The interleague series between the Seattle Mariners and San Diego Padres hasn't provided much entertainment in recent years.
But judging by the teams' offseason acquisitions -- Seattle signed slugger Nelson Cruz while the Padres acquired Matt Kemp from the Los Angeles Dodgers -- the series that is affectionately known by Mariners and Padres fans as the Vedder Cup could be interesting in 2015.
The mythical Vedder Cup, named after Pearl Jam frontman Eddie Vedder, who spent some of his childhood in San Diego and hit it big in Seattle, is bestowed to the team that wins the regular-season series.
A blogger for the Padres blog Left Coast Bias came up with the name for the series for the teams, who are linked by a spring training facility in Peoria, Ariz., but not much else.
"Forget about the Dodgers and Giants, Duke and North Carolina, the Seahawks and 49ers," Seattle Times columnist Larry Stone wrote. "This is what a fierce rivalry is all about. These teams just don't like each other.
"Oh, heck, who are we fooling? They have no animosity whatsoever. Brandon Maurer, traded from the Mariners to San Diego in the offseason, is rooming with current Mariner James Paxton this spring. Mariners outfielder Seth Smith, acquired in a winter trade with San Diego, still has plenty of buddies on the Padres. The only emotion you'll find in large quantities is mutual respect.
"But something crazy is happening this year when it comes to the Vedder Cup: For once, both teams look like they're going to be pretty good at the same time. Those two games in Seattle on May 12-13 and two in San Diego on June 30-July 1 might actually mean something to both teams, for a change.
"Guess how many times the Padres and Mariners have both finished with a winning record in the 18 seasons they've been meeting in interleague games? That would be ... once, in 2007, when the Mariners were 88-74 and the Padres were 89-74. Neither team made the postseason, though, San Diego losing a one-game playoff with Colorado for the wild-card berth.
"The Padres are primed. The Mariners are motivated. Get ready for a rip-roarin' rivalry.
"Vedder late than never."
The Florida Panthers had two goalies suffer injuries Tuesday night, and goalie coach Robb Tallas almost took over.
Roberto Luongo left the game following the first period with an upper-body injury and Al Montoya suffered a lower-body injury early in the third period. Florida lost to the Toronto Maple Leafs 3-2.
Panthers General Manager Dale Tallon said his team was in contact with the NHL and trying to get Tallas cleared to play. While that process was ongoing, the Panthers decided to have Montoya return to the game.
Tallas was ultimately cleared, but Luongo wound up being the one who replaced Montoya. Luongo had a CT scan performed during the game, Tallon said.
Tallas, who played with the Boston Bruins and Chicago Blackhawks, played in his last NHL game was Feb. 19, 2001. He had 31 saves in a loss to the New York Rangers.
But Tuesday's game was not Tallas' first situation as the Panthers' emergency goalie. Tallas served as the emergency backup when Jacob Markstrom's equipment was late arriving to a game.
Who has started the most consecutive Opening Days for the Los Angeles Dodgers?
Don Sutton who started seven consecutive Opening Days for the Dodgers from 1972-1978.
Sports on 03/05/2015