<![CDATA[NBC 5 Dallas-Fort Worth - Dallas-Fort Worth Sports News, Analysis, and Scores for the Giants, Jets. Patriots, Huskies, Knicks and More]]> Copyright 2014 http://www.nbcdfw.com/news/sports http://media.nbcbayarea.com/designimages/NBC+5-KXAS+Logo+for+Google+News.png NBC 5 Dallas-Fort Worth http://www.nbcdfw.com en-us Tue, 02 Sep 2014 13:06:10 -0500 Tue, 02 Sep 2014 13:06:10 -0500 NBC Owned Television Stations <![CDATA[FIBA Gives Sneak Peek at Possible Future Maverick]]> Tue, 02 Sep 2014 08:42:32 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/108792564.jpg

With Chandler Parsons cut from the U.S. team, there are no current Mavs playing in the FIBA World Cup in Spain.

But there might be a future one.

I watched the United States' 59-point slaughter of Finland on Saturday night and remembered that Dallas has dibs on the Fins’ best player, point guard Petteri Koponen. At 6 foot 5 inches and with solid ball-handling, shooting and creative penetrations, the 26-year-old Koponen looks to me to be NBA-ready right now.

But, at the earliest, looks like the Mavs will have to wait until the 2016 season.

Dallas acquired Koponen in the 2011 draft in a trade with Portland, but no longer has an immediate need for a point guard after summer moves that left them with Devin Harris, Gal Mekel, Jameer Nelson and Raymond Felton.

Koponen will likely play out his current contract with BC Khimki in Russia and re-visit his Mavs’ future a year from now.

A native Texan who was born in Duncanville and graduated from UT-Arlington, Richie Whitt has been a mainstay in the Metroplex media since 1986. He’s held prominent roles on all media platforms including newspaper (Fort Worth Star-Telegram, Dallas Observer), radio (105.3 The Fan) and TV (co-host on TXA 21 and numerous guest appearances, including NBC 5). He currently lives in McKinney with his wife, Sybil, and two very spoiled dogs.



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Astros Likely Have Eyes on Rangers]]> Tue, 02 Sep 2014 11:45:36 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/487248531.jpg

The Houston Astros made an odd move over the weekend when they fired their second-year manager Bo Porter, citing "a new direction," which basically translated to a difference of opinion between Porter and the Astros' front office.

It was surprising because Porter did everything the Astros asked in 2013 while watching his team limp through the season with a Triple-A equivalent lineup. Then, this season, the Astros started showing some fight and showed evidence that they might not be too far away from returning to prominence.

But now, Porter is gone, and the Astros might not look too far for his replacement.

Before he was hired in 2013, the Astros also had Tim Bogar as a finalist, who of course now is the Rangers' bench coach. So don't be shocked if he gets a phone call. There's also been discussion that the Astros could look to Rangers minor league manager Steve Buechele.

Then, there's Mike Maddux.

Maddux has thrown his name in the hat for managerial jobs before, and clearly wants to have his own team. He's been a highly successful pitching coach — one of the best in the game over the past decade — and obviously is very close to Nolan Ryan.

Ryan's role with the Astros is kind of cloudy when it comes to his baseball input, but he definitely has enough pull to make recommendations, and it'd make perfect sense to see the Astros give Maddux a shot.

Really, no matter what happens, if the Astros hire any of those three names, it'll be a big blow to the Rangers organization.



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Gallo Falls Just Shy of History]]> Tue, 02 Sep 2014 11:34:20 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/452116162.jpg

Joey Gallo is pretty amazing. This much has been established.

You can argue until you're blue in the face how he projects as a big-leaguer with his still-developing plate discipline and his inability to lay off pitches out of the zone, but one thing you can't argue is that the 20-year-old has prodigious power.

Gallo fell just one home run shy of Corpus Christi (Houston Astros) prospect Telvin Nash for leading the Texas League in home runs. Nash had 22; Gallo had 21. Gallo held on to the lead in the High-A Carolina League with 21 homers in 189 at-bats, leading the league on the entire season despite having not played there since June 6.

If he would've caught Nash, Gallo would've been the second player in baseball history to lead two separate minor leagues in home runs for an entire season, joining Fred Sington, who accomplished the feat in 1932.

Gallo probably won't have the opportunity again next season. He might start the season in Double-A Frisco, but he probably won't stay there too long before moving on up to Triple-A Round Rock.



