HOUSTON (AP) — Zack Greinke's debut with the Houston Astros on Tuesday night was made easier by the warm welcome he received from his new teammates in the days since his trade from the Arizona Diamondbacks.
It didn't hurt that the Astros also provided him a ton of offense on a night where he didn't have his best stuff.
Greinke labored through six innings but wound up with a win as Houston hit four home runs to beat the Colorado Rockies 11-6.
"Sometimes it's a little awkward, but I feel pretty good here," said Greinke who is playing for his sixth team. "Guys make it real easy. So, it didn't feel awkward at all like some other times when I've been on new teams."
Playing in front of a season-high crowd of 43,243, the AL West leaders won their fifth straight. Yuli Gurriel hit two homers, Yordan Alvarez added a two-run drive and Carlos Correa homered and drove in three runs.
Greinke (11-4), a six-time All-Star who was traded on Wednesday, yielded seven hits and five runs with two walks and two strikeouts. He left with the game tied at 5, tagged by Raimel Tapia's three-run homer in the sixth.
But Houston scored two runs in the bottom of the inning, highlighted by Correa's home run, to give Greinke his first win since July 5.
"I was telling (catcher Martín Maldonado) Maldy that it kind of reminds me of back when I was in Milwaukee, it seemed like we scored like 10 runs a game," Greinke said. "So it's a good offense and it's fun to pitch with that going on."
He did have one gripe about Houston's powerful offense, though.
"Yeah, it's kind of boring," he said of the long wait between innings. "And just trying to stay loose, staying focused (when) not having anything to do."
The AL West leaders got Greinke for four prospects in a startling trade just minutes before the deadline to complete deals. The 35-year-old righty added another top-level starter to an imposing rotation led by All-Stars Justin Verlander and Gerrit Cole.
Though he was with a new team, Greinke faced a familiar opponent after making four starts against Colorado this season while playing in the NL West with the Diamondbacks. Tuesday's win gives the 2009 AL Cy Young Award winner 14 in his career against the Rockies, which is his most against any opponent and improves Houston's starters to 15-1 in their last 18 starts.
"Not having been around him, I was impressed by how he goes about his business, how he prepared, how he worked his way through his outing," manager AJ Hinch said. "He was very calm and very interactive during the game."
Charlie Blackmon hit a solo shot off Astros reliever Chris Devenski in the seventh to cut it to 1. But Houston tacked on four more runs in the bottom of the frame on a two RBI double by Correa and a two-run homer by Gurriel to push the lead to 11-6.
Colorado starter German Márquez gave up eight hits and five runs in five innings. Chi Chi Gonzalez (0-4) allowed one hit and two runs without getting an out in the sixth for the loss.
Manager Bud Black lamented the struggles of his bullpen after the Rockies rallied to tie it.
"It's frustrating that when you come back a couple times, you have some momentum and you feel good about where you are and when they come back against you," he said. "Our guys are trying to make pitches tonight, and it didn't happen."
Daniel Murphy reached on a single by Alex Bregman to start the sixth before Greinke walked Ryan McMahon with one out. Ian Desmond grounded into a force out that left Murphy out at third before Tapia knocked a 66 mph curveball into the first row of the right field stands to tie it.
Tapia had struggled against Greinke before that homer, going 2 for 19 with one double and no RBIs.
Bregman doubled to start Houston's second before Alvarez's home run sailed to the second deck in right field to make it 2-0. An RBI single by Michael Brantley extended the lead to 3-0 in the third.
The Rockies cut the lead to 2 in the fourth when Trevor Story scored on a sacrifice fly by Nolan Arenado, which was his 700th RBI. McMahon followed with an RBI double which skipped down the left field line to make it 3-2.
Astros: Hinch said pitching coach Brent Strom will likely remain away from the team through its weekend series at Baltimore after he had gastrointestinal surgery on Saturday night. ... RHP Ryan Pressly (sore right knee) allowed one hit and struck out two in one inning in the first game of a rehabilitation assignment with Double-A Corpus Christi on Tuesday night. ... RHP Brad Peacock (sore right shoulder) will make a rehabilitation appearance for Triple-A Round Rock on Wednesday night.
THEY SAID IT
Correa on the performance in Alvarez in his rookie season: "He's got unreal talent. His approach at such a young age sets him apart. That's why he's so good. He's young, powerful, has great swing, but his approach is what makes him powerful."
