Advertisement
Share

The Sports Report: Max Muncy homers twice as Dodgers win

Max Muncy tosses his helmet after hitting a game-winning home run in the 10th inning Wednesday.
Max Muncy
(Associated Press)

Howdy, I’m your host, Houston Mitchell. Let’s get right to the news.

Jack Harris on the Dodgers: Max Muncy had a two-home-run, three-hit game that keyed the Dodgers’ 9-1 win over the San Francisco Giants at Dodger Stadium.

In addition to Muncy’s two solo shots — the first baseman went deep to center in the sixth inning, collecting his fifth career multi-home-run game — the Dodgers received two RBIs from Justin Turner, three hits from Corey Seager, Mookie Betts’ first RBI and scored in seven of their eight trips to the plate.

Advertisement

“Those first few innings,” starting pitcher Ross Stripling said, “it felt like we hit for 15 minutes each time.”

The offensive explosion was superfluous on a night Stripling delivered seven stellar innings. Effectively mixing high fastballs, a new-grip changeup and his other off-speed offerings, the right-hander gave up only one run (a solo homer by Jaylin Davis in the third) and struck out seven.

“He was very efficient, pitched to all the quadrants,” manager Dave Roberts said of Stripling, who threw 92 pitches and didn’t walk a batter. “He’s just such a good executor of pitches. The rhythm was really good. The seven innings was real big.”

The changeup, a pitch Stripling tinkered with during spring training and throughout the summer, was the biggest revelation, helping him retire 16 of the 17 left-handed batters he faced.

Enjoying this newsletter? Consider subscribing to the Los Angeles Times

Your support helps us deliver the news that matters most. Become a subscriber.

ANGELS

Maria Torres on the Angels: Shohei Ohtani had little choice.

His Angels teammate Jared Walsh had smashed a ball to the right side of the infield in the 10th inning of the season opener Friday night. Ohtani had been placed on second base before the inning began, in accordance with rules adopted by Major League Baseball this season to speed up extra-inning games, and he knew he had to run on contact.

Unfortunately for him, the Oakland Athletics’ Gold Glove first baseman, Matt Olson, anticipated Ohtani’s move. When the ball scorched by Walsh reached him, Olson whipped a throw across the diamond to third baseman Matt Chapman. A rundown ensued.

Advertisement

Ohtani juked left and right but couldn’t escape. He returned empty-handed to the Angels’ dugout, one of the many times they failed to capitalize on an opportunity with runners in scoring position. In the bottom of the 10th, Olson hit a grand slam to deal them a 7-3 loss.

Helene Elliott on the Angels. Click here to read.

NFL

Sam Farmer on the NFL: In a furious flurry of activity Friday, the NFL and its players’ union cleared a final hurdle to start training camps on time, agreeing to financial terms regarding a season that could be sidetracked by the COVID-19 pandemic.

After the NFL Players Assn. executive committee voted unanimously to recommend the plan, player representatives approved the changes to the collective bargaining agreement by a 29-3 vote.

Advertisement

“We have worked collaboratively to develop a comprehensive set of protocols designed to minimize risk for fans, players, and club and league personnel,” NFL commissioner Roger Goodell said in a written statement.

When it comes to evaluating players, teams are going to have to speed read — and without the benefit of preseason games, which are a casualty of the deal.

Camps across the league are due to open Tuesday, and the first four days are reserved for COVID testing. Players and coaches must test negative twice, with 72 hours between tests, in order to enter the facility the first time. The fifth and sixth days of camp will be for physical examinations, equipment fittings and virtual meetings.

CLIPPERS

Andrew Greif on the Clippers: Reserve guard Lou Williams left the NBA’s campus on the Walt Disney World resort shortly after scoring a game-high 22 points in Wednesday’s scrimmage victory against the Magic because of excused personal reasons, according to a person with knowledge of the situation but not authorized to speak publicly on the matter.

Advertisement

Williams is expected to rejoin the team soon, the person said, but his availability for the Clippers’ first seeding game July 30 against the Lakers is in jeopardy. Like center Montrezl Harrell and guard Patrick Beverley, both of whom left within the last week because of emergency family matters, Williams will be required to clear quarantine upon his return. That process could last between four and 10 days depending on whether Williams returns negative tests for every day that he is gone, according to league rules.

That will likely lead to disjointed preparation for their two remaining scrimmages, Wednesday and Monday, and the eight seeding games that follow, though that wouldn’t be anything new for a team whose injuries forced coach Doc Rivers to use a league-high 29 starting lineups in 64 games.

USC

Ryan Kartje on USC: While the coronavirus continues to surge through Southern California, the latest round of testing on USC’s campus yielded some hopeful results.

USC reported zero positive cases out of 120 tests this week, with two weeks remaining until the tentative start of its fall football camp. It’s the first round of testing conducted at USC that’s yielded zero positive tests since athletes began returning to campus in mid-June.

Advertisement

The athletic department has conducted 437 total tests, with seven positives.

LAKERS

Jeanette Marantos on a special tribute to Kobe Bryant: Mike Asner wasn’t thinking of quarantines when he created KobeMural.com. He was just a bereaved fan moved by the dozens of tribute murals that suddenly appeared around Southern California after the Jan. 26 helicopter crash that killed his longtime hero, Kobe Bryant, and eight others, including Bryant’s 13-year-old daughter, Gianna.

