Update on the latest sports
Coach Vrabel among new trio of Titans out
UNDATED (AP) — Tennessee coach Mike Vrabel (VRAY’-bul) will miss the Titans’ preseason finale a week after testing positive for COVID-19. Two other coaches and another player also have joined the protocols as the team’s outbreak grows.
The Titans announced Saturday special teams coach Craig Aukerman, who missed a couple of practices under the NFL’s COVID-19 protocols, will be back for Saturday night’s game with Chicago. Wide receiver coach Rob Moore and offensive line assistant Jason Houghtaling will miss the game because of the virus protocols.
Rookie wide receiver Racey McMath also was placed on the reserve/COVID-19 list Saturday. That makes him the seventh player currently on the list and 12th player or coach either placed on the reserve list or following the COVID-19 protocols since Vrabel announced he had tested positive a week ago.
Defensive lineman Anthony Rush was activated from the reserve list Friday, which is for players who test positive for COVID-19 or quarantined after being in close contact with an infected person.
In other NFL news:
— The Jacksonville Jaguars have traded backup quarterback Gardner Minshew to Philadelphia for a conditional draft pick in 2022. The Jaguars received a sixth-round pick that would become a fifth-rounder if Minshew plays 50% of snaps in three games. Minshew joins a QB room that already has starter Jalen Hurts and veteran backup Joe Flacco. The Eagles cut third-string quarterback Nick Mullens to make room for Minshew.
— Versatile veteran offensive lineman Greg Mancz has been traded by the Baltimore Ravens to the Miami Dolphins, and the teams have swapped undisclosed draft picks. The Dolphins also placed linebacker Vince Biegel on injured reserve. Mancz played in only four games last year, and the Ravens signed him during the offseason. The Dolphins struggled to run the ball in 2020 and have sought to improve depth in their offensive line.
— The New Orleans Saints have canceled their home preseason game set for Saturday against the Arizona Cardinals because of the potential for Hurricane Ida to batter Louisiana’s coast with wind as high as 140 mph by Sunday. After initially moving kickoff up by seven hours, the Saints decided to cancel the game came.
Bernhard Langer, Doug Barron share PGA Tour Champions lead
GRAND BLANC, Mich. (AP) — Bernhard Langer birdied the final hole for a 6-under 66 and a share of the second-round lead Saturday in The Ally Challenge.
A day after shooting his age on his 64th birthday, Langer had six birdies in a bogey-free round at Warwick Hills to match Doug Barron at 14-under 130.
Langer has 41 PGA Tour Champions victories, four off Hale Irwin’s record.
The German star won his last title in March 2020.
Barron shot 64. Joe Durant was a stroke back after a 66.
VIRUS OUTBREAK-US OPEN
US Open players don’t need COVID shots but now fans, others do
NEW YORK (AP) — There’s been a change in vaccination rules for the U.S. Open, just days before the tennis tournament begins. Players and their team members don’t need to be vaccinated for COVID-19 — but now, spectators do. Others such as chair umpires, ball kids and members of the media also need to show proof of vaccination.
As recently as Wednesday, the U.S. Tennis Association said fans wouldn’t need to be vaccinated. But, prompted by the New York mayor’s office, the USTA did an about-face, deciding Friday to make it mandatory for fans over 12 years old entering the grounds to show proof they’ve received one dose.
Play begins Monday.
Grizzlies waive Rajon Rondo less than 2 weeks after trade
UNDATED (AP) — The Memphis Grizzlies have waived veteran guard Rajon Rondo. The Grizzlies announced the move Saturday after acquiring Rondo on Aug. 16 in a deal that sent guard Eric Bledsoe to the Los Angeles Clippers for Rondo, Patrick Beverly and center Daniel Oturu. Memphis traded Beverly to Minnesota on Wednesday. Rondo spent half of last season with the Clippers after coming from the Atlanta Hawks in a trade for Lou Williams. Rondo’s biggest impact came on the sideline. The 35-year-old guard served as an unofficial assistant coach, bolstering his teammates with pep talks during timeouts.
