Play continues at storm-delayed AT&T National

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Play continues at storm-delayed AT&T National

The third round of the AT&T National has been pushed back due to the powerful storms that wreaked havoc and caused widespread power outages across the Washington D.C. area Friday night.
PGA Tour and tournament officials are aiming for a two-tee start at 1 p.m., but the course will be closed to spectators and volunteers for safety reasons. Play had been scheduled to start at 7:10 a.m.

It was really a mess out there, said Mark Russell, the PGA Tours vice president of rules and competition, speaking as the sound of chainsaws echoed throughout Congressional Country Club. Ive never seen anything like this. Its like a tornado came through here.
According to Stewart Williams of Telvent DTN, the PGAs senior meteorologist, the course received three-tenths of an inch of rain, but winds from a fast-moving derecho gusted to 70 mph around 10:30 p.m. Friday, downing as many as 40 trees at the Bethesda club, disrupting power and obstructing many roads leading to the entrance.
It was all straight line winds, said Williams, who also warned of the possibility of more severe storms Saturday evening. The heat had a lot to do with. Thats what fueled the momentum to keep it going and build on itself.
Efforts to clear fallen trees, branches and other debris began late Friday night and continued Saturday morning.
Trees fell across the fairways on holes No. 14 and 18, according to Russell. But the course was spared major damage because none of the greens were damaged.
The golf course is going to be fine, Russell said. Inside the ropes is going to be good. The periphery is a mess.
Russell also said there will be a rules meeting at noon.
Were going to take a look and see what all they can get cleaned upand see how were going to play, he said. Powerful removal, were probably will have to use that rule a little more than we usually do. Theres a lot of debris out there.
If the third round begins on time, tournament host Tiger Woods will tee off at 2:40 and leaders Hunter Mahan, Brendon de Jonge and Jimmy Walker will begin at 3:10.
The decision to ban fans and volunteers was made for safety reasons.
Its just too dangerous out here, Russell said. There are a lot of hanging limbs, a lot of debris a lot of places. We just didnt think it would be safe to get a lot of people out here. Its unfortunate, but thats just the way we have to go to protect the public.
Tickets for Saturdays round will be honored on Sunday assuming power can be restored and the spectator areas can be cleared.
Its going to take a long time to clean this up, Russell said.
Asked whether he anticipates allowing fans on the course Sunday, he added, We hope we can do that.

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Running back Marshall expected to miss 3 weeks with elbow injury

Running back Marshall expected to miss 3 weeks with elbow injury

Rookie running back Keith Marshall is expected to miss three weeks after suffering a strained elbow in Friday's preseason game.

Marshall was scheduled to have an MRI exam on Saturday. While there has been no official word from the team as to the severity of Marshall's injury, CSN's Chick Hernandez is reporting he will be re-evaluated in three weeks.

RELATED: COMFORT THE KEY TO SMITH'S PURSUIT OF A BIG SEASON

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Lucas Giolito's velocity remains down, but he and Nats aren't worried

Lucas Giolito's velocity remains down, but he and Nats aren't worried

Through Lucas Giolito's first four big league starts, there has been something noticeably off from what we've seen and heard over the years about what makes him one of the top prospects in all of baseball. His fastball is supposed to sit comfortably in the high-90s and occasionally touch triple digits. From his arm angle at 6-foot-6, and countered with his hooking curveball, his fastball was a big reason scouts say he has superstar potential.

He could very well still become one of the game's best pitchers, but the Nats' rookie remains a work in progress and his fastball is currently nowhere near as fast as it once was. On Sunday against the Colorado Rockies, Giolito sat consistently around 93 miles per hour. That's not bad at all, but it's a far cry from the prodigious speed he used to have.

We've heard manager Dusty Baker offer his theories and so far he's downplayed it as not being a concern. On Sunday, we heard for the first time from Giolito himself on the subject, as well as from his opponents.

Here is what Giolito had to say:

"I can pitch at 93 if I’m hitting my spots and mixing up well. I think I left way too many fastballs up over the middle of the plate. Those are the ones that got hit pretty hard. So, the velocity I don’t think is a huge deal as long as I’m pitching the way I should be pitching."

Rockies star third baseman Nolan Arenado, who homered and landed an RBI single off Giolito, offered his take on the velocity dip.

"The reports you read about him say he throws about 95, 97. Those are the reports we saw and on video. It wasn't that," he said. "It doesn't matter. His length, the ball kind of gets on you, has a little jump to it. He's so tall, so big. It's not a comfortable at-bat," Arenado said.

Rockies manager Walt Weiss said that despite the results and the velocity, he can see why there was so much hype around Giolito.

“The future is bright, for sure,” Weiss said. “Big kid, big time arm. He showed a really good breaking ball and threw some good changeups to go with a power fastball. I have heard a lot about him, going back to when he was in high school, and for good reason."

Giolito remains a big part of the Nats' future plans, but at this point in his career he is a raw talent. He's still building confidence with his changeup and working on the command of his curveball. And now he's trying to learn how to pitch with a fastball that's not as lethal as it once was.

That's a tough situation for a young pitcher who doesn't have the experience a veteran would have to draw from.

"I’ve been pitching a lot better [at Triple-A] and figuring some stuff out. Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to execute on a few pitches today," Giolito said after Sunday's 5-3 loss. "The only thing I can do is continue to work and try to get better about living down the zone, getting ahead of guys, and then throwing all my pitches for strikes and putting guys away."

Giolito still showed promise on Sunday with a career-high five innings pitched. But the swing-and-miss stuff that he's shown over the years as a prospect has yet to follow him to the majors.

"We haven't seen it yet at the major league level," Baker said. "His fastball is relatively straight, so you've gotta locate it well. Hopefully it will get better."

[RELATED: Giolito decent, but Nats offense falls short in loss to Colorado Rockies]

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4-star DeMatha OL Marcus Minor commits to the Maryland Terrapins

4-star DeMatha OL Marcus Minor commits to the Maryland Terrapins

Four-star DeMatha Catholic OL Marcus Minor has committed to Maryland, he announced during the 6 p.m. edition of SportsNet Central on CSN.

Minor becomes the 16th player committed to the Terrapins in the class of 2017. He is the next in a line of DeMatha players pledging to play in College Park, joining players that include DJ Turner, Tino Ellis, Terrance Davis, and Lorenzo Harrison.

Watch his commitment above.

Stay tuned for more...