Potent quotables: Marathon edition

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It was too good to be true. As Josh Beckett and A.J. Burnett matched
zeroes early on Friday, the game was moving along at an
abnormally brisk pace. But a funny thing capt.6443de45c8e84d5d8365bf47a31f0846.aptopix_red_sox_yankees_baseball_nyy209.jpghappened in the Bronx. The
teams forgot how to score a run. They went a combined 0-for-19 with
runners in scoring position. They struck out 14 times a piece.
They combined to use 14 pitchers. It took five hours and 33 minutes to
come to a conclusion. It was wonderful.

The game was everything we envision the postseason to be at it’s most dramatic, from Josh Reddick and Melky
Cabrera’s almost game-winners, to J.D. Drew’s game-saving catch to Alex
Rodriguez’s thrilling walk-off blast in the 15th. The new Yankee Stadium
may have opened in April, but this was it’s close-up.

Here’s just some of the reaction from Friday night’s 15-inning marathon:

“It was a big game at the beginning, and it just kept getting bigger
and bigger. You don’t want to go 15 innings and lose
those big pitching performances on both sides.”

– Alex Rodriguez, who sent Yankees’ fans home happy with his walk-off
blast. The game-winner broke a career-worst 72 at-bat homerless drought.

“I thought his poise was fantastic. We knew that, or he wouldn’t be here. That was certainly easing him into the fire.”

– Terry Francona comments on 23-year-old Junichi Tazawa, who gave up
the game-winning blast to Alex Rodriguez
in his major league debut.

“When he caught that ball, that’s when I thought the game was never going to end.”

– Derek Jeter marvels at J.D. Drew’s game-saving catch in the 14th inning.

“It’s one of those plays where it’s kind of a do-or-die situation. Guys on, [Eric] Hinske’s up, you make a beeline straight
across the field, stick your glove up, see what happens. I don’t know
how in the world it ended up in my glove.”

– J.D. Drew still doesn’t know how he caught that ball.

“It was awesome. It was an environment, really, I can’t
describe. You see the whole place pretty much full in the 15th. And to
come off the field and get that ovation, I’ve never experienced that
before. It was amazing.”

– A.J. Burnett showed that he is ready for the big stage. Battling
through a shaky first inning, Burnett matched Josh Beckett, tossing 7
2/3 shutout inning, allowing just a leadoff single to Jacoby Ellsbury.

Trevor May joins eSports team Luminosity

CLEVELAND, OH - AUGUST 04: Trevor May #65 of the Minnesota Twins pitches against the Cleveland Indians in the sixth inning at Progressive Field on August 4, 2016 in Cleveland, Ohio. The Indians defeated the Twins 9-2.  (Photo by David Maxwell/Getty Images)
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When he’s not throwing baseballs, Twins pitcher Trevor May is an active gamer. He streams on Twitch, a very popular video game streaming site, fairly regularly and now he’s officially on an eSports team. Luminosity Gaming announced the organization added May last Friday. It appears he’ll be streaming and commentating on Overwatch, a multiplayer first-person shooter made by Blizzard Entertainment.

May is the only current athlete to be an active member of an eSports team. Former NBA player Rick Fox owns Echo Fox, an eSports team that sports players in games including League of Legends, Super Smash Bros. Melee, Super Smash Bros. for Wii U, Street Fighter V, Marvel vs. Capcom 3, Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare, Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, and Mortal Kombat X. Jazz forward Gordon Hayward is also a known advocate of eSports.

The NBA in particular has been very active on the eSports front. Kings co-owners Andy Miller and Mark Mastrov launched NRG eSports in November 2015. Shortly thereafter, Grizzlies co-owner Stephen Kaplan invested in the Immortals eSports team. Almost a year later, the 76ers acquired controlling stakes in Team Dignitas and Team Apex. The same month, the Wizards’ and Warriors’ owners launched a group called Axiomatic, which purchased a controlling stake in Team Liquid, a long-time Starcraft: Brood War website which has since branched out into other games. And also in September 2016, Celtics forward Jonas Jerebko bought team Renegades, moving them to a group house in Detroit. In December 2016, the Bucks submitted a deal to Riot Games in order to purchase Cloud9’s Challenger league spot for $2.5 million. The Rockets that month hired someone specifically for eSports development, focusing on strategy and investment. Last month, the Heat acquired a controlling stake in team Misfits.

Once an afterthought, eSports has grown considerably in recent years and now it should be considered a competitor to traditional sports. League of Legends, in particular, is quite popular, reaching nearly 15 million concurrent viewers at its peak in the most recent League of Legends World Championship. That championship featured a prize purse of $6.7 million with $2 million of it being split among winner SK Telecom T1’s members.

Orioles re-sign Michael Bourn to a minor league deal

TORONTO, ON - OCTOBER 04:  Michael Bourn #1 of the Baltimore Orioles hits a single in the fifth inning against the Toronto Blue Jays during the American League Wild Card game at Rogers Centre on October 4, 2016 in Toronto, Canada.  (Photo by Tom Szczerbowski/Getty Images)
Tom Szczerbowski/Getty Images
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The Orioles have re-signed outfielder Michael Bourn to a minor league contract with an invitation to major league camp, MASN’s Roch Kubatko reports.

Bourn, 34, joined the Orioles last year in a trade from the Diamondbacks on August 31. Though he compiled a meager .669 OPS with the Diamondbacks, Bourn hit a solid .283/.358/.435 in 55 plate appearances with the O’s through the end of the season.

Bourn, a non-roster invitee to camp, will try to play his way onto the Orioles’ 25-man roster. If he does make the roster, Bourn will receive a $2 million salary, Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports points out.