BEIJING -- Canadas Kevin Koe won both of his games at the world mens curling championship on Monday to move into sole possession of second place in the round-robin standings. Brent Honeywell Rays Jersey . Koe started the day with a 9-1 blowout victory over Russias Evgeny Arkhipov at Capital Indoor Stadium and then came back for a 10-6 win over Jiri Snitil of the Czech Republic in the late draw. "For sure, you have to pull some games out," said Koe. "We werent struggling as bad (as on Sunday). The sheet was a lot better than yesterday, but no excuses. The Czechs were playing really well and making some big shots. "I was proud of the guys. We really stayed in there, tried to stay positive and keep it close." Koe, who suffered his only loss to Japans Yusuke Morozumi on Sunday morning, improved to 4-1 after eight draws. Norways Thomas Ulsrud was the lone undefeated team at 5-0. Germany, Japan, Sweden and Switzerland were tied for third place at 3-2 in the 12-team round-robin standings. The Calgary-based team of Koe, lead Nolan Thiessen, second Carter Rycroft and third Pat Simmons shot 96 per cent as a team against Russia. Thiessen and Rycroft both scored perfect games. "That felt way better," said Rycroft. "We threw some stinkers yesterday, and we were lucky to get away with 1-1 (on the day). Finally today we felt like we got a bit of a handle on things. "We were throwing them properly. Still missing a few, but at least were throwing them with conviction. The results? You cant worry about them too much because you still get caught on certain spots." In the late game, Snitil controlled the early ends and built a 6-3 lead. Koe scored a pair in the sixth end and pulled even with a steal in the eighth on a nice hit and roll. The Canadians followed up with arguably their finest end of the tournament, making eight perfect shots in the ninth end. Koe, sitting four and guaranteed a steal, forced Snitil to attempt a wide outturn draw to bite the outside of the four-foot to limit the damage. However, the Czech rock caught debris outside of the house and ground to a halt, giving the Canadians a steal of four and ending the game. "That ninth end was real unfortunate for them, but we were stealing one at worst," Koe said. "We would have been one up coming home and it would have been anybodys ball game, but this was a big one." Even as the Czechs built their lead through five ends, Koe said his teammates never lost their focus. "Weve talked with our coaches about it off the ice," he said. "If were going to lose, lets at least keep battling and stay positive. We did that very well in that game. Its easy to get frustrated after the first few ends, but we hung in there and Im really proud of the guys for battling that hard." Canada will play the United States and Norway on Tuesday. Round-robin play continues through Thursday. The playoffs begin Friday and the medal games are scheduled for Sunday. Koe won gold in 2010 at his only previous appearance at this event. Canada has won gold in three of the last four years. Eric Sogard Jersey . Yahoo! Sports columnist Marc Spears says that the Boogie Smooth album may have been an elaborate April Fools prank. Rays Jerseys 2020 . The 23-year-old from Thornhill, Ont., defeated Germanys Benjamin Becker 6-3, 6-4 on Tuesday in the fourth round of the Sony Open in just 89 minutes.An independent arbitrator has finally ruled on Alex Rodriguezs appeal, reducing his suspension from 211 games to 162 for his involvement in Major League Baseballs Biogenesis scandal. A-Rod is also disqualified from any post-season play. So at the tender age of 38, he will miss all of next season. As a result of missing the coming season, hes also out $25 million (which coincidentally is my hourly rate). This brings the arbitration process to a close. This case, however, is far from over. Still some track to cover. Who was the arbitrator? His name is Fredric Horowitz, hes 64 years old and specializes in labour and employment arbitration. After MLB fired arbitrator Shyam Das when he overturned Ryan Brauns suspension, Horowitz was hired to replace him and handle these types of grievances. Hes been a full time arbitrator since 1988. Who won the appeal? This is a win for MLB. A big win. While the suspension was reduced by 49 games, this should not be seen as a failure for baseball. A substantial part of the suspension was preserved (about 75per cent). So while we saw a reduction, MLB ultimately got its wish: A-Rod is gone for all of next season. As well, based