San Francisco Sports News
Fresh off one of his worst performances of the season in the Warriors’ Game 2 loss to the Rockets, Klay Thompson made one thing clear after practice Saturday: Game 3 won’t be more of the same. "I’ll be better tomorrow," Thompson said. "I guarantee it." In 37 minutes of Wednesday’s 127-105 thumping by Houston in Game 2 of the Western Conference finals, Thompson totaled eight points on 3-for-11 shooting. It was his lowest-scoring outing of the playoffs and his worst since he mustered just seven points in a Jan. 27 win over Boston. Thompson conceded after the game that "I wasn’t running like I should be.
TORONTO — Oakland had loads to feel good about Sunday after wrapping up a strong road trip by sweeping four games from the Blue Jays. The joy was mitigated, however, by an injury to the A’s top power hitter. Khris Davis, who’s hit more homers than any other player since the start of the 2016 season, left Oakland’s 9-2 win at Toronto with a right groin strain. Groin strains typically require several weeks of recovery time. “I definitely had some sharp pain,” said Davis, who tweaked the muscle on a check swing in the fourth. “A lot of us kind of turned a corner on this road trip, took strides, but this is a little setback for me. I don’t think it’s as bad as it could be, but it’s still bad.
It’s hard to recall a less informative press conference than the one coach Steve Kerr held before Sunday night’s Game 3 of the Warriors-Houston series. It wasn’t Kerr’s fault; he was more than ready to speak at length. But perhaps we’ve reached the point where there’s nothing left to say — just play the game, already. With the interview room packed with writers both local and national, Kerr stepped to the podium at about 3:15 p.m. He got a question that was so impossibly vague, he could barely muster an answer. And then ... nothing. The room fell silent. “That was awesome,” said a smiling Kerr as he stood up and walked back to the locker room.
Who says the Giants can't develop outfielders? Their homegrown left fielder had quite a Sunday afternoon. Brandon Belt, who started in left field with right fielder Andrew McCutchen unavailable, got his first outfield assist in seven years before accomplishing what he really is paid to do. Belt broke a seventh-inning tie with a three-run homer against Rockies left-hander Jake McGee, Belt's fifth in the past seven games. Nick Hundley followed with his own homer and the Giants won 9-5 after trailing 4-1 to move within two games of first place in the National League West.
Jameis Winston The Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback offered his services as a high school graduation speaker as part of a Twitter contest, but forgot one important thing: While he asked for each interested school’s name, Winston didn’t request the time, date and place of the ceremony. Three schools in Florida’s Pasco County — Wiregrass Ranch, Mitchell and River Ridge — had the most students tweeting #JameisGradSpeaker, and Wiregrass Ranch won. “It turns out 4 p.m. May 24 didn’t work” for him, Pasco County school district spokeswoman Linda Cobbe said. So he won’t show up to speak to Wiregrass Ranch grads after all.
In the likely event rookie right tackle Mike McGlinchey eventually assumes Joe Staley’s position, it sounds as if he’ll be able to thank Staley for preparing him to fill his cleats. On Friday, after his first week of work with the 49ers’ veterans, McGlinchey, the ninth overall pick, raved about the 12th-year left tackle who is doubling as his primary mentor. The 49ers selected McGlinchey partly because Staley will turn 34 in August and has two years left on his contract. “He’s been awesome; Joe is the best,” McGlinchey said. “… What you see is what you get with Joe. There’s no B.S. There’s nothing behind the scenes. He’s a good person.
TORONTO — Emilio Pagán returned from Triple-A during Oakland’s series at Toronto throwing better than he had all of April. For one thing, his velocity is up 2 mph to 95-96 mph, according to pitching coach Scott Emerson, and as Emerson pointed out, that can make all the difference on a mistake pitch. But the main thing, Emerson and Pagán said Sunday, is that Pagán is emphasizing his strengths, especially his fastball up in the zone. Pagán used his fastball a season-high 86.2 percent of the time Saturday, and his slider — which he threw 36.7 percent of the time in his final outing before he was demoted May 2 — just 6.9 percent of the time.
TORONTO - Khris Davis, who leads the majors in homers since the start of the 2016 season, left Oakland’s game against the Blue Jays on Sunday after pulling up while running to first base in the fourth inning. The A’s announced that Davis has a right groin strain. Depending on the severity, groin strains typically take two or three weeks to as many as six weeks of recovery time, so Davis is likely to land on the disabled list. Should Davis miss much time, the A’s could put Jed Lowrie at DH and bring up top prospect Franklin Barreto to play second base, or the team could spread the DH at-bats around and make more liberal use of both Chad Pinder and Mark Canha, who are, like Davis, right-handed.
TORONTO - In the midst of the finale of a four-game series at the Rogers Centre, the A’s claimed a team from their opponent. Right-hander Carlos Ramirez, 27, was plucked from the waiver wire, but Oakland has not specified where the reliever will be assigned. Triple-A Nashville appears more than likely, with the Sounds’ bullpen thin after the A’s called up Josh Lucas and Emilio Pagán on Friday. Ramirez allowed one run and struck out three in 2 1/3 innings with Toronto before being designated for assignment May 13. He was 0-1 with one save and a 5.40 ERA at Triple-A Buffalo and struck out 10 in seven appearances.
