September 18, 2013 in Sports

Nationals mourn victims of shooting

From Staff And Wire Reports
 
Associated Press photo

Holding Navy hats, Nationals manager Davey Johnson, right, and team observe a moment of silence.
(Full-size photo)

Baseball: The vice chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff greeted players in the Washington Nationals clubhouse before the game, handing out blue-and-gold Navy caps. Manager Davey Johnson and his players held those caps from Adm. James Winnefeld over their hearts during a pregame moment of silence, disturbed only by the sound of a hovering helicopter.

Baseball was played in the nation’s capital Tuesday, just a short walk from where a gunman killed 12 people at the Navy Yard military instillation. It was another attempt from the world of sports to restore normalcy when things really aren’t normal.

“There’s nothing we can do to replace the lives that were lost yesterday,” Nationals outfielder Denard Span said.

Fans arrived via the Navy Yard subway station, although they were sparse in number because Monday’s game was rescheduled on short notice. The USS Barry, anchored in the Anacostia River and the Navy Yard’s top tourist attraction, was easily visible from the players’ parking lot. The U.S. and team flags were at half-staff on the center-field concourse.

Then, at 1:07 p.m. on a cool, late summer day, the first pitch was thrown. The Nationals were back in their regular “curly W” caps, and soon fans were cheering an inning-ending double play by the home team’s defense. It was back to work, playing the first game of a day-night doubleheader.

“It hit me hard,” Span said, “because this is right across the street from our stadium. Just to know that we come here every day for work, and you drive by the Navy Yard all the time.”

Much of the chaos that engulfed the ballpark 24 hours earlier was gone. The stadium’s parking lot had been used as a staging area for relatives on Monday, when even Johnson was asked for extra ID to get past an armed guard.

“It’s a shame that our society has got to be worried about that kind of stuff, but I feel pretty safe here today,” said Nationals fan Kevin Neale of Rockville, Md. “I’m glad to be at the ballpark. Sorry for all the people who had families and who had to deal with that yesterday. It’s just an unfortunate situation.”

Ian Desmond claimed his team drew from the nation’s strength.

“We’re a resilient group, like America.” Desmond said. “We’re not going away. We’ll be here.”

Bonds ordered to meet probation officials: Barry Bonds has been ordered to meet with U.S. Probation Department officials to discuss terms of his 30-day house arrest.

A federal judge ordered Bonds to meet with the officials to work out the details of his sentence after he lost his appeal of his felony obstruction of justice conviction. The order was dated Monday and made public Tuesday.

A jury convicted Bonds in 2011 and he was sentenced to home confinement, two years of probation and a $4,000 fine. The sentence was put on hold while Bonds pursued his appeal.

Now that he lost, Major League Baseball’s career home run leader said he would like to immediately begin serving his sentence.

Ryder Cup lands at Bethpage Black

Golf: The Ryder Cup is coming to Bethpage Black.

The PGA of America announced that Bethpage Black will host the rowdiest event in golf in 2024. The public course on New York’s Long Island with a reputation of loud and boisterous fans also will get the 2019 PGA Championship.

Bethpage Black first held a big tournament at the 2002 U.S. Open won by Tiger Woods. It held another U.S. Open in 2009, and The Barclays in 2012 as part of the FedEx Cup playoffs.

Sports betting in New Jersey rejected

Sports gambling: A federal appeals court has dealt another blow to New Jersey’s efforts to legalize sports gambling.

In a decision released Tuesday, the 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Philadelphia upheld a judge’s ruling that New Jersey’s law allowing sports betting conflicts with federal law and shouldn’t be implemented.

McMillen hired to coach L.A. Kiss

Arena Football: The new Arena Football League team named for the rock band Kiss has hired its coach.

Former AFL player and veteran coach Bob McMillen will oversee the expansion L.A. Kiss when it begins play next year in Anaheim.

McMillen retired as a player in 2007, finishing as the AFL’s second all-time leading rusher. He spent three years as coach of the league’s Chicago Rush. Earlier this year, McMillen was elected into the league’s hall of fame.

L.A. Kiss co-owners Gene Simmons and Paul Stanley helped announce McMillen’s hiring.

Simmons says McMillen shares the ownership’s philosophy of “go big or go home” in bringing “in-your-face football” to the region.

Ronaldo’s hat trick leads Real Madrid

Soccer: Cristiano Ronaldo scored his second Champions League hat trick to lead Real Madrid over Galatasaray 6-1, and Manchester United, Manchester City and title holder Bayern Munich all opened with victories.

Wayne Rooney scored twice to reach the 200-goal mark for Manchester United in a 4-2 win over Bayer Leverkusen.

City won 3-0 at the Czech Republic’s Viktoria Plzen. Bayern beat visiting CSKA Moscow 3-0.

High winds ground America’s Cup

Miscellany: Two America’s Cup races between Emirates Team Zealand and Oracle Team USA have been postponed because of high winds blowing against a strong tide sweeping out of San Francisco Bay.

Labonte returning after bike accident

Auto racing: Bobby Labonte is set to return to NASCAR this weekend at New Hampshire after breaking three ribs while bike riding last month.

Labonte was hurt while cycling near his North Carolina home. The 49-year-old driver is sore but ready to race.


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