to reach the top.Everyone has the feeling that we

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ATLANTA -- Matt Wisler wasnt happy when he was sent back to Triple-A Gwinnett in late July.Now he sees the one-month stay in the minors was just what he needed to reclaim his pitching form.Wisler set a career high with 10 strikeouts in six innings, Gordon Beckham drove in two runs with a pinch-hit bases-loaded double in the sixth and the Atlanta Braves beat the San Diego Padres 8-1 on Wednesday night.The Braves (50-83) no longer have the majors worst record. Minnesota (49-84) fell below Atlanta with its 13th straight loss, 8-4 to Cleveland. The Twins and Braves began the day tied in the race for the No. 1 pick in next years draft.Wisler (6-11) allowed one run on only four hits. He is 2-0 with a 1.29 ERA in two starts since returning to Atlanta on Aug. 25.I think it was in my best interests to go down, Wisler said. ... I got to just clear my head and go down and make some adjustments without really worrying about it too much.Wisler said one key adjustment has helped him gain a better downhill angle on his slider.I think thats where most of the strikeouts came, he said.He also adjusted his approach on the mound and says hes not determined to throw everything Ive got every pitch.Beckham said Wisler has come back competing instead of thinking.The Braves led only 2-1 before Beckhams two-run double off Kevin Quackenbush. Ender Inciarte added a two-run single in the four-run inning.Oswaldo Arcias fourth-inning homer gave the Padres their only run.Paul Clemens (2-4) was hurt by four walks as he allowed two runs, one earned, in three-plus innings. He left with no outs and the bases loaded in the fourth before Jose Dominguez struck out Dansby Swanson and Wisler hit into a double play.I felt really good in the bullpen, really good early in the game, Clemens said. And then things kind of got away from me.Clemens, signed by Atlanta in the 2008 draft, made his first career appearance against the Braves.MINOR EXPANSIONSThe Braves and Padres plan to make only a small number of moves on Thursday when rosters can be expanded.Braves interim manager Brian Snitker said catcher A.J. Pierzynski (left hamstring strain) and RHP Chris Withrow (right elbow inflammation) are expected to come off the disabled list.The Padres plan to recall left-hander Ryan Buchter. Infielder Alexi Amarista (left hamstring strain) is expected to join the team Friday in Los Angeles. The team recalled catcher Hector Sanchez from Triple-A El Paso on Wednesday.BLAIR PULLED FROM ROTATIONBraves rookie right-hander Aaron Blair wont make his next scheduled start on Saturday at Philadelphia. Snitker said Blair, 0-6 with an 8.23 ERA, instead will work on his mechanics with pitching coach Roger McDowell for a while. A starter has not been named for Saturdays game.Snitker said he didnt know if Blair will make another start this season.TRAINERS ROOMPadres catcher Christian Bethancourt was placed on the 15-day DL after he suffered a left intercostal strain on a swing in Tuesday nights game. I didnt know It was that painful, he said of the injury. ... RHP Tyson Ross, on the DL with right shoulder inflammation, felt discomfort following his first rehab start last week. Manager Andy Green said it was not a major setback.UP NEXTPadres: RHP Jarred Cosart will make his sixth start with Padres, and 10th overall of the season. Cosart was traded to San Diego from the Marlins on July 29.Braves: RHP Mike Foltynewicz, coming off a win over the Giants, will make his second career start against San Diego and first of the season. Blazers Jerseys From China . Jon Montgomerys gold medal in skeleton at the Whistler Sliding Centre and his subsequent auctioning off of a pitcher of beer in the village square elevated him to folk-hero status. Blazers Jerseys Outlet . Just as Montreal was settling into the first full working week of a new year, the Impact announced the appointment of their new head coach. http://www.cheapblazersjerseyschina.com/ . -- Peyton Manning will have all of his wide receivers available for the first time in a month when the Denver Broncos begin their playoff run Jan. Discount Blazers Jerseys . -- Washington Redskins tight end Fred Davis was charged Thursday with driving while intoxicated, a day after he was suspended for an NFL substance-abuse policy violation. Cheap Blazers Jerseys . With Parker having a quiet game for once, Nicolas Batum and Boris Diaw provided the scoring as France won its first major basketball title