Update on the latest in sports:


Associated Press

Posted on September 19, 2013 at 6:00 AM

Updated Thursday, Sep 19 at 6:06 AM


Rays rally twice to beat Rangers...Cardinals pad lead

UNDATED (AP) — The Tampa Bay Rays trailed 2-0 in the sixth and 3-2 in the 11th on Wednesday before moving one game ahead of Texas for the first American League wild-card berth.

Desmond Jennings hit an RBI single in the bottom of the 12th to complete the Rays' 4-3 win over the Rangers. Adrian Beltre's RBI single put the Rangers ahead 3-2 in extra innings, but David DeJesus prolonged the game with a run-scoring single and Jennings supplied the walkoff hit.

Sean Rodriguez hit a two-run homer for the Rays, who've taken two of the first three in the four-game series.

The Rangers remain a half-game ahead of Cleveland for the final wild-card slot.

Kansas City is within 2 ½ games of the final AL wild-card spot after Salvador Perez hit a two-run double and Alcides (al-SEE'-dehs) Escobar added a two-run single in the Royals' 7-2 win over the Indians. Escobar also scored on a double-steal for the Royals, who got their other runs on a wild pitch and a bases-loaded walk.

Baltimore sits just a game behind the Rangers following a 5-3, 12-inning triumph at Boston. Chris Davis poked a tiebreaking, two-run single after Matt Wieters (WEE'-turz) drove in the Orioles' first three runs with a single and a double.

Vernon Wells doubled home a pair to cap the Yankees' four-run eighth in a 4-3 win at Toronto, which puts New York within 2 ½ games of the final wild-card berth. The Blue Jays led 3-0 and blanked the Yankees in the first 16 innings of the series until Robinson Cano (kuh-NOH') broke up J.A. Happ's shutout bid.

The St. Louis Cardinals enjoy a two-game lead in the NL Central after beating Colorado for the second straight night.

Adam Wainwright gave up a pair of first-inning runs but pitched into the eighth inning for his 17th victory as the Redbirds topped the Rockies 4-3. Wainwright also went 3-for-3 with an RBI double and the tiebreaking single as St. Louis cut its magic number for clinching a playoff berth to three.

Matt Carpenter and Yadier (YAH'-dee-ehr) Molina each went 2-for-4 with an RBI for the Cards.

The Pirates blew a 2-1 lead in the ninth inning of a 3-2 loss to San Diego. Mark Melancon (meh-LAHN'-sehn) was one out from saving a 2-1 win for Charlie Morton until Jedd Gyorko (JUR'-koh) and Chase Headley hit consecutive RBI singles. The Padres' rally came two innings after Andrew McCutchen put the Bucs ahead with a two-run homer.

Morton allowed just one run and two hits in eight innings for the Pirates, who will try to avoid a four-game sweep when they host the series finale on Thursday.

Cincinnati remains 2 ½ games behind the Cardinals after the Reds scored twice in the 13th inning to beat Houston 6-5. Jay Bruce capped his three-RBI night by hitting the tiebreaking, two-run double in extra innings. Billy Hamilton also had a productive game, going 3-for-4 with an RBI, two runs scored and four stolen bases as the Reds moved 5 ½ games ahead of Washington for the final NL wild-card berth.

Also in the majors, the Dodgers had a chance to clinch the NL West until second-place Arizona scored five times in the eighth inning of a 9-4 rout of Los Angeles. Adam Eaton had three RBIs, including a two-run single that put the Diamondbacks ahead 9-3 in the eighth. Yasiel Puig (YAH'-see-ul pweeg) was 3-for-4 with a solo homer for the Dodgers, whose magic number remains two.

Josh Hamilton belted a two-run homer in the ninth and added the tiebreaking, sacrifice fly in the 11th to lift the Angels past Oakland, 5-4. Hamilton's three RBIs accounted for all the scoring after Coco Crisp and Yoenis (yoh-EH'-nihs SEHS'-peh-dehs) hit two-run homers in the third to put the Athletics ahead 4-2. Mike Trout also hit a two-run homer against the A's, whose magic number to win the AL West is five after the Rangers' loss to Tampa Bay.

Atlanta's magic number to wrap up the NL East is two after Dan Uggla (UG'-lah) and Justin Upton homered in the sixth inning to put the Braves ahead to stay in a 5-2 win at Washington. The Braves' bullpen came through with 4 1/3 scoreless innings after starter Alex Wood allowed a pair of unearned runs in the fifth.

Hisashi Iwakuma (ih-wah-KOO'-mah) allowed four hits in eight innings as Seattle blanked Detroit 8-0. Justin Smoak hit a solo homer and had two RBIs, while Michael Saunders added a pair of RBI doubles.

