Luis Castillo’s pregame home-run hitting contest with teammate Jose Reyes paid off in a big way Saturday night. Castillo went deep for the first time in more than a year, David Wright hit a tiebreaking two-run double and the surging New York Mets beat the Washington Nationals 7-4. “I don’t know what’s going on,” said Castillo, who hadn’t homered since July 16, 2006, a span of 674 at-bats.
Gabe Gross took advantage of an extra pitch, and Geoff Jenkins did likewise on a bad pitch. Together they helped the Milwaukee Brewers snap a five-game skid. Gross and Jenkins each hit three-run homers Saturday night, leading Milwaukee past the Cincinnati Reds 8-4 and keeping the Brewers within a half-game of NL Central-leading Chicago, which defeated St.
For Barry Bonds, solid footing led to solid contact — and another mammoth home run. Bonds extended baseball’s home run record to 760 with a two-run shot in the fifth inning off Rick VandenHurk, putting the San Francisco Giants ahead to stay in their 4-3 win over the Florida Marlins on Saturday night.
Tim Couch’s return to the NFL lasted nearly three weeks. The Jacksonville Jaguars released the former top draft pick Saturday after a handful of practices and one preseason game. Couch, who hadn’t played in the NFL since the 2004 preseason, wanted a chance to revive his career following two shoulder operations.
It’s up to Michael Vick now. His last two co-defendants pleaded guilty Friday and implicated Vick in bankrolling gambling on dogfights. One of them said the Atlanta Falcons quarterback helped drown or hang dogs that didn’t do well. With his NFL career in jeopardy and a superseding indictment adding more charges in the works, that left Vick with a hard choice: Cutting his own deal to hold jail time…
By Bruce Martin PA SportsTicker Contributing Editor
By Bruce Martin
Daryle Ward can stop worrying about hitting that first home run for the Chicago Cubs. Ward hit a grand slam in the third inning and Derrek Lee had three hits to help Chicago beat the St. Louis Cardinals 5-3 Saturday. “I’ve been trying to do everything I can to get my first one,” Ward said. “I tried different T-shirts and everything and I finally got one and it came at a pretty good spot.” Sean…
Roger Clemens kept giving up hits and getting out of jams. Pitching in a tight pennant race at 45 years old, he still has that heater when he needs it. Clemens won in his return from a suspension and Bobby Abreu hit a go-ahead homer that clanked off the foul pole, carrying the New York Yankees to a 5-2 victory Saturday over the Detroit Tigers.
Outfielder Jermaine Dye agreed to a two-year, $22 million contract extension Saturday to stay with the Chicago White Sox through the 2009 season. There is also a mutual option for 2010. Dye, the MVP of the 2005 World Series, could have been a free agent at the end of this season. Dye will receive $9.5 million in 2008 and $11.5 million in 2009.
The Washington Redskins’ first-string offense finally scored in a preseason game, albeit without the first-string quarterback. With Jason Campbell on the sidelines with a bruised knee from a scary hit in the first quarter, Todd Collins completed a 7-yard pass to Brandon Lloyd for the game’s only touchdown in the Redskins’ 12-10 preseason loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers on Saturday night.
Matt Schaub looked at ease and Matt Leinart responded to a week of “tough love”‘ from his coach. The starting quarterbacks were terrific in the preseason game between the Houston Texans and Arizona Cardinals. The defense, well, that’s another matter. Schaub was 9-of-12 for 108 yards and ran 5 yards for a score and the Texans went on to beat Arizona 33-20 on Saturday in new Cardinals coach Ken…