Venable To Become First Base Coach, Baseball News

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Published on November 22 2017 6:07 am
Last Updated on November 22 2017 6:07 am

By ESPN

Will Venable is leaving the Chicago Cubs' front office to be their first-base coach.

The former major league outfielder was hired last summer as a special assistant to president of baseball operations Theo Epstein and general manager Jed Hoyer.

The 35-year-old Venable replaces Brandon Hyde, who has been promoted to bench coach for manager Joe Maddon.

The Cubs also announced Tuesday that they had hired Jim Benedict as a special assistant to baseball operations. Benedict spent the previous two seasons as the vice president for pitching development for the Miami Marlins.


Jackie Robinson Jersey Sells For $2.05 Million

 A rare jersey from Jackie Robinson's historic rookie season with the Brooklyn Dodgers 70 years ago has sold for $2.05 million at auction.

The jersey, part of a Heroes of Sport offering by Heritage Auctions, was accompanied by a letter from Robinson's widow, Rachel, saying it is the one brought home by the Hall of Famer at the end of the 1947 season, when he became the first black player in the majors and earned Rookie of the Year honors.

The sale price set a record for a jersey from the post-World War II era, easily topping the $573,600 for a 1955 Sandy Koufax rookie jersey with the Dodgers.

A Babe Ruth jersey from 1920, his first year with the Yankees, sold for $4,415,658 at an auction in 2012, setting the record for a sports memorabilia item.

Another item from Heritage's auction, which ended Sunday, was a customized pair of Nike Air Jordans worn by Michael Jordan in November 1985 that went for $55,000 -- setting a record for the iconic sneaker.


Halladay's Plane Climbed Before Crash

Retired pitcher Roy Halladay sped his small sport plane low over the Gulf of Mexico minutes before his fatal crash two weeks ago, climbing sharply in the final seconds before diving into the water, federal investigators said in a preliminary report released Monday.

National Transportation Safety Board investigator Noreen Price placed no blame for the Nov. 7 accident near Tampa, simply laying out the facts as gleaned from the plane's data recorder and eyewitnesses. A final report with conclusions could take one to two years.

Price says Halladay, 40, had taken off from a lake near his Tampa-area home about 17 minutes before the crash, taking his ICON A5 to 1,900 feet before dropping to 600 feet as he neared the coastline. He then dropped to 36 feet when he reached the water. While flying at about 105 mph, Halladay skimmed the water at 11 feet, flying in a circle before climbing to 100 feet, the plane's data showed.

A witness told investigators the plane climbed to between 300 and 500 feet when it turned and went into a 45-degree dive. It slammed into the water and flipped.

Halladay's body was found with the plane, which was severely damaged. The plane itself was equipped with a parachute, but it was not deployed.

Halladay, a former Toronto Blue Jays and Philadelphia Phillies star, received the plane from ICON on Oct. 10 and was one of the first to receive the model. In one of many enthusiastic tweets about the plane, Halladay said it felt "like flying a fighter jet." He had about 700 hours of flight time after getting his license in 2013, the report says. He had 51 hours in ICON A5s, including 14 in the plane that crashed.

Rolled out in 2014, the A5 is an amphibious aircraft meant to be treated like an ATV, a piece of weekend recreational gear with folding wings that can easily be towed on a trailer to a lake, where it can take off from the water.

The man who led the plane's design, Jon Murray Karkow, died while flying an A5 over California's Lake Berryessa on May 8, a crash the NTSB attributed to pilot error.

Another A5 crashed in April, making a hard landing in the water off Key Largo, Florida, injuring the pilot and his passenger. The pilot told investigators the plane descended faster than he expected.

Halladay, an eight-time All-Star, pitched a perfect game and a playoff no-hitter in 2010. He played for the Blue Jays from 1998 to 2009 and for the Phillies from 2009-13, going 203-105 with a 3.38 ERA.