Update on the latest sports:
US Open begins on old course with a new look
SOUTHAMPTON, N.Y. (AP) – The U.S. Open has begun on a century-old New York golf course with a new look.
Harold Varner hit the opening tee shot on a gorgeous Thursday morning at Shinnecock Hills, using a fairway metal to hit a fairway that was some 60 yards wide in the landing zone. He still watched it anxiously, only because a marshal unaware the U.S. Open had started ambled across the fairway, and broke into a sprint when he heard the ball land near him.
Scott Piercy and Matthieu Pavon of France also found the short grass – Piercy in the first fairway, Pavon so far right that it cleared the knee-high fescue and landed on the ninth hole.
The fairways are 15 yards wider on average than the 2004 U.S. Open at Shinnecock.
Chris Sale dominates, Red Sox beat Orioles 5-1
BALTIMORE (AP) – Chris Sale took a two-hitter into the seventh inning before being ejected, and the Boston Red Sox completed a three-game sweep of the Baltimore Orioles with a 5-1 victory Wednesday.
After issuing two walks to open the seventh in a 5-0 game, Sale (6-4) was lifted by manager Alex Cora. As he was making his way to the dugout, the left-hander yelled at plate umpire Brian Knight and was promptly ejected.
Sale struck out nine, allowed one run and gave up two hits in ending a run of three straight losing starts. Mookie Betts and J.D. Martinez homered for the Red Sox, who are 9-1 against the Orioles this season. Baltimore has lost seven straight and 14 of 16.
Elsewhere in the major leagues:
– Enrique Hernandez dodged home on a wild throw by pitcher Matt Bush in the 11th inning and, hours after a hard collision at the plate led to a bench-clearing incident and a pair of ejections. The Los Angeles Dodgers edged the Texas Rangers 3-2 on Wednesday night.
– Evan Gattis hit two home runs, including the first of back-to-back shots with Marwin Gonzalez during a seven-run second inning, and the streaking Houston Astros beat the Oakland Athletics 13-5 for their seventh straight win. Jake Marisnick also homered, Carlos Correa had a two-run triple and Yuli Gurriel had three hits and three RBIs to help Gerrit Cole win his sixth straight decision. The defending World Series champs moved a season-high 19 games over .500.
– Teenage rookie Juan Soto homered twice and drove in four runs, becoming the youngest player in 29 years to go deep in a regular-season game at Yankee Stadium, and the Washington Nationals beat New York 5-4. Soto showed exactly why he was rated one of baseball’s best prospects. The 19-year-old outfielder lofted a three-run homer into the left-field corner off Sonny Gray in the fourth inning to give Washington a 4-3 lead. Soto then launched a titanic shot to right-center in the seventh against Chasen Shreve, putting the Nationals back in front 5-4.
– Dylan Covey carried a shutout into the eighth inning, continuing his impressive June and helping the Chicago White Sox beat Trevor Bauer and the Cleveland Indians 3-2 on Wednesday night. Covey allowed 10 hits – all singles – and walked none. The 26-year-old right-hander, who was acquired from Oakland in the 2016 Rule 5 draft, improved to 3-0 with a 1.53 ERA in five starts since he was recalled from Triple-A Charlotte last month.
– Mike Soroka did not allow a hit until the seventh inning, Freddie Freeman homered and drove in both runs, and the Atlanta Braves beat the New York Mets 2-0 on Wednesday. Soroka, the youngest pitcher in the major leagues and one of baseball’s top prospects, returned from a right shoulder strain that sidelined him since May 17 to outpitch NL ERA leader Jacob deGrom in a game that lasted only 2 hours, 12 minutes. The Mets have lost 10 of their past 11 and 17 of their past 21.
– Lorenzo Cain homered and Jhoulys Chacin combined with three relievers on a six-hitter to give the Milwaukee Brewers their second straight shutout of the Chicago Cubs, 1-0. Chacin allowed four hits in six innings, striking out seven and walking four to win his sixth consecutive decision. Jeremy Jeffress pitched the seventh, Josh Hader struck out the side in the eighth and Cory Knebel finished with a perfect ninth for his sixth save.
– Jordy Mercer homered and had three RBIs, Jameson Taillon pitched seven effective innings and the Pittsburgh Pirates avoided a sweep with a 5-4 victory over the Arizona Diamondbacks. The Pirates blew a five-run lead in the opener and were knocked for 13 runs in the second game.
– Mitch Haniger hit a two-run home run in the bottom of the ninth inning to give the Seattle Mariners an 8-6 victory and sweep of the three-game series over the Los Angeles Angels. After Jean Segura singled to center off reliever Oliver Drake (0-1), Haniger launched his 16th homer of the season over the left-field wall to finish off the sweep. Nelson Cruz and Ryon Healy also homered for Seattle, and Healy’s upper-deck shot in the eighth inning tied the game at 6-6.
– Matt Duffy’s RBI single with two outs in the ninth drove in the game’s only run in the Tampa Bay Rays’ 1-0 win over the Toronto Blue Jays. Duffy drove in Mallex Smith, who doubled with one out and moved to third base on a ground ball. Diego Castillo got his first major league win after pitching two innings of relief.
– Ian Desmond hit a two-run homer in a five-run fourth inning, Tyler Anderson pitched seven strong innings and the Colorado Rockies routed the Philadelphia Phillies 7-2 on Wednesday night to end a five-game losing streak. Trevor Story added three hits and drove in two for the Rockies, who had dropped nine of 11 while falling from first place to fourth in the NL West.
