- Associated Press - Thursday, October 2, 2014


PITTSBURGH (AP) - Madison Bumgarner pitched a four-hitter with 10 strikeouts and Brandon Crawford hit the first grand slam by a shortstop in postseason history as the San Francisco Giants routed the Pittsburgh Pirates 8-0 in the National League wild-card game.

San Francisco will face NL East champion Washington in the NL Division Series on Friday.

Crawford’s shot over the right-field wall in the fourth inning off Edinson Volquez put the Giants ahead. Bumgarner did the rest as San Francisco won its eighth consecutive postseason game and seventh in a row when facing elimination.

Overpowering one of the NL’s best lineups, Bumgarner walked one and threw 79 of 109 pitches for strikes in his latest stellar postseason performance. The big left-hander, who allowed only four singles, has thrown 15 scoreless innings in two World Series starts.


CLEVELAND (AP) - The crowd’s deafening roar was so loud LeBron James couldn’t hear his name announced.

Unsure of whether to walk out onto the floor, he looked around and realized he was the last one left on the bench. Seconds later, James knew he was home.

Cleveland fans welcomed the NBA superstar back with open arms and ear-splitting screams as nearly 17,000 fans showed up to watch the Cavaliers hold their annual scrimmage, a glorified practice that provided a preview of what could become a spectacular season.

This ovation was in stark contrast to the one he got following the last game James in played for Cleveland in 2010. Following a 27-point loss to Boston in Game 5 of the Eastern Conference semifinals, a game in which he was oddly passive, James was targeted with boos and later questioned about his effort.

Two months later, he announced he was signing with the Heat.

But all has been forgiven, if not forgotten.


BALTIMORE (AP) - Olympic swimmer Michael Phelps registered .14 percent on a blood-alcohol test after he was stopped on a speeding violation, according to charging documents.

The legal limit for intoxication in Maryland is .08.

Phelps, 29, was charged Tuesday with driving under the influence, excessive speed and crossing double lane lines in the Fort McHenry Tunnel on Interstate 95 in his native Baltimore, according to the Maryland Transportation Authority Police. His trial is scheduled for Nov. 19.


ST. ANDREWS, Scotland (AP) - One incredible month of golf was enough for Rory McIlroy to be voted PGA Tour player of the year.

McIlroy won the award, which is a vote of PGA Tour members, for the second time in three years. He joined Tiger Woods, Greg Norman and Nick Price as the only multiple winners of the Jack Nicklaus Award since it began in 1990.

McIlroy went wire-to-wire to win the British Open, rallied from three shots behind on the final day at Firestone to capture his first World Golf Championship, and won the PGA Championship with a sterling back nine at Valhalla.

Chesson Hadley of the U.S. was voted PGA Tour rookie of the year.


NEW YORK (AP) - The NFL has extended its contract with satellite provider DirecTV to carry the “Sunday Ticket” package, which allows viewers to watch out-of-market games.

The deal expands DirecTV’s rights to stream the package live on mobile devices and online. The agreement is worth $12 billion over eight years - $1.5 billion annually, according to a person familiar with the contract.

The previous deal was worth about $1 billion a year.

GRAPEVINE, Texas (AP) - Dallas Cowboys special teams player C.J. Spillman is under investigation but hasn’t been arrested or charged after a report of an alleged sexual assault at the team hotel last month.

Grapevine police spokesman Sgt. Robert Eberling said the alleged assault took place early Sept. 20 at the Gaylord Texan Resort and Convention Center.

The team flew to St. Louis later that Saturday, and Spillman played against the Rams the next day.

Spillman’s agent, Ron Slavin, and attorney Bruce Ashworth declined to comment. The Cowboys didn’t immediately respond to an email seeking comment.


PHILADELPHIA (AP) - Wilt The Stilt is now Wilt The Stamp.

Wilt Chamberlain, the Hall of Famer and the only NBA player to score 100 points in a game, is set to appear on a commemorative U.S postage stamp. Chamberlain died in 1999 at age 63.

The U.S. Postal Service and the Philadelphia 76ers, with cooperation from the NBA, will formally dedicate the Wilt Chamberlain Forever stamps in a halftime ceremony at a Dec. 5 game against Oklahoma City.

The stamps are just over 2 inches tall. Kadir Nelson, of San Diego, created the two stamp image portraits of the NBA Hall of Famer.


RIO DE JANEIRO (AP) - Preparations for the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro have made “a lot of progress” in the last six months but the schedule “remains tight,” the head of the IOC’s inspection team said.

Nawal El Moutawakel, who ended a three-day visit to Rio, was upbeat in nearly all her comments. This contrasts sharply with the situation about six months ago when one IOC member described the preparations as the “worst” in recent history.

Nawal said the main concern was hotel rooms and the pace of building venues. She said 68 hotels were under construction in Rio.

Nawal said 44 test events must be held before the games, with venue construction on a tight schedule at the main Olympic Park and the second cluster in Deodoro in northern Rio. Ground was only broken a few months ago at Deodoro.


TORONTO (AP) - American soccer star Abby Wambach and a group of elite international players filed a lawsuit challenging plans to play the 2015 Women’s World Cup on artificial turf.

Led by U.S. national team forward Wambach, the players filed the suit at the Ontario Human Rights Tribunal in Toronto, attorney Hampton Dellinger told The Associated Press.

The women claim that playing the sport’s premier tournament on fake grass amounts to gender discrimination under Canadian law. Their male counterparts have always played the World Cup on natural grass surfaces and will for the foreseeable future.

The players say there is a greater risk of injury on artificial turf, and the surface impacts both how the game is played and how the ball moves.

On Tuesday, a FIFA official visiting Canada ahead of the tournament next year said there were no plans to reconsider using artificial turf.

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