Boucher to return, Ladd to miss Game 1

CHICAGO — Philadelphia Flyers goalie Brian Boucher is available for Game 1 of the Stanley Cup finals, while Chicago Blackhawks forward Andrew Ladd will sit out with an undisclosed injury.


Boucher had missed seven straight playoff games with injuries to both knees after leaving Game 5 of the Eastern Conference semifinals against Boston. He’s expected to back up Michael Leighton.


The Blackhawks hope to have Ladd available at some point in the series after he was injured in the clinching win over San Jose in the Western Conference finals. He has not been able to practice this week.


With Ladd out, coach Joel Quenneville says Tomas Kopecky will take his place on the line alongside Dave Bolland and Kris Versteeg at least to start.



Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press


This story is from ESPN.com’s automated news wire. Wire index

If you are looking for free stories to read your children MLB

 If you are looking for free stories to read your children, this is it.  Here are five wonderful original stories to delight the heart of every child, and every adult with a child’s imagination. 


If you like these stories, tell your friends.    


    Children see things adults don’t even look for.  When we grow up we get caught up in the very real need to earn money and make good homes for our families.  We get too busy to see the miraculous and magical things that are happening all around us.


     This isn’t necessarily a bad thing.  We had our time of seeing the magic when we were children and saw everything with wondering eyes.  It is right and proper that we focus our energies on making a life for our children that leaves room for them to see the magic and holiness of daily life.  As they discover the truths of life through fresh eyes, we can get a renewed glimpse of the magic we once saw. 


     Here are stories of magical moments.  As an author, I have had to learn to see the magic of childhood, and to hear the stories as children tell them.  But children aren’t the only ones who experience magical transformations.  Animals, and even stones have stories to tell.


     I hope you enjoy the stories I have chosen for this site.  Two of them are about children who saw things in their world that no one else saw.  One is about a special puppy who needed a special friend.  One is about an alien child who explored our world for a day.  The other story is about a stone, and it is perhaps the most magical of all.

Profile: Duane Below

Background:

Below, a lefty, was selected by the Tigers in the 19th round of the 2006 MLB draft out of Lake Michigan College. He signed quickly allowing him to make 17 appearances in 2006, six of which were starts. He was successful with a combined  2.09 ERA in two stops for both the Tigers short season clubs. In 2007 Below pitched the whole season at low Class A affiliate the West Michigan Whitecaps where he made 26 starts with an ERA of 2.97. The following season in 2008 the Tigers continued his steady ascension and moved Below up one more level to high Class A Lakeland. Below struggled a little for the first time starting 27 games in 2008, finishing with a 4.46 ERA and a growing walk and strikeout rate. Feeling Below needed to work on his command started him in Lakeland again in 2009 where Below began the season impressively. After 6 starts in 2009 with a 12k/9 strikeout rate, the organization moved him to Erie. Below looked good in his two starts there as well before suffering an elbow injury and finishing the season on the disabled list. Below rehabbed and returned incredibly quickly making it back for the start of the 2010 season. Pitching all 2010 season in AA Erie, Below managed to make 28 starts less than a year removed from Tommy John surgery. He did struggle overall while building back up strength with a 4.93 ERA, but the encouraging news was Below began showing some control in 2010. He cut his walk rate from about 4.5/9 to a little less than 3/9.  Below, who is now 25 years old has started the 2011 season in the AAA Toledo Mud Hens rotation. Thus far he has been impressive in his 7 starts in Toledo sporting a good 2.70 ERA.

Repertoire:

Below is a typical starting pitcher in that he owns three different pitches, operating with a fastball, curve, and a change up. His fastball has a wide range of speeds, and can go anywhere between 88-94, but typically will sit around 91-92. Below shows a good ability to locate his fastball throughout the zone, though the pitch doesn’t have much movement. While he does move it in and out well, he does need to keep the pitch down more. There are also reports that Below has added a cut fastball throwing it in the mid to high 80’s as well.

His curve is his 2nd best pitch, mostly showing as slightly above average and flashing as plus on occasion. Below throws his curve typically in the high 70’s/low 80’s. He gets good break, though not a true 12 to 6 drop off the table curve. There is some loop to it, although he does generate swings and misses with the pitch. Like most of his repertoire Below has begun throwing more strikes with his curve adding to the quality of the pitch.

