Update on the latest sports
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Tide visits The Swamp…Penn State hosts Auburn in rare SEC-Big Ten game
UNDATED (AP) — Top-ranked Alabama visits No. 11 Florida on Saturday in one of the biggest games on the Week 3 schedule in college football. It’s the Southeastern Conference opener for both teams.
Alabama takes a seven-game winning streak against the Gators into The Swamp, but only one of those games — in 2011 — was played in Gainesville. Four times, including the last three, Alabama beat Florida in the Southeastern Conference championship game. The Gators are looking to avenge a 52-46 loss to the Crimson Tide in last year’s SEC title game and potentially shake up the College Football Playoff picture for the third straight week.
No. 22 Auburn visits No. 10 Penn State, a matchup between college football bluebloods that have never faced each other in a regular-season game. It is also the first matchup of a ranked SEC team against a ranked Big Ten team at a home stadium since Alabama played at Penn State in 2011.
No. 19 Arizona State travels to No. 23 BYU for the first meeting between the two former Western Athletic Conference foes since Sept. 12, 1998. BYU beat Arizona State that day 26-6 in Provo. The Cougars have a chance to go 3-0 against the Pac-12 with a win. They’ve already beaten Arizona and rival Utah. BYU recently announced it was slated to join the Big 12.
Scherzer, unbeaten with Dodgers, faces Reds
UNDATED (AP) — Max Scherzer is unbeaten since being traded to the Dodgers, and he’ll try to extend that streak Saturday when he pitches at Cincinnati in an afternoon matchup with playoff implications.
Scherzer is 6-0 with an 0.88 ERA in eight starts for Los Angeles, which got the three-time Cy Young Award winner and star infielder Trea Turner from Washington in late July. In 51 innings for the Dodgers, Scherzer has allowed just 29 hits and struck out 72. Overall, the 37-year-old Scherzer leads the majors with a 2.17 ERA.
The Dodgers have already clinched a playoff spot and are two games behind the first-place Giants in the NL West. Sonny Gray starts for the Reds as they aim for a wild-card berth.
In other highlights of Saturday’s schedule:
— Milwaukee can secure its fourth consecutive postseason appearance with another win over the Chicago Cubs and losses by Cincinnati and San Diego. That would assure the Brewers at least a wild card as they close in on the NL Central title. Milwaukee, which has a 12 1/2-game lead in the division, has beaten the Cubs 10 straight times. All-Star Corbin Burnes makes his first start since teaming with closer Josh Hader on a no-hitter last weekend. Burnes tossed the first eight innings and Hader worked the ninth in a 3-0 victory a week ago at Cleveland that marked the second no-hitter in Brewers history.
— Longtime Cardinals ace Adam Wainwright has won five straight starts going into his outing against San Diego at Busch Stadium. The 40-year-old has won nine of his last 10 starts and is a major reason why St. Louis is in the playoff race, competing with the Padres, Reds and Phillies for the second NL wild card. Wainwright was tagged for a season-high three homers by the Padres in a loss on May 15. Yu Darvish starts for San Diego.
— The Phillies and fading Mets are clinging to postseason hopes as they continue a series in New York. Both teams are chasing the Cardinals, Padres and Reds for the final NL wild card and trying to keep the NL East-leading Braves within sight, too. Philadelphia right-hander Aaron Nola gets the ball, trying to shake a recent rut. Since taking a perfect game into the seventh inning against San Diego on Aug. 21, Nola has a 6.41 ERA over four starts. He’ll oppose right-hander Carlos Carrasco.
— Lance Lynn looks for his first win since July 25 when he starts for the AL Central-leading White Sox at Texas. Lynn is 0-1 in his last seven starts. He spent time on the injured list during that span because of inflammation in his right knee. Last weekend, in his first start since being reinstated, he shut out Boston on two hits for five innings. The 34-year-old Lynn is in his first season with Chicago and was an All-Star. He’ll see plenty of familiar faces on the Rangers after spending the previous two years with them.
— San Francisco left-hander Alex Wood makes his first start since Aug. 26 as he returns from a bout with COVID-19. While he is still regaining his energy, Wood hopes to work deep into the game against Atlanta in a matchup of National League division leaders. The Giants have been forced into two bullpen games a week, and manager Gabe Kapler called Wood’s return a “possible end in sight.”
Rays place CF Kevin Kiermaier on COVID-19 related IL
UNDATED (AP) — The AL East-leading Tampa Bay Rays have placed center fielder Kevin Kiermaier on the COVID-19-related IL due to general illness symptoms and purchased the contract of right-hander Joey Krehbiel from Triple-A Durham before Saturday’s game against Detroit.
Kiermaier was pinch-hit for during the sixth inning of Friday night’s 7-4, 10-inning win over the Tigers.
The defensive wizard is hitting .247 with four homers and 33 RBIs in 110 games.
In other MLB news:
— Left fielder Joey Gallo has left the New York Yankees’ game against the Cleveland Indians because of neck tightness. Gallo was pulled after the Yankees batted in the third inning and was replaced by Tyler Wade. In his only at-bat, he fouled out to third base in the second. Gallo is hitting .166 with 12 homers and 20 RBIs in 46 games since New York acquired him from Texas ahead of the trade deadline. Overall, the slugger is batting .204 with 37 homers and 75 RBIs this season.
Zdeno Chara returning to Islanders on 1-year contract
UNDATED (AP) — Zdeno Chara (zuh-DAY’-noh CHAH’-rah) is returning to the team where he started his career after agreeing to terms on a one-year deal with the New York Islanders. It will be the 44-year-old’s 24th NHL season.
Chara was a 1996 draft pick of the Islanders and made his debut with them in 1997. He will chase the Stanley Cup at least one more time just over a decade since hoisting it as Boston’s captain.
The big Slovak defenseman spent last season with Washington. He was unsure of his plans to continue playing hockey. Now Chara joins another championship contender and gives New York veteran depth on the blue line.