National Sports

LEADING OFF: Stroman coming off WBC MVP; Harvey, Tebow debut

By The Associated Press A look at what's happening all around the majors today: ___ HEAD START Marcus Stroman makes his season debut for Toronto after winning MVP honors with Team USA at the World Baseball Classic last month. Stroman was 1-1 with a 2.35 ERA in three starts for the United ...

Pick 6: New coordinators who could boost incumbent coaches

By RALPH D. RUSSO, AP College Football Writer Hiring a new coordinator can at times be as impactful to a college football program as making a head coaching change. Take Penn State, for example, where head coach James Franklin's hiring of Joe Moorhead last season helped get the Nittany Lions ...

Capitals beat Rangers to clinch Presidents’ Trophy again

By STEPHEN WHYNO, AP Hockey Writer WASHINGTON (AP) — Winning the Presidents' Trophy is becoming old hat for the Washington Capitals, though this time it could be more important than ever. The Capitals beat the New York Rangers 2-0 on Wednesday night to wrap up their second consecutive ...

Lindor slam gives AL champ Indians opening sweep of Rangers

By SCHUYLER DIXON, AP Sports Writer ARLINGTON, Texas (AP) — Francisco Lindor's go-ahead grand slam in the ninth inning off suddenly shaky Texas closer Sam Dyson triggered a litany of firsts for Cleveland's budding star shortstop. And that list of milestones was a lot more fun to talk about ...

Soccer weekend: What to watch in Europe’s main leagues

By The Associated Press What to watch in the leading soccer leagues in Europe this weekend: ___ SPAIN Real Madrid will have the Spanish league lead on the line when it hosts Atletico Madrid in the city derby on Saturday. Madrid will be defending its two-point lead over Barcelona against an ...

2017 NCAA tourney in books, no classic title game this time

By JIM O'CONNELL, AP Basketball Writer GLENDALE, Ariz. (AP) — The 2017 NCAA Tournament started with its shortest player coming through in the clutch and it ended with a less-than-classic championship game. North Carolina's 71-65 victory over Gonzaga in front of more than 76,000 fans ended ...

LEADING OFF: Cubs and Yankees try again, Shoemaker returns

By The Associated Press A look at what's happening all around the majors today: ___ TRY AGAIN The World Series champion Cubs go again after their first win as former Cy Young Award winner Jake Arrieta starts in St. Louis against Adam Wainwright. The Cardinals beat Chicago in the opener at ...

As the NBA season winds down, so many races are undecided

By TIM REYNOLDS, AP Basketball Writer With just over a week left in the NBA regular season, there's still a ton to be decided before the playoff field is set. In the East, four spots remain unclaimed. In the West, two are up for grabs. And while some seedings look wrapped up, none are ...

Fouls, misses make for no flow in March Madness finale

By JIM O'CONNELL, AP Basketball Writer GLENDALE, Ariz. (AP) — The sounds of the NCAA Championship game were whistles and moans. It just never seemed there was a flow to the game that North Carolina won 71-65 on Monday night for its sixth national title. Each team had 22 fouls but it was ...

NHL’s Olympic decision also big news at women’s tournament

By NOAH TRISTER, AP Sports Writer PLYMOUTH, Mich. (AP) — The NHL's announcement that it would not participate in the 2018 Olympics was a newsworthy topic at another big international hockey tournament — the women's world championship. "I think the whole world's following that, obviously," ...

Williams humbly passes Smith, joins elite coaching company

By RALPH D. RUSSO, AP College Sports Writer GLENDALE, Ariz. (AP) — Roy Williams was simply not having it. No matter how many NCAA championships the North Carolina coach wins, no matter what the record book says, Williams will never see himself as measuring up to his former boss, longtime ...

LEADING OFF: Beltran, Encarnacion, Eaton open in new spots

By The Associated Press A look at what's happening all around the majors today: ___ WELCOME A bunch of familiar faces will be in new places for opening day. Among them: Carlos Beltran, Brian McCann and Josh Reddick of the Astros, Edwin Encarnacion for Cleveland, Adam Eaton in Washington, ...

Brandon Jennings: Warriors tried to embarrass Wizards

By MICHAEL WAGAMAN, Associated Press OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) — Washington guard Brandon Jennings accused Golden State of trying to embarrass the Wizards in Sunday night's 139-115 loss. Jennings also didn't back down after shoving JaVale McGee after the Warriors backup center shot a 3-pointer ...

Females are facing an off-ice fight at all levels of hockey

By LARRY LAGE, AP Hockey Writer PLYMOUTH, Mich. (AP) — The best women's hockey players in the U.S. can now make a living playing the sport they love thanks to a landmark agreement with USA Hockey reached after a threat to boycott the world championship. The deal will likely help their ...

New closer, same result: Giants blow lead, lose to D-backs

By BOB BAUM, AP Sports Writer PHOENIX (AP) — Two big swings from Madison Bumgarner were undone by another bullpen meltdown in a wild opener for the San Francisco Giants that looked an awful lot like last season. Chris Owings singled home the winning run and the Arizona Diamondbacks scored ...

Molina, Cardinals add $60M over 3 years through 2020

By JAY COHEN, AP Sports Writer ST. LOUIS (AP) — When it was over, when the numbers were finalized and the contract was ready, Yadier Molina cried. Tears of joy. Molina and the St. Louis Cardinals announced a new deal Sunday that adds $60 million over three seasons through 2020, increasing ...

Cubs, Maddon become first to use no-pitch intentional walk

By The Associated Press ST. LOUIS (AP) — Chicago Cubs manager Joe Maddon became the first manager to call for a no-pitch intentional walk, using the rule that was adopted by Major League Baseball in St. Louis' 4-3 win on Sunday night. Maddon had left hander Mike Montgomery intentionally ...

Big game in Boston: Celtics-Cavs for East No. 1 Wednesday

By BRIAN MAHONEY, AP Basketball Writer NEW YORK (AP) — Big games in Boston have been part of so many NBA spring times, and the Celtics are about to host the next one. Beat Cleveland on Wednesday and the Celtics will take the Eastern Conference lead into the final week of the regular season. ...

Darvish gets his 1st Rangers opener against AL champ Indians

By STEPHEN HAWKINS, AP Sports Writer ARLINGTON, Texas (AP) — Yu Darvish is getting the start he's never had with the Texas Rangers. Darvish will be on the mound on opening day for the Rangers for the first time Monday. The two-time defending AL West champions take on the American League ...

Roberto Perez, Indians agree to $9 million, 4-year contract

CLEVELAND (AP) — Catcher Roberto Perez and the Cleveland Indians have agreed to a $9 million, four-year contract that includes club options for 2021 and 2022. After spending nearly three months on the disabled list following thumb surgery, Perez became a key contributor last season during ...