PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. (AP)New York Mets closer Edwin Díaz has a torn patellar tendon and is expected to miss the entire season after hurting his right knee while celebrating a victory in the World Baseball Classic.

Mets general manager Billy Eppler said Díaz had surgery Thursday. Without going into specifics, Eppler said a general timeline for recovery from this type of injury is about eight months.

Díaz, who turns 29 next week, retired the side in order in the ninth inning of a 5-2 victory over the Dominican Republic on Wednesday night that sent Puerto Rico to the World Baseball Classic quarterfinals. As Díaz and his teammates jumped together in the infield, the right-hander collapsed and reached for his right leg. He was taken off the field in a wheelchair.

The Mets signed Díaz to a five-year, $102 million contract – the largest ever for a closer – after he produced a spectacular 2022 season. All player contracts are covered by insurance through the WBC that spans the length of time the player is out with an injury suffered during the tournament.

NEW YORK (AP) – Major League Baseball is heightening in-game inspections by umpires for banned grip aides, concerned that use of foreign substances by pitchers increased again as time passed from a crackdown begun in June 2021.

“Umpires have been instructed to increase the frequency and scope of foreign substance checks this year, including randomized checks of fingers (including removal of rings worn on either hand of pitchers), hands, hats, gloves, belts/waistlines, and pants,” senior vice president of on-field operations Michael Hill wrote in a memo.

Hill sent the memo to owners, CEOs, team presidents, general managers, field managers and all major and minor league players.

Also, Major League Baseball struck a deal with Zoom Video Communications Inc. allowing on-field umpires to watch videos being evaluated by the replay operations center during contested calls.


ATHENS, Ga. (AP) – Georgia defensive tackle Jalen Carter was given 12 months’ probation and a $1,000 fine after pleading no contest to misdemeanor charges of reckless driving and racing related to a crash that killed Bulldogs offensive lineman Devin Willock and a recruiting staff member.

Projected as one of the top players in the NFL draft, Carter was sentenced in Athens-Clarke County Municipal Court, according to a statement from attorney Kim T. Stephens. Carter also must complete 50 hours of community service and a state-approved defensive driving course, and his driving privileges have been suspended for 120 days.

The state can’t bring additional charges against Carter, the statement said, adding that Carter entered the pleas “in order to resolve this matter in the most efficient manner possible.”

The Athens-Clarke County Police Department had issued an arrest warrant for Carter on March 1, alleging that he raced his 2021 Jeep Trackhawk against a 2021 Ford Expedition driven by recruiting staffer Chandler LeCroy on Jan. 15. LeCroy, 24, and Willock died in the crash, which happened hours Georgia celebrated its second consecutive national championship with a parade and ceremony.

CINCINNATI (AP) – Cincinnati Bengals running back Joe Mixon was armed with a legal weapon when a teenage boy was shot near the player’s home this month, but he did not fire the gun or do anything illegal, authorities said as they announced the indictments of Mixon’s sister and her boyfriend.

Lamonte Brewer, whom authorities have identified as the shooter, remained at large, while Shalonda Mixon was apprehended Thursday afternoon by the Southern Ohio Fugitive Apprehension Strike Team, The Cincinnati Enquirer reported, citing U.S. Marshals supervisor Charles Sanso.

Brewer fired several shots and is charged with felonious assault, tampering with evidence and two weapons counts, Prosecutor Melissa Powers said. Shalonda Mixon is charged with tampering with evidence and obstructing justice. Brewer faces up to 20 years in prison if convicted on all counts, while Shalonda Mixon faces up to four years. It was not known if either had an attorney to speak for them.

Joe Mixon owns his gun legally and faces no charges, Powers said.

ATLANTA (AP) – Desmond Ridder’s status as the Atlanta Falcons’ starting quarterback was confirmed by his new backup, Taylor Heinicke.

Heinicke signed his two-year contract with the Falcons believed to be worth up to $20 million and then said his job will be to support Ridder, who started the final four games of the 2022 season as a rookie.

That was a surprise to anyone who assumed the 30-year-old Heinicke, who has 25 career starts in five seasons with Houston, Carolina and Washington, would compete with Ridder for the starting job.

NEW YORK (AP) – NFL lawyers are urging a New York judge to change her mind and agree to let racial discrimination claims against the league and its teams go to arbitration rather than trial.

In written arguments late Wednesday, the lawyers said Judge Valerie E. Caproni in Manhattan should reverse her recent decision finding that some claims by NFL coach Brian Flores can go to trial.

Flores, the new defense coordinator for the Minnesota Vikings, sued the league and three teams last year, saying the NFL was “rife with racism,” particularly in its hiring and promotion of Black coaches.


PALM HARBOR, Fla. (AP) – Ryan Brehm turned a good round into a memorable one, making a hole-in-one on the par-3 17th hole at Innisbrook for a 5-under 66 that led to a three-way share of the lead at the Valspar Championship.

Stephan Jaeger also had a 66, while Adam Schenk joined them with the low score in the afternoon on the Copperhead course.

Jordan Spieth, back at Innisbrook for the first time in five years, had a bogey-free round and was particularly sharp with the putter, making birdie putts of 60 feet and 30 feet on his way to a 67. Also at 67 were former U.S. Open champion Lucas Glover and Maverick McNealy.

