Why the A’s could trade Marcus Semien

first_imgThe A’s had a big decision to make about Marcus Semien even before the shortstop’s monster 2019 season.In the end, will it be the same old story for A’s fans? The venerable baseball observer Peter Gammons suggested as much last week.Semien isn’t a free agent until after next season. But the MVP finalist is in line for a significant pay boost — probably into the neighborhood of $14 million.Too rich for the A’s blood? Remember, this is a small-budget franchise that shocked its fans base last …last_img read more

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Good-Bye Netbooks – No One Is Going To Miss You

first_imgbrian proffitt It looks like 2013 will mark the end of the odd little platform known as the netbook. And if anyone cares – or even notices – it’ll be something of a miracle.The Taiwanese hardware-sector rumor mill has new grist in its headlines this week: announcements from Asustek and Acer detailing the end of production for these companies’ respective netbook product lines. There are big qualifiers on this news, because of the source – DigiTimes has gotten these things wrong before.Still, this is one of those pieces of news that sounds plausible because netbooks never turned out to be the market behemoth they were initially hyped to be. We saw signs that netbooks were dying as far back as 2010 – the same year the first iPad came out. Dell pulled the plug on its netbook line back in 201,  with HP and Samsung following suit.Running The AutopsyA lot of people will point to the rise of the iPad and other tablets as the reason netbooks died, and this is one case where conventional wisdom is probably right.The idea of a lightweight, portable computing platform was very compelling towards the end of the first decade of the 21st Century, and hardware manufacturers approached this goal by trimming down laptops or beefing up smartphones.PC/laptop makers got there first, with the Intel Atom-based small laptops that were incredibly lightweight. Unfortunately, we’re not just talking the mass-times-gravity kind of weight, either. Light on memory, storage and computing power, early netbooks could barely run the operating system usually thrust on them by their makers (usually Windows XP, Windows Vista or Windows 7), let alone useful applications.That was my own experience when I picked up a netbook in late 2009. Ideally, this device was to serve as an on-the-floor writing tool when I was attending trade shows and conferences. Laptops are all well and good for this, but after half a day of lugging the things around, they can start to seem mighty heavy. A much-lighter netbook seemed like the perfect solution.The problem was, the netbook I bought had little on-board storage after Vista hogged much of the solid-state drive, and the thing was slow as molasses. I was able to alleviate the performance issues by installing Linux on it, but the local storage issue was never really solved. The cramped keyboard and minuscule screen didn’t help much, either.Netbooks Stuck In The MiddleThen along came the iPad, and all bets were off. That, and the Macbook Air my daughter saved up to buy on her own, convinced me that the netbook platform was simply not going to work for me or my family.Given every manufacturers’ departure from the platform, I’m not alone. The aforementioned Air and the Intel-based Ultrabooks seem to be filling in the niche for those users unconvinced that a tablet can be a decent productivity platform, and there seems to be little rending of garments about the loss of the netbook.It’s not quite over for netbooks yet. There still seems to be some activity around Google’s Chromebooks, which sorta-kinda fall into the netbook category. Chromebooks are heavily tied to Google services, and are targeting a different user than traditional netbooks. But if Google’s own Nexus tablet products (and any other Android-based tablets) keep doing well, I have a feeling even this relative of the short-lived netbook platform will be destined for the recycle bin, too.Image courtesy of Intel. How to Write a Welcome Email to New Employees? 7 Types of Video that will Make a Massive Impac… Tags:#hardware center_img Why You Love Online Quizzes Growing Phone Scams: 5 Tips To Avoid Related Posts last_img read more