– Victor Reyes’s RBI single keyed a four-run eighth inning and the Detroit Tigers rallied to beat the Minnesota Twins 5-2 on Wednesday night. The Tigers, playing their first game since Miguel Cabrera’s season-ending biceps injury, won for just the fourth time in 11 games.
– Tyler Mahle allowed three hits while pitching into the seventh, Adam Duvall hit a ninth-inning grand slam and the Cincinnati Reds beat the skidding Kansas City Royals 7-0 on Wednesday night. Mahle allowed only one runner to touch second base in 6 1/3 innings, matching his career longest start. He is 2-0 in June, allowing two earned runs and 14 hits in 16 1/3 innings.
– Brian Anderson hit a game-ending sacrifice fly in the ninth inning to lift the Miami Marlins over the San Francisco Giants 5-4 Wednesday night. J.T. Realmuto had two hits and scored twice for the Marlins, who have won three straight for the first time since winning four in a row April 28-May 1.
– Eric Lauer carried a shutout into the sixth inning, Manuel Margot had three hits and the San Diego Padres beat the St. Louis Cardinals 4-2 Wednesday night to win their fifth straight series. Freddy Galvis drove in two first-inning runs for San Diego, which has won five of seven. The Padres hadn’t won five consecutive series since 2010.
Steinbrenner says Yankees exploring rotation upgrade
UNDATED (AP) – Hal Steinbrenner says his New York Yankees may need a starting pitching upgrade if they’re going to reach their first World Series since 2009.
Steinbrenner, the Yankees managing general partner, said Wednesday the club will explore the trade market for an arm, especially considering the recent loss of left-hander Jordan Montgomery, who had season-ending Tommy John surgery on June 7.
The Yankees entered Wednesday with the best record in baseball, narrowly ahead of AL East rival Boston. The club has space to acquire an impact player and still remain under the $197 million luxury-tax threshold, a goal the team has stated several times.
In other MLB news:
– Mets right-hander Noah Syndergaard has been prescribed more rest after getting a second opinion on a strained ligament in his index finger. Manager Mickey Callaway said Syndergaard’s right finger is “tender to the touch.” Syndergaard, on the disabled list retroactive to May 26, was examined Tuesday in New York. There is no immediate timetable for his return.
– A jury has ruled in favor of the Boston Red Sox in a lawsuit brought by a woman who says she sustained severe facial injuries when she was struck by a foul ball at Fenway Park. The jury Wednesday found that the team and principal owner John Henry were not negligent. Stephanie Taubin, of Brookline, sued for $9.5 million, saying she suffered facial fractures and neurological damage from a foul ball in June 2014 while sitting in luxury seats above and behind home plate unprotected by glass or netting.
Trotz, Capitals begin discussing contract extension
ARLINGTON, Va. (AP) – Barry Trotz and the Washington Capitals have begun discussing a contract extension that would keep the pending free agent coach around for next season and beyond after winning the Stanley Cup.
Trotz and general manager Brian MacLellan met Wednesday to talk about a new deal. MacLellan says he’ll meet with ownership over the next week and that he doesn’t believe either side feels pressure to get a deal done given Trotz’s contract expires June 30.
AP source: Cowboys make Zack Martin NFL’s highest-paid guard
FRISCO, Texas (AP) – A person with direct knowledge of the deal says the Dallas Cowboys and Zack Martin have agreed to terms on an $84 million, six-year contract extension. The deal will make the two-time All-Pro the highest-paid guard in the NFL.
The agreement includes $40 million guaranteed money and will be tacked on to the final year of his rookie contract, the person told The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because the deal hasn’t been announced. Martin will be under contract through 2024.
The $14 million average on the new contract surpasses the $13.3 million average on the $66.5 million, five-year contract signed by Jacksonville’s Andrew Norwell in March.
COLLEGE FOOTBALL-MARYLAND-PLAYER DEATH
Terps OL McNair dies after collapsing at workout 2 weeks ago
COLLEGE PARK, Md. (AP) – A University of Maryland football player hospitalized after an organized team workout two weeks ago has died.
Maryland executive athletic director Damon Evans said Jordan McNair was hospitalized May 29 and died Wednesday. He was 19.
McNair was a 6-foot-4, 325-pound offensive lineman preparing for his sophomore season. A graduate of McDonogh High School, McNair played one game last season.
Hall of Famer and Olympic gold medalist Anne Donovan dies
UNDATED (AP) – Anne Donovan, the Basketball Hall of Famer who won a national championship at Old Dominion, two Olympic gold medals in the 1980s and coached the U.S. to gold in 2008, died Wednesday of heart failure. She was 56.
Donovan’s family confirmed the death in a statement.
Donovan was at the Women’s Basketball Hall of Fame in Knoxville, Tennessee, last weekend.
She was inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in 1995, was part of the inaugural class of the Women’s Basketball Hall of Fame in 1999 and was inducted in the FIBA Hall of Fame in 2015.
Strikeouts on upswing entering College World Series
OMAHA, Neb. (AP) – Strikeout numbers are the highest on record in college baseball with the College World Series set to begin later this week.
The 297 Division I teams have combined to average 7.88 strikeouts per nine innings this season. That is the highest figure in NCAA records dating to 1970 and a huge 21.6 percent increase since 2014.
Pitching staffs for forty-one teams – including CWS participants North Carolina, Mississippi State and Arkansas – average at least nine strikeouts per nine innings. That’s up from 16 teams in 2016 and from just one in 2012.
Six pitchers in the CWS average 10 or more strikeouts per nine innings, led by Oregon State’s Kevin Abel and Luke Heimlich.
What’s happening in the college game mirrors the major leagues, where strikeouts are on track to set a record for the 11th straight year.