This is the first lead for Brehm since he won the Puerto Rico Open last year in his final start to try to keep a PGA Tour card. His ace came with a 6-iron from 196 yards, and he closed with a par.

ST. FRANCIS BAY, South Africa (AP) – David Ravetto and Kristian Krogh Johannessen each shot 5-under 67 at windy St. Francis Links to share the first-round lead in the SDC Championship.

Norway’s Johannessen had a blemish-free round as the tournament made its debut on the European tour. France’s Ravetto had six birdies and a bogey. A handful of players weren’t able to complete the opening round because of darkness.


SOLDEU, Andorra (AP) – Lara Gut-Behrami of Switzerland won the women’s World Cup super-G and Mikaela Shiffrin finished 14th in her first race since setting the record for career victories with 87.

Gut-Behrami had a near-flawless run on the Aliga course to win the last super-G of the season and overtake Italian rival Elena Curtoni in the standings. Curtoni finished 1.23 seconds behind in 10th.

Shiffrin has locked up the overall, giant slalom and slalom titles before the last races in her strongest events. The final slalom is Saturday and the giant slalom is Sunday. The American surpassed Swedish great Ingemar Stenmark on the victory list with No. 87 last Saturday.

Marco Odermatt of Switzerland won the men’s super-G to close in on the 23-year-old record for points in a season.

The victory raised Odermatt’s tally to 1,942 points, leaving him 58 short of the mark set by Austrian great Hermann Maier in the 1999-2000 season. Odermatt can break the record of 2,000 with a top-three finish Saturday in the giant slalom.


KIAGLI, Rwanda (AP) – FIFA President Gianni Infantino was re-elected by acclaim to another four-year term after suggesting the financial results under his leadership would keep an industry CEO in the job for life.

The Swiss lawyer had no opponent in the election and won by acclaim instead of a formal vote by the FIFA Congress. The 211 member federations saw their basic annual funding from FIFA rise from $250,000 to $2 million since his first win in 2016.

FIFA had $4 billion in reserves after the World Cup in Qatar finished in December. It has conservatively forecast record revenue of at least $11 billion through the 2026 World Cup in North America.

Also, FIFA said the Women’s World Cup this year in Australia and New Zealand is getting an increase in prize money of more than 300%. The $152 million fund for the first 32-team tournament is a huge boost from the 24-team edition in 2019 and 10 times what it was in 2015.


INDIAN WELLS, Calif. (AP) – Top-ranked Iga Swiatek breezed past Sorana Cirstea 6-2, 6-3 to reach the semifinals of the BNP Paribas Open.

Swiatek, the defending champion, took a 4-0 lead in the second set and converted her second match point to close it out. Next up for Swiatek is No. 10 seed Elena Rybakina, who outlasted Karolina Muchova 7-6 (4), 2-6, 6-4.

Jannik Sinner beat defending champion Taylor Fritz 6-4, 4-6, 6-4 to become the first Italian man to reach the semifinals of the 47-year-old tournament. The 11th-seeded Sinner will meet top-seeded Carlos Alcaraz, who beat No. 8 Felix Auger-Aliassime 6-4, 6-4.


TULSA, Okla. (AP) – Cornell’s Yianni Diakomihalis and Iowa’s Spencer Lee remained on track to win their fourth Division I wrestling titles, and Penn State led the team race after the opening day at the national championships.

Lee pinned Air Force’s Tucker Owens in 36 seconds in the opening session of the 125-pound class. He beat Michigan’s Jack Medley 16-0 in the evening to advance to the quarterfinal round Friday. His win streak is an NCAA Division I-best 57.

Diakomihalis beat Cornell’s Dom Demas 6-1 in his opener at 149, then got a fall against North Carolina State’s Jackson Arrington at 2:11 in the evening.

Penn State sent seven wrestlers into quarterfinals. The Nittany Lions topped Iowa 26-21.5. Missouri was third with 17.5.


KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – Virginia’s Kate Douglass smashed the NCAA record by 1.7 seconds in the 200-yard individual medley and the Cavaliers continue to lead the NCAA women’s swimming and diving championships.

Douglass finished in 1:48.37 to set an American record. Stanford’s Torri Huske and Virginia’s Alex Walsh, the second and third-place finishers, also beat the previous record.

Douglass, along with Gretchen Walsh, Lexi Cuomo and Maxine Parker, captured Virginia’s second straight title in the 200-yard freestyle relay in 1.24.51. Virginia finished the second day of the four-day event with 208.5 points. Texas was second with 162.


NEW YORK (AP) – St. Louis Blues goalie Jordan Binnington was suspended for two games without pay by the NHL for throwing a punch at Minnesota Wild forward Ryan Hartman on Wednesday night.

Binnington received a match penalty in the second period of the Blues’ 8-5 loss for swinging his blocker glove at Hartman. Binnington left his crease and went after Hartman right after giving up the Wild’s fifth goal of the night. Minnesota goalie Marc-Andre Fleury skated the length of the ice to confront the unmasked Binnington, but the two were separated by officials.

The suspension forced the Blues to call up Joel Hofer from Springfield of the AHL to serve as an emergency goaltender.


ATLANTA (AP) – Atlanta Hawks guard Bogdan Bogdanovic signed a $68 million, four-year extension through the 2026-27 season.

Bogdanovic is averaging 14.1 points in 43 games this season. The deal came after the 30-year-old Serb declined a $18 million player option for the 2023-24 season.