– One day after Giants’ OF Melky Cabrera was suspended 50 games for elevated testosterone levels, former BALCO president Victor Conte told USAToday that he at least 50% of the players in the MLB are taking performance enhancing drugs.
“I’m not going to name names, but I’ve talked to a lot of top players in Major League Baseball, and they tell me this is what they’re doing. There is rampant use of synthetic testosterone in Major League Baseball. I would say, maybe as much as half of baseball.”
“To circumvent the test is like taking candy from a baby. It’s so easy to circumvent. I call it the ‘duck-and-dodge’ system. The only people that get caught are the dumb, and the dumber.”
MLB VP Rob Manfred, however, is skeptical.
“There is no way that Victor Conte would have information that would allow him to have any basis on that. He’s just making that up. It’s a guess. We use the very best, most sophisticated methodologies that are available.”
– A male fan died in a hospital after going into cardiac arrest at Thursday’s game between the Blue Jays and White Sox. Play was halted for four minutes in the seventh inning while the fan received CPR and was carted off on a stretcher. Ambulance sirens could be heard outside the stadium as the fan was carted off, still receiving CPR. Following the game, Toronto Police Services confirmed the fan had died in a hospital after collapsing. The name of the fan was not released. White Sox’ 3b Kevin Youkilis was the first player to notice the commotion in the stands, and alerted umpire Mark Wegner to what was going on.
“I saw some medics jump out around the dugout and run over. Then I saw a doctor or whoever was going, just pushing on the chest over and over and over. I thought maybe they were reviving him and then the next thing you know, they kept going and going. I was like ‘God, man. We’ve got to stop this thing.”‘
Wegner approached second base ump and crew chief Mike Winters after Moises Sierra hit a foul ball down the right-field line, and the game was stopped to allow a cart to come onto the field and carry the fan off through the left field gate. Blue Jays players left their dugout to watch as paramedics pumped the man’s chest repeatedly. White Sox’ RHP Jesse Crain, who was on the mound at the time, said,
“I said a little prayer for him after everything started going again. You don’t ever want to see that.”
This was the second time this season a fan received CPR at a Blue Jays game; it also happened June 29.
– The Rangers have placed RHP Ryan Dempster (personal) on the restricted list. Dempster will not make his scheduled start Saturday, and will be replaced by RHP Roy Oswalt. It’s unclear how long he’s expected to be away from the team. Dempster has allowed 16 runs over his first three starts with Texas.
– Check out Charlie Sheen having fun before the Blue Jays/White Sox game:
– According to the Orange County Register, the Ducks will try and sign F Corey Perry to a contract extension before or during the season. Perry is scheduled to become a UFA on July 1, 2013. A deal is unlikely before the start of the season, as the 2012-13 season, as well as the CBA, remain uncertain as negotiations continue.
– The Predators have signed D Scott Hannan to a 1-year/$1M contract. Hannan played in 78 games with the Flames last season, recording 12 points, 126 blocked shots and a minus-10 rating.
– Paulina Gretzky addressed a rumour on Twitter, speculating that her racy pictures finally gave her dad, Wayne Gretzky, a heart attack.
– The Chiefs have signed franchise WR Dwayne Bowe to a 1-year/$9.515M contract. Bowe ended up missing three weeks of training camp, but will resume practicing immediately.
– The Bengals have waived WR Jordan Shipley. He’s eligible to be claimed off waivers, but his slow recovery from ACL surgery presents a major flag. Shipley was seen by the Cincinnati Enquirer’s Joe Reedy following Thursday night’s preseason game with an icepack on his knee. Shipley had his lone productive NFL season (52 catches, 600 yards) under first-year Jacksonville offensive coordinator Bob Bratkowski back in 2010.
– The Patriots have signed KR/RB Jeff Demps. Demps won an Olympic silver medal in London as part of USA’s 4×100 relay team. Prior to that, he was a return man and hybrid player for the University of Florida, amassing 2,470 rushing yards and 23 touchdowns during his four-year career. Demps stands at just 5’7″ and 190 pounds, so he’ll be limited to special teams work. He averaged 28.8 yards per kickoff return as a Gator.
