June 24, 2018
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Doubront, Bard to fill out Red Sox rotation

FORT MYERS, Fla. — Boston manager Bobby Valentine says Felix Doubront and Daniel Bard will fill out the Red Sox rotation.

Valentine announced the final two spots Sunday.

The left-handed Doubront will take the fourth spot and the right-handed Bard will be the fifth starter. Jon Lester, Josh Beckett and Clay Buchholz already had places in the rotation.

Right-hander Alfredo Aceves, who had been competing for one of the spots, will pitch out of the bullpen.

Jordan says he’s 100 percent committed to Bobcats

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Michael Jordan says he’s 100 percent committed to the Charlotte Bobcats and has no intention of selling the struggling NBA franchise.

The Bobcats have lost 12 of their last 14 games and own the league’s worst record at 7-43, but Jordan says he isn’t ready to bail out on the team he became majority owner of in March 2010.

The New York Daily News reported Sunday that Jordan has contemplated selling if the team doesn’t turn things around — both in performance and profitability.

Jordan issued a statement Sunday through the team, saying, “I was disturbed to hear the false report that I intend to sell my majority interest in the Charlotte Bobcats. I am 100 percent committed to building the Bobcats into a contender and have no plans to sell the team.”

Power surges to another IndyCar victory in Alabama

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. — Will Power surged from the pack to win his second straight Indy Grand Prix of Alabama, once again holding off Scott Dixon.

Power started ninth but took the lead on a late caution and pulled back in front of Dixon on the double-file restart with 16 laps left Sunday at Barber Motorsports Park. It was the second straight win for Chevrolet and Team Penske, which is also 3 for 3 in the Alabama race.

Power and Dixon pulled away from the field for a 1-2 finish, just like a year ago. St. Petersburg winner and pole-sitter Helio Castroneves of Penske edged Graham Rahal for third.

Power had his fast qualifying time in the second session negated because a caution came down during his run, forcing the Australian out of his more familiar front-runner status at Barber, where he had held the pole the past two years. He still managed to work his way toward the front, moving into the top five by passing Tony Kanaan on the hairpin fifth turn a third of the way through.

This time, the restart provided the last real drama up front after a caution when Katherine Legge went into a gravel pit.

Bulls’ Derrick Rose misses 10th straight game

OKLAHOMA CITY — All-Star point guard Derrick Rose missed his 10th straight game for the Chicago Bulls on Sunday and still isn’t able to run because of an injured right groin.

“I tried to (run) but they’re taking it easy,” the reigning league MVP said after the Bulls lost 92-78 at Oklahoma City on Sunday. “The most I’m doing is with the weights and stretching and trying to loosen up the scar tissue.”

The Bulls, who have the league’s best record, are 14-6 this season without Rose and 28-6 with him. They’re 7-3 during his current absence.

When asked if he’d be back in time for the playoffs at the end of the month, Rose said: “I think so. If it’s up to me, yeah.”

“It’s going to take me a minute to get my rhythm back. Hopefully it takes a game and I’ll be great,” Rose said. “We’ll see.”

Chicago has just 12 games left in the regular season, which ends April 26.

Mets pick Johan Santana to start opening day

PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. — After a spring full of injury-related news, finally some relief for the New York Mets: Johan Santana will start on opening day.

The left-hander, returning from shoulder surgery performed in September 2010, met with manager Terry Collins in his office Sunday. Later, Collins announced that Santana was set to pitch at home against the Atlanta Braves.

“After we talked to Johan yesterday after he threw, I walked by him and he said to me at the end, ‘You’ve got your pitcher for Thursday,'” Collins said.

Santana made his last spring training start Monday against St. Louis and worked a brief bullpen session Saturday.

“I’m happy to have the opportunity to start the season from Day One with the team. That’s something I was really looking forward to,” the two-time Cy Young winner said.

Santana was 0-1 with a 3.44 ERA in five exhibition starts.

Reds trade 3B Francisco to Braves for RHP Hoover

GOODYEAR, Ariz. — The Cincinnati Reds traded third baseman Juan Francisco to the Atlanta Braves for right-hander J.J. Hoover on Sunday.

The 24-year-old Francisco was competing with Todd Frazier to back up Scott Rolen. Francisco was signed by the Reds in 2004 and was out of minor league options.

Francisco has played 81 games in the majors. The lefty hitter has a career batting average of .284 with five home runs and 29 RBIs.

Hoover was drafted by Atlanta in 2008. The Reds will assign him to Triple-A Louisville.

Hoover split last season between Triple-A and Double-A as a starter and reliever. The 24-year-old was a combined 3-6 with a 2.64 ERA.

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