Baseball America released its annual list of Top 100 Prospects last month, tabbing Minnesota Twins outfielder Byron Buxton as the best emerging talent in baseball. But what can you expect out of the No. 1 prospect — or Nos. 2 through 100, for that matter?I gathered data on Baseball America’s historical Top 100 lists back to 1990 and tracked how many wins above replacement (WAR) each player generated over the seven seasons after each list was released. (A team has control of its players for the first six years of their careers, according to service time, but not every prospect’s clock starts ticking the same year he’s ranked by Baseball America.)For example, Baseball America’s No. 1 slot gets 46 WAR from 1995’s top prospect, Alex Rodriguez. But the top spot loses 1.9 WAR from Todd Van Poppel, one of the game’s all-time biggest busts. Among 18 players from 1990 to 2007, the average for Baseball America’s top spot was nearly 20 WAR.Do this for all 100 slots, and you arrive at an average, early-career WAR total for each ranking. It’s not a perfectly smooth drop-off from each spot to the next — for instance, the average at No. 10 (15.5 WAR) was quite a bit higher than the average at No. 5 (9.3) — but overall, the shape of the list’s average WAR resembles a logarithmic curve. In other words, a disproportionate amount of WAR is generated by the top handful of prospects.The expected future value of a guy like Buxton is about 17 WAR over the next seven seasons (that’s 2.5 WAR per year, which would be solid for a starter but something less than an All-Star on average). If that number seems low, it’s because Baseball America’s top prospects, from A-Rod to Van Poppel, have been all over the place. This underscores the difficulty Baseball America, or any scouting organization, faces when trying to project the future for 20-year-old prospects, as even the most promising talents have a history of flaming out.
LeBron James became the youngest player in NBA history with 20,000 points Wednesday night, and, barring injury, it will be just one of many milestones to come for the Miami Heat superstar widely regarded as the best player in the world.James authored a gem in leading the Heat’s 92-75 blowout victory over the Golden State Warriors: 25 points, 10 assists and seven rebounds in just 30 minutes in securing his latest piece of history.James’ short jumper with 2:45 left in the second quarter was the history-making play. The previous youngest to score 20,000 points was Los Angeles Lakers guard Kobe Bryant, who was 29 years, 122 days old. James was 28 years, 17 days on Wednesday.“It means everything,” James said. “It means a lot. First of all, like I continue to say, it means I’ve been able to be healthy. To be out on the floor and do what I love to do, I love the game of basketball and I try to give everything to the game. And hopefully it continues to give back to me.”In the first quarter, James also found Wade for his 5,000th career assist. He is the 13th player with 20,000 points and 5,000 assists.James eclipsed both marks before halftime and helped Miami go ahead by 34 points in the third quarter. Dwyane Wade added 15 points, eight rebounds and six assists and Mario Chalmers scored 15 for the Heat, who had lost three of their last four road games.The Warriors, who beat the Heat 97-95 in Miami on Dec. 12, lost consecutive games for only the third time this season. Clearly, James and Co. went into the game focused on making amends for that defeat.“Disappointing, but we faced a team that remembered what took place in South Beach and came with a mindset to make a point, individually and collectively,” Warriors coach Mark Jackson said. “That’s what great players do.”
The only task 49ers Tarell Brown had to complete was working out with his team: lift some weights, run some sprints, go through some drills. With the workout program complete, the San Francisco 49ers would have had to pay the starting cornerback $2 million extra in base salary, thanks to a clause in his contract.But he didn’t do that, and the blame falls on his agent Brian Overstreet.Overstreet never informed his client that to receive the $2 million, he was contractually obligated to work out with the Niners during their offseason program. So because Brown didn’t honor his contract, he forfeits the money and instead will make $925,000.Brown, understandably upset, swiftly fired the agent.