– Check out Dolphins’ head coach Joe Philbin and former WR Chad Johnson on HBO’s Hard Knocks:
– ESPN’s Adam Schefter says Titans’ WR Kenny Britt could end up with a “short suspension.” Britt has been arrested eight times since entering the NFL in 2009, but other than his recent DUI most of the charges have been relatively minor. “Doesn’t sound like it’s going to be as significant as it could’ve been.”
– As we recently saw on RAW, WWE has been showing footage of the old “WWF scratch logo” without it being blurred or altered. Amid speculation that WWE had reached some sort of agreement with the World Wildlife Fund (WWF), the PWInsider confirms that WWE recently made a payment to the WWF which allows WWE to show the old WWF logo, as long as it is archived footage. With WWE converting much of its library of footage to digital in preparation for the WWE Network launch, it’s believed that WWE saved a ton of time and money by reaching a settlement with the WWF over usage of the old logo in this context.
– WWE Champion CM Punk was interviewed by Comcast.com this week to promote Sunday’s Summerslam 2012 pay-per-view. Here are some highlights of what Punk said about:
Attacking The Rock at RAW 1,000: “I don’t think it was sudden at all. I’d been very vocal about the Rock coming back and cherry-picking the days he comes in. So, when he comes in I’m going to smack him in the face … I just think there are a lot of people who work their asses off here. I’m here 24/7, 365 days a year and he’s here like three days a year. So when he comes in here and tries to lay claim to our success and things people have worked hard to establish, it’s a little offensive.”
“I’m in line to face [The Rock] if I hold on till the Royal Rumble. The WWE’s like a minefield. Any guy can beat anyone on any given Sunday. So hopefully I’ll make it and I’ll prove to the Rock that you can’t just walk in and pick your days.”
Retirement & Remaining Goals in Wrestling: “I’m not going to wrestle forever … I would definitely say I’ve passed the middle point of my career for sure. Not many [goals remain]. I kind of want to make a few guys and girls. And I think I’ve done a little bit of that with AJ (Lee). I want to make sure there’s a future for the wrestling business when I leave. I want to make sure there are people that fill that void.”
Working With Paul Heyman: “I’m happy to see him when he’s here. It’s great. Before I could only hang out with him when I did shows in the Northeast. I got to grab a bite to eat with him. Now, he’s not here as often as I’d like, but when he shows up on Mondays it makes my day easier. He’s a dear friend I can bounce ideas off of.”
“I’d love to [work with Paul Heyman]. But he’s busy with Brock. And I don’t know if the Paul Heyman/CM Punk dynamic would work on screen. I don’t need a mouthpiece. And I think we’re two separate entities. But behind the scenes we get along famously.”
– WWE Superstars, Divas and celebrities spread the ‘be a STAR’ anti-bullying message during the SummerSlam VIP Kick-Off Party at the Beverly Hills Hotel on Thursday. The party also celebrated a successful year of WWE and The Creative Coalition’s be a STAR Alliance; WWE has held more than 40 anti-bullying rallies, speaking to more than 25,000 children. WWE Chief Operating Officer and Superstar Triple H said,
“I think for our Superstars to be able to go to kids today and say, ‘embrace those things that make you different, embrace those things that kids maybe pick on you for now, because those are the things that make you unique, they make you who you are and be proud of who you are.’”
Through WWE and The Creative Coalition’s anti-bullying campaign, children are encouraged to “be a STAR: Show Tolerance And Respect.”
“If you are being bullied, there is a way out of it – go to an adult, go to a parent, go to a guardian, go to a teacher, go to somebody. Don’t let it just it just happen. Don’t just put up with it. Don’t think there’s no way to stop it. You can stop it. And if you know somebody who is being bullied, help them stop it.”
– Check out this old picture of Ryback with some flow in his blonde hair:
– HoyLosAngeles.com spoke to SmackDown ring announcer Lilian Garcia, who recalled her unconventional route to WWE in 1999. Garcia, who had not watched wrestling since she was a child and was an aspiring musician in the New York City area, was contacted by her agent to audition for a television role with WWE. It was successful and she was soon offered a one-year contract to become the ring announcer of Raw. Garcia, however, would only commit to a two to three month trial run at first. After falling in love with WWE, she signed a one-year contract and “here I am, (thirteen) years later,” Garcia says. After ten consecutive years on the road, Garcia parted ways with WWE in September 2009. She explains, “I did not want to start a marriage with me traveling everywhere.”
