Giants lean on Lincecum for series win over Twins

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Giants lean on Lincecum for series win over Twins

June 23, 2011MINNESOTA (32-40) vs.
GIANTS (40-34)Coverage begins at 12 p.m. on Comcast SportsNet Bay Area(AP) -- Joe Mauer's first visit to San Francisco has been upstaged by fellow catcher Eli Whiteside.The suddenly surging Whiteside could help Tim Lincecum end his struggles as the Giants look to take two of three from the Minnesota Twins on Thursday afternoon at AT&T Park.Whiteside has been seeing most of the work behind the plate with 2010 NL Rookie of the Year Buster Posey likely out for the rest of the season with a broken leg suffered last month. He had been hitting .190 coming into this series before responding with back-to-back two-hit games, a homer and four RBIs.Whiteside had a two-run triple and run-scoring single Wednesday as San Francisco (40-34) snapped a five-game skid with a 5-1 win, ending Minnesota's season-high eight-game run.
REWIND: Battery leads Giants to 5-1 victory over Twins
He also caught Ryan Vogelsong, who continued his storybook season by retiring the first 12 batters. The one-time journeyman gave up a run and three hits over seven innings, improving to 5-1 with a 1.86 ERA."He pretty much ate us up through most of the part of the game," Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said. "The guy was pretty nasty."Whiteside next is expected to catch Lincecum (5-6, 3.39 ERA), who's winless this month and been wild lately.The two-time NL Cy Young Award winner is 0-2 in four June starts with a 7.59 ERA - a figure reduced by nearly two runs after a 5-2 loss to Oakland on Friday.
REWIND: Godfrey outpitches Lincecum, A's top Giants 5-2
Lincecum gave up three runs and five hits over six innings, but also walked five and struck out seven. He had been 5-0 with a 1.17 ERA against the Giants' cross-bay rival."I'm trying to fool hitters, mess with their heads, but that doesn't work very well when you're not throwing strikes," said the right-hander, who's issued 12 bases on balls in 15 innings over his last three games.Lincecum, who has alternated wins and losses in his last four interleague games, has never faced the Twins (32-40).Despite Wednesday's defeat, the Twins have won 15 of 18, and trail AL Central-leading Cleveland by 7 12 games.
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"We can't be too down," said Nick Blackburn, who lost for the first time since April 28. "You're not going to win every game you play. As much as this team's been through already this year, I don't think we're going to let one game ruin it for us."Mauer went 0 for 4 Wednesday and is 3 for 20 with two RBIs since coming back from an absence of more than two months due to bilateral leg weakness.Brian Duensing (4-6. 4.82) will try to build off the first interleague win of his career for Minnesota in the finale.Duensing was charged with two runs and seven hits through six innings, struck out five and walked one in the Twins' 6-5 victory over San Diego on Friday.The left-hander was given a 5-0 lead in the first inning, keyed by an RBI single from Mauer in his first game since April 12. Duensing, though, struggled with his control while throwing 106 pitches."I was kind of fighting myself a lot," he told the Twins' official website. "My release point was off and I had a few mechanical issues. But overall I'm happy with the result. I hadn't been throwing well lately so to go at least six and give the team a chance to win is a positive."Duensing will be making his first appearance against San Francisco.

Thornton, Marleau now permitted to speak with other teams

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Thornton, Marleau now permitted to speak with other teams

Their futures with the Sharks more uncertain than ever, pending unrestricted free agents Joe Thornton and Patrick Marleau are now free to take calls from other teams to gauge their potential interest.

Nothing can be signed with a new team before July 1, and there is a ban on discussing terms of any potential deal. Teams have already reached out to Marleau, per TSN’s Pierre LeBrun, while Thornton is also reportedly receiving interest around the league.

While they could still return to the Sharks, it’s new territory for both, as neither Thornton nor Marleau has ever tested the unrestricted free agent waters. Most recently, they agreed to three-year contract extensions with the Sharks on the same day – Jan. 24, 2014 – in what was the final year of their current deals.

Whether they return to the Sharks could depend on the length of the deal. If other teams are willing to offer multiple-year deals to Thornton and Marleau, it makes their return to the Sharks less likely – particularly in Marleau’s case. Earlier in the offseason, NBC Sports California confirmed that Thornton was seeking a three-year deal, while Marleau preferred a deal of at least three years.

General manager Doug Wilson’s top priority this offseason is to re-sign goalie Martin Jones and defenseman Marc-Edouard Vlasic to long term extensions. Those contracts would likely cost the team a combined $12-14 million, and would begin in the 2018-19 season.

There is an added risk to any team that signs a player over the age of 35, as it would be on the hook for the entire salary cap hit regardless of whether that player is active (unless that player is on long-term injured reserve). 

Thornton turns 38 on Sunday, while Marleau turns 38 on Sep. 15.

Draymond Green receives most votes on 2016-17 NBA All-Defensive Team

Draymond Green receives most votes on 2016-17 NBA All-Defensive Team

For the third straight season, Draymond Green is considered one of the best five defenders in the NBA.

The NBA announced Monday that Green was named to the 2017 NBA All-Defensive First Team.

Of the 100 ballots submitted, according to the NBA, Green received 99 first-place votes, but no second-place votes, meaning one voter left Green off their ballot.

Green is joined by Utah's Rudy Gobert, San Antonio's Kawhi Leonard, Los Angeles' Chris Paul and Houston's Patrick Beverley.

Gobert and Leonard also recieved 99 of a possible 100 First or Second team votes.

Green, Leonard and Gobert are the three finalists for the Defensive Player of the Year, which will be announced Monday night during the NBA Awards Show in New York.

Green is the first player in Warriors franchise history to earned All-Defensive First Team honors three years in a row.

In a season when he had several game-saving plays, Green averaged 10.2 points, 7.9 rebounds, 7.0 assists, 1.38 blocks and a league-leading 2.03 steals in 76 games. Green was also the first player in franchise history with at least 150 steals and 100 blocks in a season.

Warriors shooting guard Klay Thompson received eight First-Team votes and 29 Second-Team votes for a total of 45 points. NBA Finals MVP Kevin Durant received six Second-Team votes. Sixth Man of the Year candidate Andre Iguodala received one First-Team vote and one Second-Team vote. Two-time MVP Stephen Curry received three Second-Team votes.

Below are the voting results for the 2016-17 NBA All-Defensive Teams. The balloting was tabulated by the independent accounting firm of Ernst & Young LLP. Complete media ballots will be posted at NBA.com/official tomorrow (Tuesday, June 27).