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The Stack joins you on this Thursday with plenty of playoff baseball to talk about as well as some thoughts on a couple of rulings handed down yesterday.   So let's get right to it and see what made "the stack" for today, Wednesday, October 10:

Giants, Athletics stave off elimination

The San Francisco Giants and Oakland Athletics were each backed into a corner.  They each had lost the first two games of their respective series.  One more loss, and they'd be eliminated from the playoffs and could go play some golf.  Well each team has lived to fight another day thanks to some stellar pitching.  Ryan Vogelsong and the Giants bullpen gave up just four hits in the Giants 2-1 win over the Cincinnati Reds in ten innings.  They were really in the zone.  The Giants mustered just three hits for the game, but they got two of them when they mattered most in the tenth to get them in scoring position.  And thanks to a throwing error, Buster Posey scored and the Giants got the 2-1 win.  It should be mentioned that Homer Bailey was sensational pitching for the Reds.  He carried a no-hitter into what, the sixth inning?  He was on target.  The Reds now have two more chances to win this series at home and move on to the NLCS.  Got to think they're going to win at least one of these games.

The Oakland A's also won with pitching.  Brett Anderson, who had been battling an oblique injury for the past couple of weeks pitched six scoreless innings and the bullpen came in and struck out five as the A's beat the Detroit Tigers to force a game 4.  The A's have to win every game at home to win this series.  More pitching performances like the one they received last night will be needed especially with the fact that they will have to face Justin Verlander in game five should it come to that.  Detroit's offense is going to have to get more than four hits.  Oakland's offense will score runs when they need them as they did last night.  It was an electric atmosphere in the Coliseum.  Expect more of that tonight.

Today's playoff schedule:

St. Louis Cardinals @ Washington Nationals 1:07 PM ET MLB Network

San Francisco Giants @ Cincinnati Reds 4:07 PM ET TBS

Baltimore Orioles @ New York Yankees 7:37 PM ET TBS

Detroit Tigers @ Oakland Athletics 9:37 PM ET TNT

 

Going to be a full day of playoff baseball.  Enjoy it.  Should be some pretty good games.

Jerry Sandusky sentenced

It took much longer than some would have liked, but in the end, victims were given a little closure on Tuesday when Jerry Sandusky was sentenced to a minimum of thirty years in prison with a sentence of no more than sixty years.  Considering Sandusky is 68, no one has to worry about him seeing the line of day outside of prison again.  We all know of the terrible crimes that Sandusky committed, robbing many children of their youth and innocence.  Sure he says he's innocent, and that what he did wasn't wrong according to him, but does anyone outside of his family really believe him?  I don't.

Personally, I think he should have received the death penalty.  But as long as he is on suicide watch to ensure that he lives as long as possible with his sentence, then it is ok.  I'm sure the victims feel as though he should have gotten a heavier sentence, but so long as he never hurts another child again, I think they will be ok with the ruling.  Penn State should be ready to open their checkbooks for the lawsuits coming from the victims.  After not doing anything for the longest time, they'll need to pony up.  We will never forget the terrible events that happened at Penn State, but hopefully this brings about a little closure to the victims and their families.  

 

Roger Goodell hands down second bounty ruling suspensions

The first suspensions Commissioner Roger Goodell handed down for the Saints bounty scandal didn't last.  So he met with the players to talk more about what they knew regarding the scandal.  Evidentally, Goodell wasn't persuaded by everyone.  Goodell re-instated punishments levied against Scott Fujita (now with the Browns), Aaron Hargrove (free agent), Will Smith (Saints defensive end) and Jonathan Vilma (Saints LB).  Here's what each player's punishment includes:

  • Fujita: Suspended for one game (cut from three games)
  • Hargrove: Suspended for seven games (previously given eight game suspension)
  • Smith: Suspended four games (unchanged from first time)
  • Vilma: Suspended for season, but can keep the money he's earned from being on the PUP list for the first six weeks (suspension the same, money different)

Vilma is very unhappy with this decision and is going to fight it.  Each player has 72 hours to appeal.  Hargrove's seven game suspension includes the five weeks he has missed so far this year as a free agent so if he signs with a team, he only will miss two more games.  Vilma and his lawyers continues to say that he did no wrong and that the NFL has no evidence or doesn't have strong enough evidence to suggest that Vilma was part of the bounty scandal and deserves a full season suspension. 

If you're a fan of the Saints, you're obviously steadfastly against Goodell's rulings.  If you don't like Goodell, you think this ruling is a joke.  I think it is the right move by the NFL to carry forward the suspensions.  The NFL says that the evidence is there and that they have enough evidence that warrants the suspensions and punishments they handed down.  The players say, "NO WAY!"  Who do you believe?  My guess is that each side is fibbing a little bit, but I think the NFL has the evidence.  Gregg Williams had the bounty system in place.  The players never said "NO."  They went along with it.

Plus with all of the lawsuits and worries regarding concussions and the number of former players suing the league because of the concussions they suffered and the lack of medical help they received, the league needs to put their foot down when it comes to dangerous activities like bounties.  There's no place for it in the game.  The NFL has to say they are taking player safety seriously and drawing a hard line in the sand regarding bounties is a way of showing it.  Whether you agree or disagree with the rulings, the NFL had to do this.  I'm guessing Commissioner Goodell won't be receiving any Christmas cards from the Vilma family this holiday season.

 

Coming up Thursday: MLB playoff reaction and Steelers-Titans preview 

October 10, 2012  04:55 PM ET

Don't really care much about baseball....probably why I'm a METS fan. HA!

Reading the statement Sandusky made during his sentencing about how he still has his memories of interacting with all the kids he 'helped' through the Second Mile Foundation. It put me in mind of serial killer documentaries and their reliving every murder over and over and over. The best thing that could happen to Sandusky is a lobotomy so he can't remember anything. Maybe then his victims will be free.

I wasn't too happy with the punishments handed down by Goodell for Spygate but I agreed the fines and such had to be severe to make the point that this behavior would not be accepted by the NFL. Same goes with Bountygate. Football is violent enough without putting a premium on intentional season-ending injuries.

 
October 10, 2012  09:49 PM ET

Agreed Belicat. I think Sandusky is mentally unstable. How can you really look at all of those people with a straight face and say you did nothing wrong? It almost would take someone without a soul.

As for Bountygate, I hope it goes away because I think people are sick and tired of talking about it.

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