Sports

WNPR News sports coverage brings you a mix of local and statewide news from our reporters as well as national and global news from around the world from NPR. For local sports coverage, take a look at CPTVSports.org or follow our sports television broadcasts 24/7 at CPTV Sports.

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Colonial game
1:21 pm
Thu October 31, 2013

Before There Was Baseball, There Was Wicket

One of two wicket bats belonging to Bristol's Manross Library
Ray Hardman WNPR

Before the rise of baseball, early Americans played a host of ball and bat games, with names like rounders, stool ball and tip-cat. One of these games, wicket, was by far the most popular of them, especially in Connecticut, where for a few decades in the 1800s the sport was even more popular than baseball.

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Fall Classic
7:50 am
Thu October 31, 2013

The Boston Red Sox Remain Strong Through October

Boston Red Sox relief pitcher Koji Uehara (19) and catcher David Ross celebrate after Boston defeated the St. Louis Cardinals in Game 6 of World Series Wednesday in Boston.
Credit Charlie Riedel / AP

They've done it again. The Red Sox have won their third World Series title in less than a decade.

Back at Fenway Park last night for Game 6 of the series, the Red Sox easily beat the St. Louis Cardinals 6-1.

The game was all but over as closer Koji Uehara took the mound in the 9th inning, but there was still plenty of excitement inside Fenway Park's 101 year old walls. Fans had barely sat down since Carlton Fisk and Luis Tiant, the Red Sox heroes of 1975's World Series Game 6, threw out the first pitch.

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World Series
7:36 am
Thu October 31, 2013

Big Papi, Worst-To-First, 1918: Your World Series Must-Knows

Boston Red Sox relief pitcher Koji Uehara points to the sky as he and his teammates celebrate their World Series victory Wednesday.
Rob Carr Getty Images

Originally published on Thu October 31, 2013 10:19 am

OK, by now you've hopefully heard that the Boston Red Sox are Major League Baseball's champions thanks to a 6-1 win Wednesday night over the St. Louis Cardinals.

The Sox won the best-of-seven World Series in six games.

With the headline out of the way, here's a cheat sheet for those of us who need to be ready with something to say about this year's Fall Classic:

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Third Title in a Decade
6:44 am
Thu October 31, 2013

Red Sox Win World Series In 6-1 Rout Of Cardinals

Boston Red Sox relief pitcher Koji Uehara (19) and catcher David Ross celebrate after Boston defeated the St. Louis Cardinals in Game 6 of World Series Wednesday in Boston.
Charlie Riedel AP

Originally published on Wed October 30, 2013 11:46 pm

The Boston Red Sox beat the St. Louis Cardinals 6-1 Wednesday to win the World Series, using timely hits by outfielder Shane Victorino, a gritty pitching performance by starter John Lackey, and the feared bat of 37-year-old designated hitter David Ortiz to capture its third world championship in a decade.

Victorino, 32, who had missed two games with a bad back, started the scoring in the 3rd with a bases-loaded double that brought in three runs. He drove in another run an inning later.

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World Series
6:57 am
Tue October 29, 2013

Red Sox Lead Series 3-2, But .733 Is The Stunning Number

Big Papi is red hot: Boston's David Ortiz has driven the Red Sox to a 3-2 lead over the St. Louis Cardinals in the World Series.
Rob Carr Getty Images

Originally published on Tue October 29, 2013 8:30 am

The headline from Monday night is that the Boston Red Sox beat the St. Louis Cardinals by the score of 3-1 to take a 3-2 lead in the best-of-seven World Series.

Game 6, which could make the Red Sox the world champions, is Wednesday night in Boston. It starts just after 8 p.m. ET and will be broadcast on Fox. If the Cardinals win Wednesday, Game 7 would be played in Boston Thursday night.

For us, the eye-popping number of the Series so far is .733.

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World Series
7:39 am
Mon October 28, 2013

All You Need To Know About The All Tied Up World Series

Kolten Wong of the St. Louis Cardinals slumps as Boston Red Sox first baseman Mike Napoli celebrates Sunday night. Wong was picked off at first base to end the game and the Cardinals' hopes of winning. Boston's 4-2 victory means the World Series is tied at 2-2.
Elsa Getty Images

The score Sunday night was:

Boston Red Sox 4; St. Louis Cardinals 2.

Which means the World Series is:

Tied at two games apiece.

The big moment Sunday:

Came in the sixth inning, when Boston outfielder Jonny Gomes hit a three-run homer.

The big mistake:

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World Series
5:23 pm
Sat October 26, 2013

World Series Game 3: Lineups Shift For Games In St. Louis

Boston Red Sox slugger David Ortiz, a designated hitter in American League ballparks, played first base in St. Louis during the 2004 World Series. He'll do the same for Game 3 of the series Saturday.
Al Bello Getty Images

Originally published on Sat October 26, 2013 5:00 pm

The all-tied World Series resumes tonight, with Game 3 between the St. Louis Cardinals and the Boston Red Sox. Ahead of the game Saturday, the main storyline centers on the change of venue to St. Louis, where the Red Sox, and their pitchers, will have to adapt to National League rules.

