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Update on the latest in sports:

September 21, 2017


Red Sox, Yankees enjoy laughers

UNDATED (AP) — The Boston Red Sox took the field at Orioles Park at Camden Yards last night knowing they had to win to maintain a three-game lead over the New York Yankees in the AL East. The Yanks enjoyed a blowout win over the Minnesota Twins, and the Red Sox held serve by slamming the Birds in Baltimore.

The Red Sox capped a three-game sweep with a 9-0 rout of the Orioles. The game was scoreless until Mookie Betts and Deven Marrero belted two-run homers off Wade Miley in the fourth inning.

Hanley Ramirez finished with three hits and three RBIs to back an outstanding performance by Chris Sale, who struck out 13 while tossing four-hit ball over eight innings for his 17th victory. Sale joined Pedro Martinez as the only Red Sox hurlers to fan 300 in a season.

Earlier Wednesday, Aaron Judge slammed his league-leading 45th home run and went over the 100-RBI mark while the Yankees were turning a 3-0 deficit into an 11-3 pounding of the Twins. Judge started the comeback with a two-run blast that allowed him to join Joe DiMaggio, Tony Lazzeri and Hideki Matsui as the only Yankee rookies to drive in 100 runs.

Didi Gregorius (DEE’-dee greh-GOHR’-ee-uhs) added a three-run blast that gives him 25 home runs this season, breaking Derek Jeter’s team record for shortstops.

Gary Sanchez also went deep as the Yanks dealt the Twins their fifth loss in six games.

Checking out other major league finals:

— Joe Panik tripled, doubled and scored the Giants’ first two runs in a 4-0 shutout of the Rockies. Brandon Crawford added a solo homer and Matt Moore worked six shutout innings as San Francisco handed Colorado its third straight loss. The Rockies still own a one-game lead over Milwaukee for the final NL wild-card slot.

— It was a tough night for Brewers closer Corey Knebel (keh-NAY’-bul) as he committed a game-tying error and served up a gopher ball in a 6-4 loss at Pittsburgh. Adam Frazier ended it with a two-run, walk-off blast in the bottom of the ninth, one inning after Knebel threw away a two-out grounder to allow Andrew McCutchen to score the tying run. Milwaukee wasted homers by Domingo Santana and Jesus Aguilar in staying 3 1/2 games behind the NL Central-leading Cubs.

— The Cubs’ seven-game winning streak is over after Blake Snell held them to two hits over seven shutout innings to lead the Rays’ 8-1 pounding of Chicago. Wilson Ramos had three hits and two RBIs, while Steven Souza Jr. added a solo homer. Losing pitcher Jon Lester was tagged for seven runs and eight hits over 4 1/3 innings.

— Homers by Matt Carpenter, Dexter Fowler and Paul DeJong (deh-YUHNG’) highlighted the Cardinals’ 9-2 thumping of the Reds. Tommy Pham was 3-for-5 with two RBIs and two runs scored to back Luke Weaver, who struck out seven and allowed two runs over five innings to win his seventh straight start. The win puts the Redbirds five games off the NL Central lead and within 2 ½ games of the second NL wild card.

— The Phillies beat the Dodgers for the third straight day as Aaron Altherr (ahl-TEHR’) hit a tiebreaking, two-run single in the eighth inning of Philadelphia’s 7-5 win over the NL West leaders. Altherr also smacked a two-run homer and Tommy Joseph added a solo shot, both coming in the seventh inning after the Phils blew a 2-1 lead. Chris Taylor homered for the Dodgers, who still own a magic number of two to clinch a division title.

— The Diamondbacks overcame Hunter Renfroe’s three home runs and a 6-2 deficit by scoring 11 times over the last four innings of a 13-7 win at San Diego. A.J. Pollock crushed a three-run homer in the ninth to help Arizona put the game out of reach. J.D. Martinez slammed his 41st homer of the season after David Peralta. (peh-RAHL’-tah) and Jake Lamb went deep for the DBacks.

— Daniel Murphy, Ryan Zimmerman and Anthony Rendon (rehn-DOHN’) worked out consecutive bases-loaded walks to ignite the Nationals’ six-run eighth in a 7-3 comeback over the Braves. The rally allowed Gio Gonzalez to get his 15th win and moved Washington within four wins of the Dodgers in the battle for home-field advantage throughout the National League playoffs. The Braves reached Gonzalez for just two runs and three hits while fanning eight times against the lefty, who gave up solo shots by Freddie Freeman and Kurt Suzuki.