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Orioles Summon Saunders for Stretch Run]]> Tue, 02 Sep 2014 11:16:58 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/451527274.jpg

Joe Saunders has seen his share of laundry this season.

The veteran lefty began the season with the Texas Rangers and quickly hit the disabled list after taking a line drive off the ankle in the Rangers' second series of the year in Tampa Bay. After his return a couple of months later, he had a decent little stretch of starts before his wheels came off and he showed his true colors.

In an ironic twist, his final day in a Rangers uniform came in a rough start in Baltimore — one of his former teams. Now, he's back with Baltimore after bombing for the Kansas City Royals' Triple-A club and making 10 successful appearances for Baltimore's Triple-A club. He was called up for the roster expansion and now will look to rediscover some greatness he had with the Orioles back in 2012.

If you remember, Saunders started the 2012 AL Wild Card Game in Texas against the Rangers and stymied the stumbling Rangers lineup, which featured a disinterested Josh Hamilton in his final game as a Ranger.

As a Ranger this season, Saunders finished with an 0-5 record and a 6.13 ERA.



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Lewis Has Another Solid Outing]]> Tue, 02 Sep 2014 10:58:20 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/492488511.jpg

Colby Lewis wasn't perfect in Monday's start against the Kansas City Royals, but he was pretty darn solid, especially when you throw out one regrettable pitch he made to all-star catcher Salvador Perez.

The Texas Rangers veteran righty lasted seven innings and settled down after a big home run from Perez to leave Monday's game having allowed four runs in seven innings with five strikeouts and a walk. And it's becoming a trend for Lewis to be incredibly solid. Not great, something Lewis has rarely been in his career, but pretty darn solid.

In fact, since the all-star break, Lewis has averaged 6 2/3 innings per start, which is more than you can say for any other Rangers starter. Lewis has reinvented himself after undergoing an unprecedented hip resurfacing procedure — just a less invasive hip replacement, basically. He's pitched his entire career with a chronic hip condition and now says it's better than it's ever been.

It took Lewis a while to figure out how to pitch without pain, for which he had to alter his motion and delivery, but it seems like he has now.

"He knows how to pitch," Rangers manager Ron Washington said, "and that hip is healthy enough that he can execute his pitches when he feels it, and tonight he did a good job of managing that game and giving us a chance. We had a chance."

Lewis has tossed two complete games over the past month and has been the Rangers' best starter over the second half, especially when you consider Yu Darvish's struggles before being shut down with elbow inflammation.

It's not a lock that Lewis will be back in 2015 — he's free this winter — but he's already made it public he wants to return, and the Rangers would likely oblige that as long as the price is right, and it's hard to imagine it wouldn't be.

His veteran presence is huge for the Rangers' staff, and they're going to be looking for at least two starting pitchers this offseason — an ace to complement Darvish and a mid- to back-end guy, which Lewis would fit to a tee.

When your fourth or fifth starter averages six innings per start and gives your team a chance to win, that's all you want in that spot. Lewis would be a very cheap fix there.



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Romo Healthy Entering Season Opener]]> Tue, 02 Sep 2014 08:47:05 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/453705926.jpg

The good news heading into Sunday’s season opener against the 49ers: San Francisco’s defense will be without NaVorro Bowman, Glenn Dorsey and Aldon Smith.

The better news: The Cowboys will have a healthy Tony Romo.

All the angst and concern and pampering of the quarterback’s surgically repaired has led to this: Romo will practice three consecutive days leading into Sunday. During training camp he never worked more than two straight days and sat out the pre-season finale.

The concern has always been, of course, Sept. 7.

“The thing I kept reminding Tony about as we went through this process, starting all the way back in the spring was the goal is to be ready for the 49ers,” head coach Jason Garrett said during a press conference this week. “So we’re going to find our way, somehow, someway we’re going to get you to that point to where you’re ready to go and hopefully behind that. Play that game and that’s the start of a heckuva year for you.”

In a cautious, limited preseason, Romo was 14 of 23 for 167 yards and a touchdown. More importantly, his back withstood three sacks.

There’s no reason not to believe the quarterback is fully healthy headed into 2014.

“I think the last couple of weeks, I think we’ve seen Tony really be himself,” Garrett said. “He’s moved around in practice very spontaneously, made a lot of throws. He’s taken hits in games. He’s come back from all that stuff. He’s worked very hard to get himself to a point where he’s 100 percent with his back and it’s going to be a work in progress for him just like it would be for anybody coming off of any kind of injury. He’s really looked like himself to me. I think he’s got that look on his face. He’s got confidence about his body being where it needs to be. He like everybody else is just getting ready for this challenge this weekend.” 

