BC-FL--Florida Sports Digest, FL
The supervisor is David Fischer. All times are in Eastern Time unless otherwise noted. If there are questions about stories, photos or photo contributions please call the Miami bureau at 1-800-824-5498 or 305-594-5825. Ian Mader is the News Editor and can be reached directly at firstname.lastname@example.org. If you have other statewide stories or breaking news of interest to AP members in Florida, send them via email to Miami@ap.org (ASCII text only, no attachments); or fax to (305) 594-9265. The AP’s general website is http://www.ap.org. The Florida AP’s website is http://www.ap.org/Florida/. AP stories, along with the photos that accompany them, can also be obtained from http://www.apexchange.com. Reruns are also available from the Service Desk (800-838-4616) or from the Miami bureau.
ST. PETERSBURG — Masahiro Tanaka starts for New York when the Yankees continue a four-game road series against opener Ryne Stanek and the Tampa Bay Rays. By Mark Didtler. UPCOMING: 600 words, photos. Game starts at 7:10 p.m. ET.
WASHINGTON — Bryce Harper plays what could be his last home game at Nationals Park on Wednesday, when Washington hosts the Miami Marlins in its home finale of a lost season. By Howard Fendrich. Starts at 4:05 p.m. UPCOMING: 700 words, photos.
NATIONALS-HARPER’S HOME FINALE
WASHINGTON — More than 3½ hours before the start of what many expect to be his last game at Nationals Park as a member of the Washington Nationals, Bryce Harper stood at his locker and let his eyes linger on that familiar white jersey with the curly red “W″ on the front and his last name on the back. Then Harper, who can become a free agent at season’s end, put on his full uniform, right down to the stirrups — the only player ready that far ahead of Washington’s 9-3 victory in its home finale against the Miami Marlins, which was stopped Wednesday after seven innings because of rain. By Howard Fendrich.
HOUSTON — Houston pitcher Lance McCullers Jr. has offered advice and a free playoff ticket to an 8-year-old special needs girl who apparently was yelled at by another fan for loudly cheering at an Astros game. McCullers on Wednesday tweeted “Chloe, don’t you EVER stop cheering” and offered her a ticket for an Oct. 5 playoff game.
ST. PETERSBURG — New York Yankees shortstop Didi Gregorius and center fielder Aaron Hicks could return from injuries during a regular season-ending series this weekend at Boston. Gregorius was cleared to resume baseball activities after a hand specialist examined his right wrist. Gregorius tore cartilage in the wrist during a head-first slide last weekend while scoring the run that clinched a postseason berth.
BOCA RATON — Miami guard Tyler Johnson has already seen what his new-and-much-improved paychecks from the Heat will look like this season. Frankly, he’s still stunned. By Tim Reynolds.
FOXBOROUGH, Mass. — The Patriots are just three games into the season, but their problems on offense are quickly starting to pile up. New England has displayed numerous issues in the passing game during back-to-back losses . But its inability to produce a sustained rushing attack has been just as glaring. By Kyle Hightower.
JACKSONVILLE — DJ Chark’s biggest contribution in three games with the Jacksonville Jaguars is a fumble recovery. The rookie receiver, a second-round draft pick from LSU, coughed up the football after his lone reception in Week 2 and had a huge drop in a home loss to Tennessee last week. By Mark Long.
T25-NORTH CAROLINA-MIAMI PREVIEW CAPSULE
North Carolina (1-2, 1-0 Atlantic Coast Conference) at No. 16 Miami (3-1, 0-0), 8 p.m. ET (ESPN) Line: Miami by 17 1/2. By The Associated Press.
Power football is alive and well in the Southeastern Conference with several backs putting up impressive numbers running through and around defenders. Kentucky’s Benny Snell Jr. is one of four SEC backs ranked in the top 20 in rushing yardage per game. Snell is third, Mississippi’s Scottie Phillips is 13th, Texas A&M’s Trayveon Williams is 18th and LSU’s Nick Brossette is 20th. By Gary B. Graves.
MIAMI GARDENS — Miami’s Mark Richt and North Carolina’s Larry Fedora fielded plenty of questions this week about their teams’ respective quarterback situations. Neither offered much of an answer. By Tim Reynolds.
ORLANDO — The second-in-command at the LPGA Tour has been appointed the chief executive officer of Arnold Palmer Enterprises and president of charitable foundation “Arnie’s Army.” Jon Podany spent eight years at the LPGA, most recently as chief commercial officer, where he teamed with Commissioner Mike Whan in strengthening the LPGA schedule and its media distribution.
The AP, Miami