A look at the sports news making headlines today, Monday, July 21.
Gray matter works for Athletics…All 3 NL division races tied
The Oakland Athletics pelted Baltimore 10-2 to take two of three in the matchup of division leaders in their final regular-season meeting. Sonny Gray struck out eight to win his fifth straight decision and improve to 11-3.
Oakland had 15 hits, chasing starter Kevin Gausman (4-3) in the fifth before beating up Baltimore’s bullpen the rest of the way.
Eric O’Flaherty tossed 1 1/3 scoreless innings and Sean Doolittle pitched a perfect ninth to help Oakland finish 4-2 against the Orioles this season.
Oakland has the best record in baseball at 61-37.
In other Sunday baseball:
Belt heads to DL…Astros’ Springer expects to play Tuesday
Giants first baseman Brandon Belt will go on either the seven-day or 15-day disabled list because of a concussion. He was struck by a ball in the face while fielding during batting practice Saturday. Manager Bruce Bochy says tests have confirmed the concussion.
In other baseball injury news, Houston outfielder George Springer sat out the Astros’ 11-7 win over the Chicago White Sox because of soreness in his right quad and knee. He expects to play Tuesday when the Astros begin a three-game series at Oakland. The 24-year-old rookie hurt his knee earlier this month when he crashed into the wall making a catch against Texas. Springer leads the Astros with 20 home runs.
McIlroy gets third major
At the age of 25 Northern Ireland’s Rory McIlroy now has three major championships. He closed out the British Open with a 1-under 71 to finish the tournament in first at 17-under-par, two shots in front of Ricky Fowler and Sergio Garcia. McIlroy won the third major of the year leading after every round. He began the fourth round leading by six shots and never let anyone closer than two shots.
Garcia put up the biggest fight. He was two shots behind when he left a shot in the pot bunker right of the 15th green and made bogey. Birdies on two of the last three holes were not enough to close the gap.
McIlroy won the 2011 U.S. Open and the 2012 PGA Championship, which means he has only failed to win the Masters for a personal Grand Slam. He joins Jack Nicklaus and Tiger Woods as the only players with three different majors at age 25 or younger. He will go to the Masters next spring trying to become only the sixth player to win all four of golf’s biggest events.
Defending British Open champ Phil Mickelson finished with a 4-under 68 to complete play at 5-under while Woods had a final-round 3-over 75 to finish at plus-6. Tom Watson finished the week with a 4-under score in the final round to finish the tournament at 1-over.
Ko takes first
Lydia Ko is the winner of the LPGA’s Marathon Classic in Ohio. She closed out with a 6-under-65 to finish 15 shots under par, one shot in front of So Yeon Ryu. American Cristie Kerr was third at minus-12. Women’s British Open winner Mo Martin finished five shots off the pace.
Laura Diaz skied to a 4-over-75 with four bogeys to finish 7-under, tied for 18th.
Ex-Redskins QB wins in Tahoe
Former Washington Super Bowl winning QB Mark Rypien beat out Jeremy Roenick and Annika Sorenstam to win the weather-delayed American Century Celebrity Golf Championship.
Rypien took the title for the first time since winning the inaugural event in 1990.
Rosberg wins another race
Germany’s Nico Rosberg won the German Grand Prix to stretch his lead in the Formula One drivers’ championship over Mercedes teammate Lewis Hamilton, who finished third after starting 20th. Hamilton, who crashed in qualifying and survived a number of scrapes throughout the race, had a tremendous race to clinch a spot on the podium.
Four-time defending World Champion Sebastian Vettel was fourth, ahead of Ferrari’s Fernando Alonso, who won a battle with Red Bull’s Daniel Ricciardo for fifth.
Bourdais and Conway win in Toronto
IndyCar’s weekend doubleheader in Toronto was crammed into one day because Saturday’s race was called because of rain.
In the first race, Sebastien Bourdais dominated from the pole to cruise to his first open wheel victory since 2007. The race was shortened to 65 laps after rain wiped out yesterday’s race. Bourdais has 32 career open wheel wins and this is his first in 53 races under the IndyCar banner.
Mike Conway won the second for his second win of the season. Conway was fifth on the restart, but his dry tires were far superior to the drivers still racing on rain tires. He quickly moved through the field and into the lead.
Pats get some insurance for Gronk
Three days before training camp opens, the New England Patriots have signed veteran tight end Nate Byham. The 26-year-old Byham spent the past two seasons with Tampa Bay after his first two seasons with San Francisco.
The Patriots have been seeking depth at tight end going into training camp. Rob Gronkowski was a limited participant in minicamp last month as he continued his comeback from a season-ending knee injury last year.
Nibali remains the man to beat
Alexander Kristoff of Norway won the 15th stage of the Tour de France while overall leader Vincenzo Nibali of Italy finished in the main pack to keep the overall lead. After two days in the Alps, the 15th stage provided some relief over a flat 138 miles. Nibali is 4:37 ahead of second place Alejandro Valverde of Spain.