Thompson Sports News

Jays hitting coach Martinez suspended five games for pre-game altercation with umpire

 

Toronto Blue Jays hitting coach Guillermo Martinez five games and fined him an undisclosed amount after his heated argument with umpire Doug Eddings before a game Wednesday.

 

The altercation occurred during the lineup card exchange before Toronto's game in Chicago against the White Sox to close a three-game series.

 

Martinez brought out the lineup card, a task usually performed by manager Charlie Montoyo, and shook hands with the umpires before getting in an animated argument with Eddings. Martinez was ejected from the game.

 

MLB said in a release Friday that Martinez was being sanctioned for unsportsmanlike conduct and making contact with Eddings.

 

Eddings, who was assigned to third base for Wednesday's game, was behind the plate for Toronto's 7-6 loss to Chicago on Tuesday.

 

The suspension was set to begin when Toronto started a three-game series with the Brewers on Friday night in Milwaukee.

 

Canadian swimmer Penny Oleksiak narrowly misses eighth world championship medal

 

Penny Oleksiak narrowly missed out on a third medal at the 2022 world aquatics championships with a fourth-place finish Thursday in the women's 100-metre freestyle.

 

Oleksiak, from Toronto, was third at the turn, but finished .06 seconds off the podium in a time of 52.98 seconds.

 

Australia's Mollie O'Callaghan finished first in to pick up her second gold medal in Budapest, and fourth overall.

 

World-record holder Sarah Sjoestroem of Sweden was second (52.80) and Torri Huske of the United States was third (52.92).

 

Toronto's Kayla Sanchez was sixth (53.59).

 

Oleksiak swam the anchor leg to help Canada win bronze in the women's 4x200 freestyle relay, giving her seven career world championship medals.

 

Tony Siragusa, who helped Ravens win Super Bowl, dies at 55

 

Tony Siragusa, the charismatic defensive tackle who helped lead a stout Baltimore defense to a Super Bowl title, has died. He was 55.

 

Siragusa's broadcast agent, Jim Ornstein, confirmed the death Wednesday. The cause of death was not immediately available.

 

“This is a really sad day,” he said. “Tony was way more than my client, he was family. My heart goes out to Tony's loved ones.”

 

Siragusa, known as “the Goose,” played seven seasons with the Indianapolis Colts and five with the Ravens. Baltimore's 2000 team won the Super Bowl behind a defense that included Siragusa, Ray Lewis and Sam Adams.

 

Siragusa was popular with fans because of his fun-loving personality, which also helped him transition quickly to broadcasting after his playing career.

 

Siragusa came to Baltimore as a free agent in 1997 and teamed up with Adams to form an imposing defensive tackle tandem. In the Ravens' 2000 championship season, the 6-foot-3, 340-pound Siragusa was sixth among Baltimore defenders with 75 tackles.

 

Edmonton Oilers sign head coach Woodcroft to three-year extension

 

The Edmonton Oilers have signed head coach Jay Woodcroft to a three-year contract extension, rewarding him for leading the team to the NHL Western Conference final.

 

The Oilers named Woodcroft as the team's interim head coach on Feb. 10 after Dave Tippett was fired following a 7-13-3 run that had the Oilers sitting fifth in the Pacific Division.

 

The Oilers underwent a rapid turnaround under the 45-year-old Toronto native, winning their next five games by a combined score of 22-8.

 

Edmonton went 26-9-3 with Woodcroft at the helm for the final 38 games of the regular season - the second-best record in the NHL over that span - and finished second in the Pacific Division.

 

The Oilers defeated the Los Angeles Kings in seven games to open the post-season, then dispatched the archrival Calgary Flames in five contests to reach the conference final for the first time since advancing to the Stanley Cup final in the 2005-06 season.

 

Edmonton was swept by Colorado in the western final.

 

Canada's Masse wins third straight world 100 backstroke medal with silver in Budapest

 

Kylie Masse took silver in the women's 100-metre backstroke at the world aquatic championships, finishing just short of a third straight world title in the event.

