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Rivals.com – Arch Madness: Official visits coming into focus ahead of busy summer

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Blue Jays’ bats stay quiet, Votto hits home run as Reds avoid series sweep

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TORONTO — Canadian Joey Votto smashed a towering eighth-inning home run off the right-field foul pole to give the Cincinnati Reds a 3-2 win over the Toronto Blue Jays on Sunday.

With the game tied at 2-2, the 38-year-old Votto, a Toronto native, hit a one-out, 2-0 curveball down the line off Blue Jays right-handed reliever Yimi Garcia (0-3).

The blast was Votto’s first of the year. The six-time all-star first baseman was activated from the COVID-19 injury list before the series opener Friday.

He finished the series 3-for-11 with a first-inning walk in the finale. Votto has made 12 career visits to Toronto and has 11 hits in 44 plate appearances, including four homers.

Toronto (22-19) aimed for its first series sweep of the season before 42,323 at Rogers Centre against the last-place Reds (12-28).

Reds closer Art Warren enjoyed a 1-2-3 ninth inning for his second save. Cincinnati reliever Alexis Diaz (2-0) picked up the win for his two innings of work.

Toronto starter Yusei Kikuchi struggled in the first. He faced eight batters and threw 37 pitches as Cincinnati grabbed a 2-0 lead.

Kikuchi walked three of the first four batters he faced to load the bases. Aristides Aquino then smacked a two-out, ground-rule double down the left-field line.

Kikuchi settled down to retire 10 in a row until Reds catcher Aramis Garcia led off the fifth with a single to left field.

The Blue Jays starter lasted 4 1/3 innings, struck out seven, walked three and allowed two hits.

Toronto pulled to within 2-1 in the second because of a leadoff double from Santiago Espinal and a run-scoring single to right field from Matt Chapman.

The Blue Jays tied the game in the third. A pitch hit George Springer on his left elbow. He moved to second on a wild pitch and took third base on Vladimir Guerrero’s long fly ball to centre.

Springer scored on Bo Bichette’s ground ball to Cincinnati shortstop Kyle Farmer.

Springer made a fine running catch in the right-centre gap on a shot hit by Farmer in the sixth.

Cincinnati starter Graham Ashcraft made his major-league debut, lasting 4 1/3 innings. He yielded two runs on four hits, walked two, struck out three, and delivered a wild pitch and hit Springer.

SANTIAGO’S STREAK — Espinal’s second-inning double extended his hit streak to 15 games, the longest active streak in the MLB.

In his impressive run, the Blue Jays’ second baseman has gone 29-for-52 (.365).

NEXT UP — The Blue Jays begin a two-game set in St. Louis against the Cardinals (23-18) on Monday, the first of six straight on the road. Toronto right-hander Jose Berrios (3-2) will face fellow right-hander Miles Mikolas (3-2) in the series opener. Berrios stopped a two-game personal losing streak in his last outing with a 3-0 shutout victory against the Seattle Mariners last Tuesday.

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“Liverpool played an incredible season” – Gundogan delivers classy message as matchwinning brace clinches Premier League title for Manchester City

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"Liverpool played an incredible season" – Gundogan delivers classy message as matchwinning brace clinches Premier League title for Manchester City

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Rivals.com – Standouts from across Southeast impress at Rivals Camp Series in Atlanta

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ATLANTA – The eighth and final stop of the Rivals Camp Series was here in Atlanta this weekend at Lakewood Stadium and a bunch of top regional prospects showed out. Here is a breakdown of the positional MVPs and other top performers from the day.

QUARTERBACK MVP:

Kamari McClellan

The quarterback position was loaded with talent in Atlanta on Sunday. In a very tight race among top regional gunslingers, McClellan took home top honors. McClellan started the camp impressing with his footwork and release during drills and kept that going during the one-on-ones lacing accurate pass after accurate pass. The 2024 Alabama prospect is already regarded as one of the best in his class with a four-star ranking with offers from Oregon, Missouri, Florida State and Auburn.

