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Indians Crack, Lose to Devil Rays 1-0 (AP)
Tampa Bay Devil Rays pitcher Seth McClung delivers to Cleveland Indians' Grady Sizemore in the first inning Wednesday, Sept. 28, 2005, in Cleveland. (AP Photo/Ron Schwane)AP - Tampa Bay's Seth McClung pitched eight shutout innings as the Devil Rays beat Cleveland 1-0 on Wednesday night, dropping the Indians three games behind the first-place White Sox with four to play. Chicago beat the Detroit Tigers 8-2.


Yankees Nip Orioles in Tense Pitching Duel (AP)
New York Yankees Alex Rodriguez watches his sixth inning home run against the Baltimore Orioles Tuesday, Sept. 28, 2005 in Baltimore. (AP Photo/Matthew S. Gunby)AP - Alex Rodriguez hit a milestone homer, Derek Jeter singled in the tiebreaking run in the seventh inning, and the Yankees used a fine pitching performance by Shawn Chacon to beat the Orioles 2-1 Wednesday night.


Contreras Leads White Sox Over Tigers 8-2 (AP)
Chicago White Sox starter Jose Contreras pitches against the Detroit Tigers in the third inning Wednesday, Sept. 28, 2005, in Detroit. (AP Photo/Duane Burleson)AP - Jose Contreras won his eighth straight start and Scott Podsednik had four hits, leading the White Sox over the Detroit Tigers 8-2 Wednesday night and opening a three-game lead for Chicago in the AL Central.


Red Sox Lose, Drop One Game Behind Yankees (AP)
Boston Red Sox starting pitcher Bronson Arroyo scratches his head while leaving the field after giving up two runs in the first inning against the Toronto Blue Jays Fenway Park in Boston,  Wednesday Sept. 28, 2005. (AP Photo/Charles Krupa)AP - Bronson Arroyo hurt Boston's playoff chances — and his hopes of being in the postseason rotation if the Red Sox get that far. Arroyo gave up three homers and all seven runs as the Red Sox lost to Toronto 7-2 Wednesday night and dropped one game behind the New York Yankees in the AL East with four games remaining.


Astros Beats Cards, Keep Lead Over Phils (AP)
Houston Astros Lance Berkman celebrates with teammates Morgan Ensberg and Mike Lamb after hitting a two-run home run in the fifth inning against the St. Louis Cardinals Wednesday, Sept. 28, 2005 at Busch Stadium in St. Louis.(AP photo/Tom Gannam)AP - Morgan Ensberg had a tiebreaking double in the ninth inning, his fourth hit of the game, and the Houston Astros beat the St. Louis Cardinals 7-6 Wednesday night to maintain a 2 1/2-game lead over Philadelphia in the NL wild-card race.


Rumph Headed to 49ers' Injured Reserve (AP)
AP - Defensive back Mike Rumph will be placed on the San Francisco 49ers' injured reserve list after tearing a muscle in his foot during practice on Wednesday.

Smith to retire after 14 NBA seasons (AFP)
National Basketball Association veteran Steve Smith, pictured June 2005, whose solid playing career may have been exceeded by his exceptional citizenship, will retire on Friday.(AFP/Getty Images/File/Tom Pidgeon)AFP - National Basketball Association veteran Steve Smith, whose solid playing career may have been exceeded by his exceptional citizenship, will retire on Friday.


Yankees edge Orioles to take AL East lead (Reuters)
Reuters - Alex Rodriguez slammed a milestone home run and Shawn Chacon delivered on the mound for the New York Yankees in a 2-1 win over the Baltimore Orioles at Camden Yards on Wednesday to reclaim top spot in the AL East.

Second Ref Allegedly Involved in Scandal (AP)
AP - A second Brazilian referee allegedly admitted that he took bribes to favor clubs in certain matches this year, authorities said on Wednesday.

Hasek Saves 23, Senators Beat Sabres (AP)
Buffalo Sabres left winger Taylor Pyatt (24) throws a punch at Ottawa Senators right winger Brian McGrattan (46) during a fight in the first period at the HSBC Arena in Buffalo, N.Y., Wednesday, Sept. 28, 2005. (AP Photo/Don Heupel)AP - Dominik Hasek made 23 saves in his third game of the preseason, leading the Ottawa Senators over the Buffalo Sabres 5-2 Wednesday night.


Razing Arizona
The Cardinals are falling well short of expectations and have slipped into the rankings' Bottom Five.

McNabb hopes hernia won't keep him out (AP)
Donovan McNabb tossed touchdown passes on a broken ankle and played an NFC title game with an agonizing rib injury. Now McNabb is taking his biggest health risk yet: playing with a severe abdominal strain that likely will need surgery and definitely will leave the five-time Pro Bowl quarterback in discomfort and pain all season.

Horn: NFL made 'mockery' of Saints (AP)
Receiver Joe Horn criticized the NFL on Wednesday for forcing the Hurricane Katrina-displaced New Orleans Saints to play their home-opener at the Meadowlands. ``Man, let me tell you something, the Saints aren't going to be the first team that they made a mockery of, and we will not be the last team that they make a mockery of,'' Horn said in a conference call with Buffalo-area reporters.

