Connect with us


Why the Orioles, those around Jackson Holliday believe he can handle the pressure of being the first overall pick

Avatar Of Rajesh Khanna



Why The Orioles, Those Around Jackson Holliday Believe He Can Handle The Pressure Of Being The First Overall Pick

Jackson Holliday didn’t have anything in mind when it came to what he might do with the franchise-record $8.19 million signing bonus the Orioles provided him as the first overall pick in the Major League Baseball draft. His grandfather, too, was largely stumped, with both noting Jackson has a satisfactory truck. Only one item came to mind.

“Maybe a cookbook,” Tom Holliday said.

A longtime college coach who has spent the summer managing in the Cape Cod League, Tom Holliday said what Jackson wants more than anything is to begin his professional career, get on a baseball field and play. He’ll at last do so Thursday when he reports to the Orioles’ Florida complex a day after being introduced at Camden Yards, having not played in a game since his senior season at Oklahoma’s Stillwater High School ended in mid-May.

“The anticipation is over,” Tom Holliday told The Baltimore Sun. “And now, let’s deal with expectation.”

It will mark the first time 18-year-old Jackson is away from home, though Tom, like other Hollidays, noted he’s only a phone call away if Jackson decides he’s craving the family’s chicken parm recipe. Those circumstances might be among the greatest challenges Jackson faces on his path to return to Oriole Park.

Jackson is perhaps best equipped to handle the expectations bestowed on him of any player Tom has been around, he said, even if the pressures of being the first overall pick will long hover over his career.

His father, Matt, made seven All-Star teams in a 15-year career major league career, a period that largely served as an education in the game for Jackson. Tom recalled that when he would attend his younger son’s games and Jackson grew large enough to require his own seat, he would stay in one, studying what was happening on the field.

“He was just always inquisitive about the right stuff,” Tom said.

The Orioles, too, feel Jackson is prepared for the challenges in front of him. They chose him from a group of five highly regarded players, asking each how they felt they would handle the pressures of being No. 1.

“He basically said that it wasn’t really gonna faze him,” director of draft operations Brad Ciolek said. “He knows who he is as a person, and he’s gonna go out and do what he needs to do to be successful on and off the field. And that really kind of struck a chord with me because there’s a lot of players that we talked to maturity-wise, even in college ranks, that don’t have that kind of answer or outlook on things.”

Jackson carried that attitude even before he went through, as Ciolek put it, “the quantum leap” he experienced in strength and speed over his senior year to become considered for the top pick. As much as the tools, which executive vice president and general manager Mike Elias reiterated Jackson possesses all five of, the Orioles were impressed with his demeanor. Area scout Ken Guthrie often arrived at the field to watch Stillwater’s practices early, wanting to see Jackson’s routine before they were fully underway. Growing up, Jackson often had his uniform on two hours before he needed to be at the ballpark, Tom said.

“He just really handled himself like a big leaguer as an 18-year-old,” Guthrie said. “It just gives you the confidence to kind of go in there and have the faith enough to fight for that kid and say this is the guy that we should take.”

The selection marks the fifth No. 1 pick Elias has been involved with as an executive and ninth within the top five of the draft. He has frequently had conversations with players who are in the mix for these selections. Jackson’s poise and work ethic aligned with those of others he’s seen among that group.

“Every single player encounters bumps, and there’s going to be struggles, but we think that this is a player that is really kind of set in the right direction,” Elias said. “We just kind of hope we can keep him on the path that he’s already on.

“We’re very encouraged that he’s got the right head on his shoulders and the right direction in terms of maximizing his potential.”

Jackson admittedly does not face the pressures that enshrouded Elias’ previous first overall pick with the Orioles. Catcher Adley Rutschman was heralded as one of the top draftees in a generation when Baltimore grabbed him atop the 2019 draft, and throughout his rise up the farm system, he carried the expectations that he would arrive and lead the Orioles into contention.

With that upswing taking place in Rutschman’s first two months in the majors — the Orioles (49-49) enter Thursday four games out of a wild-card spot — Jackson will ideally arrive on a team already on a stretch of playoff runs, instead of being responsible for getting such a streak started. That doesn’t change that his climb will be scrutinized.

