s.Manfred also discounted the theory th

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SAN DIEGO -- Major League Baseball commissioner Rob Manfred acknowledged the games rising home run numbers Tuesday, but he expressed confidence that they arent a product of juiced players or juiced baseballs.Each MLB team is averaging 1.16 home runs per game this season -- the highest home run rate since the average of 1.17 per game during the height of the steroid era in 2000. The home run rate, which ebbed at 0.86 per game in 2014, began to spike during the second half of last season, but Manfred said MLB has no reason to think the rising power numbers are a product of increased steroid use.The increase in the number of home runs takes place against a different backdrop, Manfred said in his annual All-Star Game session with the Baseball Writers Association of America. Major League Baseball does 22,000 drug tests a year. The World Anti-Doping Agency says we have one of the best testing programs in the world, let alone in professional sports. Our investigative capacity in the area of performance-enhancing drugs is probably the best in the world. So Im much less concerned that this is due to [PEDs].We think it has to do with the way pitchers pitch and the way hitters are being taught to play the game. Youve seen some unusual developments in terms of home run hitters being up in the lineup to get them more at-bats. So we think it has more to do with the game this time around, because were comfortable were doing everything we can on the performance-enhancing drugs front.Since January, 70 players (13 big leaguers and 57 minor leaguers) have been suspended for violations of baseballs joint drug testing agreement. Several active players -- most notably, pitchers Justin Verlander and Jeremy Guthrie and outfielder Jeff Francoeur -- have pushed for stiffer penalties as a disincentive to players who might use PEDs.Manfred also discounted the theory that changes in the baseball used by MLB might be contributing to the rising power numbers. He said MLB has done extensive testing on the baseballs and found no changes.In 2013, Nippon Professional Baseball commissioner Ryozo Kato resigned amid a scandal over livelier baseballs in Japan. The scandal broke after Wladimir Balentien of the Yakult Swallows hit 60 homers to break the record of 55 shared by Sadaharu Oh, Alex Cabrera and Tuffy Rhodes.There are certain mistakes in life that if you pay attention to whats going on around you, you are not inclined to make, Manfred said. There was a scandal in Japan over the baseball being changed that cost the commissioner his job. I like my current gig, so I think you can rest assured that the baseball is the same as it was last year.Cheap New Balance Shoes From China .Y. - General manager Billy King says the Brklyn Nets are lking to add a big man and confirmed the team worked out centre Jason Collins, who would become the first openly gay active NBA player if signed. New Balance Shoes From China . -- The bs poured down on Tom Brady and the New England Patriots at the end of a horrible first half. http://www.cheapnewbalance.net/ . Jim Rutherford, President and General Manager of the Carolina Hurricanes, announced Wednesday that the team would assign Swedish forward Elias Lindholm to his nations team for the upcoming tournament. New Balance Shoes Clearance . It was the kind of score that might make everyone else wonder which course he was playing. Except that Graeme McDowell saw the whole thing. Crouched behind the 10th green at Sheshan International, McDowell lked over at the powerful American and said, "Ive probably seen 18 of the best drives Ive seen all year in the last two days. Cheap New Balance Shoes Online . -- Bryant McKinnie came out of his stance and lowered his shoulder into a practice squad player, causing a crisp thud to reverberate in the Miami Dolphins practice bubble.METAIRIE, La. -- Reinforcements are on the way for the New Orleans Saints defense.First-round draft choice Sheldon Rankins is expected to make his NFL debut Sunday at the San Francisco 49ers after the defensive tackle began the season on injured reserve with a broken fibula suffered in training camp.Hes gettin around gd. And we anticipate this is the week for him, Saints coach Sean Payton said of the defensive tackle from Louisville, whom the Saints selected with the No. 12 pick in the draft.This is the first week Rankins is eligible to play under the NFLs rule for players coming off of injured reserve. He began practicing the first day he was eligible two weeks ago.The Saints injury-riddled defense is also likely to get top cornerback Delvin Breaux back Sunday from his own broken fibula, which he suffered in Week 1. Breaux declared himself 115 percent healthy on Wednesday after participating in team drills for the first time -- though he stressed that it remains a coaches decision.Both developments are huge for a defense that got off to an abysmal start this season bbefore showing recent signs of growth.dddddddddddd After an 0-3 start, the Saints are now 3-4. And after two solid defensive performances in a row, they now rank 28th in yards allowed per game (397.4) and 31st in points allowed per game (30.7). Only the 49ers are worse.Rankins will probably be on some sort of pitch count in his NFL debut -- especially at a defensive tackle position where the Saints do a lot of rotating in general. The gd news is that veteran Nick Fairley has been a strong addition for New Orleans at the same three-technique tackle position, with 3.5 sacks. The two of them might even play side-by-side in pass-rushing situations.Rankins (6-ft-2, 305 pounds) was a versatile and disruptive presence at Louisville, with 14 sacks and 26.5 tackles for loss over his final two seasons. He showed signs of promise in the summer -- highlighted by an interception against Tom Brady during joint practices with the New England Patriots. ' ' '

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