The change up is easily the least effective pitch of his arsenal as it has lagged behind developmentally. When he does throw the change it typically sits in the mid 80’s, and Below can throw it as high as 86-87, not giving the change up enough speed differential to be truly effective. When I have seen him he slowed his arm action down with the pitch and throws it more like a batting practice fastball. There isn’t much downward movement on the pitch or fade.

Outlook:

This is where I get optimistic on everybody. Below has a major league arm. Any lefty that can touch 94 with his fastball is going to spend some time in the bigs at some point. Whether that is a back of the rotation starter or a long lefty out of the pen, that remains to be seen. His pitches are similar to Charlie Furbush’s, though Furbush demonstrates a better ability to deceive and his pitches are just a bit sharper. Below tends to be a fly ball pitcher and is prone to giving up the long ball due to him not having good command within the zone.

Its going to be difficult for Below to crack the roster with Detroit. He has Furbush and Andy Oliver ahead of him. And both guys are lefties as well. His improvement with his control is encouraging, and any guy who bounces back from Tommy John that quickly gets bonus points for work ethic.

Ultimately I think Below will get a shot as a back half of the rotation option……I just don’t think it will be with the Tigers. Below will more than likely be a trade piece if the Tigers should want make a deadline deal or two this year.

How To Buy Local And International Discount Air Tickets…

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Getting discount air tickets for the best possible cheap airfares sometimes can be challenging, because if you do not know where and how to buy the airline tickets, yes! of course you will end up paying more than three times the normal full published fare.
It is true that there are numerous of the traveling industries available online if you search the internet, but it is the best for you to call your travel agents to see if they have better travel deals to offer than what you already seen online. And you must also put into consideration the date and time of your travel and number of stopover that may occur. And more so, some do wait for last minutes deals options but honestly, this is not the best because you could lose a lot of your hard carnies and also it is a time wasting.


If you must get discount Air Tickets easily you need to avoid traveling on weekends like Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays because I have discovered that local and international air tickets are generally higher on these days and most of the so called airlines agents charge extra fees as weekend charges on the air tickets so avoid it.
Secondly, I have also discovered that the best way to avoid overbooked and busy flights is to schedule your traveling trip off the holidays. I want you to know that time, day, seasons, and month is very important in determining how much you are willing to pay for cheap/discount air tickets.
Thirdly, Flying during the winter season except during the Christmas and New Year is the best way to get savings, so you will need to take caution flying during the winter holiday and during the high peak summer seasons if indeed you want Cheap air tickets.
And the last and not the list is planning and buying tickets in advance. I have find out that sometimes it depends the time you decide to book flight and availability of seats in discount airfares at that particular time, but the basic truth is that buying at least 2 to 4 months ahead of your travelling date can save you some extra dollars no doubt.


Really, the information above has open your eyes to some facts about how you can buy discount/cheap air tickets so as to save extra dollars to your pocket, but you still can search for more available options by searching the internet for information.

Tyler Apaches vs Richland Tducks (Apr 25, 2009)


Tyler Apaches vs Richland Tducks (Apr 25, 2009)


News Box Score

                           2009 Tyler Junior College Apaches
#1 Tyler Apaches at #3 Richland Tducks
Apr 25, 2009 at Dallas Tx (Richland Field)

Tyler Apaches 1 Richland Tducks 3

Player AB R H BI Player AB R H BI
————————————— —————————————
Josh Bates cf………….. 4 0 0 0 Williams cf……………. 4 0 1 1
Quinton Haynes lf………. 3 0 0 0 Elmore 3b……………… 2 0 0 0
Colby Welsh lf………… 1 0 0 0 Pfister lf…………….. 3 1 1 0
Tyler Pirtle dh………… 4 0 0 0 Paterson 1b……………. 4 1 1 0
Jeff Pine 2b…………… 2 1 1 0 Burton 2b……………… 4 0 1 1
Chase Daniel rf………… 4 0 1 1 Henderson dh…………… 3 1 2 1
Tanner Smith 1b………… 4 0 0 0 Kruse ss………………. 2 0 0 0
Kegan Johnson c………… 3 0 0 0 Castillo c…………….. 2 0 0 0
Jerrod Spillers ss……… 2 0 1 0 Pritchett rf…………… 2 0 0 0
Keaton Holland 3b………. 2 0 0 0 Richardson p…………… 0 0 0 0
Jordon Vierra 3b………. 1 0 1 0
Payton Parsons p……….. 0 0 0 0
Brian Baker p…………. 0 0 0 0
Brad Espino p…………. 0 0 0 0
Zac Zielinski p……….. 0 0 0 0
Alex Fambrough p………. 0 0 0 0
Totals………………… 30 1 4 1 Totals………………… 26 3 6 3

Score by Innings R H E
——————————————–
Tyler Apaches……. 000 000 001 – 1 4 0
Richland Tducks….. 000 011 01X – 3 6 0
——————————————–

DP – Tyler JC 1; Richland 1. LOB – Tyler JC 5; Richland 6. 2B – Daniel; Paterson.
HBP – Elmore; Pfister; Castillo. SF – Kruse. SB – Pfister; Burton; Henderson. CS –
Williams; Elmore.

