Bosox fire Cora
UNDATED (AP) — The fallout from the Houston Astros’ sign-stealing evidence has reached the Boston Red Sox.
The Bosox have fired manager Alex Cora a day after baseball Commissioner Rob Manfred implicated him in the sport's sign-stealing scandal. Cora was the Astros’ bench coach when they won the 2017 World Series and led Boston to the title the following year in his first season as manager.
Manfred's nine-page report investigating sign-stealing by the Astros mentioned Cora 11 times, saying Cora was among those who “originated and executed” aspects of the cheating scheme. Manfred explained that the team used a center field camera to decode catchers' signals to pitchers and banged on a trash can with a bat or massage gun near the dugout to let hitters know which pitch was coming.
MLB had also been investigating allegations the Red Sox had stolen signs en route to their 2018 World Series championship.
Cora’s dismissal comes a day after Astros manager AJ Hinch and GM Jeff Luhnow (LOO’-now) were fired by the ballclub. Hinch and Luhnow let go an hour after Manfred suspended them for the 2020 season for their role in the cheating scheme.
Donaldson picks Twins
UNDATED (AP) — Free agent Josh Donaldson has found a landing spot.
A personal familiar with the deal says the Minnesota Twins have worked out a four-year, $92 million contract with the third baseman and 2015 American League MVP.
The 34-year-old Donaldson returned after an injury-spoiled 2018 to bat .259 with 37 homers, 94 RBIs and a .900 OPS for the Atlanta Braves last season.
The deal likely means a position change for third baseman Miguel Sano (sah-NOH’), who just finalized his three-year, $30 million contract with Minnesota on Tuesday. Sano has seen action at first base and could replace the departed CJ Kron at the position.
In other MLB moves:
The Phils have designated Odubel (oh-DOO’-bul) Herrera for assignment to make roster room for fellow outfielder Nick Martini, who was acquired off waivers from Miami. Herrera set career highs with 22 home runs and 71 RBIs in 2018, but he lost his starting job last year and was suspended under Major League Baseball's domestic violence policy following his arrest at a casino in Atlantic City. Herrera batting .222 in 39 games last season.
— Daniel Hudson’s two-year, $11 million package with the Nationals has been finalized. Hudson was 9-3 with a 2.47 ERA during the regular season last year before going 4-for-4 in save opportunities for the World Series champs.
— The Angels have picked up reliever Matt Andriese from the Diamondbacks for minor league pitcher Jeremy Beasley. Andriese had a 5-5 record last season and a 4.71 ERA in 54 appearances for Arizona in 2019.
— The Marlins have traded outfielder Austin Dean to the Cardinals for 18-year-old minor league outfielder Diowill Burgos. Dean batted .225 for Miami in 64 games last year and hit .337 with 18 home runs for Triple-A New Orleans.
TOP 25 MEN’S BASKETBALL-SCHEDULE
Clemson stuns Duke
UNDATED (AP) — It’s been almost 19 years since Clemson was able to celebrate a win and great as this one.
Aamir Simms poured in a career-high 25 points in the Tigers’ 79-72 upset of No. 3 Duke. It was the highest-profile upset for the Tigers since beating No. 1 North Carolina on their home court in February 2001.
The Blue Devils led 62-59 with 6:40 remaining before Clemson took control with a 14-3 run, including eight points from Simms.
Mack scored 22 points on 10-of-14 shooting for the Tigers, who were coming off a win at North Carolina.
Vernon Carey Jr. scored 20 points for the 15-2 Blue Devils, who hadn’t lost since a stunning home defeat to Stephen F. Austin in November.
In other top-25 finals:
— No. 11 Louisville was able to pull out a 72-68 win against Pittsburgh after Panthers forward Terrell Brown was called for a foul while hitting a potential game-tying bucket with 21 seconds left. Jordan Nwora (WOHR’-uh) led the Cardinals with 14 points and Dwayne Sutton finished with 13 points and nine rebounds.
— Oba Toppin dropped in 24 points and grabbed eight rebounds as No. 15 Dayton downed VCU, 79-65. Jalen Crutcher chipped in 20 points and Trey Landers added 16 with nine boards for the 15-2 Flyers.
— Ohio State’s four-game losing streak is over after C.J. Walker scored 18 points to lead the 21st-ranked Buckeyes past Nebraska, 80-68. D.J. Carton had 13 points and five assists for OSU, which played without suspended guards Luther Muhammad and Duane Washington Jr.
— No. 23 Texas Tech was a 77-63 winner against Kansas State behind Kyler Edwards’ 24 points. Davide Moretti finished with 13 points and Kevin McCullar added 10 off the bench for the Red Raiders.
Jazz get 10th straight win
UNDATED (AP) — The Utah Jazz have run their winning streak into double-digits.
Joe Ingles matched his career high with 27 points as the Jazz picked up their 10th straight win, 118-107 over the Nets in Brooklyn. Rudy Gobert (goh-BEHR’) had 22 points and 18 rebounds for Utah, while Donovan Mitchell contributed 14 of his 25 points in the fourth quarter after missing the team’s previous game due to illness.
Bojan (BOY’-ahn) Bogdanovic had 18 for the Jazz, who opened a 20-point lead and held off numerous Brooklyn rallies.
Nets guard Kyrie Irving had 32 points and a season-high 11 assists in his second game back from a shoulder injury.
Checking out Tuesday’s other NBA action:
— Trae Young scored 21 of his 36 points in the fourth quarter as the Hawks downed the Suns, 123-110 to end a four-game skid. Young got help from backcourt partner Kevin Huerter (HUR’-tur), who scored 23 points and set career highs with 15 rebounds and eight assists.
