m pay. Josh Harrison had a tiebreaking, two-out

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PITTSBURGH -- The Nationals stuck with their ace. NFL Jerseys China Wholesale . The Pirates made them pay. Josh Harrison had a tiebreaking, two-out single two batters after Jose Tabata hit a sacrifice
fly off of Stephen Strasburg in the seventh inning, and Pittsburgh handed
Washington its fourth straight defeat, 3-2 Saturday night. Strasburg, who struck
out 14 in a memorable major league debut against the Pirates almost four years
ago, did not allow a hit Saturday until Walkers homer to centre with one out in
the fourth. Pittsburgh managed just three more singles off Strasburg until the
seventh, when Russell Martin led off with a single and went to third on a
one-out double by Starling Marte before scoring on the sacrifice fly by
pinch-hitter Tabata. "(Strasburg) pitched very well," Washington manager Matt
Williams said. "Of course, they got to him in that last inning but I want to
give him a chance to get out of there with a tie game. He was still strong. Hes
our ace, hes deserves a chance to get out of it and it didnt work out."
Gerrit Cole left after six innings trailing by a run while facing Strasburg in
the first matchup in the NL of No. 1 overall draft picks in nine years. Cole --
the top pick of the 2011 draft, two years after Strasburg went first -- allowed
two runs on five hits with seven strikeouts. Strasburg (3-4) allowed three runs
on seven hits with seven strikeouts in seven innings. Strasburg insisted he
wasnt losing his stuff as he crossed the 100-pitch plateau in the seventh. "My
command was still pretty good," he said. "I got a pitch in on Martin and he
dumped it into the outfield. I tried to pitch around a couple of guys. The pitch
that killed me was the hanging curveball to Marte. That really set up the inning
for them." Of the Harrison at-bat, Strasburg said: "Hes the type of hitter whos
going to put the ball in play and he put it in the right place." Harrison
followed pinch-hitter Travis Snider, whom the Nationals intentionally walked
after Strasburg fell behind 2-0. "I was pretty much telling myself, I feel like
Im seeing everything hes throwing," Harrison said of his seventh-inning at bat
against Stephen Strasburg. "I was just looking to barrel something up."
Neil Walker hit his 10th home run for the Pirates, who tied their season-best
winning streak of four. Jered Hughes (3-1), Jeanmar Gomez and Mark Melancon each
worked a perfect inning of relief for Pittsburgh. Melancon picked up his ninth
save when he finished the Pirates majors-best 14th one-run victory. Ian Desmond
hit his ninth homer for Washington (24-25), which has lost six of eight and fell
under .500 for the first time this season. "Its tough -- were all trying very
hard, trying to get back on track," Strasburg said. "I do think weve probably
reached the point where were trying too hard and need to take a step back and
let the game come to us." The bullpen backed up Cole, who allowed 10 baserunners
and threw 112 pitches in six innings, retiring the side in order only once.
Still, Pittsburgh won for the fourth time in five May starts by Cole.
Wilson Ramos sawed-off, bloop single in the sixth scored Anthony Rendon to give
the Nationals a 2-1 lead. Greg Dobbs went 2 for 4 for the Nationals. NOTES: The
Mets Kris Benson (the No. 1 pick of the 1996 draft) faced Cincinnatis
Paul Wilson (No. 1 overall in 1994) on May 16, 2005 -- the most recent
occurrence of top picks facing each other in the NL. It happened in the American
League two years ago (Kansas Citys Luke Hochevar vs. Tampa Bays David Price on
Aug. 21, 2012). . 1B Adam LaRoche joined the Nationals in Pittsburgh and will be
activated for Sundays game. Infielder Zach Walters was optioned to Triple-A
Syracuse after Saturdays game to make room for LaRoche, who has been on the
disabled list since May 10 because of a right quad strain. ... SS Desmonds homer
gives the Nationals 17 this season from their middle infielders, most in the
majors. . The four-game series wraps up Sunday when Washington RHP Doug Fister
(1-1, 3.93) faces Pirates LHP Francisco Liriano (0-4, 4.86). Despite his record,
Pittsburgh has won five of Lirianos past six starts. NFL Jerseys Authentic Cheap . Viewers in the Canadiens region can watch the game on TSN at 7:30pm et/4:30pm pt and listen on TSN 690. The Canadiens have
won three in a row and four of their last five games and recently put the
finishing touches on a 3-1-0 road trip. NFL Jerseys From China . 3 Ohio State. Amedeo Della Valle had 15 points, Marc Loving scored a career-high 13 and the bench provided 38 points as
the Buckeyes sprinted past Nebraska 84-53 on Saturday.Saturday had a weird feel
about it for Toronto FC at BMO Field. One would think advancing in the Amway
Canadian Championship on Wednesday would have left some positive residue in the
atmosphere. Team-wise, there was momentum contributing to the positive result, a
2-0 win over one of Major League Soccers glamour clubs, the New York Red Bulls.
