Scoring outage haunts Mystics during losing stretch

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Scoring outage haunts Mystics during losing stretch

After recent games against the Storm and Sun, after a brutal weather system pounded the D.C. metropolitan area this weekend and with the temperatures remaining in the unbearable range, it almost seems appropriate that the struggling Washington Mystics find the Mercury next on the schedule. The Mystics (2-10) returned home following a three straight road losses, but the Verizon Center has been no magic elixir halfway for the WNBA's lowest scoring team midway through their four game homestand. Now after losses to Seattle by eight points and Connecticut by 13, Washington faces Phoenix (4-9) on Sunday (1 p.m.) in a rematch from earlier this month, yet another result that went the wrong way for Coach Trudi Laceys squad.The latest setback Washington has lost nine of 10 games - came Friday night. Trailing by four points at halftime, the Mystics offense powered down upon returning to the court, unable to score during the opening 4:20 of the third quarter. In that stretch the Sun pulled away with a 12-0 run and outscored the Mystics 27-12 in the quarter for a 63-44 lead. When you dont make shots, its a little deflating, Lacey said. We came out missed a couple of shots and turned the ball over. It takes us out of our offensive rhythm. There are two things we have to do. We have to play with energy all the time and we have to take care of the basketball.The low scoring Mystics - 68.4 points per contest on the season and 63.3over its last three games - also need to even out the recent free throw line imbalance.The Mystics have taken 22 fewer attempts in the two losses while beingoutscored at the charity stripe 51-27. Monique Currie scored 20 points in the earlier meeting against the Mercury. That output represented her season-high until the Mystics small forward tallied 21 points against the Sun, sinking two 3-pointers. Over her last four games, the former Bullis star has made half her shots (7 of 14) from beyond the arc. Washington will need more of that deep accuracy - plus steady effort throughout for a winning effort against the Mercury.We need to be more consistent, coming out in the second half ready to fight and ready to play; we just need to leave it all out there, Currie said following Fridays loss. We need to be more confident and aggressive. Teams are coming in here and theyre being the aggressive ones. The Sun came out after halftime and they hit us first.The shorthanded Mercury are coming off an impressive 84-81 win in Chicago on Friday despite suiting up only eight players. DeWanna Bonner, the WNBAs third-leading scorer (20.4), paced four double-digit scorers with 27 points. On June 20, Bonner played the entire 40 minutes and scored a team-high 19 points in an 80-77 win over the Mystics. The 6-foot-4 wing drained a clutch 3-pointer during a frantic comeback as Washington let a five-point lead slip away over the games final two minutes and 26 seconds. Crystal Langhorne led the Mystics with 21 points.Despite the win in Chicago, the Mercury have lose six of eight road games this season playing without injured star Diana Taurasi (hip flexor). Washingtons only two victories have come at home, along with five losses.

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Orioles place Ubaldo Jimenez on paternity list

Orioles place Ubaldo Jimenez on paternity list

BALTIMORE—The Orioles placed right-handed pitcher Ubaldo Jimenez on the paternity list shortly before Saturday night’s game. 

Jimenez was at the hospital with his wife, who is delivering the couple’s first child. He hasn’t pitched since July 8. He will be on the paternity list for three days.  

With Vance Worley pitching on Sunday and Odrisamer Despaigne unavailable because he pitched 3 2/3 innings on Friday night, the Orioles recalled Tyler Wilson from Norfolk to serve as the team’s long man for Saturday night’s game. 

Wilson, who was sent to Norfolk on July 3, is 4-6 with a 5.22 ERA in 16 games with the Orioles. In two games with the Tides, Wilson allowed six runs on 12 hits in 5 1/3 innings. 

Matt Wieters remains out of the starting lineup for the fifth straight game, and Caleb Joseph gets the start. Wieters bruised his right foot when he was hit by a pitch in Monday night’s game. 

MORE ORIOLES: DUQUETTE REITERATES BIGGER GOAL AS DEADLINE LOOMS

“I think they’ve done the MRI,” Showalter said. “They’ve done everything. They know what they’re dealing with. I’ll be frank with you, I’m hoping Monday. I was really hoping to not have to do that night game, day game with Caleb [Joseph on Saturday and Sunday], but we’ll see. If I have to put him in there emergency, then we may look at it differently depending on how he feels.”