Puerto Rico1380.67 Chinese Taipei39-3.26 American fans like to think of the U.S. as the home of baseball; they even tried to mythologize it into the game’s place of origin at one point. And, yes, the majority of the game’s best players are from America. But in the World Baseball Classic, arguably the highest-profile event in international baseball, the U.S. is merely ordinary: It’s 10-10 over the tournament’s history, despite playing a relatively weak slate of opponents over the years. What gives?The WBC has always held more appeal for international players and fans, whose national teams take it far more seriously than the U.S. team does. The U.S. seldom sends its best players to the event, for better (it reduces the risk of key injuries in games that are essentially treated as exhibitions) and worse (it deprives the game of its best players playing on a worldwide stage). That means we won’t be seeing the likes of Bryce Harper and Clayton Kershaw in this year’s Classic, much less living legend Mike Trout.As a result, the U.S. has gotten mediocre results on the field, far from what might be expected out of a country that still considers itself baseball’s standard-bearer. To get a schedule-adjusted ranking of how countries have performed at the four World Baseball Classics,1Including 2017’s games, as of March 8. I calculated Sports-Reference’s Simple Rating System (SRS) for every WBC game since the event began in 2006.2A few more details: I gave more weight to games that took place in later rounds (first-round games had a weight of 1, second-round games a weight of 2, WBC semifinals a weight of 4 and WBC finals a weight of 8.) I also used a home-field advantage term of +0.16 runs per game, matching what it is in MLB since 2006. Among the 13 teams that have played double-digit WBC games, the U.S. ranks just seventh — far behind No. 1 Japan, who has dominated the tournament more than any other country. Mexico69-2.05 Japan — not the U.S. — dominates the World Baseball Classic Japan1973.40 Venezuela107-0.22 Italy47-1.49 United States1010-0.41 COUNTRYWINSLOSSESWEIGHTED SRS Cuba1480.67 Australia19-3.73 Dominican Republic1441.49 Netherlands910-1.20 Teams are ranked according to the Simple Rating System (SRS) for all WBC games since 2006, with extra weight applied to games in later rounds.Source: Wikipedia South Korea1471.79 China28-6.12 National pastime or not, America’s unexceptionalism probably won’t improve until the U.S. starts treating the WBC less like an exhibition event, and more like the international showcase other countries already think it is. Share on Facebook
The Rose Bowl isn’t the National Championship, but playing in the oldest, most prestigious bowl is a tradition that every Big Ten and Pac-10 team dreams of.The Ohio State Buckeyes are one win away from realizing that dream, but must first knock off the Iowa Hawkeyes on Saturday. An OSU win will cement a record fifth consecutive conference title and the Buckeyes will certainly smell the roses.OSU Coach Jim Tressel knows just how much the game means. He said that on Saturday, both teams will know what will be on the line.“I think it would be hard if you have the opportunity to earn a chance to play in that bowl game to minimize the excitement of that,” Tressel said. “We haven’t gone in a long time. It’s an important thing to Ohio State. It’s an important thing to Iowa. I’m not sure what year was the last time they went, but it’s a big deal.”“The Granddaddy of Them All,” as the Rose Bowl has come to be known, is a spectacle filled with tradition, a parade and a fierce inter-conference rivalry.The Big Ten and Pac-10 send their best teams to play on Jan. 1, but surprisingly, the Rose Bowl always seems to escape the Buckeyes’ grasp. Ohio State has only played in the Rose Bowl three times in the last 30 years. Their last appearance in 1997 was an instant classic with the Buckeyes winning on a late touchdown against previously undefeated Arizona State.Since the inception of the Bowl Championship Series in 1998, the Buckeyes would have sent three teams to the prestigious bowl: 2002, 2006 and 2007 would have all been Rose Bowl years, but instead, OSU played for a national championship.In 2007, OSU lost to Illinois in the penultimate game of the season. The following week, after a win over Michigan and another Big Ten title, the roses were brought out and the Buckeyes celebrated what was believed to be a bid to the big game.However, due to several upsets the Buckeyes climbed from No. 7 to No. 1 without playing another game and instead went to the National Championship against LSU.“We were real excited to win another Big Ten championship and get the chance to go to the Rose Bowl,” senior tight end Jake Ballard said about the 2007 victory. “It was thrilling, we hadn’t been to the Rose Bowl in 10, now 12 years. We were just looking forward to going.”The BCS title game might have more at stake, but as a Big Ten school, the Rose Bowl is what a team plays for. Its tradition and pageantry cannot be rivaled. Tressel even got a bit nostalgic when talking about New Year’s Day’s most sacred game.“Jan. 1 in our house, two black-and-white TVs set up side by side, that old 30-pot coffee … my dad never got off the couch, man, we were taking him coffee and switching stations. I mean, that was — shoot, you were living on Jan. 1,” Tressel said with a smile. “That was it for the year, by the way.”Recently, the Rose Bowl hasn’t been a proud event for the Big Ten. The conference representative has been blown out by USC the last three years and hasn’t won the bowl since 2000.“The Rose Bowl is everything, it is where college football is at; … what it’s all about,” Ballard said. “Everybody wants to go there, everyone wants to play in that game. Ohio State has a long history in the Rose Bowl and we haven’t been back in some time. To go out there our senior year and to take care of business and come back with a Rose Bowl victory would be something great for Ohio State.”It would also benefit the Big Ten as a whole, Ballard said, because of their lack of big bowl wins the last several years.Ohio State could kill two birds with one stone Jan. 1. Making up for its past three BCS bowl losses, but also getting a big win for a conference that has struggled recently in postseason play.To do that, the Buckeyes will have to beat Iowa first.