“It comes with some pressure, but luckily enough, I’ve got a good foundation in my family,” Jackson said. “I’m just going to handle it like I have everything and just play hard and work out and try to be the best player that I can be.”

That’s already proven to be a good one, with Holliday hitting .685 with a national-record 89 hits in his senior season. He took classes exclusively online, allowing him to spend his days working out and practicing with his father, an assistant at Oklahoma State, where Jackson was committed and Tom’s other son, Josh, leads the program. He launched himself up draft boards with the added strength, having gotten a firsthand look at other top prospects in a summer stint with Team USA.

“Every kind of little challenge that came along, he ate it up,” Tom said. “If I’ve ever seen a kid ready for it, it’s him.”

That’s largely a credit to Matt and his wife, Leslee, having experienced life in the majors and making sure to share with their children what they might be in for. Their second-oldest son, Ethan, is considered a potential top prospect for the 2025 MLB draft.

Scott Boras, whose agency represents Jackson and represented Matt and Josh during their playing careers, said Jackson having the “intimacy of greatness” in his life has him prepared for the challenges to come.

“It’s a rare library that the Holliday library gives Jackson,” Boras said. “I can tell you he’s read all the books.”

Perhaps a cookbook isn’t needed, after all.




Last man jailed for 1976 Chowchilla bus abduction will be released, officials confirm

Avatar Of Rajesh Khanna



Last Man Jailed For 1976 Chowchilla Bus Abduction Will Be Released, Officials Confirm

CHOWCHILLA, Calif. (KFSN) — It was a crime that captured the nation.

A Chowchilla bus with 26 children and a driver on board, ambushed by three armed kidnappers who buried them alive.

46 years later, two of the three convicted kidnappers have been released.

And now, the day many have dreaded for decades – the third co-conspirator has also been granted parole.

On July 15, 1976, as a bus driver and 26 children were traveling on the bus, a van suddenly appeared and blocked the road.

Frederick Newhall Woods IV, 24, and brothers James Schoenfeld, 24, and Richard Schoenfeld, 22, held them captive in a box truck at a rock quarry north near Livermore.

The men planned to demand a ransom for their return, but the children and their driver escaped hours later.

The three brothers were arrested and sentenced to life imprisonment.

In June 2012, at age 57, Richard Schoenfeld was granted parole and released from prison. Three years later, his older brother James was released.

On Wednesday, officials with the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation said Fred Woods had been granted parole.

Prosecutors considered Woods to be the mastermind of the crime.

ABC30 spoke to Larry Park, who was only 7 at the time of the abduction. He admits to still being traumatized by the incident and says he struggled with addiction for most of his life.

“Hardly a day goes by that I don’t think about this incident,” he said.

The trauma led to schizophrenia and addiction for Park, but now, decades later, he’s chosen forgiveness.

“It is possible to forgive and it is possible to find peace,” he says.

Woods was granted parole after appearing before a parole board 17 times.

Madera County District Attorney Sally Moreno said she fought to keep Woods behind bars.

“Has he demonstrated that he has been rehabilitated? And he hasn’t. As recently as 2019, he was disciplined for running businesses out of jail or prison,” Moreno said.

But after his parole was reviewed this week, the decision became official. Woods will soon be released from California Men’s Colony in San Luis Obispo.

“The kidnapping was about the money. When they arrested him, he was busy selling the rights to the movie to a Hollywood agent. It was always about the money. And those kids got into it. between him and the money and everything he had to do to get the money he would have made to those kids, including burying them alive,” Moreno says.

Some of those who defended him at his final parole hearing were unlikely supporters. Larry Park was among them.

“You come to a point where you realize that this hatred and resentment and bitterness that I’ve held all my life for these three men – Fred, Richard and James – I just want them to find some peace and comfort and have a good life,” Park says.

DA Moreno and other kidnapping survivors who participated in the parole hearing were convinced that Woods was not ready for release.

“Anything he has to do to make more money, he’ll do it. Anyone who gets in his way, you better watch out,” Moreno said.

