Twins fall, allowing Indians to close gap
UNDATED (AP) _ The AL Central race is a little tighter following Minnesota’s loss to Washington and Cleveland’s victory over the Los Angeles Angels.
The Nationals won for just the third time in their last nine games as Ryan Zimmerman belted a two-run homer and drove in three to lead a 6-2 win at Minnesota. Zimmerman’s blast off losing pitcher Martín (mahr-TEEN’) Pérez gave the Nats a 5-0 lead in the third inning.
Stephen Strasburg gave up a two-run homer to Jorge Polanco in the third, but he allowed only four hits and two walks with seven strikeouts over six innings to improve to 17-6 for the NL wild-card leaders.
The Indians are within four games of Minnesota following Cleveland’s fourth straight win, 4-3 over the Angels. Carlos Carrasco got his first victory in five appearances since returning from his battle with leukemia, tossing 1 2/3 shutout innings. Carlos Santana and Francisco Lindor (lihn-DOHR’) homered while the Indians were building a 4-0 lead.
Elsewhere on major league diamonds:
_ Jesús Luzardo looked sharp in his major league debut as the Athletics won for the fourth time in five games, 5-3 at Houston. Luzardo allowed one hit over three innings and retired his final seven hitters after winning pitcher Brett Anderson gave up two runs over five innings. Marcus Semien hit his career-high 28th home run and Sean Murphy went deep in a four-run sixth that allowed the A’s to stay a half-game ahead of Cleveland for the second AL wild card.
_ Oakland is within a half-game of Tampa Bay for the first AL wild card after Rougned Odor (ROOG’-nehd oh-DOHR’) crushed a go-ahead, three-run homer in the seventh inning to send the Rangers past the Rays, 10-9. Danny Santana supplied a two-run single while the Rangers scored seven times in the first. Ji-Man Choi drove in four runs with a pair of homers, but the Rays lost for just the second time in 13 games.
_ Tyler Flowers slammed a three-run homer and Dallas Keuchel (KY’-kul) struck out eight in six innings as the Braves topped the Phillies, 3-1. Keuchel gave up one run and three hits to win his fifth straight start and help the NL East leaders slash their magic number to eight. Jean Segura’s throwing error at shortstop led to three unearned runs in the fourth inning.
_ Ian Desmond’s sixth-inning home run broke a 1-1 deadlock in the Rockies’ second straight, 2-1 win over the Cardinals. Tony Wolters tied it with an RBI double and Antonio Senzatela held St. Louis to a run and four hits over six innings, including Paul Goldschmidt’s RBI double in the third. The Redbirds lead the NL Central by four games over the Cubs and Milwaukee.
_ Mike Moustakas (moos-TAH’-kahs) launched a two-run homer in the ninth inning to send the Brewers past the Marlins, 7-5. Moustakas also hit a three-run shot in the third and finished with five RBIs as Milwaukee won its sixth in a row. Trent Grisham also went deep for the Brewers, who moved into a tie with Chicago for the second NL wild card.
_ The Cubs dropped a 4-0 decision at San Diego as Chris Paddock scattered three hits while fanning seven over six innings. Manuel Margot (mahn-WEHL’ mahr-GOH’) broke a scoreless tie with a solo blast in the fifth inning. Wil Myers added insurance with a two-run single in the seventh to secure the Padres’ second straight win over Chicago.
_ Jeff McNeil was 3-for-4 with a pair of homers, three RBIs and three runs scored as the Mets downed the Diamondbacks for the third straight night, 9-0. Todd Frazier also homered twice and Brandon Nimmo delivered a solo shot that capped New York’s five-run first inning. Steve Matz tossed six innings of four-hit ball for the Mets, who are two games off an NL wild-card slot and a half-game ahead of Arizona.
_ The big league single-season record for total homers was broken when Orioles infielder Jonathan Villar (vee-AHR’) clubbed a three-run shot in a 7-3 win over the Dodgers. It was the 6,106th home run hit in the majors this year, topping the old mark set in 2017. John Means limited the NL West champions to two runs and four hits over 6 1/3 innings, one day after Los Angeles wrapped up their seventh consecutive division title.