Doctor confirms Pennington's injury (AP)
Jets quarterback Chad Pennington got the same opinion on his right shoulder from noted orthopedist James Andrews: his rotator cuff is torn. Pennington visited Andrews on Tuesday in Birmingham, Ala., and had an arthrogram, where dye is injected into the joint and X-rayed to detect any tears. Andrews, who repaired Pennington's shoulder earlier this year, conferred with the Jets' medical staff and...

Bailey not sorry for dissing KC's effort (AP)
Champ Bailey didn't apologize when he learned he made Kansas City coach Dick Vermeil mad for saying the Chiefs weren't playing hard. Instead, Bailey insisted he'd say it again. ``I'm doing my job, doing it well,'' Bailey said Wednesday. ``I'm going to keep doing it and I'm going to talk about it.'' At issue were statements Bailey made to teammates during Denver's 30-10 win over Kansas City on...

San Antonio embraces Saints (AP)
The line snaked for a quarter mile. Thousands of football-starved fans were jumping at the chance to buy tickets to see the New Orleans Saints -- and for a chance to show how the nation's eighth-largest city can support an NFL team. The mayor and business leaders are trying to rally the city to support the Saints, who were forced here when Hurricane Katrina swamped their city, and prove San Antonio...

Patriots confirm Harrison's season over (AP)
New England Patriots safety Rodney Harrison will miss the rest of the season with torn ligaments in his left knee. The Patriots placed Harrison on injured reserve Tuesday, and agent Steve Feldman said the 32-year-old strong safety would have surgery in four to six weeks for a torn anterior cruciate ligament, medial collateral ligament and posterior cruciate ligament.

LB Winborn leaves 49ers amid trade talks (AP)
Linebacker Jamie Winborn cleaned out his locker and left the San Francisco 49ers on Wednesday as the club abruptly announced plans to trade the former starter. Winborn lost his job to converted defensive end Andre Carter last week, and coach Mike Nolan suggested the fifth-year pro should stay away while the 49ers find him a new home.

Bills place LB Spikes on injured reserve (AP)
Takeo Spikes was placed on injured reserve Wednesday after the Bills Pro-Bowl linebacker had successful surgery on the right Achilles tendon he tore in Sunday's 24-16 loss to Atlanta. Spikes will be replaced in the lineup by Angelo Crowell, who has never started a game in his three-year career. Crowell has been a special teams ace for the Bills over the last two seasons, recording the third-most...

QB Davey agrees to terms with Cardinals (AP)
Free-agent quarterback Rohan Davey has agreed to terms with the Arizona Cardinals, providing insurance in case Kurt Warner's groin strain proves more serious than expected. Davey's agent, Joel Segal, said the 6-foot-2, 245-pound former LSU star was in Arizona and would have a physical Wednesday before signing a one-year contract.

Wizards' Blatche to miss training camp (AP)
Washington Wizards rookie Andray Blatche will miss training camp while he recovers from gunshot wounds from an attempted carjacking. Blatche walked under his own power as he visited with teammates at the MCI Center on Wednesday, three days after the shooting and one day after being released from the hospital.

Jackson sets bar low for Lakers (AP)
Championships have always been the goal for Phil Jackson's teams. Now that he's back with a different Los Angeles Lakers team, it's a matter of simply making the playoffs. Jackson did his best Wednesday to lower expectations, defining postseason qualification as the goal for a young, rebuilt team coming off a horrible season.

Knicks add Ford, Hanners as assistants (AP)
Phil Ford and Dave Hanners rejoined coach Larry Brown on Tuesday when they were hired as New York Knicks assistants. Ford spent last season as an assistant under Brown at Detroit. He served 12 years as a North Carolina assistant, including the 1993 NCAA championship season. Ford was the 1979 NBA rookie of the year.

Hornets' preseason games rescheduled (AP)
The New Orleans Hornets announced Monday they will play two of their preseason games at their temporary home at the Ford Center in Oklahoma City. The changes will also affect a Seattle SuperSonics-Houston Rockets exhibition game that had been scheduled in Oklahoma City. The Hornets will play exhibition games in Oklahoma City on Oct.

Bobcats re-sign F Gerald Wallace (AP)
CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP ) -- The Charlotte Bobcats re-signed forward Gerald Wallace on Tuesday to a three-year contract. Wallace averaged 11.1 points and 5.5 rebounds last season while starting 68 of the 70 games he played. His average of 1.6 steals a game ranked ninth in the NBA. Wallace was drafted by Sacramento with the 25th overall pick in 2001 and spent three seasons with the Kings.

Clippers sign first-round pick Korolev (AP)
First-round draft pick Yaroslav Korolev signed a contract with the Los Angeles Clippers on Monday. Selected 12th overall, Korolev is the highest Russian draft pick in NBA history. He averaged 16.3 points and 7.5 rebounds for the under-18 Russian national team in July's European Championship. An early entry candidate in the NBA draft, the 6-foot-9 forward also played in Russia's Superleague A.