Tyler Apaches IP H R ER BB SO WP BK HP IBB AB BF FO GO
—————————————————————————–
Payton Parsons L………. 5.0 2 1 1 2 4 0 0 3 0 14 20 5 4
Brian Baker …………… 1.0 2 1 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 5 5 2 1
Brad Espino …………… 1.0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 3 3 2 1
Zac Zielinski …………. 0.1 1 1 1 1 0 0 0 0 0 2 3 1 0
Alex Fambrough ………… 0.2 1 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 0 2 2 0 0

Richland Tducks IP H R ER BB SO WP BK HP IBB AB BF FO GO
—————————————————————————–
Richardson W………….. 9.0 4 1 1 3 5 3 0 0 0 30 33 6 15

WP – Richardson 3. HBP – by Parsons (Elmore); by Parsons (Pfister); by Parsons
(Castillo).

Strikeouts – Haynes; Pirtle 2; SmithT; Holland; Elmore; Pfister; Henderson; Kruse;
Castillo. Walks – Pine 2; Spillers; Elmore; Henderson; Pritchett.

Umpires – HP: Mike Pierce 1B: Mike Quasney
Start: 2:30 Time: 2:05 Attendance: 100

Game: RC6


Composite Box Score

                               2009 Tyler Junior College Apaches
#1 Tyler Apaches at #3 Richland Tducks – Composite Box Score
Apr 25, 2009 at Dallas Tx (Richland Field)

Tyler Apaches 1

Player AB R H BI 2B 3B HR BB SB CS HP SH SF SO IBB KL GDP PO A E
———————————————————————————–
Bates cf 4 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Haynes lf 3 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 1 0 1 0 0
Welsh lf 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Pirtle dh 4 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 2 0 1 0 0 0 0
Pine 2b 2 1 1 0 0 0 0 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 3 4 0
Daniel rf 4 0 1 1 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 3 0 0
SmithT 1b 4 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 8 0 0
JohnsonK c 3 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 6 1 0
Spillers ss 2 0 1 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 2 0
Holland 3b 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 2 0 0
Vierra 3b 1 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Parsons p 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Baker p 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Espino p 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Zielinski p 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Fambrough p 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Totals…… 30 1 4 1 1 0 0 3 0 0 0 0 0 5 0 2 0 24 7 0

Richland Tducks 3

Player AB R H BI 2B 3B HR BB SB CS HP SH SF SO IBB KL GDP PO A E
———————————————————————————–
Williams cf 4 0 1 1 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 4 0 0
Elmore 3b 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 1 1 0 0 1 0 0 0 0 3 0
Pfister lf 3 1 1 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 1 0 0 1 0 1 0 0 0 0
Paterson 1b 4 1 1 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 15 0 0
Burton 2b 4 0 1 1 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 4 0
Henderson dh 3 1 2 1 0 0 0 1 1 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 0
Kruse ss 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 1 0 0 0 1 7 0
Castillo c 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 1 0 1 0 5 0 0
Pritchett rf 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 0
Richardson p 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 0
Totals…… 26 3 6 3 1 0 0 3 3 2 3 0 1 5 0 2 0 27 15 0

Tyler Apaches IP H R ER BB SO WP HB BK IBB SH SF CI 2B 3B HR AB BF FO GO
—————————————————————————————-
Parsons L 5.0 2 1 1 2 4 0 3 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 0 14 20 5 4
Baker 1.0 2 1 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 5 5 2 1
Espino 1.0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 3 3 2 1
Zielinski 0.1 1 1 1 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 2 3 1 0
Fambrough 0.2 1 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 2 2 0 0

Richland Tducks IP H R ER BB SO WP HB BK IBB SH SF CI 2B 3B HR AB BF FO GO
—————————————————————————————-
Richardson W 9.0 4 1 1 3 5 3 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 30 33 6 15

