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Update on the latest in sports:

June 28, 2017


Florida wins first national title in baseball

OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — Florida scored four runs in the eighth inning to pull away from LSU, and the Gators beat their Southeastern Conference rival 6-1 Tuesday night to complete a two-game sweep in the College World Series finals for their first national title in baseball.

The Gators (52-19) posted the eighth sweep in the 15 years of the best-of-three finals format, and first since 2013. LSU (52-20) lost for the first time in seven appearances in a championship game.

Freshman Tyler Dyson (4-0) limited the Tigers to three hits in six innings in only his second start, and the Gators capitalized on LSU errors in the first and second innings to go up 2-0 against Jared Poche’ (12-4).

Down 2-1 in the seventh, LSU had what would have been the tying run sent back to third base because of a runner interference call at second on a double-play ball. In the eighth, the Tigers failed to push across a run after having runners on the corners with no outs.


Washington draws even in Cubs series

WASHINGTON (AP) — Max Scherzer allowed one run and two hits as the Washington Nationals knocked Chicago Cubs starter Jake Arrieta out in the fifth inning on the way to a 6-1 victory Tuesday night in a showdown of the past two NL Cy Young Award winners.

Scherzer (9-5) was dominant in his six innings of work, striking out six with no walks and retiring 16 of the final 17 batters he faced. The right-hander allowed an earned run in the first inning for the first time since April and his streak of 10-plus strikeout games ended at six, but he was in control almost all night.

Arrieta (7-6), on the other hand, struggled with his control as he issued a season-high six walks and allowed five earned runs, getting the hook two batters into the fifth inning. The 2014 Cy Young winner hadn’t walked more than three batters in a game this season.

The win allowed the Nationals to even the four game series with the visiting Cubs 1-1. Both teams were in the playoffs last season; the Cubs went on to beat the Cleveland Indians in the World Series to win the championship, and the Nationals lost in the NL Division Series to the Los Angeles Dodgers.

In other games:

— Adrian Beltre hit his 450th career home run, a solo drive in the ninth inning off Cody Allen that sent the Texas Rangers over the Cleveland Indians 2-1. Beltre drove the first pitch from Allen (0-4) into the left field bleachers, and moved into sole possession of 39th place on the all-time homer list.

— Kevin Gausman won for the first time in four starts, Mark Trumbo hit an RBI double and the Baltimore Orioles beat the Toronto Blue Jays 3-1. The Orioles won their third straight and improved to 8-2 against the Blue Jays this season. Toronto lost for the fifth time in seven games.

— Joey Votto hit a tiebreaking two-run homer in the fifth inning, helping the last-place Cincinnati Reds top the Milwaukee Brewers 8-6. Billy Hamilton, Adam Duvall and Eugenio Suarez also connected for Cincinnati, which scored its most runs in 19 games since Scooter Gennett hit four homers in its 13-1 win over St. Louis on June 6.

— David Freese misplayed a groundball at third base, allowing Steven Souza Jr. to score in the 10th inning and giving the Tampa Bay Rays a 4-2 win over the Pittsburgh Pirates. With Souza at first base and no outs, Wilson Ramos hit a hard grounder off Felipe Rivero (3-2) that Freese missed while trying to backhand. Adeiny Hechavarria added a sacrifice fly in the inning, giving him two RBIs in his first game since being traded from the Miami Marlins.

— J.D. Martinez and Miguel Cabrera homered and Justin Verlander pitched seven strong innings as the Detroit Tigers beat the Kansas City Royals 5-3. Verlander (5-4) was down 3-0 before getting an out, but didn’t allow another run as the Tigers won their second straight after an eight-game losing streak.

— Ichiro Suzuki had a pinch-hit RBI single in the seventh inning to put Miami ahead, Christian Yelich had three hits and the Marlins beat the New York Mets 6-3. Suzuki poked a pitch to the opposite field against Jerry Blevins for a 4-3 lead. The 43-year-old Suzuki leads the majors with 12 pinch-hits. Yelich added a two-run single in the seventh, his third hit. Dan Straily allowed two runs in five innings, and A.J. Ramos pitched around a leadoff single in the ninth for his 13th save.

— Ryon Healy’s first career grand slam broke a tie in the sixth inning and the Oakland Athletics held on for a 6-4 victory over the Houston Astros. The score was 1-1 when Matt Joyce singled to start the sixth. Jed Lowrie singled with one out before Yonder Alonso drew a walk with two outs to load the bases and chase Mike Fiers (5-3). He was replaced by James Hoyt, who was greeted with Healy’s 18th homer — a full-count shot which landed in the second row of the seats in right field to put the Athletics up 5-1.

