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  • 14 Aug
    导出博客文章TORONTO -- MVP: Most Versatile Pitcher.The humble workhorse in a wipeout
    bullpen, Andrew Miller was selected AL Championship Series MVP after his latest
    spotless outing sent the Cleveland Indians to their first pennant since
    1997.Miller tossed 2 2/3 innings in a 3-0 victory Wednesday over Toronto,
    capping a five-game series in which the lanky left-hander overpowered the
    dangerous Blue Jays.He had one strikeout in Game 5 and finished the series with
    14 -- an ALCS record for a reliever. Miller gave up three hits in 7 2/3 shutout
    innings against Toronto and earned a four-out save in Game 3.At this point of
    the year, you just find a way. Thats all that matters. Its about winning, Miller
    said. I would have given up 100 runs if we won 101-100. Thats all that matters
    is were going to the World Series, and thats a special experience and I cant
    wait.After capturing their sixth pennant, thanks in large part to Miller, the
    Indians are four wins from their first championship since 1948.Miller was
    acquired from the New York Yankees for a package of prospects in a July 31
    trade, and Cleveland had an interesting idea of how to feature him. Rather than
    restricting him to a closer role or using him only in the eighth inning, the
    Indians have been flexible with Miller -- especially in the postseason.Its so
    fun to be a part of this team, he said. I really enjoyed my time with the
    Yankees. Its tough when you leave a comfort zone and a place that you like and
    people that you like. But I knew I was coming to a team that had won a lot and
    had expectations to win more.Now, whenever the Indians have a lead in the middle
    innings, the 6-foot-7 lefty begins looming large in the bullpen -- and Miller
    time is near.With that nasty slider and a sizzling fastball he spots to both
    sides of the plate, he struck out 21 of 41 batters during the AL playoffs. He
    has allowed a mere six hits over 20 scoreless innings in his postseason
    career.Drafted sixth overall by Detroit out of North Carolina in 2006, Miller
    was part of the blockbuster deal that sent Miguel Cabrera from the Marlins to
    the Tigers after the 2007 season. Miller made 66 starts in the majors but never
    fulfilled his promise until switching to the bullpen. His first full season as a
    reliever (with Boston in 2012) provided a hint of what was possible.Miller
    posted a 3.35 ERA in 53 appearances that year, and the following season he
    dominated hitters with 48 strikeouts in 30 2/3 innings.After stops with
    Baltimore and the Yankees, Miller ended up in Cleveland, and the Indians had an
    unorthodox plan for his usage.When they were upstairs in their meetings about
    the trade talks and they were talking about Andrew, they were actually talking
    -- and I was in there listening and doing some talking -- just about how he
    would fit into a bullpen and how you could leverage him, just like we are now,
    manager Terry Francona said recently. So the thought was alive before we got
    him. We envisioned using him like we are.There are plenty of other important
    contributors in the Cleveland bullpen, particularly closer Cody Allen, who had
    32 saves during the regular season and hasnt allowed a run in the postseason.In
    fact, Indians relievers racked up 22 innings in the ALCS -- the same amount as
    their starters.But its Miller who strikes the most fear in opposing hitters
    after he whiffed a whopping 14.9 per nine innings this season while going 10-1
    with a 1.45 ERA and 12 saves.In the playoff opener against Boston, Miller
    entered in the fifth inning and pitched into the seventh. That set the tone for
    an October in which Miller could be available pretty much any time the Indians
    need him.Miller has tossed 11 2/3 shutout innings in six postseason appearances.
