Happy Monday, all. Hope you enjoyed a restful weekend.
Let's get right to it.
Good morning to everyone but especially to...
THE NEW YORK LIBERTY AND THE LAS VEGAS ACES
The WNBA regular season is over, and the final day came with plenty of drama.
We'll start in New York, where the Liberty clinched a playoff spot withover the Dream. Marine Johannes came to the rescue with 18 points off the bench. Natasha Howard also had 18 while Stefanie Dolson had 15. While they're only the 7 seed and will take on the 2 seed Sky, notes WNBA expert Jack Maloney.
Elsewhere, the Aces are the No. 1 overall seed after Chelsea Gray's career-high 33 points propelled them toover the Storm.
That means the first-round matchups are set:
- 1. Aces vs. 8. Mercury
- 4. Storm vs. 5. Mystics
- 2. Sky vs. 7. Liberty
- 3. Sun vs 6. Wings
All first-round series are best-of-three.
- Joe Burrow at Bengals practice.
- Matt Araiza -- aka "Punt God" -- hit in his Bills debut.
- The NBA's is out.
- Kevin Harvick won the Federated Auto Parts 400, his second straight victory.
And not such a good morning for...
Fernando Tatis Jr.'s latest misstep has his own general manager -- and even a teammate --. Tatis Jr. received on Friday after testing positive for the performance-enhancing drug Clostebol. He claims the positive test was a result of a medicine he took to treat ringworm.
- Tatis Jr. has not played this season due to a .
- Last season -- his first after signing a 14-year, $340-million extension -- Tatis Jr. finished third in NL MVP voting but missed significant time with shoulder injuries.
- Not only will Tatis Jr. miss the final 48 games of this season, but he'll miss the first 32 games of 2023.
The timing couldn't be much worse: It comes about a week after the Padres, and Tatis Jr. was supposed to be just days from returning. Things were looking up in San Diego.
Now, general manager A.J. Preller says that the team needs to get to "a point in time where we trust [him]," and Padres pitcher Mike Clevinger said
MLB reporter Matt Snyder. They just need to look at the reigning champs.writes our
- Snyder: "Ronald Acuña Jr. might have been en route to an MVP last season, too, but he tore his ACL on July 10. ... The 2021 Braves doesn't mean the 2022 Padres are going to win the World Series. ... It doesn't hurt for the team to look at a situation and believe they can pull off something similar, though. Plus, as we established here at the top, the Padres didn't technically lose Tatis this season, as he never played a game. They also had a better record through July than those Braves did. The Braves didn't add a player the caliber of Soto at the trade deadline."
For more on the suspension, be sure to read...
- A look back at the
- in Tatis Jr.'s absence.
Not so honorable mentions
- The Dodgers' 12-game winning streak .
- The Soldier Field turf is... .
Will Zalatoris earns first PGA Tour win at FedEx St. Jude Championship ⛳
The breakthrough has arrived for Will Zalatoris. The tears are finally of joy, not heartbreak.
It came via the first event of the FedEx Cup Playoffs. It's Zalatoris' first career PGA Tour win, and he moves to first in the FedEx Cup Playoff standings.. Zalatoris bogeyed -- yes, bogeyed -- the third playoff hole of the FedEx St. Jude Championship to beat Sepp Straka in
- On the third playoff hole -- the par-3 11th -- Zalatoris' ball came to rest on the rocks just beyond the water. Straka, with the door wide open, proceeded to put his ball in the water.
- Straka found the bunker after his drop and then chipped to a few feet for a look at double-bogey.
- After much consideration, Zalatoris decided to drop as well (instead of hitting off the rocks) and hit his shot to 7 feet before nailing the bogey putt.
Zalatoris made several massive putts down the stretch, including a 10-footer for par on the 72nd hole to help force a playoff and a 14-footer for par on the second playoff hole. There were many times when Zalatoris could have felt the all-too-familiar feeling of coming up short. This season alone, he lost to Luke List in a playoff at the Farmers Insurance Open in January, lost to Justin Thomas in a playoff at the PGA Championship in May and finished tied for second at the U.S. Open in June, one stroke behind Matt Fitzpatrick
He also had a solo second at last year's Masters Tournament. But as they say, the 56th career start is the charm, and this one was so well-deserved, writes golf expert Patrick McDonald.
NFL Preseason Week 1 winners, losers: Rookie QBs shine, Watson struggles 🏈
The first full weekend of NFL action is in the books, and if your favorite team came out victorious, it's surely a team of destiny. If your favorite team lost, just remember the result doesn't actually matter. All kidding aside, no matter how you view the preseason, , writes our NFL guru Tyler Sullivan.
Among the winners were. It's not a decorated class -- Kenny Pickett was the only first-round pick -- but in general, . Here are a few notable performances:
- Kenny Pickett (Steelers, 1st round): 13/15, 95 pass yds, 2 pass TD; 16 rush yds
- Desmond Ridder (Falcons, 3rd round): 10/22, 103 pass yds, 2 pass TD; 59 rush yds
- Malik Willis (Titans, 3rd round): 6/11, 107 pass yds; 38 rush yds, rush TD
- Sam Howell (Commanders, 5th round): 9/16, 145 pass yds; 19 rush yds, 2 rush TD
- Skylar Thompson (Dolphins, 7th round): 20/28, 218 pass yds, 1 pass TD, 25 rush yds
As for another quarterback, Deshaun Watson made his Browns debut under uncertain circumstances. The NFL is, and NFL commissioner Roger Goodell . Still, Watson played Friday in Jacksonville , completing just one of five passes.
Ahead of the game, Watson said he's. It's a change in tone from him: Sue L. Robinson, who issued the initial six-game ban, specifically noted Watson's lack of remorse.
Drew Rasmussen just shy of MLB's first perfect game since 2012 ⚾
Félix Hernández can breathe easy again, but only after Drew Rasmussen made him sweat. The Rays righty was perfect through eight innings before a double by Orioles shortstop Jorge Mateo to lead off the ninth inning ended his bid to throw the first perfect game since Hernández's exactly 10 years ago today. The Rays held on for a 4-1 win.
- Rasmussen had never thrown more than seven innings in a game entering Sunday. He needed just 79 pitches to get through eight before Mateo hit his first offering of the ninth down the left-field line.
- Rasmussen's final line: 8 1/3 innings, 1 earned run, 1 hit, 7 strikeouts, 0 walks, 87 pitches
- The Rays still have no perfect games and just one no-hitter (Matt Garza, 2010) in franchise history.
Lost in the shuffle is that this was a big win for the Rays: They took two of three from the Orioles and now lead Baltimore by 1.5 games for the final AL Wild Card spot.