 

Masse, from LaSalle, Ont., finished in 58.40 seconds, .18 seconds behind winner Regan Smith of the United States.

 

Claire Curzan of the U.S., was third in 58.67 seconds.

 

Masse got the fastest start in the field of eight swimmers and was beside Smith out of the turn.

 

Masse pressured Smith over the final 50 metres, but the American touched the wall just ahead of the two-time champion.

 

It's the sixth world championship medal for Masse, who won the 100 backstroke in Budapest in2017 and Gwangju, South Korea in 2019.

 

Vettel questions Formula 1 career over oil sands

Sebastian Vettel arrived at the Montreal Grand Prix wearing his thoughts about climate change on his T-shirt.

 

The Formula One star from Germany arrived at Circuit Gilles Villeneuve in a T-shirt with the slogans “Stop Mining Tar Sands” and “Canada's Climate Crime” under a picture of a pipeline.

 

He's wearing a helmet with the same message this weekend.

 

His pipeline shirt created a buzz on social media, with many calling Vettel a hypocrite for competing in a gas-guzzling sport like Formula One.

 

His team Aston Martin is also sponsored by Saudi Arabia's state-owned oil giant Aramco.

 

The father of three told the B-B-C last month that his concerns about climate change have made him question his Formula One job.

 

De Grasse wins Oslo Diamond League 100 with best performance this season

 

Canada's Andre De Grasse appears to be rounding into form at the perfect time.

 

The six-time Olympic medallist from Markham, Ont., raced to victory in the 100 metres at the Oslo Diamond League on Thursday, crossing in a season's best 10.05 seconds despite rainy conditions.

 

Britain's Reece Prescod was second in 10.06, while Akana Simbine of South Africa was third in 10.09.

 

De Grasse, who struggled with an early-season injury, was fourth in the Diamond League stop in Birmingham, England three weeks ago, and then eighth in the 100 at the Prefontaine Classic in Eugene, Ore., on May 28.

 

He'll race the 200 in the Diamond League stop in Paris on Saturday.

 

 

Hockey Canada names coaches for under-18 Hlinka Gretzky Cup

 

Hockey Canada has announced Stephane Julien will lead its men's under-18 team at the upcoming Hlinka Gretzky Cup.

 

Head coach and general manager of the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League's Sherbrooke Phoenix the past two seasons, Julien will be joined behind the bench by assistants Alan Letang (Sarnia Sting, OHL) and Kris Mallette (Kelowna Rockets, WHL).

 

The staff for the under-18 showcase event also includes goaltending coach Kelly Guard (Prince Albert Raiders, WHL) and video coach Raphael-Pier Richer (Gatineau Olympiques, QMJHL).

 

Players will gather in Calgary for a four-day selection camp beginning July 20 ahead of the 2022 Hlinka Gretzky Cup in Red Deer, Alta., which is set to run from July 31 through Aug. 6.

 

Hockey Canada also announced its coaching staff for the country's under-17 program for the upcoming season Wednesday.

 

Mark O'Leary (Moose Jaw Warriors, WHL), Bruce Richardson (Blainville-Boisbriand Armada, QMJHL) and Greg Walters (Owen Sound Attack, OHL) will serve as head coaches of the three teams.

 

Blue Jays starter Ryu to undergo elbow surgery, expected to miss rest of season

 

Toronto Blue Jays left-hander Hyun Jin Ryu is expected to miss the rest of the season due to an elbow injury.

 

General manager Ross Atkins says Ryu will undergo elbow surgery and that a Tommy John procedure is a possibility.

 

Ryu has been on the injured list since June 2 due to left forearm inflammation.

 

Reliever Ross Stripling has replaced him in the starting rotation.

 

The Blue Jays have also placed right-hander Julian Merryweather on the 15-day IL with a left abdominal strain.