    Its a workload that might not be sustainable in the regular season, but with off
    days built into the playoff schedule, this approach has served the Indians
    well.All that matters are outs. All that matters are wins. It honestly does not
    matter how we get there, Miller said. And I think top to bottom, this team
    believes in that.---Follow Noah Trister at www.Twitter.com/noahtrister
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    . -- Former San Diego Chargers safety Paul Oliver was found
    dead at his Atlanta-area home Tuesday night, and a medical examiner said
    Wednesday that the ex-player committed suicide. BRIDGEPORT, Conn. -- Twenty
    years after the New World Order first invaded WCW to kickstart the most
    lucrative era in pro wrestlings history, the nWo is still over with fans.Way
    over, in fact.It was evident in 2015 at WrestleMania 31, when a surprise nWO
    run-in during a?Triple H?vs. Sting match elicited arguably the loudest reaction
    from the crowd of the night. It was?just as evident on Friday, as fans gathered
    to celebrate the legendary heel faction during an nWo night promotion at The
    Ballpark at Harbor Yard.The affection of the crowd served as no surprise for nWo
    founding members and WWE Hall of Famers Kevin Nash and Scott Hall, who joined
    stablemate Sean X-Pac Waltman as guest managers of the Bridgeport Bluefish
    independent minor league baseball team.But none of them were willing to take it
    for granted -- not after the highs and lows each has experienced, both
    personally and professionally. This was especially true for Hall, who has
    dramatically rebuilt his life over the past three years after substance abuse
    nearly ended it.I always find it really flattering when people are going to line
    up and wait in line for hours to tell you how cool you are and to take a picture
    with you, Hall said. I always have time for that. It makes you feel good.The
    towering Nash, a former college basketball player at the University of Tennessee
    before coming to fame more than a decade later as Diesel in WWE, didnt hesitate
    when asked what the high point was for the nWo since its dramatic 1996 debut at
    the WCW pay-per-view Bash at the Beach.I think its right now, managing the
    Bluefish at 57 years old, Nash said.I was just going to say the same thing, Hall
    interjected. Here we are still getting paid to be with our buddies to fly to New
    York and hang out in Bridgeport for a few hours, all because of this thing we
    did 20-something years ago? Yeah, its pretty special.Despite what became a
    rotating door of members during The Monday Night Wars era, Nash considers the
    core of what made the nWo so special to be Hall, Waltman and himself, along with
    Hulk Hogan, whose shocking heel turn provided the backbone to the factions
    success. Hes also well aware of the influence the nWo has on todays
    wrestlers.One has to look no further in WWE than?Luke Gallows,?Karl
    Anderson?and?A.J. Styles, members of the The Club, who previously made a name
    for themselves in New?Japan?Pro?Wrestling as The Bullet Club, alongside?Finn
    Bálor. The heel faction not only carry themselves in a nWo-like manner, they
    adopted Hall and Nashs iconic too sweet hand gesture that The Club still uses
    today.Waltman, 44, who still wrestles on the independent circuit, has been
    surprised by how many nWo fans are upset that Gallows and Anderson have borrowed
    the gimmick. But neither he, nor Hall and Nash, agree.In fact, its quite the
    opposite.Little kids come up to me now who couldnt have been a glimmer in their
    fathers eye during the nWo run, Hall said. And they come up [doing the hand
    gesture, and say] Hey, whats up Scott? Im like, Hey Buddy.Nash sees what The
    Club is doing as a tribute, saying that in music there are cover bands all over
    the place. He also made light of the idea that Gallows -- whom Nash calls a
    sweetheart -- is performing any kind of gimmick infringement on his character.
