Jake Long to visit Denver Broncos on Thursday

Seth Perlman/Associated Press

Former No. 1 pick Jake Long. Seth Perlman/Associated Press

ENGLEWOOD, Colo. (AP) — The Denver Broncos want to see if former No. 1 draft pick Jake Long is healthy enough to bolster their offensive line to protect 39-year-old Peyton Manning.

Long is scheduled to visit the Broncos on Thursday. He’s also visited with the Giants and Falcons this week.

The first overall pick by Miami in 2008 and a four-time Pro Bowler, Long missed nine games last season in St. Louis with a second torn ACL in two years. The Rams released him this spring.

The Broncos lost star left tackle Ryan Clady to a season-ending knee injury in May, leaving second-round draft pick Ty Sambrailo as Manning’s presumed blindside protector.

Lester strikes out 14 to lead Cubs over Rockies 3-2

colorado-rockiesCHICAGO (AP) — Jon Lester struck out 14, one shy of his career high and the most for a Cubs pitcher in more than a decade, leading Chicago over the Colorado Rockies 3-2 Wednesday.

A day after he was acquired from Toronto, Jose Reyes was 1 for 3 with a walk and a stolen base in his Rockies’ debut. The four-time All-Star, obtained in a trade that sent Troy Tulowitzki to Toronto, batted second and singled in his first at-bat for Colorado, then was caught stealing.

Lester (6-8) struck out seven of his first eight hitters and nine of the first 14. He allowed two runs, five hits and one walk in eight innings.

His strikeout high was set for Boston on May 3 last year against Oakland. He became the first Cubs pitcher to strike out 14 since Mark Prior had 16 on Sept. 30, 2004.

Indians avoid winless homestand, beat Royals 12-1

kc-royalsCLEVELAND (AP) — Corey Kluber took a shutout into the ninth, rookie Francisco Lindor hit a three-run homer and had a career-high four RBIs, and the Indians avoided a winless homestand with a 12-1 victory over the Kansas City Royals on Wednesday.

Michael Brantley, Yan Gomes and rookie Giovanny Urshela hit solo homers for Cleveland, which had been outscored 37-10 in losing the first six games of the homestand. Michael Bourn was 4 for 5 as Cleveland had a season-high 18 hits.

Kluber (6-11) held Kansas City to five hits. The reigning Cy Young Award winner retired the first 12 batters before Eric Hosmer’s leadoff double in the fifth. Alex Rios’ RBI groundout in the ninth scored the Royals’ only run.

Junior First Nationals Extend State Tournament Run With Improbable Comeback

**Live State Tournament Updates**


The North Platte First Nationals Junior Legion completed a comeback for the ages on Tuesday night at the Junior Legion State Tournament in Fremont. Trailing Grand Island 7-1 heading into their final at-bat of the night, North Platte rallied for 6 runs in the bottom of the 7th inning to tie the game at 7-7. After scrambling out of a bases loaded no-out jam in the bottom of the 7th, North Platte forced the game into extra innings.  Following a scoreless 8th inning for both teams, North Platte scored four runs in the top of the 9th inning to complete the improbable comeback and advance with an 11-7 win. Since the loss was Grand Island’s first of the tournament, both teams are still alive for the state title. North Platte will face Millard South on Wednesday night at 5:30 pm, with the winner of that game advancing to play Grand Island in the state championship game, which will be played following Wednesday’s 5:30 pm game.

Game 4 – Final Box Score – Elimination Game (Tuesday)
North Platte     0 | 0 | 0 | 1 | 0 | 0 | 6 | 0 | 4  –  11 R, 10 H, 6 E
Grand Island   0 | 0 | 0 | 5 | 0 | 2 | 0 | 0 | 0   –  7 R, 5 H, 6 E

WP: Comer
LP: Sextro

Notes: Caden Comer pitched 3 shutout innings in relief allowing 0 runs and giving up 1 hit and striking out 1 to earn the win. He also had a hit with an RBI and scored twice. Braiden Ruffin was 3 for 5 and scored 3 runs, Austin Orr was 2 for 5 with 2 RBI and scored 2 runs, Trev Chase was 2 for 4 with a run scored. For Grand Island Casey Burnham was 2 for 5 with an RBI and scored 2 runs, Cole Evans added a hit with 2 RBI.

Game 3 – Final Box Score – Elimination Game (Monday)
North Platte               0 | 1 | 0 | 0 | 1 | 1 | 0  –  3 R, 5 H, 1 E
Lincoln Southeast    0 | 0 | 0 | 1 | 0 | 0 | 0  –  1 R, 5 H, 0 E

WP: Comer
LP: Jurgens

Notes: North Platte’s Caden Comer pitched 6 1/3 innings allowing 1 run on 5 hits and 3 strike outs. Cade Wroot threw the final 2/3 of an inning to get the save. For North Platte Trev Chase was 2 for 2 with 1 RBI and Austin Orr was 1 for 2 and scored twice. For Lincoln Southeast Aiden Bennett was 1 for 3 with an RBI and Crew Charlton was 1 for 3 and scored the only run.

Game 2 – Final Box Score – Elimination Game (Sunday)
Omaha Central   0 | 0 | 0 | 0 | 0 | 0 | 0  –  0 R, 4 H, 1 E
North Platte         0 | 1 | 0 | 1 | 0 | 1 | 0  –  3 R, 5 H, 2 E

WP: Sawyer
LP: Eubanks

Alec Sawyer pitched a complete game allowing 4 hits, 0 runs and striking out 5. Austin Orr was 1 for 1 with an RBI, scored a run and walked once. Jacob Harvey had 2 RBI. For Omaha Central, Yogi Eubanks pitched a complete game allowing 3 runs of which only 2 were earned and struck out 1.