“I started seeing all these murals going up — the photos were all over Instagram — and they needed somebody to organize them,” said Asner, a digital marketing director who happened to be between jobs in February. “I had the time, and I decided I needed to build a map for people to find them.”

The murals helped bring people together in their grief, Asner said. Now, thanks to @kobemural Instagram and the KobeMural website Asner created to map the murals, the wall-size tributes can provide another outlet for people who are tired of Netflix or of staying inside but fear going out in public.

Advertisement

TODAY’S LOCAL MAJOR SPORTS SCHEDULE

All times Pacific.

San Francisco at Dodgers, 1 p.m., Fox, AM 570

Angels at Oakland, 1 p.m., FSW, KLAA 830

THIS DATE IN SPORTS

Edwin Moses of the United States set a world record in the 400-meter hurdles on this date in 1976 at the Summer Games in Montreal when he won the gold medal in 47.63 seconds.

Advertisement

Moses, from Dayton, Ohio, had been around track and field for seven years but didn’t find success until he took up the hurdles full-time in March.

Four months later, he finished ahead of fellow American Michael Shine of Youngsville, Pa., and Yevgeniy Gavrilenko of the Soviet Union in the Olympics.

“Maybe it was about time,” Moses said, “that something came around.”

Moses broke the record of 47.82 set by Uganda’s John Akii-Bua in Munich in 1972. He would dominate the event for more than a decade, winning another gold medal at the 1984 Games in Los Angeles.

Advertisement

Here is a look at memorable games and outstanding sports performances on this date:

1941 — Lefty Grove of the Boston Red Sox wins his 300th and last game when he beats the Cleveland Indians 10-6 at Fenway Park. Grove was the 12th pitcher to record 300 wins and the second left-hander. He retired at the end of the season with a record of 300-141 in 17 seasons with the Red Sox and Philadelphia Athletics. Grove, who was beset by injuries for much of the season, set the side down in order in the ninth inning, including getting Lou Boudreau to fly out to Dom DiMaggio in center field to end the game.

1956 — In a race in which only win betting is allowed, Swaps sets an American record in the 1 5/8-mile $100,000 Sunset Handicap at Hollywood Park. Swaps, carrying a high weight of 130 pounds, ran the course surrounding the Lakes and Flowers in 2:381/5, coasting to a 4¼-length victory over eight other horses.

1956 — Jack Burke Jr. defeats Ted Kroll 3 and 2 in the final round to win the PGA Championship at Blue Hill Country Club in Canton, Mass. It was Burke’s second major tournament victory after he won the Masters in April. He was the second player to win the Masters and PGA Championship in the same year, joining Sam Snead in 1949. Defending champion Doug Ford was eliminated in the third round when he lost to Walter Burkemo 5 and 3.

Advertisement

1982 — Janet Anderson shoots a final-round 68 to finish six strokes ahead of four players and win the U.S. Women’s Open golf championship at Del Paso Country Club in Sacramento. It is the only victory of her LPGA career. Anderson, who attended Slippery Rock Teachers College, finished ahead of Beth Daniel, Sandra Haynie, JoAnne Carner and Donna White, all of whom tied for second place.

2010 — Alberto Contador, 27, of Spain wins the Tour de France for the third time in four years when he seals the victory in the penultimate stage by holding off a challenge from Andy Schleck of Luxembourg in a time trial. Contador, nicknamed “Pistolero” for his trademark gesture of cocking his fingers like a gun, uses a water pistol to soak photographers at the race’s end in Paris.

2010 — Jamie McMurray’s victory in NASCAR’s Brickyard 400 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway gives owner Chip Ganassi the first team triple crown in American auto racing. Ganassi’s cars won the Daytona 500, the Indianapolis 500 and the Brickyard 400 in the same year. McMurray drove the season-opening Daytona 500 for Ganassi’s NASCAR team in February, and driver Dario Franchitti took the Indy 500 for Ganassi’s IndyCar Series team in May.

2011 — The NFL Players Assn. executive board and 32 team representatives vote unanimously to approve the terms of a collective bargaining agreement with the owners that ends a 4½-month lockout. Among the issues embraced in the 10-year pact was the main issue of the work stoppage — how to divide the $9 billion the NFL takes in each year.

Advertisement

2011 — Taylor Hoagland hits a two-run home run, Valerie Arioto and Megan Langenfeld collect RBI singles, and the United States beats Japan 6-4 to win its fifth consecutive World Cup of Softball championship in Oklahoma City. Jordan Taylor retired the first eight batters she faced and carried a no-hitter into the fifth inning. She never let the Americans fall behind after they grabbed a 2-0 lead in the first inning without needing a hit.

2015 — Maya Moore of the Minnesota Lynx scores 30 points to lead the West to a 117-112 victory over the East in the WNBA All-Star game in Uncasville, Conn. Moore, the league’s reigning most valuable player, had eight consecutive points in the final two minutes that turned a one-point deficit into a 113-106 advantage. After a basket by the East cut the lead to four, Moore hit a deep three-pointer to seal the victory.

AND FINALLY

Edwin Moses sets a world record at the 1976 Olympics. Watch it here.

Until next time...

That concludes today’s newsletter. If you have any feedback, ideas for improvement or things you’d like to see, email me at houston.mitchell@latimes.com, and follow me on Twitter at @latimeshouston. To get this newsletter in your inbox, click here.

Advertisement


Advertisement