Back in 2005, R.A. Dickey's pitching career was drifting along unremarkably. The righthander, who had been drafted by the Texas Rangers nine years earlier, had bounced around the minors, making occasional stops at the big league level and throwing a 93-mile-per-hour fastball but producing nothing special. "We thought this guy may be out of baseball pretty quick if we didn't suggest something," says former major league great and ESPN Sunday Night Baseball analyst Orel Hershiser, Dickey's pitching coach at the time.
So Hershiser and then Rangers manager Buck Showalter had an unusual idea to help Dickey save his career. On off days and occasionally in games Dickey experimented with an odd and unpredictable pitch — the knuckleball. They told him that the best way to avoid a potentially permanent demotion to the minors was to become a full-time knuckleballer.
The substitute teachers have been relieved of duty and the real ones are back on the job. By that, we really mean the NFL and the referees have struck a deal to bring back the authentic zebras starting tonight when the Baltimore Ravens take on the Cleveland Browns.
There were a lot of questions surrounding the release of Apple's new iPhone 5. Would it be thinner and lighter? Would it have a larger screen? Would it allow humans to speak directly to dolphins? (O.K., maybe I'm the only one that was wondering about that last question.) But New York Knicks guard Iman Shumpert had an even more important question that he wanted answered: How would the iPhone 5 work as a basketball? To find out the answer he decided to take a brand new iPhone to a basketball court and discovered that—wait for it—the iPhone makes for a really horrible basketball. Let us all say it together now: "DUH!"
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The trailer for 42, the upcoming movie about Jackie Robinson's life, was released recently. The movie will come out in April 2013 just in time for the start of the 2013 baseball season. Chadwick Boseman plays Robinson, who broke major league baseball's color barrier when he made his debut with the Brooklyn Dodgers in 1947. Harrison Ford, who appeared as Han Solo in the Star Wars movies, stars as Branch Rickey, the Dodgers' general manager who signed Robinson. Robinson's story is one of the greatest in sports, so let's hope the movie does it justice.
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After beating Coco Vandeweghe in a last-game tiebreaker, Venus Williams led her team, the Washington Kastles, to their second straight undefeated World Team Tennis championship. More »
At the Tokyo Game Show on Tuesday, Sony showed off the newest version of the PlayStation 3, and it looked a lot like an old PlayStation 3 that has gone on a diet. The big news is that it is 25% slimmer and 20% lighter. So if you have been doing bicep curls with your old PS3, expect them to get a little bit easier now. A 250GB version of the new PS3 will be released on September 25, with a 500GB version dropping on October 30.
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