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I knew that was his position, why not do it now? Youre going | Forum

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LHX1990 Aug 14
CHICAGO -- Miguel Cabrera reached 300 home runs with the Tigers, Justin Verlander eclipsed 200 strikeouts on the season and Francisco Rodriguez moved into fourth place on the career saves list. Jessie Bates III Youth Jersey .Yet it took Justin Upton coming through in the clutch for a second straight day to keep Detroit tied for the final AL playoff spot.Upton hit a three-run home run in the 11th inning and the Tigers beat the Chicago White Sox 5-3 on Monday for their 11th win in 14 games.Chris Beck (1-1) issued consecutive two-out walks to Victor Martinez and J.D. Martinez before Upton crushed a 1-2 fastball to right for his 21st home run. It was his second game-winning homer in two days after connecting in the eighth inning Sunday against Kansas City.Thats what you live for, man, Upton said. Thats what you play the game for, the big moment when you can help your team out.Detroits hot streak has coincided with Uptons tear. He has eight home runs in 14 games.Ive been on time a lot more, Upton said. Im giving myself a better opportunity to see the ball and put good swings on it.Cabrera homered twice and had four hits off Chris Sale, and Verlander struck out 11 in seven innings as the Tigers stayed tied with Baltimore for the second AL wild card.Cabrera became the fourth player to reach 300 homers with the Tigers with a liner to right in the first. He secured his fifth multihomer game of the season with a drive to left-center in the third, his 31st of the season.Hes probably one of the most elite right-hand hitters in the history of the game, Tigers manager Brad Ausmus said. He continues to hit. Hes got a tremendous, mechanically-sound swing and hes extremely strong.Cabrera also singled and doubled for his sixth four-hit game of the season. He had all but two of the hits allowed by Sale, who struck out eight and walked none in eight innings.Alex Wilson (2-0) gave up one hit in the 10th and Rodriguez allowed a run in the 11th before securing his 39th save. He moved past John Franco for fourth on the saves list with 425.Verlander allowed eight hits and saw his chance for a 15th win dashed when former Tigers catcher Alex Avila tied it with a solo homer in the seventh. It was Avilas second homer off Verlander in five days.For whatever reason, catchers tend to hit the guys theyve caught for a long time pretty well, Verlander said.It was the second Verlander-Sale matchup in a week. Neither ace factored in the decision in Detroits 3-2 win Wednesday, either. The White Sox again failed to support Sale and fell to 2-8 in his last 10 starts.Chicago has gone 42-62 since beginning 23-10.It falls on us mostly, Sale said. You just have to look yourself in the mirror and say, `What do we have to do to change it?TRAINERS ROOMTigers: 2B Ian Kinsler didnt start but pinch ran in the 11th. ... CF Cameron Maybin (thumb) returned after a five-game absence. ... RHP Jordan Zimmermann (neck) allowed seven runs -- two earned -- and six hits in 4 2/3 innings in a rehab start for Toledo. ... RHP Mike Pelfrey (back) was activated off the disabled list and moved to the bullpen. I get it, he said. Everybody in the rotation is throwing well.White Sox: Manager Robin Ventura said shutting down struggling RHP James Shields (back) is possible. Shields has allowed a major league high-tying 35 homers.CABRERAS MILESTONECabrera joined Al Kaline (399), Norm Cash (373) and Hank Greenberg (306) in Detroits 300-homer club. Cabrera has 439 career home runs.SIT DOWNVerlanders first-inning strikeout of Melky Cabrera gave him 200 in a season for the sixth time in his career and the first time since 2013.Reports of his demise were premature, Ausmus said.NICE CATCHChicagos Cabrera robbed Maybin of a leadoff home run with a leaping grab at the left-field wall.UP NEXTWhite Sox RHP Miguel Gonzalez (2-6, 4.05 ERA) returns from a groin injury Tuesday night to make his first start since Aug. 11. LHP Matt Boyd (5-2, 4.00) will be recalled from Triple-A to start for the Tigers. Michael Jordan Jersey . They hope to persuade the other team owners and commissioner Roger Goodell to put pressure on Redskins owner Daniel Snyder to drop the nickname they find offensive. "Given the way the meeting transpired," Ray Halbritter, an Oneida representative and leader of the "Change the Mascot Campaign," said Wednesday, "it became somewhat evident they were defending the continued use of the name. Jessie Bates III Womens Jersey . Already owning gold from competition in Vancouver in 2010, Loch posted a combined four-run time of 3:27.526. That included a track-record third run of 51. http://www.bengalsrookiestore.com/Bengals-Michael-Jordan-Jersey/ . 