Following a road loss to Indiana on Friday, the Ohio State men’s basketball team needed a win against Nebraska to avoid losing consecutive games for the first time since the 2009-10 season. They did just that, dominating the Cornhuskers, 71-40, at the Schottenstein Center in the teams’ first matchup as Big Ten conference foes. OSU’s defense made an impact from the opening tip. Nebraska hauled in the first possession, but tight Buckeye defense forced a shot clock violation. It was a sign of things to come. Through the game’s first eight minutes, OSU forced seven turnovers and the Buckeyes jumped out to a 17-4 lead. A layup from Nebraska’s Corey Hilliard got the Cornhuskers within 10, but on the ensuing possession, OSU sophomore forward Deshaun Thomas out-jumped Nebraska’s defenders to grab the offensive rebound and finished at the rim despite being fouled. Two OSU possessions later, sophomore forward Jared Sullinger spun away from the Nebraska defense near the right baseline, absorbed a foul, and kissed the ball off the backboard before it landed through the net. He sunk the free throw and gave OSU a 31-15 lead. Nebraska never showed signs of threatening again. OSU’s quick lead allowed Buckeye coach Thad Matta to look to the bench early. Eleven players saw playing time in the first half and eight Buckeyes scored. Sullinger led the way, scoring 12 points including a fall-away 3-pointer before time expired to give the Buckeyes a 44-20 lead at intermission. But Sullinger’s 3-pointer doesn’t tell the story for the Buckeyes offensively. OSU pounded the ball inside all night, finishing the game with 42 points in the paint, in large part due to Sullinger and Thomas finishing an easy opportunities. Sullinger finished with 19 points and 12 rebounds while Thomas added 15 points and 4 rebounds. Senior guard William Buford also finished in double figures with 13 points. Overall, OSU shot 54 percent from the floor while holding Nebraska to 31 percent shooting. The win gives the Buckeyes a 14-2 overall record and a 2-1 record in conference play. Nebraska’s record drops to 8-6 on the year and 0-3 in the conference. OSU next takes the floor Saturday, Jan. 7, in a road game against the Iowa Hawkeyes. Opening tip is set for 3 p.m..
After one season as the Ohio State’s football team’s wide receiver coach, Stan Drayton is the Buckeyes’ running backs coach, returning to the position he once played as a three-time Division III All-American at Allegheny College.In his first season under coach Urban Meyer, Drayton faces the task of replacing the team’s top running back from last season, Daniel “Boom” Herron, who ran for 672 yards in just eight games.Drayton won’t have Herron to work with, but the team returns three running backs who combined for 1,090 rushing yards last season.Carlos Hyde, a rising junior, ran for 566 yards this past season. Rising senior Jordan Hall ran for 408 yards as a junior. Additionally, rising redshirt sophomore Rod Smith ran for 116 yards in his first season.OSU’s stable of running backs also includes freshman Bri’onte Dunn, who enrolled at OSU in January and is participating in spring practices.Drayton said all four of the players are competing for playing time.“It’s open competition right now,” Drayton said. “We’re just trying to see who’s going to separate themselves. Nowadays, you got to prepare at least three or four (running backs) to make it through an entire season anyway, so all of these guys are preparing to get game-ready. As far as me setting the depth chart right now, I like to leave it open so these guys can continue to compete throughout the spring.”Hall, who led the Buckeyes with 1,275 all-purpose yards last season, is expected by some to be the leader of the OSU running game.Drayton said the coaching staff will use Hall in a variety of ways this season.“We’re going to play into Jordan Hall’s strengths,” Drayton said. “He’s a guy who can be a versatile player for us.”Drayton said he expects Hall to contribute as a receiver this season, but added that he thinks all the running backs should do so.“He’s very, very capable,” Drayton said of Hall’s receiving abilities. “We may put a little bit more on Jordan’s plate, but all of my backs are going to have to get out there, get lined up at wide receiver, recognize coverages and play out there.”Hall said he is uncertain how he will be used in the offense this year, but said he is looking forward to playing in the offense implemented by this year’s new coaching staff.“I don’t know really what my role is yet, but I just know that the offense is more zone reads, bubble screens, screens … just getting in open space,” Hall said. “I like being in space, and this is the perfect offense.”Drayton said he has been very impressed with Hall’s maturity this spring.