_ Toronto handed Boston its fifth straight loss as Teoscar (tay-AHS’-kur) Hernández and Rowdy Tellez (teh-LEHZ’) homered in the Blue Jays’ 8-0 rout. Trent Thornton got the victory with five innings work and combined with three others on a two-hitter. Vladimir Guerrero (guh-REHR’-oh) Jr. had three RBIs and Cavan Biggio was 2-for-3 with two runs scored in the Jays’ second straight win since a seven-game skid.
_ Rookie Kyle Lewis broke up a no-hitter bid with a home run for the second consecutive game to jumpstart the Mariners’ comeback in a 5-3 win against the Reds. Lewis sent Sonny Gray’s 105th pitch of the game into right field for a go-ahead, three-run homer in the seventh, his second major league hit.
_ Felipe Vázquez earned his 27th save in the Pirates’ 6-3 win at San Diego, two days after fighting teammate Kyle Crick in the clubhouse. Colin Moran and Adam Frazier each had two hits and an RBI for Pittsburgh. Jose Osuna (oh-SOO’-nah) was 2-for-4 with three runs scored in the victory.
_ Jorge Soler (HOHR’-hay soh-LEHR’) smacked a pair of two-run homers while tying a career high with four hits in the Royals’ 8-6 verdict over the White Sox. Soler has 43 homers this season, two behind AL Mike Trout of the Angels. Adalberto Mondesi (ad-ul-BEHR’-toh MAHN’-deh-see), Bubba Starling and Ryan O’Hearn also connected as Kansas City beat Chicago for the fifth time in six games.
_ The Tigers and Yankees were rained out in Detroit. The game has been rescheduled as part of a Thursday afternoon doubleheader, when CC Sabathia (suh-BATH’-ee-uh) will make his return to the mound for the Yankees. The 39-year-old Sabathia hasn’t pitched since Aug. 30 due to a troublesome right knee.
Brown practices with Pats
UNDATED (AP) _ Wide receiver Antonio Brown went through his first practice with the New England Patriots yesterday.
Brown wore a No. 1 jersey and a visor with his helmet while going through warmup drills with teammates during the small portion of practice that was open to the media. He has worn No. 84 throughout his previous nine NFL seasons, but that number is currently being worn by Patriots tight end Ben Watson.
Wednesday’s workout was held one day after Brown’s former trainer filed a civil lawsuit in Florida accusing him of sexually assaulting her on three occasions. Britney Taylor filed the suit and says she will cooperate with the NFL and any other agencies.
Patriots coach Bill Belichick (BEHL’-ih-chik) declined to comment on additional questions about Brown other than to say the team takes the allegations very seriously. Belichick also sidestepped questions about Brown’s status for Sunday’s game in Miami.
Brown has denied all allegations through his attorney.
Elsewhere in the NFL:
_ Broncos inside linebacker Todd Davis practiced Wednesday for the first time since tearing his left calf muscle on the first day of training camp. The team’s leading tackler last season says he hopes to play against the Bears on Sunday.
_ Bengals receiver A.J. Green has started running for the first time since injuring his ankle during the opening practice of training camp, an indication he’s healing quickly from surgery. Green was out of his protective boot for the first time since the injury.
_ Jets wide receiver Quincy Enunwa (eh-NOON’-wah) will be sidelined the rest of the season after suffering a neck injury for the second time in three seasons. Enunwa was injured during the first half of New York’s loss to Buffalo on Sunday. Coach Adam Gase says Enunwa is still undergoing tests.
_ Rookie defensive end Nick Bosa (BOH’-sah) was not practicing as the 49ers began three days of workouts at Youngstown State. The No. 2 overall pick from Ohio State missed the entire preseason with a high ankle sprain but played 39 total snaps and had a sack Sunday. 49ers coach Kyle Shanahan will update Bosa’s status following the conclusion of the outdoor practice.