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Video: Notre Dame Freshman Guard Rex Pflueger Is Pretty Good At Dunking

first_imgA closeup of Notre Dame's mascot during a basketball game.PITTSBURGH, PA – MARCH 19: The Notre Dame Fighting Irish mascot, the Notre Dame Leprechaun, performs in the first half against the Northeastern Huskies during the second round of the 2015 NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament at Consol Energy Center on March 19, 2015 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Justin K. Aller/Getty Images)We’ve seen several videos this off-season featuring college basketball players throwing down ridiculous dunks at their school’s practice facilities. Notre Dame freshman guard Rex Pflueger is the latest to record his aerial exploits and share them with the world. Pflueger posted this video, featuring three dunks, on Twitter today. The first one is the best, in our opinion, but all three are pretty impressive. Dunks DuLac!!! @NDmbb #dunkweek #flightbrothers pic.twitter.com/5jllt5F6rB— Rex Pflueger (@rexpflueger_1) August 30, 2015last_img read more

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Photos: Nebraska Wearing Custom Gold And Orange DLillard1 Sneakers For 3rd Annual #AveryStrong Game

first_imgAvery Strong hashtag for Nebraska.Twitter/@TMAG1CFormer Nebraska assistant coach Chris Harriman now coaches at New Mexico, but the Huskers are still supporting his son Avery’s battle with leukemia. Today, when Nebraska hosts Michigan, it will have its third annual #AveryStrong game. Students will be wearing #AveryStrong shirts, and NBA star Damian Lillard is providing the team with gold and orange DLillard1 sneakers, which represent pediatric cancer and leukemia awareness.Shout out to @HuskerHoops and what they are doing to support pediatric cancer and young Avery today. #AveryStrong pic.twitter.com/Fj1YoCB7m2— Damian Lillard (@Dame_Lillard) January 23, 2016Avery Harriman is only 8 years old, but has battled and beaten childhood leukemia 3 times. #AveryStrong— Damian Lillard (@Dame_Lillard) January 23, 2016The #miadidas #DLillard1 and tees @huskerhoops will wear today have gold for pediatric cancer and orange for leukemia. #AveryStrong— Damian Lillard (@Dame_Lillard) January 23, 2016Here is more on #AveryStrong from Nebraska:To honor the fight that Avery has gone through, the first 500 students at Saturday’s game will receive an #AveryStrong shirt provided by Husker IMG Sports Marketing, turning the Red Zone gold on Saturday. The gold shirt symbolizes pediatric cancer, while the orange is the color for leukemia, symbolizing Avery’s battle. Fans between the ages of 18 and 44 can sign up on Saturday to join the national bone marrow registry, as volunteers will be on hand to swab the cheeks of potential bone marrow donors. Any fan who signs up for the Bone Marrow Registry on Saturday will receive a free #AveryStrong T-shirt. In addition, information will be available to fans about the National Marrow Donor Program. Avery and other children battling pediatric cancer will be special guests of the Husker basketball program on Saturday and be recognized during pregame and halftime ceremonies.This is an amazing move by the program to continue to support Avery and the Harriman family, even after Chris moved on to another school.last_img read more

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Photo: Jim Harbaugh Wears Allen Iverson Jersey To ODU Satellite Camp

first_imgJim Harbaugh looks content from the sidelines.MADISON, WI – NOVEMBER 18: Head coach Jim Harbaugh of the Michigan Wolverines watches action during a game against the Wisconsin Badgers at Camp Randall Stadium on November 18, 2017 in Madison, Wisconsin. (Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images)Another day, another satellite camp for Michigan head coach Jim Harbaugh. This morning, the khaki-wearing coach was at Old Dominion University in Norfolk, Va. for a camp. Harbaugh, who wore a Hank Aaron jersey before a camp in Atlanta earlier this week, took the field wearing an Allen Iverson jersey today. Michigan coach Jim Harbaugh is wearing an Allen Iverson jersey at ODU’s football camp. pic.twitter.com/Tblj1g3uqO— Harry Minium (@Harry_MiniumVP) June 5, 2016This makes some sense because ODU is about a half an hour away from Iverson’s hometown of Hampton. It will be interesting to see which other jerseys Harbaugh breaks out on the camp circuit.last_img read more