– Rafael Nadal (left knee tendinitis) says he won’t play again until his body is 100% healed. The third-ranked Spaniard hasn’t played since the second round of Wimbledon in June. The 26-year-old missed the Olympics, where he was set to defend his gold medal and carry Spain’s flag at the opening ceremony. He also missed a charity match with Novak Djokovic and tournaments in Toronto and Cincinnati before recently ruling himself out of the upcoming U.S. Open.
“I have to listen (to the doctors) and be patient, and I will come back when my knee is well. The best thing I can do now is to stop, get fully well, accept the situation and work hard to come back better.”
The 11-time Grand Slam winner says he’s not worried about falling down the world rankings.
“At this stage in my career my ranking is of the least importance. The most important thing is that I am sure I am fit to compete like I did during the first six months of this year, with a solid chance to win in each tournament I enter. After being almost eight years ranked either first or second, I think that being ranked second or fourth or sixth doesn’t really change anything.”
Nadal added that he would like to play for Spain in the Davis Cup semifinal match against the United States, starting on September 14, but made no promises.
“If (my knee) is well in time for the Davis Cup and the captain wants me, I will be happy to be there. It would be exciting for me and a great moment to return. If not, then I will have to wait a little longer.”
– Former UFC Middleweight challenger Chael Sonnen is moving to light heavyweight and he will fight Forrest Griffin in December. The fight is tentatively booked to be the co-main event at the UFC’s annual late December show. Sonnen said of the move,
“I could go up to 205 and I could take Jon Jones’ belt the same as I could take his candy on Halloween – a little punk kid, I’d snatch it away all I want. But there’s something to be said in sportsmanship for earning your shot. And on the 29th of December, I’m going to go through Forrest to do it.”
“A number of years ago, I fought with a guy who turned out to become a very good friend of mine, and I lost the match. Since becoming friends and competitors with him, I’ve also become a fan. I watched him win the world championship. I watched him etch his name in stone as a guaranteed future Hall of Famer. … He’s the one guy Jon Jones hasn’t fought. He’s beat two world champions in his last three outings.
“I get very frustrated that Forrest’s name is left out of the conversation. This is a guy who’s beat everybody, and he’s never been in the talks to fight Jon Jones. He’s coming off a fight with Tito Ortiz, one of the most decorated light heavyweights of all time – a Hall of Famer. They go out and have a ‘Fight of the Night,’ an awesome performance, and still, he gets overlooked.”
Sonnen and Jon “Bones” Jones quickly engaged in a war of words on Twitter. Sonnen told FuelTV that he “could take Jon Jones’ belt the same as I could take his candy on Halloween – a little punk kid, I’d snatch it away all I want.” The Twitter war then began:
“@sonnench and you call me a punk, I’m more man than you’ll ever be.” (He also used the hash tags “coward,” and “cheater.”)
“@sonnench If you’re going to disrespect me out of nowhere, at least disrespect me to my face like a man.”
“Advice to @JonnyBones. Take some of that Nike money, hire new writers.”
“@sonnench the things you say about me hold absolutely no weight, you disrespected Anderson and his country but fought like a child.”
Boarding plane to Oregon now, home of your corporate wage masters. Next time you are in town, knock on my door. Don’t drive. @JohnnyBones.”
“@sonnench lol you’re an idiot if you think I haven’t heard every dui joke in the book. I applaud original ones, that’s powerless.”
“For everyone who thinks I’m “falling into chaels game” I know exactly what I’m doing.. #AreYouNotEntertained”
– Check out Team USA’s soccer goalie Hope Solo’s bachelorette pad:
– In the final seconds of the first round, David Baxter was choked unconscious by Justin Kristie at “Warrior Nation Xtreme Fighters Alliance: Warrior Nation III.” The referee, however, determined that Baxter went unconscious after the round ended, and Baxter was allowed to continue fighting. After taking a few minutes regaining his consciousness, Baxter came back in the second round to earn a TKO stoppage. In most professional promotions, though, when a fighter loses consciousness, the fight is over. Baxter gets choked out at the 4:10 mark in the video below, and he comes back to earn the TKO finish around the 7:10 mark.