California advances to Little League WS
SOUTH WILLIAMSPORT, Pa. — Nick Mora allowed just two hits and smacked a three-run homer for Chula Vista, Calif., which routed Westport, Conn., 12-1 on Saturday in the U.S. title game and advanced to the championship of the Little League World Series.
California will play Japan for the World Series title on Sunday. Japan beat Mexico 3-2 earlier Saturday on Takuma Gomi’s leadoff home run in the top of the sixth inning.
California took a 6-1 lead in the first two innings, scoring three times in the first with the help of three Connecticut errors and getting three more on Mora’s long home run.
The West champions added six more runs in the sixth on a passed ball, a wild pitch, an error, an RBI single by Mora, and a two-run double by Michael Gaines.
Takuma Gomi led off the top of the sixth inning with a tiebreaking home run in Japan’s win.
Japan and Mexico had faced off 14 times in World Series history, and Japan improved to 10-5 against its rival when Gomi homered over the wall in right-center field. Japan has appeared in the World Series finals five of the previous seven years.
Brooklyn bodega no longer named A-Rod
NEW YORK — The owner of a Brooklyn bodega named after New York Yankee Alex Rodriguez says he’ll change the store’s name as more and more customers complain about the beleaguered baseball star.
Owner Ricardo Rodriguez tells the Daily News Saturday that customers have been kvetching about the name of his store, A-Rod Grocery.
The establishment was called Pena Grocery until Rodriguez renamed it 13 years ago in honor of the then-Seattle Mariners slugger.
But now Rodriguez, who is not related to three-time MVP, says he’s sick of listening to all the griping about the third baseman. Rodriguez is playing while he appeals a 211-game suspension for violating baseball’s drug agreement and labor contract. On Wednesday the slugger said he was stopping all non-baseball talk after a wild weekend of off-the-field drama.
Selig, MLB honor civil rights pioneers
CHICAGO — Major League Baseball has made significant strides from the days of segregation and bigotry, but some of the sport’s top figures say the work is not complete.
Commissioner Bud Selig, Hall of Famers and current players honored Jackie Robinson and other civil rights heroes at an awards luncheon in downtown Chicago before MLB’s Civil Rights Game between the White Sox and the Texas Rangers on Saturday night.
“We salute the pioneers who enriched our game and, by extension, our culture,” Selig said. “Their courage, their leadership, were vital in the transformation of baseball into the social institution that it is today. They were among the many brave souls who helped change the direction of our nation.”
Weekend events, sponsored by the Chicago White Sox, coincided with commemorations of the 50th anniversary of the civil rights march on Washington and Dr. Martin Luther King’s landmark “I Have a Dream” speech.
The Beacon Awards honored retired major leaguer Bo Jackson and entertainer Aretha Franklin.
Selig praised the legacy of Robinson, who broke color barrier in 1947 with the Brooklyn Dodgers.
Seven men finalize abuse claims with PSU
HARRISBURG, Pa. — Seven men, including Jerry Sandusky’s adopted son and a Sandusky victim key to longtime coach Joe Paterno’s firing, have finalized deals with Penn State over claims of abuse by the school’s former assistant football coach, their lawyer says.
Settlements were reached by Matt Sandusky, the young man known as Victim 2 in court records and three other victims who testified last summer against Jerry Sandusky at his criminal trial, Philadelphia attorney Matt Casey said Friday.
Matt Sandusky had been expected to be a defense witness for his father until the trial, when he told investigators that he also had been abused by Jerry Sandusky. He has since petitioned for a legal name change for himself and his family.
Victim 2 has said he was the boy then-graduate assistant Mike McQueary testified he saw being attacked by Jerry Sandusky in a team shower in 2001. McQueary notified Paterno and school officials at the time, but police were never called, an omission that eventually led to Paterno’s firing.
Sandusky was convicted in June 2010 of 45 counts, found guilty of raping or fondling boys he had met through the acclaimed youth charity he founded, The Second Mile.
Casey did not disclose the terms of the settlements but said they took shape some time ago and were completed a week ago.
Texas A&M suspends pair after arrests
COLLEGE STATION, Texas — Texas A&M announced game suspensions for cornerback Deshazor Everett and safety Floyd Raven, both suspended from the team since July following their arrests on charges of misdemeanor assault and criminal mischief.
Athletic director Eric Hyman says Everett will be suspended for half of a game and Raven will be suspended for one game.
At the time of their arrests, College Station police said Everett and Raven were charged after an April 7 fight at an apartment complex. Police said two people reported being attacked by a group that included Everett and Raven. Police said they both had visible injuries from the attack, and a car was damaged.
Everett had a late interception to seal the Aggies’ 29-24 upset win at top-ranked Alabama in November.
No. 7 A&M opens the season Saturday against Rice.
Franchitti claims pole at Sonoma Raceway
SONOMA, Calif. — Dario Franchitti has won the pole for Sunday’s IndyCar race at Sonoma Raceway.
Franchitti turned a lap in 1 minute, 17.5271 seconds around the 2.385-mile road course in Northern California wine country on Saturday, edging Target Chip Ganassi Racing teammate Scott Dixon — second at 1:17.7196.
Will Power had won the pole in Sonoma for the last three years. He was third in 1:17.9735, followed by Ryan Hunter-Reay and IndyCar series points leader Helio Castroneves.
Charlie Kimball continued his impressive recent run with a sixth-place run. Ganassi’s Kimball won IndyCar’s most recent race in Ohio for his first victory.