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Red Sox Hire Chili Davis as Hitting Coach


Joe Robbins/Getty Images(BOSTON) -- Former major league all-star Chili Davis was hired to be the Boston Red Sox hitting coach Thursday.

Davis joins the Sox after serving the previous three seasons as the Oakland Athletics' hitting coach. He also served in the same position for Boston's Triple-A affiliate, Pawtucket, in 2011.

"Chili's experience and success as both a player and a coach make him a valuable addition to our staff," Red Sox skipper John Farrell said. "We are excited to have him working with our hitters."

Davis takes over for Greg Colbrunn, who served as Boston's hitting coach the past two seasons.

Davis played 19 seasons in the majors, during which he hit .274 with 354 home runs, 1,372 RBIs and a .360 on-base percentage.

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Sizemore Signs 1-Year Deal with Phillies


iStockphoto(PHILADELPHIA) -- The Philadelphia Phillies signed outfielder Grady Sizemore to a one-year, $2 million contract Thursday.

Sizemore, 32, joined the Phillies last June after he was released by the Boston Red Sox. He played in 60 games for Philadelphia in 2014, hitting .253 with three home runs, 21 runs scored, 12 RBIs and one stolen base.

Before injuries derailed his career Sizemore was thought to be one of the best outfielders in baseball, making three All-Star teams and winning two Gold Gloves.

In nine MLB seasons, Sizemore has hit .266 with 144 home runs, 485 RBIs, 140 stolen bases and a .352 on-base percentage.

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Steve Nash Out for Entire Season


NBA via Los Angeles Lakers(EL SEGUNDO, Calif.) -- Los Angeles Lakers point guard Steve Nash will miss the rest of the season due to a recurring back injury, the Lakers announced Thursday.

"Being on the court this season has been my top priority and it is disappointing to not be able to do that right now," Nash said in a statement released by the team. "I work very hard to stay healthy and unfortunately my recent setback makes performing at full capacity difficult. I will continue to support my team during this period of rest, and will focus on my long-term health."

Nash played in just 15 games for the Lakers last season while dealing with various injuries. He hasn't practiced with the team since Oct. 12, when he tweaked his back while carrying bags.

Nash, 40, is in the final year of a three-year, $28 million deal that will pay him $9.7 million this season.

Nash has played 18 NBA seasons. During that time, he's won two league MVPs and has been named an all-star eight times.

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Sanders Sails Broncos Past Chargers


(DENVER) -- Emmanuel Sanders caught a career-high three touchdowns to lead the Denver Broncos past the San Diego Chargers 35-21 Thursday night.

Sanders finished his big day with nine catches for 120 yards and those three touchdowns.

"Every week we don't know where the ball is going to go," Sanders said. "The defense really dictates that and what Peyton is seeing. And tonight was just my night."

                                                                 
Peyton Manning completed 25 of 35 passes for 286 yards and three touchdowns, including a 31-yard bomb to Sanders with 32 seconds remaining in the first half to put the Broncos up 14-7, giving them the lead for good.

Juwan Thompson ran for two second-half touchdowns, and Ronnie Hillman had 98 yards rushing for Denver (6-1).

Philip Rivers completed 30 of 41 passes for 240 yards, three touchdowns and two interceptions for San Diego (5-3).

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Scoreboard Roundup 10/23/14


Hemera/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- NFL: Denver 35 (6-1) - San Diego 21 (5-3)

NCAAF: (18) East Carolina 31 (5-1) - Connecticut 21 (1-5)

Miami (FL) 30 (5-3) - Virginia Tech 6 (4-4)

NHL: New York Islanders 3 (5-2-0, 10 pts) - Boston Bruins 2 (4-5-0, 8 pts)

Detroit Red Wings 4 (4-1-2, 10 pts) - Pittsburgh Penguins 3 (3-2-1, 7 pts) (F/OT)

Minnesota Wild 2 (3-2-0, 6 pts) - Arizona Coyotes 0 (2-3-1, 5 pts)

Nashville Predators 3 (5-0-2, 12 pts) - Chicago Blackhawks 2 (4-1-1, 9 pts)

Vancouver Canucks 4 (4-2-0, 8 pts) - St. Louis Blues 1 (2-3-1, 5 pts)

Calgary Flames (4-3-1, 9 pts) - Carolina Hurricanes (0-3-2, 2 pts)

Buffalo Sabres (1-6-0, 2 pts) - Los Angeles Kings (4-1-1, 9 pts)

Columbus Blue Jackets (3-2-0, 6 pts) - San Jose Sharks (4-2-1, 9 pts)

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Atlanta Braves Name John Hart President of Baseball Operations


Tom Szcaerbowski/Getty Images(ATLANTA, GA) -- John Hart has accepted a permanent role as president of baseball operations with the Atlanta Braves.

The team announced that Hart has signed a three-year deal that will run through the 2017 season.

Atlanta fired longtime GM Frank Wren after a disappointing 2014 season that saw the Braves finish 79-83, and named Hart as interim GM.  Wren had been the GM since 1990.

Earlier in October the Braves had offered Hart the role of general manager, but he turned down the role. Now Hart will likely search for the man to take on the challenge as Braves GM.

