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Justin Verlander had ‘worst stuff’ of his career before shoulder injury

Justin VerlanderJustin Verlander pitched just one inning for the Detroit Tigers against the Pittsburgh Pirates Monday night before being removed with shoulder discomfort. Manager Brad Ausmus said Verlander wanted to stay in the game but there was no sense risking injury when his “delivery looked different.” His pitches looked pretty bad, too.

Despite not wanting to exit after giving up four earned runs in one inning, Verlander admitted he had no command over his pitches.

“Warming up, it didn’t feel great,” he said, via Tom Gage of The Detroit News. “Then it started loosening up. When I got on the mound, there were no sharp pains but the ball wasn’t coming out of my hand good at all.

“I was throwing 88 or 90, the worst stuff of my career. I told Brad I wanted to go back out there and would let him know if it got worse. But he said that was the end of my night. It’s been lingering for a little while, but I didn’t think I’d be risking anything more by going back out there.”

The Tigers lost 11-6 and fell into second place after the Kansas City Royals beat the Oakland A’s. Detroit has been in first since June 19, but there are still a lot of games remaining in the regular season. Had this been a postseason game, Ausmus probably would have let Verlander stay in.

“After watching him, I didn’t want to risk him getting seriously injured,” Ausmus explained. “His delivery looked different. My gut told me something was bothering him. I was immediately worried from the start of the game.”

Verlander has not been right all season. He is 10-11 with a 4.76 ERA coming off offseason sports hernia surgery. Miguel Cabrera, who had the same procedure done as Verlander, said last month that both have been struggling to regain their form. Cabrera seems to be having an easier time with it than Verlander.

With David Price now in the mix, the Tigers could have the best postseason rotation in baseball if healthy. Verlander seems to be struggling with the health thing at the moment.

Christy Mack releases horrific War Machine beating photos

War Machine Christy Mack

Christy Mack released a statement Monday telling her side of the events that took place between her and War Machine early Friday that left her beaten with severe injuries.

Mack, who is a porn star, also shared gruesome photos that show the injuries she sustained as a result of the alleged beating by War Machine.

Mack says War Machine, whose real name is Jon Koppenhaver, showed up at her home in Las Vegas at 2:00 a.m. Friday unannounced. War Machine said on Twitter that he had an engagement ring and was going to propose to her, even though Mack says the fighter broke up with her in May and moved to San Diego.

Both say Mack was there with another man, whom Mack called a friend. Mack says War Machine then proceeded to beat the man without saying a word. Mack says her friend was unarmed and fully clothed.

After beating the friend, War Machine allegedly turned his attention to Mack and began beating her.

[Related: War Machine joked he would kill Christy Mack if they ever broke up]

Mack says Koppenhaver beat her with multiple punches and kicks. He allegedly got a knife and prodded her in the ear, hand and head. She says she was able to escape when he went to the kitchen, presumably to look for a bigger knife to possibly kill her. She was able to run out the back door naked and knocked on neighbors’ doors until one let her in and took her to the hospital.

She lists the horrific results of the beating:

- 18 broken bones
- Nose broken in two places
- Missing and broken teeth
- Unable to see out of her left eye
- Fractured rib and severely ruptured liver from kick to her side
- Can’t walk because her leg is so bad

She adds that War Machine wanted to rape her but got upset with himself for being unable to achieve an erection and started punching her some more (War Machine has tweeted in the past about raping her).

Mack also said in her statement that War Machine cheated on her daily and beat her weekly.

“He has beaten me many times before, but never this badly.”

Mack says there is a $10,000 reward for Koppenhaver’s capture.

We have placed the graphic photos below:

[Read more...]

SummerSlam 2014: Brock Lesnar vs. John Cena – it is so on

Brock Lesnar John Cena

This post is sponsored by WWE Network

One of the premier events of the summer — SummerSlam 2014 — will be held at Staples Center in Los Angeles for the sixth straight year, and it will feature some fantastic matchups that have to get you pumped. The big-time event will be available on WWE Network (as are all WWE pay-per-view events) and will not be available on DirecTV or Dish Network.

