A-Rod bypasses reporters
UNDATED (AP) — Baseball's non-waiver trade deadline has passed, but the clock is ticking for possible steroid suspensions.
Major League Baseball is threatening to kick Alex Rodriguez out of the game for life unless the New York Yankees star agrees not to fight a lengthy suspension for his role in baseball's latest drug scandal, according to a person familiar with the discussions.
The source added that whether Commissioner Bud Selig would actually issue a lifetime ban was unclear, and baseball officials know a permanent ban could be shortened by arbitrator Fredric Horowitz. Based on past cases, people involved believe Horowitz might cut a lifetime ban to about 200 games.
The Yankees expect Rodriguez to be accused of recruiting other athletes for a Florida clinic that allegedly distributed banned performance-enhancing drugs, as well as attempting to obstruct MLB's investigation and not being truthful with MLB in the past. He's the biggest name that's in the middle of baseball's probe of Biogenisis, the out-of-business anti-aging clinic.
Among the others who have been mentioned as part of the investigation are Padres All-Star shortstop Everth Cabrera, Tigers All-Star shortstop Jhonny Peralta and Toronto's Melky Cabrera. There's no word whether baseball plans to suspend them.
Birds get a starter, DBacks find a closer
UNDATED (AP) — The Major League Baseball trade deadline came and went without the usual flurry of activity. The Baltimore Orioles and Arizona Diamondbacks were the only playoff contenders to swing a deal hours before the deadline.
The Birds have acquired right-hander Bud Norris from Houston to help bolster a rotation that will be without injured Jason Hammel for what could be an extended period. The Orioles are sending outfielder L.J. Hoes and left-handed prospect Josh Hader to the Astros for Norris, who is 6-9 with a 3.93 ERA this season.
Hammel is being placed on the 15-day disabled list with a flexor mass strain in his right forearm.
The Diamondbacks have sent struggling right-hander Ian Kennedy to the San Diego Padres for left-handed reliever Joe Thatcher, a minor leaguer and a draft pick.
Kennedy is winless over the last two months and 3-8 with a 5.23 ERA in 21 starts this season, two years after going 11-4.
Thatcher is 3-1 with a 2.10 ERA in 50 games this season.
The Astros also pulled off a deal with Kansas City, sending outfielder Justin Maxwell to the Royals for minor league pitcher Kyle Smith. Maxwell is hitting just .241 with two homers and eight RBIs in 40 games this season, but that includes a .302 average against left-handed pitchers.
In other major league news, reliever Brian Wilson has signed his one-year contract with the Dodgers and will join the team following a minor league rehab assignment. Wilson hasn't pitched in the majors since April 12, 2012, the same month he underwent Tommy John surgery on his right elbow.
Tampa Bay has placed All-Star pitcher Matt Moore on the 15-day disabled list with a sore left elbow, three days after he left his last start after five innings. The 24-year-old left-hander is tied for second in the American League with 14 wins and an .824 winning percentage, and he's third in opposing batting average at .212.
Yovani Gallardo's (yoh-VAH'-nee gy-AHR'-dohz) strained left hamstring has landed the Milwaukee Brewers pitcher on the 15-day disabled list. The injury forced Gallardo to leave the Brewers' 6-5 victory over the Cubs on Tuesday in the fifth inning.
The St. Louis Cardinals have placed catcher Yadier (YAH'-dee-eer) Molina on the 15-day disabled list due to a sprained right knee that's bothered him for more than a month. Molina left a 6-0 loss to the Pittsburgh Pirates on Tuesday night after the third inning and flew to St. Louis on Wednesday for further examination. He is third in the National League with a .330 batting average.
Detroit slugger Miguel Cabrera sat out Wednesday's rout of Washington after aggravating his strained lower abdomen on Tuesday. The injury is related to the hip problem that caused him to miss four games last week.
Los Angeles Angels reliever Sean Burnett won't pitch again this season because of a torn flexor tendon in his left elbow. Burnett has been on the disabled list since May 28
Braves, Pirates pad leads
UNDATED (AP) — The Atlanta Braves now have their largest division lead in nine years following their sixth consecutive win.
Mike Minor scattered two hits in seven innings as the Braves ripped Colorado 9-0. Minor didn't walk a batter or allow a runner past first base in his 11th win of the season.