9. Price, heading to the 2014 Olympics for Canada, was named the First Star after posting wins in three starts with a 1.00 goals-against average and a .971 save percentage. NEW YORK -- Giannis Antetokounmpo had just missed a triple-double by two rebounds and two assists for the third time this season when he was asked a question that temporarily tripped him up.What is the most difficult part of getting a triple-double?Hardest part? Uhhhhh, I dont know, Antetokounmpo said, shrugging his shoulders as if he was a 7-year-old asked to explain why he doesnt like a certain brand of cereal.Excuse Antetokounmpo if he makes it sound and look easy. The humble 22-year-old Bucks star carries himself with the curiosity of an innocent kid. Youll often see him looking around his surroundings and asking questions or thinking about how to answer a question like an inquisitive third-grader. Hes soaking everything Jason Kidd and his coaching staff teaches him and that sponge continues to only expand.In his fourth season, Antetokounmpo has taken another gigantic Giannis-like stride forward -- you know, like how he only needs a ridiculous two to three steps to go from halfcourt logo to the rim.The Greek Freak is averaging 22.3 points, 8.9 rebounds, 5.9 assists, 2.0 blocks and 2.0 steals. All are career-highs. During each of his four seasons, Antetokounmpo has improved his averages in just about every one of his statistical categories except for free-throw and 3-point shooting from the season before.While Russell Westbrook has taken the league by storm with his historic triple-double act, Antetokounmpo is quietly putting together the type of season only some legends have had.Since 1973-74, only Magic Johnson, Larry Bird, Michael Jordan and Scottie Pippen (last to do it consecutively from 1993-95) have averaged at least 20 points, 8 rebounds, 5 assists and 2 steals in a season, according to ESPN Stats and Info. And only one other person has ever averaged at least 20 points, 8 rebounds, 5 assists and 2 blocks in a season -- Kareem Abdul-Jabbar.Heres the truly frightening thing -- Antetokounmpo can actually get even better. This year, the Bucks human Swiss Army Knife was drafted an average of 12th in ESPN fantasy leagues. He certainly will be a top-10 draft pick, if not even a top-six pick next year. After Westbrook, James Harden, Steph Curry, Kevin Durant and Anthony Davis, you can make an argument for drafting Antetokounmpo in the same breath with the likes of Karl-Anthony Towns, LeBron James, Kawhi Leonard and DeMarcus Cousins.Consider this: as good as Antetokounmpo is now, think about when his mind, instincts and experience finally catches up to those Go-Go Gadget arms and things actually start to slow down even more for him? Remember, he is still learning how to play point guard/point forward/point center under Kidd. Hes only been in this role since February and hasnt even played point for an entire season.What happens when he actually can shoot with the confidence of an All-Star or even add a back-to-the-basket go-to-move? And how scary will it be when he learns how to win consistently and he craves winning the way his coach did as a player?Hes a lot like Magic Johnson used to be as far as putting the ball on the floor, his size, his length, his athleticism, Toronto coach Dwane Casey recently said according to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. Hes a lot like Magic in that he came into the league not being able to shoot the ball.NBA general managers already rate Antetokounmpo as the NBAs best international player and second only to LeBron James in versatility, according to NBA.coms annual survey. If he is able to keep this up for an entire season, he would be the only player to average 20 points, 8 rebounds, 5 assists, 2 blocks and 2 steals in a season.Hes doing all this despite still very much learning the angles and different spots on the floor all while playing five different positions on certain nights.On one recent night against the San Antonio Spurs, Antetokounmpo