Umpires – HP: Mike Pierce 1B: Mike Quasney
Start: 2:30 Time: 2:05 Attendance: 100

Game: RC6


Play-by-Play

                       2009 Tyler Junior College Apaches
#1 Tyler Apaches at #3 Richland Tducks – Play-by-Play
Apr 25, 2009 at Dallas Tx (Richland Field)

Score by Innings R H E
——————————————–
Tyler Apaches……. 000 000 001 – 1 4 0
Richland Tducks….. 000 011 01X – 3 6 0
——————————————–

Tyler Apaches starters: 0/cf Bates; 0/lf Haynes; 0/dh Pirtle; 0/2b Pine; 0/rf
Daniel; 0/1b SmithT; 0/c JohnsonK; 0/ss Spillers; 0/3b Holland; 0/p Parsons;
Richland Tducks starters: 5/cf Williams; 3/3b Elmore; 6/lf Pfister; 30/1b
Paterson; 4/2b Burton; 33/dh Henderson; 0/ss Kruse; 1/c Castillo; 0/rf
Pritchett; 9/p Richardson;

Tyler Apaches 1st – Bates grounded out to ss. Haynes flied out to cf.
Pirtle struck out swinging. 0 runs, 0 hits, 0 errors, 0 LOB.Richland Tducks 1st – Williams grounded out to 2b. Elmore hit by pitch.
Pfister struck out looking. Paterson flied out to lf. 0 runs, 0 hits, 0
errors, 1 LOB.
Tyler Apaches 2nd – Pine grounded out to ss. Daniel grounded out to 2b.
SmithT flied out to cf. 0 runs, 0 hits, 0 errors, 0 LOB.Richland Tducks 2nd – Burton grounded out to ss. Henderson singled to
center field. Kruse struck out swinging. Castillo struck out looking. 0
runs, 1 hit, 0 errors, 1 LOB.
Tyler Apaches 3rd – JohnsonK grounded out to ss. Spillers walked.
Holland reached on a fielder’s choice; Spillers out at second ss to 2b. Bates
grounded out to ss. 0 runs, 0 hits, 0 errors, 1 LOB.Richland Tducks 3rd – Pritchett walked. Williams reached on a fielder’s
choice; Pritchett out at second 2b to ss. Williams out at second c to 2b,
caught stealing. Elmore struck out swinging. 0 runs, 0 hits, 0 errors, 0
LOB.
Tyler Apaches 4th – Haynes grounded out to p. Pirtle grounded out to 2b.
Pine walked. Daniel flied out to 1b. 0 runs, 0 hits, 0 errors, 1 LOB.Richland Tducks 4th – Pfister hit by pitch. Paterson hit into double
play ss to 2b to 3b; Pfister out on the play. Burton flied out to rf. 0
runs, 0 hits, 0 errors, 0 LOB.
Tyler Apaches 5th – SmithT flied out to cf. JohnsonK flied out to cf.
Spillers grounded out to 2b. 0 runs, 0 hits, 0 errors, 0 LOB.Richland Tducks 5th – Henderson walked. Henderson stole second. Kruse
popped up to 1b, SAC; Henderson advanced to third. Castillo hit by pitch.
Pritchett flied out to 1b. Williams singled to right field, RBI; Castillo
advanced to third; Henderson scored. Elmore flied out to rf. 1 run, 1 hit, 0
errors, 2 LOB.
Tyler Apaches 6th – Holland struck out swinging. Bates grounded out to
3b. Haynes struck out looking. 0 runs, 0 hits, 0 errors, 0 LOB.Richland Tducks 6th – Baker to p for Parsons. Welsh to lf for Haynes.
Pfister grounded out to 2b. Paterson doubled to left field. Burton flied out to
2b. Henderson singled to left field, RBI; Paterson scored. Kruse flied out to
1b. 1 run, 2 hits, 0 errors, 1 LOB.Tyler Apaches 7th – Pirtle grounded out to 3b. Pine walked. Pine
advanced to second on a wild pitch. Daniel grounded out to 3b. Pine advanced to
third on a wild pitch. SmithT grounded out to 2b. 0 runs, 0 hits, 0 errors,
1 LOB.
Richland Tducks 7th – Espino to p for Baker. Castillo flied out to rf.
Pritchett flied out to 3b. Williams grounded out to 1b unassisted. 0 runs, 0
hits, 0 errors, 0 LOB.
Tyler Apaches 8th – JohnsonK flied out to rf. Spillers singled to center
field. Vierra to 3b for Holland. Vierra singled to right field; Spillers
advanced to second. Bates hit into double play ss to 1b; Vierra out on the
play. 0 runs, 2 hits, 0 errors, 1 LOB.Richland Tducks 8th – Zielinski to p for Espino. Elmore walked. Pfister
singled to left field; Elmore advanced to third. Pfister stole second. Paterson
fouled out to 1b. Fambrough to p for Zielinski. Elmore out at home c
unassisted, caught stealing. Burton singled to right field, RBI; Pfister
scored. Burton stole second. Henderson struck out swinging. 1 run, 2 hits, 0
errors, 1 LOB.
Tyler Apaches 9th – Welsh grounded out to ss. Pirtle struck out looking.
Pine singled to shortstop. Pine advanced to second on a wild pitch. Daniel
doubled to left field, RBI; Pine scored. SmithT struck out swinging. 1 run,
2 hits, 0 errors, 1 LOB.

