Wednesday, December 4, 2013
MLB-HOT STOVE LEAGUE
Yankees close to agreement with Ellsbury
UNDATED (AP) — The New York Yankees have added speed to their lineup while replacing another former Gold Glove center fielder.
A person familiar with the negotiations tells The Associated Press the New York Yankees have reached an agreement with Jacoby Ellsbury on a seven-year contract worth about $153 million. The person said Ellsbury was to take a physical in New York today, and a second person familiar with the talks says the two sides haven't finalized the deal.
Ellsbury's deal includes a $21 million option for the 2021 season, with a $5 million buyout. If the option is exercised, the deal would be worth $169 million over eight years.
Ellsbury hit .298 with 31 doubles, 53 RBIs and a league-high 52 stolen bases for Boston last season. He's a lifetime .297 hitter with 241 steals, one Gold Glove and one All-Star appearance since breaking into the majors with the 2007 Red Sox.
News of the negotiations broke after the Yanks and catcher Brian McCann finalized their five-year, $85 million contract.
The Oakland Athletics front office has been very busy since Monday.
The A's have worked out separate trades with the Rangers and Padres shortly after picking up closer Jim Johnson from Baltimore. The Athletics are getting outfielder Craig Gentry and pitcher Josh Lindblom from the Rangers for outfielder Michael Choice and minor league infielder Chris Bostick. Oakland also acquired right-handed reliever Luke Gregerson from the San Diego Padres for outfielder Seth Smith.
Johnson was acquired late Monday night, for infielder Jemile Weeks and a player to be named, hours after the A's signed free-agent lefty starter Scott Kazmir to a two-year package.
The Reds, Rays and Diamondbacks have pulled off a three-team trade. The Rays are getting catcher Ryan Hanigan from the Reds and reliever Heath Bell from the Diamondbacks, while Arizona gets minor league pitcher Justin Choate and a player to be named later from Tampa Bay. The Reds are getting left-hander David Holmberg from the D-Backs for their part in the deal. The deal was announced after Hanigan agreed to a three-year, $10.75 million dollar deal that runs through the 2016 season.
Also in the majors:
— A person with knowledge of the negotiations tells the AP that free-agent catcher A.J. Pierzynski (peer-ZIN'-skee) has agreed to a one-year contract with the Boston Red Sox, pending a physical. Pierzynski hit .272 with 17 homers and 70 RBIs for Texas last season.
— With Pierzynski going to Boston, catcher Jarrod Saltalamacchia (sahl-tah-lah-MAH'-kee-uh) appears headed to Miami. A person familiar with discussions says the Marlins have worked out a three-year, $21 million contract with Saltalamacchia, who hit a career-high .273 with 14 homers and 65 RBIs for the Red Sox this year.
— The Houston Astros have acquired outfielder Dexter Fowler from the Colorado Rockies for outfielder Brandon Barnes and right-hander Jordan Lyles. Houston will also receive a player to be named later. The 27-year-old Fowler hit .263 with 18 doubles, 42 RBIs and 19 stolen bases in 119 games last season.
— The Twins and pitcher Ricky Nolasco have finalized their four-year, $49 million contract. Nolasco made 33 starts for the Marlins and Dodgers last season going 13-11 with a 3.70 earned run average.
— The Atlanta Braves have announced one-year contract agreements with pitcher Jonny Venters and infielder Ramiro Pena.
— Tony Clark has become the first former big leaguer to lead the baseball players' union, pending a vote by the general membership. The MLBPA's executive board voted unanimously Tuesday to appoint Clark to replace Michael Weiner (WEE'-nur), who died Nov. 22 of brain cancer.
Eight straight for Thunder...Heat win streak ends
UNDATED (AP) — The Oklahoma City Thunder blew most of a 17-point, fourth-quarter lead before notching their eighth straight win.
Kevin Durant had game highs of 27 points and 11 rebounds as the Thunder got past the Kings 97-95 in Sacramento. Serge Ibaka (ih-BAH'-kah) added 13 points and nine boards for the Thunder, who led 82-65 with 11 minutes left before the Kings scored the next 11 points to make things interesting.
Russell Westbrook finished with 15 points, eight rebounds and seven assists to help the Thunder improve to 13-3
Oklahoma City owns the NBA's longest current winning streak, thanks to some help from the Pistons.
Miami's 10-game winning streak has ended with a 107-97 setback against visiting Detroit as Kyle Singler scored 18 points to lead seven Pistons in double figures. Andre Drummond had 18 rebounds for the Pistons, who led by 18 and never trailed in the final 47 minutes.