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Energy has gone from Albertas economic engine to its backbone ATB

first_imgATB Financial’s chief economist told a Calgary audience the energy industry has gone from Alberta’s economic engine to its backbone.Todd Hirsch told the crowd of 1,500 that the city’s economy is moving forward by evolving rather than recovering from the latest economic recession.He said when a barrel of oil was $100, oil and gas was fueling wage growth and employment, but it’s different five years later.“There has been some hiring, but wages are lower in the energy sector, there is some investment coming back, but not at rates we saw in 2012, 2013,” he said. “A backbone, which is very important to an economy like it is to the human body, but it’s not the growth engine fueling every day ahead and the black hole that pulls everything into its own gravity.“A backbone is actually a healthier role I think for the energy sector to be playing because it does allow for diversity.Hirsch spoke during a presentation with the Conference Board of Canada and Calgary Economic Development regarding the provincial and city outlooks for 2018.According to the board, Calgary’s economy is increasing 4.6 per cent this year and projecting a more modest growth next year at 2.1 per cent, along with a provincial average of 2.0 per cent.“Alberta’s gone from the back of the pack the last two years, a really painful recession, to the leader, you’re now the strongest growing province this year,” senior fellow with the board Glen Hodgson said.Hodgson noted that comes with a muted commodity price recovery, but he hopes for more balance next year.“This year it’s way too much the consumer, not enough private investment,” Hodgson said, adding he agreed with Hirsch’s analogy. “Shifting and thinking about that as a foundation and then diversifying the sources of energy is probably a good metaphor.”Both agreed the biggest risks to the local and provincial economies are the NAFTA negotiations.“That could take a lot of growth, a lot of steam because it’ll rupture confidence, both for consumers and investors,” he said, adding while Calgary has an advantage because the U.S. is still consuming oil and gas products, the city is still exposed.“Alberta and Calgary would be affected by ripple effects if B.C. or Ontario are affected,” he said.Calgary Economic Development CEO Mary Moran said along with uncertainty around NAFTA and regulatory processes, the focus has to stay on technological advancements.“Not happening down the road, they’re happening today,” she said. “The reality is that we have to get comfortable with dealing with uncertainty and I think we’re really good risk managers, but we’re not necessarily good with dealing with uncertainty.“Compared to a year ago, I think we’ve made quantum leaps.”last_img read more

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Martinrea to shut Ajax automotive plant when GM ends Oshawa production

first_imgTORONTO — Martinrea International Inc. says it will be forced to close an automotive factory when General Motors winds down production at its Oshawa assembly plant next year in one of the clearest indications of the knock-on effects of the closure on suppliers.Rob Wildeboer, executive chairman of manufacturer Martinrea, says the company will have no choice but to end operations at its Ajax, Ont. plant and offer relocation to the 77 people who work there because the site is entirely dependent on GM’s Oshawa assembly line.The closure of the Oshawa plant and the nearly 3,000 jobs that will be lost have raised concerns of ripple effects through the supply chain, with Unifor estimating every job represents seven spin off jobs in the local economy.Parts manufacturers and other suppliers have, however, downplayed the overall impact of the closure thanks to diversification efforts after the global economic downturn that helped lead GM into bankruptcy.Automotive manufacturer Linamar Corp. says it expects to see minimal to no impact from the closure since most of its GM parts are exported to assembly plants in the U.S.Smaller operations have also diversified, including packager Tec Business Solutions, which says it has reduced exposure to the automotive industry while still having faith in its long-term strength.The Canadian Presslast_img read more

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Oilsands producer Cenovus shares get a lift from crude rail deals

