Sox star headed for Tommy John surgery?

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Sox star headed for Tommy John surgery?

From Comcast SportsNet
NEW YORK (AP) -- Carl Crawford appears to be headed for season-ending surgery on his left elbow. The Boston Red Sox said Sunday they planned to meet and decide the following day whether the left fielder will have Tommy John surgery. Citing an anonymous source, ESPN reported hours later that Crawford is expected to have the operation Tuesday. Crawford has been playing with pain since coming off the disabled list last month. He has said he's been told he will need Tommy John surgery at some point to repair the torn ulnar collateral ligament in his throwing arm. "Carl's given it everything he has. From everything I gather, the elbow situation is kind of trending in the wrong way," manager Bobby Valentine said Sunday night after a 4-1 loss to the New York Yankees. Crawford went 1 for 4 with a ninth-inning single, perhaps his final at-bat of the year. The Red Sox are off Monday. "We'll take that time to talk with Carl and the doctors and kind of get to the bottom of this entire situation," Valentine said before the game. Asked if the discussion would be about whether Crawford needs surgery at all or simply when he should have it, general manager Ben Cherington said: "A little of both." If he has the ligament-replacement surgery, it's estimated Crawford could return to the lineup six to nine months later. The fourth-place Red Sox are 59-63, leaving them 13 12 games behind the first-place Yankees in the AL East and 7 12 out in the wild-card race. "We'll focus the decision more on what's best for Carl," Cherington said. "What gives him the best chance to be the player that we know he can be for the longest period of time. "We've known surgery is a possibility if the symptoms didn't go away," the first-year GM added. "These conversations have been going on for months now. We know what the issue is." Crawford was a major disappointment last season, his first with Boston after signing a 142 million, seven-year contract. He missed the first 89 games of this season while recovering from left wrist surgery. He partially tore his elbow ligament in April while rehabbing, slowing his return. Crawford was activated from the disabled list July 16 and is batting .282 with three homers and 19 RBIs. He has 10 doubles and 13 extra-base hits in August. "He's played a lot and he's got a real injury," Cherington said. "He's played well. To his credit, he's played through this for the team." Crawford batted second and played left field Sunday night against Yankees right-hander Hiroki Kuroda. "He's probably undergoing surgery, right? It's not good. But you've got to do what you've got to do to be ready next year," injured teammate David Ortiz said. "You've got to take care of yourself. If you are injured, you're injured. Nobody gets Tommy John (surgery) because it's fun. Tommy John (surgery) is a tough process and he needs one because he needs one. If I'm him, I would do exactly what he's doing, taking care of it." NOTES: RHP John Lackey, rehabbing from Tommy John surgery, threw 45 pitches in the bullpen. "I was very impressed with what I saw," said Valentine, who did not rule out the possibility of Lackey pitching in the majors this season. Cherington said he fully expects Lackey will pitch in a "competitive environment" before the season ends, but that doesn't necessarily mean a big league game. ... Cherington said demoted RHP Daniel Bard will be back in the big leagues this year and the team will talk in the offseason about whether he should be used as a starter or reliever going forward. ... Minor league pitcher Brian Johnson was released from the hospital and Cherington said the left-hander was doing well after he was hit in the face with a line drive Saturday during the Future Games at Fenway Park. Johnson, a first-round draft pick in June, sustained multiple orbital bone fractures on the left side of his face, but there were no signs of a concussion.

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Need to Know: Redskins stay in house for both coordinator jobs

Need to Know: Redskins stay in house for both coordinator jobs

Here is what you need to know on this Monday, January 23, 37 days before the NFL franchise tag deadline.

Timeline

Days until:

NFL free agency starts 45
—NFL Draft 94
First Sunday of 2017 season 230

Staying in house

­There are reasons to dislike the hire of Greg Manusky as defensive coordinator but the notion that he got the job because he is buddies with Jay Gruden really doesn’t hold water. They had no connection prior to last year and with them working on opposite sides of the ball they didn’t work side by side. I’ve heard the two have a friendly relationship but it’s not like he’s out of the Tampa Bay Yacht Club or anything.