“I’ve seen an unbelievable change,” Drayton said. “The leadership and the toughness, both in the weight room and on the field, that was already there, but he’s taken it to another level.”Drayton said he also has big expectations for Hyde this season.“Carlos’s progression is going to be very significant to our run game,” Drayton said. “We need Carlos to take his game to another level so he can contribute to this football team. He’s too talented not to.”Hyde was not made available for comment.Drayton said he expects Smith to have a bigger role this fall.“I’m very confident that (Smith) is going to make an impact for this football team,” Drayton said.Drayton also said he has high expectations for Dunn.“I think his future is going to be really, really bright around here,” Drayton said.Hall was asked whether he thought opposing defenses would be able to stop the OSU offense this fall.“Not if we execute,” Hall replied.OSU will kickoff the 2012 Spring Game Saturday at 1:30 p.m. at Ohio Stadium.
The Ohio State football team takes the field for the 2018 Spring Game at Ohio Stadium between Team Scarlet and Team Gray. Credit: Jack Westerheide | Managing Editor for DesignThe Big Ten announced its conference schedules for each member of the conference from the 2022 season through the 2025 seasons on Wednesday. Ohio State now has a completed schedule for the next three seasons with six non-conference games to be decided during the four-year span. From 2022-2025, Ohio State will play all seven members of the Big Ten West, including regular season games against Wisconsin, home-and-homes with both Iowa and Northwestern and games against Illinois, Minnesota, Nebraska and Purdue. Ohio State opens the 2018 season on Sept. 1 against Oregon State. 2022 Ohio State ScheduleSept. 3 – Notre DameSept. 17 – Toledo Sept. 24 – at Michigan StateOct. 1 – at Penn State Oct. 8 – Rutgers Oct. 15 – Iowa Oct. 22 – Off Oct. 29 – Indiana Nov. 5 – at Northwestern Nov. 12 – Wisconsin Nov. 19 – at MarylandNov. 26 – Michigan 2023 Ohio State ScheduleSept. 2 – at IndianaSept. 23 – at Notre DameOct. 7 – MarylandOct. 14 – at PurdueOct. 21 – Penn State Oct. 28 – at WisconsinNov. 4 – at RutgersNov. 11 – Michigan State Nov. 18 – MinnesotaNov. 25 – at Michigan 2024 Ohio State ScheduleSept. 7 – at Washington Sept. 28 – Illinois Oct. 5 – RutgersOct. 12 – at NebraskaOct. 26 – Wisconsin Nov. 2 – at MarylandNov. 9 – at Penn State Nov. 16 – Indiana Nov. 23 – at Michigan State Nov. 30 – Michigan 2025 Ohio State ScheduleAug. 30 – at Texas Sept. 13 – Washington Sept. 20 – at Indiana Sept. 27 – at IowaOct. 4 – Maryland Oct. 11 – at WisconsinOct. 25 – at Rutgers Nov. 1 – Northwestern Nov. 15 – Penn State Nov. 22 – Michigan StateNov. 29 – at Michigan
The charges will be denied and there will be a trialAdam Hodge, for Dearlove, He is further charged with two counts of assault through ill treatment or neglect of Paul on the same day.It is alleged the death occurred in the Haverton Hill area of Stockton-on-Tees.Adam Hodge, for Dearlove, said: “No application for bail can be made today but for the benefit of Mr Dearlove that the charges will be denied and there will be a trial in due course.”Dearlove, who was grey haired and wore a navy blue t-shirt, spoke only to confirm his name and address in the two minute hearing.Paul died from a fractured skull in Middlesbrough General Hospital. The Teesside Evening Gazette reported that the former Teesside Police, now Cleveland, said Paul was aged 21 months when he died, two hours after falling out of bed. Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily Front Page newsletter and new audio briefings. Police investigated and “found no evidence of foul play.” On October 3, 1968, an inquest was opened and adjourned.Paul was the son of Mervyn and Carol Booth. He also had a brother, Peter, and a sister, Stephanie, according to his death notice in the local paper.In January of this year his father appeared to be trying to find his son’s grave. He wrote in on online forum how he was trying to find his son’s resting place in St John’s churchyard Haverton Hill, which has been demolished although the graveyard still stands.He pleaded with church authorities: “There must be something you can find out or do, please God help.” A man has appeared in court accused of the 1968 murder of a toddler. David Dearlove, 70, of Great Yarmouth, Norfolk, appeared for Teesside magistrates court, where his lawyer said he will deny the charge of murdering Paul Booth.The case was adjourned until Wednesday when Mr Dearlove will appear before Teesside Crown Court.Dearlove is accused of one count of murder of Paul, aged 18 months, on October 1st 1968.