LeBron James and Michael Beasley each had 23 points for the Heat, who were without guard Dwayne (dwayn) Wade due to a sore knee.
The best comeback of the night was provided by Golden State, which trailed by 25 midway through the third quarter before pulling out a 112-103 win against Toronto. The Raptors still owned a comfortable 92-77 lead in the fourth until the Warriors outscored them 34-11 the rest of the way.
Stephen Curry scored 14 of his 27 points in the final period, including back-to-back 3-pointers to put the Warriors ahead for the first time since the two-minute mark of the game. Curry also had 10 assists, while Klay Thompson added 22 points.
Also in the NBA:
— Timofey Mozgov had 17 points and a career-high 20 rebounds off the bench as Denver rolled to its seventh straight win, ripping the Nets 111-87 in Brooklyn. Kenneth Faried and Jordan Hamilton each added 15 points for the Nuggets, who got 57 points from their bench just one game after their reserves came up with 72 points in Toronto.
— Michael Carter-Williams had a triple-double of 27 points, 12 rebounds and 10 assists as Philadelphia outlasted Orlando 126-125 in double-overtime. Thaddeus Young chipped in 25 points and 12 boards, while Evan Turner added 24 points to help the 76ers overcome Arron Afflalo's (af-LAH'-lohz) 43 points.
— Jon Leuer scored a career-high 23 points on 10 of 13 shooting as Memphis hammered Phoenix 110-91. Ed Davis added 21 points and 12 rebounds, while Mike Conley added 18 points and 14 assists in the Grizzlies' first victory in their last five home games.
— Dirk Nowitzki dropped in 24 points and Monta (MAHN'-tay) Ellis added 22 as Dallas topped Charlotte 89-82. The Mavericks trailed by seven before outscoring the Bobcats 29-15 in the final period.
— Jordan Crawford scored 25 points and Jeff Green had 18 in Boston's 108-100 win against Milwaukee. Brandon Bass added 16 points and nine rebounds for the Celtics, who avoided losing to the Eastern Conference cellar-dwellers for the third time this season.
MEN'S COLLEGE BASKETBALL-TOP 25 SCHEDULE
Arizona wins...Syracuse hammers Indiana
UNDATED (AP) — Aaron Gordon and the second-ranked Arizona Wildcats had no trouble improving to 8-0.
Gordon scored 19 points and Nick Johnson shot 4-for-6 from 3-point range as the Wildcats trounced Texas Tech 79-58. Gordon was 7-for-10 from the field and had eight rebounds to help Arizona win the battle of the boards 43-23.
Johnson and Brandon Ashley each added 18 points to the rout.
Fourth-ranked Syracuse has a 46-game winning streak in nonconference home games after knocking off Indiana in the Big Ten/ACC Challenge.
Trevor Cooney scored 21 points and the Orange improved to 8-0 by downing the Hoosiers 69-52. Tyler Ennis added 17 points and eight assists for Syracuse, which took control with a 25-4 spurt to break open a tie game.
In other top-25 action:
— Tenth-ranked Duke was a 79-69 winner against Michigan as Quinn Cook furnished 24 points and nine assists. Freshman Jabari Parker added 15 points to help the Blue Devils (7-2) regroup from last week's loss to Arizona in the NIT Season Tip-Off.
— Jordan Adams scored 22 points and Kyle Anderson had 21 to lead No. 18 UCLA's offense in an 89-76 win over UC-Santa Barbara. The Bruins were tied 42 apiece at halftime before improving to 8-0.
— No. 21 Massachusetts won its first game as a ranked team since November 1998 as Raphiael Putney scored 15 points in a 69-57 victory over Eastern Michigan.
— Aaron White scored 20 points and Devyn Marble and Jarrod Uthoff added 17 as No. 23 Iowa held off Notre Dame 98-93.
Packers still hope Rodgers can return this weekend
GREEN BAY, Wis. (AP) — The Green Bay Packers aren't ruling out Aaron Rodgers for Sunday's game against Atlanta even though the star quarterback hasn't been medically cleared to play since breaking his left collarbone a month ago.
Packers coach Mike McCarthy said Rodgers will practice in a limited fashion Wednesday but backup Matt Flynn will take the starter's snaps.
The Packers are 5-6-1 this season, 0-4-1 since Rodgers was injured on the opening series of their loss to the Chicago Bears on Nov. 4.