Crosby returns to Penguins’ lineup
UNDATED (AP) — Sid the Kid was back in uniform for the Pittsburgh Penguins tonight, and he delivered his most productive game of the season.
Pens captain Sidney Crosby delivered a goal and three assists in a 7-3 trouncing of the Wild. He needed less than eight minutes to pick up his first point since before Halloween when he assisted on Evgeni Malkin's first goal of the night 7:57 into the game.
He was playing for the first time since missing 28 games with an abdominal injury that required surgery. Crosby’s previous season-high for points was three against the Flyers on Oct. 29.
Malkin finished with two goals and an assist as the Pens improved to 12-2-1 in their last 15 games to pull within four points of the Metropolitan Division-leading Capitals.
Elsewhere on NHL ice:
— Elvis Merzlikins (murz-LIH’-kihnz) recorded his second consecutive shutout in leading the Blue Jackets to their fourth win in five games, 3-0 over the Bruins. Alexander Wennberg, Kevin Stenlund and Riley Nash provided the goals to help Merzlikins win for the sixth time in his last eight starts.
— Brock Nelson scored twice and was one of seven Islanders to collect two points in an 8-2 dismantling of the Red Wings. Anthony Beauvillier (boh-VIH’-lee-ay), Leo Komarov (KAH’-mah-rahv), Jordan Eberle and Anders Lee each had a goal and an assist as the Islanders bounced back from Monday’s 6-2 loss to the Rangers.
— Steven Stamkos scored once in regulation and furnished the deciding shootout goal to send the Lightning to their 11th victory in 12 games, 4-3 against the Kings. Tampa Bay was in danger of dropping its second straight since a 10-game winning streak before Nikita Kucherov (KOO’-cheh-rahv) tallied with 1:15 left in regulation.
— The Maple Leafs routed the Devils, 7-4 as Auston Matthews registered his first hat trick since getting four goals in his NHL debut over three years ago. John Tavares added a goal and two assists in Toronto’s first win in four games.
— Jack Eichel (EYE’-kul) provided the go-ahead goal on an end-to-end rush 7:57 into the third period of the Sabres' 4-2 victory against the Golden Knights. Eichel tied a career high with his 28th goal and became the first Buffalo player in 27 years to reach 60 points in 46 or fewer games.
— The Blackhawks erased an early 2-0 deficit and beat the Senators, 3-2 on an overtime goal by Jonathan Toews (tayvz). Dominik Kubalik (koo-BAH’-lihk) tied the game early in the third period with his second goal of the game and seventh in five games.
Caps’ Backstrom gets extension
UNSATED — Capitals forward Nicklas Backstrom has accepted a five-year, $46 extension that runs through the 2024-25 season and will count $9.2 million annually toward the salary cap.
The fourth player taken in the 2006 draft has nine goals and 35 points in 39 games this season. He’s scored at least 71 points in each of his previous six seasons and has 908 in 934 career games.
In other NHL news:
— Flyers general Chuck Fletcher expects center Nolan Patrick to return from a migraine disorder and play this season. The second player taken in the 2017 draft has been sidelined all season because of his condition after producing in two seasons with the Philadelphia.
— Sabres center Tage (tayj) Thompson will miss the remainder of the season following surgery on his right shoulder. The Sabres say Thompson will require between five and six months of recovery time.
Kuechly, Gates retire
UNDATED (AP) — A couple of Pro Bowl selections have decided to leave the NFL
Panthers linebacker Luke Kuechly (KEEK’-lee) is retiring after eight seasons, announcing in a video posted on the team’s website that he feels now is the right chance to move on.
Kuechly was selected to seven Pro Bowls and was a first-team All-Pro five times. However, he suffered three concussions during his career, which may have led to his decision.
Tight end Antonio Gates has formally announced his retirement after a 16-year NFL career spent entirely with the Chargers.
He holds the league record for tight ends with 116 touchdown catches, doing it without playing a down of college football. Gates didn’t play last season and is the Chargers’ all-time leader for TDs, receptions and receiving yards, grabbing 955 passes for 11,841 yards.
Epenesa turning pro
IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) — Iowa is losing one of its top defensive linemen to the NFL draft a year early.
Defensive end A.J. Epenesa posted his decision on his Instagram page Tuesday, writing that his time with the Hawkeyes was everything he hoped it would be. He was an Associated Press second-team All-American and an AP All-Big Ten first-team pick this past season, recording 11.5 sacks to become the first Hawkeye to hit double-figures in that category in consecutive seasons since 2002-03. Epenesa paced the Big Ten with 10.5 sacks as a backup in 2018.
Rose punished for pen toss
NEW YORK (AP) — Detroit Pistons guard Derrick Rose has been fined $25,000 by the NBA for tossing a pen across the court during the end of Monday night’s loss to New Orleans.
Rose sat slumped on a courtside table and flung the pen into the stands during a stoppage of play with 37 seconds left in overtime. He finished with 23 points and eight assists, but he also had two turnovers in the final 90 seconds and missed a potential game-winning shot.
PENN STATE FOOTBALL-HAZING LAWSUIT
Ex-player sues Penn State over football hazing allegations
HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) — A former Penn State football player claims in a lawsuit that Nittany Lions players hazed him and other younger teammates by imitating sexual acts in the shower and invoking Jerry Sandusky's name.
The player filed the lawsuit Monday in Pennsylvania federal court against the university, head coach James Franklin and one former teammate.
According to the complaint, the school's own investigation found the ex-teammate had committed “prohibited behavior.” Penn State says a local district attorney declined to prosecute.
The Associated Press is not identifying the name of the accuser because he hasn't spoken publicly on the matter.