 

Right-hander Jeremy Beasley was recalled from Triple-A Buffalo and is active for Tuesday night's home game against the Baltimore Orioles.

 

Lions sign receiver Keon Hatcher to contract extension through 2023

 

The B.C. Lions have signed wide receiver Keon Hatcher to a contract extension through the 2023 season.

 

The 27-year-old from Tulsa, Oklahoma had 17 receptions for 214 yards and two touchdowns over seven games as a rookie last season. He had a TD on his first CFL reception in a Week 4 victory over Ottawa.

 

Hatcher had four receptions for 55 yards, including a six-yard touchdown, in the Lions' season-opening 59-15 win over Edmonton on Saturday.

 

Blue Jays president asks for end of program that shuts down street near Rogers Centre

 

Blue Jays president Mark Shapiro is asking the City of Toronto to end a program that closes a busy roadway near Rogers Centre on weekends to allow for pedestrian traffic.

 

In an open letter to the city, Shapiro says the ActiveTO program, which was started in 2020 to give people more space to get outside during the COVID-19 pandemic, impacts baseball fans trying to get to Rogers Centre for weekend games.

 

The program includes several Toronto streets, including Lakeshore West, which runs just south of the Blue Jays' home stadium.

 

Shapiro says that while the team supports people getting outside and exercising, he argues Toronto has other options for that than using Lakeshore West while Jays fans do not.

 

The city is currently reviewing the ActiveTO program over ongoing traffic concerns.

 

Mayor John Tory has said he wants the program to continue in some form after pandemic restrictions come to an end.

 

Clark takes early lead with opening round of 7 under at Canadian Open

 

Wyndham Clark was the clubhouse leader at 7-under 63 early in the first round of the RBC Canadian Open.

 

Matt Fitzpatrick was second, a shot behind Clark, at the national men's golf championship. Doug Ghim was third at 5 under Mackenzie Hughes of Dundas, Ont., was the low Canadian after morning play, tied for fourth at 4 under.

 

Hughes was tied with Tony Finau, Lee Hodges and defending champion Rory McIlroy.

 

The national men's golf championship was cancelled the past two years due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

 

McIlroy won the 2019 Canadian Open at Hamilton Golf and Country Club.

 

Crown seeks 2-year sentence for former Whitecaps coach's sex offences

 

A Crown prosecutor is seeking a sentence of nearly two years for a former women's soccer coach with the Vancouver Whitecaps who pleaded guilty to sex charges.

 

Bob Birarda, who also coached Canadian national youth teams, pleaded guilty in February to three counts of sexual assault and one count of sexual touching.

 

The offences, involving four different people, took place between 1988 and 2008.

 

Prosecutor Linda Ostry told a North Vancouver provincial court judge that the Crown is recommending a jail sentence of two years less a day, covering consecutive sentences for each of the offences, plus three years' probation.

 

The Crown also asked for a DNA sample, a mandatory 10-year firearm ban and, if a jail term is ordered, a non-communication order for each of the victims.

 

Birarda was dismissed by both the Whitecaps and Canada Soccer in October 2008.

 

Canadians hire Olympic hero Marie-Philip Poulin as player development consultant.

 

Canadian Olympian Marie-Philip Poulin has scored a front-office position with the Montreal Canadiens.

 

The National Hockey League club announced Tuesday that Poulin, a four-time Olympic medallist with Canada's national women's hockey team, is joining the team as a part-time player development consultant.

 

The Canadiens say Poulin will be called upon to join the players on the ice and in video sessions to work on their individual and collective skills.

 

The 31-year-old Poulin will hold the job while continuing to play with Canada's national team.

 

Poulin has won 15 medals in international competitions, including three gold medals at the Olympics, where she became the first hockey player to score a goal in four straight finals.

 

She scored the gold-medal winnings goals for Canada at the 2010 Vancouver Games, 2014 Sochi Games and 2022 Beijing Games in February.

