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makes a big deal about being No. 1 on the FedEx 
By krstking2 on Jun 10, 2014 06:51 AM
MINNEAPOLIS -- The Minnesota Twins entered the off-season with a desperate need for starting pitching, and theyre off to a pretty great start in addressing it. wholesale nfl jerseys . Right-hander Ricky Nolasco and the Twins agreed to terms on a free-agent contract Wednesday, a person with knowledge of the deal told The Associated Press. The person requested anonymity because the team does not plan to announce a deal until Nolasco passes a physical. Terms of the deal were not immediately available, but Yahoo! Sports reported that it was for four years and $49 million. Thats a hefty price for the Twins, who historically have been reluctant to hand out big-money deals to free agents. Prior to Nolascos contract, the most the Twins had spent on a free agent who did not come through their system was the three-year, $21 million deal they gave Josh Willingham in 2011. But their need was acute and Nolasco was widely considered one of the top available free agents in a thin crop of starting pitchers. Hes walked just 2.1 hitters per nine innings for his career, which makes him a perfect fit for the Twins, who have always placed a premium on control from their starters. Pitching to contact has become a bit of a sore spot for Twins fans, who have watched their teams starting staff get bludgeoned while throwing strike after strike right down the middle. But Nolasco also has a healthy 7.4 strikeouts per nine innings, and hes shown the ability to get out of jams without letting the hitter put the ball in play. Nolascos Twitter account already has a Twins logo as its avatar, and this beleaguered team will no doubt be just as eager to welcome him into the fold. Nolasco pitched at least 185 innings in five of the last six seasons and will immediately slot in right near the top of what was the worst pitching staff in the majors last year. The Twins have lost at least 96 games in each of the last three seasons, thanks in most part to their woeful starting pitching. Last year the starters had an ERA of 5.26. Toronto was the next worse at 4.81. Only two of their starters had ERAs under 5.00, with Samuel Dedunos 3.83 leading the way and Kevin Correias pedestrian 4.18 next. The Twins have also inquired about veteran Bronson Arroyo among other available arms, and are expected to continue adding players to beef up the rotation. Matt Garza and Phil Hughes are among the other viable options, and the Twins also could bring back Mike Pelfrey for depth. cheap jerseys . The Raptors, fresh off an opening night victory over the Celtics, had plenty to digest after barely coming away with a win the night before. wholesale jerseys . The Brazilian international goalkeeper was beaten twice in the first 12 minutes of his Reds debut in a 3-1 preseason loss to Columbus Crew in Florida earlier this week.HONOLULU -- Jimmy Walker, an astronomy fanatic and now a two-time winner on the PGA Tour, gazed through a glass window across the room to a television that showed his most recent photo of Orions Sword. Walker toiled on the PGA Tour for seven years and 187 tournaments without winning. Now it appears the stars have aligned for him. That certainly was the case Sunday in the Sony Open. In a wild final round, where four players were in the mix with an hour to go, Walker followed a clutch par save with three straight birdies to pull away from the pack. He closed with a 7-under 63 for a one-shot victory over Chris Kirk. Thats two wins in six starts for Walker. And while its still only the middle of January, hes No. 1 in the Ryder Cup standings. "It took me a long time to do it," Walker said. "I felt very calm and controlled. Thats what youve got to feel and do when its time to win. Its easy to say, hard to do. But today was awesome. Really cool golf." This wasnt easy. Walkers big run began with a 12-foot par on the 14th hole. One shot behind Harris English, Walker rolled in a 15-foot birdie putt on the 15th hole, and took the outright lead when English -- behind him in the final group -- failed to save par from a bunker. Walker made a 7-foot birdie putt on the 16th, and then hit 7-iron into 6 feet for birdie on the par-3 17th. A par on the last hole made him wait just a little bit longer. Kirk had a 30-foot eagle chip from just short of the green on the par-5 18th that would have forced a playoff. It stayed right of the hole, and Kirk made the birdie putt for a 66 to finish alone in second place. "I feel like I hit the ball well enough to win this week, but it doesnt always work out that way," Kirk said. Jerry Kelly (65) was alone in third. English never recovered from his bogey. He missed birdie putts on the last three holes for a 67. Walker won the Frys.com Open in October, the first tournament of the new wraparound season. As the first multiple winner for the 2013-14 season, he is leading the FedEx Cup and closing in on cracking the top 30 in the world. Walker finished at 17-under 263 and earned $1.08 million. He already qualified for his first Masters by winning in October. Now hes piling up the wins. "Ive always felt like I belonged, and you need affirmation every now and then," he said. cheap jerseys from china. "The other win was like, Yeah, OK, I can do it. I did it, and I was supposed to be able to do it. Everybody told me I was supposed to do it, and I finally did it. And then its, Well, are you going to be the guy that won that you never hear from again? Its nice to get it done and do it again today." With so many players in contention, the key was to keep bogeys off the card. Walker had made at least two bogeys in each of the three previous rounds, and it looked as if he was headed for one at the wrong time on the 14th hole when he chipped from an awkward stance near the bunker to about 12 feet. Kelly missed a 15-foot par putt from the same line, and Walker poured it in. And then, he was off to the races. Masters champion Adam Scott went out in 30 and was one shot out of the lead just as the final group was starting play. Scott hit too many poor drives to keep it going, and the way the final two groups played the back nine, it wouldnt have mattered. Scott tied for eighth (seven shots behind), and after a tie for sixth last week at Kapalua, heads into a six-week hibernation before returning to golf in Florida. The three players with the best shots at winning all won last fall in the early part of the wraparound season -- Kirk at the McGladrey Classic, English in Mexico. New year, same season. "Guys get into grooves and theyve all been playing really well," Walker said. "I think its cool. Everybody makes a big deal about being No. 1 on the FedEx and stuff, and it is cool and it is a big deal. ... I know its January. Its a long way to September, and every little bit helps." Kirk, who had a one-shot lead going into the final round, made birdie on the 17th hole to stay within two shots of the lead and at least entertain the idea of eagle. His approach out of the rough needed about two more hops on the firm turf at Waialae to get on the green. English ran off two birdies around the turn, took the outright lead with an 8-foot birdie on the 14th, and that was as close as he got. "Just started hitting it better, but started putting a little worse," English said. David Hearn of Brantford, Ont., finished in a tie for 38th, closing with a 69 for a 6-under total of 274. ' ' '
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