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Associated Press

Posted on March 4, 2013 at 7:30 AM


Edwards ends long drought at Phoenix

AVONDALE, Ariz. (AP) — Carl Edwards pulled away on a late start to snap a 70-race winless streak Sunday, the second long drought he's ended at Phoenix International Raceway.

Edwards broke the longest slump of his career by winning at Phoenix in 2010. He won for the first time since Las Vegas in 2011 by leading the final 78 laps on the 312-mile race around PIR's odd-shaped oval.

Coming off a miserable week at Daytona, where he wrecked five cars, Edwards got a push from defending Sprint Cup champion Brad Keselowski on the restart with two laps left. He pulled away to win the first non-restrictor-plate race with NASCAR's new Gen-6 car.

Edwards did his celebratory backflip for the first time in nearly two years, then went into the stands to celebrate with the fans — just like he did after his last win at PIR.


Patrick not hurt after hard hit at Phoenix

AVONDALE, Ariz. (AP) — Danica Patrick slammed her car hard into the wall during a race at Phoenix International Raceway, but was uninjured.

Patrick blew a right-front tire coming around turn 4 on Sunday and slammed into the wall. She careened back onto the track and was hit hard again by David Ragan, flipping her hood over the windshield and shredding the left front fender.

Patrick coasted to a stop near the inside wall with pieces of her car strewn across half the home straightaway. A smoking chunk of tire also flew into pit lane.

Patrick climbed out of her car and was quickly cleared by the infield care center.

She became the first woman to win a Sprint Cup pole and lead green-flag laps at the Daytona 500 last week.


No. 17 UCLA women beat Arizona 68-57

TUCSON, Ariz. (AP) — Alyssia Brewer scored 22 points on 11-for-14 shooting and No. 17 UCLA finished the Pac-12 regular season with a 68-57 victory over Arizona on Sunday.

Nirra Fields scored 21 and tied Brewer and Jasmine Dixon with a team-high eight rebounds for the Bruins (23-6, 14-4), who have won four in a row. UCLA is the third seed and will receive a bye in the Pac-12 tournament that begins Thursday in Seattle.

Markel Walker had 10 points and seven assists for the Bruins, who played without Thea Lemberger, who injured her elbow in Friday's win at Arizona State.

Davellyn White had 16 points, nine rebounds and seven assists for Arizona (12-17, 4-14).

The Wildcats have lost four in a row.


USC defeats Arizona State 67-60

TEMPE, Ariz. (AP) — Cassie Harberts had 12 points and 10 rebounds on Sunday and Southern California defeated Arizona State 67-60 in the teams' Pac-12 regular-season finale.

Christina Marinacci and Ariya Crook scored 13 points each for the Trojans (10-19, 7-11 Pac-12). Kiki Alofaituli scored 11 for USC.

The Trojans never trailed and led 34-23 at halftime, but the Sun Devils (13-17, 5-13) closed within four points four times in the second half, the last with 19 seconds remaining. Alexyz Vaioletama made one free throw and Marinacci made two to complete the scoring.

Janae Fulcher of Arizona State had game highs with 17 points and 13 rebounds.

Promise Amukamara added 10 points for ASU.


Zito throws 3 shutout innings, Giants beat D-backs

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. (AP) — Barry Zito pitched three shutout innings, Brandon Crawford had three hits and the San Francisco Giants beat the Arizona Diamondbacks 5-3 on Sunday.

John McDonald and Cliff Pennington each had two hits for the Diamondbacks, who have lost two in a row for the first time this spring. Adam Eaton, Willie Bloomquist and Jon Griffin drove in runs for Arizona.

Buster Posey drove in a run for the Giants. Francisco Peguero had two hits, including a double, and three RBIs.

Arizona starter Josh Collmenter gave up two runs and three hits in two innings.

Zito gave up two hits and struck out two — former teammates Cody Ross and Eric Chavez.


Rockies pitchers wild in 7-2 loss to Athletics

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. (AP) — Jorge De La Rosa and Tyler Chatwood were so wild that the Oakland Athletics barely had to swing to beat the Colorado Rockies 7-2 on Sunday.

Oakland scored its first four runs without putting the ball in play. De La Rosa and Chatwood combined to issue five walks and hit three batters with pitches in the first three innings. All three A's were plunked with the bases loaded — Michael Choice in the first, and Daric Barton and Scott Sizemore in the third.

Adam Rosales also drew a bases-loaded walk in the third.

Todd Helton went 0 for 2 in his first game since hip surgery on Aug. 9.

The 39-year-old Rockies first baseman, entering the final year of his contract, was arrested and charged with drunken driving last month.


Gomez, Estrada lead Brewers to 4-3 win over Cubs

MESA, Ariz. (AP) — Carlos Gomez homered and Taylor Green had two hits to help the Milwaukee Brewers beat a Chicago Cubs split squad 4-3 on Sunday.

Gomez and Green backed an impressive outing by Brewers right-hander Marco Estrada before he left to join Team Mexico for the World Baseball Classic. Estrada pitched four scoreless innings. He allowed one hit, walked two and struck out three.

Green singled home the second run of a two-run rally in the first inning against Cubs starter Edwin Jackson. Gomez's homer leading off the third came against reliever Drew Carpenter.

Jackson had a rough outing. He gave up two runs and two hits in two innings.

He also walked three, hit a batter with a pitch and made a throwing error on an attempted double play.


Brewers return offense that dominated NL pitching

PHOENIX (AP) — The Milwaukee Brewers quietly put together one of the most productive offenses in baseball last season, leading the NL in runs, homers and RBIs.

They hope to do the same thing with a group that returns largely intact this season.