A native Texan who was born in Duncanville and graduated from UT-Arlington, Richie Whitt has been a mainstay in the Metroplex media since 1986. He’s held prominent roles on all media platforms including newspaper (Fort Worth Star-Telegram, Dallas Observer), radio (105.3 The Fan) and TV (co-host on TXA 21 and numerous guest appearances, including NBC 5). He currently lives in McKinney with his wife, Sybil, and two very spoiled dogs.



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Holland Makes Season Debut Tuesday]]> Tue, 02 Sep 2014 08:45:09 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/derek-holland-cu.jpg

Last time Derek Holland took the ball for the Texas Rangers it was pressure packed. In game No. 161 last Sept. 28, he allowed four runs in four innings of a win over the Angels that kept his team alive for a playoff play-in game.

Tonight in Kansas City should be a tad less intense.

At stake when Holland makes his season debut against the Royals? A chance to avoid loss No. 85 on the season.

After an accident tripping over his dog, surgery on his left knee in January and six underwhelming rehab starts in the minors, Holland finally makes his first appearance of 2014. In a forgettable season, the Rangers are desperate for any kind of positive news heading into the Fall.

Holland has been dominant at times for the Rangers, from his clutch performance in Game 4 of the 2011 World Series to last September’s complete-game shutout of the Astros. But the bar should be set considerably lower tonight.

He went 2-1 with a 4.43 ERA during his rehab assignment and gave up two homers last week pitching for Triple-A Round Rock. Manager Ron Washington wanted to see Holland dominate minor-league hitters before taking the mound for Texas.

But in this season, just seeing their lefty back in uniform will have to suffice.

A native Texan who was born in Duncanville and graduated from UT-Arlington, Richie Whitt has been a mainstay in the Metroplex media since 1986. He’s held prominent roles on all media platforms including newspaper (Fort Worth Star-Telegram, Dallas Observer), radio (105.3 The Fan) and TV (co-host on TXA 21 and numerous guest appearances, including NBC 5). He currently lives in McKinney with his wife, Sybil, and two very spoiled dogs.



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Advocates to Monitor Arrest of 49er]]> Tue, 02 Sep 2014 03:26:29 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/221*120/MCDONALD_leaves_jail.jpg

Domestic violence advocates said they plan to closely watch how San Francisco 49ers defensive end Ray McDonald's case plays out in court, and how the National Football League will respond if the player is found guilty to a charge of felony domestic violence.

McDonald, 29, was taken into custody early Sunday after officers responded to a domestic violence incident at a home in an upscale neighborhood at the 2500 block of Bentley Ridge Drive, according to San Jose police. He faces a felony charge of domestic violence.

"I'm very disappointed, especially after two or three days ago the announcement from the NFL that this would not be tolerated," said Kathleen Krenek, a domestic violence advocate.

Krenek is the executive director of Next Door Solutions for Domestic Violence and has worked with victims of domestic violence for 30 years. She was shocked it took only three days for a player to be arrested on charges of domestic violence after the NFL rolled out stiffer punishments for the crime.

The change comes after outrage over the light punishment given to Baltimore Ravens star running back Ray Rice, who was caught on tape beating his then-fiance. Rice received a two-game suspension from the league.

"They came out with a strong message a little bit late," Krenek said of the NFL. "But they did come out with a strong message. Now they need to follow it up."

NFL players will be subject to a six-week game suspension for a first domestic violence offense and banishment from the league for a second, according to the new rules.

"This is your opportunity to say this is not acceptable, we don't accept it, we don't condone it, and we are asking all men to think differently if they are hurting their partner," Krenek said.

Meanwhile, McDonald is out of custody after posting $25,000 bail.

So far, McDonald is not saying much about the incident.

"It's a crazy situation," McDonald said Sunday as he walked out of the jail less than 10 hours after his arrest.

McDonald's alleged victim may have been pregnant, sources told NBC Bay Area's Damian Trujillo.

He was apparently involved in an altercation with his fiancee, who had bruises on her arms and neck, according to the Sacramento Bee. 49ers teammates Vernon Davis and Demarcus Dobbs were also reportedly present, the Bee reported.

But McDonald maintained his innocence.

"The truth will come out," he said. "Everybody knows what kind of person I am."

McDonald is scheduled to return to court on Sept. 15.

