Update on the latest sports


Báez, Chirinos homer, Davies wins as Cubs pound D-backs 8-3

UNDATED (AP) — Javier Báez homered, Robinson Chirinos went deep twice, Zach Davies earned his first win since a combined no-hitter last month and the Chicago Cubs beat the Arizona Diamondbacks 8-3.

Báez gave the Cubs a 3-0 lead in the first inning with his long three-run homer. The Cubs added three more in the third, capped by Nico Hoerner’s two-run single. Chirinos made it 7-0 leading off the fourth against Zac Gallen. He also homered to start the sixth against Matt Peacock after Arizona scored two in the top half. Chicago won for just the sixth time in 23 games since Davies and three relievers no-hit the Dodgers in Los Angeles on June 24.


Guardians will be new name of Cleveland Indians

UNDATED (AP) — Cleveland’s Major League Baseball team has a new name. The team that’s been known as the Indians since 1915 will now be called the Guardians, effective at the end of the 2021 season.

The ballclub announced the name change Friday with a video on Twitter narrated by actor Tom Hanks. The organization spent most of the past year whittling down a list of potential names that numbered 1,200 just over a month ago. But the process quickly accelerated and the club landed on Guardians.Owner Paul Dolan said the new name mirrors the city and its people. He is expected to provide more details on the choice and background on the change at a news conference at Progressive Field before the Indians host the Tampa Bay Rays Friday night.

In other MLB news:

—Los Angeles Dodgers pitcher Trevor Bauer appeared in court to fight the extension of a protective order sought by a woman who says he sexually assaulted her. Attorneys for Bauer and the woman revealed Friday that they intend to call several witnesses, including Bauer, in a hearing that is expected to last three days. A judge delayed the start of the hearing until Aug. 2. The woman alleges Bauer choked her to the point where she lost consciousness and punched her during two sexual encounters earlier this year. Bauer’s agents say the encounters were entirely consensual.

—Washington Nationals infielder Starlin Castro’s administrative leave was extended an additional seven days by Major League Baseball through July 29 under its domestic violence, sexual assault and child abuse policy. The leave began July 16 under the policy adopted by MLB and the players’ association in 2015 and can be the initial step leading to a longer suspension. Castro was placed on the restricted list June 16 due to what manager Dave Martinez at the time said were “family matters.”

—Stephen Strasburg felt some discomfort in his neck after a recent bullpen session and Washington manager Dave Martinez says the team is trying to figure out what to do next. Strasburg has made only five starts this season because of neck and shoulder issues. The right-hander turned 33 on Tuesday and hasn’t pitched since June 1. Martinez says the Nationals “backed him down” in light of his recent discomfort. Martinez says Strasburg throws long toss and feels OK, but when he throws a bullpen, he has some irritation.

— The pitching-thin New York Mets have acquired left-hander Rich Hill from the Tampa Bay Rays, according to a person familiar with the trade. The 41-year-old Hill is 6-4 with a 3.89 ERA in 19 starts for the contending Rays. He has pitched just 95 1/3 innings this year under limits imposed under the Rays’ pitching strategy. This will be his 11th big league team in a 17-season career.

—Yankees pitchers Nestor Cortes and Jonathan Loaisiga have been reinstated from the COVID-19 injured list. They were the first of six New York players to go on the list before the start of the second half of the season. To make room on the roster, right-hander Darren O’Day was transferred to the 60-day IL and right-hander Nick Nelson was optioned to Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre.


Number of NFL players in vaccination process up to 80%

UNDATED (AP) — The number of NFL players who are in the COVID-19 vaccination process has reached 80%, with nine teams having 90% or more of their players in that category.

Dr. Allen Sills, the league’s medical director, said Friday that nearly all team employees who deal directly with players have been vaccinated. Five teams have less than 70% of players who have either received one vaccination shot or both. He is optimistic the number of vaccinated players will continue to rise as training camps open.

