- Associated Press - Friday, October 6, 2017

NFL

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) - Cam Newton apologized in a Twitter video post Thursday night for sexist comments made to a female reporter.

“After careful thought, I understand that my word choice was extremely degrading and disrespectful to women,” the Carolina Panthers quarterback said at the start of the nearly two-minute video. “To be honest, that was not my intentions. And if you are a person who took offense to what I said, I sincerely apologize to you.”

On Wednesday when Charlotte Observer reporter Jourdan Rodrigue asked Newton about wide receiver Devin Funchess’ route running Wednesday, Newton laughed and said, “It’s funny to hear a female talk about routes. It’s funny.”

The NFL released a statement Wednesday saying that Newton’s response to the question was “just plain wrong and disrespectful to the exceptional female reporters and all journalists who cover our league.”

Dannon, the maker of Oikos yogurt, cut ties with spokesman Newton on Thursday. Company spokesperson Michael Neuwirth released a statement saying it was “shocked and disheartened” at the former league MVP’s behavior and comments.AUTO RACING

SYDNEY (AP) - Michael Andretti is going to join Roger Penske in racing Down Under next year on the V8 Supercars circuit.

Andretti Autosport and McLaren Formula One chief Zak Brown’s United Autosports announced late Thursday that they would buy into the Walkinshaw Racing on the Australian touring car circuit.

From Jan. 1, they said the team will be known as Walkinshaw Andretti Autosport, pending Supercars approval.

“Any chance you get to beat Roger Penske, you take it,” Andretti was quoted as saying by Australian Associated Press. “He’s the benchmark in the sport.”

Penske took a major share in Dick Johnson Racing in 2015 to form DJR Team Penske, a partnership that is now dominating the Supercars championship.

Their drivers Scott McLaughlin and Fabian Coulthard were first and third, respectively, in the season standings heading into this weekend’s Bathurst 1000 - the highest-profile race on the circuit.

Andretti is expected to attend Sunday’s race at the Mount Panorama in Bathurst, about 200 kilometers (125 miles) northwest of Sydney in New South Wales state.

BASEBALL

NEW YORK (AP) - Mets captain David Wright underwent back surgery, his second operation in a month as he tries to return to the major leagues after an absence of 1½ years.

The team said Thursday that Wright had a procedure in Los Angeles called a laminotomy, is which a bony layer over the spinal canal is removed to treat nerve compression.

Wright has not played for the Mets since May 27, 2016. Dr. Robert Watkins operated that June 16 to repair a herniated disk in Wright’s neck.

The third baseman, who turns 35 in December, had trouble throwing in spring training and started the season on the disabled list.

He began a minor league injury rehabilitation assignment on Aug. 22, but it was cut short four days later because of shoulder pain after he went 1 for 10 with five strikeouts in three games, the first at designated hitter followed by two at first base. He had surgery Sept. 5 to repair his right rotator cuff.

A seven-time All-Star, Wright is guaranteed $47 million by the Mets over the next three seasons. He was on the disabled list for four months in 2015 when he strained his right hamstring and then developed spinal stenosis. He returned in September and helped the Mets reach the World Series, which they lost to Kansas City.

HOUSTON (AP) - The Boston Red Sox have taken designated hitter Eduardo Nunez off their playoff roster because of a knee injury and replaced him with outfielder Chris Young.

Nunez hurt himself running to first base and had to be carried from the field in the first inning of an 8-2 loss to Houston on Thursday in Game 1 of the AL Division Series.

Nunez missed 19 of Boston’s last 20 regular-season games with what the team called a sore knee. The Red Sox thought he had recovered enough to contribute in the postseason.

Major League Baseball permits a replacement for an injured player during the postseason. By rule, Nunez is out for the rest of this series and also the next round, if the Red Sox advance. He would be allowed to play in the World Series if Boston makes it that far.

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