OAKLAND (AP) - Billy Beane considers Jon Lester a proven ace who can carry a pitching staff through the playoffs, just like he did last fall. The general manager acquired Lester to make sure Oakland gets there first.
SANTA CLARA (AP) - Once most players had gone inside from practice on a hot day, there stood Antoine Bethea working to perfect a handshake with new 49ers teammate Demarcus Dobbs.
STANFORD (AP) - Venus Williams advanced to the Bank of the West quarterfinals Thursday night, beating fourth-seeded Victoria Azarenka 6-4, 7-6 (1).
AKRON, Ohio (AP) - Tiger Woods showed signs of a positive recovery Thursday at the Bridgestone Invitational. Not just from back surgery, but from making bogeys.
Baseball fans were still trying to sort out the dizzying deals for postseason aces Jon Lester and John Lackey, Home Run Derby champ Yoenis Cespedes and All-Star shortstop Asdrubal Cabrera when they were treated to a most curious sight Thursday.
OAKLAND (AP) - The Oakland Athletics have traded left-hander Tommy Milone to the Minnesota Twins for outfielder Sam Fuld.
NAPA (AP) - Chimdi Chekwa has dealt with so much in his first two NFL seasons that a matchup with wide receiver James Jones in practice seemed fairly easy in comparison for the Oakland cornerback.
RENTON, Wash. (AP) - Marshawn Lynch's holdout is over, ending one distraction so far for the Super Bowl champions.
AKRON, Ohio (AP) - Dustin Johnson is taking a leave of absence from golf to seek help for "personal challenges," a swift end to his season that will keep him from playing the PGA Championship, the FedEx Cup playoffs and the Ryder Cup.
OAKLAND (AP) - Oakland Raiders owner Mark Davis confirmed he has met with San Antonio officials but declined to disclose whether he has any interest in relocating the franchise to Texas.
HOUSTON (AP) - In the first inning against Houston, Jason Hammel picked up right where he left off since coming to the Oakland Athletics.
OAKLAND (AP) - Ray Guy built a Hall of Fame career of making other people wait.
SANTA CLARA (AP) - San Francisco wide receiver Anquan Boldin laughs - a big, hearty guffaw - and shakes his head.
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) - Jean Machi and the San Francisco Giants ended their six-game losing streak in the most wacky way. They don't care how it happened, any break is welcome these days.
LOS ANGELES (AP) - The House That Wooden Built is waterlogged.
NEW YORK (AP) - San Francisco Giants pitcher Matt Cain will have season-ending surgery next week to remove bone chips in his right elbow.
OAKLAND (AP) - Derek Norris singled up the middle with two outs and the bases loaded in the 10th inning against former Oakland closer Grant Balfour, and the Athletics beat the Tampa Bay Rays 3-2 on Monday night.
NEW YORK (AP) - His nickname is Kung Fu Panda. The New York Mets probably have other, not so cute, monikers for Pablo Sandoval.
DETROIT- Maybe this year they'll play seven.
WASHINGTON (AP) - Caleb Joseph homered and drove in three runs, J.J. Hardy had four hits and the Baltimore Orioles beat the Washington Nationals 7-3 on Monday night in a duel between neighboring first-place teams.
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) - Joe LaCava walked nearly every blade of grass on the 18th green at Valhalla Golf Club, jotting notes in his yardage book after stepping off the distances from every edge of the green to every possible pin position. It was just like any other Monday at a major.
NEW YORK (AP) - David Stern remembers the days when an NBA staff that numbered about two dozen was just trying to keep some teams in existence long enough to get them on national TV.
OAKLAND (AP) - James Shields pitched quite a gem for Kansas City. It certainly helped that Oakland abandoned its usual patient approach at the plate.
NEW YORK (AP) - On a weekend full of fine pitching performances and brisk games, Madison Bumgarner tossed the best game yet.
SANTA CLARA (AP) - Quinton Dial put a punishing hit on running back Alfonso Smith late in 11-on-11 work. Tony Jerod-Eddie pounded Jonathan Martin not once but twice, even sending him to his backside.
AKRON, Ohio (AP) - Tiger Woods was stricken with more back pain Sunday and withdrew after eight holes at the Bridgestone Invitational. He struggled to even take off his golf shoes before being driven away to an uncertain future.
PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) - Legend has it that Portland laid claim to the title "Soccer City USA" back in 1975 when the Timbers played their first NASL season. The nickname was later captured on an expansive banner displayed during a visit by Pele.
NEW YORK (AP) - NFL teams used to take Polaroid pictures of plays from atop the stadium during games then send them down to the field on a rope.
LONG POND, Pa. (AP) - Dale Earnhardt Jr. traded hats, waited for his cue, and flashed three fingers for the cameras.
STANFORD (AP) - Serena Williams stared at the court, took a deep breath and seemed to clear her head after falling behind in the first set. She dominated the rest of the way.