I know that everyone is obsessed with yardage rankings, which is a pretty weak indicator of the quality of a defense. Since you want to know, in Manusky’s nine seasons as a defensive coordinator his defenses have finished ranked 18th in yards allowed on average. In reality, Football Outsiders’  DVOA is a more accurate measure of the effectiveness of a defense since it takes the strength of the opponents into account. There isn’t much difference there, Manusky’s average DVOA ranking was about 17. In other words, he’s run middle of the pack defenses. Sure, you'd like them to do better but having a defense that's around average would represent an improvement over most of the last seven seasons.

How has his talent been? Three different players have been first-team All-Pro selections. LB Patrick Willis made it three times, S Eric Weddle and DE Robert Mathias once each. Players under him made the Pro Bowl 13 times with Willis (3), Mathis (2), and DE Justin Smith (2) making it more than once. His defenses had three Pro Bowlers on one occasion when LB D’Qwell Jackson, CB Vonta Davia, and S Mike Adams all made it. That year the Colts defense was ranked 11th in yards and 13th in DVOA.

It remains to be seen how much the Redskins will change schematically. Manusky has run both 4-3 fronts and 3-4’s so the Redskins could make a switch. Even if they go with a 3-4 base the unit is likely to be more aggressive than it was under Joe Barry. Some fans seem to be worried that promoting an assistant coach means that thinks will be done the same. Let me ask you this: If your boss was fired for not getting the job done and you were promoted into his position, would you do things the same way he did? I didn’t think so.

­There will be continuity on the offensive side of the ball as Matt Cavanaugh is going to get moved into the offensive coordinator job. It’s Gruden’s offense anyway so there would not have been much change even if they had brought someone in from the outside. It seems likely that Gruden will call the plays, although we won’t know for sure for a while. The only immediate question on that side of the ball is if Wes Phillips will stay on as the tight ends coach or if he will follow Sean McVay to Los Angeles. That should be resolved over the next several days.

Tandler on Twitter

This was in response to a tweet saying that Kyle Shanahan is likely to get roster and personnel control when he becomes the head coac of the 49ers.

In case you missed it

Stay up to date on the Redskins! Rich Tandler covers the team 365 days a year. Like his Facebook page www.Facebook.com/RealRedskins and follow him on Twitter @Rich_TandlerCSN.

Virginia Tech deals Clemson its 6th consecutive ACC loss

Virginia Tech deals Clemson its 6th consecutive ACC loss

CLEMSON, S.C. — Seth Allen scored 15 of his 17 points in the second half as hot-shooting Virginia Tech held off Clemson 82-81 on Sunday, sending the Tigers to their sixth straight Atlantic Coast Conference loss.

The Hokies (15-4, 4-3 ACC) shot 60.9 percent (14 of 23) in the second half and 54.7 percent overall to win for the third time in the past four games. Allen made five of his six shots — including three 3-pointers — in the final 20 minutes and had a critical steal with 90 seconds left to keep Virginia Tech out front.

The Tigers (11-8, 1-6) appeared to take the lead down 70-69 as Jaron Blossomgame's shot with 3:48 left was rolling around and ready to fall in when teammate Sidy Djitte, attempting a tip in, knocked it away.

Chris Clarke soon followed with a three-point play and Allen hit a crushing 3-pointer with 29 seconds left to seal things for the Hokies.

Clemson got within 80-78 with 5.9 seconds left on Blossomgame's 3-pointer. But Justin Bibbs hit two foul shots to seal things.

Blossomgame and Avry Holmes had 20 points each for Clemson, whose ACC losing streak is its longest since dropping seven straight to end the 2012-13 season.

Holmes hit a 3-pointer for Clemson as time ran out to end the scoring.

Zach LeDay had 16 points and Ahmed Hill had 11 for the Hokies.

MORE NCAA: Georgetown is back on a losing streak