Update on the latest in sports:
Braves try to catch Phillies
WASHINGTON (AP) – The Braves and Nationals open a four-game series with a doubleheader today. Atlanta is right on Philadelphia’s heals in the NL East race, while Washington is five games back of the Braves. Atlanta’s Max Fried faces Jefry Rodriguez in the opener, and Nationals ace Max Scherzer opposes Sean Newcomb in the nightcap.
Elsewhere in the majors
– Diamondbacks pitcher Zack Greinke is coming off his first loss in nine starts heading into tonight’s game against the Phillies after giving up two runs in six innings of a loss to the San Francisco Giants. On the mound for Phillies is Nick Pivetta, who allowed six runs in 2 2/3 innings in his only career start against Arizona.
– Madison Bumgarner needs one victory for fourth place on the San Francisco wins list, and he’s looking to pick up that win this afternoon against Houston. He has won his last four starts against the Astros with a 1.20 ERA. Dallas Keuchel (KY’-kul) starts for Houston.
– Struggling former AL Cy Young Award winners Bartolo Colon and Felix Hernandez will be on the mound when the Rangers host the Mariners in the middle game of their three-game series. The last victory for both hefty right-handers came on June 30. Colon, the 45-year-old hurler who was the 2005 Cy Young winner while with the Angels, has lost five consecutive starts for Texas since his 246th career win that matched Dennis Martinez for the most by a player born in Latin America. The 32-year-old Hernandez, who won the Cy Young with the Mariners in 2010, is 0-3 with a 7.64 ERA his last four starts.
– Yankees left-hander CC Sabathia and White Sox right-hander Reynaldo Lopez face off tonight. The 38-year-old Sabathia is 19-6 with a 3.78 ERA in 35 career starts versus the White Sox. Lopez is winless in his last five starts, but he pitched five-hit ball into the eighth inning in a no-decision against Kansas City on Thursday.
– Pittsburgh’s Jameson Taillon and Colorado’s Chad Bettis will pitch in a game featuring two starters bouncing back from testicular cancer. Bettis underwent surgery in November 2016 for testicular cancer and continued cancer treatments through that spring and into last season. So when Taillon had surgery to treat testicular cancer on May 8, 2017, he had an instant line of support. Taillon spoke a few times with Bettis during his treatment, calling their exchanges “comforting.”
– Mike Trout is likely to sit out the Angels’ game against Detroit because of a sore right wrist, depriving Los Angeles’ fans of what’s become an annual treat: Seeing Trout do incredible things on his birthday. Trout will turn 27 on Tuesday, and he has a history of throwing celebrations for himself. He has homered on his birthday four times in his first six full big-league seasons.
In other action tonight:
Boston at Toronto
Baltimore at Tampa Bay
Minnesota at Cleveland
Cincinnati at N.Y. Mets
St. Louis at Miami
San Diego at Milwaukee
Chicago Cubs at Kansas City
L.A. Dodgers at Oakland
Cano continues rehab assignment
SEATTLE (AP) – Robinson Cano has begun his minor league rehab assignment ahead of his return from an 80-game suspension for violating baseball’s joint drug agreement. Cano played Monday for Triple-A Tacoma and is scheduled to play there again Tuesday. After that, he may play some games for Class A Everett later in the week. Cano is eligible to rejoin Seattle on Aug. 14. When he does, he’s expected to play first, second and third base.
Bolt is trying soccer
SYDNEY (AP) – Usain Bolt is quickly closing in on a professional soccer career.
The Jamaican track star has negotiated an “indefinite training period” with Central Coast Mariners in Australia’s A-League.
The eight-time Olympic gold medalist and the 100- and 200-meter world record holder has been chasing another career ambition since quitting quit track and field.
Williams shares postpartum struggles on social media
UNDATED (AP) – Serena Williams says she’s been struggling with postpartum emotions and wants other new moms to know they are “totally normal.”
The 23-time Grand Slam champion suffered the most lopsided defeat of her career, a 6-1, 6-0 loss to Johanna Konta in San Jose, California, last Tuesday. She then withdrew from this week’s Rogers Cup in Montreal, citing personal reasons.
In an Instagram post, she write: “Last week was not easy for me. Not only was I accepting some tough personal stuff, but I just was in a funk. Mostly, I felt like I was not a good mom.”
The 36-year-old Williams was the runner-up at Wimbledon last month. That was just her fourth tournament since returning to the tour after having a baby in September and dealing with a health scare related to blood clots.