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|With just a handful of games remaining for the Columbus Blue Jackets Authentic Allen Robinson Jersey , coach John Tortorella believes the team is in a good place even as its late push to secure a playoff spot has gotten tougher.
With Nick Foligno out of the lineup, the Blue Jackets open a three-game swing across western Canada on Tuesday night against NHL scoring leader Connor McDavid and the Edmonton Oilers.
Columbus (42-29-5) is in third place in the Metropolitan Division, three points behind the Pittsburgh Penguins. The Blue Jackets are also tied in points with the Philadelphia Flyers for the first wild card, and Columbus has a three-point edge on the New Jersey Devils for the second wild card.
“We have six left and we’ve got some nicks along the way here … you just go play. We don’t talk about it. We just do it. That’s part of our job,” Tortorella said Monday.
The Blue Jackets surged into contention thanks to 10-game winning streak that ended with a 2-1 loss to St. Louis Blues on Saturday. Foligno, who has collected 19 points (eight goals, 11 assists) in the last 30 games, suffered a lower-body injury and will be sidelined from two to four weeks.
But for Tortorella, it’s business as usual.
“I just don’t want us to lose our swagger,” he said. “I think we’re in a good spot. I think the guys are feeling good about themselves. You get banged up; you just go about your business. Nick has been very good for us, so we have to fill that hole.”
Brandon Dubinsky (15 points in 56 games) is expected to fill in for Foligno.
Columbus also still has Artemi Panarin, who leads the club in scoring (25 goals Christopher Tanev Jersey , 44 assists), and needs one point to reach 70 for the third straight season. The Russian winger has six goals and three assists in a four-game points streak on the road.
The Blue Jackets have won four straight away from home and seek their third victory in four games in Edmonton. Columbus is also looking for a split of the season series after a 7-2 loss on Dec. 12 in Ohio’s capital city.
To no one’s surprise, McDavid was the driving force in that rout, collecting a goal and three assists.
The Oilers captain solidified his hold as the league’s top scorer after collecting a goal and two assists in Sunday’s 5-4 overtime loss to the Anaheim Ducks that eliminated Edmonton (34-36-6) from postseason consideration.
With six games to play, McDavid has 99 points — two from a career high, and three in front of Nikita Kucherov of the Tampa Bay Lightning.
McDavid, who is looking to be the first player to win consecutive Art Ross trophies since Jaromir Jagr won four straight from 1998 to 2001 with the Pittsburgh Penguins, was named the league’s First Star of the Week after collecting five goals and five assists in four games last week.
The biggest difference in No. 97 this season compared with last season?
“I see him around the net a bit more. He wanted to do that this year. His sense of timing, arriving on rebounds, having the ability to tap things in,” Oilers coach Todd McLellan said recently.
Most likely, McDavid will try to pad his total against Blue Jackets goaltender Sergei Bobrovsky. Since losing three straight starts in early February Clay Matthews Jersey , the two-time Vezina Trophy winner is 12-4-1 with a 2.01 goals-against average and one shutout. Bobrovsky would also be looking for his fourth straight road win during that span.
Backup Joonas Korpisalo has won three straight starts, allowing a total of nine goals. He is 2-5-0 with a 4.15 GAA on the road in 2017-18.
Edmonton’s Cam Talbot needs one win to reach 30 for the second straight season. He has surrendered 14 goals in his last five games, posting a 4-0-1 record.
Al Montoya (2-2-2, 3.24 GAA with the Oilers) missed Sunday’s game with an undisclosed injury. If Montoya can’t go, Laurent Brossoit (3-7-1, 3.22 GAA) would back up Talbot.
Three years after going undrafted out of Drury College, Trevor Richards has earned his first major league win.
Richards pitched six effective innings to lead the Miami Marlins to a 3-1 victory over the San Francisco Giants on Tuesday night.
”It’s great, it’s good to get that one out of the way,” Richards said. ”It’s been too long so it’s good to get it done.”
Richards (1-3) allowed two hits in his seventh major league start. The 25-year-old right-hander struck out two and walked three.
”He’s been a good story, he’s thrown the ball well,” Marlins manager Don Mattingly said. ”Obviously Pitcher of the Year last year in the minor leagues, really good reports on his makeup and how he works Claude Giroux Jersey , competes, and pays attention so it’s good to see guys like that have success.”
Richards walked the first two batters of the game before settling in.
”I got a little too excited for the game, a little amped up and lost mechanics,” Richards said. ”I was able to settle down and keep going.”
Brandon Crawford’s groundout in the first inning drove in the only run for the Giants, who had just three hits.
”Three hits, that’s not going to work,” manager Bruce Bochy said. ”We had a hard time getting guys on base and just getting something going. That’s the ballgame.”
Kyle Barraclough pitched a perfect ninth for his fourth save in six chances. He has not allowed a run over his last 14 games and a career-best 13 2/3 innings.
JT Riddle had a two-run double for Miami, and Starlin Castro had two hits and knocked in a run.
”Just enough,” Mattingly said.
San Francisco right-hander Chris Stratton (7-4) worked out of a bases-loaded jam in the second inning, but ran into trouble in the third when he again loaded the bases. This time, Castro singled in Derek Dietrich and Riddle followed with a two-run double to right field.
”I let it get away from me there,” Stratton said. ”I thought I made some really good pitches. Give them credit.”
Stratton then retired his final 13 batters. He allowed four hits in seven innings.
RIDDLE’S BIG HIT
Riddle’s two-run double gave him his first multi-RBI game of the season and eighth of his career.
”(Stratton) left me a fastball over the middle of the plate after I had swung through two http://www.dallascowboysteamonline.com/anthony-brown-jersey ,” Riddle said. ”I was a little late on those so I was thinking he might come back with another one, he did, left it over the middle, and I put a pretty good swing on it.”
Giants: 1B Brandon Belt (appendix) is expected to join the team in Los Angeles later this week after making progress from emergency surgery on June 2. ”He soft-tossed in Arizona, threw, did quite a bit of baseball activities,” Bochy said. ”Tomorrow he’ll take regular batting practice so that’s the big step. If he feels fine doing that, then we’re getting close on him.”
Giants: LHP Andrew Suarez (2-4, 5.06 ERA) will start the third game of the series on Wednesday in his hometown for the first time in front of a number of family members and friends.
Marlins: LHP Caleb Smith (5-6, 3.70) is 5-4 with a 2.70 ERA over his last nine starts.
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