started the game guarding Pau Gasol before later moving onto Leonard. He fought foul trouble with five fouls but still managed 22 points and 11 rebounds in 29 minutes in a 97-96 loss to the Spurs.In another game against Toronto, Antetokounmpo guarded big men like 7-foot Lucas Nogueira and 6-foot-9 Patrick Patterson to wing men like the 6-foot-7 Terrence Ross and even 6-foot-7 DeMar DeRozan at times. Jessie Bates III Jersey. While it may not seem like it with the stat-sheet stuffing numbers he puts up, Antetokounmpo is still very much learning how to be the kind of playmaking point guard that Kidd wants. And that is with him already getting better from last season.Hes made improvements in all areas, said one Bucks assistant coach. When you talk about how much better he has gotten, he really has put in a lot of time. His ballhandling, decision-making is better, hes a better screener than he was before. His weak-side defense, he has got to be one of the better guys in the league.If you look at his length... he is putting his arms out and one time he was damn near virtually touching the ballhandler and his own guy in the corner. There are definitely things he can continue to improve upon... He is a foreigner so language-wise, he is speaking more confidently with basketball communication being very important. And physically, he has improved on his body and strength.Shooting, of course, is the next logical step forward for Antetokounmpo. The Greek star is shooting a career-high 52.4 percent but just 23.6 percent from behind the arc. As Jabari Parker continues to improve, Antetokounmpo should continue to see plenty of scoring opportunities in theory.Right now, Im working every day and my main focus is to shoot without hesitating, Antetokounmpo said after making 2-of-5 3-pointers and having 23 points, 8 rebounds, 8 assists, 4 steals and 2 blocks against the Nets at the start of the month. That is my main focus right now, if it goes in or goes out, just shoot without hesitation... just let it fly.Antetokounmpo notes how difficult it can be for a 7-footer with long arms to catch and shoot. The Bucks wing man points to near his waist and explains how catching the ball there and bringing it up above his chest smoothly can be arduous.Concentrate on my follow through and keep the ball high because tall people, it is hard for us to shoot, Antetokounmpo explains. Because from here (points to near waist) when you get the ball to here (points above chest), it is a long way. I am just trying that when I get the ball here to just go up with it. Confidence is a big part of shooting.Two things the Bucks are seeing opposing teams do against Antetokounmpo is either back way off him or get physical with him. Antetokounmpo is recognizing how to deal with this and with time, he could start hurting teams in the post. He is working on a mid-range and post game and his length really could be deadly down in the paint with a go-to post move.The jump shot part, Id say he is getting more confident, the Bucks assistant said. Mechanically, he has made improvements and he is still making improvements. DeRozan is a good example of how he can improve -- couldnt shoot great, slasher and now that guy makes every two-point jump shot he damn near takes. Once you figure it out, it kind of clicks.Antetokounmpo said after a win in Brooklyn this month that Dirk Nowitzkis shooting coach, Holger Geschwindner, has offered to work with the Greek Freak in the offseason in Germany. He said he hopes he can make the trip from Greece to Germany if schedules permit.Antetokounmpo is shooting just 18.2 percent on attempts that are 10-to-16 feet from the basket, according to Pro Basketball Reference. Visions of Antetokounmpo adding the Dirk one-legged turnaround fadeaway jumper to his raw but growing arsenal is a nightmare for opponents already terrorized by the Greek Freak.Its a smart thing on his part, Casey told the Journal Sentinel of Kidd moving Antetokounmpo to point. If I had a young kid like that and I knew that was his position, why not do it now? Youre going to have to live with some of the bad -- I know hes had 13 turnovers in a couple games (recently).But I promise you the payoff is going to be much better than it is now. Its sort of like what we did with DeRozan here earlier. You go through growing pains. The dividends will pay off down the road. ' ' ' 
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