Update on the latest sports
Pirates place 3B Hayes on IL with strained left wrist
CHICAGO (AP) — The Pittsburgh Pirates have placed third baseman Ke’Bryan Hayes on the 10-day injured list with a strained left wrist.
Hayes, one of the preseason favorites for NL Rookie of the Year, got hurt on a swing during Saturday’s 5-1 loss to the Chicago Cubs. He also used his left hand diving back to first on a pickoff attempt.
Manager Derek Shelton said X-rays were negative, but an MRI showed some inflammation. Speaking during his pregame media availability, Shelton called Hayes day to day but said that Hayes experienced more discomfort while he worked out before Pittsburgh’s series finale at Chicago, so the team decided to put him on the IL as a precaution.
The 24-year-old Hayes, the son of former big league infielder Charlie Hayes, made his big league debut last summer. He batted .376 with five homers and 11 RBIs in 24 games. He hit a two-run drive off Kyle Hendricks during the Pirates’ 5-3 opening day victory over the Cubs on Thursday.
In other baseball news:
— Domingo Germán (hehr-MAHN’) was cheered by Yankees fans in his return from a domestic violence suspension but struggled against the Toronto Blue Jays, allowing three runs in three innings. Germán hadn’t pitched since Sept. 18, 2019 due to an 81-game ban under Major League Baseball’s domestic violence policy after an alleged incident involving his girlfriend, with whom he has at least one child. The 28-year-old was applauded by fans in right field after he bolted out of the dugout for warmups about 35 minutes before first pitch. He got more cheers after completing a 12-pitch first inning.
— Tigers outfielder Akil Baddoo homered in his first major league at-bat — on his very first pitch. Baddoo led off the bottom of the third inning Sunday with a drive to left field off Cleveland’s Aaron Civale. This game was the 22-year-old Baddoo’s first appearance above Class A. Baddoo was drafted by the Minnesota Twins in 2016, and the Tigers took him with the third pick of the 2020 winter meeting draft of unprotected players. He is coming off a terrific spring training in which he hit .325 with five home runs in 21 games.
— Milwaukee Brewers assistant athletic trainer Dave Yeager spent the night in a hospital after he appeared to collapse on the field Saturday during a game with the Minnesota Twins. It happened in the bottom of the ninth inning when he was treating home plate umpire CB Bucknor, who was hit in the throat area by a foul ball. Brewers manager Craig Counsell said Yeager had been feeling “extremely dehydrated” after the game.
NCAA TOURNAMENT-WOMEN’S NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP
Stanford and Arizona carry Pac-12 banner in women’s title game
SAN ANTONIO (AP) — The last time Tara VanDerveer and Stanford were playing for a national championship, the Pac-12 had just 10 schools and the Cardinal were the standard bearer for the conference.
Now, 11 years later, the Pac-12 is on top of the women’s basketball world with the Cardinal facing Arizona on Sunday night for the title. The conference is guaranteed its first champion since the Hall of Fame coach and the Cardinal won their last title in 1992.
Stanford was last in the title game in 2010, losing to UConn in the Alamodome — the same building the Cardinal will be playing in on Sunday night. The conference became the Pac-12 a year later, after expansion.
The league has had six different schools in the Final Four since 2013, but none reached the title game until Friday night when both Stanford and Arizona advanced.
To get to Sunday night’s game the Cardinal held on to beat South Carolina 66-65 on a basket by Haley Jones with 32 seconds left Friday night. Stanford survived two last-second misses by the Gamecocks.
Arizona didn’t need any last-second karma to beat the Huskies 69-59. Wildcats All-America Aari McDonald scored 26 points and the team played stifling defense to put the clamps on UConn.
Arizona lost twice to Stanford during the regular season, but both teams are much improved from their last meeting on Feb. 22 which the Cardinal won 62-48.
NCAA TOURNAMENT-MEN’S NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP
Gonzaga and Baylor to battle for the national championship
INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — The showdown between Baylor and Gonzaga that was called off in December because of the coronavirus pandemic is finally back on, with the biggest stakes of all: The two best teams all season will play for the national championship Monday night.
The wait was worth it.
The Bears opened the first Final Four in two years Friday by overwhelming Houston, 78-59, cruising to their first national championship game since 1948. Undefeated Gonzaga’s free-flowing offense was struck down in the nightcap by UCLA, which slogged the game down enough to get it to overtime. Freshman Jalen Suggs came to the Bulldogs’ rescue, banking in a 3-pointer from just inside the half-court line at the buzzer for a 93-90 win, giving Gonzaga a shot at becoming the first undefeated team since Indiana in 1976.
COLLEGE SPORTS SURVEY-NIL
AP survey: ADs concerned NIL will skew competitive balance
UNDATED (AP) — An Associated Press survey of Division I athletic directors found that nearly 73% believe allowing athletes to be compensated for use of their name, image or likeness will decrease the number of schools that have a chance to be competitive in college sports. Nearly 28% said many fewer schools would be competitive.
Most of those surveyed were from smaller schools and not in the Power Five conferences. One participant says NIL rights are a game changer for college athletics. Others say the concerns are overblown.
The NCAA is trying to change its rules regarding NIL and compensation for athletes, but the process has bogged down under scrutiny from the Justice Department.
The clock is ticking on the NCAA. Dozens of states are forcing the issue with bills that will grant college athletes NIL rights as early as July. Efforts to put a federal law in place and avoid that situation seem on the slow track in Congress.