When the Patriots selected Mac Jones with the 15th overall pick in the 2021 NFL Draft, they thought they were finding a solution to life after Tom Brady. The following year, the Steelers selected Kenny Pickett 20th overall as the franchise's Ben Roethlisberger replacement. Neither has yet proven his worth. Neither is expected to play when the Patriots face the Steelers Thursday night in Pittsburgh. Pickett has been ruled out following ankle surgery. The Steelers are 7-5, and every game feels existential at this point. They'll turn this game over to Mitch Trubisky, who led a touchdown drive in place of Pickett last week, but Pittsburgh's crushing home loss to Arizona -- one of the worst in the Mike Tomlin era -- has heightened the tension in Steeltown.
Trading Juan Soto amounts to ripping off the financial Band-Aid. Granted, it’s a Band-Aid the size of a surfboard, but it had to happen. The bills are coming due for a franchise that pushed the limits and spent like MLB kings. They learned in 2023 that even a lineup filled with gilded superstars and one of the best rotations in baseball with a Cy Young winner and perhaps the best closer in the game was not enough.
The Nationals’ historically talented young outfielder was the talk of Yankee Stadium when Washington came to town in June 2018. He was one of the most exciting players in the sport, on a Hall of Fame pace, and the fans in the Bronx all but salivated at the thought of a lineup that paired him with All-Star slugger Aaron Judge. But it was not Bryce Harper who put on a show that week in New York, and it was not Harper who would come to wear the pinstripes.
n Mariners news... Manager Scott Servais shares his thoughts on the team’s recent trades and hopes to add multiple key pieces to their lineup. Patrick Dubuque at Baseball Prospectus describes how the timing of some of the Mariners’ historically biggest trades could play a part in how effective they become. ($) With Marco Gonzales sent Sunday in the deal to the Atlanta Braves, the Braves have reported that they are unlikely to keep him and plan to move him in another trade. Around the league... LHP Wade Miley has re-signed with the Milwaukee Brewers and will receive $8.5 million guaranteed. Philadelphia Phillies manager Rob Thomson has signed a contract extension that will keep him with the team through the 2025 season. The Detroit Tigers have signed manager A.J. Hinch to a long term extension. Houston Astros GM Dana Brown shuts down rumors that the team is considering trading third baseman Alex Bregman. Star free agent Shohei Ohtani is believed to have met with Toronto Blue Jays officials at the winter meetings yesterday. The Chicago White Sox and New York Mets appear to be the two finalists for free agent RHP Erick Fedde, and he is expected to agree to terms with one of the teams tomorrow.
The Cleveland Guardians will pick first in the 2024 MLB amateur draft next summer for the first time after winning the second-ever draft lottery Tuesday at baseball's winter meetings. The Guardians had just a 2% chance of earning the No. 1 pick and beat out eight other teams with better odds -- including the Oakland Athletics, Kansas City Royals and Colorado Rockies, each of which had an 18.3% chance of winning the first pick, tied for the best percentage among all teams.
It’s all part of the wildness and secrecy surrounding Shohei Ohtani’s free agency. Information about what the once-in-a-lifetime talent wants in free agency has been sparse — it’s as well-guarded as state secrets. But Dodgers manager Dave Roberts showed the first outward signs of interest from any team. "Clearly, Shohei’s our top priority," Roberts told reporters during his 20-minute availability at the Gaylord Opryland Resort. "I think it went well." Cubs manager Craig Counsell refuted any contact with the prized talent. "I have not, no," Counsell said when asked if he had met with Ohtani.
Rhen Richard is heading back to the NFR Live for the third year in a row, all of which he has spent inside the top 10. Richard heads to the 2023 Finals with the same partner as he has had for the previous two as well, Jeremy Buhler. At No. 7 on the head side, Richard earned $123,484 during the 2023 regular season and posted the second-fastest Average Time of his career at 7.46 seconds.
It’s hard to believe that the start of the Iowa high school football season was just under three months ago and now it's all over. On Thursday and Friday, state champions were crowned across all seven of Iowa's classes. From 8-player all the way up to Class 5A, high school football players and coaches from seven programs put together title-winning campaigns.
As you may have heard, Beyond the Box Score has shut down. Thank you to everyone who read and contributed to the site over the years. (1/2)— Beyond the Box Score (@BtBScore) April 19, 2022