of late, getting roughed up for 35 hits and 21 runs in 23 2/3 innings in his last five starts. He’s 1-3 in those games and the Braves are 2-3.Newcomb has faced the Giants just once in his career, posting a no-decision in a 5-3 win last June in which he limited the Giants to one run and three hits for six innings.He will be seeing a Giants team this time around that suffered the unfortunate distinction of getting swept in Milwaukee despite out-hitting the Brewers in all three games. That hadn’t happened to the Giants since a 2009 series against San Diego.The Braves, meanwhile, have gone 4-0-2 in their last six road series.They managed to avoid splitting four at Arizona by virtue of their six-run ninth, which featured a go-ahead home run by Ender Inciarte and lead-padding homers by Lucas Duda and Johan Camargo.The home run by the 24-year-old Camargo was his 18th of the season, and Acuna earlier hit his 25th.The homers were the 78th and 79th of the season by Braves players 25-and-under. The Giants have 16.
04-14-2019 10:25 PM
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