Greece handles Nowitzki, wins Euro title (AP)
Greece beat Germany 78-62 Sunday to win its second European Championship, frustrating Dirk Nowitzki with strong defense and getting 22 points from Theodoros Papaloukas. Nowitzki, the tournament's MVP, scored 23 points but was only 1-for-8 from 3-point range. The Dallas Mavericks star had nine rebounds but four turnovers.

Roenick to miss last two preseason games (AP)
Jeremy Roenick will sit out the Los Angeles Kings' final two preseason games as he recovers from a concussion sustained last weekend. Roenick was leveled by Phoenix's Denis Gauthier in the Kings' 7-4 victory Sunday. ``I think it indicates the state of our game, the lack of respect -- especially in preseason,'' Roenick said afterward.

Red Wings' Kronwall out at least 6 weeks (AP)
Niklas Kronwall will be out at least six weeks with a knee injury, leaving the Detroit Red Wings without one of their top defensemen when they open the regular season. Kronwall's left knee was injured when Colorado's Dan Hinote's hip checked him along the boards in an exhibition game Tuesday night. ``He has some ACL and MCL damage,'' general manager Ken Holland said Wednesday before the Red Wings...

Lemieux stars in Crosby's home debut (AP)
The crowd came to see Sidney Crosby's first home game in a Pittsburgh uniform. Instead, they got to see a show by the old man himself. Mario Lemieux, who turns 40 next week and is more than twice as old as the Penguins' most prized prospect since No. 66 himself, played as though he was 18 again with a goal and three assists Tuesday night in a 7-2 exhibition victory over the flu-weakened Columbus...

NBC shuns Burk, will run hockey ad (AP)
Despite objections from Martha Burk, NBC said it was going ahead with plans to air an NHL commercial showing a bare-chested player being dressed by a scantily clad woman. Burk, chairwoman of the National Council of Women's Organizations, said the ad was offensive. Burk led an unsuccessful effort to allow female members at Augusta National three years ago and is stepping down as chair of NCWO on...

Flyers win, improve to 4-0 in preseason (AP)
Patrick Sharp scored two goals to lead the Philadelphia Flyers to a 5-3 exhibition victory over the New York Islanders on Tuesday night. ``It was nice to have a few goals and have a few points tonight,'' Sharp said. ``They come at the oddest times.'' The Flyers improved to 4-0 in the preseason and seem poised to open the season as serious Stanley Cup contenders after revamping their roster...

Clowe's two goals keep Sharks perfect (AP)
Ryan Clowe scored two goals in a 1:35 span of the second period to help the San Jose Sharks beat the Los Angeles Kings 5-3 on Tuesday night for their fifth victory in five exhibition games. Clowe also scored the winning goal in the Sharks' 4-3 victory over the Kings in San Jose on Sept. 18. The 6-foot-2 right wing had 27 goals and 35 assists last season in 74 games for Cleveland in the American...

Bourque's son sent to AHL by Capitals (AP)
Chris Bourque, the son of retired All-Star defenseman Ray Bourque, was among five forwards the Washington Capitals assigned to their AHL affiliate Tuesday. Jared Aulin, Eric Fehr, Jakub Klepis and Dave Steckel also were sent to the Hershey Bears. Defenseman Jeff Schultz was assigned to junior club Calgary of the Western Hockey League.

Rusty's ride
His career is winding down, but Rusty Wallace arguably has never been better.

Investigator: Car involved in deadly raceway wreck found mechanically sound (AP)
A race car that killed two spectators when it crashed into the bleachers last month at the Mount Vernon Raceway has been found to be mechanically sound even though the driver said its throttle stuck, an investigator said Wednesday. Illinois State Police Trooper Les Vancil told The Associated Press he believes the quarter-mile dirt track's high banking ``definitely was a safety issue'' that...

Wallace, Martin happy in twilight of careers (AP)
Rusty Wallace and Mark Martin have been racing against each other for more than two decades.

Crew chiefs fined for Dover violations (AP)
NASCAR said Tuesday it has fined Nextel Cup crew chief Joe Garone and Busch Series crew chief Charlie Lewis $1,000 each for violations last weekend at Dover International Speedway.

Aikman and Staubach make first hire (AP)
Hall of Fame Racing made its first hire Tuesday when it tabbed Philippe Lopez to build the NASCAR team owned by former Dallas Cowboys quarterbacks Roger Staubach and Troy Aikman.

Johnson's crew chief never felt like also-ran (AP)
Jimmie Johnson's crew chief never thought his race team was anything but a top-notch outfit.

Johnson wins MBNA RacePoints 400, takes over standings lead (SportsTicker)

Helton lays down the law (AP)
NASCAR president Mike Helton, dissatisfied with recent driver conduct, said offenders could be seriously punished for violations in Sunday's race at Dover International Speedway.

Bodine makes late pass, wins NASCAR Trucks Las Vegas 350 (SportsTicker)

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