Wednesday Sports In Brief
JUL 24, 2014 3:11a ET
PLA D'ADET, France (AP) Poland's Rafal Majka led a late breakaway on the last of four tough climbs in the Pyrenees to win the 17th stage of the Tour de France on Wednesday, as Vincenzo Nibali took another step toward overall victory.
Nibali, who has earned the yellow jersey in every stage but two this year, made his latest case to take it home to Sicily and become the first Italian to win cycling's showcase race in 16 years. He finished third and gained valuable seconds on four of his closest rivals.
Majka tapped his chest, thrust his arms skyward, and shouted in joy after giving his Tinkoff Saxo-Bank squad its second straight stage victory after Tuesday's win by Australian Michael Rogers.
Wednesday's 77-mile trek was the shortest stage in this year's Tour, and the second of three days in the mountains along France's border with Spain.
Italy's Giovanni Visconti, whose solo breakaway with about 5-1/2 miles left failed to hold off Majka, was second, 29 seconds back. Nibali was third, 46 seconds behind.
CHICAGO (AP) - San Diego Padres outfielder Cameron Maybin was suspended 25 games by Major League Baseball on Wednesday for testing positive for an amphetamine.
Maybin said in a statement released by the Major League Baseball Players Association the failed test was the result of a change in the medication he was using to treat Attention Deficit Disorder.
Under the drug agreement between MLB and its players' union, 25 games is the penalty for a second positive amphetamine test. A first positive results only in six unannounced follow-up tests over the next year.
The 27-year-old Maybin was batting .247 with one home run and nine RBIs in 62 games this season.
SAN ANTONIO (AP) - Stars veteran guard Becky Hammon said Wednesday that she will retire at the end of the season, her 16th in the WNBA.
The team announced her decision Wednesday.
Hammon is the Stars' career leader in assists, points per game, and 3-pointers made. The 37-year-old Hammon is a six-time All-Star who ranks seventh in WNBA history in points (5,756), second in three-point field goals made (817), fourth in assists (1,663), sixth in games played (440) and first in free-throw percentage (89.6 percent, minimum 300 attempts).
Hammon said she'd like to go into coaching or television. She spent some time this past winter, while rehabbing a knee injury, with the NBA champion San Antonio Spurs and coach Gregg Popovich.
The former Colorado State star signed with the New York Liberty after going unpicked in the 1999 WNBA Draft. She helped guide New York to six playoff appearances. She reached the finals with San Antonio in 2008.
ATLANTA (AP) - Fourth-seeded Vasek Pospisil of Canada advanced to the Atlanta Open quarterfinals, beating Ukrainian qualifier Illya Marchenko 7-5, 6-3 on Wednesday.
In other second-round matches, Slovakia's Lukas Lacko beat sixth-seeded Denis Istomin of Uzbekistan 5-7, 6-1, 6-4; Israel's Dudi Sela topped ninth-seeded Sam Querrey of the United States 6-2, 6-4; and American Jack Sock beat New Zealand's Michael Venus 6-4, 6-2. Seventh-seeded Yen-hsun Lu of Taiwan beat American Alex Kuznetsov 6-4, 6-4 in a first-round match.
Defending champion John Isner, the No. 1 seed, will open play Thursday against wild-card entry Robby Ginepri of Atlanta. Ginepri beat Ukraine's Sergiy Stakhovsky on Tuesday.
South Africa's Kevin Anderson, the No. 2 seed who lost to Isner in the final last year, will start play on Thursday against qualifier Thiemo de Bakker of the Netherlands.
Monaco, who was a top-10 player in 2012, has won seven of his eight career titles on outdoor clay courts. He will play Thomaz Bellucci of Brazil, a two-time Gstaad champion, in the quarterfinals.
Bellucci won 6-4, 6-4 against fellow left-hander Federico Delbonis, the fifth-seeded Argentine.
Second-seeded Marcel Granollers of Spain reached the quarterfinals with a 6-1, 6-4 victory over Switzerland's Yann Marti. Granollers next faces countryman Pablo Andujar, who beat Blaz Rola of Slovenia 6-3, 6-3.
Completing the first-round matches, wild card Henri Laaksonen of Switzerland beat qualifier Gianni Mina of France, 7-6 (5), 7-6 (3).
NEW YORK (AP) - Hall of Fame football star Jim Brown - running out of time to retrieve his 1964 NFL championship ring - has sued a memorabilia dealer.
The 78-year-old Los Angeles resident filed the lawsuit Tuesday in Manhattan federal court against Lelands.com and Lelands Collectibles Inc.
The lawsuit seeks to halt the sale of the ring in an online auction that ends Friday. It also seeks unspecified damages over broadcast remarks that Lelands' founder, Joshua Evans, made about Brown.
Evans said Wednesday that Brown's claims ''are entirely without merit and we intend to vigorously defend against them.''
According to the lawsuit, the ring was stolen from Brown's Cleveland home in the late 1960s and the robbery was reported to police.
The lawsuit also accuses Evans of making statements in print and broadcast interviews in recent weeks that implied Brown has diminished mental capacity as a result of taking thousands of hits as a football player. On at least one broadcast, though, Evans could be heard describing Brown as the greatest football player of all time and saying Brown was aware that a family member had sold the ring in the 1990s.
The lawsuit said the ring is priceless to the former Cleveland Browns player. The highest bid was $58,948 Wednesday afternoon.
Evans said Lelands' position is the paperwork over the ownership of the ring is ''indisputable'' and anyone who bought it would get a 100 percent guarantee.
PASADENA, Calif. (AP) - Manchester United made an impressive debut under coach Louis van Gaal on Wednesday night, with Wayne Rooney scoring twice late in the first half of a 7-0 victory over the LA Galaxy.
Ashley Young and unsung defender Reece James scored two second-half goals apiece as United opened its summer tour with a surprisingly polished win over MLS' overmatched Galaxy in the Guinness International Champions Cup.
Danny Welbeck scored the first goal for Van Gaal, who has had limited work with his new club after leading the Netherlands to a third-place finish at the World Cup earlier this month. United still outclassed the Galaxy in the meeting of David Beckham's two former clubs.
Luke Shaw and Ander Herrera also made their United debuts at the Rose Bowl.
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (AP) - Leaders from the four U.S. cities in the running to bid for the 2024 Summer Games will meet with U.S. Olympic Committee leadership Friday in the first gathering to include representatives from all the major interested parties.
The USOC has asked teams from Los Angeles, Boston, Washington and San Francisco to send up to four people each for what it is billing as a low-key informative session about the finances and other details about bidding for the Olympics.
USOC CEO Scott Blackmun told The Associated Press the list of representatives was still being completed as of Wednesday. Though the USOC wasn't gearing this toward city and state leaders, Blackmun said all the cities were welcome to bring whoever they wanted.