*****

RUNNING BACK MVP: Jayden Scott

Scott worked over defenders all day long. The three-star was quick and with next level speed shaking defenders during the open field tackle drills. He added an extra dimension to his game, running routes and schooling linebackers and defensive backs. ACC programs are loving Scott with offers from Miami, Duke, Wake Forest and Louisville among his 14 offers.

*****  

WIDE RECEIVER/TIGHT END MVP: Anthony Miller

The fact that a tight end earned MVP honors speaks volumes for the kind of day Miller turned in at the camp. His routes were tight and his hands were strong, even with defensive backs and linebackers hanging on him all day securing the pass for his quarterbacks. The 2023 talent continues to see his stock rise this offseason. Showcasing his skills at camps and during spring practices, Miller is nearing the 20-offer mark with Florida, Pitt, Louisville and Georgia Tech targeting him.

*****  

OFFENSIVE LINE MVP: Madden Sanker

Madden was his usual self on Sunday but it was really good to see how technically proficient he’s become. Measuring in at 6-fioot-4, 309-pounds, Sanker did a great job using his length to his advantage and making sure defensive linemen stayed in front of him. He doesn’t look like it but he has a very strong base and showed off his toughness when defensive linemen tried to push him around. Sanker isn’t afraid to show his enthusiasm either. There were multiple occasions when Sanker made sure he got the last shove in before the whistle. Michigan State, Arkansas, Louisville and Miami are getting him on campus for official visits next month.

*****  

DEFENSIVE LINE MVP: Keldric Faulk

There were a lot of very good defensive linemen in attendance today but Faulk was just a cut above the rest. Measuring in at 6-foot-6.5, 250-pounds with a 6-foot-10 wingspan, Faulk has ideal size and length for an edge player and he’s very skilled when it comes to his hand techniques and understanding of leverage. Combined with his quickness, Faulk was able to show off his full repertoire during 1-on-1s. He got into the backfield with ease and made sure offensive linemen weren’t able to slow him down. Faulk also showed how he’s able to keep his balance while bending around the outside. Clemson, Auburn, Florida, and Florida State are in line for official visits next month.

*****  

LINEBACKER MVP: Sammy Brown

Brown was all over the field for the linebackers today. The highly-ranked 2024 prospect had a lot of success during the pass rushing drills and showed he has the skills to fight off blockers when trying to get to the quarterback. In coverage, Brown did a great job of staying patient but turned on the jets to keep the running backs and tight ends within arms reach. There are a lot of teams in play for Brown but keep an eye on Georgia, Tennessee, Clemson and Oklahoma as the recruiting process unfolds.

*****  

DEFENSIVE BACK MVP: Avieon Terrell

Terrell has lofty standards and expectations are high thanks to his brother, former five-star AJ Terrell. He’s listed as a safety but he was excellent in man coverage on Sunday. Terrell is very fast and showed excellent footwork, which helped him keep receivers locked down. He made a number of plays on the ball while it was in the air but, more often than not, his coverage was so tight that it forced quarterbacks into bad throws. Clemson is the major player for Terrell but Michigan State, Kentucky, Texas A&M and Auburn round out his top five.

*****  

MORE ALL-CAMP SELECTIONS

The positional MVP awards can only go to one person but there were still many other top performers that should be recognized: three-star Arkansas quarterback commit Malachi Singleton, Florida State 2024 Rivals250 running back commit Kameron Davis, three-star receiver Sean Williams, Rivals250 Auburn offensive line commit Bradyn Joiner, 2024 Rivals250 defensive end Justin Greene, linebacker Olan Robinson and defensive back Tevis Metcalf.

*****  

RIVALS UNDERCLASSMEN CHALLENGE INVITES

This summer the Rivals Underclassmen Challenge will be held in Atlanta and these prospects were invited from the Atlanta regional stop:

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