New QB for Cleveland...Groundbreaking day in Minneapolis
UNDATED (AP) — The banged-up Cleveland Browns have a new quarterback on the roster. With Brandon Weeden and Jason Campbell on the sidelines with concussions, the Browns have signed Caleb Hanie. He spent last season backing up Peyton Manning in Denver and before that spent four seasons backing up Jay Cutler in Chicago.
Weeden suffered his concussion in last Sunday's loss to Jacksonville while Campbell went down last week against Pittsburgh.
Seahawks top rankings
UNDATED (AP) — The Seattle Seahawks top the AP Pro-32 power rankings following Monday's 34-7 blowout win against the New Orleans Saints.
Denver is second, followed by New England and Carolina. The Saints dropped from second to fifth.
Houston remains in last place.
Pens rally to beat struggling Isles
UNDATED (AP) — The Pittsburgh Penguins fell behind 2-0 in the first period before sending the New York Islanders to their seventh consecutive loss.
Sidney Crosby provided the tying and winning goals as the Pens pulled out a 3-2 win over the Isles. Crosby knotted the game with 12 minutes left in regulation and ended it at 3:44 of OT. James Neal began the comeback by scoring with just 16 seconds left in the second period before Crosby's tallies sent the Penguins to their fourth consecutive win.
Elsewhere on ice:
— Dan Boyle set up goals by Joe Thornton and Brad Stuart as San Jose earned its sixth consecutive win, 4-2 in Toronto. The Sharks blew a 2-0 lead before Stuart scored with four minutes left in the second period.
— Kari Lehtonen had a season-high 47 saves and Antoine Roussel converted a penalty shot in the third period to spark the Stars' 4-3 victory at Chicago, ending the Blackhawks' six-game winning streak. Valeri Nichushkin had a goal and an assist in the Stars' second victory in six games.
— Dwight King scored the lone shootout goal in the ninth round to lift Los Angeles past Anaheim 3-2. Martin Jones stopped 26 shots during the game and nine more in the shootout to win his NHL debut.
— Ryan Kesler's two third-period goals were the difference in Vancouver's 3-1 downing of Nashville. Brad Richardson also tallied in the Canucks' third win in four games.
— Mike Ribeiro (rih-BEHR'-oh) and Mikkel Boedker (mih-KEHL' BAHD'-kur) each had a goal and two assists as Phoenix thumped Edmonton 6-2. Mike Smith stopped 31 shots in the Coyotes' second victory in six games.
— Nick Foligno (foh-LEE'-noh) scored a highlight-reel goal through his own legs and Sergei Bobrovsky combined with Curtis McElhinney for the Blue Jackets' second shutout of the season in a 1-0 win over Tampa Bay at Columbus. Bobrovsky stopped all 18 shots he faced before leaving with an unspecified injury 4:13 into the third period.
— Colin Greening scored the go-ahead goal late in the second period of Ottawa's 4-2 verdict over Florida. Bobby Ryan, Erik Condra and Joe Corvo also scored to support Craig Anderson's 30-save effort.
— Jeff Skinner tied career highs with two goals and three points in Carolina's 4-1 win at Washington. Justin Peters stopped 26 shots to help the Hurricanes equal their most lopsided victory of the season.
Red Wings lose Zetterberg for at least 2 weeks
DETROIT (AP) — Henrik Zetterberg will miss at least two weeks with a back injury, leaving the Detroit Red Wings without their top two scorers for the time being.
Fellow center Pavel Datsyuk (PAH'-vuhl DAT'-sook) remains out because of a concussion.
Zetterberg has 11 goals and 19 assists for a team-high 30 points. Datsyuk has 12 goals and 11 assists.
Mora gets extension
LOS ANGELES (AP) — UCLA has agreed to a six-year contract extension with head football coach Jim Mora through 2019.
Mora is 18-8 in two seasons with the Bruins, returning the program to national prominence heading into its second straight trip to a bowl game.
RedHawks hire Irish offensive coordinator
UNDATED (AP) — Notre Dame offensive coordinator Chuck Martin has accepted the job as head coach at struggling Miami of Ohio.
Martin succeeds Don Treadwell, who was fired after the RedHawks lost their first five games. The RedHawks lost to Ball State 55-14 last Friday, finishing the season 0-12 under offensive coordinator and interim coach Mike Bath.
Robert Morris cuts seven programs
MOON TOWNSHIP, Pa. (AP) — Robert Morris University is cutting seven Division I athletic programs to bolster funding for the remaining sports.
Men's indoor and outdoor track are being phased out along with tennis and cross country and women's golf, tennis and field hockey.