_ Chargers tight end Hunter Henry will be placed on injured reserve because of a knee injury. Henry fractured the upper part of his left tibia during the second half of Sunday’s overtime win over the Indianapolis Colts. He managed to return to the game and finished with four receptions for 60 yards, including a 17-yard catch in overtime.
_ Former Steelers guard Sam Davis has died at age 75. Davis played 168 games with the Steelers from 1967-79 and started each of their four Super Bowl victories in the 1970. Davis was found dead Tuesday at New Life Personal Care in McKeesport southeast of Pittsburgh, where he was suffering from dementia and was legally blind.
_ Raiders rookie safety Johnathan Abram will be placed on injured reserve after injuring his shoulder in the season opener. Abram injured himself in the first half against the Denver Broncos. He finished the game but will need to undergo surgery and will miss the rest of the season.
NCAA Board wants Cal Gov. to nix college bill
INDIANAPOLIS (AP) _ The NCAA Board of Governors wants California Gov. Gavin Newsom to reject a new attempt to pay college athletes.
State lawmakers have sent the governor a bill to allow athletes at California colleges to hire agents and sign endorsement deals. The legislation is known as the Fair Pay to Play Act and would allow college athletes to be paid for the use of their names, likenesses and images. It would stop universities and the NCAA from banning athletes that take the money.
However, the NCAA board warned that California schools may be declared ineligible for NCAA competition if the bill becomes law because they would have an unfair recruiting advantage.
Newsom has not said whether he will sign the bill.
Semenya to finally get her gold medal from 2011 worlds
JOHANNESBURG (AP) — Caster Semenya is finally getting her gold medal from the 2011 world championships after Russian runner Maria Savinova was stripped of the title for doping.
South Africa’s track federation says it will receive the medal from the IAAF on Semenya’s behalf at the world championships in Doha, Qatar, this month. Semenya won’t be present for any ceremony in Doha after she was barred from defending her latest 800-meter world title because she has refused to follow new IAAF rules that require her to medically reduce her natural testosterone level to be allowed to compete.
Her second legal appeal against the rules is still being considered by the Swiss supreme court.
Athletics South Africa says it will decide on an appropriate event to hand the medal to Semenya in South Africa.
HORSE RACING-JUSTIFY-DRUG TEST
NYT says Justify failed drug test before Triple Crown run
NEW YORK (AP) _ The New York Times says Justify won the 2018 Triple Crown after a failed postrace drug test at a California track that could have kept the horse out of the Kentucky Derby.
The newspaper reported Wednesday that the Bob Baffert-trained colt tested positive for the drug scopolamine after winning the Santa Anita Derby, one of the final prep races for the Kentucky Derby.
The Times said instead of a speedy disqualification, the California Horse Racing Board took more than a month to confirm the results.
GOLF-PLAYER OF THE YEAR
McIlroy tops Koepka for PGA Tour player of the year
PONTE VEDRA BEACH, Fla. (AP) _ Rory McIlroy (MAK’-ihl-roy) has been voted PGA Tour player of the year over Brooks Koepka (KEHP’-kuh) after posting the most top-10 finishes and winning the FedEx Cup.
It’s the third time McIlroy has won the Jack Nicklaus Award, and the first without having won a major.
McIlroy had three victories among his tour-best 14 finishes in the top 10, including The Players Championship. He also won the Canadian Open and the Tour Championship, giving him the FedEx Cup for the second time.
Bruins extend Cassidy’s deal
UNDATED (AP) _ The Boston Bruins have signed coach Bruce Cassidy to a multiyear contract extension, rewarding him for the team’s trip to the Stanley Cup Final in just his second full season on the bench.
Cassidy is 117-74 as the Bruins’ coach, leading Boston to back-to-back 100-point seasons. The Bruins reached Game 7 of the Stanley Cup Final in June, losing to the St. Louis Blues 4-1.
In other NHL news:
_ The Wild have re-signed left wing Kevin Fiala (fee-AH’-lah) to a two-year, $6 million contract, two days before the team holds its first preseason practice. Fiala split last season with the Wild and Nashville Predators, scoring 13 goals and 39 points in 83 games.