A health watchdog spent almost £250,000 on lawyers in a bid to hide the truth from a bereaved father, documents show.James Titcombe exposed a baby deaths scandal at Morecambe Bay, and an ensuing cover-up by NHS authorities, which led to an overhaul of the system of inspection.His son Joshua died in 2008, aged just nine days, when midwives Holly Parkinson and Lindsey Biggs repeatedly missed chances to spot and treat an infection.Midwives who dubbed themselves “the musketeers” colluded to hide failings which caused the avoidable deaths of at least 11 babies and one mother, an investigation found.Yet it was not until 2015 that action was finally taken against any of the midwives, prompting Mr Titcombe to criticise regulator the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC). Now new documents reveal that the watchdog spent £240,000 on laywers – paid from subscriptions by nurses and midwives – on advice about how to respond to his attempts to uncover the truth.The bereaved father sought information from the regulator, after the NMC refused to supply him with details of a review it had carried out, and correspondence to other regulators.Mr Titcombe made a “subject access request” under the Data Protection Act, in the hope he could find out more.The bereaved father said he was shocked when the NMC redacted documents about him so heavily that they became meaningless.In many cases, whole pages of information were removed, save for a mention of his name, or a meaningless half-sentence. Those that remained showed evidence that the regulator’s staff had been attempting to monitor Mr Titcombe, with orders to “flag anything” he said on social media, and graphs tracking his twitter activity. Other emails revealed contemptous remarks by staff – including the “the strategy of how we coped with the Titcombe attacks.”After he asked the NMC to be more open, the watchdog revealed that it already had spent £239,871.85 on advice from lawyers about how to answer his questions.Last night he said: “I just couldn’t believe such a gross misuse of of resources, and all in an attempt to maintain secrecy. It’s horrific.”An NMC spokesperson said: “We receive hundreds of FOI and DPA requests every year with the vast majority of these requests being dealt with in-house by the NMC, like all public bodies we have a duty to respond to requests as fully and as timely as we can. Each request is assessed individually and in this case, due to the size of the request, it was decided that it would be more appropriate and cost effective to get some support. This request involved information relating to multiple fitness to practise cases over a long period of time and each document needed to be read to ensure that we did not disclose any personal data relating to other individuals. We did not have the internal capacity required to respond to Mr Titcombe, which is why we had to take the decision to get help from an external company.“We engaged an external company to help ensure that we met our obligations fully in an open and transparent way. Handling the request in this way has incurred a significant cost to the NMC, however, we believe that the approach taken was the best way of ensuring a full response.“As part of this process the NMC provided a significant number of documents to Mr Titcombe. Within these documents there were a small number of cases where staff should have worded their communication more carefully and we apologise to Mr Titcombe for this.“The investigation into the tragic events at University Hospitals Morecambe Bay NHS Foundation Trust has been lengthy, complex, and has involved multiple agencies and individuals. These cases have taken far too long, which we regret and we have apologised for. We have committed to carrying out an independent review to identify learning in order to see where we could do things differently should a similar situation arise now. We have been in contact with the families involved and asked them to share their experiences with us as part of this review.” Joshua and Hoa Titcombe had a long battle for the truth about failings surrounding their son’s deathCredit:North News The cover up over Morecambe Bay led to an overhaul of the Care Quality Commission, the NHS regulator Credit:Dominic Lipinski/PA Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily Front Page newsletter and new audio briefings.