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Five years ago, Happ took a line drive directly to his head
08-12-2019, 01:33 AM
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Five years ago, Happ took a line drive directly to his head
ST. PETERSBURG Connor McGovern Jersey , Fla. — Tropicana Field has not been kind to J.A. Happ.

He fell to the ground hard enough that he strained ligaments in his knee, and it would be three months before he returned to the mound.

Happ will start for Toronto in Thursday’s series finale, and while he’s been back to the Trop nine times since his injury there, he’s won only once, in that same 2013 season, in just his third game back from injury.

Happ is off to a solid 8-3 start with a 3.71 ERA, and he’s 4-0 in his last five starts, taking a full run off his season ERA along the way. One of his three losses this season came against the Rays, giving up three runs on four hits in 5 2/3 innings in a May 4 loss where he walked more batters (four) than he struck out (three). On Friday against Baltimore, he was especially sharp, throwing seven innings and allowing only two hits and a single unearned run.

And while he’s struggled at Tropicana Field, his overall career numbers against the Rays are better, with a 3-4 record and 5.05 ERA — he has just one win in 10 appearances against Tampa Bay over the last four seasons.

Tampa Bay, trying to push through a rash of injuries to its starting pitching, continues to experiment regularly with “openers,” using relievers as part of bullpen days to start about half their games in recent weeks. Nowhere is the Rays’ desperation more glaring than with Thursday’s starter, Wilmer Font, who is already playing for his third team this season.

Font pitched six games with the Dodgers, then four with the Athletics Khari Willis Jersey , and he’s now made five appearances with the Rays. He’s 0-3 on the season with a 9.59 ERA, but in his five games with Tampa Bay, he’s fared much better, with a 3.24 ERA and 0-1 record. In those five games, he’s thrown 8 1/3 innings, allowing three earned runs on five hits. In his last outing, also a makeshift start, he lasted into the third inning Friday against Seattle, but gave up two runs on two hits, getting five of his seven outs via strikeout.

Font has actually faced Toronto already this season while with Oakland — staked with the ninth inning and a 9-0 lead, he gave up a two-run home run to Yangervis Solarte.

The two American League East rivals went into Wednesday’s game within a half-game of each other in the standings, still well ahead of last-place Baltimore.

Toronto gets Thursday off before beginning an interleague stretch at home, with three games against the Nationals, then two against the Braves. The Rays, meanwhile, go on the road for the next week, with four games at the Yankees and three at the Astros, then returning home with seven of their next nine again against the Yankees and Astros.

FOXBOROUGH, Mass. (AP) — Tom Brady has a 29-3 record against the Buffalo Bills, the most victories by a quarterback against one opponent. A 30th will give the Patriots their 10th straight AFC East crown.But he won’t have suspended receiver Josh Gordon, who was starting to carve out a vital role in the England’s offense.“There wasn’t much reaction Josh Allen Jersey ,” a subdued Brady said Friday, answering the first question at his weekly media gathering. “We all wish him the best. I think that’s kind of how we all feel. We want him to do what’s right for him.”Several teammates commented on the loss of Gordon, who left the team Thursday to “step away” and is again suspended by the NFL for violating terms of his reinstatement under the substance abuse policy. Brady has commented almost weekly about all the positive work being put in by Gordon. He was asked Friday if he saw any indication trouble might be coming, if there was shock when he heard about it.“That’s exactly how I felt, so . I certainly appreciate all his efforts and hard work and, you know . I didn’t have much of a reaction,” Brady said. “Just focus on what I need to do. That’s kind of the way it’s been all year.”So there was no indication of any trouble?“I mean, I have no idea,” Brady said. “I showed up, I heard, just like everyone else.”Brady, whose locker was next to Gordon and was viewed as sort of a mentor for the troubled receiver, wouldn’t say if he reached out to him“Those are all very personal things,” he said, “so I’ll keep those to myself.”Brady and the Patriots host the Bills this week and the Jets in the regular-season finale – and have to do it without Gordon.“I have a lot of confidence in the guys that have been in there,” said Brady, who noted the team could have lost Gordon or anyone else on the first play of Sunday’s game and had to adjust from there. “Jules (Edelman), Philip (Dorsett), Hoge (Chris Hogan), CP (Cordarrelle Patterson) – they all do a good job. They all have different roles.”Gordon had 40 receptions for 720 yards and three touchdowns with the Patriots — five years removed from an All-Pro season in 2013 with 87 catches for 1,646 yards and nine touchdowns.“There’s a lot of those different types of feelings and emotions over the course of the year Jawaan Taylor Jersey ,” Brady said. “We all have lives that exist outside of this building. There’s a lot of support from everyone and everyone goes through different things throughout the year. We’ve certainly faced our fair share of adversities. I think part of that is mental toughness and when you actually go out on the field and in meetings and so forth, you just focus on what you have to do and what your role is, what your job is.“I think we’ve done a good job of that. We’re just working through the week and realizing obviously it’s a huge game, a big opportunity for us and it’s one that we’ve got to win, so we’ve been talking about that all week.”Earlier Friday, coach Bill Belichick addressed Gordon’s situation, saying he spoke with the wide receiver Thursday morning.“It’s obviously an unfortunate situation, and personally, I wish him the very best, as we all do on this team,” Belichick said. “He’s made a statement, the organization’s made a statement, the league’s made a statement. I’ve spoken on him at length over the last three months, and so I don’t really have anything at this point to add to that. It’s a private matter, and I hope that he’s able to deal with it successfully.“So, otherwise, we’re moved on to Buffalo and big challenge ahead of us on Sunday. Today will be a big day for us, and we need to make the most of it and be ready to go.”
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