NEW YORK (AP) — Giancarlo Stanton was activated by the New York Yankees on Tuesday and was set to start at designated hitter after missing 32 games because of a strained left hamstring.
New York made the move before a series opener against Toronto. The Yankees also activated third baseman Gio Urshela, who has recovered from a bone spur in his right elbow, and right-hander Jonathan Loaisiga, who was sidelined with a medical condition the team did not specify.
Stanton hit cleanup against Toronto, ending Clint Frazier’s 16 straight games as New York’s No. 4 hitter, and Urshela hit fifth.
Right fielder Aaron Judge, limited to one game since Aug. 11 because of a strained right calf, is likely to be activated Wednesday or Thursday.
Stanton hit .293 with three homers and seven RBIs in 14 games before he got hurt.
Shortstop Gleyber Torres was out of the starting lineup because of a left quadriceps issue but was available off the bench, according to manager Aaron Boone.
New York optioned infielder Mike Ford and infielder/outfielder Miguel Andujar to its alternate training site.
More AP MLB: https://apnews.com/MLB and https://twitter.com/AP-Sports
Mladenovic collapses again but blames umpire
PARIS (AP) — Kristina Mladenovic’s first match since her nightmarish end to the U.S. Open produced another collapse and a controversial umpire’s call at the French Open on Tuesday.
The French player lost to Laura Siegemund of Germany 7-5, 6-3 after serving for the first set at 5-1.
Mladenovic was furious with chair umpire Eva Asderaki for not spotting a double bounce on set point. During a 10-stroke exchange, Mladenovic hit a drop shot that Siegemund ran for and got back over the net — although a TV replay showed the ball bounced twice. Mladenovic slowed up, looked confused, and wound up touching the net, which automatically gave the point to Siegemund.
”I think the chair umpire was the only person not to have seen it on the center court,” Mladenovic said.
That point and the set should have belonged to her right then because of the double bounce, but neither Siegemund nor Asderaki acknowledged as much.
”Mistakes are human but I don’t see how the umpire can miss that. She didn’t see a double bounce,” Mladenovic said. ”Unfortunately she will continue at Roland Garros, and I won’t continue at Roland Garros.”
She did not expect Siegemund to have to own up.
”If she would have done it, she would have all my respect and be super fair play,” Mladenovic said. ”But she’s not the one responsible. I think the chair umpire is the one that should be really focused on that call.”
But she did call for video replays, like the highly controversial VAR system used in soccer.
”It would be great and we’d avoid a sad scenario like I had today,” Mladenovic said.
It wasn’t quite as sad as Flushing Meadows, though, where she served for the match at 6-1, 5-1 against Varvara Gracheva then lost a tiebreaker and was crushed 6-0 in the third set.
She called that the most painful loss of her career. Four days later, there was more misery when she was part of the top-seeded women’s doubles team dropped from the U.S. Open for having been potentially exposed to COVID-19.
Public health officials who oversaw her tournament hotel said she was at risk after playing cards in a group including Benoit Paire, the Frenchman removed after testing positive for the virus. She had to go into quarantine.
Following Siegemund on Court Philippe Chatrier was top-ranked Novak Djokovic beneath a closed roof. Djokvoic, bidding for a second title here and an 18th major title overall, faced Mikael Ymer.
In other women’s first-round matches, second-seeded Karolina Pliskova beat Mayar Sherif 6-7 (9), 6-2, 6-4. Sherif was the first Egyptian player to qualify for the main draw at Roland Garros.
Danish teenager Clara Tauson earned her first tour-level victory by beating U.S. Open semifinalist Jennifer Brady 6-4, 3-6, 9-7. The 17-year-old Tauson, who won the Australian Open junior title last year, saved two match points.
In remaining men’s first-round play, U.S. Open semifinalist Matteo Berrettini defeated Vasek Pospisil 6-3, 6-1, 6-3. The seventh-seeded Italian next faces Lloyd Harris.
No. 20 Cristian Garin of Chile won against German veteran Philipp Kohlschreiber 6-4, 4-6, 6-1, 6-4 and plays lucky loser Marc Polmans.
More AP tennis: https://apnews.com/apf-Tennis and https://twitter.com/AP-Sports
Heat vs. Lakers position-by-position matchups — or is it just about LeBron?
A look at the key elements of Miami Heat-Los Angeles Lakers, with the best-of-seven NBA Finals opening Wednesday at 9 p.m. at Disney’s Wide World of Sports complex.
Edge goes to:
Center: The Lakers moved back to opening with a bigger lineup in the Western Conference finals, so, if it stays that way, this matchup, on paper, would be the Lakers’ Dwight Howard against the Heat’s Bam Adebayo. So just as in the Eastern Conference finals against the Boston Celtics, Adebayo would have to dominate, possibly as a swing vote in the series. Granted, it probably won’t be to the degree that Nikola Jokic needed to for the Denver Nuggets in the previous round. The reality, is expect most of Adebayo’s defensive focus to be on Anthony Davis. Edge: Heat.
Power forward: While an argument could be made that the Heat at least have a variety of defensive options against LeBron James (let’s call them “slowers” and not “stoppers”), the same can’t be said about the defensive matchup against Anthony Davis. If the Heat go with Adebayo in the matchup, then expect Davis to take him away from the paint. And if Jae Crowder remains the Heat’s de facto power forward, then Davis likely will set up shop in the post. This could lead to a re-introduction of Kelly Olynyk or Derrick Jones Jr. into the Heat power rotation. Edge: Lakers.