Copyright Associated Press / NBC 5 Dallas-Fort Worth



Photo Credit: NBC Bay Area]]>
<![CDATA[Big 12 Teams Play Top Foes Unexpectedly Close]]> Mon, 01 Sep 2014 16:44:44 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/454405966.jpg

There were the expected season-opening blowout victories for Big 12 teams.

Then there were those games against the nation's top two teams -- and most recent national champions -- that weren't as lopsided as predicted.

"I don't think anyone really that's involved in the Big 12 finds that as a big surprise," said Kansas coach Charlie Weis, who got to watch a lot of games since his was the only Big 12 team that didn't play. "Maybe people in others parts of the country think it's a big surprise, but we all know that this is a loaded league."

West Virginia, picked by Big 12 coaches to finish eighth in the league, was a four-touchdown underdog against No. 2 Alabama. But the Mountaineers had chances into the fourth quarter before losing 33-23 to the Crimson Tide, which won three of four national championships before Florida State's title last season.

The Seminoles opened their title defense as 19-point favorites over Oklahoma State and jumped out to a 17-0 lead. But Jameis Winston and Co. had to hold on for a 37-31 victory against a Cowboys offense desperately short on experienced players.

Oklahoma State coach Mike Gundy said Monday on the weekly Big 12 coaches teleconference that his players "should be able to establish a certain level of confidence from the way they played."

Meanwhile, the league's Top 25 teams -- No. 4 Oklahoma, No. 10 Baylor and No. 20 Kansas State -- won their openers by an average margin of 39 points.

In the new College Football Playoff, games against other power-five conferences (ACC, Big Ten, Pac-12, SEC) could have a big impact on the perception of the Big 12 and whether the league gets one of those four playoff spots.

Oklahoma is at Tulsa next week before hosting SEC team Tennessee. Kansas State has its Big 12 opener Saturday at Iowa State before a home game against defending SEC champion Auburn.

The loss to Florida State was Oklahoma State's only game against a team from another power-five league. West Virginia has its home opener against Towson before going to Big Ten newcomer Maryland.

"It was a good learning experience for us," West Virginia coach Dana Holgorsen said of the Alabama game. "I was proud of our effort, and I was proud of our mentality."

Following the game "we didn't have a bunch of guys that were hanging their heads, didn't have a bunch of guys that were looking to be patted on the back," he said.

Big 12 champion Baylor opened with a 45-0 win over former Southwest Conference rival SMU on Sunday night. The Bears, whose remaining non-conference games are against Northwestern State and Buffalo, debuted their new riverfront campus stadium with a smothering defense -- eight sacks while holding the Mustangs to only 67 total yards on 64 plays.

For the Big 12, it was another 6-3 start, though better overall than last year when there were two losses to Missouri Valley Conference teams.

Defending FCS champion North Dakota State beat a Big 12 team on the opening weekend for the second year in a row -- first Kansas State and now Iowa State. But the other two losses this time were the hard-fought games against national championship teams.

"We were disappointed that we weren't able to pull the game out," Holgorsen said of his team's loss to Alabama.

"As far as the state of the Big 12," added the former Texas Tech assistant, "that hasn't changed my opinion on it one way or another. I've been part of this conference for about 15 years, and see the health of the conference as good as it has ever been."



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Jones: Cowboys Looking at 'Uphill Battle']]> Mon, 01 Sep 2014 18:12:59 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/jerry-jones-camp-2014-day0-03.jpg

Jerry Jones opened training camp with stories about how young his Dallas Cowboys were. He told a few thousand fans at the kickoff luncheon that many of those players faced an "uphill battle."

Not exactly Super Bowl talk from an eternally optimistic owner who has made such preseason predictions a few times.

The Cowboys have 34-year-old quarterback Tony Romo coming off back surgery, and Rolando McClain possibly starting at middle linebacker just a few months after deciding to retire. Not to mention a defensive line lacking star -- and possibly pass-rushing -- power heading into Sunday's opener against San Francisco.

"I think there is a difference being optimistic and assessing the odds," Jones said after the Cowboys finished a winless preseason with a 27-3 loss to last week. "You've got guys out there, no-name guys. You've got guys out there who retired. You've got guys who are coming back from injury. Man, this is a `to prove' group."

Jones still includes coach Jason Garrett in that group. Even though a youthful roster is loaded with questions about a defense that gave up the most yards in the league last year, Jones isn't ready to commit to Garrett beyond this season.

"If I said that, I'd be giving him a contract and that's not how we're operating here," Jones said. "I in no way have shut that door. But I have already decided that we were going to operate this year with his contract status the way it is."