Ryan Braun, Aramis Ramirez and the rest of the key parts of last year's batting order are back in 2013, although Milwaukee may have to weather some injuries to key players.

Corey Hart is out until at least late-April following surgery on his right knee, Aramis Ramirez sustained a slight knee strain on Saturday, and Mat Gamel is out for the season after tearing the anterior cruciate ligament in his right knee for the second straight season.

Still, manager Ron Roenicke believes he has players to be productive again.


Blanton allows solo homer in 1st Angels start

TEMPE, Ariz. (AP) — Joe Blanton allowed a first-inning solo homer to Brian Bogusevic in his first game in a Los Angeles Angels' uniform, a 4-2 loss to a Chicago Cubs' split squad Sunday.

Blanton, who agreed to a $15 million, two-year deal with the Angels during the offseason, allowed just the one hit in two innings, struck out two and walked none. Blanton was 10-13 with a 4.71 ERA for Philadelphia and the Los Angeles Dodgers last year.

Nick Struck, the Chicago Cubs' minor league pitcher of the year, made his second exhibition appearance and gave up two hits in three scoreless innings.

Cubs closer Carlos Marmol got into a bases-loaded, no-outs jam in the fourth when Josh Hamilton and Mark Trumbo singled, and Chris Iannetta (eye-uh-NET'-uh) was hit by a pitch. Andrew Romine grounded into a run-scoring, 4-6-3 double play, and Caleb Cowart lined out.

Brad Nelson hit a solo homer for the Cubs.


Angels' Trout takes high road on salary, position

TEMPE, Ariz. (AP) — Mike Trout is taking the high road about his salary and his position in the outfield, one day after his agent directed a statement at the Los Angeles Angels about both of them.

Trout said Sunday that he just wants to be in the lineup every day and that his time to make big money will come if he keeps producing the way he did last season, when he was voted AL Rookie of the Year and just missed out on winning the MVP.

The Angels renewed his contract Saturday for $510,000, just $20,000 above the league minimum, prompting his agent Craig Landis to call it well short of a "fair contract."

Landis went on to say that Trout would put the disappointment behind him, just as he had when he learned that he would not be the Angels' primary center fielder this season.


Samardzija to start Cubs' opener; Garza DL bound

MESA, Ariz. (AP) — Jeff Samardzija (suh-MAR'-juh) will be the opening-day starter for the Chicago Cubs, who said Matt Garza will start the season on the disabled list because of an injured muscle in his side that is preventing the right-hander from throwing.

Cubs manager Dale Sveum (swaym) said Sunday that Samardzija will start at Pittsburgh on April 1. He was 9-13 with a 3.81 ERA last season, when he had a 2.39 ERA in his last seven starts.

Samardzija will be joined in the rotation by Travis Wood, Carlos Villanueva (vee-ah-noo-WAY'-vah), Edwin Jackson and Scott Feldman.


Dodgers' Puig homered, Beckett overpowering

GLENDALE, Ariz. (AP) — Cuban defector Yasiel Puig hit his first home run, Josh Beckett threw three more scoreless innings and the Los Angeles Dodgers beat the Cleveland Indians 5-1 Sunday.

Puig signed by the Dodgers to a seven-year, $42 million in June, connected for a three-run shot in the seventh.

Beckett has allowed one hit in each of his two starts. He struck out three Sunday to run his total to six.

In a second appearance as the Dodgers designated hitter, Matt Kemp went 0 for 3. Kemp, who is coming off shoulder surgery, is 0 for 5 this spring.


Rangers' Martin breaks arm when hit by liner

SURPRISE, Ariz. (AP) — Rangers pitching prospect Martin Perez broke his left forearm after being hit by a line drive Sunday and will not throw for about four weeks, and Texas gave up homers to Kendrys Morales and Jesus Montero in a 7-6 loss to the Seattle Mariners.

The 21-year-old left-hander Perez was struck by a liner off Brad Miller's bat. Perez dropped to the ground as the ball deflected off his arm, just above his wrist for an infield single.

X-rays revealed he broke his left ulna. Perez is will not likely be able to throw until early April. He will continue his cardiovascular and conditioning program.

Morales homered in the first, a two-run shot. Montero connected in the seventh.

Seattle starter Joe Saunders worked two scoreless innings, allowing a hit and a walk.


Gordon homers, Davis sharp on mound for Royals

GOODYEAR, Ariz. (AP) — Alex Gordon homered, Mike Moustakas stroked two doubles to raise his average to .579 and the Kansas City Royals beat the Cincinnati Reds 8-1 Sunday to remain undefeated in 10 games.

Wade Davis pitched three scoreless innings to run his string to five in two starts. He allowed two hits and struck out three in his second start.

Reds right-hander Homer Bailey struck out five and allowed one single in two innings, but the bullpen allowed 12 hits and eight runs.

The Royals are the only undefeated team in the major leagues this spring, improving to 9-0-1.

They got three consecutive pinch-hit singles from Christian Colon, Xavier Nady and Brandon Wood in a four-run sixth.


White Sox Peavy roughed up in spring debut

PEORIA, Ariz. (AP) — Jake Peavy gave up an RBI double to Chase Headley and three runs overall in his first start of spring training, and the Chicago White Sox lost to the San Diego Padres 4-0 Sunday.

Peavy gave up five hits in three innings. Cameron Maybin and Nick Hundley each had RBI doubles off the former Padres star.

Padres starter Clayton Richard made his first spring start, too. He walked two in two hitless innings.

Tim Stauffer and Anthony Bass, competitors for a spot in San Diego's starting rotation, combined for three scoreless innings and five strikeouts.

Outfielder Jaff Decker homered for the Padres.