Update on the latest sports

MLB-BRAVES-FREEMAN TESTS POSITIVE

Freeman, Smith among four Braves testing positive

ATLANTA (AP) — Atlanta Braves four-time All-Star Freddie Freeman, premier reliever Will Smith and two teammates have tested positive for the coronavirus.

Manager Brian Snitker says the four players, including right-hander Touki Toussaint and infielder Pete Kozma, agreed to have the team disclose their positive tests.

Snitker says Freeman had a negative intake test before having a positive test on Friday. Snitker said Freeman has a fever and “is not feeling great.” He says “it will be a while” before Freeman can return to the team.

The Braves signed Smith, the former Giants reliever, to a three-year, $39 million deal in the offseason.

VIRUS OUTBREAK-TENNIS-TIAFOE

Frances Tiafoe has coronavirus, exits Atlanta tennis event

ATLANTA (AP) — Frances Tiafoe has tested positive for the coronavirus and withdrawn from the All-American Team Cup tennis tournament. He was scheduled to face Tennys Sandgren on Saturday in the weekend tournament in Atlanta involving eight top American men’s players.

The event is allowing a limited number of fans and not requiring masks, though will provide them if requested.

Tiafoe defeated Sam Querrey on Friday, but was showing symptoms after the match and a test was positive. He says he had tested negative for the virus as recently as a week ago.

NASCAR-BRICKYARD

Johnson missing Brickyard 400 after testing positive

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — NASCAR’s extravagant weekend at Indianapolis Motor Speedway has been rocked by its first driver testing positive for the coronavirus.

Seven-time NASCAR champion Jimmie Johnson will miss what was supposed to be his final Brickyard 400 as he quarantines following the Friday test result. He was asymptomatic but wife Chani had tested positive, so Johnson had himself checked.

Johnson on Sunday had hoped to tie Jeff Gordon and Michael Schumacher as the only drivers with five victories at Indianapolis. Instead, Justin Allgaier will drive the Hendrick Motorsports No. 48 Chevrolet.

NBA

NBA announces schedule for Florida scrimmages

UNDATED (AP) — The NBA announced the schedule Saturday for scrimmages at the Disney complex in Florida, with 33 games set for between July 22 and July 28.

Each of the 22 teams that will be part of the season restart has been scheduled for three games.

All three arenas at the ESPN Wide World of Sports complex that will be used for the restart will also play host to the scrimmages.

There will be between three and six games per day during that six-day span. The season will officially resume with the start of seeding games on July 30.

Teams begin arriving at Disney for a brief quarantine followed by the start of their training camps on Tuesday.

SOCCER-FC DALLAS

MLS tournament match postponed by Dallas positives

DALLAS (AP) — The MLS Is Back tournament match between FC Dallas and the Vancouver Whitecaps has been postponed after six FC Dallas players tested positive for COVID-19.

The group stage match was scheduled to take place Thursday. MLS officials announced the postponement Saturday and said a new time and date would come later.

FC Dallas confirmed Wednesday that players had tested positive upon their arrival in Florida for the month-long tournament. The entire FC Dallas delegation is quarantining in their rooms at the walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Resort.

Vancouver’s team is scheduled to arrive in Orlando on Monday.

MLS said the postponement would allow both teams to have additional training days in Orlando before opening tournament play.

FC Dallas will now play its first tournament match July 15 against the Seattle Sounders.

INDYCAR-DIVERSITY PROGRAM

IndyCar donates $1 million to establish diversity program

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — IndyCar and Indianapolis Motor Speedway are making an active effort to increase diversity throughout the industry with a $1 million donation to a new “Race for Equality & Change” initiative. The initiative will support both internal and external programs.

IndyCar does not have any Black drivers. Bubba Wallace is the only full-time black driver in NASCAR’s top Cup Series.

The initiative announced before Saturday’s race at Indianapolis Motor Speedway is aimed at both developing diversity within the sanctioning body and at the speedway, as well at the grassroots racing levels.

MLB-INDIANS NAME

Indians reviewing possible name change

CLEVELAND (AP) — They’ve been known as the Cleveland Indians since 1915. Those days could be over.

Amid new pressure sparked by a national movement to correct racial wrongdoings, the Indians said Friday night they will review their long-debated nickname which has been in place for 105 years.

The move mirrors the one made by the NFL’s Washington Redskins, who are embarking on a “thorough review” of their name. The Redskins’ decision came in the wake of FedEx, which paid $205 million for naming rights to the team’s stadium, and other corporate partners calling for the team to change its nickname.

There have been previous efforts to get the Indians to rename themselves. But following the death of George Floyd in Minnesota and other examples of police brutality against Black people in the U.S., there has been a major move nationwide to eradicate racially insensitive material.

RACIAL INJUSTICE-KANSAS STATE

Kansas State players call off threatened boycott

MANHATTAN, Kansas (AP) — Kansas State football players have called off a threatened boycott in response to an insensitive tweet by a student about the death of George Floyd.

The decision was announced on social media by several players. It follows moves by the school to address diversity concerns.

The players say they they will track the school’s efforts and re-evaluate their options if needed.

F1-AUSTRIAN GRAND PRIX

Bottas takes pole position for season-opening Austrian GP

SPIELBERG, Austria (AP) — Valtteri Bottas has upstaged Mercedes teammate Lewis Hamilton by taking pole position for Formula One’s season-opening Austrian Grand Prix.

The Finnish driver edged out the world champion by .012 seconds at the Red Bull Ring in Spielberg. Red Bull driver Max Verstappen was back in third place and Lando Norris gave McLaren a boost by finishing fourth. Verstappen has won the past two years in Austria. Hamilton was chasing a record-extending 89th career pole.

Ferrari struggled with Charles Leclerc nearly one second behind in seventh and Sebastian Vettel a miserable 11th.

SOCCER-JAPAN

Japan’s professional soccer league restarts

TOKYO (AP) — — Japan’s professional soccer league restarted on Saturday after a four-month break caused by the coronavirus pandemic.

All 18 top-flight teams were in action, and the nine games were played without fans. Japan’s popular pro baseball league restarted last month, also without fans.

The first division of the J-League suspended play in February after only one round of matches had been played.

It is expected to gradually start allowing fans to enter later this month although that could be slowed with Tokyo reporting a steady increase in COVID-19 cases.

Japan has reported just under 1,000 deaths from the virus, in a population of 126 million. This compares to almost 130,000 in the United States with a population of 330 million.

HORSE RACING-ENGLISH DERBY

Pacesetter Serpentine goes wire-to-wire

EPSOM, England (AP) — The first English Derby to take place without spectators has taken a surreal turn as 25-1 shot Serpentine went out as the pacemaker and was never caught for a stunning six-length victory at an empty Epsom Downs.

The nature of Serpentine’s wire-to-wire victory added to the bizarre feel of the 241st running of the classic. The course was fenced off and there were only a few hundred people on site at a prestigious event that usually attracts as many as 100,000 race-goers.

Irish trainer Aidan O’Brien claimed a record eighth win in the race.It marked another triumphant day for O’Brien, who saddled the winner of the Oaks hours earlier. Race favorite Love was his eighth winner of the classic for fillies.

Categories: National Sports

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