KANSAS CITY, Mo. Lester Hayes Raiders Jersey
. -- Royals ace James Shields is open to staying in Kansas City beyond this season. That news should make the thousands of fans, already flying high over the teams strong finish a year ago, feel even better as they turned out for their annual FanFest on Friday. The Royals exercised their $13.5 million option on Shieldss contract shortly after going 86-76 last season, their best finish since 1989. The durable right-hander was a big reason behind the success, going 13-9 with a 3.15 ERA in an American League-leading 228.2 innings. Shields told a small group of reporters at Bartle Hall that he was willing to discuss an extension, but he said those talks with general manager Dayton Moore have not taken place. "Id definitely be open-minded to it," Shields said. "A player in my position, where I have one more year left before free agency, I mean, Im definitely open to it. I like Kansas City. I like the organization and I like the direction were going." If Shields went to the open market, its unlikely that the Royals would be a player in the chase. There were reports this off-season that he would seek a contract similar to that of former Royals star Zack Greinke, who signed a $147 million, six-year deal with the Dodgers last season. "Thats absolutely not true at all," Shields said. "I have no clue where he got that from, to be honest with you. Ive had no discussions with Dayton at all. "If Dayton wants to talk about it, Im more than willing to sit and talk about it. But during the season, my main focus is trying to win games and get some wins for this team." Pitchers and catchers are due to report to Surprise, Ariz., for the start of spring training on Feb. 14. The first full-squad workout is Feb. 20. Most of the Royals key pieces return from last season, when they contended into September for the first time in a decade. Their two biggest holes were filled by trading reliever Will Smith to Milwaukee for right field Norichika Aoki and signing Omar Infante to solidify second base. "I didnt think our defence could get any better," Shields said, "but theyre definitely filling some holes that we had. And theyre great additions to our lineup." Then theres the starting rotation, where Ervin Santana has become a free agent. While the right-hander has yet to sign elsewhere, the Royals appeared to move on when they signed left-hander Jason Vargas to a contract early in the off-season. Along with Jeremy Guthrie, the first three spots in the rotation are set. That leaves two up for grabs among a handful of candidates, including starters-turned-relievers Wade Davis and Luke Hochevar, veteran Bruce Chen, left-hander Danny Duffy and flame-thrower Yordano Ventura. "Ive just been working hard, resting my arm," said Ventura, who had a 3.52 ERA in three late-season starts in Kansas City. "Ive just been getting ready because I want to get out there and make the team." That doesnt figure to be an easy task given the glut of competition. "Its a competitive game anyway," Davis said. "Why not do it from within a little bit?" Davis said that he spent the off-season in the weight room, and pronounced himself more ready for this season than any previous year. He also said that hes already been throwing some bullpen sessions, giving him a head start on reporting for spring training. "Im definitely going in to start," said Davis, who began last season in the rotation but was demoted to the bullpen when he proved ineffective. "Hopefully I get that opportunity." Lee Smith Jersey
. Both sides are having domestic troubles going into their meeting in Tuesdays Champions League round of 16 first-leg match, but it is arguably Barcelona which has more to prove. Saturdays 3-2 loss at Osasuna, coupled with Real Madrids 4-2 win over Levante on Sunday, left the defending Spanish champion 10 points behind its bitter rival, which has dropped only eight points all season. Aldon Smith Jersey
. Sending the soaring Washington Capitals to their first loss of the season will certainly help their cause. Jordan Eberle had a goal and an assist and Nikolai Khabibulin made 34 saves, and the Oilers hung on for dear life to edge the Capitals 2-1 Thursday. http://www.theraidersteamproshop.com/Youth-Gabe-Jackson-Elite-Jersey/
. While the 23-year-olds progress had some teammates saying he was looking pretty good, Stamkos offered a more tempered approach to his return. "I dont feel where I need to be in order to play a game yet, but its getting there," he told reporters after practice at the Bell Centre in Montreal.New Orleans, LA (SportsNetwork.com) - International Star used his season debut to explode onto the Kentucky Derby trail with a victory in Saturdays 71st running of the $200,000 Lecomte Stakes at Fair Grounds. The Lecomte is the first of the major 3-year-old stakes at Fair Grounds leading to the $750,000 Louisiana Derby on Mar. 28. Coming up on Feb. 21 is the Risen Star Stakes. International Star, ridden by Miguel Mena from the rail post, was 9-1 in the 11-horse field going a mile, 70 yards. Trained by Mike Maker, the colt settled along the inside until moving outside entering the stretch. Owned by Ken and Sarah Ramsey, International Star moved to the lead inside the furlong pole and drove through the stretch for a 2 1/2-length victory over War Story. The plan was to save ground on both turns and then he came out at the three- sixteenths pole and came rolling, Mena said. He was running hard, but he kind of pulled himself up a little at the end when he found himself alone on the lead. Tiznow R J was third followed by Another Lemon Drrop, Savoy Stomp, Hero of Humor, 3-1 favorite Eagle, Dekabrist, Runhappy, Killingit and Four Leaf Chief. Willie Brown Raiders Jersey
. The time for the Lecomte was 1:43.62 on a fast track. International Star, a son of 2000 Kentucky Derby winner Fusaichi Pegasus, claimed $120,000 with the win. The colt has won three of seven starts for $320,979. The Ramseys and Maker combined to win last years Lecomte with Vicars in Trouble. Hes been training very well, Maker said. We expected a big race - maybe not that big - but he was coming into the race great. Well bring him back to Florida and take a hard look at the Risen Star. The 3-year-old won the Grey Stakes at Woodbine last October and earlier recorded seconds in Belmonts Rockville Center Stakes and Saratogas With Anticipation on the turf. International Star was ninth, just 3 1/4 lengths off the winner, in the Breeders Cup Juvenile Turf at Santa Anita on Oct. 31. International Star returned $20.40, $8.80 and $5.20. War Story paid $7.20 and $4.60, and Tiznow R J paid $4.20 to show. Cheap NFL Jerseys Wholesale Jerseys Wholesale NFL Jerseys Jerseys From China Wholesale NFL Jerseys Cheap NFL Jerseys Cheap Jerseys Cheap NFL Jerseys China
' ' '