first_imgCALGARY, A.B. – Cenovus Energy Inc. shares increased nearly seven percent after the oilsands producer said it signed three-year deals with Canada’s major rail companies to move 100,000 barrels per day of heavy crude oil by rail.The Calgary-based company’s shares gained 81.5 cents or 6.8 percent at $12.825 in late-morning trading on the Toronto Stock Exchange.Chief executive Alex Pourbaix said after markets closed on Wednesday that the deals will allow the company to go around clogged pipelines that are linked to multi-year high discounts in prices for Canadian heavy oil versus New York-traded benchmark crude. Cenovus says it has struck a deal with Canadian National Railway to move oil from Cenovus’s terminal northeast of Edmonton and with Canadian Pacific Railway through USD Partners’ terminal in Hardisty, Alta.Transportation from both is to start in the second quarter of next year and ramp up through 2019.Cenovus says it is expecting all-in costs to transport the oil from Alberta to the U.S. Gulf Coast in the mid- to high-teens in U.S. dollars per barrel rail is generally more expensive than shipping by pipeline.The National Energy Board reported that crude-by-rail exports from Canada rose above 200,000 barrels per day in June for the first time, up from about 110,000 bpd 12 months earlier.“Our rail strategy provides a means of mitigating the price impact of pipeline congestion,” said Pourbaix.“While we remain confident new pipeline capacity will be constructed, these rail agreements will help get our oil to higher-price markets.” (THE CANADIAN PRESS)last_img read more

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Opinion Coldweather Super Bowl poses big risk reward for NFL

MetLife Stadium will play host to Super Bowl XLVIII Feb. 2.Courtesy of MCTSan Diego, Houston, Miami, New Orleans. East Rutherford, New Jersey?One of these Super Bowl host cities, quite clearly, is not like the others.The National Football League’s decision to host Super Bowl XLVIII in a cold-weather city — specifically one without a suitable indoor venue — has become a frequent target for criticism during the weeks leading up to the big game. Set to kickoff on Sunday, at 6:25 p.m., this year’s Super Bowl — which pits the Denver Broncos and their league-best offense against the Seattle Seahawks’ No.1-ranked defense — has been somewhat upstaged by the weather forecast.Back in 2010, when NFL commissioner Roger Goodell announced that the first-ever outdoor, cold-weather Super Bowl would be played in New Jersey, the decision produced mixed reviews. Since that time, the sense of concern has risen as the challenges of hosting the nation’s most-watched sporting event under the harsh conditions of winter have come into focus.There is no doubt that Goodell and the NFL owners took a gamble in selecting MetLife Stadium to host the 48th version of the Super Bowl. It remains to be seen as to whether or not they will be rewarded for that risk.Theoretically, bringing the greatest spectacle in American sports to the New York metropolitan area is a recipe for an unprecedented amount of hype. In practice, however, the “crash-and-burn” potential of a “Big Apple” Super Bowl rivals that of one of MetLife Stadium’s familiar occupants — The New York Jets.According to Weather.com, February is the tri-state area’s snowiest month with an average of 9.5 inches of precipitation. At this time last year, Winter Storm Nemo buried the city under 10 inches of snow.Low and behold, when the Farmers’ Almanac was released last August, it predicted that a major winter storm would hit the Northeast around the time of Super Bowl Sunday. Last week, more than 1,300 workers could be found shoveling inside MetLife Stadium after it was blanketed with 13 inches of snow.Several media outlets have already begun discussing the chances of a Super Bowl Saturday or Monday in the event of severe weather — a scenario that league officials have conceded as a remote possibility. On Jan. 23, NJ.com reported that NFL Executive Vice President Eric Grubman said the game could be played anytime between Friday and Monday, if necessary.Fortunately, the current weather forecast for Sunday is favorable, calling for a high of 39 degrees and placing the chance of rain or snow at just 20 percent. Assuming those predictions hold true, the conditions will be manageable—just don’t expect the Red Hot Chili Peppers to sport their usual shirtless look when they join Bruno Mars on stage for the halftime show.In an interview with the New York Daily News, Goodell stood by the league’s choice of MetLife Stadium.“We made the decision that football is played in the elements and so we recognize that and we made a decision to do that. Championship games are often played in inclement weather,” Goodell said. “We had several games that were played in inclement weather, including playoff games this year. That’s football.”The commissioner does have a point. There is something quite romantic about the prospect of the Super Bowl being played on a snow-covered field at The Meadowlands. However, in the event that America’s de facto national holiday — the Super Bowl — is interfered with, the results will be anything but romantic for Goodell and the NFL. read more

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