Brian McCann hit a three-run homer while Atlanta scored seven times in the third inning. Freddie Freeman added four hits and two RBIs as the Braves moved 11 games ahead of second-place Washington in the National League East.
Meanwhile, the Pittsburgh Pirates added another game to their NL Central lead. Russell Martin singled home the tiebreaking run in the bottom of the eighth to push the Bucs to a 5-4 win over St. Louis. Neil Walker went 2-for-4 with a solo homer and two runs scored to help the Pirates beat the Cardinals for the fourth time in three days and move 2½ games ahead of the Redbirds.
The Cardinals dropped their seventh in a row despite grabbing leads of 2-0, 3-2 and 4-3.
Also in the majors, Alex Avila hit a two-run homer and Torii Hunter added a solo shot while Detroit was scoring five times in the second inning. Hunter went 4-for-5 with three RBIs for the Tigers, who also put together a five-run fourth in sweeping the two-game series. Justin Verlander improved to 11-8 despite tying a season-high with five walks in just six innings.
Cleveland remains 2½ games behind the AL Central-leading Tigers after rallying for a 6-5 win over the Chicago White Sox. Carlos Santana won it with a leadoff homer in the bottom of the 10th, one inning after Michael Bourn and Jason Kipnis hit sacrifice flies to set up the Indians' ninth walkoff win.
Brett Oberholtzer picked up his first major league win by holding Baltimore to three hits in seven innings of Houston's 11-0 romp over Baltimore. Jason Castro hit a grand slam and Matt Dominguez delivered a career-high four hits, including a home run.
Toronto took the rubber match of its three-game series in Oakland this afternoon as Jose Bautista doubled home the tiebreaking run in the 10th inning of the Blue Jays' 5-2 triumph against the Athletics. Colby Rasmus added a two-run single in the 10th to help the Jays hand the A's only their fourth loss in 11 games.
Adrian Beltre homered in the bottom of the ninth to lift Texas past the Los Angeles Angels 2-1. Nelson Cruz also homered for the Rangers, who completed a three-game sweep in which they won each on walkoff homers to pull within four games of the AL West-leading A's.
Wade Miley gave up just two hits while striking out eight over 6 1/3 innings of Arizona's 7-0 shutout of Tampa Bay. Eric Chavez had three RBIs and Paul Goldschmidt socked his 24th homer as the Diamondbacks halted a three-game skid and pulled within 2 ½ games of the NL West-leading Dodgers.
The Dodgers lost for just the seventh time in 34 games as the New York Yankees scored three runs in the ninth to beat Los Angeles 3-0. Lyle Overbay snapped a scoreless tie with an RBI single before scoring on a two-run error by second baseman Mark Ellis.
Boston now leads the AL East by a half-game over the Rays after the Red Sox beat Seattle 5-4 on Stephen Drew's RBI single in the bottom of the 15th. Dustin Pedroia (peh-DROY'-uh) belted a two-run homer and had three RBIs in the Red Sox's
Brandon Phillips homered and Joey Votto (VAH'-toh) hit a two-run double as Cincinnati downed San Diego 4-1 to avoid a three-game sweep and end the Padres' four-game winning streak. Homer Bailey allowed no earned runs over 8 1/3 innings after entering the game 0-4 with a 4.68 ERA in four starts since his no-hitter on July 2.
The Phillies lost for the ninth time in 10 games as Brett Pill went 3-for-5 with a solo homer and four RBIs in San Francisco's 9-2 rout of Philadelphia. Chad Gaudin (goh-DAN') held the Phillies to a run and four hits in seven innings.
Henderson Alvarez allowed two runs and six hits in 7 1/3 innings to pitch Miami past the New York Mets 3-2. Jake Marisnick put the Marlins ahead to stay with his first big league homer, a solo homer in the second inning.
Anthony Rizzo hit a two-run homer and the Chicago Cubs avoided a four-game sweep by downing Milwaukee 6-1. David DeJesus had three RBIs to back Edwin Jackson, who gave up only one run on eight hits in eight innings.
GOLF_WOMEN'S BRITISH OPEN
Park makes solid start toward history
ST. ANDREWS, Scotland (AP) — Inbee Park began her pursuit of an unprecedented fourth straight major with a 3-under 69 in the Women's British Open.