The energy, or lack thereof around the stadium had another feel entirely.  We
shall call it the remnants of a history of failure. Some level of
disillusionment, distrust, and negativity still float around to a certain
degree. A new culture isnt created overnight. And thus, a change in perception
is as much a work in progress as the team on the field Three straight league
losses heading in, Michael Bradley away on World Cup duty, and an unpopular
trade amongst some Toronto FC supporters made for awkwardness. There was tension
throughout an unusually quiet crowd, somewhat predictable considering possession
stats heavily favouring the visitors while the prospects of another dreaded late
goal conceded lingered. The heartbreaking goal against didnt come. Contrary to
usual script, it was the Red Bulls Bradley Wright-Phillips with all the wrong
moves, missing an absolute wide-open sitter. Simply a brutal miss by MLS top
goal scorer. Despite waves of pressure, the Red Bulls put only one shot on
target, a testament to Toronto FCs stout defensive structure and blue-collar
effort. The commitment shown by the Reds is something to rally around, isnt it?
Ill take this work in progress over anything weve seen before at BMO, thank you
very much.  Four wins through eight matches should be entirely pleasing. The MLS
standings are misleading with Toronto FC sitting 7th but playing a league-low
eight games thus far. Its the 1.5 points earned per game that tells a more
positive tale; tied for the third best rate in the Eastern Conference. Progress.
There will be no convincing a fan base to fully commit to a product without
reason for true conviction. Apprehension cannot simply be whisked away. The
negative response to Issey Nakajima-Farran being traded to the Montreal Impact
Friday (on his birthday) came as a surprise. Issey did fine as a member of
Toronto FC. But the trade for Collen Warner is not a negative move for
footballing reasons. Its the perception Issey was hard-done-by, with he and his
agent reportedly not told of the deal beforehand, leading to the player taking
to Twitter to call the move "#Inhumane". Perhaps my definition of Inhumane is
entirely different. Its this kind of nonsense, the petty name-calling and lack
of communication that can easily be resolved and need be remedied. Issey is a
fine player, but lacked the defensive team play/awareness demanded by the
manager. Issey could have remained a squad player in Toronto, and that would
have been fine. Acquiring a player in Warner who can fill a specific role as a
defensive midfielder is preferable. The wing positions still need upgrading.
That would have remained on the to-do list even if Issey were not moved. The
entire deal was blown out of proportion based on perception rather than anything
tangible about team direction. So what is Toronto FCs team identity? Although it
continues to be asked in the press box and through the rafters, through eight
games it seems abundantly clear: a team difficult to break down defensively and
one reliant upon the counter-attack. Those looking for expansive,
attack-oriented football will remain disappointed for the time being. Thats not
happening with this squad as currently constructed. Spare me style points, the
2-0 win was trademark Toronto FC. Here are my five thoughts: 1) The Defoe Effect
- Jermain Defoe remains emotional about his exclusion from the 23-man England
World Cup squad. Its a tough spot for Jermain. The questions asked about his
decision to join MLS playing a role in his exclusion are completely unfair. He
was never going to be picked not playing regular minutes at Tottenham either.