— Francisco Lindor’s (lihn-DOHRZ’) two-run blast broke a 2-2 tie in the seventh inning as the Indians outlasted the Angels, 6-5. Jason Kipnis and Giovanny Urshela (jee-oh-VAH’-nee ur-SHEH’-lah) hit RBI doubles to help Cleveland win for the 26th time in its last 27 games. Albert Pujols (POO-holz) belted his 614th career home run for the Angels, who remain 1 ½ games behind Minnesota for the second AL wild card.

— Yuli Gurriel (YOO’-lee GUR’-ee-ehl) lined a two-run double in the fourth inning to put the Astros ahead to stay in a 4-3 decision over the White Sox. Brad Peacock is 12-2 after allowing just one hit over six innings - a two-run homer by Yoan Moncada. Houston is 1 ½ games behind Cleveland for the AL’s best record.

— The Rangers sit 2 ½ games from an AL wild-card spot after Rougned Odor’s (ROOG’-nehd oh-DOHRZ’) grand slam capped a seven-run fourth in an 8-6 victory at Seattle. Nomar (NOH’-mahr) Mazara was 2-for-5 with a two-run single to help Texas get its third consecutive win. The Mariners absorbed their fifth straight loss and fell four games out of a postseason berth despite homers by Nelson Cruz and Mitch Haniger.

— The Royals blasted the Blue Jays, 15-5 as Whit Merrifield went 3-for-5 with two RBIs and three runs scored. Salvador Perez added a solo shot and three RBIs, for the Royals, who got two ribbies apiece from Eric Hosmer, Alcides (al-SEE’-dehs) Escobar and Melky Cabrera.

— Giancarlo Stanton launched his major league-leading 56th homer and drove in three runs as the Marlins hammered the Mets, 9-2 to complete a three-game sweep. A.J. Ellis and Miguel Rojas hit back-to-back homers to back Jose Urena, who is 14-6 after holding the Mets to two runs over eight innings.

— Daniel Mengden scattered seven hits over seven scoreless innings as the Athletics topped the Tigers, 3-2 to wrap up a three-game sweep. Marcus Semien smacked a two-run homer and drove in all three Oakland runs.


Estrada takes 1-year extension

UNDATED (AP) — Marco Estrada will continue to pitch for the Toronto Blue Jays next season.

Estrada has signed a one-year, $13 million deal to remain with the ballclub in 2018.

Estrada is 9-8 with a 4.84 ERA in 31 starts this season, his third with the Blue Jays. He has gone 5-1 with a 4.10 ERA in eight starts since a 12-start winless streak.

Also in the majors:

— Padres lefty Clayton Richard has accepted a two-year, $6 million contract rather than test the free agent market this fall. Richard is 7-14 with a 4.82 ERA over 185 innings this year.

— A young girl was injured by a foul ball off the bat of Yankees infielder Todd Frazier during Wednesday’s game against Minnesota. The Yankees said the girl was taken to a hospital for treatment, and New York manager Joe Girardi said he had been told by security that she was OK. The game was delayed for about 4 minutes while she was attended to and then carried from the seats in the bottom of the fifth inning.


Vikings’ Bradford says knee is ‘better’

UNDATED (AP) — Minnesota Vikings quarterback Sam Bradford says his left knee is feeling better this week, raising the possibility he’ll return from injury after only a one-game absence. Bradford was ruled out Sunday after going through pregame warmups at Pittsburgh. Case Keenum took over at quarterback for the Vikings, who lost 26-9 to the Steelers.

Bradford said he hurt the knee in the season opener against New Orleans, when he had a career-best 143.0 passer rating in leading the Vikings to a 29-19 victory over the Saints. Bradford has twice had his left ACL surgically repaired.

In other NFL news:

— Seahawks cornerback Richard Sherman says he believes the NFL injury report exists only to help set point spreads on games. League spokesman Brian McCarthy said the injury report is a decades-old policy to ensure accurate information is provided to other teams and the public.

— Cincinnati coach Marvin Lewis is telling Bengals players that more changes are coming if they continue to lose, and the next job lost could be theirs. The 0-2 Bengals are the first team since the 1939 Eagles to open a season with a pair of home games and fail to score a touchdown.

