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10/11/2010 - 9:22pm
Giants advance past Braves, Cox

The celebrated managerial career of Bobby Cox came to an end, driven in part by a Braves defense that was a constant weakness in the Division Series and also by the deference of the Braves skipper to one of his players.

 

Cox and the Braves were eliminated from the postseason by the Giants, who claimed a 3-2 victory in Game 4 to clinch the best-of-five Division Series between the two clubs. Atlanta led, 2-1, entering the top of the seventh inning, on a night when starter Derek Lowe -- pitching on three days' rest -- was largely overpowering.

 

Through 6 1/3 innings, Lowe had allowed just one hit (a Cody Ross solo homer in the sixth) while striking out eight. But with one out in the seventh, he allowed a walk and an infield single, prompting Cox to head to the mound for what looked like a pitching change. But Lowe was adamant about his desire to stay in the game, and Cox left him on the hill. Lowe promptly issued a five-pitch...

10/11/2010 - 8:25pm
Patriots acquire Branch for fourth-rounder

The Patriots have acquired wide receiver Deion Branch for a fourth-round draft pick in 2011. ESPN's Adam Schefter was first to report the deal. 

Branch, who was a second-round pick of the Patriots in 2002 out of Louisville, spent the first four years of his career with New England and developed a tight bond with quarterback Tom Brady. He had 213 catches in four seasons in New England, and finished Super Bowl XXXIX with 11 catches to take home MVP honors in the Patriots’ win over Philadelphia.

However, Branch and the Patriots became embroiled in a contract dispute, and New England shipped Branch to Seattle for a first-round pick in the 2007 draft. But the recent trade of Randy Moss to the Vikings clearly opened up a slot for Branch to return to the Patriots.

The 31-year-old has 13 catches for 112 yards and a touchdown through four games with the Seahawks this season.

For more Patriots news, check out...

10/11/2010 - 7:25pm
Branch excused from Seahawks practice

Time to crank up those Deion Branch trade rumors again.

The former Patriot and current Seattle wide receiver missed Monday’s practice to take a personal day off, according to Seahawks coach Pete Carroll, who said the expectation is that Branch will be with the team Wednesday when the Seahawks begin game planning for Sunday’s game against Chicago.

But even an excused absence is enough to raise eyebrows when it comes to the 5-foot-9, 193-pound Branch, who has been the subject of trade rumors that could bring him back to New England sooner rather than later.

Branch, who was a second-round pick of the Patriots in 2002 out of Louisville, spent the first four years of his career with New England and developed a tight bond with quarterback Tom Brady. He had 213 catches in four seasons in New England, and finished Super Bowl XXXIX with 11 catches to take home MVP honors in the Patriots’ win over Philadelphia....

10/11/2010 - 5:17pm
Report: Damon 'would love' return to Yanks

According to the New York Post, outfielder Johnny Damon has been told by the Tigers that he is not in their plans for the 2011 season. Damon signed a one-year, $8 million deal with the Tigers last offseason. In August, the Red Sox claimed Damon on waivers, but the former Boston icon said that he would exercise his right to veto a deal rather than come back to the Sox.

 

At the time, Damon cited his loyalty to the Tigers, and his hope that he would be a part of their plans for both 2010 and beyond. But, according to the Post, the Tigers have informed the 36-year-old that they will go in a different direction.

 

"They told me they are looking for a prototypical type DH like Adam Dunn," Damon told the paper. "They said they need that type of bat in the middle of order. I am a No. 1...

10/11/2010 - 4:54pm
Belichick on Big Show: 'We'll be competitive'

Patriots head coach Bill Belichcik joined the Big Show on Monday to discuss the coming game against the Ravens, his team's efforts to elicit turnovers from opponents and the quick integration by running back Danny Woodhead into the offensive blueprint. He also discussed further the decision to trade wide receiver Randy Moss to the Vikings. 

 

"When you put it all together, that’s kind of how it came out. In the end, I just felt like that was the best thing to do," said Belichick. "I never personally talked to [the Vikings]. They had shown some interest a long time ago. It came up kind of more recently, and we followed through on it."

 

Belichick said that the emergence of more receiving weapons in the form of players such as tight ends Aaron Hernandez and Rob Gronkowski "might have been a little bit of a factor" in the willingness to move Moss (and a seventh-round pick) for a third...

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