 

CFL to launch a number of new interactive events for its fans

 

With the 2022 CFL season set to begin Thursday, fans will have a host of interactive experiences to participate in.

 

The league announced Tuesday the launch of CFL GameZone and an interactive CFL Preseason Futures game.

 

The two ventures are the result of the league's partnerships with Genius Sports and BetRegal, respectively.

 

CFL GameZone will offer free-to-play games including CFL Fantasy, the new CFL Preseason Futures predictor and CFL Pick `Em, among others.

 

CFL Preseason Futures will allow fans to predict multiple season-long outcomes.

 

It will be available in both English and French until June 19 and permit participants to predict how many games the Toronto Argonauts will win or the number of touchdowns Calgary Stampeders quarterback Bo Levi Mitchell will have.

 

Throughout the '22 season, Genius and the CFL will also launch a new polling tool, an official trivia challenge, an all-star voting mechanism and additional interactive games.

 

Betting widgets, including live scores, odds and offers will also be available.

 

Montreal Canadiens sign Wideman to two-year contract extension

 

The Montreal Canadiens have signed veteran defenceman Chris Wideman a two-year contract extension.

 

Wideman, 32, had four goals and 27 points in 64 games last season after signing a one-year deal on July 28, 2021.

 

A fourth-round draft pick of the Ottawa Senators in 2009, Wideman has amassed 20 goals and 52 assists in 245 NHL games with the Senators, Edmonton Oilers, Florida Panthers and Canadiens.

 

NHL fines Oilers forward Kassian $2,500 for removing Avs defenceman Byram's helmet

 

The NHL has fined Edmonton Oilers forward Zack Kassian US$2,500 for unsportsmanlike conduct after he removed the helmet off of Colorado defenceman Bowen Byram during Game 2 of the NHL Western Conference final.

 

Byram was shoved into the Oilers bench by Edmonton forward Josh Archibald during the third period of Thursday's game.

 

Kassian, who was sitting on the bench, reached over and removed Byram's helmet. He was assessed a minor penalty for interference.

 

Colorado won the game 4-0 and leads the best-of-seven series 2-0.

 

Game 3 is set for Saturday night in Edmonton.

Toronto Blue Jays place left-hander Hyun Jin Ryu on 15-day injured list

 

The Toronto Blue Jays placed left-hander Hyun Jin Ryu on the 15-day injured list Thursday due to left forearm inflammation.

 

He was the starter in Toronto's 7-3 win over the Chicago White Sox on Wednesday night but was pulled after four innings. Ryu allowed four hits and two earned runs over a 58-pitch appearance.

 

Ryu, who was out for almost a month earlier this season with the same forearm issue, is in the third year of a US$80-million, four-year contract. The 35-year-old South Korean has a 2-0 record and 5.33 earned-run average in six games this season.

 

The Blue Jays also selected the contract of right-hander Jeremy Beasley from triple-A Buffalo. He was active for Thursday's game against the White Sox at Rogers Centre.

 

 

Transgender athlete ban challenged in Utah lawsuit

 

A ban on transgender athletes playing on girls' sports teams is being challenged in court in Utah, one of more than a dozen states that have passed similar bans over the last two years.

 

Two anonymous families who sued Tuesday said the ban wrongly keeps their children from playing the sports they love with their friends.

 

Similar suits have been filed in states like Idaho, West Virginia and Indiana. Utah's ban is part of a wave of similar legislation in statehouses around the country.

 

Supporters say transgender athletes can have a physical advantage in girls' sports.

 

Still, there have been almost no cases of potential competitive advantages in K-12 sports in states passing bans, including Utah.

Sanctioned Abramovich files lawsuit at EU general court

 

Roman Abramovich has filed a lawsuit at the EU's general court against the European Union Council, which imposed sanctions on the former Chelsea owner as part of measures targeting Russia and President Vladimir Putin's close allies.

