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Sports briefs for Sept. 1, 2013

By BDN Staff and Wire Reports, Special to the BDN

Sea Dogs’ Ranaudo named EL pitcher of year

PORTLAND, Maine — Portland Sea Dogs right-handed pitcher Anthony Ranaudo has been named the 2013 Eastern League Pitcher of the Year.

The award is voted on by Eastern League managers and media members.

Ranaudo posted an 8-4 record with a 2.95 ERA with 106 strikeouts in 19 starts. The 23 year-old earned a promotion to Triple-A Pawtucket on Aug. 2.

Since joining the Pawtucket Red Sox, Ranaudo is 2-1 with a 3.42 ERA.

Red Sox cut Bard from 40-man roster

The Boston Red Sox designated right-handed pitcher Daniel Bard for assignment Sunday to make room on their 40-man roster, reported.

The Red Sox also added newly acquired infielder John McDonald and outfielder Quintin Berry to the roster and placed right-hander Alex Wilson on the 60-day disabled list.

Bard, 28, has struggled with his confidence and injuries in the past couple seasons after showing much promise earlier in his career.

The Red Sox demoted Bard to the minors earlier in the season after he appeared in just two games for Boston.

Bard was a dominant late-inning reliever from 2009-11, but struggled after that.

“Not an easy one,” manager John Farrell said. “Given what he’s been able to do in the past and obviously dealing with the struggles with consistency that are there, unfortunately he’s in the position he’s in. He won’t be able to pitch with (Class A) Lowell until the waiver period expires, and if he’s still in the organization, which we would hope that would be the case unless some team either claims or works out a trade for him, we haven’t turned our back on him.

“And yet, we needed a roster spot and we’re hopeful that we can get Daniel back on track to the pitcher that he was here at the big league level, which was a dominant one.”

Farrell was once Bard’s pitching coach.

Swimmer making progress on Cuba-to-Florida swim

MIAMI — U.S. long-distance swimmer Diana Nyad forged ahead in the Florida Straits on Sunday on the second day of her latest bid to become the first person to swim from Cuba to the United States without a shark cage.

Nyad, 64, was “swimming strong” on Sunday afternoon and “getting a little favorable push from the current,” according to blog updates on her website (

The marathon swimmer is making her fifth attempt at the 103-mile (166 km) crossing, this time using a protective silicone mask to better protect her from the poisonous jellyfish that forced her to end one of two attempted crossings last year.

Nyad has said the custom-made mask slows her and makes it more difficult to breath, so it could take up to three days to complete the swim.

As of noon Sunday, she had swum more than 47 miles, the blog said.

Dodgers delay activating Kemp

Matt Kemp has not played for the Dodgers since July 21 and it does not look like Los Angeles will activate him for a while.

He has not a physical setback as he recovers from an ankle injury, but Kemp has struggled in his rehab assignment.

“He doesn’t feel good yet at the plate,” manager Don Mattingly told the Los Angeles Times on Sunday, “He’s not pushing us to say, ‘I want to be there tomorrow.’”

Kemp, playing for Class-A Rancho Cucamonga, is 0-for-11 with five strikeouts. He has hit the ball out of the infield only once in three games.

Rancho Cucamonga is in position to make the playoffs — the season ends on Monday — and Mattingly said Kemp might remain with the Quakes or go to the Arizona Instructional League.

Kluwe tweets that Raiders cut him

Punter Chris Kluwe announced on Twitter that he was released by the Oakland Raiders on Sunday.

That means the team will go with Marquette King as its punter.

“Thanks to everyone at the Raiders for the opportunity this preseason,” Kluwe wrote. “It was a blast. @MarquetteKing’s got a bright future with you guys!”

Kluwe spent the 2005-12 seasons with the Minnesota Vikings before coming to Oakland.

Kluwe played in 127 games in his eight years with Minnesota. He holds the franchise record with a 44.4-yard average (623 punts, 27,683 yards). His net average of 37.2 yards is second in Vikings history.

“Feel like we both had a pretty strong preseason,” Kluwe wrote. “No regrets.”

IndyCar places Vautier on probation

IndyCar officials placed driver Tristan Vautier on probation and fined him $10,000 on Sunday.

Vautier violated rules and when his car made contact with Graham Rahal’s disabled car under a waving yellow flag condition during Saturday’s Grand Prix of Baltimore qualifying, according to IndyCar.

Rule is defined as “engaging in reckless, careless, and/or overly aggressive actions or unsportsmanlike behavior toward other members while rule states “a waved yellow means reduce speed, passing not permitted, be prepared to change direction or stop, a hazard wholly or partially blocking the track.”

Vautier’s probation runs through the remainder of the series season. He can appeal the discipline.

Cowboys trade DL Lissemore to Chargers

The Dallas Cowboys traded defensive lineman Sean Lissemore to the San Diego Chargers for a 2015 seventh-round draft pick, reported Sunday.

Lissemore, a defensive end also capable of playing inside at nose tackle, was signed to a three-year, $6 million contract extension a year ago.

After a strong 2011 season, he was slowed by a high ankle sprain for about half of last year. He became more expendable this year with the defense’s change from the 3-4 alignment to the Tampa 2 scheme under new defensive coordinator Monte Kiffin.

Lissemore could be a better fit for the Chargers, who employ the 3-4 defense and is expected to be a backup.

Braves recall Garcia to bolster staff

The Atlanta Braves on Sunday promoted veteran right-handed pitcher Freddy Garcia.

Manager Fredi Gonzalez said Garcia will be used mainly out of the bullpen, although he could make a spot start down the stretch.

Atlanta acquired Garcia via a waiver trade with the Baltimore Orioles on Aug. 23. In 11 games with Baltimore, he compiled a 3-5 mark with 5.77 ERA.

The 36-year-old Garcia has a 155-106 career record over 15 seasons.

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