Mattingly, Dodgers players
happy with new ownership
Los Angeles Dodgers players said they were happy and relieved Wednesday about the pending sale of the team to an ownership group that includes former Lakers star Magic Johnson.
“Great day for the Dodgers,” said center fielder Matt Kemp, the runner-up for National League Most Valuable Player last season. “As Magic used to say, the Dodgers were the team that used to run L.A. Definitely, we were going to have more fans out there this year anyway. Now, there’s another reason to have the fans turn out.”
The deal to sell the franchise for a record $2 billion was revealed Tuesday night, just hours after Major League Baseball owners approved three finalists for an intended auction. Besides Johnson, the ownership group includes longtime baseball executive Stan Kasten.
Players said they were relieved that the search for an owner had finally been resolved and that they were hopeful the franchise can move forward amid newfound stability.
Also: Omar Vizquel was added to the Toronto Blue Jays’ roster, less than a month before his 45th birthday, making the backup infielder the oldest active position player in the major leagues. The 11-time Gold Glove winner, who turns 45 on April 24, is batting .433 in 15 spring games.
Boston Red Sox reliever Chris Carpenter, obtained from the Chicago Cubs as partial compensation for general manager Theo Epstein, said he will have elbow surgery. Carpenter said on Twitter that Dr. James Andrews will remove a bone spur from his elbow.
The Minnesota Twins released injured right-hander Joel Zumaya. The reliever was trying to revive his career after missing the entire 2011 season because of elbow problems.
49ers, ex-Giants running back
Jacobs agree on one-year deal
Veteran running back Brandon Jacobs and the San Francisco 49ers have agreed to terms on a one-year deal, a person with knowledge of the deal told The Associated Press.
ESPN first reported Jacobs would join the NFC West champion 49ers. Jacobs was released March 9 by the New York Giants after he failed to reach agreement on a restructured deal.
Also: The Minnesota Vikings re-signed receiver Devin Aromashodu to a one-year deal. In his first season with the Vikings last year, Aromashodu caught 26 passes for 468 yards and three touchdowns.
Ronde Barber signed a one-year contract to return to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers for his 16th NFL season. The veteran cornerback has started every game with the Bucs since Week 10 in 1999 — the longest active streak in the NFL.
The Chicago Bears and wide receiver Devin Thomas agreed to a one-year contract. Thomas has 43 receptions for 482 yards in four seasons with Washington, Carolina and the Giants.
Baylor’s Griner leads finalists
for women’s Wooden Award
Brittney Griner of Baylor, Nnemkadi Ogwumike of Stanford and Skylar Diggins of Notre Dame are among the finalists for the John R. Wooden Award given to the top women’s college basketball player.
Griner and Ogwumike were finalists last year, when Maya Moore of Connecticut won for the second time. The other finalists are Elena Delle Donne of Delaware and Julie Wojta of Wisconsin-Green Bay.
The winner will be announced April 6.
Also: Former Maryland quarterback Danny O’Brien committed to playing for Wisconsin, marking the second year in a row the Badgers have snapped up a high-profile quarterback who was looking to switch schools. O’Brien fills a gap for the Badgers after the departure of Russell Wilson, who left North Carolina State for Wisconsin.
The University of Pacific will return to the West Coast Conference, more than four decades after leaving the league. Pacific formally accepted an invitation to leave the Big West Conference and become the 10th school in the WCC.
Talib Zanna scored 14 points as host Pittsburgh defeated Washington State 57-53 to tie the best-of-3 College Basketball Invitational championship series at one game each. The Panthers (21-17) and Cougars (19-17) will play Friday in Pittsburgh for the title.
Travis Smith came off the bench to score 17 points, including a tiebreaking 3-pointer with 90 seconds left, and Mercer (27-11) won the CollegeInsider.com Tournament by beating Utah State (21-16), 70-67.
Venus Williams, looking weary after winning three consecutive three-set matches, lost to Agnieszka Radwanska in the quarterfinals of the Sony Ericsson Open in Key Biscayne, Fla., 6-4, 6-1.
In another women’s quarterfinal, top-ranked Victoria Azarenka lost for the first time this year when she was beaten by Marion Bartoli, 6-3, 6-3. Azarenka had won 26 straight matches, claiming the Australian Open title in the process.
In the men’s quarterfinals, No. 2 seed Rafael Nadal continued his bid for his first Key Biscayne title by beating No. 6 Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, 6-2, 5-7, 6-4. His opponent Friday will be 2009 champion and fourth-seeded Andy Murray, who overcame an upset stomach and early deficit to beat No. 9 Janko Tipsarevic, 4-6, 6-3, 6-4.
Kim Clijsters has a torn hip muscle and will need four weeks off the WTA Tour. A statement from her management company said she’d been troubled with hip pains during the Sony Ericsson Open.
The UNLV women’s tennis team lost to fourth-ranked Stanford 7-0 at Fertitta Tennis Complex. Only Lucia Batta, who earlier in the day was named Mountain West Conference Women’s Tennis Player of the Week, pushed her match at No. 2 singles to three sets.
The UNLV softball team lost to Southern Utah 9-1 and 3-2 in a nonconference doubleheader at Cedar City, Utah.
After getting routed in the opener, the Rebels (17-16) kept it much closer in the second game. Samantha Henry had RBI doubles in the second and fourth innings to account for UNLV’s runs.