Update on the latest in sports:
Surging Mets win 7-2, sweep Marlins behind 4 homers
UNDATED (AP) — Michael Conforto homered twice, Pete Alonso and Jeff McNeil hit two-run shots and the surging New York Mets beat the Miami Marlins 7-2 to complete a four-game sweep.
The Mets took another early lead and posted their sixth straight victory, winning for the 13th time in 14 games. New York has swept the last-place Marlins three times this season.
Steven Matz won again at Citi Field, helping New York stay in the thick of the NL wild-card race.
Since sitting a season-high 11 games under .500 after a loss at Miami on July 12 after the All-Star Game, the 59-56 Mets have won at a torrid pace and own a league-best 19-6 record since the break.
Elsewhere in the majors:
_ Ozzie Albies homered twice in his second straight four-hit game, Ronald Acuña Jr. and Freddie Freeman both went deep, and the Atlanta Braves beat the Minnesota Twins 11-7. Max Fried used a season-high 10 strikeouts to win his fourth consecutive start.
_ Gerardo Parra hit a three-run homer against his former team, Joe Ross pitched six shutout innings of three-hit ball and the Washington Nationals completed a three-game sweep of the San Francisco Giants with a 4-1 win.
_ Zac Gallen threw five scoreless innings and helped himself with a run-scoring sacrifice bunt in his Arizona debut, leading the Diamondbacks to a 6-1 win over the Philadelphia Phillies. Gallen (2-3) allowed just one hit with three walks and six strikeouts, lowering his earned run average to 2.40.
_ Russell Martin drove a two-run, two-out single up the middle in the ninth inning for the Dodgers’ 10th walk-off win of the season, and Los Angeles swept the St. Louis Cardinals with a 2-1 victory. Marcell Ozuna homered in the sixth for the Cardinals, who went 0-5 on their California road trip after scoring just two runs in three games at Dodger Stadium.
_ Ian Happ hit his second career grand slam, José Quintana tossed two-hit ball through seven innings to win his sixth straight decision and the Chicago Cubs ripped the Oakland Athletics 10-1. Kyle Schwarber hit a three-run homer, Victor Caratini connected and Javier Báez kept up his latest hot streak with two hits and two RBIs as the Cubs responded with a rout of their own after Oakland pounded them 11-4 on Tuesday night.
_ Keston Hiura hit two home runs and drove in three runs, powering the Milwaukee Brewers to an 8-3 win and three-game sweep of the Pirates in Pittsburgh. Junior Guerra picked up a second win in as many nights, allowing one hit and one walk in two innings of relief.
_ José Ramírez homered in both games, Cleveland’s bullpen combined on a four-hitter in the second game and the Indians swept the Texas Rangers to complete a doubleheader sweep and gear up for a big, four-game series in Minnesota. The Indians open the series against the first-place Twins on Thursday trailing by two games in the AL Central.
_ Yuli Gurriel drove in a team record-tying eight runs, Gerrit Cole won his 10th straight decision and the Houston Astros routed the Colorado Rockies 14-3 for their sixth victory in a row. A day after homering twice with three RBIs, Gurriel again teed off for the AL West leaders. He hit a three-run homer in the first inning, a sacrifice fly in the third, a three-run double in the fourth and an RBI grounder in the sixth. Gurriel tied Houston’s RBI record set by J.R. Towles in 2007.
_ Gio Urshela and Kyle Higashioka each hit two home runs, and the Yankees’ long-ball outburst against the Baltimore Orioles reached historical proportions in a 14-2 blowout that extended New York’s winning streak to eight games. Urshela had a pair of two-run drives, and Higashioka totaled five RBIs with his two shots. New York has a major league-record 52 homers against Baltimore this season.
_ Reliever Brock Stewart allowed two hits over four scoreless innings in his Toronto debut as the Blue Jays withstood a late Tampa Bay rally to beat the Rays 4-3 in a bullpen day. Blue Jays rookie Bo Bichette set a team record with a double in eight straight games, breaking the mark of seven set by Carlos Delgado in 2000. The 21-year-old Bichette also extended his career-opening hitting streak to 10 games.
_ Ivan Nova pitched eight scoreless innings, and the Chicago White Sox beat the Detroit Tigers 8-1. Nova allowed five hits, walked three and struck out one as he picked up his third win in four starts. Former Tiger James McCann had three RBIs, while Tim Anderson reached base five times and scored three runs. The White Sox took three of four games from the Tigers and went 5-2 on their trip to Philadelphia and Detroit.
_ Mallex Smith doubled leading off the eighth inning and scored when Daniel Vogelbach beat out a potential inning-ending double play, and the Seattle Mariners snapped a five-game losing streak with a 3-2 win over the San Diego Padres.
_ The series finale between the Boston Red Sox and Kansas City Royals was suspended by rain with the score tied 4-4 in the top of the 10th inning. The game will be picked up where it left off _ with a 2-1 count on Meibrys Viloria _ on a mutual off-day, Aug. 22, at 1:05 p.m.
Twins turn another triple play for Pérez
UNDATED (AP) — The Minnesota Twins have turned their second triple play with Martín Pérez on the mound in a span of less than three weeks. It happened in the third inning of Wednesday’s game against Atlanta. With three runs already in for Atlanta and the bases loaded, Miguel Sanó, Jonathan Schoop and C.J. Cron turned three in plenty of time to beat Tyler Flowers after his sharp grounder.
