Update on the latest sportsAP
MLB-AL WILD CARD
Yankees and Red Sox meet at Fenway for wild card game
BOSTON (AP) — The baseball playoffs get under way at Boston’s Fenway Park as the longtime rival Red Sox and New York Yankees face each other in the AL wild-card game. Yankees ace Gerrit Cole is set to start against ex-Yankee Nathan Eovaldi.
The teams both had their high and low points this year before finishing tied at 92-70. The winner will advance to play another division rival, the AL East champion Tampa Bay Rays.
Designated hitter J.D. Martinez was left off the Red Sox roster for their one-game wild-card playoff against the Yankees. The move comes two days after Martinez twisted his ankle running out to the field in a rare defensive appearance. Playing the outfield because Boston finished the regular season in Washington, a National League park where the designated hitter is not used, Martinez slipped on second base while taking his position between innings.
The Yankees added outfielder Greg Allen to their roster, along with Rob Brantly as a third catcher. Left-hander Andrew Heaney and right-hander Brody Koerner were designated for assignment to open roster spots.
Lefty Shane McClanahan to start Game 1 of ALDS for Rays
ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) — Tampa Bay left-hander Shane McClanahan will start Game of 1 of the Rays’ AL Division Series on Thursday night. Rays manager Kevin Cash made the announcement before a team workout on Tuesday.
Rookie Shane Baz will take the mound for Game 2 on Friday night. Depending on bullpen use in the opening two games, Cash said Drew Rasmussen is the “highly likely” Game 3 starter.
Tampa Bay will face the winner of Tuesday night’s wild-card game between the New York Yankees and Boston Red Sox.
Valdez to start Game 2 for Houston
HOUSTON (AP) — Left-hander Framber Valdez will start for the Houston Astros in Game 2 of the AL Division Series against the Chicago White Sox.
Manager Dusty Baker announced the decision Tuesday but did not reveal his rotation past Game 2. He previously said Lance McCullers Jr. will start in the series opener Thursday.
Valdez won a career-high 11 games this season with 125 strikeouts, and his 3.14 ERA in 22 starts was his best since his rookie season in 2018. The 27-year-old missed the first 49 games this season after breaking his left index finger in his first start of spring training.
Joe West, Mark Carlson plate umpires for wild-card games
UNDATED (AP) — Umpire Joe West will call balls and strikes for the NL wild-card game and Mark Carlson will be the home plate umpire for the AL wild-card game. Ted Barrett, Tom Hallion, Sam Holbrook and Alfonso Marquez will be crew chiefs for the Division Series.
In May, West broke Bill Klem’s record for major league games umpired. He will be the crew chief for Wednesday night’s NL game between the defending champion Los Angeles Dodgers and St. Louis Cardinals. He will be joined by Alan Porter at first, Laz Diaz at second, Jim Wolf at third, Chris Segal in left and Ramon De Jesus in right.
Playoff payrolls: 2 missing Dodgers nearly total Rays’ money
UNDATED (AP) — Two missing Los Angeles Dodgers pitchers earn nearly as much as the entire Tampa Bay Rays’ major league roster heading into the playoffs.
The defending champion Dodgers enter the postseason with more than three times the payroll of the Rays, the team they beat in last year’s World Series. The Dodgers had a major league-high $260.9 million payroll on Aug. 31. AL East champion Tampa Bay was 26th at $76.6 million. That is just $7.6 million more than earned this year by Trevor Bauer and Clayton Kershaw, both unavailable to the Dodgers this week.
Bauer is on paid administrative leave since July 2 under MLB’s joint domestic violence and sexual assault policy. Kershaw went on the injured list last weekend with left forearm discomfort.
Escobar stays with Nationals
WASHINGTON (AP) — Shortstop Alcides Escobar has agreed to a one-year, $1 million contract to stay with the Washington Nationals. The team announced the deal Tuesday.
Escobar will turn 35 in December. He batted .288 with 21 doubles, two triples, four homers and 28 RBIs in 75 games with the Nationals after signing with the club in July. He hadn’t been in the major leagues since 2018 before joining Washington.
Escobar has a career average of .259 with 245 doubles and 470 RBIs over a total of 12 seasons in the majors with three clubs. He was an AL All-Star for the Kansas City Royals in 2015.
Elsewhere in the majors:
— The Colorado Rockies have agreed to deals with right-hander Antonio Senzatela and first-baseman C.J. Cron. Senzatela’s $50.5 million, five-year contract includes a club option for 2027. Cron will return on a $14.5 million, two-year deal. Senzatela is coming off a season in which he made 28 starts and finished with a 4-10 record. He posted a 4.42 ERA and struck out 105. Cron hit .281 with a team-leading 28 homers after signing a free-agent deal last February. His three grand slams this season were the most in franchise history.