 

The EU included the Russian oligarch in March in its list of individuals targeted with frozen assets and travel bans over their role in the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

 

Abramovich was forced to sell the Premier League club after being sanctioned by the British government for what it called his enabling of Putin's “brutal and barbaric invasion” of Ukraine.

France blames ticket fraud for Champions League final chaos

 

French authorities have defended police for indiscriminately firing tear gas and pepper spray at Liverpool supporters at the Champions League final while blaming industrial levels of fraud that saw 30,000 to 40,000 people try to enter the Stade de France with fake tickets or none at all.

 

After a meeting into Saturday's chaos, the ministers of the sport and the interior shifted responsibility onto the Liverpool fans while not providing details on how they were sure so many fake tickets were in circulation.

 

UEFA launched an independent investigation into what caused the chaotic scenes and said the “comprehensive review will examine decision making, responsibility and behaviors of all entities involved in the final.”

 

Female referees to officiate men's World Cup for 1st time

 

 Female referees will make World Cup history this year by working games at a major men's tournament for the first time in Qatar.

 

FIFA has picked three female referees and three female assistant referees among 129 officials for World Cup duty.

 

French referee Stephanie Frappart has already worked men's games in World Cup qualifying and the Champions League.

 

FIFA's list also includes a man who caused controversy when refereeing a chaotic African Cup of Nations game in January.

 

Janny Sikazwe of Zambia later explained he was suffering with heatstroke.

Shapovalov eliminated at Geneva Open after second-round loss to Ivashka

 

Canada's Denis Shapovalov was eliminated from the Geneva Open on Wednesday with a 6-4, 7-6 (2), 6-3 loss to Ilya Ivashka of Belarus in the second round.

 

Ivashka had eight break point chances against Shapovalov, and converted two of them. The Belarusian saved the only break-point chance he faced.

 

Shapovalov, from Richmond Hill, Ont., was seeded third at the tournament and had a bye in the first round.

 

The Canadian had nine aces in the match but didn't get opportunities to shift momentum in a largely even match.

 

Both players cashed in on 69 per cent of service points and 31 per cent of return points.

 

Ivashka, who will next face Portugal's Joao Sousa, picked up his first win in four matches against Shapovalov.

 

Maple Leafs staying the course after another playoff disappointment

 

The Maple Leafs don't appear eager to make changes in the wake of another playoff setback.

 

Toronto finished the regular schedule with franchise records for points and wins, but failed to advance in the post-season for a sixth straight year after losing in seven games to the two-time defending Stanley Cup champion Tampa Bay Lightning.

 

The team met with the media Tuesday, and Leafs president Brendan Shanahan gave general manager Kyle Dubas and head coach Sheldon Keefe votes of confidence despite the disappointing result.

 

It also sounds like Toronto's core of talented, high-priced forwards led by Auston Matthews, Mitch Marner, John Tavares and William Nylander will be back in 2022-23 after the group took a step this season, but still couldn't get over the playoff hump.

 

The Leafs had the Lightning on the ropes in Games 6 and 7, and are now 0-9 over the last five post-seasons with a chance to eliminate an opponent.

 

Toronto hasn't won a playoff series since 2004.

 

Montreal Canadiens goalie Carey Price named finalist for Masterton Trophy

 

Montreal Canadiens goaltender Carey Price is one of three finalists for the 2022 Masterton Trophy, awarded to the NHL player who “best exemplifies the qualities of perseverance, sportsmanship and dedication to the game.”

 

After helping the Canadiens reach the Stanley Cup final in 2021, the 34-year-old Price suffered numerous setbacks in returning to the game.

 

The franchise's all-time leader for games and wins by a goaltender underwent knee surgery last summer.

 

The Vezina and Hart Trophy winner in 2015 also sought help from the NHLPA/NHL player assistance program in October for substance abuse.

 

Price, of Anahim Lake, B.C., returned to Montreal's net on April 15. It was his first start since July, 2021.

 

New York Islanders defenceman Zdeno Chara and Philadelphia Flyers centre Kevin Hayes are the other finalists.

 

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