on past arbitration cases and MLBs Drug Policy, it could have been worse for MLB. Historically, arbitrators dont like to see punishments or sanctions that seem to be a dramatic departure from the existing rules and policies at play. So are you saying that A-Rods suspension could have been reduced by a lot more? Yes. The collectively bargained Drug Policy provides for a 50 game suspension for a first time offender like him, and as a result his 211 game suspension may have been found to have been not only excessive and heavy-handed, but also not in keeping with the Drug Policy. The Drug Policy calls for a specific punishment for a first time offender, and that punishment was ignored in favour of a far longer suspension. If that argument got any traction, the arbitrator could have reduced the suspension by many more games. So why didnt the arbitrator reduce the suspension by more games? He was convinced that a substantial suspension was warranted. Based upon what we know about this case, MLB argued that A-Rod had engaged in an extensive and continuous pattern of PED use since at least 2010. He also has a long standing relationship with Biogenesis founder Tony Bosch that dates back to 2009. MLB also alleged that A-Rod obstructed its investigation, tampered with witnesses and generally interfered with its attempt to get to the truth. MLB has also suggested that A-Rod may have also recruited players to Biogenesis. Ultimately, his pervasivve and wide ranging pattern of wrongdoings was not only contrary to the Drug Policy, but also the MLBs Basic Agreement, which allows baseball to discipline a player for conduct detrimental to the game. Nate Lowe Jersey. So given these various factors, A-Rods suspension was reasonable in the eyes of the arbitrator. So all of these elements conspired to result in only a modest reduction in the suspension. Was this ruling predictable? Yes. A reduction was in order but nothing earth shattering. So whats next for A-Rod? Hes says hes going to challenge the decision in Court. A-Rod filed his lawsuit against the league (and also personally against Commissioner Bud Selig) months ago in anticipation of being in a position to challenge the whole Biogenesis investigation and suspension. The first thing he does is ask a judge to put the suspension aside until such time that the case is decided in a court of law (which could take years thereby allowing A-Rod to play out his contract). A-Rod is unlikely to be successful with this request since this type of relief is only awarded in very special circumstances; and this isnt one such case on its face. Horowitz is a seasoned and respected arbitrator, and a court will defer to him. Right now, MLB is trying to have the case kicked out of Court, while A-Rod wants it moved to state court. It would be a surprise to see a judge kick the case out of court completely; still A-Rod faces challenges. Enough Jibber Jabber. Can A-Rod win in Court? Probably not. Heres your bottom line: judges are very reluctant to overturn arbitrators unless their decisions are off the wall. The reasoning is this: arbitrators are specialists on the issues they rule on and judges are not in a better position to decide these cases. Also, judges want people to respect arbitration and take it seriously. If they didnt, the lines at the court house would be a lot longer. Apart from being a partner at a law firm, Im also an arbitrator. When Im making my rulings, I know that unless Im totally out in left field, my decision will stand if challenged in court. So A-Rod has a real uphill battle ahead of him. The likelihood of success seems low. However, A-Rod may still pursue it and this could go on for years. Anything else I should know about? One small thing: Federal law enforcement officials are investigating Biogenesis raising the possibility of criminal charges. If that happens, expect the feds to have A-Rod testify under oath. At that point, he would be advised that he needs to tell the truth, failing which he could face perjury charges. This is quite the mess. Yep. ' ' '