 

“I’m delighted that John Hart has agreed to accept the position of President, Baseball Operations,” team president John Schuerholz said in a press release. “Our organization is now poised to move forward in the best possible manner to do the important work that lies ahead. John’s credentials speak for themselves. He has had great success as a baseball executive and demonstrated remarkable ability to construct championship teams. We are excited by John’s dynamic and positive leadership style and look forward to him leading our baseball operations.”

Hart certainly has the pieces in place to contend for a title.  With star players like Freddy Freeman, Jason Heyward, and Justin and BJ Upton, the Braves have the players for a potent offense.

"You certainly love your star players, but I tell you I love the winning players," Hart said. "I like the players with grit. I like players that care more about winning than anything else. It's a team game and it is about winning."

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Mettenberger To Start For Struggling Titans


Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images(NASHVILLE, TN) -- A new era is likely beginning in Tennessee, as the Titans have announced rookie quarterback Zach Mettenberger will start this Sunday against the Houston Texans.

Mettenberger, a sixth-round pick out of LSU, will replace struggling starter Jake Locker.  Locker had missed the previous two games with a thumb injury and appeared ready to return, but head coach Ken Whisenhunt had other ideas.

"We're going with Zach and we're going to stay with Zach," Whisenhunt said.

The Titans have had trouble scoring points this season. They are averaging 17.3 points per game, ranking 28th in the NFL. They rank 27th with 320.3 yards per game.

''No question he's a talented, young player, and maybe it'll give us a spark,'' Whisenhunt said. ''Offensively, we haven't exactly been lighting it up, so that's part of it in consideration.''

This will likely be the end of Locker's career as a Titan.  Locker was the first-round pick of the Titans in 2011. Struggling through injuries and inconsistent play, Locker never quite reached the expectations that had him once projected to be the first overall pick in the 2010 draft.

Locker will be a free agent at the end of the season after the Titans declined his 2015 option.

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Richard Sherman: 'The Team's Still Confident'


Steve Dykes/Getty Images(SEATTLE) -- Seahawks cornerback Richard Sherman still believes his team has what it takes to get back to serious football in January.

Despite dropping back-to-back games against the Cowboys and Rams, Sherman said the team's spirit is high headed into their game against the Carolina Panthers (3-3-1) on Sunday.

"The team's still confident in what we can do," Sherman said on Wednesday. "I think our team is fine and understands what we need to do to turn it around."

Sherman continued that he understands it's a long season, but "the intensity's fine." He added, "In games like we've had these last couple weeks, it's just a few plays here and there.  I think all games are won or lost off a few plays, I think anyone who knows football would tell you the same."

Seattle's defense ranks 19th giving up 23.5 points per game. They will have the task of stopping quarterback Cam Newton, who has his team in first place in the NFC South.

"They're a lot of challenges to playing Cam," Sherman said.  "Obviously he's a threat running the football, he's a big body, he's tough to sack.  It's going to be a challenge for our defensive line and our linebackers."

Seattle finished 13-3 on their quest to the Super Bowl title last season.

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Gus Malzahn Says He Expects South Carolina's Best


Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images(AUBURN, Ala.) -- Fifth-ranked Auburn is preparing for a South Carolina team that came into the season ranked in the top-ten, not the current one that sits at 4-3.

Tigers head coach Gus Malzahn said this week that he believes South Carolina will be pumped up for a big game on the road.

"They got good players, we expect to get their best," Malzahn said.

Malzahn also knows the opposing coach Steve Spurrier very well and credited the way he prepares his players.

"[I've] always looked up to Coach Spurrier," Malzahn said. "[I] have nothing but respect for the way he operates.  He's got a great offensive mind.  I got to know him off the field, he's a super guy, and one of the best."

South Carolina is 1-1 on the road this season and is averaging 35.1 points on offense, but the Tigers only allow 18.1 points per game.

"We look forward to going to Auburn," Spurrier said on Tuesday.  "You got to believe you have a chance if your team plays very well.  We're going in with the idea that we're going to get in a battle with them."

"We've got to play very well offensively, defensively, and on special teams," he continued. "Hopefully they'll drop the ball a little bit or something good like that will happen for us."

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Michigan State Coach Is Looking Forward to Rivalry with Michigan Saturday


David Dermer/ Diamond Images/ Getty Images(EAST LANSING, Mich.) -- Eighth-ranked Michigan State will look to add a sixth victory in the in-state rivalry between Michigan under head coach Mark Dantonio on Saturday.

Since coming over to East Lansing, Dantonio has won five out of six games against the Wolverines, who are 3-4 this season. Still, Dantonio is excited about the rivalry.

"It gets in your blood a little bit, it's just the way it is," Dantonio said on Tuesday.  "It just divides the state so it makes it unique in that respect, and you embrace it, you get involved in it, and it's in you."

Dantonio says despite Michigan's poor record this year, the team still gets pumped up for any rivalry.

"I think they're basically competitors," Dantonio said. "You're going to get yourself ready to play every football game.  Sometimes the more important the game is, the more the competiveness comes out in you and I think that's the nature of this situation."

The Spartan are 3-0 in the Big Ten this season and Michigan is 1-2. Still, Michigan quarterback Devin Gardner said they're just focused on the game ahead and not the season.

"We're not thinking about ruining their season," he added. "This is about us. I want to win this game as bad as I've wanted to win any game."

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