WASHINGTON -- In the first major league matchup featuring twentysomething stars Mike Trout and Bryce Harper, it was a guy born two decades earlier, Raul Ibanez, who came through with the biggest hit. Mike Muscala Jersey . And after delivering a tiebreaking three-run double as a pinch hitter in the eighth inning to help Trouts Los Angeles Angels beat Harpers Washington Nationals 4-2 Friday, the 41-year-old Ibanez was showered with a particular nickname when he returned to the dugout. "After he got that hit, we were calling him Viejo, -- Old in Spanish," Trout said with a smile. Ibanez might be, um, much more experienced than many of his teammates, but he happens to be leading the Angels this season with 15 RBIs. "These guys make me feel young," he said about his teammates with the Angels, his fifth club in a 19-year career. "And I have five kids at home. Theyre 12 and under, and Im the biggest kid in the house, really. I feel right at home around these guys who are 22, 24, 25 years old. They definitely keep you young." He came through on a night that Trout and Harper went a combined 2 for 8 with zero runs or RBIs, and Albert Pujols went 0 for 5, staying on 498 homers. The 22-year-old Trout, the 2012 AL Rookie of the Year and a two-time MVP runner-up, was 2 for 5 with a pair of singles. The 21-year-old Harper, the 2012 NL rookie honoree, was 0 for 3 with a walk. The two outfielders became pals while teammates in the Arizona Fall League in 2011 and chatted with each other before the game. Neither recent first-round pick in the amateur draft -- Trout was No. 25 overall in 2009, Harper was No. 1 a year later -- was much of a factor once play began, though. Instead, all eyes were on Ibanez, taken in the 36th round in 1992. "Hes been around the block," Angels manager Mike Scioscia said. Fernando Salas (1-0) won with a hitless seventh. Joe Smith worked the eighth and Ernesto Frieri pitched the ninth to earn his second save, despite allowing Desmonds leadoff homer. Frieri struck out Denard Span with a man on second to end it. The Nationals led 1-0 entering the eighth, when they brought in reliever Tyler Clippard (1-2). Pujols led off and reached on the first of shortstop Ian Desmonds two errors in the inning. Later, Erick Aybars third hit of the night scored Pujols to even it. After Clippard walked Chris Iannetta to load the bases -- "The biggest thing that hurt me," the reliever said -- the lefty-hitting Ibanez came up. "Everybody likes being up in that spot," said Ibanez, the second-oldest player in the majors, behind Clevelands Jason Giambi, 43. "Thats what you play for, thats what you compete for -- to try to be up in that spot -- since you were a kid in the backyard playing." Nationals manager Matt Williams did not have a lefty reliever ready to go, in anticipation of Ibanez being used there, because he wanted Clippard to get through that inning. "Clips been the eighth-inning guy here for a long time," Williams said. "Certainly (his) track record indicates that hes good against lefties. Hes just as effective against left-handers as he is right-handers. So I want to stay with him there." Ibanez, without a hit in his previous 11 at-bats, connected on a changeup, Clippards specialty. "It is a pitch Im getting hurt on," Clippard said, and wondered aloud about whether hes tipping his pitches to opponents. NOTES: Angels 3B David Freese, who is hitting .143 with a .197 on-base percentage, was out of the starting lineup and struck out as a pinch hitter in the seventh. ... The Angels recalled LHP Nick Maronde from Triple-A Salt Lake. He fills the roster spot opened up when the Angels optioned RHP Josh Wall to Salt Lake on Sunday. Nate McMillan Jersey . Nwaneri, who was born in Dallas and attended Naaman Forest High School in nearby Garland, Texas, tweeted, "Its official! Im coming home, Im coming home. Shai Gilgeous-Alexander Jersey .com) - World No. 1 Rafael Nadal, Wimbledon champion Andy Murray and four-time Australian Open titlist Roger Federer were among Mondays fourth-round winners at Melbourne Park.SOCHI - What she remembers most is what it felt like to stand on the blue-line, proudly watch the Canadian flag rise for the first time and hear OCanada belted out passionately amongst a sea of Americans. "Just that feeling of complete satisfaction," said Jayna Hefford. "Feeling like everything we went through paid off." It was 2002 in Salt Lake City and the first of three consecutive Olympic gold medals for the national womens hockey program with Hefford, a native of Kingston, Ontario, scoring the game-winning goal in triumph over Team USA. The bid for a fourth straight gold begins Saturday at Shayba Arena with a preliminary round matchup against Switzerland. "Its a memory and a feeling Ill never forget," said Hefford of winning gold for the first time, one of three on the roster to do so in 2002, 2006, and 2010. "It was a special time so Im hoping we can recreate it here [in Sochi]." Getting to that point is certain to include yet another round of hostilities with an American team bent on ending Canadas run of dominance at this event. Though theyve captured four of the past five World Championships, beating the Canadians each time, the US squad has fallen in two of the past three gold medal games, yet to triumph at the Olympics since 1998. "Obviously we haave a great rivalry with them," said Hefford, "but theres a lot of games before then and if we dont take care of ourselves here we could face them either earlier than we want in a medal round or not get to a medal round so its really day-by-day and I think thats the best way to look at it. Tom Meschery Jersey. " These will be the fifth Olympics for Hefford, but she says the experience remains as fresh and exciting as it was 16 years ago when womens hockey was first introduced to the Olympic stage in Nagano - she and the Canadians were edged by the Americans in the gold medal game. "You still have that youthful energy and that excitement," she said. "Its so exciting to be here. You try to take lessons that you learned along the way and bring them into this one, but it still feels like the first one." And thats just one of the lessons shell try to impart on a group of teammates itching for their first taste of gold - enjoy the moment. "It goes by so quickly and you wait so long to get here so really just take in every day and enjoy that," said Hefford, also advising patience with the teams plan of attack. "Theres tough days and theres going to be challenges in these next two weeks, but believe that in the end we can be where we want to be." ' ' '
Mar 7, 2018
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