Garrett was at the center of reshaping a roster that has gone from one of the oldest in the league to one of the youngest in just a few seasons. Meanwhile, the Cowboys have finished 8-8 and missed the playoffs in all three of Garrett's full seasons.

Those three years ended with losses to NFC East rivals with playoff berths on the line. If Dallas misses the playoffs again this season, it will match the franchise record of five straight years without a postseason trip.

"We started with a plan to make the team younger, to build the team the right way, to bring the cornerstone pieces in, and we feel like we've done that," Garrett said. "Now is that job complete? It's not even close to complete. We understand that."

The Cowboys have avoided flashy first-round draft picks that Jones likes -- he can't stop talking about how tempted he was to take Johnny Manziel this year. Instead, they've picked an offensive lineman first in three of the past four years.

But Garrett might not be around to finish the rebuilding of a defensive line trying to replace DeMarcus Ware after the franchise's career sacks leader was released this offseason in a salary cap move.

"The guys that are available to us, we're going to give them a chance to show what they can do," Garrett said. "Hopefully they've grown with that experience, and we'll get some of the veteran players back who haven't been with us, practicing and playing as much as we would have liked. But that's just the reality of it."

And those defenders are aware of the reality.

"There's very low expectations for this defense," said defensive tackle Henry Melton, the team's biggest free agent signing getting ready for his first game since tearing a knee ligament in Week 3 last year with Chicago. "They're going to see Sunday that it's going to be a different squad."

Jones is counting on that "to prove" mentality.

NOTES: The Cowboys signed S C.J. Spillman, a special teams ace who will face his old club Sunday. He spent three-plus seasons with the 49ers, who cut him last week. ... Dallas also added LB Korey Toomer and FB Nikita Whitlock, who is on the practice squad. ... S Ahmad Dixon and DB Jemea Thomas were waived. Dixon was a seventh-round pick, and Thomas was claimed on waivers from New England last week.



Photo Credit: Jose Sanchez, NBC 5 Photojournalist]]>
<![CDATA[Baylor Bears Open New Stadium, Top SMU]]> Mon, 01 Sep 2014 16:04:13 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/454451786.jpg Baylor's new stadium opened to rave reviews and the 10th-ranked Bears looked pretty good, too, beating SMU 45-0.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[On Deck: Royals]]> Mon, 01 Sep 2014 15:35:04 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/rangers-at-royals.jpg

On Deck will be here all season to provide you with everything you need to know (and a few things you don't) about every Rangers series during the 2014 season. 

The Opponent: The Royals host the Rangers after taking two of three from Texas at Globe Life Park just a couple of weeks ago, and they're coming in cold after being swept by the Indians.

Past 2014 Meetings: So far on the season, the Royals are 2-1 against Texas, taking both of their wins in Arlington by a 6-3 score before dropping the series finale.

Pitching Matchups: Monday — Colby Lewis (9-11, 5.44 ERA) vs. Yordano Ventura (10-9, 3.40); Tuesday — Derek Holland (2014 debut) vs. Jeremy Guthrie (10-10, 4.43); Wednesday — Nick Tepesch (4-8, 4.44) vs. Jason Vargas (10-7, 3.27).

What's Hot: Both of the Rangers' leadoff hitters now that Shin-Soo Choo is out for the season are the team's top two hitters over the past week. Daniel Robertson, who bats leadoff against left-handed pitching, is 6-for-14 with two doubles and an RBI. Colby Lewis tossed a complete game in his last outing, allowing four runs in a Rangers' blowout victory.

Shortstop Alcides Escobar is hitting .310 with a double, a triple and an RBI in his past seven games. All-star catcher Salvador Perez is hitting .300 over that same time, and he's second on the team in RBIs in that span with four. The leader? That'd be outfielder Alex Gordon, who's hitting just .259 in his past seven games but he's made his hits count to the tune of three homers and six RBIs.

What's Not: Other than Martin and Robertson, not much else is cooking in the Rangers' lineup. Michael Choice, now getting a shot at full-time playing time after Choo's shutdown, is batting just .150 over his past six games. One of his hits was a mammoth home run. Even Adrian Beltre is in a slump, by his standards, batting just .261 over his last six games.

Vargas and Guthrie both struggled in their last outing, each going six innings but giving up four and five runs, respectively. Two of the Royals' bigger bats, third baseman Mike Moustakas and DH Billy Butler, are both struggling. Moustakas is hitting just .130 in his last seven games, and Butler is batting .208 in the same time.

