Watch: Phillies’ Vince Velasquez Drilled in Right Arm, Makes Play With Left-Handed Throw

Phillies pitcher Vince Velasquez left the game after taking a 96 mph line drive off of his right arm.

Phillies pitcher Vince Velasquez left Saturday’s game against the Nationals after taking a line drive off of his right arm. 

In the bottom of the second inning, Velasquez was drilled in the right arm by a 96 mph line drive hit by Adam Eaton. The ball bounced off of Velasquez’s arm and rolled away from the mound towards third base. Velasquez picked the ball up and made an incredible left-handed throw to first base for the out. 

Velasquez then fell to the ground and was clearly in pain. He left the game with a bruised right forearm, according to MLB.com’s Todd Zolecki

The Nationals were up 1-0 when Velasquez exited the game. 

World Cup Daily Podcast: France Proves Pedigree With Win Over Argentina

Both Argentina and Portugal were knocked out of the World Cup on Saturday—and with them, two players who are considered among the greatest of all-time—as France and Uruguay, respectively, won their games and moved on to the quarterfinals. With France’s incredible attacking display against Argentina, should it now be considered one of the favorites to win the tournament? 

Listen to the full episode below, and be sure to subscribe to our podcast on iTunes to hear each and every episode throughout the 2018 World Cup.

Here’s a selection of the latest episode, which can also be listened to in its entirety in the podcast console above:

GRANT WAHL: So Lionel Messi is out. Cristiano Ronaldo is out and, to be honest, they deserve to be out. They were beaten by better teams. France 4, Argentina 3. Uruguay 2, Portugal 1. And this was a pretty clear case, to me, of team beats superstar. 

BS: Yes, big names on flawed teams. How many men on Argentina would start for France? Messi and maybe Deschamps would kind of like take Aguero, because (Jorge) Sampaoli didn’t really seem to want to use him that much anyway. But otherwise, I mean, France was a far superior team and I’m surprised they yielded three goals today, to be honest. But obviously, the whole world will be talking about Kylian Mbappe and what a performance that was. And then Uruguay yeah, just down the spine so good. The Pepe header was the first goal they gave up in this tournament. But Ronaldo and Messi got shut out. Ronaldo and Messi, neither one of them have ever scored a goal in a World Cup knockout round game so I guess they’re both just big chokers. 

GW: (Laughs)

BS: It’s a joke, everyone! And the right teams won and France and Uruguay will meet in the quarterfinal in Nizhny. 

GW: A game that I can’t wait for actually and I think Uruguay has a good shot to win. In fact, I predicted Uruguay to beat France before the tournament in the quarterfinal. But part of that’s because the France that we saw today, when they are going, I really do believe they have the highest ceiling of any team in the tournament. When they are clicking, they click better than anybody else. 

BS: Yeah! And that’s why I picked them to win the World Cup. And up until today, they just looked turgid and dull and maybe they needed someone to come at them a little bit. Maybe they needed a little bit more flow to a game to see France at their best and obviously, there will be things about today that they’ll want to correct. But certainly the most lively we’ve seen them. The most enterprising we’ve seen them. And that was kind of what I was hoping for when I picked them to win the whole thing. 

GW: I mean, if I were France early in the second half, when you’re down 2-1 suddenly, I think my reaction would have been, “I can’t believe I’m losing this game.” Because they were terrific in the first half and then Di Maria gets the equalizer simply because, great shot for one, and two, nobody from France seemed to want to defend him. 

BS: Well yeah, that’s how players like Messi make an impact even when they’re not scoring goals, right? Because every defender on the field has got one eye on Messi. But you also say you know what, if God can hit a 30-yard shot into the corner, bless him. But yes, they’ll have wanted to have done a better job closing that down but that was also an incredible strike, topped only by the law of physics-bashing/defying/mocking goal by Benjamin Pavard, who is not a player I had even heard of before the World Cup. Have you slowed that down? 

