Wednesday's Sports In Brief


SAN DIEGO (AP) Japanese pitcher Kenta Maeda homered in the second at-bat of his major league debut with the Los Angeles Dodgers and beat the Padres 7-0, making San Diego the first team in major league history to be shut out in its first three games.

There wasn't anything for the Padres to celebrate. They were outscored 25-0 in the opening three games by their biggest rivals and set MLB marks for futility.

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The Padres set the MLB mark with 27 straight scoreless innings to open a season. The old mark was 26 by the 1943 St. Louis Browns, according to STATS.

The Dodgers joined the 1963 Cardinals in winning their first three games by shutouts. Clayton Kershaw and Scott Kazmir had strong performances in the first two games before Maeda responded with six shutout innings of his own.

NEW YORK (AP) - Starlin Castro homered and drove in five runs, Mark Teixeira had four RBIs and the New York Yankees trounced the Houston Astros 16-6 for their first victory of the season.

Teixeira and Castro each hit a three-run homer. Carlos Beltran also went deep and Castro finished with four of the 17 hits for the Yankees. Michael Pineda benefited from the offensive outburst, taking home a win despite allowing six runs and eight hits in five innings.

Castro also had a run-scoring single, giving him seven RBIs in his first two games with New York after he was acquired from the Chicago Cubs in an offseason trade.


LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) - Louisville has announced additional self-imposed sanctions on its men's basketball program in the wake of an escort's allegations, reducing scholarships for the 2017-19 seasons and restricting official recruiting visits and recruiting opportunities for staff.

The school announced Feb. 5 a postseason ban for the Cardinals after its investigation into allegations a former staffer hired an escort and other dancers to entertain recruits and players determined that violations did occur.

A release on Wednesday stated Louisville will lose one scholarship in each of the 2017-18 and 2018-19 seasons with official visits reduced by one each in 2016-17 and `17-18.

Several investigations are ongoing into Louisville's program, including one by the NCAA. The governing body is expected to interview Louisville coach Rick Pitino this month about Katina Powell's allegations revealed in October.

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) - Bryce Drew has had a lot of opportunities to leave his alma mater Valparaiso over the past five seasons. He believes Vanderbilt offers everything he wants out of a program.

Vanderbilt introduced Drew as its new men's basketball coach at a news conference on the court at Memorial Gym with his father, former Valparaiso coach Homer Drew, fans and his new players on hand.

Drew just won a school-record 30 games in his fifth season as head coach at Valparaiso, which ended with a loss to George Washington in the NIT championship. Drew was 124-49 overall with two NCAA Tournament berths in his tenure and takes over a Vanderbilt program that went 19-14 under Kevin Stallings, who left for Pittsburgh on March 27.


BEREA, Ohio (AP) - As Robert Griffin III vacated the podium following a poised and polished news conference, the quarterback tapped his fingers on the dais and made clear the mantra for his new opportunity.

''No pressure, no diamonds,'' he said.

Though RG3 will face high expectations with the Browns - blending in with a new city, team, coach and offensive system - the former Redskins QB plans to handle all issues with a motivation stemming from numerous problems in Washington.

While he feels he has something to prove with the Browns, who signed him to a two-year, $15 million contract, Griffin admitted that he made mistakes and that he's learned from them.

ALAMEDA, Calif. (AP) - The Oakland Raiders agreed to a two-year contract with free-agent safety Reggie Nelson, according to a person with knowledge of the deal.

The person spoke on condition of anonymity because the contract had not been announced by the Raiders. The signing was first reported by ESPN.

Nelson fills one of the final major holes left on the Raiders this offseason. He will replace Pro Bowler Charles Woodson, who retired after last season, and will give Oakland a proven starter in the secondary.

ENGLEWOOD, Colo. (AP) - Defensive end Jared Crick narrowed it down to two teams when he was deciding on his football future: Houston, his home for four seasons, and Denver.

The four-year pro signed a two-year, $4 million contract with the Broncos, where he'll be reunited with coach Gary Kubiak, defensive coordinator Wade Phillips and D-line coach Bill Kollar, all of whom he worked with in Houston.


INDIANAPOLIS (AP) - Ed Carpenter and James Hinchcliffe left Indianapolis Motor Speedway more confident about the cars they will race in May.

A new rear-wing flap should prevent cars from going airborne, as Carpenter experienced 11 months ago. And new suspension parts should prevent drivers from getting gouged, which happened to Hinchcliffe last year before the Indianapolis 500 and left him with a life-threatening injury.

As everyone tries to figure out what impact the new aerodynamic package might make, Carpenter and Hinchcliffe believe the racing will be safer.

The ramifications from a series of scary wrecks last season - including one that killed British driver Justin Wilson - forced IndyCar officials to take a long, hard look at how to make the dangerous sport of open-wheel racing safer.


EDMONTON, Alberta (AP) - Wayne Gretzky stood at center ice in the building he made famous and saluted the fans in a tribute ceremony to mark the final Oilers game at Rexall Place.

Gretzky was among scores of former Oilers of the NHL and World Hockey Association eras to join fans bidding goodbye to the rink after almost 42 years of hockey.

Fans then watched the current Oilers, in their retro orange jerseys, down the Vancouver Canucks 6-2.