Are you worried about Stephen Curry, grasshopper? No need. Take a deep, calming breath. And talk to the shooting sensei. “Steph may be the most suited in the world for this pressure,” Warriors assistant coach Bruce Fraser said. “I don’t know what it is. Zen? He has a beautiful perspective on the world. It’s the way his mind is. “Things like missed shots don’t bother him. He doesn’t look at those things as ‘I’m doomed.’” Curry is the team’s resident Buddhist — at least in demeanor — exuding tranquillity. Never too high or too low. Never different. He says that is “how I keep myself engaged.
A Bay Area rock anthem has again sparked to life. People are “Lookin’ out my back door,” as John Fogerty christened it, and, in many cases, can exclaim: “Look at all the happy creatures dancin’ on the lawn.” It’s spring for wildlife, and newborn critters and their families are surprising residents, with appearances in backyards across the region. Fogerty grew up in El Cerrito and developed into an impassioned outdoorsman and wildlife guy. John said he wrote “Lookin’ Out My Back Door” for his first son, Josh, and about the happy imagination of youth. Some heard the song for the first time in “The Big Lebowski.
What you’ll see: This easy trip features a pretty drive and five-minute walk to see the Methuselah Tree, a giant redwood. Go the extra mile and you’ll see the Tafoni — a one-of-a-kind sandstone monolith — and beyond to Vista Point. Or you can make it a challenge and explore the far reaches of the 2,817-acre preserve. It stretches from Skyline across redwoods and Douglas fir to the coastal foothills, with a few remote lookouts that provide views of the coast and ocean. Location: On Skyline on the north Peninsula The Tafoni: The Tafoni is a 50-foot sandstone tower with etched fretwork, holes and crevices.
ANAHEIM — Tampa Bay’s Sergio Romo made 588 appearances as a reliever before he made his first career start Saturday. Things went so well that he’ll try to repeat the feat Sunday. Romo struck out the side on 18 pitches in the first inning before departing the Rays’ 5-3 victory over the Los Angeles Angels on Saturday night. The success prompted manager Kevin Cash to announce that Romo will be on the mound in the first inning Sunday, too. “The way it worked out, Sergio is pumped,” Cash said. “He treated himself like a starter. I don’t think he’s here anymore, so he left to get his rest and get ready to throw one or two innings.
Washington’s Howie Kendrick will miss the rest of the season after he ruptured his right Achilles tendon Saturday. He’ll undergo surgery Monday. Kendrick was hurt in the opener of a doubleheader against the Dodgers when he took an awkward step while catching a flyball. He winced as he threw the ball, then went to the ground. Kendrick, whose .303 batting average leads the Nationals, was making just his fifth start in left field this season, having played mostly at second base. “It’s a huge loss,” teammate Bryce Harper said. “Not something you want to see, especially when we need him.
Heisman Trophy winner Johnny Manziel is heading to the Canadian Football League, looking to salvage his football career after a turbulent and unsuccessful NFL stay with the Cleveland Browns. The former Texas A&M quarterback signed with the Hamilton Tiger-Cats and appeared at a news conference Saturday, ending months of speculation on his possible path back to the game. “Made the decision today to sign my contract with the CFL and further my football career after a long break,” Manziel wrote on Twitter. “Very grateful for everyone that’s been supporting me along the way. I believe this is the best opportunity for me moving forward and I’m eager for what the future holds.
Brandon Crawford is hoping May lasts forever and June never arrives. Actually, the way the Giants’ shortstop is locked in, he probably believes he can hit all summer. That’s what happens when a guy gets on a roll like this. Every pitch is fat, every swing is picture-perfect. That’s life with Crawford, at least it has been since April was turning to May. On a sunny yet brisk and windy Saturday afternoon in China Basin, the Giants whipped the Rockies 9-4, and Crawford led the charge with three more hits, including a home run into the arcade that put the game away in the sixth inning.
TAMPA, Fla. — The Tampa Bay Lightning are on the brink of a return trip to the Stanley Cup Finals. Coach Jon Cooper and his players say it won’t be easy to close the deal against the Washington Capitals. “We haven’t won anything yet,” Cooper said Saturday night after Cedric Paquette scored in the opening minute and Andrei Vasilevskiy stopped 28 shots to help the Lightning hold off the Caps 3-2 in Game 5 of the Eastern Conference finals.
Nothing can stop Kevin Harvick these days, not an experimental rules package or a field of racers with nothing but pride on the line. The hottest driver in NASCAR scored a $1 million payday Saturday by winning the All-Star Race at Charlotte Motor Speedway in Concord, N.C. Harvick extended a hot streak that brought him into the night with five points race victories, including the past two. It’s technically three in a row now, although the All-Star Race is for cash only. “Everything is going our way,” Harvick said. “It’s kind of a game at this particular point.” Because the All-Star Race is a made-for-TV event, NASCAR could play with the rules.
A pair of juniors from the East Bay Athletic League — Monte Vista-Danville’s Zoie Hartman and Granada-Livermore’s Miranda Heckman — each won two individual events, leading a strong Bay Area showing at the CIF Swimming and Diving Championships on Saturday at Clovis West. Hartman, a Georgia commit, won the 200-yard individual medley in 1 minute, 55.95 seconds, more than four seconds better than runner-up Mai McKenna (2:00.00), a sophomore from Valley Christian. Hartman came back to win the 100 breaststroke in a state-meet record of 59.66. Heckman, a Texas commit, won the 200 freestyle in 1:46.49 and the 500 free (4:44.04).
SUNDAY Baseball 10a A’s at Toronto NBCSCA (95.