#SportsReport: LA Lakers To Retire Two Kobe Bryant Jerseys

Sep 13, 2017

MLB:

Mookie Betts hit two home runs and a two-run triple, and the Boston Red Sox rolled past the Oakland Athletics 11-1. The Red Sox have won five of their last six and pushed their American League East lead back to four games over the Yankees. Betts went 3 for 5 with six RBIs. Eduardo Rodriguez allowed one hit over six innings for Boston.

Adeiny Hechavarria hit a tiebreaking home run in the eighth inning off Sonny Gray and the Tampa Bay Rays, playing as the home team in a series relocated to Citi Field because of Hurricane Irma, beat the New York Yankees 2-1. Tampa Bay has split the first two games of the set held at the home of the New York Mets.

Kris Bryant hit a three-run homer, Jose Quintana pitched seven effective innings and the Chicago Cubs beat the New York Mets 8-3 for a sorely needed victory. Quintana (10-11) also helped himself at the plate with a pair of sacrifices, including a perfectly placed safety squeeze that drove in Kyle Schwarber in the fourth. Quintana got another bunt down in the sixth, sending Javier Baez to third ahead of Ben Zobrist's RBI single.

The Cleveland Indians share a record with a team celebrated by Hollywood. "Moneyball" has its sequel. Following a familiar script of scoring first, playing strong defense and riding dominant pitching, the Indians extended their winning streak to 20 games and matched the AL mark held by the 2002 Oakland Athletics, beating the Detroit Tigers 2-0 on Tuesday night. Cleveland's streak, which began on Aug. 24 in Boston, is tied for the majors' second-longest in 82 years — and the Indians show no signs of stopping. Corey Kluber (16-4) strengthened his Cy Young Award case with a four-hitter as Cleveland joined the 2002 A's, 1935 Chicago Cubs (21) and 1916 New York Giants (26) as the only teams to win at least 20 in a row.

Yasiel Puig hit a 2-run double and Clayton Kershaw won his 17th game of the year as the first-place Los Angeles Dodgers snapped an 11-game losing streak Tuesday night with a 5-3 win over the arch-rival San Francisco Giants. The Dodger losing streak had been the longest since the team relocated to Los Angeles from Brooklyn, New York, in 1958.

Justin Verlander pitched eight innings of one-hit ball in a stellar second start for Houston, and the Astros snapped their four-game skid with a 1-0 victory over the Los Angeles Angels on Tuesday night. Yuli Gurriel's second-inning single drove in the only run for the Astros (87-57), who lowered their magic number for clinching the AL West title to five by blanking the second-place Angels (73-71).

In another game with playoff implications, Carlos Gonzalez homered twice and the Colorado Rockies won their sixth game in a row, beating the Arizona Diamondbacks 4-2 on to tighten the race for the National League's top wild card. Gonzalez drove in all four Colorado runs in his first multihomer game since Aug. 16 last year and is batting .451 (14 for 31) in September.

NFL:

Star linebackers Ray Lewis and Brian Urlacher and game-breaking wide receiver Randy Moss are among 11 first-year eligible players for the Pro Football Hall of Fame. Also part of the 108 early nominees who are eligible for the first time, having been retired for five years when the class is chosen next February, are cornerback Ronde Barber, wideouts Donald Driver and Steve Smith (former Giant, Eagle and Ram), offensive linemen Steve Hutchinson, Matt Birk, and Jeff Saturday, and defensive linemen Richard Seymour and Kyle Vanden Bosch.

The Green Bay Packers have taken the top spot in the AP Pro32 poll. After starting the season at No. 2 and beating the Seattle Seahawks, the Packers received seven of 12 first-place votes for 376 points in balloting by media members who regularly cover the NFL. The Kansas City Chiefs climbed to No. 2 after routing the New England Patriots, who had been No. 1.

Pittsburgh Steelers coach Mike Tomlin says the news surrounding defensive end Stephon Tuitt's injured left biceps is encouraging. Tomlin says there's even a chance that Tuitt could play this weekend when the Steelers host the Minnesota Vikings in their home opener. Tuitt injured his arm on the second play from scrimmage in Pittsburgh's 21-18 season-opening win over Cleveland. Team officials initially feared Tuitt would be out long term. Tomlin said Tuesday that the news is "very positive" compared with what it could have been. The team will monitor Tuitt's progress throughout the week. If Tuitt does not practice at least once, it is unlikely he will play Sunday. Tyson Alualu and L.T. Walton will fill in for Tuitt if he can't go.

In other NFL developments:

—The Eagles have signed kicker Jake Elliott off Cincinnati's practice squad and placed Caleb Sturgis on injured reserve. Elliott was a fifth-round pick in April after graduating from Memphis as the school's all-time leading scorer with 445 points. He made 81 of 104 field goals. His 77.9 percent success rate is a school record. Longtime Patriots kicker Stephen Gostkowski also went to Memphis. Sturgis injured his left hip on the opening kickoff in a 30-17 win at Washington on Sunday

— The Jacksonville Jaguars have placed receiver Allen Robinson on injured reserve and signed receiver Max McCaffrey off New Orleans' practice squad. Robinson tore the anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee Sunday at Houston and will have season-ending surgery. McCaffrey is the son of retired NFL receiver Ed McCaffrey and the brother of Carolina Panthers rookie running back Christian McCaffrey.

