Hall of Fame skipper dies
Dick Williams, a Hall of Fame baseball manager who guided back-to-back World Series champions with the Oakland A’s, died on Thursday at his Las Vegas home at age 82. Williams went 1,571-1,421 in a total of 21 seasons as a manager with Oakland, the Boston Red Sox, Montreal Expos, California Angels, Seattle Mariners and San Diego Padres. Williams, who was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 2008, followed 1920s manager Bill McKechnie as only the second man to guide three different clubs into the World Series, becoming the first to do so with teams from both leagues. In 1972 and 1973, Williams masterminded the World Series triumphs of the Oakland A’s. He also managed the Boston Red Sox to an AL crown in 1967 and guided San Diego to a NL title in 1984.
Fans vote for final All Stars
Chicago White Sox first baseman Paul Konerko and Philadelphia Phillies outfielder Shane Victorino were selected in Internet fan voting for Tuesday’s MLB All-Star Game. Major League Baseball announced the selections on Thursday, five days before Konerko will join the American League lineup against Victorino and the National League squad in the annual mid-season showcase of stars. Konerko, named to his fifth all-star squad with 8.4 million votes, lives near the site of the game in Phoenix, Arizona. Victorino received 9.2 million votes, 6.7 million less than when he won the fan vote in 2009, but enough for a wire-to-wire win.
Kerry Collins calls it a career
Kerry Collins retired from the NFL on Thursday after 16 seasons as a quarterback, the last of them as a late-season replacement starter for the Tennessee Titans. Collins completed 3,439 of 6,163 passes for 40,441 yards and 206 touchdowns with 195 interceptions during 195 career games with the Carolina Panthers, New Orleans Saints, Oakland Raiders and New York Giants. The fifth overall selection of the 1995 NFL Draft led teams into the playoffs four times, guiding the Giants into the 2001 Super Bowl, where they were beaten 34-7 by the Baltimore Ravens. Collins, 38, said last month that he hoped to return once the NFL’s ongoing player lockout ends, but the layoff and uncertainty helped change his mind.
Mets look to dismiss lawsuit
Owners of the New York Mets asked a US federal judge on Thursday to dismiss the US$1 billion lawsuit against them by the trustee seeking money for victims of Bernard Madoff’s Ponzi scheme. Fred Wilpon, Saul Katz and others at Sterling Equities said the trustee Irving Picard cannot show they knew they were enabling Madoff to commit fraud at Bernard L Madoff Investment Securities LLC, where they were customers, or acted in bad faith. These defendants also rejected Picard’s allegations that they were repeatedly warned by members of their inner circle, including principals at the hedge fund Sterling Stamos, that Madoff’s firm was a “scam,” “too good to be true” or a “black box,” or that they should not invest with Madoff.
Black Cats sign United duo
Sunderland on Thursday completed a double swoop of Manchester United defenders, bringing Wes Brown and John O’Shea to the club on four-year contracts. Brown, 31, and 30-year-old O’Shea joined for undisclosed fees, after United last month accepted an offer of about ￡12 million (US$19.2 million) for the pair and midfielder Darron Gibson, O’Shea’s Ireland international teammate. Brown, who can play at centerback or rightback, made his United debut in the club’s 1998-1999 treble--winning season and went on to make 361 appearances. “We are delighted to welcome a player of Wes’ ability, experience and character to the club,” said Sunderland coach Steve Bruce, himself a former United centerback. Brown won two Champions League titles, five Premier League winners’ medals, two FA Cups and two League Cups with United and has been capped 23 times by England.