The shift gives the Cardinals something of an edge, at least for now, as NPR's Tom Goldman reports for our Newscast unit:

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Baseball
7:17 am
Thu October 24, 2013

All You Need To Know About Game 1 Of The World Series

The rout begins: Boston's David Ortiz, No. 34, scores in the first inning of Wednesday's World Series game against St. Louis. Mike Napoli's double brought in three runs, and the Red Sox were on the way to an 8-1 win.
Rob Carr Getty Images

Originally published on Thu October 24, 2013 12:14 pm

The score was:

Boston Red Sox 8; St. Louis Cardinals 1.

St. Louis was awful:

NPR's Mike Pesca calls the Cardinals' performance "classically-inept."

The Associated Press says the Cardinals "wrecked themselves with just their second three-error game of the season."

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Baseball
8:49 am
Sun October 20, 2013

Sox Vs. Cards: 5 Things To Know About The World Series

Jonny Gomes of the Boston Red Sox celebrates after defeating the Detroit Tigers in Game Six of the American League Championship Series at Fenway Park on Sunday.
Jared Wickerham Getty Images

Originally published on Sun October 20, 2013 2:45 pm

The Boston Red Sox clinched the American League pennant last night during a 5-2 win over the Detroit Tigers in Game 6 of the American League Championship Series.

That means the World Series matchup is set: It'll be the Red Sox vs. the St. Louis Cardinals beginning Wednesday in Boston.

With that, here are five things you should know about the upcoming championship series:

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Sports Science
10:37 am
Wed October 16, 2013

Chinese Olympic Coaches and Trainers Visit UConn

Chinese coaches, trainers, and physicians will spend the next few days learning about the latest innovations in sports science.
Shawn Kornegay UConn

A delegation of Chinese Olympic coaches, trainers, and physicians will spend the next few days at the University of Connecticut's Kinesiology Department, learning about the latest research in sports science. The department is regarded as one of the best in the country. UConn professors will speak to the delegation about research on injury rehabilitation, sports nutrition, training, hydration, and particular concerns facing female athletes.

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The Colin McEnroe Show
3:25 pm
Mon October 14, 2013

What Urinals, Jock Straps, Flip Shades and Eye Black Teach Us About Baseball

Eddie Plank, Philadelphia
Library of Congress

It's become a cliché to say everything has a story, but in baseball, you could make the argument that everything really does. Even the baseball itself is a story -- one of geography and symbolism -- an almost holy relic of American culture. Sportswriter Steve Rushin tells the story of these objects in his latest book, The 34-Ton Bat.

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Host's Diary
3:00 pm
Mon October 14, 2013

Would You Buy a Used Tennis or Football Event From This State?

Dorothea Douglass, via Wikimedia
Credit Genghis Smith / Wikimedia Commons

By the looks of things, you, the Connecticut Taxpayer, will soon own a failing tennis tournament. You already own a really bad college football program, and you recently agreed to pay a man $750,000 to stop coaching it

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Hartford Marathon
2:32 pm
Thu October 10, 2013

Healing Newtown Through Arts and Athletics

Credit Josiah Mackenzie / Flickr Creative Commons

Thousands of runners are expected to participate in Saturday’s ING Hartford marathon (or half-marathon). Among them will be 26 members of Newtown’s 12/14 Foundation Marathon Team. They want to bring attention to their mission: to build a landmark performing arts center in memory of the victims of the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting.

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Where We Live
7:22 am
Thu October 10, 2013

One Life in Afghanistan and Another at Sea

Qais Akbar Omar and Roz Savage
Picador/Chion Wolf

This week marks the 12 year anniversary of the U.S. invasion of Afghanistan. But war in this country pre-dates the U.S.’s involvement. In his memoir A Fort of Nine Towers, Qais Akbar Omar recounts his life in Kabul, pre-9/11 when Afghanistan was engulfed in civil war and Taliban rule.  Qais recently stopped by our studios to talk about life in war-torn Afghanistan and some of the happier moments.

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Youth Radio
5:37 pm
Wed October 9, 2013

High Schools Struggle To Tackle Safety On The Football Field

Football practice at Castro Valley High School in California. Proper hitting technique requires players to keep their heads up to prevent neck injuries and concussions.
Brett Myers Youth Radio

Originally published on Wed October 9, 2013 7:41 pm

The NFL adopted a new rule this season that makes it illegal for players to hit with the crown of their helmet. In other words, ramming your head into someone.

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The Colin McEnroe Show
12:08 pm
Wed October 9, 2013

"The System" of College Football and the NFL's Concussion Crisis

Credit Flickr Creative Commons, janie.hernandez55

At the heart of a new Frontline documentary is a simple question - does playing football expose you to life-threatening brain damage?

It's a question putting America's most popular sport on notice - raising concerns for moms, players' wives, and all of us who love football. Today we talk with Jim Gilmore, producer for Frontline's new documentary "A League of Denial: The NFL's Concussion Crisis."