    He did so by referencing the bald head of the 6-foot-8 Gallows.I had five moves
    and one was the hair flip, Nash said. I was known for my hair. If [Gallows] cant
    do one of my five moves, he cant really infringe me.Few ideas, if any within the
    world of wrestling, are truly original concepts pulled out of thin air.We stole
    cutting the T-shirt like Mike Tyson and now I saw?Big Cass?the other day with a
    T-shirt cut like Tyson, continued Nash. Everything gets stolen from somebody. We
    stole?from Tyson, they steal it from us.The full-circle irony in this situation
    is that even the nWo concept itself was borrowed. Its creator, former WCW
    president Eric Bischoff, saw the success of a similar invasion angle while
    attending a New Japan show in early 1996 and adapted it soon after.For Hall, 57,
    the connection with Gallows and Anderson goes deeper as his son, 25-year-old
    Cody Hall, was signed to New Japan in January 2015 and debuted as a trainee, or
    young boy, of The Bullet Club.Im happy for anybody who gets an opportunity or a
    break in the wrestling business, Hall said.ddddddddddddThose guys were part of
    the Bullet Club in Japan and my son Cody said they treated him good. If you
    treat my kid good, youre in with me.Over the past two decades, Japanese
    wrestling has played a factor in where all three of these guys have been and
    where they continue to go -- and it has been making a big impact of late in the
    modern WWE as well. When it comes to which of todays WWE superstars the nWo
    members believe can be a crossover superstar for years to come, Waltman had one
    name in mind above the rest.Im going to go with a little bit of a different
    answer than some people say, Waltman said. I think Shinsuke Nakamura is going to
    be a really big deal. Besides the in-ring skills, the charisma is amazing. I
    dont compare him to anybody because hes like the original.Hall was just as quick
    to mention Bálor and current WWE Universal champion?Kevin Owens?as young guys
    who are really delivering the goods. But he backed up Waltmans words?on
    Nakamura, a native of Japan who captured the NXT championship last month, saying
    he could become the first foreign-born wrestler to be the true face of the
    WWE.Hes kind of like Liberace and Prince stuffed together, hes just crazy, Hall
    said, before Waltman added the names of Michael Jackson and Freddie Mercury. One
    of the biggest struggles that a wrestler can have is fighting their way to that
    kind of relevance, and it certainly didnt come that easy for any of the members
    of the nWo.Hall, who went on to tag team fame in WCW with Nash as The Outsiders,
    recalled the hits and misses of his early characters and how difficult it was to
    feel comfortable in the mid-1980s as top babyface Big Scott Hall in the AWA.For
    me, I was really struggling because I was Scott Hall in the gym, and Scott Hall
    in the grocery store, and in the ring, Hall said. Until I got a gimmick, a look,
    and got to be a character, thats when I started making strides. As Scott Hall, I
    didnt have a gimmick so I didnt know what to do. Once I became the Bad Guy [as
    Razor Ramon with WWE in 1992] it was a little easier for me to gain
    insight.Nash, who has transitioned to acting in recent years with memorable
    roles in a pair of Magic Mike films, believes his most forgettable wrestling
    character to be Oz -- a short-lived WCW gimmick, memorable only for the epic
    entrances.But Nash believes each stop on his journey was equally important, with
    the Oz character getting him a match in Japan at the Osaka Dome in October 1991.
    The show marked the first time wrestling fans of any kind had chanted his
    name.When I came out and the smoke cleared I was like, What are they saying?
    Nash said. I thought, Oh my God, for the first time in my life Im over. So you
    never know. You go 12 hours in the opposite direction and not exactly kosher
    becomes [accepted], so I dont know. If you make it, all the pieces fit in the
    puzzle. I do believe in the butterfly effect where if you take some piece out of
    it, you dont end up here.Asked whether the nWo could have the same impact had it
    debuted today with WWE, considering the evolution of the business and the
    difference in backstage politics, Nash had no doubt.I think once you know how to
    get over, you know how to get over, Nash said. I mean, it would be at everyones
    expense but we would get over. I mean, it would be guaranteed money. It wouldnt
    be [Ted] Turner [WCW] money though, Ill tell you that.On this night, the home
    team won, 8-6, over the South Maryland Blue Crabs, with the entire Bluefish team
    wearing special black nWo jerseys. Nash, the most outgoing of the trio, jokingly
    gave himself the credit, saying he had never been brought to a baseball game as
    part of a promotion (he estimates 50-to-60 games in all) without the home team
    winning.This may not have been the bright lights of WrestleMania or a venue as
    large as the Osaka Dome, but 20 years after the nWo debuted, theyre still
    drawing nostalgic crowds.Nash could only chuckle when asked why.Ask Paul
    McCartney why he still puts 60,000 people in the seats, Nash said. Theres only
    one, baby! Theres only one! For life. Were not dead yet. ' ' '