Small forward: Did you see James at closing time Saturday night against the Nuggets? Nobody is stopping that. Nobody. And now there is three-day break to recharge. Yes, Heat coach Erik Spoelstra knows LeBron well. And, yes, the Heat have had LeBron’s number during regular-season games in recent years. But this is not the regular season. And this is the team whose president, Pat Riley, publicly challenged LeBron to man up and remain with the Heat in the wake of losing the 2014 NBA Finals. Jimmy Butler has had plenty of moments this postseason, but this is the ultimate challenge, one he has handled surprisingly well in the past. Edge: Lakers.
Shooting guard: The Heat have to compete at the ancillary positions and likely have to win them. This would be one, where a Duncan Robinson 3-for-all might be the best avenue to a level of success in this series. But don’t underestimate Danny Green, who certainly has had his playoff moments against the Heat while with the San Antonio Spurs. The Heat need Robinson to be near the top of his game, as he was Sunday against the Celtics. The expectations are not as significant with Green, who has more than enough ability to match Robinson 3-pointer for 3-pointer. Expect Green to also take defensive turns on Butler, with James then able to be rested defensively against Robinson or Crowder. Edge: Even.
Point guard: Goran Dragic has been nothing short of revelation this postseason, and will have to be again for the Heat to maximize their chances against the Lakers. While James is the Lakers’ de facto point guard, rest assured that Dragic will not be dealing with that defensive assignment. For the Lakers, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope is somewhat of a place holder here. He might not be as complete as Avery Bradley, who opted out of the bubble restart, but he is capable of solid contributions. The Heat need far more than mere solid contributions from Dragic. As with Green, Caldwell-Pope could also take defensive turns against Butler. Edge: Heat.
Bench: With Spoelstra shortening his rotation against the Celtics, the Heat bench at the end of the Boston series basically stood as Tyler Herro and Andre Iguodala or bust. This could, however, be a series that produces a rival for Kendrick Nunn. And if the Lakers do open with a bigger lineup, Olynyk or Derrick Jones Jr. might re-emerge, as well. The Laker have championship experience of Rajon Rondo off the bench and quality depth that also features Alex Caruso and Markieff Morris. Unless Dion Waiters achieves the ultimate revenge, this facet of the series might stand as a push. Edge: Even.
Coach: Have you seen what Spoelstra has done to Frank Vogel previously, during those Heat-Pacers series at the start of last decade? Over. And over. And over. Of course, that also was when Spoelstra had LeBron on his side. Spoelstra has dialed up game plans that have produced series wins as the underdog in three consecutive matchups. He seemingly stands at the top of his game at the moment. Edge: Heat.
Intangibles: Talk about the bubble, extra time off, the lack of travel, or any other nuance all you want. But is there anyone or any team that can stop a motivated James? The Heat have plenty of defensive options, with Butler, Adebayo, Iguodala and Jones. But they don’t have a LeBron stopper. No one has. Edge: Lakers.
Prediction: The Heat arguably have defined team play during this postseason run at Disney, on both ends of the court. But by now, it has become clear that Victor Oladipo (or TJ Warren), Giannis Antetokounmpo and any of the Celtics’ leading men are not LeBron James. And with all due respect to Spoelstra’s team, it’s not as if the Heat are entering with what those Golden State Warriors did in those series against LeBron’s Cleveland Cavaliers. Lakers in six.
NBA Finals: Miami Heat vs. Los Angeles Lakers
(Best of seven)
Game 1: Wednesday, 9 p.m.
Game 2: Friday, 9 p.m.
Game 3: Sunday, 7:30 p.m.
Game 4: Tuesday, Oct. 6, 9 p.m.
Game 5*: Friday, Oct. 9, 9 p.m.
Game 6*: Sunday, Oct. 11, 7:30 p.m.
Game 7*: Tuesday, Oct. 13, 9 p.m.
* — If necessary.
(All games on ABC.)
©2020 Sun Sentinel (Fort Lauderdale, Fla.)
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49ers have to figure out long snapper situation quick
Perhaps the only rough spot in San Francisco’s 36-9 victory over the New York Giants was long snapper Kyle Nelson and his inability to get the ball to holder Mitch Wishnowsky on field goals and extra points. Head coach Kyle Shanahan said the team hasn’t made a decision yet on what to do at long snapper, but they’ll work out some players at that spot this week.
The 49ers botched an extra point Sunday because of a low snap from Nelson and would’ve done so with another had it not been for a facemask penalty on the Giants when they tackled Wishnowsky in the post-snap scramble.
Shanahan said he spoke with Nelson on Monday, and was complimentary of the nine-year veteran before saying the club would be searching for a possible replacement.
“Kyle’s had an unbelievable career. He’s been a great 49er. He’s been a great teammate. I’ve loved Kyle in these three years that I’ve gotten to know him and he’s been great for us,” Shanahan said. “So, I know it was a really bad day. I just told him that, you know, fortunately it didn’t cost us anything. It wasn’t an issue in the game because of how the rest of the game went. We were able to still get a W, but he understands this business. He understands how the league works and we’re going to bring in some guys tomorrow, work them out. We’ll see how they look and then we’ll decide what’s the best for us going forward.”
Reserve offensive tackle Justin Skule handled the long snapping duties on San Francisco’s final extra point try, but Shanahan dismissed the idea of Skule taking on that responsibility full time.
This is the second consecutive season San Francisco has had long snapper issues. Nelson was suspended for 10 games late in the 2018 season and missed the final four games that year, and the first six of the 2019 campaign. While they waited on Nelson’s return, the 49ers cycled through Colin Holba, Jon Condo and Garrison Sanborn in the games before Nelson was back in the lineup.
The 49ers signed Nelson to a four-year extension last offseason worth $4.54 million with $450,000 guaranteed. While he did recently ink an extension, it’s not the kind of deal that would prevent the 49ers from moving on.
This is something San Francisco has to work out quickly. The bad snaps didn’t affect them Sunday, but not having a reliable player at that spot in close games would present a potential game-changing problem for the 49ers.
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