— Chris Herrmann hit a game-ending RBI single in the 10th inning, and the Arizona Diamondbacks rallied to beat the St. Louis Cardinals 6-5 Tuesday night. The surging Diamondbacks scored two in the eighth and one in the ninth to force extra innings. They have won four in a row and 13 of 15. Rey Fuentes opened the Arizona 10th with a single and advanced on a sacrifice by pinch-hitting pitcher Zack Godley. Herrmann singled off Matt Bowman (1-3). Diamondbacks closer Fernando Rodney (2-2) pitched a 1-2-3 10th inning for the win.

— Dodgers right-hander Kenta Maeda pitched four-hit ball over seven innings in a spot start, and Joc Pederson hit a three-run homer, and the Dodgers beat the Angels 4-0. Maeda (6-3) was moved to the bullpen earlier this month, but filled in Tuesday to give the rotation an extra day of rest. He stuck out six and walked none. Angels starter Jesse Chavez (5-8) was pulled in the sixth after getting into a jam, and Cody Bellinger greeted Jose Alvarez with an RBI single. Pederson hit his seventh home run two batters later. The Dodgers have won 17 of 19 and lead the National League with a 52-27 record.

— Chris Young hit a three-run homer, Christian Vazquez went deep for the first time in more than a year and the Red Sox beat the Twins 9-2 in a game delayed twice by stormy weather. Drew Pomeranz (7-4) pitched five effective innings for Boston, which won consecutive games for the first time in nearly two weeks. Dustin Pedroia had three hits and scored twice. The Red Sox capitalized on three errors by the Twins and took over first place in the AL East, moving a half-game ahead of the slumping Yankees. Hector Santiago (4-7) returned for the Twins after a stint on the 10-day disabled list with a strained left shoulder. He allowed two runs and one hit in two innings.

— Jose Abreu hit a game-ending, two-run single off Dellin Betances, and the White Sox stopped a four-game losing streak, beating the Yankees 4-3. Kevan Smith sparked the winning rally with a one-out walk. Betances (3-2) then walked Alen Hanson and hit Yolmer Sanchez, loading the bases. After Melky Cabrera fouled out, Abreu hit a grounder into left field. Brett Gardner’s throw to the plate was high, and Hanson scored easily. Abreu also had an RBI double in the third. Dan Jennings (3-1) pitched 1 1/3 scoreless innings for the win. New York wasted an outstanding start by Luis Severino, who struck out a career-high 12 while pitching seven innings of one-run ball. It has dropped three of four and 11 of 14 overall.

— Maikel Franco and Arron Altherr homered for Philadelphia, and Aaron Nola pitched seven strong innings, and the Phillies beat the Mariners 8-2. Franco opened the seventh with his 10th home run, sending a 1-0 pitch from James Paxton over the wall in left-center. The Phillies made it 4-2 in the eighth on an RBI single by Freddy Galvis and then added four unearned runs in the ninth, capped by Altherr’s two-run homer.

— Braves left-hander Sean Newcomb struck out eight over six-plus innings for his first major league victory and the Braves beat the Padres 3-0.Atlanta has won eight of 10. Johan Camargo had a two-run double off the left field wall in the fourth to begin the scoring, and Atlanta added an unearned run in the eighth. Newcomb (1-2) allowed six hits and walked one. He made his major league debut June 10 and has a 1.48 ERA through four starts. Padres starter Jhoulys Chacin (6-7) pitched seven innings of two-run ball. Jim Johnson struck out three in the ninth for his 16th save.


Cubs to visit White House; Francona hospitalized

UNDATED (AP) — Manager Joe Maddon and some of the Chicago Cubs will visit the White House on Wednesday, though it’s not an official visit with President Donald Trump.

Maddon said Tuesday that he was going out of respect for the Ricketts family, which owns the Cubs and donated to Trump’s campaign. Maddon said it was voluntary for players and not an official trip.

The Cubs are in Washington to play the Nationals.

The White House visit is so unofficial that Maddon said it’s only “a possibility” that he and the Cubs will see Trump. The team visited President Barack Obama at the White House as World Series champions in January before the end of his term.

In other MLB news:

— Indians manager Terry Francona missed Tuesday night’s game against Texas after his second trip to the hospital this month. The Indians said doctors for now have ruled out major health issues and Francona will be monitored the next several weeks.

