LEADING OFF: Giants vs Dodgers, Nola and Means back on mound

Jul 19, 2021, 1:15 PM | Updated: Jul 20, 2021, 1:22 am

A look at what’s happening around the majors today:



Buster Posey and the surprising San Francisco Giants continue their pivotal four-game series against the rival Dodgers. The star catcher hit a two-run homer his first time up Monday night after missing two weeks with a bruised left thumb, and San Francisco won the opener 7-2 in Los Angeles after putting All-Star shortstop Brandon Crawford on the 10-day injured list due to an oblique strain.

The Giants, in first place since May 31, lead the NL West by two games over the defending World Series champion Dodgers. Alex Wood (8-3, 3.67 ERA) pitches for San Francisco against his former team. The funky left-hander is 2-0 with a 2.25 ERA this month.


Philadelphia Phillies right-hander Aaron Nola returns to the mound in New York against the Yankees after missing his last scheduled start because of COVID-19 contact tracing.

Nola never tested positive for the coronavirus but was sidelined after teammate Alec Bohm did July 10 in Boston.

Nola is 6-5 with a 4.53 ERA in 18 starts for the Phillies, who entered Monday’s play two games behind the first-place New York Mets in the NL East. Domingo Germán (4-5, 4.72) pitches for the Yankees.


The Oakland City Council is expected to vote at its meeting on whether to preliminarily approve the Athletics’ new ballpark project at Howard Terminal in Jack London Square.

In May, Major League Baseball instructed the club’s front office to explore relocation options if no ballpark agreement could be reached.

“Hopefully it goes in our direction,” manager Bob Melvin said. “I’d love to stay in Oakland. I hope the team stays in Oakland. We have a long, rich history here. I think that’s the case with anybody who’s either grown up here or lives here or is an Oakland A’s baseball fan or a player.”

The A’s are the last professional franchise in the city after the Golden State Warriors relocated to San Francisco and the NFL’s Raiders to Las Vegas.


The American League-worst Baltimore Orioles get their top pitcher back when John Means returns from the injured list to start at Tampa Bay.

Means looked like an early contender for the AL Cy Young Award before he was sidelined by a shoulder injury in early June. He is 4-2 with a 2.28 ERA in 12 starts, including a no-hitter at Seattle on May 5 that was a dropped third strike from being a perfect game.

Orioles manager Brandon Hyde said he would “closely monitor” Means during the left-hander’s first couple of starts back.

Shane McClanahan, born in Baltimore, will face the Orioles for the first time. The left-hander had a Cal Ripken growth poster on his wall growing up.

“Cal is the reason I love the game,” McClanahan said.


The NL East-leading New York Mets continue their series at Cincinnati without manager Luis Rojas, whose outburst after a bizarre play Sunday in Pittsburgh led to a two-game suspension.

Rojas was livid at umpires for calling a ball fair that starting pitcher Taijuan Walker swatted toward the dugout, thinking it was foul. The gaffe led to three Pirates crossing the plate when no Mets player went to retrieve the ball.

The play wasn’t reviewable, but Rojas wanted the umpires to talk about it anyway. He was suspended and fined an undisclosed amount for “excessive arguing.”

“I still firmly believe it was foul. I would love for a play like that to be reviewable,” Rojas said.

Rojas began his suspension Monday night, when the Mets hit seven homers for a wild 15-11 win over the Reds in 11 innings. Bench coach Dave Jauss is managing the team in his absence.

Michael Conforto has hit three homers in the past two days and connected in three of his last five games overall after going a career-long 30 games without one.


More AP MLB: https://apnews.com/hub/mlb and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


Vegas Golden Knights center Jonathan Marchessault (81) scores against Philadelphia Flyers goaltende...
Associated Press

Marchessault’s OT goal lifts Vegas to 2-1 win over Flyers

LAS VEGAS (AP) — Jonathan Marchessault scored 3:21 into overtime and the Vegas Golden Knights defeated the Philadelphia Flyers 2-1 on Friday night. After the Flyers controlled much of the action in their offensive zone for the first three minutes of the extra period, Marchessault stole the puck from Kevin Hayes, raced in on a […]
1 day ago
Boston Bruins defenseman Connor Clifton (75) skates with the puck against Arizona Coyotes center Tr...
Associated Press

Coyotes end 19-game losing streak to Bruins with 4-3 win

TEMPE, Ariz. (AP) — The Arizona Coyotes’ return to the Mullett turned into one big streak-ending party. Lawson Crouse scored his second goal with 13.5 seconds left in the third period and the Coyotes returned home to end a 19-game losing streak to the Boston Bruins with a 4-3 victory Friday night. “They are a […]
1 day ago
Dallas Mavericks guard Luka Doncic (77) checks on Milwaukee Bucks forward Giannis Antetokounmpo (34...
Associated Press

Lopez layup, Mavs FT woes save Bucks after Giannis fouls out

DALLAS (AP) — Giannis Antetokounmpo fouled out before the Milwaukee Bucks hung on and beat Luka Doncic and the Dallas Mavericks. That sixth foul set the stage for how the Bucks made it four consecutive victories. Tim Hardaway Jr. missed all three free throws after getting fouled by the Greek Freak and Dorian Finney-Smith missed […]
1 day ago
Utah Jazz forward Kelly Olynyk, left, and Minnesota Timberwolves center Rudy Gobert (27) look for a...
Associated Press

D’Angelo Russell powers Timberwolves past Jazz, 118-108

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — D’Angelo Russell scored 20 of his 30 points in the fourth quarter, Rudy Gobert had 22 points and 13 rebounds in his return to Utah and the Minnesota Timberwolves beat the Jazz 118-108 on Friday night. Gobert was traded to Minnesota over the summer. The French center spent his first […]
1 day ago
New Orleans Pelicans head coach Willie Green, second from left, puts his hand on Phoenix Suns guard...
Associated Press

Williamson’s 35 points lift Pelicans past Suns, 128-117

NEW ORLEANS (AP) — Zion Williamson apologized for his 360-degree, one-handed slam dunk that angered the Phoenix Suns at the end of a game that the New Orleans Pelicans were already going to win. Still, the crowd-pleasing play symbolized Williamson’s potential to rise above the disappointments of previous seasons and live up to the extraordinary […]
1 day ago
Luuk de Jong of the Netherlands celebrates after scoring a penalty kick during the World Cup quarte...
Associated Press

Dutch eliminated from World Cup in Louis van Gaal’s finale

LUSAIL, Qatar (AP) — The Dutch were outnumbered in their quarterfinal match at the World Cup. Argentina had one Lionel Messi and the Netherlands had none. And still, the Oranje came back and forced extra time in a knockout match for the ages by scoring in the 83rd minute and then on a playground-type restart […]
1 day ago
LEADING OFF: Giants vs Dodgers, Nola and Means back on mound