Your Monday Morning Roundup

The Phillies split their three-game series with the Mets over the weekend since Saturday’s contest was postponed due to rain. It’ll be made up in August.

On Friday, it appeared the Phils would get a much-important win entering the top of the ninth. Odubel Herrera’s solo shot in the bottom of the first appeared to be the only run that would be scored the entire night. But that was when Michael Conforto and Devin Mesoraco hit homers of their own over closer Hector Neris to give the Mets a 3-1 win. That ruined Jake Arrieta’s 7 1/3 innings of work, where he gave up only five hits and struck out five.

After Saturday’s postponement, manager Gabe Kapler decided to replace Neris with Edubray Ramos. For at least one game, it worked. Rain delayed the start of Sunday’s game by about an hour. But it didn’t delay Nick Williams’ impact in this one, as he delivered a pinch-hit three-run home run in the bottom of the sixth to lift the Phils to a 4-2 win:

So maybe…Gabe should play him more? I don’t know, just a hunch.

Kapler has a decently good situation of having four outfielders in Williams, Rhys Hoskins (who’s over in left thanks to Carlos Santana playing first, and he’s heating up), Odubel Herrera, and Aaron Altherr. Williams has been the odd man out, and it could seem like he would be the one most likely to get traded. But I would like to see more Williams outside of a pinch-hitting role.

We’ll probably see more of Williams this week. But as a designated hitter. The Phils are off today, but will travel to Baltimore to take on the Orioles in a two-game series beginning tomorrow night. Hello future Phillie Manny Machado?

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The Roundup:

First off, some bad news for the Sixers: Lloyd Pierce is officially the new head coach of the Atlanta Hawks. The defense may be taking a hit here.

Now some good. The Sixers want to sign LeBron James. We’ve known this. We now know they’ll also push for a Kawhi Leonard trade and try to sign Paul George:

The Sixers can’t publicly say so until July 1, but it doesn’t take an engineering degree to realize the team is prepared to do whatever it takes to sign James, a four-time league MVP. Oklahoma City small forward Paul George is another free agent the Sixers  have interest in, according to folks around the league. He would be a great fit because of his ability to shoot the ball and defend.

Don’t be surprised if they also try to acquire San Antonio Spurs small forward Kawhi Leonard in a trade.  Sources have said the Sixers have expressed interest in the two-time all-star. While he is eligible for a five-year, $219-million “super-max” extension with the Spurs this summer, there are reports that Leonard wants out after staying away from the team for most of the season with a quad injury. He played in only nine games.

Brett Brown and Bryan Colangelo addressed the media as the offseason begins in Camden. My favorite: Jonah Bolden probably joining the team next year. I can’t wait.

This will be a huge summer for Markelle Fultz’s development:

“I’ve been going through stuff like this my whole life really, going against the odds and a whole bunch of outside noise. I don’t really look to it. I’m with my team, I’m with family, and that’s all I really care about. All the other stuff doesn’t really matter to me on what other people think or what other people have to say. I’m just worried about how my team’s doing, how my coaches and teammates look at me, and how I look at myself.”

“We had a long chat with Markelle yesterday,” Brett Brown said Friday. “The things that he had to endure this season, we all understand.”

What’s also understood is that even with the flashes of talent Fultz showed during his abbreviated first season and strong support from the front office, he must get better. That starts with an important summer of getting back to being the guy who wowed the Sixers before they took him atop last year’s draft.

“If I were to shrink it, I want him getting back his mojo,” said Brown, who admitted he hopes Fultz plays in summer league again. “I want him playing basketball in a high-level, sort of energized individual instruction.”

After a shaky postseason run, what’s Robert Covington’s worth?

Finally some more bad (or good). This god awful Ben Simmons bobblehead. It got taken down. Woof.

The Eagles held their rookie minicamp over the weekend. Doug Pederson also spoke before things got underway with an update on some of the guys.

Defensive end Josh Sweat is happy he’s finally in the NFL after some knee problems at Florida State:

“I don’t think I had the college career I wanted at all, but it doesn’t really matter anymore. I’m here. I feel like I’m in a much better place as far as using my abilities the way they should be used,” Sweat said Friday, after the first workout of the Eagles’ weekend rookie minicamp.

Former Australian rugby player Jordan Mailata is still adjusting on how to play football. It might be some time:

“To make the team it’s going to be really hard, there are some really great guys up front, best in the league,” Mailata, who has only recently started to learn the language of an NFL playbook, said. “I really like this coaching staff, they just throw you out into the deep end. Thank god I had the guys around me helping, they were my life jacket.”

Finally, despite not being picked, running back Josh Adams wants to be this year’s Corey Clement. I would love that:

“You want to go somewhere where they want you and you want to be there, so just talking with them and thinking about what I wanted, it was just the best place for me personally to try to better myself,” he said.

“All I need is an open door, you know? All I need is for a team to say, ‘It would be great to have you a part of this organization, this program.’

“That could have been any team that they said that I’m ready to go day one. But this was definitely the place.”

Defensive end Derek Barnett had sports hernia surgery after the Super Bowl win. He’s fine now.

Finally, enjoy this gem.

Thanks to a 5-1 win over the Charlotte Checkers, the Lehigh Valley Phantoms are moving on to the Eastern Conference Finals to take on the Toronto Marlies. At least one hockey team is actually good!

The Union won a match! They shutout the Montreal Impact 2-0 on goals from Cory Burke (his first ever goal in his first start) and Haris Medunjanin. They’ll host Real Salt Lake Saturday night at 6:30 PM.

In other sports news, the Stanley Cup playoffs continued this weekend. Winnipeg defeated Vegas in Game 1 of the Western Conference Final. In the East, the Capitals jumped out to a 2-0 advantage after beating Tampa Bay on Friday and Sunday in Florida.

In the NBA playoffs, Boston crushed Cleveland to take a 1-0 lead in the Eastern Conference Finals.

Former Rams and Seahawks head coach Chuck Knox passed away at the age of 86.

In the news, there are KKK flyers going around Hatboro. Yikes.

A couple of days after Fox decided to cancel “Brooklyn Nine-Nine”, NBC is picking up the series.

from Crossing Broad


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