DLD 9/7/11



Washington celebrated Strasmas last night (ESPN)

Stephen Strasburg needs an equipment truck to haul his mystique and aura to the mound, so it's hard to believe the kid has such an unassuming presence in the clubhouse. If you didn't know better, you'd think he was born to blend.

Apparently, he's so good, he's got exotic dancers at his starts.

Adam Rosales plans to head to Mexico for Winter League. (SF Chronicle)

"It's just been a crazy year, trying to come back from the foot thing," he said. "I kept hoping I'd feel good when I came back, but I haven't played the way the team needs me to play."

Rosales is in an 0-for-25 skid with Oakland, the longest hitless streak of his career. He also played for Mexicali after the 2009 season, mostly in left field. This time he believes he'll be playing all over the infield.


Josh Willingham earned the Dave Stewart Community Service award. (BANG)

Willingham and his wife, Ginger, raised more than $100,000 through silent auctions to aid relief efforts in the wake of devastation by tornadoes in the Willingham's native Alabama.

During the All-Star break, Willingham also traveled to Alabama to visit with families affected by the tornadoes and assist in cleanup efforts. During the visit, the outfielder presented personal checks to two high schools from the hardest-hit areas to repair baseball fields that were destroyed.

Willingham's wife led more than 200 volunteers in a cleanup effort of various towns in and around Florence, Ala., where the couple lives with their two children. The Willinghams are also working with the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to build nine tornado protection shelters around the north half of the state.

A heartfelt baseball 9/11 story. (Yahoo!)

Kevin Williams was 24 years old when he was killed on Sept. 11, 2001. He worked on the 104th floor of the World Trade Center's south tower as a bond salesman for investment firm Sandler O'Neill. He loved his job and was planning to marry his high school sweetheart on Dec. 1 of that year. 


The family created the Kevin Williams Memorial Foundation, which sends children who could not otherwise afford it to baseball and softball camps. The first year, the family raised enough money to send 20 children to camp. This year, says Pat Williams, "we just passed our 500th child." One child who was sponsored by the foundation is now attending college on a four-year baseball scholarship.

ESPN's NFL Power Rankings are out for Week 1. (ESPN)

22 (23)
Raiders 8-8 Was 2010 division sweep a fluke? The Raiders need to be more consistent no matter the opponent.

26 (26)
49ers 6-10 49ers could have as many as six new starters on defense.


25 (19)
Seahawks 7-9 Decision to go with QB Tarvaris Jackson as starter has confounded NFL.


32 (32)
Bengals 4-12 Coach Marvin Lewis says the 2011 Bengals are better than the 2010 Bengals (4-12). It should be a close race.
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