You’ve got all the Fox—you’re on the Starship Enterprise ridge there—like slow that down to like a ball rotation per second and figure out how the hell he did that. What an amazing shot that was. Goal of the tournament, easily for me. … That was ridiculous. But France’s response, and like I said, even though I picked them, I’ve also written about and even sort of joked a little bit about, yeah, but they could just decide they hate each other or go on strike. Like there’s always something about this team or there’s a nervousness about this team that they don’t have the intangibles. 

That France doesn’t bring the mental steel. The s— that Uruguay always brings! Just some countries have this and some teams have this and some cultures have this and some don’t. And their response, exactly what you said, right? “How the hell are we losing this game?” Their response in that moment was wonderful and it was that response that carried them to that deserving win. 

Continue listening in the podcast above or download and subscribe to the podcast here.

TUMS Will Give Away Heartburn Medicine to Cavs Fans if LeBron James Leaves

  TUMS will give away heartburn medicine to fans at the first home game of the season if LeBron James leaves Cleveland.

Cleveland fans can’t catch a break.

After the Browns went 0–16 last year, fans held a “Perfect Season Parade,” that was sponsored by Excedrin.

This year, TUMS will give away heartburn medicine to fans at the first home game of the season if LeBron James leaves Cleveland, according to Cleveland.com.

And with the way rumors are shaping up, it appears James might be headed to the Lakers. He opted out of his deal on Friday, and the star is reportedly in Los Angeles.

In response to the possibility, the company is trying to offer some support.

“Hey Cleveland, is the basketball free agency mania triggering heartburn? TUMS feels your pain and will deliver free TUMS at the first home game of next season if your star decides to take his talents to another team,” said TUMS Brand Manager Valeria Saccol said in a press release, according to Cleveland.com. “TUMS may not be able to convince him to stay in The Land, but at least we can provide heartburn relief for fans who need it.”

Good luck Cavs fans as the Decision 3.0 nears.

Jorge Sampaoli Insists He’ll ‘Come Back Stronger’ After World Cup Exit Following 4-3 Loss to France

Argentina boss Jorge Sampaoli insists he’ll ‘come back stronger’ after La Albicelsete’s World Cup campaign came to an end following their 4-3 loss to France in the last 16. 

In one of the games of the tournament so far, the two sides headed into half time level after Angel Di Maria’s thumping effort cancelled out Antoine Griezmann’s penalty, before an early goal in the second half from Gabriel Mercado put Argentina ahead.

France rallied however as a stunning Benjamin Pavard effort and brace from Kylian Mbappe put the French back into the ascendancy, rendering Sergio Aguero’s late header little more than consolation. 

It’s been a difficult tournament for Samapoli and Argentina, as questions of player unrest persisted throughout their time in Russia, yet speaking post-match, the 58-year-old believes he will learn from the experience.

Robbie Jay Barratt – AMA/GettyImages

As quoted by Sky Sports, he said: “I had many expectations and we wanted Argentina to go as far as possible in this World Cup. I always believed that Argentina could win, these frustrations will make me stronger, and this has allowed me to learn and to grow.

“The players have made a huge effort and it was a very difficult game. The players gave everything on the pitch but have not achieved our goal here in Russia. I’m sad and frustrated.”

Not since 2002 have Argentina failed to make it to at least the quarter finals at the World Cup, although despite Sampaoli’s struggles, not least trying to get the best out of Lionel Messi, he thanked his players for their efforts.

He continued, stating: “We had a clear need and that was that we had to win. We have the best player in the world and we had to try and create situations so we could use that player, who can have really brilliant moments.

“Sometimes we managed to do so, sometimes we didn’t. This team fought until the very last minute and nearly equalised at the end, and that’s what I really value. I want to say thank you to all those players for being here and for trying to go as far as possible.”

The World Cup Will Be Just Fine Without the Exhausting Messi vs. Ronaldo Debate

MOSCOW — The first day of the World Cup’s round of 16 is behind us. Fourteen teams remain alive, there are 14 games to go, and now we can get on with enjoying the remainder of this engrossing tournament and then crowning a champion. The incessant, unresolvable GOAT debate will get a welcome rest.

Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi—or in the interest of fairness and precision, Portugal and Argentina—have been eliminated. They all lost to better teams on Saturday, thus ending the 2018 World Cup runs, and perhaps the World Cup dreams, of two generational icons.