Autographed Baseball Photos For Sale Online

Here are a couple of helpful hints to keep in mind when you are trying to get a baseball autographed by a sports celebrity. First, you want to be super polite when requesting a signature, second to that try to get the player to sign the baseball in what is known as the “sweet spot.” This spot is the area which is the narrowest point between the stitching on the ball; you want to do this especially if this is a single autograph. If you are able to get a really hot player or a hall of famer to sign your ball, having the signature in the sweet spot usually will raise the market value of the ball.


If you are collecting autographs for yourself or for a family member or friend, it is quite alright to have the ball personalized. Having this type of autograph doesn’t matter if you intend to get it graded by a reputable authenticator or company, it does not affecting grading. However, if you are trying to get the autograph for the sole purpose of reselling the ball, it is preferable not to have any personal message attached to it, for example; “To Nick” this type of autograph generally does not have great resale potential.


A lot of ball players prefer to sign a personalized autograph on the ball because they are concerned about having the ball resold, but that does not mean to say they won’t just give you a signature. Another thing to consider is possibly getting the player to not only sign a baseball but to get him to inscribe something that has relevance to that particular game or that particular player. This type of autograph is extremely valuable because it acts as provenance as to just how authentic or real the signature is.


When obtaining any autograph it is well worth your time and money to invest in the proper tools, so to speak. You will need a high quality blue or black ink ball point pen, sharpies are a no-no for autographs on balls, and they tend to smudge the signature. Sharpies are best suited for items such as 8×10 photos, bats, or a jersey. There are many types of baseballs out there that you can purchase, however a signed Official American or National league ball is better received in the market place. If money is a concern then you can always opt for a cheaper ball that you should readily find in most sporting good stores. Always remember though, the higher the quality equipment you use the nicer the autograph will be.


Once you have received your autographed ball, how will you preserve it? At one time many, many, many years ago people would often shellack the ball in order to preserve the autograph. Technology has brought us a long way, and now there are specially designed cases that you can use to display your ball in that will protect it from environmental damage. Also try to keep your autographs out of any direct sunlight, this can fade the signature.


To conclude, it is great fun to obtain an autograph from some of your favourite players, but remember if you want to share your sports memorabilia collection with others, or pass it on to other family members you must take care of it. Hopefully you will find that these tips will help you in preserving that special signature.

Who do you see making the club

Who do you see making the club, James Jurries or Brian Jordan? — Anthony S. Clemson, S.C.


Let’s first say that Jurries has done everything to prove he’s ready to play at the Major League level. There’s never been reason to doubt his offensive abilities, and defensively, his dedication has allowed him to prove he wouldn’t be a liability at first base.


But manager Bobby Cox has always liked to keep veteran players like Jordan, as long as they can be both productive on the field and in the clubhouse. Like there’s no reason to doubt Jurries’ bat, there’s no reason to deny Jordan’s tremendous leadership skills. But there’s certainly reason to wonder whether the 39-year-old veteran still has what it takes to make the necessary offensive contributions.


Jordan’s surgically-repaired knee appears healthy, and he’s definitely still capable of being a solid defensive outfielder. His athleticism has enabled him to quickly prove he could also provide a solid glove at first base.


Jurries hasn’t spent a lot of time in the outfield, but he has shown he could handle occasional time in left field if necessary.


There’s no doubt that sending Jurries to Triple-A Richmond to begin the season would mean that the Braves are sacrificing some offense. But Jordan’s defensive versatility and leadership might lead Cox to make this choice.