TORONTO -- After taking a sip of water at the start of his news conference, Toronto Maple Leafs general manager Dave Nonis made sure to thank the players who were around last season and left on the first day of free agency. Cecil Cooper Brewers Jersey . "I just wanted to thank them for what they attempted to do over the last 12 months and wish them all the best going forward," Nonis said. Attempted might be the most important word after the Leafs went from being almost surely playoff bound to collapsing with an eight-game losing streak. Gone from that group are centres Dave Bolland and Mason Raymond, who signed elsewhere Tuesday. In come defenceman Stephane Robidas, signed to a US$9-million, three-year deal, and forward Leo Komarov, signed to an $11.8-million, four-year deal, along with forward Matt Frattin, re-acquired in a trade that sent winger Jerry DAmigo to the Columbus Blue Jackets. Its Noniss hope that those players change the Leafs mix back to more of what it was like in the lockout-shortened 2013 season, when they made the playoffs. "The compete level that we had two years ago, I think was at or near the top of the league," Nonis said. "We got more out of our players, the coaches did, the players themselves did in terms of pushing each other, than we did last year -- no question about it. Some of the players that were talking about either were here and will help us get that back or have a history of doing that. That was a focus for us." Robidas at 37 brings 885 games of experience to Toronto, along with a right-handed shot. He broke his leg while playing in the playoffs for the Anaheim Ducks but started skating last week and expects to be ready for Day 1 of training camp. Komarov returns from the 2013 Leafs after a year with Dynamo Moscow of the KHL. He had four goals and five assists in 42 games that season, but the 27-year-old Finn is expected to have a much bigger role this time around. "Leo offers a lot more than I think even we got out of him two years ago," said Nonis, who met with Komarov in Finland and "laid that out so that he knew that he wasnt just a fourth-line guy that was playing six minutes a night, that we feel that he can do more." Komarovs return could help fill the void left by the departure of Bolland, who signed for five years and $27.5 million with the Florida Panthers. Bolland said on a conference call with local media that the Leafs were close to bringing him back. "We were getting there," the 28-year-old Toronto native said. "We were just a little bit apart." Nonis did not begrudge Bolland for taking the more lucrative deal with the Panthers. "We feel our offer was very fair, very strong, it reflected his value to us," he said. "He chose to go somewhere else, thats his right. Hell be a good player for them ... The only way to prevent that from happening was to spend more than we felt was appropriate, and I dont think thats something we wanted to get into." Raymond also got more money than the Leafs were willing to pay: three years and $9.5 million from the Calgary Flames. Being closer to home was part of the Cochrane, Alta., natives decision to go there. Even before signing in Calgary, Raymond expected changes around the Leafs under new president Brendan Shanahan and after the teams late-season collapse. "I think we all wouldve loved to finish a lot better," Raymond said in a phone interview. "When you have new management or different changes within the organization, that (roster moves are) susceptible to happen." What Bolland and Raymond have in common is they werent around for the Leafs somewhat-expected 2013 season that Nonis seems to want to replicate. Komarov and Frattin, who was sent to Los Angeles a year ago in the deal that brought goaltender Jonathan Bernier to the Leafs, were. "We talked a little about the chemistry that we had two years ago and the work ethic and i think players playing outside their comfort zone," Nonis said. "Those are two players that played a big part in it." Notes -- Nonis said if a trade for restricted-free-agent goaltender James Reimer was there and made sense, the Leafs would make it. Otherwise, he reiterated, Reimer could be back next season. ... The process of hiring assistant coaches is still ongoing with no resolution as of Tuesday. Rob Deer Jersey . (January 11, 2014) – Once again Kevin Martin proved why he is the all-time TSN skins leader, winning $11,500 in prize money and a spot in the Travelers All-Star Curling Skins Game presented by Pintys final following a semifinal victory over Brad Jacobs earlier this evening at the Fenlands Banff Recreation Centre in Banff, Alta. Eric Thames Jersey . J.J. Hardy drove in a run for the Orioles, who bounced back from an 8-4 loss in the series opener on Friday. Fresh off the 15-day disabled list, Derrek Lee went 2-for-4 with two runs scored. Jake Arrieta (7-3) gave up three runs on five hits over six innings to pick up the win.ATLANTA -- A month ago, Jarred Cosart was a struggling