— A person with knowledge of the situation says the Arizona Cardinals are re-signing veteran running back Chris Johnson in the wake of the serious injury to star David Johnson. The Cardinals released Chris Johnson in their final roster cuts this year. David Johnson was injured late in the third quarter of the Cardinals' season-opening loss at Detroit, when Johnson was hit hard after a catch at the Lions' 3-yard line.

NBA:

Former New York Knicks star Charles Oakley has sued the team's owners, saying he was defamed when they claimed he committed assault and was an alcoholic. The lawsuit details how Oakley was treated before and after he was forcefully removed from Madison Square Garden during a Feb. 8 game. The lawsuit seeks unspecified damages.

One retired jersey number just isn't enough for Kobe Bryant and the Los Angeles Lakers. The Lakers will retire Bryant's No. 8 and No. 24 in a ceremony Dec. 18 during their game against Golden State, the franchise announced Tuesday.

Bryant wore No. 8 from 1996 to 2006, when he switched to No. 24 for the remainder of a 20-year career spent entirely with the Lakers. He will be the 10th player honored by the Lakers with a retired number hung high on the Staples Center wall, but the first in NBA history to have two numbers retired by the same team.

"Kobe's jerseys are taking their rightful home next to the greatest Lakers of all time," Lakers owner Jeanie Buss said. "There was never any doubt this day would come. The only question was when. Once again, Lakers fans will celebrate our hero, and once again, our foes will envy the legendary Kobe Bryant."

The five-time NBA champion and 18-time All-Star selection is the Lakers' franchise leader in points (33,643), games played (1,346), 3-pointers (1,827), steals (1,944) and free throws (8,378), among countless superlatives.

WNBA:

In the WNBA, Seimone Augustus scored 24 points to lead the Minnesota Lynx to a 101-81 victory over the Washington Mystics in Game 1 of their semifinal playoff series. In another game, five players with Los Angeles scored in do uble figures to lead the Sparks to a 79-66 victrory over the Phoenix Mercury as LA seeks to defend its WNBA championship. The victory came in Game 1 of the semifinal series.

Sports Media:

ESPN distanced itself from anchor Jemele Hill's tweets one day after she called President Trump "a white supremacist" and "a bigot." "The comments on Twitter from Jemele Hill regarding the president do not represent the position of ESPN," the network tweeted Tuesday from its public relations department's account. "We have addressed this with Jemele and she recognizes her actions were inappropriate."

Sports radio personality Craig Carton has spoken out on Twitter, vowing to defeat fraud charges and return "stronger than ever." The host of WFAN's "Boomer and Carton" show posted a statement on the social media platform Tuesday. He says it's been "incredibly hard" to be silent since his arrest a week ago amid claims that he and others misappropriated at least $5.6 million from two investors. Carton says his fight has only just begun, but he'll be proved not guilty.

Boston Marathon:

The U.S. premiere of a film chronicling the story of Boston Marathon bombing survivor Jeff Bauman has taken place at the hospital where he and others who were injured in the 2013 deadly attack were treated. "Stronger" debuted Tuesday at the Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital in Boston and arrives in theaters Sept. 22. The movie features Jake Gyllenhaal as Bauman, who lost his legs when two bombs went off near the marathon finish line and says he's "honored" to have Gyllenhaal play him.

Olympics:

The World Anti-Doping Agency has cleared the cases of 95 of the first 96 athletes accused of doping in Russia’s state-run doping program. The New York Times reports that according to internal reports among the organization’s executives, the cases had been reviewed and cleared citing lack of evidence.

NCAA:

Four Central Connecticut football players have been suspended from this week's game at Youngstown State following their arrests at an off-campus party. Wide receivers Chika Chukwu and Jose Garcia and linebackers Randall Laguerre and Kenneth Keen each face charges of breach of peace and permitting a minor to possess alcohol. Police say the four live at the home where the party took place hours after the Blue Devils lost to Fordham.

Authorities are investigating the death of a Pennsylvania college's lacrosse recruit from Massachusetts. Authorities in Easton say 19-year-old McCrae Williams, of Weston, Massachusetts, was pronounced dead at a hospital around 5 p.m. Monday. The Morning Call reports Williams planned to start playing lacrosse at Lafayette College this year.

Two games into the season, Notre Dame coach Brian Kelly considers junior quarterback Brandon Wimbush a work in progress. He thinks last week's 20-19 loss to Georgia will be a springboard for Wimbush. The Fighting Irish play Saturday at Boston College.

About a dozen Michigan State players are expected to travel to Texas later this week to help relief efforts in the wake of Hurricane Harvey. Offensive lineman Tyler Higby, who is from Houston, says the players will all be staying at his house and spending a couple days helping the community. The Spartans have an open date on their schedule this weekend. Higby says the support from his teammates means a lot, since players don't get much time off during the season. He expects to head down Friday and return Sunday. Coach Mark Dantonio says his players are making the trip for the right reasons.

Skating:

Olympic figure skating champion Yulia Lipnitskaya has revealed she struggled with anorexia for years before retiring at the age of 19. Lipnitskaya's gold medal with Russia in the team event at the 2014 Sochi Games, with a program themed around the movie "Schindler's List," made her the youngest Olympic skating champion since 1936. However, she struggled to maintain that success and her mother revealed last month she had retired following treatment for anorexia.

Lipnitskaya says her "only regret" is that she didn't speak publicly about her illness before, saying "it all carried on not just for one year, or two, or three." In comments on the Russian Figure Skating Federation website, Lipnitskaya adds she hasn't worn skates in almost a year and is "no longer drawn to the ice."

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