Assuming Wilson Betemit, a switch-hitter, is no longer bothered by his strained right rib cage, he and Matt Diaz give Cox a couple of solid right-handed options to send to the plate in pinch-hit situations. This certainly increases Jordan’s chance of being on the Opening Day roster.


Of course, if Betemit were to begin the season on the disabled list, there’s a chance both Jurries and Jordan would be on the Opening Day roster.


But if Betemit is healthy, odds are Jordan will stick around and Jurries will be forced to wait for his first opportunity to be a Major Leaguer.


The downside is that he’ll be 27 years old on April 13 and there’s nothing else for him to prove in the Minors. But he’s waited this long and there’s a good chance he’ll have to utilize his patience just a little longer.


Since Jarrod Saltalamacchia is having such a good spring, do you think he’ll see action with Atlanta this year? The Braves seem fine at the catcher position. But is there any chance he’ll play first? — Luke M. Rome, Ga.


There’s no doubt Saltalamacchia has impressed with his tremendous power from both sides of the plate. But before assuming he’s ready for Atlanta, there are certainly some things to remember. Along with three home runs, his Grapefruit League statistics through Sunday also included a .219 (7-for-32) batting average.


But more importantly, the 20-year-old catcher has just 782 at-bats above rookie level and exactly none above the Class A level. Comparatively, a then 21-year-old Jeff Francoeur had 1,269 at-bats above rookie level — 411 of which came at Double-A Mississippi — before he made his Major League debut last year.


The Braves will allow Saltalamacchia to continue the maturation process as a catcher at Mississippi this year. When the time comes that they’re forced to make a decision, they may move him to another position, such as first base.


But until he proves himself at the Double-A level and 22-year-old Brian McCann further solidifies his status as the club’s catcher of the future, there’s absolutely no reason to mess with Saltalamacchia’s development behind the plate.


What is your opinion of the overall depth and talent of the Braves’ Minor League organization for the upcoming season? — Lenny Land, Buford, Ga.


Recently, a top executive said, “Everybody is all excited about last year’s rookies, but they haven’t seen anything yet.”


Obviously, it appears Francouer, McCann and Davies have the makings to be superstars at the Major League level. They proved this last year, while proving to be the most impressive of the 18 rookies the Braves used to garner a 14th consecutive division title.


But the next wave of Minor Leaguers to hit Atlanta over the next few years also has a number of potential All-Stars. Saltalamacchia obviously appears destined for a great big-league career and there’s a chance Chuck James will have an impact in the Atlanta bullpen at the start of this season.


Any organization would like to have shortstop like Yunel Escobar or 17-year-old Elvis Andrus. The Braves have both.


Adding to the impressive depth of the Minor League system are the likes of third baseman Eric Campbell and 19-year-old left-hander Beau Jones, who could quickly establish himself as one of the top left-handed pitchers in the Minors.


Will Kelly Johnson get the majority of playing time in the left field platoon? — No name submitted, Hallandale Beach, Fla.


With Diaz and Jordan available to serve as backup outfielders, Johnson will either begin this season at Triple-A Richmond or on the disabled list. His surgically-repaired right elbow has been bothering him and there’s a chance he won’t return by Opening Day.


There’s also not a guarantee a platoon will be used in left field. Ryan Langerhans is superior defensively to both Jordan and Diaz, and he proved that he could hit left-handed pitchers in limited opportunities last year.


Who catches the bullpen pitchers when they warm up? If they are not roster players, is warming up pitchers their only job? — Robert Hansman, Cumming, Ga.


Bullpen catcher Alan Butts and bullpen coach Bobby Dews share this responsibility, which honestly is one of the least taxing roles they assume on a daily basis.


Dews, who will celebrate his 67th birthday on Thursday, spends the afternoon hours throwing early batting practice or working on defensive skills with players. In addition, his 46 years of professional baseball experience allows him to provide plenty of astute mental coaching.


As for Butts, he organizes all of the scouting reports in preparation for coaches meetings and develops spray charts after every game. In addition, he also throws countless hours of batting practice over the course of a season.


Being in the bullpen also requires one to have thick skin and the ability to take a joke.


While in Philadelphia a few years ago, one fan chose to take a line from the popular movie “Old School,” which included an older character named Blue. As Dews was in his crouch, the fan yelled “You’re my boy, Blue!”

