By Bruce Martin PA SportsTicker Contributing Editor
Sebastien Loeb won the Germany Rally for the sixth straight year and closed in on series leader Marcus Gronholm for the world title on Sunday. Loeb picked up his 33rd rally win in his Citroen and finished 20.3 seconds ahead of Belgium’s Francois Duval with Finland’s Mikko Hirvonen third. “I am delighted to have won again,” Loeb said.
Brady Quinn’s strong debut wasn’t enough for him to muscle into Cleveland’s quarterback competition yet. Quinn shined in his NFL introduction, leading the Browns on two long touchdown drives in the final 9:20 of a 23-20 loss to Detroit. The rookie threw a pair of scoring passes — against Lions backups — and played with composure and confidence in his first action as a pro.
Soon-to-be father and star quarterback Tom Brady knows he can’t make all the calls. He’d like a few days off to be at the birth of his first child — “I hope so,” he said Monday — but the Patriots’ schedule and coach Bill Belichick might get in his way. “Bill has a lot to say,” Brady said, “so we’ll deal with it when it happens.” New England plays the third of its four exhibition games — the one…
On a day when Michael Vick agreed to plead guilty to dogfighting charges, the Atlanta Falcons were dealing with the loss of another quarterback. Local favorite D.J. Shockley, who was battling for the No. 2 spot behind Vick replacement Joey Harrington, confirmed Monday that he will likely undergo surgery next week for a torn anterior cruciate ligament.
Trent Green was tabbed as the Miami Dolphins’ starting quarterback Monday, ending a bit of training camp speculation over who would win the job. Green beat out Cleo Lemon, said Dolphins coach Cam Cameron — who insisted throughout camp that a real competition was taking place at quarterback and that the 37-year-old veteran wasn’t being handed the starting role.
Dance Smartly, the first Canadian-bred horse to win the Breeders’ Cup in 1991, has died after sustaining an injury in her paddock. She was 19. The filly, who won the Eclipse Award as North America’s top 3-year-old in 1991, was euthanized over the weekend because of an irreparable injury related to an arthritic joint in her knee.
The firsts just keep on coming for Ryan Budde. Three weeks after making his major league debut, Budde doubled in the winning run in the 10th inning and the Los Angeles Angels beat the New York Yankees 7-6 Monday night, improving their major league-leading home record to 41-17. “It feels great, a dream come true.
The Detroit Lions took Shaun Rogers off the physically unable-to-perform list Monday, making one of their best players eligible to practice for the first time this year. Rogers was selected to the Pro Bowl in 2004 and 2005, when the defensive tackle recorded a career-high 5 1/2 sacks. But he enters the season with questions about his play and weight.
Bobby Jenks’ pitch selection got in the way of him setting a remarkable record. Jenks settled for a share of the record when Joey Gathright broke the Chicago closer’s string of 41 straight outs, and then stopped the White Sox’s worst skid in 16 years by saving a 4-3 victory over the Kansas City Royals on Monday night.
The Brewers held on to their big lead this time. Prince Fielder homered for the second straight day and Milwaukee beat the Arizona Diamondbacks 9-0 Monday night to move into a tie for the NL Central lead. “I think that’s the key for us,” Fielder said. “When we score early it helps the whole team.” Fielder drove in four runs and Bill Hall hit a three-run drive for the Brewers, who won for the second…