Defoe was excluded because Roy Hodgson decided to name only four strikers and a
glut of attacking midfielders. Is Defoe worthy of selection over Wayne Rooney,
Danny Welbeck, Daniel Sturridge or Ricky Lambert? No chance. Thats no disrespect
to Jermain. From the sounds of it, the lumbering Andy Carroll is the preferred
striker on standby too, putting Defoe sixth in the pecking order. Its
understandable why Ryan Nelsen warned post-match, "... England will miss him
dearly, I think, come World Cup time." Defoes 12th-minute goal was a thing of
beauty: an unstoppable strike after finding space behind the Red Bulls backline
(which he did all afternoon). Defoe took one touch before unleashing a shot of
the highest quality, top corner. Unstoppable. The power and placement top class,
decisive and clinical. Its the type of finish that separates him from most in
MLS. Defoe makes Toronto FC a constant danger as long as hes on the field, no
matter how the team plays behind him. Make it four goals in just five games for
Defoe, while no other TFC player has scored more than once. 2) Moore is More –
New Toronto FC striker Luke Moore loves BMO Field. The Englishman sscored a hat
trick against TFC in a 2007 summer friendly while at Aston Villa. NFL Cheap Jerseys China. Moore made it two-for-two in games scoring goals at BMO after coming on as a second half substitute in his home debut. Moore
capitalized on goalkeeper Luis Robles and defender Chris Duvall colliding,
making for an easy tap-in time added on to guarantee the three points. It was a
productive 40 minutes of action for Moore, doing well holding up the ball. It
must be questioned whether Moore is a preferable option short-term over
misfiring Gilberto. The Brazilian missed another clear-cut goal scoring
opportunity in the 19th minute. The ball fell to Gilberto on the back post, open
inside the six-yard box. Instead of getting his body behind the ball and guiding
it into the back of the net, Gilberto lunged and stabbed, with the ball bouncing
awkwardly out of play for a goal kick. He has to capitalize on these kinds of
chances. Missing sitters as such brings back ugly memories of Chad Barrett or
Jeff Cunningham, but even worse because Gilberto is a designated player. The
designation matters in our evaluation. Matias Laba was sacrificed by TFC to
bring in another goal scorer. Laba could have made for an ideal centre-midfield
partner with Bradley. I still stand by the reasoning behind the move for
Gilberto – TFC needs goal scorers to compliment Defoe. Can Gilberto be that guy?
Its still far too early to make any grandiose proclamation. Thus far Gilberto
has let down the faith of his general manager and head coach. More is required,
or Nelsen should just roll with Moore for the time being. 3) Orr is More –
Bradley Orr has become Mr. Utility for Toronto FC. He has played four positions
for the club, and as he puts it, is trying to be a good "squad player". There
will always be a fit for a player like Orr, who was an absolute asset Saturday
reading the play and helping out his backline. Orr rarely got forward from his
central midfield position, and when he did he assisted on Defoes opener. Orr
dropped deeper as the game wore on, basically sitting on top of Steven Caldwell
and Nick Hagglund. He was like another defender, in position for help and
support. Despite his standout performance, Orr is not suited to play the
position full-time. His distribution isnt good enough for the holding role. This
is the position Nelsen envisions for Warner. Your guess is as good as mine where
Orr will land in his merry-go-round of positions. Nelsen seems ecstatic with
Mark Bloom at right-back, Orrs natural position. So Orr will have to remain
patient for his chances and continue to be that good squad player. Hes an asset
Toronto FC will continue to call upon. 4) Hagglund over Henry – The rookie out
of Xavier has given plenty for his head coach to think about. Hagglund was
preferred Saturday ahead of Doneil Henry at centre-back. Diving in for
challenges and a lack of discipline have plagued Henry in recent weeks. Nelsen
needs a more reliable, steady Henry to play alongside Caldwell. Credit Hagglund,
who took full advantage of the opportunity. After some early jitters giving away
possession twice cheaply in the opening minutes, Hagglund settled and his
confidence grew as the match wore on, making better clearances and in control as
the Red Bulls pressed. Its hard not envisioning Henry as the regular starting
centre-back partner for Caldwell for the foreseeable future. Perhaps its best to
have Henry watch a few more games from the sidelines, focusing on his defending
tendencies in training, and not forced into game action until hes corrected his
issues, namely staying on his feet and finding better defensive positioning on
one-on-one defending. Hagglund is a serviceable option for the time being and
beyond. 5) On the Defensive – The 12th-minute goal was a blessing and a curse
for Toronto FC. Playing with an early lead allowed TFC to fall back defensively
for the duration, taking few chances and allowing the Red Bulls to dictate the
flow of the game. Parking the bus wouldnt be the best way to describe it, but
its not far off. The defensive shell and rotation by the fullbacks in support
has been phenomenal, reflective in conceding just nine through eight games.
Playing such a defensive game comes with risk. Sitting back far too much has
cost Toronto FC conceding late in matches against Colorado, New England, and
Dallas. The commitment remains high but there isnt enough of a concerted effort
to get forward, attack, and find that all-important second goal. New York
maintained 59 per cent of possession; a terrible number for TFC playing at home.
Better ball retention and consistent build up is a necessity as the season wears
on. This also has everything to do with getting Defoe involved as much as
possible. The ability thus far to grind out results has revealed all kinds of
character in the team. But its a fallacy to expect this kind of play will bring
similar results over the long-term.  Toronto FC pays a visit to reigning MLS Cup
Champion Sporting Kansas City Friday night at 8:30pm et/5:30pm pt. (TSN/TSN 1050
Radio). Gareth Wheeler can be reached on Twitter:
@[email protected] Wholesale Jerseys China ' ' ' 
Posted 14 Nov 2016

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Posted 03 May 2018

Posted 28 Sep 2018

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