In other NFL news:

—Patrick Mahomes and several of his Kansas City Chiefs teammates reported for training camp with 90% of the team’s roster having received the COVID-19 vaccine. The Chiefs are among six NFL teams that are over 90% vaccinated. The Chiefs are holding training camp on the campus of Missouri Western State University in St. Joseph. Fans will notice new procedures when attending practices this summer. Players will not be signing autographs and other measures are being taken to increase health safety for players and other club employees..

— Cornerback Cre’von LeBlanc has signed a one-year contract with the Miami Dolphins. LeBlanc, a five-year veteran with 16 career starts, played mostly as a reserve the past two seasons for the Philadelphia Eagles. He has also played for Detroit and Chicago. Linebacker Shaquem Griffin also signed a one-year deal. He excelled on special teams the past three seasons for Seattle. Griffin, who lost his left hand as a child, became an inspiration for many when he made the Seahawks after being drafted in the fifth round in 2018.


New commissioners thrust into conference realignment chaos

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Conference realignment is returning to college sports at the same time three Power Five leagues are breaking in relatively new commissioners.

The Big 12 is trying to keep Oklahoma and Texas from leaving for the Southeastern Conference. Officials with the Big Ten and Pac-12 says they are not concerned amid the reports. The Atlantic Coast Conference is interested in adding Notre Dame. The Fighting Irish, however, have not been interested in joining a league.


Osaka lights cauldron at opening ceremony

TOKYO (AP) — Tennis star Naomi Osaka has lit the cauldron at the opening ceremony of the Tokyo Games, ending the flame’s long journey from Greece.

Sadaharu Oh, Shigeo Nagashima and Hideki Matsui were among the baseball greats who took part in bringing the flame into the stadium. They passed it to a doctor and nurse who ran a couple hundred yards with it, then handed off to a Paralympic athlete.

Six students were next to take it closer to the stage, and at the foot of the stage with the last torch was Osaka — the four-time Grand Slam winner who will compete at the Tokyo Games. She took it to the center of the stage. A staircase emerged, the cauldron opened and Osaka walked to the top, dipped the flame in, the cauldron ignited and fireworks filled the sky.

Osaka wrote on Instagram that lighting the cauldron was “undoubtedly the greatest athletic achievement and honor I will ever have in my life.”

Osaka was born in Japan and moved to the United States when she was 3. The No. 2-ranked Osaka and top-ranked Ash Barty are favorites to win the women’s singles title Olympic tennis tournament that starts Saturday. Osaka opens against 52nd-ranked Zheng Saisai of China on Sunday.

In other Olympic news:

—About 100 of the 613 U.S. athletes descending on Tokyo for the Olympics are unvaccinated, according to the U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Committee’s medical chief. Medical director Jonathan Finnoff says some 600 of the American athletes had filled out their health histories as they prepared for the trip and estimated 83% had replied they were vaccinated.

—A debate is brewing between former gold medalist Maya DiRado and some American swimmers over U.S. medal threat Michael Andrew’s decision not to be vaccinated against the COVID-19 virus on the eve of competition at the Tokyo Olympics. DiRado sparked the discourse this week with a lengthy thread on Twitter in which she wrote that she’s disappointed in Andrew’s decision to compete unvaccinated and his reasoning behind it. Some of Andrew’s current teammates publicly defended the 22-year-old swimmer and criticized DiRado for the timing and content of her comments.

— The World Anti-Doping Agency says several Russian athletes have been kept away from the Games because of doping suspicions based on evidence from a Moscow testing laboratory that was shut down in 2015. WADA’s director general says it intervened with sports bodies to ensure the athletes were not selected. The team of 335 Russian athletes accredited for Tokyo is competing without a national flag and anthem as punishment for state tampering with the Moscow lab’s database.

—The Swiss Olympic team says 400-meter hurdler Kariem Hussein has accepted a nine-month ban after testing positive for a banned stimulant. The 2014 European champion was entered in the event at the Tokyo Games. The heats start next Friday. It is unclear if Hussein will be replaced in the 40-athlete lineup.