The Mets scored four times in the bottom of the ninth to pull out a 5-4 win over San Francisco. Josh Satin capped the rally with a two-run, walkoff single with two outs off Sergio Romo.

Giancarlo Stanton hit a game-tying, two-run homer in the sixth inning before Ed Lucas provided the go-ahead, solo shot in the 10th inning of Miami's 4-3 win at Philadelphia. Steve Cishek (SEE'-shehk) had the bases loaded with one man out in the bottom of the 10th before saving the victory.

Scott Diamond pitched into the seventh inning to pick up his first win since June 20 as Minnesota topped the White Sox 4-3. Diamond had been 0-5 with a 6.20 ERA in his eight previous starts.

Sean Halton belted a grand slam during a five-run first that highlighted Milwaukee's 7-0 shutout of the Chicago Cubs. Winning pitcher Tyler Thornburg allowed two hits in six scoreless innings.


Former heavyweight champ dies

LAS VEGAS (AP) — Former heavyweight champion Ken Norton has died at age 70.

A friend of the fighter says Norton had been in poor health for the last several years after suffering a series of strokes.

Norton had three memorable fights against Muhammad Ali, winning the first while breaking his jaw in 1973. Ali won the rematch months later, then took the third in a controversial split decision in 1976.

Norton would come back the next year to win a heavyweight title eliminator and was declared champion by the World Boxing Council. But he lost a bruising 15-round fight to Larry Holmes in 1978 and would never be champion again.

Norton finished with a record of 42-7-1 and 33 knockouts.


Colts and Broncos lose players

UNDATED (AP) — The Cleveland Browns are making changes at running back, trading Trent Richardson to the Indianapolis Colts for a first-round pick in next year's draft. Richardson has struggled with injuries since being selected third overall in last year's draft following a standout career at Alabama.

The Browns plan to bring in running back Willis McGahee (mih-GAY'-hee) for a physical.

Elsewhere in league injury news;

— The season is over for Broncos three-time All Pro left tackle Ryan Clady (KLAY'-dee). He'll have season-ending surgery after suffering a foot injury in Sunday's win over the Giants.

— Larry Fitzgerald sat out practice with his ailing right hamstring on Wednesday, and his status is uncertain for the Arizona Cardinals' game Sunday at New Orleans. Coach Bruce Arians doesn't want the injury to linger, and there was a good possibility Fitzgerald would not attempt to practice until Friday. The seven-time Pro Bowl wide receiver has missed only four games in his nine-plus NFL seasons.

— Colts tight end Dwayne Allen will miss the rest of the season with a hip injury. Allen caught a touchdown pass in the season-opening win against Oakland, but was inactive for last Sunday's loss to the Miami Dolphins.

— The Lions held running back Reggie Bush out of Wednesday's practice due to an injured left knee. His status for Sunday's game with Washington is up in the air.

— Browns third-string quarterback Brian Hoyer will get the start Sunday against Minnesota. He replaces Brandon Weeden, who's out with a thumb injury. Hoyer leap-frogged backup Jason Campbell, who relieved Weeden when he was injury Sunday against Baltimore.

— James Starks will get the start at running back Sunday for the Packers against the Bengals with rookie Eddie Lacy recovering from a concussion. Starks ran for a career-best 132 yards last weekend against the Redskins.


Players fined for hits

UNDATED (AP) — The NFL has fined Titans safety Bernard Pollard $42,000 for his hit on Texans wide receiver Andre Johnson Sunday. The NFL says Pollard was fined for hitting a defenseless receiver in the head or neck area with his shoulder.

The league has lifted Tampa Bay safety Dashon Goldson's suspension and fined him $100,000 instead for his hit on Darren Sproles of New Orleans. Goldson had been suspended one game without pay for flagrant and repeat violations of NFL safety rules prohibiting hits to the head and neck area of defenseless players. He will now be allowed to play Sunday against New England.


School supports coach

UNDATED (AP) — Nebraska Chancellor Harvey Perlman and athletic director Shawn Eichorst say they believe football coach Bo Pelini is sincere in his apology for a profane rant against fans two years ago. Both Perlman and Eichorst say the university is ready to put the matter to rest.

The joint statement said former athletic director Tom Osborne was made aware of the recording more than a year ago and addressed the matter with Pelini at the time.


Two Wizards big men injured

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Washington Wizards have a couple of big men on the shelf for the time being. The club says forward Chris Singleton will be sidelined about six to eight weeks with a broken bone in his left foot. He is scheduled for outpatient surgery to repair a fracture. The team says the injury occurred during a voluntary workout on Tuesday.

Center Emeka Okafor (eh-MEE'-kuh OH'-kuh-for) is also out indefinitely with a herniated disc. The Wizards say that Okafor's injury was diagnosed by an MRI after he experienced discomfort in his neck.