Their sensational careers have played out (and been consumed, debated, marketed, celebrated and overanalyzed) in concert and contrast. They’ve swapped titles, individual honors and awkward handshakes, going head-to-head on either side of soccer’s greatest club and sportswear rivalries. Ronaldo, 33, and Messi, 31, are very different men. They’ve got different skills, approaches, personalities and physiques, and they seem to be motivated by different things. Those variations, along with their achievements, create a sporting and cultural inkblot test that fans and media outlets (including this one) can’t ignore.

But Saturday, they tripped on a common thread. Soccer is a team sport, and in the international game, you’re forced to play with what you’ve got. Their clubs can recruit, bid, spend and poach. Their countries’ fortunes are subject to the state of the domestic player pool and the competence of their respective federations. There’s only so much even soccer gods can do about that. It was clear even before Saturday that the current versions of Argentina and Portugal aren’t close to championship-caliber.

Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo both had their nations eliminated from the World Cup

Antoine Griezmann, Benjamin Pavard, Kylian Mbappé (twice), Ángel Di María, Gabriel Mercado, Sergio Agüero, Edinson Cavani (twice) and Pepe all managed something Saturday that neither Messi nor Ronaldo has ever done. They scored in a World Cup knockout match. As a result of all those goals and at the end of a gripping pair of games, France defeated Argentina, 4-3, and Uruguay beat Portugal, 2-1. The winners move on to next Friday’s quarterfinal in Nizhny Novgorod.

Les Bleus, and specifically the 19-year-old Mbappé, tore sluggish Argentina apart. How many of Messi’s teammates could start for the victors? And Uruguay simply was a better, more well-structured side. La Celeste play with a consistent team concept. It’s based on shape, commitment, a sturdy spine and the unique attacking partnership between Cavani and Luis Súarez. A modest team becomes a whole greater than the sum of its parts. That’s going to be tough for a single player to beat, no matter how many billboards he’s on.

So Messi and Ronaldo head home, taking their rivalry and the endless and derivative conversation about their legacies with them. They lost, even though they aren’t losers. And they aren’t losers, even though they’ve never scored at the business end of a World Cup. They’ve done enough to be legendary, but clearly not enough to definitely separate one from the other—or convince the world to stop trying. That was the case before this World Cup and it’s the case as they exit.

Ronaldo started better in Russia, tallying a hat trick in a gripping 3-3 tie against Spain to open the group stage. Messi started his tournament by missing a potential game-winning penalty against Iceland. But Messi finished stronger, scoring a spectacular goal against Nigeria to send Argentina through, then notching two assists on Saturday. Conversely, Ronaldo was quiet and cautioned. Had Portugal won, he would’ve been suspended for the quarterfinals.

Who had the better World Cup? You could make a case for either. And you will, if there’s a player you already prefer. Who’s been better for his national team? You could make a case for either. And you will, if there’s a player you already prefer.

Messi’s never won a senior title with Argentina, as we’re reminded every time the camera cuts to Diego Maradona being an imbecile. But Messi’s got a World Cup golden ball in his trophy case. He’s played in four major finals, and never got knocked out of the group stage of a World Cup. He may have done some of his best work during the current cycle, scoring seven of Argentina’s 19 qualifying goals then helping an old, turgid team to the round of 16 here in Russia.

Ronaldo has what Messi doesn’t, a national team trophy, thanks to Portugal’s Euro 2016 triumph. For some, that ends the debate. Or, that trophy proves the point that one man can’t produce a title. Ronaldo scored just one goal in Portugal’s four knockout matches two summers ago (and it came against Wales), and he played just 25 minutes of the 120-minute final against France. That day, Portugal won without him. Does Ronaldo get the credit? Do Gonzalo Higuaín’s misses in Santiago, Rio de Janeiro and East Rutherford ruin Messi’s legacy?

Again, if you have an opinion, you likely already have a favorite. And no evidence to the contrary is going to change your mind. And that’s fine. Soccer and history are subjective.