Copyright © 2022 KFSN-TV. All rights reserved.


fbq(‘set’, ‘autoConfig’, false, ‘2417800028251481’);
fbq(‘init’, ‘2417800028251481’);
fbq(‘track’, ‘PageView’);


Continue Reading


Man charged with St. Paul murder 15 years ago found and arrested in Florida

Avatar Of Rajesh Khanna



Tajiddin Akbar, Who Was Charged In 2007 With Murder In Ramsey County And Has Had A Warrant For His Arrest Since, Was Arrested In Florida In August 2022. (Courtesy Of The Broward County Sheriff'S Office)

A St. Paul murder suspect who was charged 15 years ago and never stood trial was arrested last week in Florida.

Gov. Tim Walz announced Wednesday that he issued a warrant for the interstate extradition of Tajiddin Akbar at the request of Ramsey County Attorney John Choi.

The Ramsey County attorney’s office charged Akbar in 2007 with participating in a drive-by shooting on St. Paul’s West Side, and a warrant was issued for his arrest at the time.

Tajiddin Akbar (Courtesy of the Broward County Sheriff’s Office)

On March 7, 2007, 20-year-old Robert Renville was fatally shot with a high-powered rifle, possibly an AK-47, while sitting in a car near Ohio and Stevens streets, according to authorities. There may have been a dozen shots fired and two other people in the car were wounded in the shooting.

Lionell Thomas, Lamont Wilson and Akbar were charged the same month as the shooting. Thomas and Wilson pleaded guilty to second-degree murder and attempted murder in what prosecutors say stemmed from a dispute over a $100 cocaine deal gone bad.

Police described Akbar, who was 25 at the time, as “armed and dangerous” in 2007. Now that he’s in custody in Broward County, authorities in Minnesota and Florida will work together to extradite him back to Minnesota to face trial.

“Bringing someone who commits such an egregious act in our community to account does not have an expiration date in Ramsey County,” Choi said in a statement.

Continue Reading


Cincinnati Bengals quarterback Joe Burrow says his appendix ruptured, prompting surgery

Avatar Of Rajesh Khanna



Cincinnati Bengals Quarterback Joe Burrow Says His Appendix Ruptured, Prompting Surgery

CINCINNATI — What initially looked like an uneasiness for Cincinnati Bengals quarterback Joe Burrow turned into a more serious and urgent matter, he said Wednesday.

At his first press conference since his appendectomy on July 26, Burrow said his appendix had ruptured, prompting surgery. The third-year player will continue his progress on Wednesday as he takes part in team drills in training for the first time since the procedure.

It’s part of the plan to prepare Burrow for the start of the regular season on Sept. 11.

Burrow said he was looking to gain weight and get his body back to pre-surgery shape ahead of the team’s Week 1 game against the Pittsburgh Steelers. He said he didn’t expect to play in the pre-season. “I think it will be okay,” Burrow said. “We have a good plan when it comes to nutrition and the weight room and all that. I’m feeling good right now and I’m going to keep feeling better.”

Information available at the time indicated that it was more of a routine procedure. However, that turned out not to be the case once Burrow was examined.

“It wasn’t normal appendicitis you heard about,” Burrow said. “I didn’t really feel much. I just got checked out and had a bit of discomfort, so we thought we’d get it checked out. Turns out I had it. So we had to fix it.”

While Burrow was on the mend, he watched practices from a medical cart. Even though he couldn’t participate, Burrow said he wanted to be with his teammates so he could mentally get back on track with defending champions AFC.

“You’re in the hospital for several days and you start to feel like a sick person,” Burrow said. “So you want to hang out with the guys and feel healthy again.”

He declined to reveal how much weight he had lost as a result of the operation. Burrow said doctors allowed him to start throwing footballs two weeks after the procedure.

On Sunday, he ramped things up with his first official practice. He participated in individual drills and took all throwing reps in a 7-on-7 drill, a cue that signaled how good he was feeling. Burrow said he didn’t have the preferred speed on his throws, a side effect of the surgery.

“When they cut you up and do all that stuff, your heart is going to lose muscle and strength just to get that back,” Burrow said.

This marks the last preseason anomaly for Burrow since entering the NFL. In 2020, his rookie preseason was disrupted by COVID-19 and featured no games. Last year, Burrow played a series in the preseason finale after major knee surgery ended his rookie season.

“I would love to have a normal offseason at some point,” Burrow said. “It would be great. To start the season feeling as good as possible, but that hasn’t been the reality for three years. Make the most of what you have.

“We will try again next year.”