— Jets acting owner Christopher Johnson insists the team is “definitely not” tanking this season, despite outside talk they might be sacrificing victories for better chances at the No. 1 overall draft pick next year. Johnson says he will judge the fates of coach Todd Bowles and general manager Mike Maccagnan based on how the team progresses and not wins and losses.

— Dolphins coach Adam Gase says he’ll decide later whether to let linebacker Lawrence Timmons rejoin the team. Timmons was suspended indefinitely after he went AWOL Saturday, the day before the Dolphins’ season-opening win over the Chargers.

— The Titans have placed linebacker Aaron Wallace on injured reserve and signed wide receiver Zach Pascal off the practice squad. Wallace had been dealing with a back issue since the preseason.

— The Detroit Lions have signed defensive end George Johnson and released defensive end Alex Barrett. Johnson had a career-high six sacks with the 2014 Lions and was one of the Buccaneers’ final cuts before this season began.

— DeMaurice (deh-MOHR’-ihs) Smith has been re-elected as executive director of the players’ union in a special committee vote. The 14-0 vote took place Tuesday night.


Pacific slapped by NCAA

STOCKTON, Calif. (AP) — The NCAA has punished the Pacific men’s basketball program for academic and recruiting violations under former coach Ron Verlin.

Penalties include two years of probation, recruiting and scholarship reductions, a $5,000 fine and a vacation of all games in which ineligible athletes participated.

The NCAA said Verlin failed to promote an atmosphere of compliance when he violated academic misconduct and recruiting rules to get prospects eligible. He also failed to monitor his coaches and violated NCAA ethics rules when he encouraged others to give false information during the investigation.


Blues’ Steen injures hand, will miss rest of preseason

ST. LOUIS (AP) — St. Louis Blues forward Alexander Steen will miss the rest of training camp after suffering a left hand injury in the team’s first preseason game Tuesday against Dallas.

The 33-year-old Steen will be re-evaluated in three weeks.


Midwestern State player, 19, dies after injury during game

WICHITA FALLS, Texas (AP) — A 19-year-old Midwestern State football player has died after suffering a neck injury while making a tackle during a home game last weekend.

School President Suzanne Shipley has released a statement mourning the death of cornerback Robert Grays of Houston. Shipley says Grays died Tuesday at a hospital in his hometown.


Chip Ganassi Racing to downsize to 2 cars in IndyCar in 2018

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Chip Ganassi Racing will return to a two-car team in the IndyCar Series next season.

Scott Dixon will return as driver of the No. 9, and the team said a driver for the No. 10 will be announced later. It is widely believed that New Zealand’s Brendon Hartley will take over that seat.

Tony Kanaan is expected to move to A.J. Foyt Racing.


Boxer LaMotta, immortalized in ‘Raging Bull,’ dies at 95

MIAMI (AP) — Former middleweight champion Jake LaMotta has died at 95.

LaMotta’s life was depicted in the 1980 film “Raging Bull,” which was based on his memoir and earned Robert DeNiro an Academy Award for best actor.

LaMotta was 83-19-4 with 30 knockouts, taking the middleweight title in 1949 when Marcel Cerdan couldn’t continue after the 10th round.

He also admitted in testimony before a U.S. Senate committee that he threw a fight against Billy Fox, saying he was promised a shot at a title if he did.

LaMotta fought Sugar Ray Robinson six times, handing Robinson his first defeat. He lost the middleweight title to him in what became known as the St. Valentine’s Day Massacre.

His fiancee says LaMotta died Tuesday at a Miami-area hospital from complications of pneumonia.


Man United revenue climbs 13 percent to record $783 million

MANCHESTER, England (AP) — Manchester United generated a record 581.2 million pounds ($783 million) during Jose Mourinho’s first year as manager.

United won the League Cup and the Europa League last season, earning a spot in the Champions League for this season despite finishing sixth in the Premier League.

As well as the 13 percent jump in revenue, United also reports that pre-tax profits rose 8 percent to 39.2 million pounds in the year to June 30, 2017.

Staff costs climbed 14 percent to 31.3 million pounds, largely due to salaries of players.

United is forecasting revenue of 575-585 million pounds in the current financial year.

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