The 58-year-old Francona left Monday night’s game because he wasn’t feeling well. He spent several hours at Cleveland Clinic and underwent a series of tests. Francona was released from the hospital on Tuesday and spent the rest of the day at home. He was expected to return to the dugout Wednesday when the Indians host the Rangers.

— Former New York Mets pitcher Anthony Young, who set a major league record with 27 straight losses, has died. He was 51. The Mets said Young died Tuesday in Houston after a long illness. He had told former teammates this spring that he had a brain tumor.


‘Big 4’ given top-4 seedings at Wimbledon; Kerber also No. 1

LONDON (AP) — The “Big 4” of men’s tennis were given the four highest seedings for this year’s tournament at Wimbledon.

No. 1-ranked Andy Murray, the defending champion, is the top-seeded player, followed by Novak Djokovic, Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal.

Nadal and Djokovic are also in the top four of the ATP rankings, but Federer is No. 5. Third-ranked Stan Wawrinka (vah-VRINK’-ah), who has won the other three Grand Slam titles but not Wimbledon, is seeded fifth.

Milos Raonic (MEE’-lohsh ROW’-nihch), Marin Cilic (CHIHL’-ihch), Dominic Thiem (teem), Kei Nishikori (kay nih-shih-KOHR’-ee) and Alexander Zverev round out the top 10 in the seedings.

In the women’s seedings, Angelique Kerber is No. 1 in a list that mirrors the top-10 rankings. The only exception is the absence of Serena Williams, who is pregnant and skipping the tournament.


Ledecky, Adrian steal opening night show at US nationals

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Olympic gold medalists Katie Ledecky and Nathan Adrian qualified for the American world championship team Tuesday night with each winning signature events at the U.S. National Championships.

Ledecky easily claimed the women’s 800-meter freestyle title in a time of 8:11.50. The defending Olympic and world champion won by 8.96 seconds over Leah Smith.

Adrian reclaimed the men’s 100 free title in 47.96 seconds, beating Caeleb Dressel by 0.01.

Each winner makes the team. Second-place finishers are likely to be added when the selection process ends.

Mallory Comerford defeated American record-holder Simone Manuel in the women’s 100 free. But it took the world’s third-fastest time of the year, 52.81, to win.

Hali Flickinger and Jack Conger claimed the 200 butterfly titles and True Sweetser won the men’s 1,500 free.


Justices to review New Jersey bid for legal sports betting

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Supreme Court will take up New Jersey’s bid to allow sports betting at its casinos and racetracks.

The justices say Tuesday they will review a lower court ruling against the state.

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie and supporters in the state Legislature have tried for years to legalize sports gambling to bolster the state’s casino and horse racing industries. The casino industry, after a period of job losses and closings, has lately been doing better.

The court jumped into the case even after the Trump administration urged the justices not to get involved.

The case will be argued in the fall.


UK prosecutors charge 6 over Hillsborough deaths

LONDON (AP) — British prosecutors have charged six people over the 1989 Hillsborough stadium disaster in Sheffield, in which 96 soccer fans were crushed to death.

Those charged include the police commander on the day, David Duckenfield, who is accused of gross negligence manslaughter.

The former chief of South Yorkshire Police, Norman Bettision, is charged with misconduct in public office for lying about the disaster and its aftermath.

The tragedy unfolded when more than 2,000 Liverpool soccer fans flooded into a standing-room section behind a goal, with the 54,000-capacity stadium already nearly full for the match against Nottingham Forest.


Review: USA Gymnastics needs ‘culture change’

UNDATED (AP) — A former federal prosecutor says USA Gymnastics needs a “complete cultural change” to better protect athletes from sexual abuse.

The review released Tuesday by Deborah Daniels recommends that all USA Gymnastics members be required to immediately report suspected sexual misconduct to legal authorities and the U.S. Center for SafeSport. Daniels also suggested that USA Gymnastics prohibit adults from being alone with minor gymnasts “at all times.” She also recommended preventing adult members from having “out of program” contact with gymnasts through email, text or social media.

USA Gymnastics ordered the review last fall following a series of civil lawsuits filed against the organization and a former team doctor by a pair of gymnasts who claim the physician sexually abused them during their time on the U.S. national team.

Daniels says USA Gymnastics “inadvertently suppressed” reporting of abuse because of several factors, including that athletes are taught to follow instructions and obey coaches and trainers.

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