The Sports Report: There’s nothing common about Mike Trout, including his back injury

Mike Trout
Mike Trout
(Ashley Landis / Associated Press)
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Howdy, I’m your host, Houston Mitchell. Let’s get right to the news.

From Sarah Valenzuela: The source of Angels star Mike Trout’s back injury has a more specific name: costovertebral dysfunction, the team said Wednesday.

While Trout still isn’t sure how he got it, he isn’t worried.

“Every day it’s improving,” he told reporters in Kansas City, Mo., after the Angels’ 4-0 win against the Royals. “I feel really good today.”

Asked if he would play again this season, Trout said, “Of course. That’s my goal. ... The last two days have been a huge step.

“I think it’s a little exaggeration,” he continued, explaining that his phone was blowing up with people concerned about whether he could play again. “I appreciate all the prayer requests, but my career isn’t over.”


The condition, as sports injuries go, isn’t common. Robert Watkins, the spinal surgeon who checked on Trout, has not seen the injury very much, Angels athletic trainer Mike Frostad told reporters Wednesday.

“And for it to happen in a baseball player,” Frostad said, “we just have to take into consideration what he puts himself through with hitting, swinging on a daily basis, just getting prepared, and then also playing in the outfield.”

Dr. Neel Anand, the director of spine trauma at Cedars-Sinai Spine Center in Los Angeles, told The Los Angeles Times that the injury term generally describes a disruption, dislocation or movement at the joint between the rib and the vertebral body.

Though uncommon, the injury is seen more in athletes in contact sports, who “get hit in the ribcage or pummeled sideways,” according to Anand.


Janson Junk shuts down Royals as Angels cruise to take series

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From Steve Henson: The difference was night and day.

After scoring only four runs in two losses to the lowly Washington Nationals, the Dodgers took aim just after high noon Wednesday and immediately unloaded on left-hander Patrick Corbin in a 7-1 victory.

They scored six first-inning runs, stringing together six consecutive hits with two out, effectively putting the game out of reach before many in the sun-drenched crowd had taken their seats at Dodger Stadium.


The beneficiary was starter Andrew Heaney, who pitched four scoreless innings in his first start in more than two months. His ERA in four starts this season is an impeccable 0.47. Effectiveness seems a given with Heaney, who signed a one-year, $8-million deal with the Dodgers during the offseason.

More important will be how Heaney feels Thursday and beyond. Shoulder discomfort sidelined him for two months after his first two starts of the season, and one start into his return shoulder discomfort sidelined him for another five weeks.


Dodgers should trade for Juan Soto and avoid mistake Angels made with Mike Trout


From Gary Klein: New Rams receiver Allen Robinson is one of the NFL’s best at beating defenders to catch so-called “50-50” balls. The eight-year veteran routinely out-leaps, out-muscles or out-finesses cornerbacks.

But rookie Derion Kendrick apparently is not intimidated by any receiver’s reputation and resume.

After four training camp practices, Kendrick has established himself as a player to watch, making numerous plays, several while covering Robinson.


The trend continued Wednesday during a full-squad drill when Kendrick broke up a laser pass from quarterback Matthew Stafford to Robinson in the front of the end zone. Later, he knocked away a 50-50 ball intended for Robinson in the back corner of the end zone.

“He’s playing hard and he’s a good competitor — and that’s what you want a far as young guys, veterans, whoever,” Robinson said. “You want that competition in training camp. That’s what gets you ready for the season.”


From Jeff Miller: The Chargers reopened for business Wednesday in Costa Mesa, though safety Derwin James Jr. sat out for business reasons.

The 2021 Pro Bowl selection won’t practice during training camp until his contract situation is settled, coach Brandon Staley said.

James was on the field with his teammates but did not participate in drills.

He is eligible for an extension, and Staley expressed optimism that a deal would be done soon.

“I think there’s full respect on both sides,” Staley said. “They know how much we love Derwin. Derwin knows how much we love him. We’re just working through that process right now. We’re gonna let it take shape. When it does, he’ll be out there.”