The headlining match that will get you excited is Brock Lesnar vs. John Cena. Cena won the WWE World Heavyweight Championship at Battleground last month. The next night on Raw, Triple H announced that Brock would square off against Cena at SummerSlam for the championship. Lesnar is coming off his huge upset at WrestleMania 30 where he beat The Undertaker and ended the Taker’s 21-match winning streak at WrestleMania.

Will it be another big win for Brock? Or will it be You Can’t See Me?

Bray Wyatt and Chris Jericho will also meet in one of the more exciting matches. Wyatt lost to Jericho at Battleground, which sets up this rematch. Keep in mind that Jericho has been attacked by The Wyatt Family twice — once on Raw in June and then again in July where he was attacked in the locker room. Another notable angle is that Erick Rowan and Luke Harper have been banned from ringside for the match. Will either superstar figure out a way to get involved? We’re guessing yes.

This video will definitely get you warmed up for the Bray Wyatt-Chris Jericho match:

One of the more fun feuds in the past several weeks has been between the Bella Twins and Stephanie McMahon. It all started at Payback when Brie Bella quit after McMahon issued an ultimatum to Brie’s husband, Daniel Bryan. Rather than have Bryan forfeit the WWE World Heavyweight Championship, Brie quit and slapped Stephanie’s face in the process, but that wouldn’t be the only slapping done. At the July 21 edition of Raw in Miami, Brie was in the audience and was slapped by McMahon. Stephanie was then arrested and hauled off for assault and battery in what was one of the more exciting developments in recent memory.

Brie came back at Stephanie a week later and told her she would drop the charges if Stephanie agreed to face her at SummerSlam. That’s how this exciting singles match came to be.

In addition to these three awesome matches, Jack Swagger will face Rusev in a flag match. The idea for the flag came about after Rusev hit Swagger with the Russian flag. AJ Lee and Paige will meet for the WWE Divas Championship. It will be Roman Reigns against Randy Orton in a singles match after the two feuded with each other the past few weeks. The Miz will defend his WWE Intercontinental Championship against Dolph Ziggler, whom he last eliminated in a battle royal to capture the title. And Dean Ambrose will face Seth Rollins in a match where Ambrose will choose the stipulation.

It will be a busy week for the WWE Superstars and Divas, who will be busy with charity functions leading up to SummerSlam, such as appearances at children’s hospitals, an anti-bullying rally, a Special Olympics event and Make-A-Wish event.

And for the real fans — and anyone else in the Los Angeles area — one of the cool attractions are the SummerSlam Confidential Panels at Club Nokia. Hulk Hogan will speak on the Friday panel; the WWE 2K15 roster reveal will take place on Saturday with D-Generation X featuring Triple H and Shawn Michaels speaking on the Saturday evening panel; and Stone Cold Steve Austin will host the Sunday panel.

The panels are huge opportunities for the WWE Universe to ask some questions to their favorite stars.

Kevin Ward’s aunt calls Tony Stewart a ‘dick’

Kevin Ward Jr driver

Tony Stewart has long been known for his temper. That does not mean he intentionally hit and killed fellow driver Kevin Ward Jr. on Saturday night, but it does mean there were already a lot of people who don’t like Stewart. Not surprisingly, Ward’s aunt seems like one of them.

Wendi Ward wrote a heartfelt message on Facebook over the weekend in which she had some not-so-nice things to say about Stewart.

Wendi-Ward-Facebook

A few hours before Stewart decided to withdraw from Watkins Glen, the three-time Sprint Cup champion’s team said Sunday’s race would be “business as usual.” That really rubbed people the wrong way and came off as extremely insensitive toward Ward’s family and friends.

The situation is a tragedy no matter how you look at it. There are currently no charges pending against Stewart, but that could change after a more thorough investigation.

H/T With Leather

Jerry Jones: Hotel pictures ‘misrepresented’ me

Jerry Jones boob grab

Jerry Jones spoke for the first time on Sunday about the compromising photos of him that went viral last week. The Dallas Cowboys owner left plenty of questions unanswered.

