NEW YORK (AP) Ken Griffey Jr. was elected to baseball's Hall of Fame on Wednesday with the highest voting percentage ever, and Mike Piazza will join him in Cooperstown this summer.
A star slugger of the Steroids Era never tainted by accusations of drug use, Griffey was on 437 of 440 votes in his first appearance on the Baseball Writers' Association of America ballot. His 99.3 percentage topped the previous mark of 98.84, set when Tom Seaver appeared on 425 of 430 ballots in 1992.
After falling 28 shy last year, Piazza received 365 votes in his fourth time on the ballot and will be inducted along with Griffey on July 24.
More from FoxSports
A player needs 75 percent to gain election, and Jeff Bagwell missed by 15 votes and Tim Raines by 23. Trevor Hoffman, on the ballot for the first time, was 34 short.
The vote total dropped by 109 from last year because writers who have not been active for 10 years lost their votes under new rules.
There were significant increases for a pair of stars accused of steroids use. Roger Clemens rose to 45 percent and Barry Bonds to 44 percent, both up from about 37 percent last year.
TAMPA, Fla. (AP) - The Tampa Bay Buccaneers fired coach Lovie Smith on Wednesday night.
Smith went 6-10 this season and 8-24 over two years in charge of the team. The announcement came as a surprise to many because Smith's job was not considered to be in danger.
General manager Jason Licht will oversee the search for a new coach.
Smith led the Chicago Bears to the NFC title in 2006, when they lost to Indianapolis in the Super Bowl. He was 84-66 in nine seasons with Chicago.
The Bucs showed some improvement this season with No. 1 overall draft pick Jameis Winston at quarterback and revitalized running back Doug Martin. But they lost their final four games after pulling into position to compete for a wild-card playoff berth.
CLEVELAND (AP)- LeBron James has dropped Johnny Manziel as a business client.
A spokesman for James said the NBA star and has ended his marketing agreement with Manziel, the embattled Browns quarterback whose behavior has him on very shaky ground with his team and Cleveland fans.
James and his associates at LRMR - long-time friends Maverick Carter, Rich Paul and Randy Mims - will no longer be working with Manziel after mutually agreeing to end their partnership. LRMR has been handling endorsement deals for Manziel since he drafted into the NFL.
Cleveland.com first reported the end of the James tied to Manziel, who missed Cleveland's season finale Sunday after he was spotted partying in Las Vegas over the weekend. Browns owner Jimmy Haslam said the 23-year-old Manziel missed a medical treatment as part of a mandatory concussion protocol he's following. Manziel was back at the team's facility Monday for exit meetings, but he did not speak with the media.
Carter told Cleveland.com that the decision to end the business relationship was due partly so Manziel could focus on his personal life.
The NHL has named the final 40 players to take part in a new 3-on-3 tournament at All-Star weekend later this month in Nashville, Tennessee.
Leading goal-scorer Jamie Benn of the Dallas Stars and teammate Tyler Seguin headlined the All-Star selections for the Central Division, which will have top point-getter Patrick Kane of the Chicago Blackhawks as captain.
The division-leading Washington Capitals, Florida Panthers and host Nashville Predators each have three players expected to go.
Alex Ovechkin, Nicklas Backstrom and league-leading goaltender Braden Holtby will represent the Capitals on the Metropolitan Division team.
The Panthers, winners of 10 in a row, will have Atlantic Division captain Jaromir Jagr, defenseman Aaron Ekblad and goaltender Roberto Luongo there.
All 30 teams have at least one representative.
DOHA, Qatar (AP) - Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal advanced to the quarterfinals of the Qatar Open on Wednesday.
Djokovic captured a 6-2, 6-2 second-round win against Fernando Verdasco, marking his 17th straight victory against a Spanish opponent, dating to 2014.
Nadal looked confident during his 6-3, 6-2 win against Robin Haase, which improved his record against the Dutchman to 7-0.
''I played at a very high level against a player that I think played well for a lot of moments,'' Nadal said.
Top-seeded Djokovic and second-seeded Nadal saved two break points each on serve.