But that’s why the argument is so exhausting, even if it’s not entirely pointless. As a proxy for the Barcelona-Real Madrid rivalry, it’s used to troll the opposition. It can be a fun debate, an excuse to demonstrate your nuanced soccer intellect to some simpleton, or the inspiration to compile some jaw-dropping highlights. But it will never be resolved, and it’s become rather clichéd, because there is no answer. We can’t even agree on definitive GOAT criteria, and that’s after Messi did that ridiculous photo shoot and Ronaldo responded with a not-so-subtle beard stroke.

Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi had their teams eliminated from the World Cup

Getty Images/Paper Magazine

Maybe it will continue forever (unless Mbappé wins everything), with each side cherry-picking the statistic of their choice to emphasize a point that can’t be proved. The Messi-Ronaldo debate has been the sport’s soundtrack for a dozen years. It’ll be a relief as the narrative here in Russia, at least for the next two weeks, focuses on something else—on better teams and players who will seize their moment. We’ll catch up with Messi and Ronaldo when La Liga restarts in August.

It’s unclear whether either has an international future. Ronaldo is older, but remains in impressive physical condition and doesn’t seem to be as emotionally exhausted playing for his country as his rival (again, see Maradona). Messi, meanwhile, could hang on for just one more year in order to have another crack at a trophy. There’s a Copa América in Brazil next summer.

Hopefully they both continue. They’re immense fun to watch, and that enjoyment doesn’t depend on deciding that one is definitely better or GOATier than the other. It doesn’t matter. Nothing changes, no matter how many times the conversation is had. And in a way, the entire dialectic unfairly reduces the tournament, their teams and both men. If Messi is from Mars and Ronaldo is from Mt. Olympus, then goats—or, the debate that animal represents—live beneath both.

Spain Handed Injury Scare After Gerard Pique Suffers Ankle Knock in Training Ahead of Russia Tie

Spain have been left sweating over the fitness of defender Gerard Pique after the Barcelona star suffered an ankle injury during training ahead of their World Cup last 16 clash with Russia on Sunday.

As reported by Marca, the 31-year-old was involved in a collision with goalkeeper Pepe Reina, receiving treatment to his ankle before rejoining the training session at the Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow.

However, it is unclear how much damage was done to Pique’s ankle and he should be cleared to play in Spain’s knockout game against Russia as Fernando Hierro’s side look for a second win at the tournament.

Pique has played every minute of Spain’s campaign so far and is looking for his second World Cup title triumph after succeeding with the national team back in 2010. He was also part of the team that won the 2012 European Championship.

Hierro explained tactics during the training session while the squad went through ball exercises and rondos.

David de Gea is expected to start again despite recent reports claiming the Manchester United goalkeeper could be dropped, while Koke could play from the outset and Diego Costa is expected to feature again up front. 

Russia looked impressive during their group stage victories against Saudi Arabia and Uruguay but the 3-0 loss to Uruguay, who themselves reached the quarter finals after beating Portugal on Saturday, exposed the defensive fragilities present in the host nation’s side.

OZAN KOSE/GettyImages

Spain have conceded five goals in three games at this World Cup, three in the 3-3 draw against Portugal and two in the 2-2 tie with Morocco, and kept a clean sheet in the 1-0 success versus Iran. 

Tiger Woods Shoots 68 in Third Round at Quicken Loans National

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REVEALED: The Generous Gesture Liverpool Will Make for Naby Keita’s First Game in Pre Season Match

New Liverpool signing Naby Keita will make his Reds debut in a pre season friendly against Chester next week, and the non league club are set to make 100% of the gate receipts.

The Chester Chronicle report that a strong Liverpool team filled with players currently not at the World Cup will play in the match, and Keita could be set to be included.

“It is a great gesture from Liverpool and we will receive 100% of the gate receipts,” said Chester chairman David Harrington-Wright.

“We have hosted their under-23s and women’s team here and we have a great relationship with them and they have been absolutely first class with us, they really have.

“Liverpool also know that they will be playing on a superb surface and that has been a major plus in them wanting to use us time and again and we are grateful for the support we have received from them over this and the gesture of allowing us to keep the profits from the game.