pitcher on a team out of playoff contention. Now, he is trying to help Miami inch closer in the wild-card race. Cosart pitched seven effective innings, and the Marlins beat the Atlanta Braves 4-0 on Saturday night to stop a three-game losing streak. Cosart (3-1) allowed seven hits, struck out five and walked one. The right-hander, who was acquired in a July 31 trade with Houston, is 3-0 with a sparkling 0.65 ERA in his last four starts. "This was exactly what we needed," Marlins manager Mike Redmond said. "Some guys need that adrenaline. He wants it. He wants to help us get to the playoffs." Cosart struggled in July, giving up 19 runs in 21 1-3 innings, but he said the trade to Miami has energized him. "I took it as a slap in the face when I got traded from one of the worst organizations in baseball the last three years," he said. "No disrespect to the Astros, but hopefully one day I can make them feel like they got the bad end of that trade." Donovan Solano hit a solo homer in the first and finished with three hits for Miami, which is 8-7 against Atlanta this year. Giancarlo Stanton had two hits and drove in a run. Atlanta had won three in a row. Aaron Harang (10-9) yielded four runs, three earned, and seven hits in 5 2-3 innings. The Braves were one game out in the wild-card race at the start of the day. Atlanta threatened in the eighth inning, loading the bases with one out. But A.J. Ramos struck out Andrelton Simmons and Mike Dunn retired Freddie Freeman on a groundout to first, preserving Miamis 4-0 lead. Steve Cishek then got three outs for the Marlins, completing the nine-hitter. Cosart has provided a boost for the sagging Marlins since the trade. On Saturday, he induced three double plays to prevent the Braves from putting a rally together. Leading 4-0 in the sixth, Cosart faced his first serious jam of the night. The Braves put runners on first and second with one out, but Cosart struck out Simmons and got Freeman to ground to second to end the threat. "Its not often you see a guy, especially a starter, that throws that many cutters," Braves third baseman Chris Johnson said. "He was good at it, working it inside, outside. Its something weve got to get used too, him being in our division now, and work out a plan for the cutter. Tyrone Taylor Jersey . " Stanton singled in Christian Yelich to make it 2-0 in the third, and Yelich scored again on Solanos base hit in the fifth. Jarrod Saltalamacchia scored the fourth run on a wild pitch in the sixth. Cosart retired 10 straight after giving up a single to Jason Heyward to lead off the game. Four of those came on strikeouts, with Cosart striking out the side in the second. TRAINERS ROOM Marlins: Reliever Dan Jennings made his fourth minor league appearance on Friday since being diagnosed with a concussion on Aug. 8, pitching two scoreless innings. He has pitched seven scoreless innings in four rehab games. ... Reliever Bryan Morris will rejoin the team when it returns to Miami following the series. He has a strained groin but will not be placed on the disabled list. Braves: Reliever Shae Simmons said before the game he has not started throwing off flat ground. He has been on the disabled list since July 27 with a strained right shoulder. It does not appear he will return this season. UP NEXT The Braves and Marlins wrap up their three-game set on Sunday. Braves starter Alex Wood (9-10) has given up just 10 runs in his last six starts for a 2.23 ERA. Nathan Eovaldi (6-9) will take the mound for the Marlins. Eovaldi has faced the Braves four times already this season, limiting them to three runs in 21 innings in his first three starts before being reached for five runs in seven innings in a losing effort on July 23. SEPTEMBER CAN MEAN OCTOBER The last two seasons, the five teams in playoff position in the National League on Sept. 1 have been the five teams to qualify for the post-season. The last team not to make the post-season when in position at the beginning of September was the 2011 Braves, who lost their final five regular-season games. Both the Braves and Marlins currently trail the Cardinals and Giants for the two NL wild cards. FEELING TURNER FIELD Solano has eight career home runs in 280 games with the Marlins. Three have come at Turner Field and seven of the eight have been away from home. PENNY GETTING A START Redmond said veteran Brad Penny will start Tuesday against the Mets. It will be Pennys third start and fifth appearance since Miami brought him up from Triple-A in August. ' ' '