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Football
3:05 am
Mon October 7, 2013

When It Comes To Brain Injury, Authors Say NFL Is In A 'League Of Denial'

Dave Duerson (right), in 1988. Duerson committed suicide in 2011 and wrote a note that included this request: "Please see that my brain is given to the NFL's brain bank."
AP

Originally published on Wed December 4, 2013 5:41 pm

When the Pittsburgh Steelers won four Super Bowls in the 1970s, you could argue that no one played a bigger role than Mike Webster. Webster was the Steelers' center, snapping the ball to the quarterback, then waging war in the trenches, slamming his body and helmet into defensive players to halt their rush.

He was a local hero, which is why the city was stunned when his life fell apart. He lost all his money, and his marriage, and ended up spending nights in the bus terminal in Pittsburgh. Webster died of a heart attack, and on Sept. 28, 2002, came the autopsy.

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Green Means Go, Yellow Means Duck
4:18 pm
Fri October 4, 2013

We Almost Lost Mary-Ann Tirone Smith

Why not let one of Connecticut's best-selling authors tell it in her own words?:

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The Colin McEnroe Show
9:54 am
Tue October 1, 2013

Leaning Left

Dr. Brendan Killory is the Director of Epilepsy and Functional Neurosurgery at Hartford Healthcare Medical Group.
Credit Chion Wolf / WNPR

David Wolman visited a Scottish castle designed for left-handed sword fights, and a Paris museum to inspect 19th century brains. He observed chimps with a primatologist who may help unravel the mysteries of handedness. He met with a left-handed satanist, an amputee whose left hand was reattached to his right arm. He's part of a left-handed episode of The Colin McEnroe Show

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UConn Football
4:22 pm
Mon September 30, 2013

Pasqualoni Era Ends At UConn

Outgoing UConn football coach Paul Pasqualoni.
Credit University of Connecticut

Paul Pasqualoni was fired earlier today as the University of Connecticut's head football coach. Offensive coordinator T.J. Weist will serve as the interim head coach for the rest of the season.

In may ways, the writing was on the wall for Pasqualoni. After two lackluster seasons, the Huskies are off to an 0-4 start, including a loss to division 1-AA Towson.

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Baseball Playoffs
10:11 am
Mon September 30, 2013

Baseball's Playoffs Start And So Does A-Rod's Suspension Appeal

New York Yankees third baseman Alex Rodriguez.
Kathy Willens AP

Originally published on Mon September 30, 2013 11:22 am

After a dramatic finish to the regular season that included a no-hitter on the final day and a tie that will force a special elimination game Monday night, Major League Baseball is set to start its playoffs.

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Colin McEnroe Show
12:42 pm
Fri September 20, 2013

More on Mascots

Purdue Pete Stares Into Your Soul
ckroberts61 on Flickr Creative Commons

We first got interested in the people inside sports team mascots back in 2010 but that was before we knew about Kelly Frank

Kelly Frank has done time inside several major league mascot costumes and she's a very funny human being with a lot of stories to tell about the abuse heaped on mascots-- as you're about to discover. 

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The Colin McEnroe Show
4:05 pm
Tue September 10, 2013

Breasts In The Sports World

Venus Williams.
Credit EdwinMartinez1, Flickr Creative Commons

You could argue that two trends are in a state of modern collision. Women are hitting puberty earlier than they used to, and their breasts are arriving in larger sizes.  There's a complex matrix of factors making this happen.

Average bra size in the fifties was a B. A British bra manufacturer now makes an L cup. Meanwhile, we're watching an explosion in women's sports driven here in the U.S. at least partly by Title IX.

Why are these two things on a collision course?

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Brain Sneeze
3:25 pm
Fri September 6, 2013

What was that thing on the Nose?

You probably know what apple fritters look like. (via Wikimedia Commons)

Assuming that the above does not refer to a dermatological problem, I'm guessing it might instead be one of the typical calls or emails I get every Friday from somebody who heard about something vaguely interesting on the Nose but didn't write it down. It's usually one of the endorsements. 

This the internet sensation endorsed by Theresa (who also endorsed apple fritters).

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Where We Live
1:00 pm
Mon August 26, 2013

The Worldwide Leader in Cable

Tommy Gilligan/Pointer View (Flickr Creative Commons)

Concussions in football may be the biggest threat to America’s biggest game. For 15 months, ESPN teamed up with PBS’ Frontline for a film called “League of Denial: The NFL’s Concussion Crisis.”

About a month and a half before the film premieres, ESPN has announced they are pulling out of the project.

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Television
3:10 pm
Fri August 23, 2013

Americans Abroad Say They'll Miss ESPN TV

Connecticut-based ESPN has suspended its TV broadcasts in most of Europe, the Middle East and Africa, and US sports fans living abroad say they’re having a tough time adjusting to the change.

Peter Alegi says Americans overseas love to argue about two things: U.S. politics and U.S. sports. Alegi – a self-described baseball nut - is a New Haven native who has lived for decades in Italy.  Speaking from the town of Todi, Italy, he says ex-pats will sorely miss TV broadcasts of major league baseball, the NBA and NFL.  

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