Rockies: RHP Peter Lambert (2-2, 5.71 ERA) will start for Colorado when this series wraps up on Wednesday. Lambert allowed four hits and four runs in six innings in his last start, but did not factor in the decision in the 5-4 win.
Astros: Cole (13-5, 2.87) is scheduled to start for Houston on Wednesday. Cole, who leads the majors with 216 strikeouts, yielded four hits and one run in seven innings in his last outing against Cleveland to win his ninth straight decision.
05-Aug-2019 / NU Athletic Communications
Lincoln -- Jervay Green’s 15 points led four Huskers in double figures, as Nebraska opened its Italian Tour with an 87-56 win over Stella Azzurra Academy Monday evening.
Green led a balanced attack that saw all 12 players who dressed break into the scoring column. Freshman Kevin Cross tallied 13 off the bench while Dachon Burke and Matej Kavas added 11 and 10 points, respectively.
The Huskers who spent most of Monday morning walking around and touring Vatican City, got off to a slow start and trailed for most of the first five minutes before Kavas scored five straight points and a Burke basket gave the Huskers an 11-10 lead. The hosts were within 17-14 before Cross’ three-point play sparked an 8-2 NU run, as the Huskers extend their lead to 25-15 at the end of the first quarter.
Nebraska continued to stretch the lead, scoring 18 of the first 21 points of the second quarter to push the lead to 43-18 after six straight points from Green and took a 47-28 lead into the locker room.
In the third quarter, the hosts got to with 17 on two occasions, the last being 54-37, before baskets by Samari Curtis and Kevin Cross pushed the margin back to 21 points and NU led 64-41 at the end of three periods.
Nebraska opened the fourth quarter with an 8-2 run, including 3-pointers from Cheatham and freshman Charlie Easley, to put the lead back to 29 points. NU used its bench for a good portion of the period in posting the 31-point win.
The Huskers will wrap up their stay in Rome on Tuesday before leaving for Florence and a matchup with Silute Basketball Club Wednesday evening (1 p.m. Lincoln time).
Scorers: Jervay Green 15; Kevin Cross 13; Dachon Burke 11; Matej Kavas 10; Shamiel Stevenson 9; Haanif Cheatham 7; Delano Banton 7; Samari Curtis 5; Charlie Easley 3; Jace Piatkowski 3; Thorir Thorbjarnarson 2; Bret Porter 2
05-Aug-2019 / NU Athletic Communications
Lincoln, Neb. -- The Nebraska football team worked out in helmets and shoulder pads for a little over two hours on Monday outside on the Ed and Joyanne Gass practice fields.
Defensive coordinator Erik Chinander addressed the media following practice and talked about how the defense looks in its first week of practice the spring game in April.
"I think they picked up where they left off," Chinander said. "A lot of retention from the older guys, installs come a lot faster than last year. Interesting for me, kind of a different install. Kind of an older guy install and a younger guy install because there's so much retention because the kids worked so hard in the summer, but the effort has been awesome, communication has been awesome. Just their understanding of what we're trying to do has been really, really good."
Chinander also talked about how the true freshmen defensive backs are coming along since getting them to campus over the summer.
"Four days in, those guys have done some really, really good things," he said. "Now I think they've hit the rookie wall a little bit. You know, practicing like we practice and lifting and all that kind of thing, they might be getting a little heavy legged but I like where they're at. I think those guys are really good players and definitely going to help on special teams, and I hope some of them can help us on base defense or nickle defense or dime defense."
Chinander went on to discuss how leadership has developed among the players since last season.
"The leadership and the ‘followership’ has come a long way," Chinander said. "I think sometimes you have great leaders and you have bad followers behind them. Right now we have really good followers and really good leaders. If it's a leader that's talking, people are listening, and if it's another guy that may not be a leader that's talking people are listening, and if it's another guy that maybe not be a leader talking, even the leaders are even listening. So I think that leadership quality, that unity in the team, offense, defense (is there. If Adrian Martinez tells us something on defense, we're going to do it. It's just a team mentality now and leadership is trickling from the top to the bottom."
Chinander ended the media session comparing the level of strength and speed he's seen compared to last season.
