Steelers' Harrison suspended for one game


Steelers' Harrison suspended for one game

From Comcast SportsNet

PITTSBURGH (AP)Pittsburgh Steelers linebacker James Harrison has been suspended for one game without pay for his hit last week on Browns quarterback Colt McCoy.

NFL Executive Vice President Ray Anderson said Tuesday the suspension is the result of Harrisons fifth illegal hit against a quarterback in the past three seasons.

Harrison, who can appeal, laid a helmet-to-facemask hit on McCoy during the Steelers 14-3 victory over the Browns. The 2008 NFL Defensive Player of the Year was penalized for roughing the passer on the play and said Monday he believed the hit didnt warrant further punishment.

If the suspension isnt overturned or reduced on appeal, Harrison wont be allowed to be at team facilities until next Tuesday, Dec. 20.

Coach Mike Tomlin said the team respects the leagues decision while acknowledging Harrisons play was a foul.

Were disappointed for James because we know how hard hes worked to play within the rules, Tomlin said. We accept the judgment rendered by the league office and well move forward.

He is the second player suspended by the league this season for on-the-field conduct. Detroit Lions NT Ndamokung Suh was suspended two games for stomping on an opponent last month.

The league says Harrison was fined six times in 2009 and 2010. He was fined 125,000 last year for a series of hits, growing so frustrated at one point he threatened to retire.

Instead, he returned and has remained effective this season while keeping it clean. He has 10 sacks despite missing a month with a fractured right orbital bone. The hit on McCoy marked the first time this season hed been flagged for an illegal hit.

Morning Update: Cubs shut out by Indians in Game 1 of World Series

Morning Update: Cubs shut out by Indians in Game 1 of World Series

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CLEVELAND - The Cubs didn't look like a team that just got shut out and struck out 15 times in Game 1 of the World Series in the visiting clubhouse at Progressive Field.

Maybe it's because they have endured offensive slumps before this postseason - 21 straight scoreless innings against the Dodgers in the National League Championship Series - and bounced back just fine to score 23 runs in three games to clinch the NL pennant.

Or maybe it's because they nearly got to Andrew Miller, who has taken over title of Best Pitcher on the Planet.

"I hope we [get to see him tomorrow]," Cubs shortstop Addison Russell said. "We got beat by a pretty good ballclub today. On paper, they beat us. It leaves a sour taste in our mouth, but tomorrow's a new day."

That's the Cubs' attitude normally and that spirit has only strenghtened with Kyle Schwarber back in the lineup.

The Cubs obviously didn't score against Miller - who ran his career posteason scoreless streak to 22 innings - but they did force him to throw 46 pitches in two innings and had the best overall outing against the dominant left-hander of any team in 2016:

The first two batters Miller faced - Kyle Schwarber and Javy Baez - worked a walk and then laced an 0-2 single to left field to load the bases. 

Miller then worked out of the bases loaded jam with a shallow pop-out and back-to-back strikeouts, but the next inning, the Cubs made him work again with a Kris Bryant walk and Ben Zobrist single.

Miller avoided that jam by striking out Schwarber to end the inning.

"We put some really good at-bats against these guys today," Schwarber said. "We just didn't come up with the knock when we needed to, but that's baseball."

It was the most pitches Miller has thrown in an outing since September 2011 and the Cubs tallied five different full counts against him in the two innings. 

"Guys getting to see him in the first game I think is always to a hitter's advantage," Anthony Rizzo said. "He's as advertised. He bears in when needed to and gets outs and that's the name of the game."

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With a taxing outing and another game right away Wednesday night, the Cubs feel confident they can get to Miller if he does come back and work again in Game 2.

"That's huge. I'm sure he's going to be a little tired," Bryant said. "He was doing his job, going max effort. 

"Any time you can get their best guy out of the bullpen to throw a lot of pitches and have good at-bats off of him, it gives us a bunch of confidence."

Even if Miller feels fine physically, the Cubs hitters have all seen him now and they can learn from watching his stuff and how he approached hitters in Game 1.

The Cubs had a rough showing against Corey Kluber - only four hits and nine strikeouts in six innings - but he's a Cy Young contender and there are major question marks surrounding the Indians' Game 2 and 3 starters (Trevor Bauer and Josh Tomlin).

In general, the Cubs came away feeling confident despite putting a goose egg in the runs column.

"I'm a believer," manager Joe Maddon said. "I know we're going to be fine. ... [Kluber], he's in a different league. So if we can continue to work these same kind of at-bats, I feel good moving forward.

"And that's not to denigrate anybody we're going to face. I just thought we actually did better than that all looked tonight. So I'm eager to get back out there and play again tomorrow."