By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great journalism.
Sports around the nation
Placeholder Image
Packers GM,
coach say no
to Favre’s release

GREEN BAY (AP) — The Green Bay Packers’ general manager and coach don’t plan to grant Brett Favre’s request for his release. If he does rejoin the team, they told The Associated Press, it won’t be as the starting quarterback.
And Favre is unlikely to accept a backup role, GM Ted Thompson and coach Mike McCarthy acknowledged Saturday in their first public comments since the 38-year-old Favre demanded his release this week.
A trade may be the best resolution, but Thompson and McCarthy declined to discuss that possibility. Thompson said he had not received any inquiries from other teams as of Saturday morning.
Favre asked the Packers to release him so he can return to the NFL with another team after apparently being told his latest retirement reversal wasn’t welcome news in Green Bay. The team said it would do “what’s right” in response to Favre’s request, which was first reported by ESPN on Friday.
“Brett earned and exercised the right to retire on his terms,” the team’s statement said.
“We wanted him to return and welcomed him back on more than one occasion. Brett’s press conference and subsequent conversations in the following weeks illustrated his commitment to retirement. The finality of his decision to retire was accepted by the organization. At that point, the Green Bay Packers made the commitment to move forward with our football team.”
The 38-year-old Favre retired March 6 after a 17-year career, openly sobbing as he contemplated a future without football. But almost immediately, he began dropping hints that he was having second thoughts.
“We’ve communicated that to Brett, that we have since moved forward,” Thompson said. “At the same time, we’ve never said that there couldn’t be some role that he might play here. But I would understand his point that he would want to play.”
When asked whether that role might be as a backup or coach, Thompson said: “not a coach.”
Added McCarthy: “He did ask about that, though.”
Favre, who led the Packers to a Super Bowl title after the 1996 season, held a tearful news conference to announce his retirement March 6. The Packers planned to begin the season with Aaron Rodgers as the starting quarterback.
McCarthy said he and Thompson were in constant communication with Favre throughout the offseason.
“Quite frankly, it’s a little gut-wrenching as an organization to go through it, and certainly for Mike and myself,” Thompson said. “This stuff hurts a lot of people. I mean, it hurts. I’m not talking about physically hurting, but the sensitivity. We understand where the fans are coming from. This is a hot-button issue that surpasses anything I’ve ever gone through.”

Padres win on Hairston’s hits, Peavy pitching

SAN DIEGO (AP) — Pitching at home sure has its benefits for Jake Peavy.
The San Diego Padres’ ace made quick work of the Atlanta Braves on Friday night, then hustled out as quickly as possible to catch a Toby Keith concert.
“I should have been a cowboy,” quipped Peavy, a good ol’ boy from Alabama. “If I get there in time, I get to see Toby sing a little bit.”
Backed by a triple and double by hot-hitting Scott Hairston, Peavy led the Padres to a 4-0 win over the Braves. The reigning NL Cy Young Award winner held Atlanta to four hits and struck out seven in seven innings. He won his second straight start and for the third time in six starts since coming off a monthlong stay on the disabled list due to a swollen right elbow.
Peavy (7-5) lowered his home ERA to 1.45, the lowest in the NL and second-lowest in the majors. It was the fourth time this year he didn’t allow an earned run in a home start.
“You know what? It was a good night,” Peavy said.
The right-hander then praised rookie catcher Luke Carlin.
“The amount of work that he puts into it and the amount of pride he takes catching me every fifth day, I’m going to give him some props because he has sure done a nice job,” Peavy said.
Manager Bud Black was impressed with Peavy.
“When he’s pitching here, there’s just a little different feeling,” said Black, who was impressed with the life on Peavy’s fastball and the curveballs he threw, including a few to Chipper Jones. “I think that you find he sets the tone on his day. You know from the time he goes out there that he’s pitching with a lot of emotion. I think our guys feed off that.”
Hairston agreed.
“Obviously he comes out and does his thing,” Hairston said. “He’s been pitching great lately. He adds fire to the game. I would say guys get motivated from that. It’s encouraging to see a guy just lay it out there. I think all our pitchers do that. But there’s just something about Jake.
“I’m just glad we were able to get him the run support tonight.”
Atlanta’s best scoring chance was in the fifth, when it had runners on second and third with one. But Brent Lillibridge grounded out and pinch-hitter Greg Norton flied out to end the threat.
“Peavy’s tough,” Atlanta manager Bobby Cox said. “You’re not going to get a lot of runs off him, especially in this ballpark.”
Said Jones: “He threw me one pitch over the middle of the plate and I fouled it off. Otherwise, everything I saw was on the black. I can’t complain about the calls.”
Hairston is 17-for-34 (.500) with six doubles, five homers, nine RBIs and nine runs scored in his last 11 games since June 25, hitting safely in nine of the 11 games.
Trevor Hoffman came on with runners on first and second and two outs in the ninth and struck out Lillibridge to earn his 17th save in 20 chances. He extended his big league career record to 541.
Hairston tripled into the gap in right-center off Jo-Jo Reyes leading off the first and scored on Edgar Gonzalez’s groundout. He doubled with one out in the third and advanced courtesy of the Gonzalez brothers - taking third on Edgar’s single to right and scoring on Adrian’s single up the middle.
The Padres added two runs in the sixth. Pinch-hitter Jody Gerut singled in Adrian Gonzalez and Kevin Kouzmanoff came around on a two-base error by left fielder Gregor Blanco.
Reyes (3-8) lost his fourth straight decision. He lasted only four innings, allowing two runs and five hits. He made his major league debut against the Padres at Petco Park just more than a year earlier.
The Braves have scored only nine runs in Reyes’ eight losses.
Atlanta’s Brian McCann had three hits.

GSU Eagle
summer update

Special to the Courier

STATESBORO — The final NCAA Division I baseball statistics were released and Georgia Southern University finished ranked among the Top 4 in five offensive categories.
The 2008 Eagles (33-25 overall) put up record-breaking numbers, finishing second nationally in: batting average (.346), scoring (10.3 runs p/g, 595 overall), home runs per game (1.97, 114 overall) and slugging percentage (.584). Georgia Southern also ranked fourth nationally in doubles per game, averaging 2.66 per contest (154 overall).
GS finished 17th nationally in stolen bases per game (1.86, 108 overall), 13th in walks (302), 36th in hit by pitches (80), 10th in sacrifice flies (37) and 60th in fielding percentage (.969). Last year the Eagles broke five season program records and posted second-highest numbers in two more categories.
Chris Shehan, an All-America outfielder and current prospect in the Atlanta Braves organization, ended the year second in batting average (.438), runs per game (1.45, 84 overall) and on-base percentage (.557). In addition, Shehan finished 10th in home runs (22), 16th in RBI per game (1.33) and third in slugging percentage (.835).
Currently with the Danville Braves in the Rookie Class A Appalachian League, Shehan is batting .247 with 10 runs scored, three home runs and nine RBI in 20 games.
Sign up for our e-newsletters