Showalter said that he’s not afraid of using Joseph in six straight games because with a month’s rest due to his testicular surgery in late May, he’s fresher than he normally would be. 

Hyun Soo Kim, who could be activated from the 15-day disabled list on Tuesday, will begin a two-day rehab assignment at Bowie on Sunday. Kim is on the disabled list with a strained right hamstring. 

T.J. McFarland (left knee) is getting close to throwing from the mound. McFarland has been throwing from 90-120 feet in Sarasota, Fla. 

Showalter said that Brian Duensing (left elbow), who is on the 60-day disabled list, is progressing. 

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Nats name Giolito as Sunday starter vs. Padres, Ross to rehab soon

Nats name Giolito as Sunday starter vs. Padres, Ross to rehab soon

The mystery of who will pitch the series finale for the Nationals against the Padres on Sunday is over, as manager Dusty Baker revealed the team's plans to call up top prospect Lucas Giolito to make his third career MLB start.

With Giolito on his way to Washington, the Nationals will have to determine a corresponding move. And three players - Ryan Zimmerman, Joe Ross and Sammy Solis - all nearing their returns from the disabled list, there could be a lot of shuffling on the Nats' roster in the coming days and weeks.

Giolito, 22, joins the Nats after making one start at Triple-A Syracuse. Through two big league starts this season he has a 4.70 ERA across 7 2/3 innings. Both of his outings came against the New York Mets.

Zimmerman (left ribcage strain) has made two rehab appearances with the Single-A Potomac Nationals. He went 2-for-4 with a double in his first game and 1-for-5 with two RBI and a run in his second. He was set to play his third game with the P-Nats on Saturday evening.

Solis also played with Potomac on Friday night and struck out three in a scoreless inning. He will now move on to Single-A Hagerstown to continue his rehab back from right knee inflammation.

"Solis, he pitched yesterday and said it went well. He's going to throw again tomorrow," Baker said. "Him and Joe are both going to throw at Hagerstown. We'll keep our fingers crossed that that works out well, too."

Ross will be making his first rehab appearance with Hagerstown on Sunday as he works his way back from right shoulder inflammation. He has been on the disabled list since July 3.

The Nationals chose Giolito to start over Reynaldo Lopez, one of their other hard-throwing prospects. Lopez pitched against the Dodgers on Tuesday and gave up six earned runs in 4 2/3 innings.

Lopez was brought up to replace Giolito's spot in the rotation for his July 19 debut after the Nats determined Giolito needed more work in the minors. They sent him to Syracuse hoping he could work on his fastball command and his curveball. Giolito responded with 6 2/3 innings and only one unearned run in his lone outing in Triple-A.

[RELATED: Nats' Trea Turner on his speed and how he got so fast]

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O'Day recaps Bowie rehab trip, doesn't think another is needed

O'Day recaps Bowie rehab trip, doesn't think another is needed

BALTIMORE—Darren O’Day wasn’t impressed with the uniforms worn by the Baysox to honor David Bowie on Friday night.

“I wore a pretty bad jersey, probably the worst jersey I ever wore,” O’Day said. 

While wearing that jersey for an inning, O’Day struck out two and allowed a hit while pitching for Bowie

“The outing was good. I felt good. I got to execute most of my pitches. It felt good to get back out there. I had a baserunner, so that was good,” O’Day said. “Altogether positive.” 

O’Day, who has been on the 15-day disabled list since June 3 with a strained right hamstring, thinks that is the only rehab assignment he’ll need before returning to the Orioles. 

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“I hope so,” O’Day said. He’ll talk with Dan Duquette, Buck Showalter and the trainers. “My delivery was in a good place. I was making a lot of good pitches. Everything was moving like it should.” 

Meanwhile, Joey Rickard will be in a splint for the next three weeks to rest the injured ligament in his right thumb. Rickard will probably not be able to play until September. Surgery is not required. 

“As soon as possible. My goal is to beat whatever they told me by whatever I can, so I’m going to do everything in my power to make sure that happens,” Rickard said. 

Showalter said that Rickard would stay in Baltimore and not go to Sarasota since there wasn’t anything he could do there that he couldn’t do here. He won’t travel with the Orioles, Showalter said.