Luke Voit hit a solo homer and Gleyber Torres added a two-run blast as the Yankees beat the Rays, 5-1 to force a deciding fifth game in their AL Division Series.
Voit's second-inning shot put New York ahead to stay before the Yanks' pitchers made the lead stand up. Jorden Montgomery gave up three hits over four innings, and the bullpen tossed no-hit, shutout ball the rest of the way. The Yankees also cooled off Randy Arozarena, who went 0-for-4 after collecting 11 hits in the Rays' previous four games.
Whoever wins tonight will go on to face the Astros, who advanced to the AL Championship Series by clobbering the Athletics 11-6. The Astros trailed 3-0 until Michael Brantley smacked the first of his two home runs, a two-run blast in the fourth. Jose Altuve also homered and Houston's bullpen didn't allow a run until the ninth inning after starter Zack Greinke was reached for four runs over 4 2/3s.
The Los Angeles Dodgers and Atlanta Braves have completed three-games sweeps in the NL Division Series to earn a matchup in the Championship Series. The Dodgers polished off a three-game sweep by crushing the Padres, 12-3. Will Smith set a Dodgers postseason record with five hits, and Joc Pederson had a two-run single to cap a decisive five-run third as Los Angeles reached the NLCS for the fourth time in five years. Justin Turner put the Dodgers ahead with his team-record 65th career hit, breaking Steve Garvey's mark. Cody Bellinger added three RBIs to the rout.
The Braves are in the NLCS following a 7-0 shutout of the Marlins. Kyle Wright struck out seven and held the Marlins to three hits over six innings of his postseason debut, helping the Braves complete a three-game sweep in the division series. Travis d'Arnaud hit a two-run double and Dansby Swanson collected two RBIs to help Atlanta reach the NLCS for the first time since 2001.
The Chicago Bears are 4-1 after defeating Tom Brady and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Cairo Santos kicked a 38-yard field with 1:17 left as the Bears beat Brady for the first time in six tries, 20-19. Brady threw for 253 yards and one touchdown, but the Buccaneers came up short after winning three in a row. Brady appeared to lose track of downs on Tampa Bay's final drive. After DeAndre Houston-Carson broke up his fourth-down pass with 33 seconds left, Brady put up four fingers, appearing to think he had one more down. Nick Foles beat Brady in their first meeting since Foles led the Eagles to a Super Bowl 52 victory over the Patriots. The Super Bowl 52 MVP completed 30 of 42 passes for 243 yards and a touchdown in his second start since replacing Mitchell Trubisky.
In NFL news:
Sunday's game between the Buffalo Bills and Tennessee Titans has been moved to Tuesday night as long as Tennessee has no more positive tests for COVID-19 in the interim. That's according to a person with direct knowledge of the switch. The person also told The Associated Press that the NFL also is rescheduling Sunday's Broncos-Patriots game from to Monday night after New England had a smaller outbreak of COVID-19. Three games now have been postponed due to the pandemic: Pittsburgh at Tennessee in Week 3 was moved to Oct. 25. Buffalo is scheduled to host Kansas City next Thursday, but that game will be rescheduled. Also a person familiar with the situation has told The AP that the Titans were told players could not gather together for any in-person activities either at the club's facility or elsewhere a day before several players worked out at a private school. The NFL closed both the Tennessee and Minnesota facilities Sept. 29 after eight positive test results for the Titans. Starting quarterback Ryan Tannehill was among a group of Titans who worked out at Montgomery Bell Academy in Nashville on Sept. 30 after getting permission from coaches at the school.
The Patriots are missing a second straight day of practice since reigning NFL Defensive Player of the Year Stephon Gilmore joined quarterback Cam Newton on the reserve/COVID-19 list. Coach Bill Belichick says the team has closed its facility for the health and safety of the club but is continuing to prepare for its upcoming game with Denver virtually. Belichick says whether the Patriots return to their facility Friday will be a medical decision rather than a football one.
Atlanta has activated cornerback A.J. Terrell to their active roster from the reserve/COVID-19 list. The Falcons' first-round draft pick from Clemson has missed the past two games after opening the season as a starter. Terrell's status for Sunday's game against Carolina is not known.
