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It’s rare for a team’s fifth-round draft pick to catch the eye
07-30-2019, 04:23 AM,
Post: #1
It’s rare for a team’s fifth-round draft pick to catch the eye
EAST RUTHERFORD Zach Brown Jersey , N.J. (AP) —f a head coach in minicamp, well before NFL training camps begin in earnest late next month.Rookie wide receiver Darius Slayton has certainly made his presence felt for the New York Giants, however — especially when Slayton struggled with some dropped passes during the rookie minicamp in April.In fact, Slayton was matched up Thursday with first-round draft pick DeAndre Baker, much like the two were for three years in the highly competitive world of the SEC with Slayton at Auburn and cornerback Baker at Georgia.Although the two were not in full equipment Thursday, giving Slayton a bit of an advantage, Slayton simply ran away from the defender on two long passes, causing coach Pat Shurmur to take notice.“I think the guy who’s made huge improvements in my eyes has been Slayton,” Shurmur said. “He’s done a really good job. I think we were all here during rookie minicamp when he had the yips, drops and whatnot. He’s really smoothed it out and has been making plays. He’s the first guy that comes to mind in my eyes. This time of year, it’s more about throwing and catching and less about blocking and tackling.”Slayton was very appreciative of the coach’s kind words.“It’s definitely huge in my eyes and I’m glad he said what he did,” said Slayton, who was a high school state sprint champion in the 100- and 200-meter dashes in Georgia, much like new teammate Jabrill Peppers was in New Jersey during his high school days. “I’m trying to get better, so it means a lot to me that he took notice. It’s huge for me.”Slayton was a big-play receiver for Auburn Devin Bush Jersey , averaging more than 20 yards per catch during his three seasons, scoring 13 touchdowns. He also has good size, standing 6-foot-2 and weighing 190 pounds.But Slayton dropped to the fifth round of the draft after he could have returned to Auburn for another year. He then suffered through rookie minicamp.“The first day (of rookie minicamp), I think I was trying too hard as a rookie, wanting to be super,” Slayton said. “Definitely, the one thing I never lost sleep over was my speed. I know other guys can run, so it comes down to what guy has the best technique.”Slayton knew that he struggled and needed to make an impact this week. With Baker covering him during one portion of the workout, fellow rookie and top draft pick Daniel Jones hit Slayton with two big passes. One was deep down the sideline and another was across the middle that Slayton also took for a touchdown.“A couple of times, I caught the ball and ran down the field and said to myself, ‘Yeah, I can do this,'” Slayton said. “I got some beautiful throws from Dan. It was a beautiful play to be able to run away from people.”And once again, Slayton found himself embroiled with cornerback Baker, who has impressed Giants coaches so much that he was running a good portion of the workout with the starters http://www.steelerscheapauthenticstore.c...rsey-cheap , alongside veteran Janoris Jenkins.“He’s a very good player,” Slayton said of Baker. “He’s sneaky strong. He might not look like much in street clothes, but he’s a lot stronger than I thought. I thought he was the best cornerback in the draft. The last two years, I saw a lot of him. I always thought he was a good cornerback. He’s so physical.”Slayton said that he likes the chemistry he has with Jones.“He’s a strong guy who throws a great ball,” Slayton said. “It’s easy to work with a guy like that. I just have to get open and he’s going to get the ball to me.”The two went to the Rookie Premiere for three days in Los Angeles last month, with the NFL Players Association hosting 40 of the top rookies for trading card photos and other merchandising, courtesy of Fanatics and Panini America, the trading card partner of the NFLPA.“It was a good experience for me,” Slayton said. “I got to know Dan better. We were the only two Giants out there. I’m not much of a picture taker, so it was all new to me. It was the first time I was ever to the West Coast. We did a lot of talking together out there.”Baker was admittedly not at the top of his game against Slayton because he wasn’t in full uniform.“We’re definitely at a disadvantage, because if the receiver gets a free release without pressing, it’s kind of hard to do anything,” Baker said. “It makes you better with your different techniques. You really can’t get your hands on them (receivers) in minicamp. So it’s all off-coverage and mirroring the guy and getting your feet better. That’s all you can do right now.“We’re out there competing. They won some battles and I won some battles. It’s all good to compete. It’s a good atmosphere, the DBs versus the wide receivers. Let’s see what I can do before the pads come on.”Shurmur also likes what he’s seen of Baker thus far.“He is very competitive and he’s very tough,” Shurmur said. “The corners are at a little bit of a disadvantage because there is no bump and run. Part of his charm was his ability to play up on a receiver and bump him. We think we are going to see more good stuff once training camp gets going. He’s very competitive Justin Layne Jersey , he picks things up and he works hard. Those are the things you need to see.”NOTES: Tackle Nate Solder, still recovering from late offseason ankle surgery, is happy to be part of an improved offensive line this season. The Giants traded for veteran guard Kevin Zeitler from the Cleveland Browns and signed free agent tackle Mike Remmers from the Minnesota Vikings. “Kevin brings awesome intensity to our group,” Solder said. “I like having him as a teammate.I’m excited about having him with us. The more you get to know someone, the better you feel about him.” Second-year OG Will Hernandez agreed. “Me and Nate, we have been clicking together and understand each other well. We can read each other’s mind now. Me and him, we’ve come a long way together and we’re ready to get it going. Kevin is an awesome guy and a great teammate. He’s the lead guard here and I’m going to learn a lot from him.”.The Giants were slated to resume OTAs next Wednesday, but they pushed the workouts up a day to Tuesday instead. Joey Votto hit a grand slam and celebrated with a flap, honoring the bird that prolonged his at-bat.