Elsewhere around the NBA:
— NBA referees will all be vaccinated against the coronavirus this season. Part of the NBA agreement with the National Basketball Referees Association also says that those working games will receive booster shots once they become recommended. Anyone within close proximity of players and referees will also have to be vaccinated. Players are not required to be fully vaccinated. But many were last season after the league encouraged them to do so by agreeing to relax some health and safety protocols for those who were.
Indians send struggling reliever Karinchak to minors
CLEVELAND (AP) — The Cleveland Indians have sent reliever James Karnichak to Triple-A Columbus after the struggling right-hander failed to retire a batter in Friday night’s loss to Boston.
Karinchak entered the game in the eighth inning with a 3-1 lead, but gave up a walk, a single and a three-run homer to Jonathan Araúz. Karinchak was removed following the home run in the 4-3 defeat.
First baseman Bobby Bradley, who had been out with a sore knee, was activated from the 10-day injured list.
Karinchak has gone from being one of the most dominant relievers in the AL to the minors in a span of six weeks. He was 6-2 and had a 2.52 ERA with 68 strikeouts in 39 1/3 innings over 41 games at the All-Star break. Karinchak is 1-2 and has an 8.40 ERA with nine strikeouts in 15 innings over 18 games since.
Elsewhere in the majors:
— The Chicago Cubs have placed infielder David Bote on the 10-day injured list after he sprained his right ankle when he stepped on a ball during batting practice. The Cubs also brought up infielder Alfonso Rivas and right-hander Scott Effross from Triple-A Iowa. Pitchers Ryan Meisinger and Jake Jewell were designated for assignment.
— Gregory Polanco’s stay in Pittsburgh is over. The Pirates have released the veteran right fielder in order to give younger players an opportunity over the final six weeks of the season. The 29-year-old Polanco is hitting just .208 and had become a target of fan derision in recent weeks. Polanco was making $11.6 million this season, accounting for more than 20% of the team’s entire payroll. Manager Derek Shelton credited Polanco for the way he handled the news. Pittsburgh called up Cole Tucker to take Polanco’s roster spot. Tucker is expected to be among a group of several players who will get a look in right field going forward.
LITTLE LEAGUE WORLD SERIES
Ohio takes on Michigan Sunday in Championship game
SOUTH WILLIAMSPORT, Pa. (AP) —Cooper Oden struck out six and allowed two runs over five innings Saturday as Ohio hung on to beat South Dakota 5-2 in a semifinal at the Little League World Series.
The West Side Little League squad from Hamilton, Ohio, will be the first team from the state to play in the LLWS title game.
Ohio will face Michigan on Sunday.
F1-BELGIAN GRAND PRIX
Verstappen takes pole position for Belgian GP, Russell 2nd
SPA-FRANCORCHAMPS, Belgium (AP) — Max Verstappen produced a brilliant last lap in the rain to take the pole position for Sunday’s Belgian Grand Prix and deny George Russell his first career pole in Formula One.
Verstappen found extra pace to cross the line .321 ahead of Russell and .334 clear of world champion Lewis Hamilton as pouring rain drenched the track.
Verstappen now leads Hamilton 6-3 for pole positions this season and is in a good position to claw back Hamilton’s eight-point lead in the championship.
US to play Britain for gold
TOKYO (AP) — The United States will play Britain for the gold medal in wheelchair rugby at the Tokyo Paralympic Games.
The U.S. defeated Australia 49-42 on Saturday to reach Sunday’s final. Britain defeated host nation Japan 55-49 in the other semifinal.
Wheelchair rugby features constant mayhem as athletes strapped into wheelchairs smash into each other much like bumper cars at the amusement park.
The United States won gold in 2000 in Sydney and in 2008 in Beijing.