Justin Herbert has been named the Chargers' starting quarterback for the rest of the season, beginning with Monday night's game at New Orleans. Head coach Anthony Lynn announced the decision today, saying the rookie from Oregon has impressed him from the beginning while showing consistency and making some great plays. Tyrod Taylor started the season opener but suffered a punctured lung while receiving a pain-killing injection before the Chargers' Sept. 20 game against Kansas City, pressing Herbert into service.
Kansas coach Les Miles has tested positive for COVID-19 and is quarantining in his home, where he plans to fulfill his head coaching responsibilities remotely. The Jayhawks have this week off before visiting West Virginia next Saturday. The school did not say whether any other players or staff have tested positive, though the Jayhawks have had clusters of positive tests since the beginning of the season.
In other pandemic news involving college football:
Florida Atlantic's game at Southern Mississippi on Saturday has been postponed because COVID-19 issues. FAU already has had two nonconference games called off. The Owls were unable to play Georgia Southern last month because of their COVID-19 problems.
The U.S. Naval Academy's Brigade of Midshipmen will be able to attend this weekend's home football game against Temple. Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan and Vice Adm. Sean Buck say state and local officials have approved a plan for a safe, socially-distanced viewing of the game in Annapolis.
A pair of veteran goaltenders are about to become NHL free agents. The Devils placed goaltender Cory Schneider on unconditional waivers for the purpose of buying out his contract. The 34-year-old Schneider has two years remaining on the seven-year, $42 million package. He has struggled the past two years and spent part of last season in the minor leagues. The Blackhawks will not re-sign goaltender Corey Crawford, potentially signaling a more extensive rebuild for one of the NHL's marquee franchises. Crawford helped the franchise to Stanley Cup titles in 2013 and 2015.
Also in the NHL:
Hurricanes forward Justin Williams is retiring after 19 NHL seasons and three Stanley Cup championships. The 39-year-old Williams had 320 goals and 477 assists for 797 points in 1,264 games with the Hurricanes, Flyers, Kings and Capitals.
Stars general manager Jim Nill says the plan is for 65-year-old Rick Bowness to return after serving as interim head coach since December. Nill announced that forward Tyler Seguin will need surgery for a torn labrum in his hip that will likely force him to miss the start of next season. The team also revealed that Stars captain Jamie Benn and netminder Ben Bishop are recovering from surgery.
Fourth seed Sofia Kenin and 54th-ranked Iga Swiatek have advanced to the French Open women's final. Kenin was a 6-4, 7-5 winner against Petra Kvitova, putting the American one match victory away from her second straight Grand Slam title. Swiatek carved out a 6-2, 6-1 win over Nadia Pororoska to become the lowest-ranked women's player to reach the final at Roland Garros.
Clint Bowyer will retire at the end of the NASCAR season and join the Fox Sports booth as an analyst. Bowyer is completing his 15th full season. He heads into Sunday's race at Charlotte Motor Speedway facing elimination from the playoffs. Bowyer ranked 11th in the 12-driver field that will be trimmed by four for the next round.
Brittany Lincicome and Kelly Tan each shot 3-under 67 in windy conditions at challenging Aronimink to share the lead in the KPMG Women's PGA Championship. Lincicome played bogey-free to stay even with Tan and keep her first Women's PGA title in sight. The 35-year-old Floridian is trying to win for the first since having a baby last July. Danielle Kang, Lydia Ko, Gabby Lopez, Carlota Ciganda, Linnea Strom and Cydney Clanton were a stroke back.
Also, Bryson DeChambeau showed his U.S. Open-winning form while taking the first-round lead at the Shriners Hospitals for Children Open. DeChambeau had two-putt birdies on all three of the par 5s and two of the par 4s on his way to a 9-under 62 and a one-shot lead over three players. He would have posted his best score on the PGA Tour had he holed an eagle putt from the fringe on the par-5 ninth. Patrick Cantlay made a 12-foot birdie putt on the 18th for a 63. His only blemish was a long three-putt bogey on the 14th. Harold Varner III, Scott Harrington, Nate Lashley and Austin Cook also were at 63.
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