Continue Reading


‘Just making sure we’re all on the right page’: How a recent leadership meeting might have sparked the Chicago White Sox

Avatar Of Rajesh Khanna



‘Just Making Sure We’re All On The Right Page’: How A Recent Leadership Meeting Might Have Sparked The Chicago White Sox

The Chicago White Sox had a rough recent trip, dropping five of eight against the Texas Rangers and Kansas City Royals.

They returned home Friday for a series against the Detroit Tigers, and closer Liam Hendriks said manager Tony La Russa that weekend called a meeting with players in the leadership group.

“Just making sure we’re all on the right page, making sure we’re all united and making sure that if there was anything we needed to air, it was a safe space,” Hendriks said before Wednesday’s game against the Houston Astros at Guaranteed Rate Field. He first revealed the meeting on WMVP-AM 1000.

“But the message of the entire thing was positivity. Make sure you’re a united front on positivity and make sure we breed that because these eight to 10 guys (in the meeting), let it seep into every single person. So if I’m positive, two people next to me will become. It seeps in. It seems to have worked out all right over the last little bit. Hopefully we can keep it going.”

The Sox entered Wednesday a season-high five games over .500 and one game behind the first-place Cleveland Guardians in the American League Central. They won the first five games of the homestand, three against the Tigers and two against the Astros.

La Russa said the meeting produced a “couple of tweaks to how we prepare that were helpful.”

“But there wasn’t anything that we haven’t stressed and the team hasn’t represented,” La Russa said. “Agree or disagree, it’s really not important. But we didn’t get to the point where we stayed alive without having something special in that clubhouse. We had ups and downs, we had tough losses, and we’d come out the next day and play. So that part, which is important, the head, heart and guts of this club, has always been there. And now it’s a reason for us to get excited.”

Hendriks said José Abreu’s comments were among those that stood out.

“One thing that was stated by Abreu was how our confidence turned into cockiness,” Hendriks said. “That’s one thing that several have said is the complacency level is we just expected to come in and roll over like we did last year. That hasn’t been the case. That was not necessarily due to other teams blowing us out of the water or anything like that. It’s been to our own detriment of us thinking we can go out there and roll over teams and be expected to win.

“But I don’t think we are too far on recalling and remembering the times we did beat our own division rivals rather than how hard some of those games were to win and what we had to do in those games to actually win. Now looking back on it I think a lot of guys are realizing it’s not just an easy thing to be able to go and win the division two years in a row. That’s something hopefully we can get back.”

La Russa agreed with Abreu’s assessment.

“It’s human nature, it’s what we all do, right?” La Russa said. “How does that turn? Have success, and success comes from never giving in, never giving up, keep trying to improve how you compare and compete. But a lot of it traces back to the club felt challenged that last period before (the All-Star break), 18 games in 17 days, what were we, 11-7? We had a good record.

“We were really tested. That’s why I say (the meeting is) the latest example of communication, which has been going on since spring training one way or another.”

Asked if Johnny Cueto’s statement last week of the team needing to ”show the fire that we have — if we have any,” factored into calling the meeting, La Russa said “Actually, no. I had talked to a couple of the guys several days before. The first chance we had we were going to do it.”

Before the game, the Sox placed infielder/outfielder Leury García on the 10-day injured list with a lower back strain and recalled infielder Romy Gonzalez from Triple-A Charlotte.

“He had enough issues there where he (had to go on the injured list),” La Russa said of García. “But we’re very optimistic in 10 days he’ll be good to go.”

Gonzalez started at shortstop and batted ninth Wednesday. He is slashing .198/.282/.339 with five doubles, four home runs, 10 RBIs, 15 runs and five stolen bases in 33 games with Charlotte this season. He had three stints on the IL with the Knights.

Gonzalez said after getting sick on and off, he had his tonsils removed in late June.

“It’s been a roller coaster, but it’s great to be back, for sure,” Gonzalez said.

Gonzalez went 8-for-32 with three doubles, two RBIs and four runs in 10 games with the Sox last season.

Sox center fielder Luis Robert remained out with a sprained left wrist suffered Friday against the Tigers. La Russa said Robert received an injection Tuesday.

“The X-rays and everything, looks like it’s good for him to keep proceeding,” La Russa said. “It’s a question of when he can swing normally and not hold back.”