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The fancy knot in the middle allows it to be worn as outerwear as well as underwear. This push-up, halter-style bra ties capitals around the neck and has hook and eye closures in the back. The fancy knot in the middle allows it to be worn as outerwear as well as underwear. We feature it capitals here in a super soft, cotton flannel print, trimmed with lace. This push-up, halter-style bra ties around the neck and has hook and eye closures in back. The fancy knot in the middle makes it dressy enough to wear outerwear as well as underwear. The scalloped edge of this delicate lace bra rests right capitals on top of the cleavage it creates. Adjustable straps and hook and eye back closures allow you to make this bra fit perfectly. The Jackie Lace Bra is an excellent match to our Kim Panty. The gold base and silver cups of this bra make it the perfect top to match our Lace-Up Shorts. The form-fitting spandex gives you maximum lift, while the halter strap and hook and eye closure back make the bra easy to wear. The 3/4 cups on this halter-style push-up bra really push you up and in, creating the ultimate bust line. Hook and eye closures on both the halter and back straps ensure an uplifting fit. This bra is super capitals comfortable and super sexy. Its lace-scalloped edges make the cleavage look amazing, while the lace straps rest beautifully on the shoulders.


This hot pant-style panty, with marrowed edges, is more like a pair of short shorts than a panty. Available in all fabrics, we feature it here in swirl velvet. This ribbed cotton 50’s-style panty has a full bottom and sides. It’s comfortable enough to wear as an everyday panty, but the lace trim and dainty bow always make it feel like a special occasion. This cotton 50’s-style panty has a full bottom and sides. It’s comfortable enough to wear as an everyday panty, but the lace trim and dainty bow always make it feel like a special occasion. This sheer leopard, 50”s-style panty has a full bottom and sides. It”s comfortable enough to wear as an everyday panty, but the lace trim and dainty bow always make it feel like a special occasion. This sheer knit 50’s-style panty has a full bottom and sides. It’s comfortable enough to wear as an everyday panty, but the lace trim and dainty bow always make it feel like a special occasion. This sheer knit 50’s-style panty has a full bottom and sides. It’s comfortable enough to wear as an everyday panty, but the lace trim and dainty bow always make it feel like a special occasion. This sheer knit 50’s-style panty has a full bottom and sides. It’s comfortable enough to wear as an everyday panty, but the lace trim and dainty bow always make it feel like a special occasion.

Mostly unchanged Canadiens look to youth to build off second-place season



The mostly unchanged Canadiens are looking to youth to build off second-place season. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Graham Hughes


MONTREAL It will be all about continuity for the Montreal Canadiens.


And theyll be a little bigger and grittier too.


The Canadiens were one of the big surprises of the lockout-shortened 2012-13 NHL campaign, as they went from last in the east to winning the Northeast Division and finishing second to Pittsburgh in the conference.


A sterling regular season was almost forgotten with their quick playoff exit at the hands of the Ottawa Senators, but defenceman Josh Gorges says there must have been a lot to their game that was worth keeping when they posted a 29-14-5 record in 48 games.


This year, its attention to detail and fine-tuning the little parts of our game, said Gorges. Were used to the system. Now its time to take it to that next level.


It is Season 2 with Marc Bergevin as general manager and Michel Therrien as coach.


Bergevin made a few moves, but kept the core of the team intact.


The biggest signing was small, skilled forward Danny Briere, who turns 36 on Oct. 6. The Gatineau, Que., native who grew up idolizing the Canadiens was bought out by the salary cap-squeezed Philadelphia Flyers and finds himself on right wing of the first line with David Desharnais and Max Pacioretty.


They added size and toughness by signing defenceman Douglas Murray, who is expected to skate on the third pairing, and fourth-line enforcer George Parros.


The notable departures were winger Michael Ryder, who was replaced by Briere, and little-used defenceman Tomas Kaberle.


The biggest question will be how Carey Price will perform after his game, which had been solid most of the campaign, fell apart late in the season and into the playoffs, prompting fits of angst among the teams fans.


Bergevin signed goalie coach Stephane Waite, who had helped Antti Niemi and Corey Crawford develop into Stanley Cup winners in Chicago, to work on taking Price to the next level. The 26-year-old wont lack motivation, as a strong first half could win him a spot on the Canadian Olympic team.


Where the Canadiens should get better is from the continued development of the three gifted young players who now form the third line—centre Lars Eller with pesky Brendan Gallagher and 2012 third-overall draft pick Alex Galchenyuk.