"Oh absolutely," Chinander said of Nebraska’s offseason gains in strength and conditioning. "Just looking at them and watching them run around and watching them play and do drills, it's night and day to me. Ask Coach Dewitt about that, he's a better judge of that because me and him talked and he asked 'what do you think?', and I said 'I think we're better' and he said 'I think we're a lot better.' When you're not around it for four months and then you jump back in he said it just looks different. So I will take his word for it."
The Huskers will take their first day off of fall camp on Tuesday before returning to the practice field on Wednesday morning. Nebraska kicks off its season on Saturday, Aug. 31 against South Alabama at Memorial Stadium at 11 a.m. CT.
02-Aug-2019 / NU Athletic Communications
The Nebraska men’s basketball program is about to embark on a once-in-a-lifetime trip to Italy the next 10 days beginning Saturday morning. The Huskers will arrive in Italy on Sunday morning (central time) and visit Rome, Florence and Como over the next nine days.
The Huskers will not only get their first competition under Coach Fred Hoiberg with four games, but will also have a chance to explore and sightsee throughout the trip. The team will visit historic places such as the Colosseum and Vatican City in Rome, the Accademia Gallery in Florence and much more.
Follow along with the Huskers, as the Huskers.com staff will have the trip covered. From daily recaps, photos and videos, Huskers.com will be the hub for much of the Huskers’ Italian trip. In addition, fans can also follow our social media sites on both Instagram (https://www.instagram.com/huskerhoops/) and Twitter (https://twitter.com/huskerhoops).
In addition to the Huskers.com and social media coverage, Ben McLaughlin from the Husker Sports Network will be on the scene in Italy and will be filing two reports per evening for Sports Nightly, which airs Monday-Friday from 6-9 p.m. (central). The reports will feature daily recaps and interviews with Husker players on site in Italy. In addition, he will be filing postgame recaps for the network, and all of McLaughlin’s recaps will be available on the Husker Sports Network Twitter (@HuskerSports).
Husker Basketball Italy Trip Schedule
Day City Main Activity Game Info
Sat., Aug. 3 Travel Day
Sun., Aug. 4 Arrive in Rome Rome Tour
Mon., Aug. 5 Rome Visit Vatican City vs. Stella Azzurra Academy, 11:30 a.m. (CT)
Tues., Aug. 6 Rome Visit Colosseum and Roman Forum
Wed., Aug. 7 Head to Florence vs. Silute BC (Lithuania), 1 p.m. (CT)
Thurs., Aug. 8 Florence Tour of Florence, including Accademia vs. Silute BC (Lithuania), 11 a.m. (CT)
Fri., Aug. 9 Florence Trip to Pisa to see Leaning Tower of Pisa
Sat., Aug. 10 Head to Como Visit Ferrari Museum en route to Como
Sun, Aug. 11 Como Boat tour of Lake Como and visit Bellagio
Mon., Aug. 12 Como Tour city of Lugano, Switzerland vs. Italian Select, Noon (CT)
02-Aug-2019 / NU Athletic Communications
Lincoln – To accommodate demand for Opening Night with Husker Hoops, the Nebraska Ticket Office announced Friday that the 200 Level Seating at Pinnacle Bank Arena is now available.
The free event on Friday, Sept. 27, features a nationally-known musical act, and is highlighted by the PBA debut of the 2019-20 Huskers, a live scrimmage on the brand new PBA court, remarks from Coach Fred Hoiberg, fan contests, giveaways and more. Pinnacle Bank Arena doors will open at 6 p.m. that evening with the event beginning at 7 p.m.
The featured performer will be announced following the Huskers’ return from Italy this month.
As of Aug. 1, the entire lower bowl of PBA has been filled for the event, and 200 Level seating was opened to accommodate Husker fans wanting their first look at the 2019-20 Huskers. To reserve tickets, fans can visit Huskers.com/Tickets and there is a limit of four reserved tickets per person.
Opening Night with Husker Hoops begins a busy weekend on the Nebraska campus, as the Husker football team hosts Ohio State the following day.
02-Aug-2019 / Associated Press
CANTON, Ohio (AP) — For a while Thursday, Vic Fangio didn't know if his long-awaited debut as a head coach would happen in the Hall of Fame game.
Fangio finished team meetings, then headed to a hospital because of a kidney stone. Though determined to lead his new team, the Denver Broncos, against Atlanta, "I didn't know if I would make it."
He did, and he was made a winner thanks to a late rally.
