The Associated Press
PITTSBURGH - The Pirates' hitting was very good for a change, even if their timing wasn't. On a day Ian Snell didn't figure to give the Atlanta Braves many runs, Pittsburgh's offense finally broke out.
FLOWERY BRANCH, Ga. - Atlanta Falcons coach Bobby Petrino said the team's final mini-camp practice Sunday ended a productive three-day schedule of five practices.
PITTSBURGH - Atlanta's Chuck James held the slumping Pittsburgh Pirates hitless until Jason Bay singled in the seventh, and Scott Thorman homered twice in leading the Braves to a 9-2 victory Saturday night that extended their winning streak to five.
PORTAL - "I told (my team before Game Three);" said Portal Panther coach Tendai Haggins, "whoever makes the most errors is probably going to lose this ballgame."
METTER - Metter's first round playoff series with Jeff Davis Friday night came down to one crucial inning for the Tigers. It was an inning mired with errors and mental mistakes, an inning that likely cost Metter a chance at advancing into round two.
PORTAL - The Portal Panthers dropped Game One of the first-round three-game series of the Class A State Playoffs to the Wilcox County Patriots Friday, but when it came down to elimination, Brett Rivers pitched a complete game, struck out eight, led PHS to a 7-3 victory and forced a Game Three.
PITTSBURGH - Andruw Jones and Jeff Francoeur homered on consecutive pitches in the sixth inning to help the Atlanta Braves end their longest streak without a homer in 24 years, and manager Bobby Cox tied Sparky Anderson for fourth place in career victories with a 4-1 decision over the Pittsburgh Pirates on Friday night.
ATLANTA - Kelly Johnson is sure glad he didn't take the day off.
METTER - The Metter Tigers have had a rollercoaster season. The streaky team has been fortunate, however, because the winning streaks have been a whole lot longer than the losing streaks, and they are currently riding a hot streak into the first round of the Class AA State Playoffs.
MINNEAPOLIS - Baseball has a problem: Clayton Kershaw, Aroldis Chapman, Felix Hernandez and all the other kings of the hill are just too good.
BESANCON, France - With defending champion Chris Froome and two-time winner Alberto Contador out of the race, the path is wide open for Vincenzo Nibali to become the first Italian to win the Tour de France since the late Marco Pantani in 1998.
CHARLOTTE, N.C. - It's been almost two decades since Morgan Shepherd last ran a full Sprint Cup season, and his last national series victory was in 1993.
MINNEAPOLIS - Seattle's Felix Hernandez will start Tuesday night's All-Star game for the American League and Adam Wainwright of the St. Louis Cardinals will open for the National League.
There's plenty of issues to discuss in the Southeastern Conference.
HOYLAKE, England - Phil Mickelson rolled long putts across the practice green in front of the Royal Liverpool clubhouse, some of them going in, most of them the right distance. He chirped to the caddie of Brandt Snedeker about their money game, a Mickelson tradition at the majors.
RIO DE JANEIRO - Mario Goetze produced the piece of individual skill that Lionel Messi couldn't muster.
RIO DE JANEIRO - No European team has ever won a World Cup played in the Americas. Just one more source of motivation for Germany ahead of Sunday's final against Argentina.
SILVIS, Ill. - Brian Harman is going to play in the final pairing of a PGA Tour stop for the first time. His playing partner is one accomplished part-timer.
NEW YORK - A word of caution to anyone anointing the Cleveland Cavaliers as the NBA favorites.
CHICAGO - Justin Ruggiano hit an RBI single with two outs in the ninth inning Friday that sent the Chicago Cubs over the Atlanta Braves 5-4.
SILVIS, Ill. - Jordan Spieth felt great Thursday on the first tee of the John Deere Classic. He heard not only his name, but, for the first time, the phrase "defending champion."
ATHENS, Ga. - Michael Phelps has never been the patient type.
SOUTHPORT, England - Mo Martin had a plan for Royal Birkdale, and it's working better than she imagined at the Ricoh Women's British Open.
RIO DE JANEIRO - The most entertaining World Cup in a generation comes down to a final match that pits the planet's best player against the tournament's best team.