Gallagher was a finalist for the Calder Trophy after scoring 15 goals as rookie, but the playmaking Galchenyuk is the one with star potential who will be looking to improve on his nine goals and 18 assists in controlled ice time last season.


When asked where he thought the team would be better this season, the captain Brian Gionta said just maturity.


Look at the strides some of our young guys made last year. That end will be much better.


That would include the flashy 24-year-old P.K. Subban, Gorges defence partner who had a breakout year with 11 goals and 38 points in 42 games that won him the Norris Trophy as the NHLs top rearguard.


And 24-year-old Pacioretty, the power winger who led the team with 39 points.


Better seasons are expected from some older players as well.


Andrei Markov, who looked stiff at times on the rebound from a run of knee injuries, has been skating with something like his old fluidity in camp. When healthy, Markov is a first-rate puck-moving defenceman and power-play point man.


Its a huge lift having him as healthy and strong and conditioned as he is, said Gorges. Hes arguably a top-tier defenceman in the game today.


His ability to make plays and calm things down when things get crazy out there is unbelievable. Hes a big asset for our team.


Im just happy to be healthy and working hard like a normal person, said Markov.


He is paired with third-year blue-liner Raphael Diaz, at least until nasty hitter Alexei Emelin returns from a knee injury some time in December.


And there is forward Travis Moen, who struggled last season after signing a contract extension with only two goals and six points in 45 games. A checker, he isnt looked to for many points, but Moen looked listless for most of the 2012-13 campaign.


He looks to be in better shape than he was last season and it shows on the ice, said Therrien. He has a lot more jump in his game.


Moen has been mostly on the fourth line in camp. He is likely to share that unit with centre Ryan White, winger Brandon Prust and, at times, Parros.


The veteran second line is unchanged with Tomas Plekanec between Rene Bourque and Brian Gionta, who returns from a torn biceps muscle.


If a rookie sticks with the club it will no doubt be towering defenceman Jarred Tinordi, a stay-at-home type who can move the puck and plays a physical game.


With seventh defenceman Davis Drewiske injured, Tinordi could pressure slow-footed Murray and 37-year-old Francis Bouillon for a spot on the third pairing.


Greg Pateryn also looks close to being NHL-ready, so the Canadiens have depth at the blue-line.


Where they want to improve most is in their post-season play. Losing in five to Ottawa threw a large bucket of cold water on a team that had been hot for most of the regular season.


The challenge is always to be peaking come playoffs, said Gionta. It was a great accomplishment to win the division and come second in the conference, but at the end of the day, its what you do in the playoffs.


We want to finish as high as we can and then set the tone in the playoffs and improve on that.

Vinyl Above Ground Pools | Above Ground Inflatable Pool

Is there swimming Pool Chemicals that you put right into the pool water ?


prevent water from freezing in the very cold temperatures (Ohio), the pool is vinyl swimming, above ground? This is an area 18 pool, 4 feet deep. Please give me a link where I can buy this item if you know somewhere. Thank you! (Do not worry about the pool and pipes We punp because in winter, when itsself water pool)


You do nothing but add a chemical to water in winter Package contains after the evacuation, just below the level of packaging Chem return.The usually shock, algaecides and complexing agents. They add nothing to stop the water in the pool before the freeze. It just freezes at best, a foot from the surface. (It should be cold enough that generally they do not freeze to the bottom 6 inches), inside the pool will remain liquid. You put antifreeze in the pipes, but since you have your equipment interrupted, creepage will be autonomous (which is an Aboveground Pool) does not require antifreeze. Just hold your winter, both the return and the skimmer. In a slotted spoon, remove some of your empty bottles of chemicals and products are classified. Even a glass of polystyrene. Nothing which absorb water and is not squishable is soft bottle is empty whatever.This avoided, water accumulates and freezes it damaged the skimmer or bottles empty as you use the gel pack and ice there will not be harmful to your skimmer. When finished, put the lid and secure the cable. There an optional thing, on the surface of the pool before the lid and this is called a pillow “Pool” takes place. Everything is a device Inflatable located on the surface in the middle of the pool under the cover. He holds the cover and forcing the snow or rain, which accumulates around forum Discussion of the walls of the basin, making it a little easier to drain the spring .. Your choice here but if you have lots of snow or rain the day before the opening Spring, you have to remove the cap that this pillow is “the point where water could be covered. Personally, Im not a fan of them make cash only and if you have a good technique to drain the scope have spring, you do not need.