Familiar Faces: Former Rangers reliever Jason Frasor was shipped off to Kansas City prior to the July 31 trade deadline after going 1-1 with a 3.34 ERA in 29 2/3 innings for the Rangers. He's made 16 appearances with Kansas City, going 2-0 with a 1.69 ERA, allowing just two runs in his 10 2/3 innings of work.

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<![CDATA[Jason Terry Lands With Houston Rockets]]> Mon, 01 Sep 2014 12:28:24 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/nets+heat.jpg

As if it needed any extra subplots, the Mavs-Rockets’ rivalry just got even a little more interesting.

Jason Terry, Houston Rocket.

Ouch.

The Mavericks, of course, stole Chandler Parsons away from the Rockets early in free agency. That move ravaged Houston’s summer plans to acquire Chris Bosh and become an elite contender. Left reeling and badly in need of backcourt depth, they are now counting on the former Maverick after acquiring him in a trade with the Sacramento Kings.

Terry is all but done at age 36. Last year in Brooklyn he played in only 35 games and averaged just 4.5 points on 36-percent shooting. The jet isn’t on the runway, but instead slowly veering off toward the hangar.

Terry wanted to finish his career in Dallas. But will likely now do so in Houston, as a role player for the Mavs’ newest, biggest rival.

A native Texan who was born in Duncanville and graduated from UT-Arlington, Richie Whitt has been a mainstay in the Metroplex media since 1986. He’s held prominent roles on all media platforms including newspaper (Fort Worth Star-Telegram, Dallas Observer), radio (105.3 The Fan) and TV (co-host on TXA 21 and numerous guest appearances, including NBC 5). He currently lives in McKinney with his wife, Sybil, and two very spoiled dogs.



Photo Credit: AP]]>
<![CDATA[Feliz Failing to Grab Closer's Job in 2015 ]]> Mon, 01 Sep 2014 11:57:33 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/181384874.jpg

Unless something changes significantly in the final month of the season, the Rangers won’t know their closer into next year’s spring training.

Another spotty performance in an inconsistent season by Neftali Feliz only fuels that fire.

On Sunday in Houston manager Ron Washington asked Feliz to clean up the 8th inning mess created by set-up man Neal Cotts. The Rangers had led 2-1, but were now tied. Feliz needed to get one out – Robbie Grossman – to wiggle out of the jam.

Nope.

With blah velocity and little command, Feliz walked Grossman before giving up Jose Altuve’s game-winning single on a 91 mph fastball. In a season of injuries and losses and more losses, the Rangers blew this one to the Astros, 3-2.

At this point, gone are the days of Feliz and his 100-mph heat. And at this rate, vanished is the confidence the Rangers have in him as the closer moving forward.

A native Texan who was born in Duncanville and graduated from UT-Arlington, Richie Whitt has been a mainstay in the Metroplex media since 1986. He’s held prominent roles on all media platforms including newspaper (Fort Worth Star-Telegram, Dallas Observer), radio (105.3 The Fan) and TV (co-host on TXA 21 and numerous guest appearances, including NBC 5). He currently lives in McKinney with his wife, Sybil, and two very spoiled dogs.



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Jerry Still Not Over Divorcing Jimmy]]> Mon, 01 Sep 2014 13:49:27 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/182520198.jpg

Time, they say, heals all wounds.

Or, in some cases, only worsens and deepens the pain?

Took a minute during Labor Day weekend to watch ESPN’s interview with Cowboys owner Jerry Jones. During the piece the topic of Jimmy Johnson arose, and Jones made it abundantly clear that – because he’s still bitter over their 20-year-old divorce – the former coach will not be enshrined into the Ring of Honor anytime soon.

If ever.

“I don’t have plans for Jimmy Johnson to be in the Ring of Honor,” Jones said, at times pausing, struggling for words and seemingly even fighting back tears. “The criteria that I’m more interested in are with the guys that were on the field and making the plays.”

Obviously Jones’ stubbornness reeks of being a hypocrite. He was the owner, after all, who inducted into the Ring of Honor former general manager Tex Schramm and legendary coach Tom Landry, neither of whom played a single down for the Cowboys. But like Johnson, they were major cogs in winning multiple Super Bowls.

While admitting Johnson was a great coach, Jones reiterated that he’s a one-man committee and that “I get to make that decision to whether or not (Johnson’s coaching) was that impactful, in my judgment.”

