Your Thursday Morning Roundup

Phillies Yankees betting preview august 6
Photo credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

Has Zach Eflin been the best Phillies pitcher this month? I’d say so.

The No. 5 starter finished June with a 5-0 record and a 1.76 ERA after throwing seven shutout innings and giving up just four hits as the Phils earned a 3-0 win over the Yankees and their soft fans.

There wasn’t a ton of offense from either team outside of the second inning. That’s when Rhys Hoskins hit a three-run bomb with two outs for his 30th career home run. He accomplished that mark in just his 119th game in the majors, ahead of Chuck Klein (132) and Ryan Howard (134).

Once Eflin’s night was done, Seranthony Dominguez took control for the final two innings, allowing no hits with three strikeouts in back-to-back one-two-three innings. That gives the bullpen a much needed night’s rest.

Even more help could come later this weekend. Pat Neshek is having another rehab assignment on Friday and could be activated shortly after.

The Phillies meet the Washington Nationals once again after winning two games against them last week in D.C. Aaron Nola gets the start in the first of the four-game home series. First pitch is at 7:05 PM on NBC Sports Philadelphia.

In other Phillies news, former Phil Jayson Werth is retiring.

The Roundup:

The race for Kawhi Leonard continues. ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reported the Sixers were one of four teams that made offers to the Spurs. However, the Lakers reportedly reopened talks with San Antonio for Leonard.

LeBron James is simple: Get him a max deal, and probably Kawhi or Paul George. Getting Leonard could be tricky, and the right deal has to happen.

Speaking of PG, he’s opting out of his deal with OKC and will become an unrestricted free agent, per Woj.

Look at this dumbass from the NY Post:

Would like to note Berman voted Ben Simmons third in his Rookie of the Year ballot and also put him on his All-Rookie team. To quote Jim Schwartz, “You do dumbass things, pretty soon, you’re going to be labeled as a dumbass.”

Summer League action begins next week. It looks like former Wizard Chris McCullough will be a part of the Sixers.

Former Sixers sideline reporter Molly Sullivan opened up about her unexpected departure from NBC Sports Philadelphia.

And we need to find Bill Simmons and burn his disgusting Boston-themed “LOVE” shirt.

Nick Foles’ book tour continued with an appearance in Souderton. He also appeared on First Things First on FS1.

He also talked to Sports Illustrated now and it seems like he’s all for supporting Carson Wentz:

He’ll make appearances on Fox 29 and WIP today.

Which players could regress and who could improve in 2018?

Guess who has the best roster, according to Pro Football Focus? The Eagles:

Biggest strength: As a part of the most dominant defensive front in football, Brandon Graham had the best year of his career in terms of sack total while continuing to cement his place as one of the most consistent edge defenders at producing pressure. For the second straight year, Graham registered an elite grade, and since 2012, he has averaged just 5.8 pass rushes per pressure generated, which is second to only Von Miller in that span.

Biggest weakness: The departure of Mychal Kendricks, who was the team’s highest-graded linebacker, leaves a question mark over the Eagles’ linebacking corps, with fifth-year player Corey Nelson set to fill the void. Nelson played only 43 snaps last season, and he ended the year with a grade of 64.4, his lowest since 2015.

By the numbers: A season-ending knee injury robbed us of the conclusion of a spectacular breakout sophomore campaign from quarterback Carson Wentz, but fans will nevertheless be excited by what they saw. Wentz showed dramatic improvement under pressure last season and finished with the league’s fourth-best passer rating on pressured throws (81.7), an incredible 48.9 points above his 2016 mark.

Birds fans are some of the best football fans in the country, according to an academic study.

With three days until the NHL Free Agency period opens, what should the Flyers do?

Development Camp begins in Voorhees today.

In the FIFA World Cup, Sweden shutout Mexico, but South Korea upset Germany 2-0. That means Sweden and Mexico will move on to the Knockout Stage in Group F, while Germany goes home. Mexico was happy:

In Group E, Brazil beat Serbia, while Switzerland and Costa Rica tied. Brazil and Switzerland move on.

Today is the final day of group play. Group H plays at 10 AM, as Japan takes on Poland while Senegal takes on Colombia. Japan and Senegal are tied at four points, while Colombia has three points. Poland has been officially eliminated.

In Group G, Panama-Tunisia and Belgium-England play at 2 PM. England and Belgium have already advanced, but will play to decide who wins the group.

In other sports news, Oregon State and Arkansas will play in Game 3 of the College World Series tonight at 6:30 PM on ESPN2. Arkansas was a fly out short of winning it all last night:

The Beavers tied the game up with an RBI single and then this happened:

Stop me if you’ve heard this: The Mavericks want DeAndre Jordan.

The Cavs made a roster move! They’re picking up Kendrick Perkins’ option for next season. That’ll certainly get LeBron back!

In the news, police bodycam video from the Trenton arts festival shooting was released.

Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy is retiring.

One of North Korea’s nuclear sites is…upgrading?