Once called ‘Pooh Bear,’ Derwin James Jr.’s Florida legacy began with famous father

Did Chargers do enough to fix defense? Many questions to consider as camp opens


American basketball star Brittney Griner testified at her drug possession trial in Russia that an interpreter translated only a fraction of what was said as she was being questioning after her detention at Moscow’s airport in February and that officials told her to sign documents without explaining what they said.

In her first testimony in the trial under questioning from the prosecution, Griner also said thay besides the poor translation at the airport, she received neither an explanation of her rights nor access to a lawyer during the initial hours of her detention. She said she used a translation app on her phone to get the basic idea of what she was told.

Griner has been held since mid-February after police said they found vape cartridges containing cannabis oil in her luggage. She has pleaded guilty to the charges but says she had no criminal intent in bringing them into the country and packed in haste for her return to the U.S. after playing in a Russian basketball league during the WNBA’s offseason.


1913 — The United States wins its first Davis Cup since 1902 by beating Britain three matches to two.


1928 — The Summer Olympics open in Amsterdam and the Olympic flame is lit for the first time.

1929 — The Chicago Cardinals become the first NFL team to train out of state, holding camp in Michigan.

1972 — The American Basketball Assn, announces that San Diego will receive a franchise and the NBA’s Buffalo Braves relocate to San Diego and are renamed the San Diego Clippers.

1972 — The Dallas Cowboys beat the College All-Stars in Chicago 20-7.

1984 — The Summer Olympics open in Los Angeles with a record 140 nations competing. The Soviet Union and 13 Communist allies, including Cuba and East Germany, boycott the games.

1987 — Laura Davies shoots a 1-under 71 to defeat Ayako Okamoto and JoAnne Carner in an 18-hole playoff to win the U.S. Women’s Open.

1987 — Angel Cordero Jr. becomes the fourth U.S. jockey to win 6,000 races when he rides Lost Kitty to victory at Monmouth Park, N.J.


1991 — Dennis Martinez pitches a perfect game for the Montreal Expos, who beat the Dodgers 2-0.

1992 — American Mike Barrowman sets a world record in winning the 200-meter breaststroke, and Russian Evgueni Sadovyi becomes the Summer Olympics’ first triple gold medalist, also smashing a world record in the men’s 400-meter freestyle.

1994 — On the night baseball players set an Aug. 12 strike date, Kenny Rogers of the Texas Rangers pitches a perfect game for a 4-0 victory over the Angels.

2000 — Blaine Wilson, America’s pre-eminent gymnast, wins his fifth straight championship in St. Louis. He becomes the first gymnast to win five straight national titles since George Wheeler did it from 1937-41.

2009 — Germany’s Paul Biedermann hands Michael Phelps his first major individual loss in four years, setting a world record in the 200-meter freestyle at the world championships in Rome. Phelps, a body length behind, loses for the first time in a major international meet since Ian Crocker beat him in the 100 butterfly final at the 2005 worlds.

2011 — Ryan Lochte celebrates the first world record set since high-tech bodysuits were banned 1 1/2 years ago. Lochte edges Michael Phelps in 200-meter individual medley at the world championships at Shanghai.


2013 — Brek Shea scores less than a minute after entering the game as a second-half substitute, giving the United States a 1-0 victory over Panama in the Gold Cup final. It’s the fifth Gold Cup title for the Americans but their first since 2007.

2016 — Mirim Lee shoots a 10-under 62 to match the Women’s British Open record and take a three-stroke lead in the major championship at tree-lined Woburn (England) Golf Club.

2016 — Stephan Jaeger shoots a 12-under 58 in the Tour’s Ellie Mae Classic in Hayward, Calif., for the lowest score in major tour play. The German finishes with a 10-foot birdie putt.

2019 — 22-year-old Egan Bernal becomes the first Colombian and Latin American cyclist to win the Tour de France.

Compiled by the Associated Press

And finally

The Opening Ceremony for the 1984 Summer Olympics. Watch and listen here. Dennis Martinez pitches a perfect game. Watch and listen here.


Until next time...

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