Some would argue that – given his stance on Johnson – Jones should retroactively remove Schramm and Landry from the Ring of Honor, and, in turn, never ever never consider himself for enshrinement.

I covered the Cowboys of the early ‘90s as a beat writer for the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. And I watched the divorce from the inside. Still as sad today as it was inexplicable in March of 1994. In short, Jones wanted more credit for the back-to-back Super Bowls and Johnson began flirting with other teams to prove his worth.

Simply, their split was about greed.

With his team stuck in mediocrity and fans growing more dismayed by his leadership, Jones would be smart to swallow his pride and induct Johnson. But he can’t bring himself to do it. Not yet. Maybe not ever.

“I lost my tolerance for having an associate and a friend not be loyal,” Jones said. “I’ve been told that’s trite. That I should be bigger than that.”

Yes, Jerry. Yes you should.

A native Texan who was born in Duncanville and graduated from UT-Arlington, Richie Whitt has been a mainstay in the Metroplex media since 1986. He’s held prominent roles on all media platforms including newspaper (Fort Worth Star-Telegram, Dallas Observer), radio (105.3 The Fan) and TV (co-host on TXA 21 and numerous guest appearances, including NBC 5). He currently lives in McKinney with his wife, Sybil, and two very spoiled dogs.



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Baylor Fans "Sail Gate" Before First New Stadium Game]]> Mon, 01 Sep 2014 00:42:24 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/090114+McLane+Stadium+Sail+Gate.jpg NBC 5's David Watkins experiences the first Baylor University football game at the new McLane Stadium -- from the stands to the Brazos river.

Photo Credit: Noah Bullard, NBC 5 Sports]]>
<![CDATA[49ers' Ray McDonald Arrested]]> Mon, 01 Sep 2014 12:24:54 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/221*120/MCDONALD_leaves_jail.jpg

The San Francisco 49ers defensive end Ray McDonald was arrested for domestic violence overnight, San Jose police confirmed.

San Jose police Sgt. Heather Randol said the 29-year-old was taken into custody early Sunday after officers responded to a domestic violence incident at a home in an upscale neighborhood at the 2500 block of Bentley Ridge Drive, SJPD said in a release.

McDonald was taken into custody without incident and booked into Santa Clara County Jail on felony domestic violence charges, according to the release. He has posted $25,000 bail and has been released from jail, police said.

So far, McDonald is not saying much about the incident.

"It's a crazy situation," said McDonald, as he walked out of the jail less than 10 hours after his arrest.

McDonald's alleged victim may have been pregnant, sources told NBC Bay Area's Damian Trujillo.

He was apparently involved in an altercation with his fiancee, who had bruises on her arms and neck, according to the Sacramento Bee. 49ers teammates Vernon Davis and Demarcus Dobbs were also reportedly present, the Bee reported.

But McDonald maintained his innocence.

"The truth will come out," he said. "Everybody knows what kind of person I am."

The 49ers General Manager Trent Baalke said in a statement Sunday that the organization is "aware of the recent reports regarding Ray McDonald and we take such matters seriously. As we continue to gather the facts, we will reserve further comment.”

McDonald, who has been playing for the 49ers since 2007, was arrested on the same street where 49ers' outside linebacker Aldon Smith was busted for a DUI last September, sources told NBC Bay Area.

The NFL has suspended Smith on Friday for the first nine games of the 2014 season for violating the league's policies on substance abuse and personal conduct.

McDonald's arrest comes after NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell announced a tougher domestic abuse policy on Thursday. NFL players will be subject to a six-week game suspension for a first domestic violence offense and banishment from the league for a second, according to the new rules.

Copyright Associated Press / NBC 5 Dallas-Fort Worth



Photo Credit: NBC Bay Area]]>
<![CDATA[Sideline Images: FSU Tops OSU in Arlington]]> Sun, 31 Aug 2014 10:45:45 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/454401128.jpg The Cowboys started the season with a pretty good building block Saturday night, even if it wasn't a win over No. 1 Florida State.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[$1 Million in Furniture Given Away With Aggies Win]]> Sat, 30 Aug 2014 11:20:29 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/yogi+berra+living+room.jpg

Texas A&M's big win over South Carolina Thursday night wasn't just great for Aggie fans -- it was great for some customers of the Ashley Furniture Homestore in Central Texas.

The College Station store ran a promotion that would cover the cost of purchases made by customers if the Aggie football team beat the Gamecocks by more than 10 points.