“It will be a hugely exciting day. Liverpool have told us they will be bringing a strong squad of first teamers, those who haven’t been at the World Cup.”

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Fellow new signing Fabinho could also play, while Loris Karius, Georginio Wijnaldum, James Milner and Virgil Van Dijk may also feature.

Uruguay 2-1 Portugal: Cavani Shines While Ronaldo Fizzles as La Celeste Progress to Quarter Finals

Uruguay booked their place in the last 16 of the World Cup with a workmanlike 2-1 victory over Portugal, aided by two excellent goals by Edinson Cavani.

The game had barely had a chance to settle down before Uruguay were in front, Cavani linking up brilliantly with strike partner Luis Suarez to power in a bullet header from close range.

Julian Finney/GettyImages

The early goal should have brought the match to life but even so the first half remained a tepid affair with few real chances to speak of, Suarez coming the closest to adding another goal when his low free-kick was well saved by Rui Patricio.

Portugal began the second half with a slight tweak in formation that saw Joao Mario and Bernardo Silva swap wings and subsequently showed more urgency in the second half, keeping Uruguay firmly penned back and finally getting their reward in the 55th minute when Pepe ghosted into the box to head home from Raphael Guerreiro’s pinpoint cross.

Yet despite Portugal’s dominance it only took a few minutes for Uruguay to restore their lead, Cavani racing onto a pass to curl home a beautiful first-time shot from the edge of the box.

Despite enjoying more than two thirds of the possession for much of the game, Portugal were unable to create many solid chances or cause any real trouble for the resolute Uruguayan defence.

Cristiano Ronaldo was a particularly anonymous figure for a great deal of the match, rarely finding himself in any positions of real danger and being forced to resort to efforts from long range.

Portugal could have had an equaliser in the 70th minute when Fernando Muslera failed to grab hold of a cross but the ball dropped for Bernardo Silva on his weaker foot and the Manchester City forward volleyed over the bar with the goal at his mercy.

And although Portugal toiled away and spent almost the entirety of the second half camped in Uruguay’s half, they were unable to claw their way back into the game.

With their victory at the 2016 European Championship now a fading memory, this defeat now raises serious questions about where Portugal. 

Key players such as Ronaldo, Pepe, Bruno Alves and Ricardo Quaresma are now beginning to approach the twilight of their careers and are unlikely to be present at the next World Cup, meaning Portugal must look to their younger talents to lead the country forward as they bounce back from a disappointing campaign in Russia.

With few of these players managing to make a great impression at this World Cup, one could be forgiven for asking where Portugal will find the new leaders in their squad.

Uruguay will now look forward to their quarter-final tie with France on Friday and will expect to have their hands full after Les Bleus’ impressive 4-2 victory over Argentina earlier on Saturday.

Report Calls on Liverpool to Shortlist PSG Forward as Long-Term Replacement to Philippe Coutinho

Liverpool manager Jürgen Klopp could be looking to sign Paris Saint-Germain playmaker Julian Draxler this summer after a deal for Lyon’s Nabil Fekir fell through, according to reports.

The Germany international was part of Joachim Löw’s squad that disappointed at the World Cup, with the reigning champions being sent home during the group stages following defeats against Mexico and South Korea.

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Liverpool manager Klopp should be hoping that Draxler’s tournament-free summer will allow the Reds to swoop in and tempt PSG into a sale, according to the Liverpool Echo

The club are still looking to replace Philippe Coutinho, who left Anfield to join Barcelona in January, which has become a top priority this summer.

Draxler has been on Liverpool’s radar for a number of years, first breaking onto the scene with Schalke 04 before having an equally impressive spell with VfL Wolfsburg.

The 24-year-old then moved to Paris in 2017, where he has gone on to score 15 goals and claim 12 assists.

Liverpool did have a deal in place to sign Lyon talisman Fekir earlier this summer. The 24-year-old even completed his initial media duties with the Red before the French club announced that the move had fallen through, reportedly due to them backtracking on the initial fee following his medical.

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Fekir is now being tipped for a move to Manchester United, with reports in Lyon suggesting that the Red Devils have already made an offer for the France international ahead of the new campaign.