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Update on the latest in sports:

March 19, 2019


AP source: Trout, Angels close to record $432M, 12-year deal

LOS ANGELES (AP) — A person familiar with the negotiations tells The Associated Press that Mike Trout and the Los Angeles Angels are close to finalizing a $432 million, 12-year contract that would shatter the record for the largest deal in North American sports history.

The deal was disclosed Tuesday by a person familiar with the negotiations.

Trout would top the new $330 million, 12-year contract between Bryce Harper and the Philadelphia Phillies, and his $36 million average annual value would surpass Zack Greinke’s $34.4 million in a six-year deal with Arizona that started in 2016.

Progress toward an agreement was first reported by ESPN.

Trout’s deal includes a signing bonus and would supersede the $144.5 million, six-year contract that had been set to pay him $66.5 million over the next two seasons.


Tigers RHP Michael Fulmer may need Tommy John surgery

LAKELAND, FLA (AP) — Detroit Tigers right-hander Michael Fulmer may need Tommy John surgery.

The Tigers said Tuesday on Twitter that surgery to reconstruct the ulnar collateral ligament in the elbow has been recommended following an MRI exam and a second opinion from Dr. James Andrews.

Fulmer, who experienced elbow soreness during a recent bullpen session, will seek a third opinion.

Fulmer won AL Rookie of the Year honors in 2016 but has struggled to return to that form. He was 3-12 with a 4.69 ERA last year, his season cut short in mid-September because of knee problems.


Patriots owner Kraft offered plea deal in prostitution case

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. (AP) — Florida prosecutors have offered a plea deal to New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft and other men charged with paying for illicit sex at a massage parlor.

The Palm Beach State Attorney’s Office confirmed it has offered Kraft and 24 other men charged with soliciting prostitution the standard diversion program offered to first-time offenders. The men must concede they would be found guilty, perform 100 hours community service, attend a class on the dangers of prostitution and pay $5,000 per count, spokesman Mike Edmondon said. Kraft was charged with two counts last month.

In return, the charges of misdemeanor soliciting prostitution would be dropped.

None have accepted so far.


Play-in games set

DAYTON, Ohio — Temple coach Fran Dunphy is coaching his last NCAA Tournament before retiring. His Owls face Belmont in the First Four tonight.

The First Four, the annual NCAA Tournament play-in event, has always been a national showcase for at least one historically black college that doesn’t usually see the national spotlight. This year, North Carolina Central and Prairie View A & M will have the chance to get their first tournament wins. Prairie View A&M meets Fairleigh Dickinson on the court tonight.


NCAA can’t keep tournament games away from legal gambling

WASHINGTON (AP) — The NCAA says it won’t move future tournament games away from states or venues where gambling is legal.

Although the organization remains opposed to gambling on its events, NCAA officials say they can’t do anything to stop the spread of legal sports betting.

This year’s NCAA men’s and women’s basketball tournaments will be the first since the Supreme Court allowed sports betting in any state that wants it.


UNDATED (AP) — In the NBA tonight, the Golden State Warriors, wrapping up a four-game road trip with a slim lead for the top seed in the Western Conference playoffs, visit the Minnesota Timberwolves.

Other matchups see Philadelphia at Charlotte, Houston at Atlanta, the Lakers in Milwaukee, Brooklyn at Sacramento -- and, playing the second game of a back-to-back, the Indiana Pacers visit the Los Angeles Clippers.


AP Source: Cup champion Capitals to visit White House

WASHINGTON (AP) — A person with direct knowledge of the decision says the Washington Capitals will go to the White House on Monday to celebrate their Stanley Cup championship.

The Capitals will continue the NHL’s tradition of visiting the sitting president at the White House. The NBA’s Golden State Warriors and NFL’s Philadelphia Eagles did not visit President Donald Trump after winning championships.

The Capitals won the first Stanley Cup in franchise history last June against the Vegas Golden Knights.


Islanders host Bruins

UNDATED (AP) — As the New York Islanders head into tonight’s game at home against the Boston Bruins, the Islanders are tied for the NHL’s Metropolitan Division lead with the Washington Capitals. Each team has 91 points with 10 games remaining, but the Islanders currently hold the tiebreaker with a greater scoring differential. The Bruins, meanwhile, hope to have forward David Pastrnak back on the ice for the first time in more than a month. He’s been out of action following thumb surgery.

The Colorado Avalanche sit four points behind Arizona for the second wild card in the NHL’s Western Conference. And tonight Colorado plays another of the teams competing for that wild card spot, the Minnesota Wild. Minnesota is three points ahead of Colorado in that chase.

In other ice action:

The Carolina Hurricanes host the Pittsburgh Penguins

The Montreal Canadiens visit the Philadelphia Flyers.

The Detroit Red Wings visit the New York Rangers

The Edmonton Oilers visit the St. Louis Blues

The Toronto Maple Leafs visit the Nashville Predators

The Florida Panthers visit the Dallas Stars

The Columbus Blue jackets visit the Calgary Flames


Rams sign former Jags QB Blake Bortles to back up Goff

THOUSAND OAKS, Calif. (AP) — Quarterback Blake Bortles has agreed to a one-year deal to become Jared Goff’s backup with the Los Angeles Rams. Bortles joins the Rams after spending his first five seasons as the up-and-down starter for the Jacksonville Jaguars. The Jags released him last week after signing Super Bowl MVP Nick Foles.


Japanese Olympic Committee head resigns amid bribery scandal

TOKYO (AP) — The head of the Japanese Olympic Committee is resigning in a bribery scandal that investigators think may have helped Tokyo land next year’s Olympics. Tsunekazu Takeda has denied any wrongdoing but says he will step aside in June for the good of the upcoming games.

The scandal, which French authorities have been investigating for several years, has cast a long shadow over the Tokyo Olympics and underlines flawed efforts by the IOC to clean up its bidding process. Japan is spending at least $20 billion to organize the games, which open on July 24, 2020.