The Aggies, led by Southlake product Kenny Hill, won by 24 points.

The end result was that furniture bought by more than 600 people, worth around $1 million, was now free -- or at least covered by the cost of an insurance policy bought by the retailer to insure the marketing campaign.

"We felt that from the beginning it was going to be a good game and A&M came out very strong, very powerful, scoring in the first drive. It was very exciting. A lot of excitement, a lot of craziness," said Gabe Gonzalez, general manager of the Ashley Furniture Homestore in College Station.


 

Copyright Associated Press / NBC 5 Dallas-Fort Worth

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<![CDATA[Home Runs Lift Rangers Over Astros 13-6]]> Fri, 29 Aug 2014 22:41:02 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/214*120/rangers082914.jpg

Michael Choice and Rougned Odor both hit three-run homers and the Texas Rangers cruised to a 13-6 win over the Houston Astros on Friday night.

The Rangers were up by two in the fourth inning when Choice launched his ninth home run into the Crawford Boxes in left field to push the lead to 6-1. Odor connected in a five-run seventh inning with a shot to the seats in right field to make it 13-1.

Adam Rosales and Elvis Andrus added two RBIs each for the Rangers, who have the worst record in the American League and have won just five of 14 meetings with the Astros this season.

Ryan Rua made his major league debut and became the 59th player the injury-decimated Rangers have used this season, tying the major league record set by the Padres in 2002 and 2008 and Indians in 2002.



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Cowboys Debut Partnership with Hublot]]> Fri, 29 Aug 2014 22:38:27 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/Cowboys+watches+Hublot.jpg Some Dallas Cowboys are taking a time out to model fancy timepieces at AT&T Stadium. Go behind the scenes with FD Magazine to see players and coaches like you've never seen them before.

Photo Credit: NBC 5 News]]>
<![CDATA[Aledo, Cedar Park Help Open Baylor's McLane Stadium]]> Fri, 29 Aug 2014 22:32:09 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/mclane-stadium-aerial-10.jpg A pair of Texas high school football powerhouses helped open the new McLane Stadium at Baylor University. Aledo beat Cedar Park 21-7.

Photo Credit: NBC 5 News]]>
<![CDATA[Big Game Friday Night 5 p.m. - Aug. 29, 2014]]> Fri, 29 Aug 2014 18:01:56 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/big+game+Pat.jpg NBC 5's Pat Doney is live as Big Game Friday Night reports from Denton on the game between Allen High School and Denton Guyer at UNT's Apogee Stadium.

Photo Credit: NBC 5 News]]>
<![CDATA[Big Game Friday Night 4 p.m. - Aug. 29, 2014]]> Fri, 29 Aug 2014 16:37:37 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/unt-stadium-081211.jpg NBC 5's Pat Doney is live as Big Game Friday Night reports from Denton on the game between Allen High School and Denton Guyer at UNT's Apogee Stadium.

Photo Credit: NBCDFW.com]]>
<![CDATA[Beltre Discusses Batting Crown Race]]> Fri, 29 Aug 2014 16:16:01 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/489883375.jpg

Adrian Beltre has made himself quite a reputation around here since joining the Texas Rangers prior to the 2011 season.

He's just awesome — his leadership, his defense, his ability to put a team on his shoulders, his fun style of play. The entire package makes him one of the biggest fan favorites on the team, even before most of their other everyday players were lost for the season at one point or another.

This year, Beltre is trying to salvage some sort of success, and he could do that on the personal level, which he really cares nothing about, by winning the first batting title of his illustrious career.

In 2010 and 2012, Beltre hit .321, the former of which came as a member of the Boston Red Sox before joining the Rangers in 2011. That's currently his career high for batting average, but entering play on Friday with a month remaining in the season, Beltre is batting .325, good for a tie for third place in the American League in batting with Seattle second baseman Robinson Cano.

They trail Detroit's Victor Martinez (.327) and Houston's Jose Altuve (.332), putting Beltre within solid striking distance of a personal banner year.

In Houston on Thursday, Beltre told reporters he'd like to add an accomplishment to his resume, but isn't thinking too much about it, especially with great hitters like Martinez and Altuve in front of him.

“Everything is going south for us, but I don’t look at it as a personal thing," Beltre said. "I’m just glad to be out there to contribute and help our team find a way to win ballgames. I’m still trying not to be in last place in this division.”

A batting crown would bolster an already sterling resume for the possible Hall of Famer, who's played 17 years and is approaching 400 home runs and 2,600 hits.



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>