— Six Polish swimmers have returned home before the Olympics even started, their dreams scuttled by the country mistakenly sending too many athletes to Tokyo. Only 17 swimmers from Poland qualified for the Tokyo Games. The country’s swimming federation put 23 athletes on the plane to Japan, sparking outrage among those who were denied a chance to compete.

— Australian swimmer Kaylee McKeown has surprisingly withdrawn from one of her best events because of a busy schedule at the Tokyo Olympics. McKeown dropped the 200-meter individual medley, where she’s ranked No. 1 in the world and would have been a favorite to win a gold medal. She’ll focus instead on her two backstroke events and the relays.

—A bad weather forecast for Monday in Tokyo has prompted Olympic officials to move scheduled rowing events to Sunday. Officials say rain, high winds and strong gusts could cause choppy and potentially unrowable conditions at the Sea Forest Waterway in Tokyo Bay. The opening heats in the men’s and women’s eights also were moved from Sunday to Saturday.


Sabres add 1st-round pick in trading Ristolainen to Flyers

UNDATED (AP) — The Buffalo Sabres have traded veteran defenseman Rasmus Ristolainen (rihs-toh-LY’-nehn) to the Philadelphia Flyers.

Buffalo, which has the first pick in Friday night’s NHL draft, acquired fifth-year defenseman Robert Hagg and the Flyers’ first-round pick. Buffalo also acquired Philadelphia’s second-round pick in the 2023 draft.

Ristolainen gives the Flyers another right-shot defenseman for their top four after acquiring Ryan Ellis from Nashville last weekend.

The trade could be the first of several made by Sabres general manager Kevyn Adams, who is also shopping captain Jack Eichel (EYE’-kul) and forward Sam Reinhart.

In other NHL news:

— The New York Rangers have put defenseman Tony DeAngelo on unconditional waivers for the purposes of buying out the final year of his contract. DeAngelo was sent home last season after an undisclosed incident followed warnings about his behavior. The 25-year-old can sign anywhere as a free agent when the market opens next week. DeAngelo went unclaimed off waivers by the NHL’s other 30 teams last season. DeAngelo is only one season removed from putting up 53 points in 68 games.


US women tell 9th Circuit trial court didn’t factor success

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Players on the U.S. women’s national soccer team urged a federal appeals court to reinstate their equal pay lawsuit, saying their greater success than the American men was not taken into account by a trial court judge who dismissed their case.

Players led by Alex Morgan sued the U.S. Soccer Ferderation in March 2019, contending they have not been paid equitably under their collective bargaining agreement that runs through December 2021, compared to what the men’s team receives under its agreement that expired in December 2018. U.S. District Judge R. Gary Klausner threw out the pay claim in May 2020.


Darren Clarke holds 1-stroke lead at Senior British Open

SUNNINGDALE, England (AP) — Darren Clarke of Northern Ireland holds a one-stroke lead after two rounds at the Senior British Open. He shot a 3-under 67 after posting an opening 65 at Sunningdale.

Clarke is on track to join the history books. He won the British Open in 2011. Only three other players have won both tournaments.

Clarke is at 8-under 132. Jerry Kelly was a stroke back with defending champion Bernhard Langer (LAHN’-gur). Two-time British Open champion Ernie Els was two strokes back. He has the same opportunity as Clarke to become just the fourth player to win both tournaments.


Jeongeun Lee6 ties golf majors record for lowest round of 61

EVIAN-LES-BAINS, France (AP) — South Korean golfer Jeongeun Lee6 has tied the golf majors record for the lowest round ever after carding a 10-under-par 61 at the Evian Championship. Her 36-hole score of 127 is also the lowest total in women’s or men’s major history, beating the 128 by Brooks Koepka (KEHP’-kuh) at the 2019 U.S. PGA Championship.

Lee6′s 10 birdies in a bogey-free second round earned her a three-shot lead at 15 under. Her 61 equaled countrywoman Hyo Joo Kim, who shot lowest score by a female or male in a major in the first round in 2014 at the same Evian Resort.

Categories: National Sports