NEW YORK (AP) The league that wins baseball’s All-Star Game no longer will get home-field advantage in the World Series, which instead will go to the pennant winner with the better regular-season record.
The change was included in Major League Baseball’s tentative new collective bargaining agreement and disclosed to The Associated Press by a person familiar with the agreement. The person spoke on condition of anonymity because details of the deal, reached in Irving, Texas, had not been announced
In addition, players and management agreed the minimum stay on the disabled list will be reduced from 15 days to 10.
Home-field advantage in the World Series generally rotated between the leagues through 2002. Baseball, led by then-Commissioner Bud Selig, and Fox television promoted the ”This Time It Counts” innovation after the 2002 All-Star Game in Milwaukee ended in a 7-7, 11-inning tie when both teams ran out of pitchers. Selig was booed in his own Milwaukee backyard.
As part of the changes for next year, players in the All-Star Game will have the incentive to play for a pool of money.
MLB and the union also agreed to ban smokeless tobacco for all new big leaguers. The ban does not apply to any player who already has at least one day of major league service.
HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) – A former Penn State assistant football coach’s treatment by the school after Jerry Sandusky was arrested entitles him to more than $12 million, a judge said in a ruling that substantially increased last month’s jury award.
Judge Thomas Gavin ruled in favor of Mike McQueary’s whistleblower claim, adding more than $5 million to the $7.3 million jury verdict for defamation and misrepresentation.
The judge said McQueary was humiliated in several respects, including ”being told to clean out his office in the presence of Penn State personnel, an action that suggests he had done something wrong and was not to be trusted.”
McQueary has testified that in February 2001 he reported to then-head coach Joe Paterno and to two high-ranking administrators that he had just seen Sandusky, at the time retired as the school’s defensive football coach, sexually abusing a boy in a team shower. Those officials did not contact police, but when investigators began looking into new complaints about Sandusky nearly a decade later, someone suggested they interview McQueary.
DALLAS (AP) – Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban is again expressing frustration with NBA officials, although this time his criticism has nothing to do with his own team.
Prior to the Mavericks’ game against San Antonio, Cuban complained about missed traveling and double-dribble calls in the first 15 seconds of the Clippers-Nets game Tuesday night – Brooklyn’s Bojan Bogdanovic committed both uncalled violations within feet of referee Ken Mauer.
”I’m almost ready to get fined after watching that double-dribble yesterday,” said Cuban, who has been fined more than $1.5 million over the years for comments about officiating.
”That was a classic. If that was us, I probably would have protested it, even if we would have lost, because then every SportsCenter would have played it over and over and over again. That was ridiculous and hopefully they take action. … That call at the beginning of the game, right in front of him, that wasn’t an error in judgment.”
PHILADELPHIA (AP) – A scheduled game between the Sacramento Kings and Philadelphia 76ers was postponed by the NBA because of condensation on the court at the Wells Fargo Center.
The game, which was slated to start at 7 p.m., was called off at 8:03 p.m. A makeup date was not immediately announced.
The Philadelphia Flyers hosted an NHL game at the arena Tuesday night and the ice surface remained under the basketball court – standard procedure at the Wells Fargo Center. However, Wednesday was an unseasonably warm, humid day for late November in Philadelphia, and it likely affected the surface.
Sacramento announced the postponement on Twitter and razzed the 76ers, saying ”y’all can trust the process but not the floor? Smh (shake my head), (at)Sixers.”
Fans booed when the postponement was announced. 76ers CEO Scott O’Neil said tickets to Wednesday’s contest would be valid for the makeup game, and fans in attendance also would get an additional ticket to another game – either Dec. 5 vs. Denver, Dec. 14 vs. Toronto or Dec. 18 vs. Brooklyn – plus a rebate on parking.
MINNEAPOLIS (AP) – Minnesota Vikings coach Mike Zimmer underwent emergency eye surgery, putting his status in question for the team’s game against Dallas.
Vikings general manager Rick Spielman said Zimmer was uncertain to recover in time for the matchup Thursday night against the league-leading Cowboys. Spielman said he’d met with coaches and players to put a contingency plan in place in case Zimmer is unable to coach.
Zimmer, who got his start in the NFL as an assistant with the Cowboys in 1994 and spent 13 years with the organization, has yet to face Dallas in the regular season as a head coach. The Vikings and Cowboys played last year in the preseason.
MIXED MARTIAL ARTS
LOS ANGELES (AP) – Former champions Georges St. Pierre, Cain Velasquez and T.J. Dillashaw are taking on the UFC in an attempt to form a mixed martial arts fighters association.
Current UFC fighters Donald ”Cowboy” Cerrone and Tim Kennedy also announced their participation in an organizing effort led by the five fighters and advised by Bjorn Rebney, the former CEO of Bellator.
The fighters hope to persuade the rest of the UFC’s talent to join them in unified negotiation for a greater percentage of revenue from the UFC. The promotion was sold to the WME-IMG entertainment conglomerate earlier this year for roughly $4 billion, an unprecedented price for a sports property.
The Mixed Martial Arts Athletes Association is the latest attempt to organize fighters in a famously individualistic sport into a collective bargaining unit. Kennedy, St. Pierre and Rebney all spoke passionately about the need to level the playing field between the UFC and its fighters, who are independent contractors.