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Sports Today: Reds top Cardinals, NHL playoffs coming, NFL draft speculation, etc.


The Cincinnati Reds are 4-2 after taking two of three games from the Cardinals in St. Louis over the weekend. 

How about that? 

As Tucker Barnhart predicted, Scott Feldman was much better in his second start than his first. The veteran struck out six, walked on and allowed four hits in six shutout innings yesterday. Adam Duvall and Joey Votto homered as the Reds romped 8-0. 

Friday night, Amir Garrett was great in his debut and Bryan Price used Michael Lorenzen and Raisel Iglesias to get the last nine outs. We’re counting that as the first foray into the “hybrid bullpen” as traditionally you would expect Price to go with someone such as Tony Cingrani in the ninth, especially since Iglesias did not have an especially quick eighth inning. 

RELATED: Read more at Marcus Hartman’s “Cus Words Blog

In between those wins was a fairly disastrous Saturday in which Bronson Arroyo and Robert Stephenson both got roughed up. It will be interesting to see if either of those things become a trend as they could both play important roles this season – and of course beyond for Stephenson, the first-round draft pick. 

But two outta three is two outta three, ain’t it?... 

Sergio Garcia won The Masters, apparently in dramatic fashion

Here is a link to what happened if you like me you weren’t watching… 

If baseball alone wasn’t enough to satisfy your sports cravings in the six days since North Carolina won the NCAA tournament final, we have good news: The NHL Stanley Cup playoffs begin this week. 

The Columbus Blue Jackets face the defending champion Pittsburgh Penguins at 7:30 Wednesday night to kick things off. 

This is a rematch of 2014, the last time the CBJ made it in, and that is not entirely an accident. 

The NHL hoped to create more regional rivalries when it realigned a few years back, although there is some debate about whether or not that is a good thing now that it’s played out for a little while… 

The NFL draft is getting closer, which means you can count on pre-draft hype ramping up. 

There will also be ridiculous insinuations like this from CBS Sports the Cleveland Browns might take LSU running back Leonard Fournette with the No. 1 overall pick. 

I am a Fournette fan – he might be worth a shot by the Bengals at No. 9 – but a premium pass rusher makes far more sense than a running back at the top of the draft. 

Despite both picking in the top 10, the Browns and Bengals are obviously in different situations. The Browns’ roster needs a major restocking, so they need to place a premium on talent first and foremost. 

The Bengals like to draft the best player available (as they should), but they have some strengths to lean on already so they should fall back on need when looking for a tiebreaker.

I still believe they could use more young talent on defense more than anything, but there is so much uncertainty at running back Fournette could be worth it – especially if they are among teams extra smitten with him after his Pro Day. 

I doubt they go that direction, though... 

If you thought it was a foregone conclusion Fairfield five-star Jackson Carman would suit up for Ohio State in the fall of 2018, think again.

The offensive lineman told Land of 10 he has OSU and defending national champion Clemson as his co-leaders at this point, but he might not be interested in staying close to home… 

On the college basketball recruiting front, Anthony Grant is working to keep Archie Miller’s last Dayton class together. 

He met with two recruits over the weekend

Dayton is reportedly among three teams being considered by Minnesota prep point guard McKinley Wright, who signed with UD but asked for his release so he could reconsider after Miller’s exit. 

Also of note: Two Dayton assistants are officially heading to Bloomington with Miller. 

Meanwhile, the Dayton women’s team also could be looking at losing a recruit as Sam Breen has asked for her release

A national top-100 prospect, Breen was the only player coach Shauna Green signed last fall in her first year on the job… 

RELATED: New UD coach knows challenges that await on recruiting trail 

Scary and sad situation in Oxford this weekend as Wright State basketball freshman Ryan Custer was seriously injured at a party near Miami University. 

His family issued a statement Monday on Facebook saying Custer suffered severe trauma, including a fractured cervical vertebrae, and underwent spinal surgery Saturday night at a Cincinnati hospital. 

The statement says Custer has regained some sensation in his upper extremities and can bend his arms but has no feelings below his waist… 

And lastly it was a bittersweet weekend for former Ohio State point guard D’Angelo Russell, who lost his grandmother but hit a game-winning shot for the Los Angeles Lakers against the Minnesota Timberwolves. 

He considered flying home to Louisville but opted to suit up for the Lakers instead. 

“Honestly, I knew that’s what my grandma would have wanted,” Russell told reporters in LA after the game. “My dad, my brothers — everybody wanted me to play. I wanted to get away from basketball.” 

 “I didn’t want to express myself through basketball, but that’s the only option I kind of had, so I tried to take advantage of it.” 


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