Huff Ready to Return to Giants in 2011

Huff Ready to Return to Giants in 2011

Nov. 3, 2010GIANTS PAGE GIANTS VIDEO

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) Aubrey Huff won a World Series with the San Francisco Giants and he wants to stay put right where he is.The free agent first baseman was backat the ballpark Wednesday after raising his lucky red thong forthousands of fans during a downtown victory parade. He said that hehopes to return to the Giants for 2011 and beyond."Oh, absolutely, without question,"Huff said. "I won a World Series here. I've been in last place my wholelife. I won a World Series. The fans are crazy. You'd be an idiot notto want to come back here. I love it. I've been on five differentteams. I liked them but I didn't love them. I love this place."The 33-year-old Huff reached theplayoffs for the first time in his 11-year big league career in hisfirst year with the Giants. He hit a two-run homer in a 4-0 Game 4victory.San Francisco signed Huff to a 3million, one-year contract last January to provide a boost in themiddle of the batting order. Huff hit .290 with a team-leading 26 homeruns and 86 RBIs while playing in 157 games. The Giants were countingon Huff returning to his 2008 form, when he hit .304 with 32 home runsand a career-best 108 RBIs.He certainly showed plenty ofimprovement, not to mention versatility playing both first and leftfield, in bouncing back from a career-worst .241 batting average in2009 with Baltimore and Detroit. He wound up with 15 homers and 85 RBIsin 150 games between the two teams last year.Huff feels at home in the Bay Area after only one season."I didn't know San Francisco had thatmany fans, that many people," Huff said. "That was something, man. Theschools were out, most of the people were off work. It wasunbelievable."Even the rival Oakland Athletics, whoswept San Francisco in the 1989 World Series, showed their appreciationfor the Giants. The A's took out a full-page ad in The San FranciscoChronicle saying, "Like everyone else, we're inspired."Also Wednesday, World Series MVPEdgar Renteria, who hit a three-run homer off Texas ace Cliff Lee inthe seventh inning of Monday night's 3-1 clincher, said he isn't readyto decide if he will retire. Injured most of the season, he said he isgoing to give himself a chance to rest for a while before determininghis future.Renteria spent three stints on the disabled list and finished the year playing with a torn biceps."It's always hard to think about retiring," Renteria said. "I want to rest. Whew, I feel great."Ace Tim Lincecum, who beat Lee inthe opener and again in the Series clincher, doesn't plan to rest forlong. He said he would return home to Seattle - where he plans to buy anew place - and take three weeks off before resuming his offseasonworkout program.The two-time reigning NL Cy YoungAward winner altered his routine to focus more on leg strength and corework during a career-worst five-star losing streak in August.The shaggy-haired pitcher is stillsoaking in the fact he just won a World Series ring, the city's firstchampionship since the franchise moved West in 1958. When he hopped thedugout rail to celebrate after the final out at Rangers Ballpark inArlington, he was in disbelief."It hadn't really settled in," the26-year-old Lincecum said. "You're just kind of standing there wavingyour hands and screaming, kind of more in shock than anything. Like,this really happened, can you believe it, that's what you're askingeverybody and asking yourself. It hasn't really set in yet, maybe alittle more today just because of the fans and getting to watch theirreaction to seeing us. I'm still waiting for those tears. I'll see whenthose happen."

Instant Replay: Raiders offense hits wall in loss to Chiefs

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USATSI

Instant Replay: Raiders offense hits wall in loss to Chiefs

BOX SCORE

KANSAS CITY, Mo. – The Raiders had a lot working against them Thursday night. They had to travel two time zones on a short week to play the biggest game of the season in bitter cold.

The uphill climb proved too daunting for the Silver and Black, who snapped a six game win streak with a 21-13 loss to the Kansas City Chiefs at Arrowhead Stadium.

This result puts the Chiefs atop the AFC West. Both teams are 10-3, but Kansas City owns an all-important tiebreaker with a season sweep over Oakland with three games to play.

The Raiders now need help to win the division. If that doesn’t happen, they’ll likely end up in the Wild Card pool, where they would likely spend the playoffs on the road should they qualify for the postseason.

The Raiders were down eight points for most of the second half, with the Oakland defense holding the Chiefs down and the Raiders offense scuffling along in the cold. The passing game was disjointed at times, a complete mess at others with everyone save the line sharing in blame.

The offense had an important shot to score, with a drive that started at the Raiders' 26-yard line with 8 minutes, 26 seconds remaining.

The team with six fourth-quarter comebacks couldn’t secure a second. The Raiders marched down to the Kansas City 19-yard line but couldn’t punch it in. Derek Carr and Seth Roberts couldn’t hook up on 4th-and-6 and the Raiders turned it over on downs.

The Raiders offense struggled through this game. Quarterback Derek Carr was off most of the night, without the pinpoint accuracy characteristic of his throws.

Receivers weren’t helping him out either, with several drops in key moments. That was especially true of Roberts and Michael Crabtree, who couldn’t corral golden opportunities.

The biggest belonged to Amari Cooper, who was wide open deep and couldn’t track down a floating pass that likely would’ve been a touchdown had he caught it.

That unit was just 5-for-18 on third down, a clip that doesn’t help win games.

The Raiders scored just six points off just three turnovers, which is the main reason why they lost this pivotal contest.

The defense tightened up in the second half especially, with a pair of third-quarter takeaways followed by solid third-down defense that gave the offense plenty of opportunities.