Game 1 – Box Score – First Round (Saturday)
Millard North   0 | 0 | 0 | 1 | 2 | 0 | 0  –   3 R, 5 H, 2 E
North Platte      0 | 0 | 0 | 0 | 1 | 0 | 0  –   1 R, 2 H, 2 E

WP: Ritzdorf
LP: Wroot

Notes: For Millard North Jordan Ritzdorf threw a complete game 2 hitter to get the win. He gave up 1 unearned run, with 10 strikeouts. At the plate for Millard North Josh Heller was 2 for 2 with a solo home run. For North Platte, Kade Wroot threw 4 and 2/3 innings gave up 2 earned runs struck out 5 and suffered the loss. At the plate Trev Chase was 1 for 3 with a run scored.

LeMahieu helps Rockies win 1st game after Tulowitzki trade


CHICAGO (AP) — D.J. LeMahieu had three hits and scored twice to help the Colorado Rockies get a win in their first game after trading Troy Tulowitzki, beating the Chicago Cubs 7-2 on Tuesday night.

LeMahieu extended his hitting streak to 18 games with an RBI double as part of a four-run first, tripled in the fifth and singled in the ninth to help Colorado won for the third time in five games.

Daniel Descalso, who started at shortstop in this game, made a leaping grab of a line drive by Kris Bryant to end the seventh inning and strand two runners.

Nolan Arenado had a two-run double and Nick Hundley added a run-scoring groundout in the first against Dallas Beeler (0-1).

Yohan Flande (1-1) got his first career victory, giving up a run and four hits while walking three and striking out four in five innings.

Chiefs’ Berry cleared to return after lymphoma treatments

Eric Berry Kansas City ChiefsST. JOSEPH, Mo. (AP) — Pro Bowl safety Eric Berry has been cleared by the Kansas City Chiefs’ medical staff and his doctors to return to the practice field after undergoing treatment for lymphoma.

The Chiefs said in a brief statement late Tuesday that Berry would join quarterbacks, rookies and injured players in the first day of training camp Wednesday at Missouri Western.

Berry was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s disease last December, shortly after complaining of pain in his chest following a game against Oakland. He was treated at Emory University in Atlanta and went through the final round of it in June.

Berry underwent a battery of tests Tuesday, when rookies and select veterans reported to training camp. He was cleared to take the field late in the day.

Hosmer’s homer in 9th lifts Royals to 2-1 win over Indians

kc-royalsCLEVELAND (AP) — Eric Hosmer’s homer with two outs in the ninth inning lifted the Kansas City Royals to a 2-1 victory on Tuesday night over the Cleveland Indians, who have lost eight straight at home — their longest home losing streak in 40 years.

Hosmer hit a 3-2 pitch from Trevor Bauer (8-8) over the wall in right for his 11th homer. The shot came one pitch after Indians catcher Roberto Perez threw out Lorenzo Cain trying to steal second. When his homer cleared the wall, Hosmer pointed toward Kansas City’s dugout, which was celebrating wildly.

Wade Davis (7-1) pitched a perfect eighth and Greg Holland worked the ninth — getting a nifty groundout, and a game-ending double play — for his 22nd save as the Royals won their fourth straight and 16th in 21 games.


Chiefs Pro Bowl DT Dontari Poe out after back surgery

donatri poeST. JOSEPH, Mo. (AP) — Chiefs defensive tackle Dontari Poe will miss all of training camp and could miss part of the season after the Pro Bowl run-stuffer had surgery last week on his ailing back.

Poe first hurt his back during offseason workouts, but coach Andy Reid said Tuesday that he aggravated the injury training at home. Poe was diagnosed with a herniated disc and had surgery July 15, and trainer Rick Burkholder said he will be out indefinitely.

Poe is coming off his second straight Pro Bowl. The 6-foot-3, 346-pound tackle had a career-best six sacks last season while anchoring the middle of the Chiefs defensive line.

Reid said that Jaye Howard will take over his position in training camp, though Mike DeVito and sixth-round pick Rakeem Nunez-Roches could also compete for time.

Defensive end Antonio Smith rejoining Broncos

DenverBroncosENGLEWOOD, Colo. (AP) — Defensive end Antonio Smith will participate in the Denver Broncos’ training camp after tending to a personal matter that kept him away from the team’s offseason workouts this summer.

The Broncos’ brass and Smith decided it was best for him to stay away from the team after reports surfaced in late May that prosecutors in Texas were investigating a criminal sexual complaint against Smith.

Smith never was arrested nor were any charges filed in the case.

In a statement Tuesday, coach Gary Kubiak said: “We’ve been in communication with Antonio and the league for the last couple of months. Based on those discussions, it’s appropriate for Antonio to be here and compete with the rest of the team as we begin training camp.”

A’s sending Ben Zobrist to Royals

ben zobristOAKLAND, Calif. (AP) — The Oakland Athletics have traded utilityman Ben Zobrist and cash to the Kansas City Royals for right-hander Aaron Brooks and minor league left-hander Sean Manaea.

The teams announced the trade Tuesday. The 34-year-old Zobrist, an infielder and outfielder, batted .268 with six home runs, 20 doubles, two triples and 33 RBIs in 67 games for the A’s, who are last in the AL West.

He joins a Royals team that leads the AL Central a season after beating Oakland in the one-game wild card on the way to its first World Series in 29 years and a seven-game loss to San Francisco.

Zobrist missed a month following arthroscopic left knee surgery in late April for a torn meniscus.

A’s general manager Billy Beane pulled off his second trade in 24 hours and third in six days. Oakland dealt closer Tyler Clippard to the New York Mets on Monday night after trading lefty Scott Kazmir to his hometown Houston Astros last Thursday.