Fangio, an NFL assistant coach for nearly two decades, saw a late interception set up rookie Juwann Winfree's 15-yard touchdown catch, and his team edged the Falcons 14-10 to open the NFL's preseason.
Yes, it was an exhibition game — the real first test comes Sept. 9 at Oakland. Still, Fangio was getting his chance to run a team. So this truly was a debut.
"Winning has cured more things than penicillin," joked Fangio, who still had not passed the stone when he met with the media after the game. "Nobody is doing backflips and cartwheels like in the regular season."
Trey Johnson's interception of Matt Schaub's pass after the Atlanta backup quarterback was pressured set up Denver at the Falcons 38 with 5:21 remaining. A 14-yard pass interference call on fourth down against Rashard Causey kept Denver in it, but the Broncos were hurt by a holding penalty against rookie Ryan Crozier.
Unfazed, rookie Brett Rypien hurled a pass into the right corner of the end zone, where it was deflected and Winfree latched onto it with 1:26 remaining.
"Trey made a nice play at the end, and Winfree made an acrobatic catch," Fangio said. "It's always good to be here for this game. It's always great to be around great ex-players and owners."
Fangio also became the first coach to utilize the new rule allowing challenges of pass interference calls. Late in the second quarter, Linden Stephens was called for a 43-yard defensive penalty. Officials upheld the call.
"I made a statement I'd be the first to throw the flag on defensive pass interference," said Fangio, one of the premier defensive coordinators the league has seen.
Both teams had eight-play first-half drives for touchdowns. Denver's was finished by Khalfani Muhammad's 3-yard run up the middle. Atlanta tied it with a precise two-minute drill guided by first-year quarterback Kurt Benkert, who is seeking a backup job to Matt Ryan. Benkert took the Falcons 61 yards in 1:17, hitting running back Brian Hill with a 3-yard touchdown pass.
Benkert conducted another impressive series in the third period, going 56 yards in 12 plays to Giorgio Tavecchio's 27-yard field goal for a 10-7 lead.
Benkert headed to the locker room early in the fourth quarter with a toe injury. He went 19 of 34 for 185 yards.
Otherwise, it pretty much was a slopfest marred by dropped passes, penalties and missed assignments. Then again, how much can be expected in such an early preseason game?
CLASS OF 2019
The class of 2019 was introduced before the game and walked across the 50-yard line flanked by players from each team. The loudest cheers went to former Broncos cornerback Champ Bailey , which was predictable considering all the orange-clad folks in the stands. Former Chiefs and Falcons tight end Tony Gonzalez gestured and joshed with the Atlanta players as he strode through. Ed Reed , Ty Law,Kevin Mawae , Gil Brandt,Johnny Robinson and the family of late Broncos owner Pat Bowlen also received loud ovations from the crowd of 20,802.
LOCK IT UP
Drew Lock, Denver's second-round draft pick and perhaps its quarterback of the future — Joe Flacco , acquired from Baltimore, if the starter but sat Thursday night — got plenty of action. He rarely impressed and finished 7 of 11 for 34 yards.
Falcons: Atlanta, which was ravaged by injuries last season, saw fourth-year DT Ra'Shede Hageman go down in the first quarter with a groin problem. Hageman has not played an NFL game since 2016. ... WR Marcus Green left in the third period with a groin injury.
Broncos: Denver third-year LB Joe Jones hurt an arm in the second quarter and did not return.
Asked for further updates on injuries, Fangio smiled and concluded: "I am more concerned about my injury update."
Broncos: at Seattle on Thursday night.
Falcons: at Miami on Thursday night.
01-Aug-2019 / NU Athletic Communications
Coverage of Fall Camp for the 2019 football season kicks off on Thursday at 1:30 PM (CT) when head coach Scott Frost and select student-athletes will meet with the media.
Huskers.com and Nebraska football's social media channels will have exclusive live coverage of Thursday's press conference and every football press conference throughout the season.
Fans can watch live on Huskers.com (here), on twitter (@HuskerFBNation) or facebook (NebraskaFootball).
New this year, additional microphones have been installed to better hear questions from the media and a new camera will allow viewers to see what media member is asking questions.
As a reminder, the football team hosts its annual Fan Day event on Thursday evening from 5:30-7:30 PM at Memorial Stadium. More information on the event can be found here.