[See all the Jerry Jones photos here]

“Someone has misrepresented photos taken at a restaurant five years ago for their own purposes, and so I’m just not going to comment,” Jones said, per Todd Archer of ESPNDallas.com.

We learned over the weekend that the photos are several years old, but I don’t see how they could be a misrepresentation. Whether they were taken five years ago or five days ago, the photos clearly show Jones grabbing a boob and partying it up with a couple of young ladies. Considering he is married, that’s not a good look regardless of the context.

The two women pictured with Jones are strippers who say they are seeking legal advice. They also claim to not remember much from the night because a lot of alcohol was involved. Stunning, right?

As LB mentioned before, the real takeaway from all this is that Jones’ personal security team dropped the ball. If they were there, they should have never allowed the photos to be taken. And if they weren’t there, they should have been. Jerruh was obviously in a state of mind where his decision making was impaired.

Rory McIlroy says split with girlfriend Caroline Wozniacki has helped his game

Rory McIlroy Caroline WozniackiRory McIlroy has regained his status as the No. 1 golfer in the world during his incredible run over the past few weeks. McIlroy has a chance to win his third tournament in a row and second-straight major at the PGA Championship on Sunday. Did breaking up with Caroline Wozniacki allow McIlroy to rediscover his game?

The 25-year-old believes calling off his engagement has helped his swing.

“I think what happened has been for the better in terms of my golf,” McIlroy told reporters over the weekend, via the Daily Mail. “I’ve put a bit more time into it and it has refocused me. I mean, what else do I have to do now? I go to the golf course, I go to the gym and it’s just my life at the minute.

“I worked pretty hard before but the past couple of months I’ve really just buried myself in my game. It obviously works pretty well, so I am going to have to keep doing it.”

[Related: Caroline Wozniacki takes shot at Rory McIlroy on Instagram]

The results speak for themselves, though I doubt McIlroy would have called off his engagement just days after sending out wedding invitations just because of golf. He didn’t dump Woz for golf, but it was obviously a consideration.

Meanwhile, a certain ex-girlfriend recently started following McIlroy on Twitter again. Maybe one of our all-time favorite golf WAGs had some advice for Rory.

Kevin Ward’s friend Tyler Graves does not think Tony Stewart did it intentionally

Kevin Ward Jr award

Tyler Graves, a friend of Kevin Ward Jr. (pictured) who witnessed Saturday’s fatal incident, says he does not think Tony Stewart hit Ward intentionally, though he believes Stewart should be put in jail forever.

Graves spoke with Sporting News racing reporter Bob Pockrass and described what he saw at the Empire Super Sprints race at Canandaigua Motorsports Park.

“Tony pinched him into the frontstretch wall, a racing thing,” Graves told Sporting News. “The right rear tire went down, he spun on the exit of (Turn) 2. They threw the caution and everything was toned down. Kevin got out of his car. … He was throwing his arms up all over the place at Tony for most of the corner.

“I know Tony could see him. I know how you can see out of these cars. When Tony got close to him, he hit the throttle. When you hit a throttle on a sprint car, the car sets sideways. It set sideways, the right rear tire hit Kevin, Kevin was sucked underneath and was stuck under it for a second or two and then it threw him about 50 yards.”

Ward was pronounced dead on arrival at the hospital. Though police are investigating the incident, they have not charged Stewart with a crime.

Graves, who is also a race-car driver, told Pockrass he did not think Stewart did it intentionally.

Graves said it appeared to him that Stewart swerved before gunning the engine but he did not believe it was intentional.

“You never mean to do something like that,” Graves said. “Kevin was pissed and he let Tony know. And Tony was trying to give the message back that he wasn’t happy either. He went over the line with it.”

Graves did tell Pockrass he does not think Stewart should be racing and that Stewart should be “put in prison for life.”

Stewart is scheduled to start 13th in Sunday’s Sprint Cup race at Watkins Glen.