Latavius Murray was running strong, and finished with 103 yards and a touchdown on 22 carries. Carr really struggled, with his worst game of the year. That was evident in his stat line: 17-of-41 passing for 117 yards, no touchdowns and a 49.1 passer rating.

The first half did not go the Raiders’ way. They were down 21-10 after two quarters, a stretch only salvaged with a last-second touchdown from Latavius Murray before the half.

Before that, it was all Chiefs. The Raiders opened scoring with a field goal following a muffed punt recovered by James Cowser.

Then Kansas City rattled off 21 unanswered points, including a 36-yard touchdown catch by Tyreek Hill and 78-yard punt return by the same guy and a 3-yard TD run by Charcandrick West.

Things got better in the second half thanks to defensive takeaways. TJ Carrie intercepted a pass deep in Chiefs territory, and the Raiders left with a field goal. Khalil Mack had a strip sack on the next series that Denico Autry recovered, but the Raiders squandered a shot at points when Marquette King couldn’t corral a slightly errant snap in time for Sebastian Janikowski to put a boot on it.

Kelce mocks Marquette:Tyreek Hill returned a Marquette King put 78 yards for a touchdown, something the Chiefs surely enjoyed. Afterward, tight end Travis Kelce found King and did a bronco riding dance – King dances after good punts, and did that one versus Denver – King ended up chasing down Hill and taunting him. That action drew a flag.

Sitting it out: Left guard Kelechi Osemele was a late scratch due to illness. He was replaced by Jon Feliciano and Vadal Alexander on the inside. The Raiders were also missing two other starters in safety Karl Joseph and defensive tackle Stacy McGee. Defensive tackle Darius Latham missed a second straight game with ankle injury, the Raiders thin on the defensive interior.

What’s next: The Raiders will have a mini bye over the weekend, giving them an extended stretch before playing their second road game in as many weeks. The travel to San Diego for another AFC West showdown against the last-place Chargers.

Warriors pushed late by Jazz, still come out on top in Utah

Warriors pushed late by Jazz, still come out on top in Utah

BOX SCORE

SALT LAKE CITY — The Golden State Warriors needed less than nine minutes to open a 24-point lead over the short-handed Utah Jazz on Thursday night.

Stephen Curry scored 26 points and the Warriors controlled the Jazz from start to finish in a 106-99 victory.

Curry had 14 points during a 29-1 run that made it 29-5. The Jazz's only lead of the game was 4-2.

"Loss of focus," Warriors coach Steve Kerr said about the second half. "Our first quarter was great, we pushed the ball and our defensive intensity was fantastic. I think we let down. We started turning it over some careless, purposeless plays.

"We didn't really have an idea of what we were trying to accomplish. Some defensive mistakes not getting out on shooters and they took advantage."

Kevin Durant added 21 points and 11 rebounds for Golden State.

Jazz center Rudy Gobert had 20 points and 17 rebounds, Joe Ingles scored a career-high 21 points, and Shelvin Mack added a season-high 19.

The Jazz have four starters sidelined by injuries, including their top three scorers.

"I didn't do a good job of attacking throughout the game and I thought that was a good opportunity for me to attack," Durant said about the fourth quarter.

Golden State led 65-46 at halftime as the second unit allowed the Jazz to hang around and, technically, remain within striking distance. The urgency from the first quarter disappeared in the second half and the Jazz crept within five in the fourth quarter thanks to buckets from Mack and Ingles, but Durant closed the game with 11 in the final period.

"What we've discussed is just roles," Jazz coach Quin Snyder said about surviving the injuries. "They can morph. They widen, they can narrow, they can do anything. Hopefully, on a team, guys are willing to evolve and adjust to what the team needs. That's really all we emphasized."

TIP-INS

Warriors: Rookie Patrick McCaw scored a career-high 10 points, all in the first half. ... Shaun Livingston took the night off to rest. ... Draymond Green was two assists shy of his 15th career triple-double. ... Green tweaked his ankle, but he and Kerr didn't seem overly concerned.

Jazz: Utah started the combination of Joe Johnson, Mack, Dante Exum, Gobert and Boris Diaw for the first time this season. ... Ingles hit a career-high five 3-pointers.

INJURED JAZZ

The Jazz were without four starters — Gordon Hayward (finger), Rodney Hood (hamstring), George Hill (toe) and Derrick Favors (knee). Utah has been dealing with injuries all season, but Thursday was their most depleted lineup to date.

"It's easy to be frustrated," Snyder said. "That's something you have to just fight against and make a decision to do the best with where we are.

"It's a credit to our guys really. We've got a group that has character. Over a longer period of time it becomes more challenging. ... Hopefully, there's a silver lining. We've got some guys that are getting minutes that may not be getting otherwise."

QUOTABLE

"This team, my first year was kind of a surprise and everybody seemed to love us. Now maybe it's changed a little bit. It honestly makes no difference to us." — Kerr.

ROLES

Snyder said roles morph, but Joe Johnson added that shouldn't be a difficult thing night-to-night.

"This is our profession, man," Johnson said. "This is what we signed up for. This is what we do. When you're number's called, you've got to be ready regardless of the circumstances."

UP NEXT

Warriors: Golden State travels to face the Memphis Grizzlies on Saturday in the third game of a five-game trip.

Jazz: Utah hosts a Sacramento Kings team on Saturday that has lost eight of 12 on the road.