01-Aug-2019 / Hometown Family Radio Sports Network
Class A - National Division
Gretna 5, Kearney 1
Class A - American Division
Fremont 8, Millard South 2
Bennington 9, Alliance 8
DCB 4, Pender 1
29-Jul-2019 / NU Athletic Communications
Nebraska fans are reminded that this Thursday evening will be the 2019 Nebraska Football Fan Day presented by U.S. Cellular, with the event held from 5:30-7:30 p.m. at Memorial Stadium. Fan Day is annually the best opportunity for fans to meet and greet the Nebraska football players, coaches and staff before kickoff.
Traffic flow for lines for players will be will be similar to last season. All players will be seated on the field near the West sideline, with lines running across the field from East to West. Assistant coaches will be seated with their respective position groups.
A more detailed map is attached. An event staff member will be stationed near each line to indicate where fans need to line up. Event staff members at the end of long lines will also do their best to advise fans on whether or not they will make it through a line during the Fan Day time window.
Fans will be able to enter Memorial Stadium through Gates 3 (SW) and 24 (SE) with gates opening at 5:30 p.m. Nebraska’s Clear Bag Policy is not in effect for Fan Day, but all fans and carry-in items are subject to inspection.
Autograph cards with a full 2019 roster, 2019 team posters, schedule cards and other items will be available for fans.
Following the completion of Fan Day at 7:30 p.m., fans will be asked to allow players and football staff to leave the field to continue their schedule for the day as the team prepares for its first practice on Friday morning. Fans may exit through Gates 3, 11, 15 and 24.
Coach Frost will be located inside the Osborne Athletic Complex near the weight room, and as a reminder that line will be open only to selected Husker JV team members. Husker JV team members that have been selected to be a part of Coach Frost’s autograph line have been notified by the Nebraska Athletic Marketing Office.
Once JV team members have made it through Coach Frost’s line, they will return to the field through the game-day tunnel walk path. Husker JV team members should contact the Athletic Marketing Office if they have Fan Day questions.
The Osborne Athletic Complex will not be open to the general public during Fan Day. Fans will have access to restrooms on the ground level, near gates 2, 15 and 24.
Water and Pepsi products will be for sale on the field with two locations along the East sideline. A Husker Fan Shop location with the latest adidas apparel and other merchandise will be located on the East sideline near the 50, while a Marketing tent will be available in the middle of the field.
Parking will be available for fans in lots on campus around Memorial Stadium for a charge of $5.
Lincoln -- Nebraska sophomore quarterback Adrian Martinezearned a spot on a watch list for the fourth time in the last
two weeks, as the Walter Camp Football Foundation announced Martinez as one of 40 “players to watch” for its 2019 Player of the Year award.
Martinez looks to join a trio of Huskers who have won the Walter Camp winners, joining previous winners Johnny Rodgers (1972), Mike Rozier (1983) and
Eric Crouch (2001). Martinez is one of seven Big Ten players on the Water Camp preseason list.
Martinez returns to pilot the Husker attack after a record-breaking freshman year in 2018. The 6-foot-2, 220-pounder set 11 school records after becoming
the first true freshman quarterback to start an opener in school history. On the season, Martinez completed 224-of-347 passes for 2,617 yards and
17 touchdowns, while also rushing for 629 yards and eight scores en route to All-Big Ten and Freshman All-America honors.
Martinez ranked 12th nationally and led all freshmen nationally in total offense per game (295.1 ypg) while also setting school marks for 300-yard
total offense (seven) and 400-yard total offense (three) games in 2018. Martinez set freshman records for completions, completion percentage, passing
yards, passing touchdowns, total offense and total touchdowns (25), and he was fourth nationally among all freshmen in passing yards per game at
237.9 yards per game.
Martinez threw for a season-high 384 yards and two touchdowns against Wisconsin, while his best game of the year came against Minnesota, when he completed
a school-record 86.2 percent of his passes (25-of-29) for 276 yards and three touchdowns, while rushing for a career-high 125 yards and a score
on 15 carries.
Earlier this month, Martinez was named to the Maxwell and Davey O’Brien Award watch lists, as well as earning a place on the Big Ten’s Players to Watch
The Walter Camp watch list will be narrowed to 10 semifinalists in mid-November. The 2019 Walter Camp Player of the Year recipient, which is voted
on by the 130 NCAA Bowl Subdivision head coaches and sports information directors, will be announced live on ESPN on Thursday, December 12.