Votto ended a long homer drought with his third career grand slam Tuesday night, powering the Cincinnati Reds to a 9-5 victory that ended the Detroit Tigers‘ longest winning streak in two years.
Votto came to bat with the bases loaded in the third inning of a scoreless game. A black bird wandered between the plate and the pitcher’s mound, prompting Votto to call time so he could try to shoo it away. The bird stayed in the middle of the infield.
”He was in the line of vision and I was going to try to swat it away,” Votto said. ”I was thinking, `Make sure to hit the ball in the air’ and `Don’t hit it on the ground up the middle.’ I was taking care of the bird.”
Votto’s high fly ball to right field off Matthew Boyd (4-5) had just enough to avoid the outstretched glove of Nicholas Castellanos, who reached over the wall and barely missed it. Votto flapped his arms in tribute to the bird when he crossed the plate on his first homer since May 13, ending a 30-game drought.
Votto’s last homer at Great American Ball Park was May 6. He has seven homers after hitting 36 last season http://www.steelerscheapauthenticstore.c...rsey-cheap , one shy of his career high.
”I would like to think it’s all part of the season,” Votto said. ”I felt good. I have felt good. I’ve been swinging the bat well.”
Sal Romano (4-7) had a second straight solid outing, limiting the Tigers to four singles over seven shutout innings. Billy Hamilton also homered as the Reds pulled away to a 9-0 lead.
The Tigers had won five straight and moved within a game of .500. They haven’t been to the break-even mark since they were a season-best 4-4 on April 8. They’ve wasted five chances to get back.
Romano was coming off perhaps his best performance in the majors. He went a career-high eight innings and gave up one run during a 5-1 win at Kansas City on Tuesday.
Trailing 9-0, Detroit finally broke through in the ninth when Wandy Peralta walked home a run and Leonys Martin followed with a double.
Boyd walked three batters in four innings – all of them scored – and gave up a season-high five runs. He was most upset with the two walks that set up the first grand slam he’s allowed in his career.
”Walks will kill you,” Boyd said. ”Things like that (grand slam) are going to happen in this ballpark, especially when the wind is blowing out.”
INTERLEAGUE
The Reds are 12-11 against the Tigers all-time. This season, the Tigers are 1-6 in interleague play. The Reds are 5-1.
BIRD IS THE WORD
The bird that wandered onto the field during Votto’s at-bat didn’t go away. It made a mound visit and later explored other parts of the field. Fans cheered when it was shown on the video board.
INTERESTING DESIGN
The outfield grass showed the effects of a concert at Great American Ball Park on Saturday, when high heat and the field covering left yellow patterns in the stressed grass.
STATS
Martin reached in all five plate appearances, going 3 for 3 with two walks. … Cincinnati’s Tucker Barnhart also reached in all five plate appearances, going 3 for 3 with a walk. He also was hit by a pitch. … Eugenio Suarez singled to extend his hitting streak to nine games, the longest active streak on the Reds and one shy of his career high.
REDS MOVE
The Reds called up RH reliever Jackson Stephens and optioned RH reliever Austin Brice to Triple-A Louisville. Stephens was 0-0 with a 4.20 ERA in nine appearances for the Reds earlier this season.
TRAINER’S ROOM
Tigers: Reliever Drew VerHagen left the game in the seventh after getting hit in the face with a throw while covering first base. He broke his nose and had it reset. Manager Ron Gardenhire said the Tigers were working on bringing up another reliever.
Reds: RH Homer Bailey will be re-examined on Tuesday. He’s been sidelined since June 2 with a sore right knee.
UP NEXT
Tigers: Michael Fulmer (2-5) has gone seven innings and allowed one run in each of his last two starts. He’s never faced the Reds.
Reds: Tyler Mahle (5-6) is 2-0 with a 1.10 ERA in three starts in June, allowing two runs in 16 1/3 innings. He’s never faced the Tigers.
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