For 10 holes, it looked as though Park would be tough to beat. After a ragged back nine, she was happy to break 70.
Park made five putts from 15 feet or longer in an amazing display with the putter. She made six birdies in 10 holes to get her name atop the leaderboard at St. Andrews. But the 25-year-old South Korean began missing fairways, and she took double bogey from a pot bunker in front of the 16th green.
Stacy Lewis had five birdies on the back nine and was the clubhouse leader at 5-under 67
Cooper apologizes for slur
PHILADELPHIA (AP) — Saying he was "ashamed and disgusted" with himself, Eagles wide receiver Riley Cooper apologized repeatedly for making a racial slur at a Kenny Chesney concert that was caught on video and led to him getting fined.
The video of Cooper using the N-word surfaced Wednesday on the Internet. Cooper called it the lowest of lows and said he had no excuse for directing the slur at an African-American security guard.
Gabbert back at practice
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (AP) — Jacksonville Jaguars quarterback Blaine Gabbert is back at practice, two days after spraining his right ankle. Gabbert had the ankle heavily taped for the team's first practice in full pads.
He didn't fully participate in the workouts, taking limited snaps. He's expects to fully return to practice Thursday.
Pro Bowl changes
NEW YORK (AP) — The NFL Pro Bowl rosters for next year will be selected in a draft by team captains, with Deion Sanders and Jerry Rice assisting as alumni captains. The NFL will abandon its old AFC vs. NFC format that has been in place since 1971.
The league says fan voting will determine the players in the draft pool. The game will be played Jan. 26 at Aloha Stadium in Honolulu, Hawaii.
Wall gets extension from Wizards
UNDATED (AP) — Point guard John Wall has agreed to a contract extension with the Washington Wizards and two people familiar with the deal say is worth about $80 million over five years.
The people spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because the team's announcement did not reveal financial terms.
Wall was the No. 1 overall pick in the 2010 NBA draft and immediately became the prime building block for a Wizards club that now has missed the playoffs each of the past five seasons.
He has averaged 16.9 points, eight assists, 4.4 rebounds and 1.5 steals for his career.
Rockets' Jones stomps homeless man's leg
PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — Police say Houston Rockets forward Terrence Jones has been arrested in Portland, Ore., and accused of stomping on a homeless man's leg.
Police spokesman Sgt. Pete Simpson says the incident happened early Wednesday outside a downtown nightclub. A sergeant saw the 6-foot-9 Jones walk by a doorway where two homeless men were sleeping and yell "Wake Up!" before lifting his foot and stomping on the leg of one.
The homeless man suffered a minor injury that did not require immediate medical attention.
Jones pleaded not guilty at his arraignment.
TENNIS-U.S.OPEN PRIZE MONEY
Record money at tennis grand slam
WHITE PLAINS, N.Y. (AP) — The 2013 U.S. Open singles champions will earn a record $2.6 million apiece this year.
A player who loses in the first round of singles at Flushing Meadows will make $32,000, a jump of 39 percent from last year's $23,000.
Last year's singles champions, Serena Williams and Andy Murray, won $1.9 million.
Play starts at the U.S. Open on Aug. 26.
BARCELONA, Spain (AP) — Missy Franklin has claimed her third gold medal of the world swimming championships with a victory in the 200-meter freestyle.
Franklin gave up her bid to win eight golds in Barcelona, scratching the 50 back so she could focus on the 200 free. That decision paid off Wednesday night when she touched first in 1 minute, 54.81 seconds.
It was the most significant freestyle win of Franklin's career.
Gomez joins Panthers
SUNRISE, Fla. (AP) — Two-time Stanley Cup champion Scott Gomez is joining the Florida Panthers.
The Panthers says that they agreed to terms with the 33-year old center on a one-year deal. Gomez leads all active U.S.-born NHL players in assists with 530 and points with 701.
Russia to enforce gay activism law
MOSCOW (AP) — Russian Sports Minister Vitaly Mutko says a new law cracking down on gay rights activism will be enforced during the 2014 Olympics in Sochi.
Mutko's statement follows assurances from the International Olympic Committee that neither athletes nor visitors to the games would be subject to discrimination under the law.
The contentious law imposes hefty fines on those providing information about the gay community to minors or holding gay pride rallies. It was signed by President Vladimir Putin last month.