Pérez was also pitching on July 22 against the New York Yankees when Edwin Encarnación (ehn-kar-nah-see-OHN’) grounded into a 5-4-3 triple play in that game.’
In other MLB news:
_ Kansas City Royals speedster Billy Hamilton is so fast even the first base umpire couldn’t seem to believe it. Hamilton was called out at first by umpire Mark Carlson twice in the first four innings of Wednesday night’s game against the Boston Red Sox. Both times the plays were overturned on instant replay.
_ The Chicago Cubs have signed catcher Jonathan Lucroy. The 33-year-old Lucroy was designated for assignment by the Angels last Friday. The two-time All-Star is expected to join the NL Central-leading Cubs in Cincinnati on Thursday. Lucroy will help plug a gap created when All-Star Willson Contreras strained his hamstring.
_ The Arizona Diamondbacks have designated three-time All-Star Greg Holland for assignment. The relief pitcher led the National League in saves two seasons ago with 41 and has 17 saves in 22 chances for Arizona this year. But his ERA has climbed to 4.54 from 2.33 at the end of June and he’s allowed at least one earned run in seven of his last 13 appearances.
_ The New York Yankees have taken a wait-and-see approach to infielder Gleyber Torres’ perplexing core injury. Torres underwent a battery of tests on Wednesday in New York, and the results were positive enough to keep him off the injured list.
_ The Miami Marlins placed shortstop Miguel Rojas on the 10-day injured list with a strained right hamstring before their series finale against the New York Mets. Rojas was injured in the third inning Tuesday night, stumbling over first base while trying to avoid a double play. He remained on the ground for a while and needed help walking off the field. The 30-year-old is in the midst of a productive season, hitting .289 in 108 games and playing a key role defensively for a young Miami team.
_ The Boston Red Sox say second baseman Dustin Pedroia (peh-DROY’-uh) has had another surgery on his troublesome left knee. The 35-year-old has played only six games this season, all in April. The four-time All-Star was limited to three games last year. It’s uncertain whether he’ll ever again play in the majors.
_ The Giants have cut second baseman Joe Panik, no longer needing him to play regularly after getting Scooter Gennett at the trade deadline. The 28-year-old Panik, a first-round draft pick by the Giants in 2011 and key contributor on San Francisco’s 2014 World Series champion team, was batting .235 with three homers and 27 RBIs in 103 games this season. Panik was designated for assignment on Tuesday.
Orlando to host Pro Bowl again
UNDATED (AP) — The Pro Bowl will return to Orlando for the fourth straight year and be held one week before the Super Bowl. The NFL’s all-star game will be an afternoon match at 3 p.m. on Sunday, Jan. 26. A week later, the league’s championship game will be played a few hours south in the Miami area.
Fans, players and coaches will vote for the 88 Pro Bowlers. The game matches the AFC against the NFC.
In other NFL news:
_ The Bengals and NFL Foundation are donating $75,000 to help those directly affected by the shooting rampage in Dayton that left 10 people dead. The donation to The Dayton Foundation will go to a fund for those wounded and the families of those killed in the shooting in the city’s popular Oregon District early Sunday.
_ The Dallas Cowboys are donating $50,000 to a fund for victims of the mass shooting that killed 22 people and left about two dozen others injured in El Paso, Texas. The team says the NFL Foundation was planning a matching donation to the El Paso Community Foundation Victims’ Fund. The Cowboys have had community outreach programs for years in El Paso. The West Texas city has a large contingent of Cowboys fans.
_ Colin Kaepernick says he’s “still ready” to return to the NFL, even though he is set to enter his third season out of the league. In a video posted on social media, the 31-year-old Kaepernick is shown working out in a gym. He says in the video: “5 a.m. 5 days a week. For 3 years. Still Ready.”
_ The Detroit Lions have agreed to a contract extension with offensive lineman Joe Dahl through 2021. The 26-year-old has made four starts in his career with the Lions, including one last season.
_ The Chicago Bears will unveil statues of Hall of Famers Walter Payton and George S. Halas outside of Soldier Field on Sept. 3. The 12-foot, 3,000-pound bronze statues honoring the great running back and the franchise founder and coach will be made public two days before Chicago hosts Green Bay to kick off the NFL’s 100th season.
_ Former Denver Broncos wide receiver Jack Dolbin Jr. has died at age 70 in Allentown, Pennsylvania. Dolbin starred at Wake Forest before beginning an unusual route to the NFL. Dolbin played in three smaller leagues before landing with the Broncos in 1975 and beginning a five-year career that included the franchise’s first Super Bowl appearance.
COLLEGE FOOTBALL NEWS
Clemson football flagged for 8 secondary NCAA violations
COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — Clemson’s national championship football program has been flagged for eight NCAA infractions.
Clemson self-reported the violations and says none were considered major and all issues about the penalties have been resolved.
The football violations reported by the school included a homeowner paying a player above the going rate for work around the home on three separate occasions. Two violations involved players on social media in a promotional capacity.
The other five infractions were committed by football staffers and included reimbursing an athlete for ground transportation expenses above the school’s mileage rate.