Continue Reading


Republicans have overstepped the bounds of abortion ban, see support from Latinos eroding, Democratic pollster says

Avatar Of Rajesh Khanna



Republicans Have Overstepped The Bounds Of Abortion Ban, See Support From Latinos Eroding, Democratic Pollster Says

Republicans, not Democrats, are experiencing a greater erosion of support from Latino voters, in part because of the reversal of the landmark decision that legalized abortion, a Democratic pollster said Wednesday.

Fernand Amandi, a director of Bendixen & Amandi, said that in the key states of Arizona, Nevada and Pennsylvania – which have competitive races for governor and the US Senate this year – Latinos favor the maintaining legal abortion by wide margins: 30 points in Arizona, 40 in Nevada and 41 points in Pennsylvania.

Those numbers are “signs that, to me, suggest that Republicans are way over the line and alienating the Hispanic vote,” Amandi said.

He pointed out, however, that Florida presents a different scenario.

“Florida is an issue that a lot of people should be concerned about if they want to see the Democrats succeed. There’s an erosion issue in Florida. We’ve lost a tremendous amount of ground in Florida. However, I don’t necessarily see any Florida-like inversions in other states,” he said.

Amandi said if Latino voters’ performance with Barack Obama in 2012 — when he got 70% of the Latino vote — is used as a yardstick, there has been erosion for Democrats at the presidential level.

But he said his recent polling shows it would be a stretch to talk about a disappearance of Hispanic votes with the Democratic Party.

Polling for Latinos in Arizona, Nevada and Pennsylvania took place in mid-May, ahead of the June 24 Supreme Court ruling overturning Roe v. Wade, but after the leak of a draft notice. Six hundred Latinos were surveyed in each state and the results have a margin of error of plus or minus 4 percentage points.

Latinos who said the overthrow of Roe v. Wade would affect their voting decision in the November midterm elections were more likely to say they would vote Democrat. Forty-five percent of all Hispanic voters in Arizona said they were more likely to vote Democratic, 40% in Nevada and 45% in Pennsylvania. A much smaller percentage, 15% said they were more motivated to vote Republican and the rest said the decision would have no impact.

Amandi and Democratic pollster Matt Barreto, who worked for Joe Biden’s 2020 presidential campaign, spoke to reporters at a briefing hosted by America’s Voice, an immigrant advocacy group.

Their goal was to reshape the narrative that has been repeated since the 2020 election that Democrats’ Hispanic vote share is eroding globally.

“In the new data from 2021 and 2022, we haven’t seen any evidence of a shift, a realignment on partisanship, on ideology,” said Barretto, co-founder of BSP Research and alumnus of the polling company Latino Decisions. “It’s more that this frustration about the economy could still linger and Democrats should keep working and talking about it.”

Republicans rejected the views of Democratic pollsters.

“Reckless Democrat policies have led to inflation, skyrocketing crime and a war on parental rights and are leaving Hispanics behind,” GOP spokeswoman Danielle Alvarez said. in a press release. “Democrats can focus on winning the Latinx vote, but Republicans are working hard to deliver for Hispanic communities, and we’ll win their vote in November.

Amandi said polls in the three states showed the Republican brand and Donald Trump performing worse than Democrats and President Joe Biden in every state where Latinos were polled.

In U.S. Senate races, Democratic candidates lead with Hispanic voters in states whose margins are more similar to their leads in 2018 than in 2010. In gubernatorial races, candidates also hold wide advances with Latino voters, according to polling data.

Amandi said his poll showed tremendous enthusiasm for voting and predicted “record Hispanic turnout in numbers in this election.”

Follow Latin NBC on Facebook, Twitter and instagram.


Continue Reading


Brett Baty smacks homer on second pitch he sees in first game as a Met

Avatar Of Rajesh Khanna



Brett Baty Smacks Homer On Second Pitch He Sees In First Game As A Met

ATLANTA — Brett Baty is officially the new kid in the Mets’ clubhouse.

The 22-year-old, wearing a jersey number that matches his age, stood in a small room in the lower level of Truist Park on Wednesday and explained everything that’s happened to him over the last 24 hours.

“I got the call yesterday, got on a flight and got here last night,” Baty said. “I’m just super excited to get out there and start playing.”

