Monday’s Sports In Brief
DENVER (AP) — Pete Alonso danced to his second straight Home Run Derby title, besting Shohei Ohtani, Trey Mancini and Juan Soto on a night of record long balls in the thin Rocky Mountain air of Coors Field.
The New York Mets first baseman hit 74 total home runs and beat Mancini 23-22 in the final round Monday, joining Ken Griffey Jr. (1998-99) and Yoenis Céspedes (2013-14) in winning consecutive titles.
Batting second, Alonso trailed 22-17 after the first two minutes of the final round, then hit six homers on six swings over the first 28 seconds of his final minute.
Mancini, who returned this season from cancer treatment, was the sentimental favorite, while Alonso was the most animated of the eight sluggers as the longball competition returned after a one-year absence caused by the coronavirus pandemic.
With custom bats in the Mets’ royal blue and orange, and matching shoes and batting gloves, Alonso was a human bobblehead, nodding on beat in the batter’s box as he stepped out and danced. He motioned with his arms to whip up fans during a timeout.
New York’s 26-year-old first baseman has a chance to match Griffey, who also win in 1994, as the only three-time winner.
LAS VEGAS (AP) — These games don’t count. Right now, that is the only saving grace for USA Basketball.
And for quite probably the first time in 29 years of NBA players suiting up for the national team, there was a smattering of boos when a game ended — on home soil, no less.
Patty Mills scored 22 points and Australia held the U.S. without a field goal for the final 4:34 on the way to beating the Americans 91-83, dropping the three-time defending Olympic gold medalists to 0-2 in their five-game slate of exhibitions leading up to the Tokyo Games.
“I thought we got better tonight,” said U.S. coach Gregg Popovich, whose team lost to Nigeria on Saturday. “After a short time together, there’s a lot of things that have to be covered, but the first half and the second half were two different beasts.
“In the first half, we defended the way we wanted to defend. ... We rebounded better. We moved the ball better at the offensive end and had more pace. In the second half, we tired out.”
Joe Ingles scored 17 points, Matisse Thybulle scored 12 and Chris Goulding had 11 for Australia.
“We walked into this game expecting to win,” Ingles said.
Damian Lillard led the U.S. with 22 points, while Kevin Durant scored 17 and Bradley Beal finished with 12. But the Americans wasted a 10-point second-half lead, and have dropped back-to-back games for just the third time since NBA players began wearing the red, white and blue in 1992.
CHICAGO (AP) — Duncan Keith is heading to the Edmonton Oilers in the latest departure of a cornerstone player from the Chicago Blackhawks’ Stanley Cup core, a move that could help the club speed up a long-term rebuild.
Chicago traded Keith, a two-time Norris Trophy winner, to Edmonton along with minor league forward Tim Soderlund for young defenseman Caleb Jones and a conditional 2022 third-round draft pick.
Keith asked the Blackhawks for a trade to Western Canada to be closer to his 8-year-old son, Colton, after they spent long stretches apart last season.
No salary was retained in the first blockbuster trade of the NHL offseason since the Stanley Cup Final ended last week. Keith has two years left on his contract at a salary-cap hit just over $5.5 million. He turns 38 on Friday.
The 2022 pick becomes a second-rounder if Edmonton reaches next year’s Stanley Cup Final and Keith is among the top four Oilers defensemen in total ice time through three rounds. Asked what he had left in the tank, Keith said: “I feel like I have a lot. ... We’ll see what happens when we get on the ice.”
RIO DE JANEIRO (AP) — There were 179 known COVID-19 cases related to the Copa America, Brazil’s health ministry said, up 13 from its previous update 17 days ago.
The ministry did not say how seriously the disease evolved in any of the infected.
The figure also did not contemplate possible contagion among a few thousand guests who watched Lionel Messi’s Argentina beat Brazil 1-0 on Saturday in the final at Maracana Stadium. The final was the only match in the tournament to have spectators in the stands.
“The very low contagion certifies that Copa America took place in Brazil with safety and didn’t cause an increase in COVID-19 numbers,” the health ministry said in a statement.
Health experts said before the tournament that a new surge of the virus was expected in Brazil by the end of June, but that did not materialize.
About 26% of Brazil’s population has been partly vaccinated against the virus, says Our World in Data, an online research site. That figure was nearing 14% when the tournament kicked off.
TORONTO (AP) — Toronto FC striker Jozy Altidore has returned to full training with the team after spending more than seven weeks working out on his own.
The Major League Soccer club confirmed his return for the first session at the team’s practice facility since a 3-2 win last week at New England.
Altidore’s future in Toronto has been up in the air since a confrontation during a game in late May with former coach Chris Armas when the star striker was substituted in the 70th minute of a 1-0 loss to Orlando City. The 31-year-old Altidore is in his seventh season in Toronto.
Armas has since been fired after a 1-8-2 start to the season. He was replaced by assistant coach Javier Perez.
With 75 goals in all competitions, Altidore is second on TFC’s all-time scoring list, behind only Sebastian Giovinco’s 83 goals. Altidore has only appeared in four games this season, with one goal in 189 minutes.
More AP sports: https://apnews.com/hub/apf-sports and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports