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Wednesday, 14 August 2013 14:00

Wolverines look strong, Shoelace gone

ANN ARBOR, Mich. (AP) - Michigan may have recovered from its slide under Rich Rodriguez. Brady Hoke took Michigan to the Sugar Bowl in his first year as the Wolverines' coach, but the team slipped to an 8-5 mark last season, and there's still work to be done in Ann Arbor. Michigan must now move on without Denard Robinson, who was such a big part of the offense. Last year, Robinson was limited by elbow trouble, which allowed Devin Gardner to get a jump on quarterbacking the Wolverines. Gardner will take over full time in 2013. The season opener is Aug. 31 at home against Central Michigan.

CHICAGO (AP) - Alejandro De Aza singled in the winning run with the bases loaded in the 11th inning to lift the Chicago White Sox to a 4-3 victory over the Detroit Tigers on Tuesday night. Avisail Garcia had two hits against his former team, drove in two runs and scored two, including the game-winner. The White Sox overcame three errors by shortstop Alexei Ramirez to hand the AL Central leaders their fourth loss in five games. The winning rally started when Jeremy Bonderman walked Garcia leading off and threw high to second after fielding Jeff Keppinger's bunt. Then, with one out, he walked Tyler Flowers to load the bases. Phil Coke came in and De Aza lined a single to right. That made a winner of Addison Reed, who worked two scoreless innings.   

CHICAGO (AP) - Detroit Tigers outfielder Torii Hunter hinted on a radio show that teammate Prince Fielder's hitting slump might be caused by off-field issues. Talking Tuesday with station Detroit Sports 105.1, Hunter suggested that critics back off. He said "a lot of people don't know what's going on" in Fielder's life. A four-time All-Star, Fielder was hitting just .219 with five homers and 27 RBIs over his previous 50 games entering Tuesday night. Asked before the game about his comments, Hunter said they talked and that Fielder will "be fine." He also called him a "brother" and added "we've all got family issues, trust me." Fielder talked briefly and brushed off reporters, declining to go into any details.

Wednesday, 14 August 2013 11:08

Lions beefing up depth at running back

ALLEN PARK, Mich. (AP) - Running back Reggie Bush was one of the bigger free-agent signings in Detroit Lions history. That doesn't mean he'll be hogging the carries this season. Joique Bell and Mikel Leshoure rushed for more than a combined 1,000 yards in Detroit's pass-happy offense last year and offensive coordinator Scott Linehan thinks there's still room for both of them. Bush made his biggest impact as a receiver and returner after New Orleans drafted him in the first round of the 2006 draft. He showed he could be an everyday running back after he went to Miami before the 2011 season.

Wednesday, 14 August 2013 11:08

Nicklaus coming to Grand Rapids to honor Ford

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (AP) - Golf legend Jack Nicklaus will be in Grand Rapids next month to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the birth of President Gerald Ford. The 73-year-old will speak at a luncheon on Sept. 12, at the JW Marriott's International Ballroom. Proceeds from the event will be used for curriculum development at a new learning center being built at the Gerald R. Ford Presidential Museum in Grand Rapids. It costs $100 to attend "A Conversation with Golf Legend Jack Nicklaus," which includes lunch. Ford's son, Steve, says Nicklaus "played many rounds of golf with" the president, "and he was a close family friend for many of those years." Nicklaus served as an honorary pallbearer during Gerald Ford's funeral in 2007. 

Tuesday, 13 August 2013 14:26

Sale leads White Sox past Tigers, 6-2

CHICAGO (AP) - Chris Sale scattered nine hits in his fourth complete game of the season, and the Chicago White Sox overcame Miguel Cabrera's fourth homer in fourth games to beat the Detroit Tigers 6-2 on Monday night. Josh Phegley, Gordon Beckham and Alexei Ramirez singled in runs in a three-run fifth inning as Chicago handed AL Central-leading Detroit its third loss in four games. Beckham and Jeff Keppinger each had three hits. Phegley added a second RBI single and Alejandro De Aza hit a sacrifice fly in a two-run eighth that put away the game. Sale struck out six and walked none, winning his second straight start after going 1-9 in his previous 11. Doug Fister gave up four runs on eight hits and three walks in six innings.

Tuesday, 13 August 2013 14:26

Tigers activate 2B Omar Infante from DL

CHICAGO (AP) - The Detroit Tigers have activated second baseman Omar Infante from the disabled list and optioned infielder Hernan Perez to Triple-A Toledo. The AL Central leaders made the moves before Monday night's game against the Chicago White Sox. Infante was put on the disabled list with a sprained left ankle on July 4. He was 4 for 19 with one RBI in five games in a rehab assignment at Toledo. The Tigers recalled catcher Bryan Holaday from Triple-A Toledo following Sunday night's 5-4 loss to the Yankees in New York. He replaced Alex Avila, who went on the seven-day disabled list retroactive to Aug. 11 with delayed concussive symptoms. Detroit also announced the injury rehabilitation assignment of right-hander Octavio Dotel had been transferred from the Gulf Coast League Tigers to Class A Lakeland.

Tuesday, 13 August 2013 14:08

Detroit's secondary still banged up

ALLEN PARK, Mich. (AP) - Chris Houston sat out because of a migraine, and Louis Delmas is still nursing a balky knee. The Detroit Lions hope their secondary will be much improved this season - but first, they need their top players healthy and on the field together. Houston and Delmas both missed Monday's practice, and although there were plenty of other defensive backs eager to take their place, the Lions are well aware that it's important for cornerbacks and safeties to develop chemistry before the season starts. That's not easy when key players are sidelined. Detroit re-signed Houston, a cornerback, and Delmas, a safety, in the offseason. The Lions also signed free agent safety Glover Quin and drafted cornerback Darius Slay in the second round.

NEW YORK (AP) - After Mariano Rivera blew a third straight save for the first time in his famed career, Brett Gardner homered with two outs in the ninth inning to give the New York Yankees a 5-4 victory over the Detroit Tigers on Sunday for their first series win in more than a month. Rivera gave up another homer to a limping Miguel Cabrera and a drive to Victor Martinez in the top of the ninth, tying it at 4 and turning Alex Rodriguez's first homer of the season into a footnote. Gardner connected off Jose Veras. Rivera has a record 643 saves, but had never failed three in a row in 1,087 relief appearances coming in. He gave up a tying homer to Cabrera in the ninth Friday night, and Gardner won it with a two-out single in the 10th.

ALLEN PARK, Mich. (AP) - Detroit coach Jim Schwartz likes the play of his special teams. Schwartz praised the punt team after the Lions' 26-17 preseason win Friday night over the New York Jets. The Lions rookie punters averaged 43.5 yards in splitting six kicks and each landed one inside the 20-yard line. The Jets returned only two for a combined 19 yards. Sam Martin, a fifth-round selection in the NFL draft, also kicked off three times in the first half. His performance included a 54-yarder on his first attempt. He says it took "the pressure off" and allowed him to relax the rest of the game. Blake Clingan is in camp with Detroit, which used punter Nick Harris for most of last season.