He mentioned that the original plan was to have him join the Mets on Tuesday, but air travel has a way of ruining plans.

“I didn’t make the first flight, so here I am today.”

It didn’t take long for the kid to make an impact. In his first MLB at-bat, he turned a Jake Odorizzi curveball into a line drive home run. By going yard on the second pitch of his career, Baty became the fifth player in Mets history to hit a home run in their first ever at-bat. The 377-foot blast into right field put the Mets ahead 4-0 in the second inning and sent the dugout, as well as his family, into absolute hysterics.

Baty said that not putting any big expectations on himself will be key. He also said, very diplomatically if not entirely truthfully, that getting called up to the big leagues wasn’t on his mind at all. In a very polished answer far beyond his years, he told reporters that winning games for the Triple-A Syracuse Mets was his main focus until getting the MLB promotion.

For the first game of Baty’s career, he batted eighth and played third base behind Max Scherzer. There are very few debut scenarios that could be more intense than a Mets-Braves series with the two division rivals separated by 3.5 games, but the injuries the Mets have suffered over the past week didn’t afford them the opportunity to shield Baty from the spotlight.

“It’s what every kid dreams of, for sure,” Baty said. “To make my debut against the Atlanta Braves, playing for the New York Mets, is truly a dream come true.”

As a minor leaguer for both Double-A Binghamton and Triple-A Syracuse, Baty was still able to keep one eye on the big-league club. According to him, though, his mind didn’t immediately think he was next in line after Eduardo Escobar and Luis Guillorme went down.

“I saw the injuries, but I wasn’t really paying attention to that,” Baty said. “I was just going out there every single night and trying to get better at baseball.”

The youngster from Austin, Texas, said the best advice he’s gotten was from a hitting coach who reminded him that the game is the same in the big leagues as it is everywhere else. He also got some encouragement from the Mets’ center fielder.

“As I was coming in here, [Brandon] Nimmo took me aside and was like, ‘Hey man, slow it down. It’s going to be a pretty big atmosphere, for sure. But we all trust you out there. We have your back,’” Baty said. “That’s what I wanted to hear.”

Buck Showalter praised Baty for being receptive to instruction and said that he kept things pretty low key with the third-base prospect before the game as to not overload him with information.

“He’s a big boy,” Showalter said. “He understands what’s ahead of him.”


The Mets placed Eduardo Escobar on the 10-day injured list, retroactive to Aug. 16.

His left oblique strain has been an interesting one, as Escobar hurt it on Friday, sat out on Saturday, then was forced into the game on Sunday when Guillorme’s injury occurred. On Monday, he started at third base, but with the team deciding that Baty is ready to roll, Escobar will get some time off.

“[Tuesday], I came in, and we were going to work on swinging from the right-handed side,” Escobar said. Hitting right-handed against left-handed pitchers is both the switch-hitting Escobar’s strength and the main thing that’s been hurting him recently.

“I started to feel it a little bit more,” he said. “That was when I decided there was no way I could go into a big-league game and hit lefty on lefty. That’s not the player that I am. I’ve never done that. In order to make sure that we were going to have this heal the right way, we decided to just take the ten days.”


Carlos Carrasco spoke about his own oblique injury, which was diagnosed as a low-grade strain with a probable three to four week return.

“So far, I’ve been doing a lot of exercise, a lot of recovery,” Carrasco said. “I like to work a lot, so I’ve been doing a lot of recovery.”

Carrasco said most of his work has been with medicine balls and exercise bands, trying not to make the oblique any more “angry.”

“I just want to get back in there and pitch. There’s nothing I can do. The main part is keeping my arm going.”


Taijuan Walker got an MRI after leaving Tuesday’s game prematurely.

“Pretty good news, all things considered, on the MRI,” Showalter said. “I think the Sunday start is in jeopardy, but we’re still going to hold out hope. We’ll just kind of go day-to-day right now. If you had told me last night when we left here that we’d be where we are with it, I would’ve taken that.”

Walker was not made available for comment before the game, so Showalter was asked to disclose the results of the MRI.

“I’d get thrown in medical jail for that!” he incorrectly stated. “What is it, HIPAA? What is that? What does that stand for?”


Continue Reading