by beating Lithuania 80-66 on Sunday. It was a victory that ended a decade of frustration for Parker and a talented French generation, which lost the final against Spain two years ago and took bronze in 2005. SEATTLE -- Two years ago, the Seattle Mariners went into the final weekend of the regular season with a chance at the playoffs.They missed the postseason but winning 87 games under a first-year manager provided optimism and the expectation that the Mariners were a club on the rise. They tanked the following year, losing 86 games and forcing an overhaul of the entire front office, coaching staff and a majority of the roster.This brings the Mariners to the end of the 2016 season. Once again, Seattle was in contention for the playoffs heading into the final weekend, only to fall short. Once again, there is a buzz and optimism that Seattle could be on the cusp of being a breakout team next season.Why would this be any different than the last time Seattle was in this place two years ago?Were not the same old Mariners. Were not, Seattle manager Scott Servais said. I think if people watched us closely this year, and the personalities of the team, got to see the team, theyd realize that this is a different group. ... We laid a foundation and well build upon that, but it is not the same old Mariners.Seattle heads into the offseason still with the longest playoff drought in baseball -- now at 15 years -- but the belief it will be ending soon. Seattle was equal parts entertaining and infuriating in posting an 86-76 record that put them on the outside of the AL playoff picture.It was a roller coaster of a season. Consider that between April 24 and the end of the season, Seattle spent only one day under .500. But it took until game No. 160 for Seattle to get any better than 10 games over .500.The Mariners lived in the space between contender and average. But the late surge that put Seattle into contention validated for Servais the processes he put in place and the changes that were made from the previous regime.I wish it was easy as just putting it all on paper, Servais said. Its not. Players change, seasons change, and you just have to wait and see, but I feel great about our team, I really do.Other things to know as the team looks toward 2017:MEN IN THE MIDDLE: Robinson Cano, Nelson Cruz and Kyle Seager combinedd to post three of the better seasons for any position players in the American League.dddddddddddd Cano showed the injuries he played through last year truly were impacting his performance at the plate, rebounding to hit .298 with a career-high 39 home runs and 103 RBI. Cruz posted his third straight 40-homer season with 43 homers and 105 RBI. And Seager reached 30 homers for the first time in his career and finished with 99 RBI.RECLAIM THE THRONE: Felix Hernandez was far from kingly in 2016. Hernandezs most inconsistent season ended at 11-9 with a 3.82 ERA, his highest since 2007. He was slowed by a calf injury that cost him two months and Seattles rotation never fully recovered. Servais was blunt on the final day that Hernandez needs to be in better shape for 2017 and continue his evolution as pitcher. Hes not a high-90s strikeout machine anymore but Seattle needs him to return to being the ace of its staff.YOUNG STARS: Young closer Edwin Diaz emerged this season as a minor-league call-up who ended up becoming crucial to Seattles run. Who will it be next year? Maybe outfielders Ben Gamel and Guillermo Heredia, who give Seattle the athleticism it wants defensively in the outfield but need to be better at the plate to become regulars in the lineup. Perhaps its time for minor-league slugger Tyler ONeill to finally get his chance in the majors.One name to watch: first baseman Daniel Vogelbach. Acquired from the Cubs, Vogelbach could be primed for a major role in Seattles lineup going into next season.WIN THE WEST: Servais was thrilled to be in the race in his first season. He was bothered it was for the wild card and not the AL West. The Mariners led the division into late May and by the end of June, the wild card was the only option left. With the talent that Texas and Houston have, the Mariners have quite the task if theyre going to reach the top.Everyone has the feeling that we can make it, Cano said. I hope everyone goes and prepares themselves not to play just 162 games. Cheap NFL Jerseys Wholesale Jerseys Wholesale NFL Jerseys Jerseys From China Wholesale NFL Jerseys Cheap NFL Jerseys Cheap Jerseys ' ' '

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