Irving misses 1st practice after Nets return to New York
NEW YORK (AP) — Kyrie Irving didn’t practice with the Brooklyn Nets, again remaining away from the team amid questions about his availability to play in New York because of the city’s vaccine mandate.
Coach Steve Nash had no further update about the status of his All-Star guard but said the team supports him.
Irving hasn’t said if he has been vaccinated against COVID-19. He asked for privacy when pressed about his status during the team’s media day on Sept. 27. He wasn’t with his teammates that day at Barclays Center, instead appearing via Zoom.
New York has a mandate requiring COVID-19 vaccinations for athletes who play in or practice in the city.
Veteran Pau Gasol announces retirement from basketball
MADRID (AP) — Pau Gasol has announced his retirement from basketball to put an end to a career of more than two decades that earned him two NBA titles and a world championship gold with Spain’s national team.
The 41-year-old Gasol had already announced his farewell from international basketball in August after Spain lost to the United States in the quarterfinals of the Tokyo Olympics. Gasol had been playing with Spanish club Barcelona since February. His career had stalled before that because a left-foot stress fracture that lingered and kept him from playing for nearly two years.
Gasol won his two NBA titles with the Los Angeles Lakers.
Chiefs adding wide receiver Josh Gordon to 53-man roster
KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — The Kansas City Chiefs are adding Josh Gordon to their 53-man roster and the wide receiver is expected to play in Sunday night’s AFC title game rematch against the Buffalo Bills.
The Chiefs signed Gordon to the practice squad last week with the assumption that he would join the active roster when he learned enough of the playbook. He had just been reinstated by the NFL following his sixth suspension for violations of NFL policies. The Chiefs hope his size and athleticism provide another option alongside Tyreek Hill and Travis Kelce in their passing offense.
Jaguars owner reprimands coach
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (AP) — Jacksonville Jaguars owner Shad Khan has publicly reprimanded Urban Meyer for what he called the coach’s “inexcusable” behavior at an Ohio bar over the weekend.
A video that surfaced Saturday night shows a young woman dancing close to Meyer’s lap as he sits on a bar stool. Another video appears to show Meyer touching the woman’s behind.
Khan says he addressed the matter with Meyer but wouldn’t reveal specifics of the conversation. Meyer apologized Monday to his family, team and Khan. Khan says he believes Meyer’s remorse was sincere and that it’s up to the first-year head coach to “regain our trust and respect.”
AP source: Dolphins send Jakeem Grant to Bears for 2023 pick
MIAMI GARDENS, Fla. (AP) — A person with knowledge of the deal says the Miami Dolphins have traded wide receiver and returner Jakeem Grant to the Chicago Bears.
Grant is going to the Bears in exchange for a sixth-round pick in the 2023 draft, according to the person who spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because the trade has not been announced.
Grant had primarily been a returner for the Dolphins this season. He had only two catches for minus-7 yards in the season’s first four games.
Maryland’s Demus out for the season with knee injury
COLLEGE PARK, Md. (AP) — Maryland receiver Dontay Demus is expected to miss the rest of the season with a knee injury. It’s a blow to one of the Big Ten’s top passing offenses. Coach Michael Locksley updated Demus’ status Tuesday.
Demus leads the Big Ten with 507 yards receiving on the season, but he was injured returning a kickoff in Friday’s 51-14 loss to Iowa.
The Terrapins play at No. 7 Ohio State on Saturday. Maryland does have good depth at receiver. Rakim Jarrett and Jeshaun Jones also rank in the top 25 in the Big Ten in yards receiving.
NCAA waiver will help football teams replace transfers
UNDATED (AP) — The NCAA Division I Council has approved a one-year waiver that will allow football teams to sign up to seven players to replace those that leave the program. The move is intended to address a growing number of transfers.
Current NCAA rules state a team can sign no more than 25 players to a scholarship in any year. But more players are switching teams and a bonus year of eligibility was granted to athletes who competed during the pandemic last year. That has coaches worried they will not be able to replenish their rosters.
The ‘Dinah’ leaving desert as LPGA major gets new sponsor
UNDATED (AP) — The LPGA major with the most tradition is leaving the California desert.
The LPGA says Chevron has agreed to a six-year deal as title sponsor of the event currently known as the ANA Inspiration. Chevron takes over starting in 2023 and plans to move the tournament near company headquarters in Houston.
Next April will be the end of 40 years of the only women’s major played on the same course at Mission Hills in Rancho Mirage, California. That will be the end of the famous leap into “Poppie’s Pond” for the winner. But the move means a better date, network television and a big bump in prize money to $5 million.