Braun finally admits to drug use
A month after acknowledging he made ‘‘mistakes,’’ Ryan Braun admitted taking performance-enhancing drugs during his NL MVP season of 2011. The suspended Milwaukee slugger said in a statement released Thursday by the Brewers that he took a cream and a lozenge containing banned substances while rehabilitating an injury. ‘‘It was a huge mistake for which I am deeply ashamed and I compounded the situation by not admitting my mistakes immediately,’’ Braun said. Last month Braun accepted a 65-game suspension resulting from Major League Baseball’s investigation of the Biogenesis of America anti-aging clinic. Braun tested positive for elevated testosterone in October 2011, but his 50-game suspension was overturned when an arbitrator ruled that the urine sample was mishandled. Braun apologized to the collector of the urine sample, whom he had disparaged, teammates, and commissioner Bud Selig among others.
Heyward out rest of regular season?
Braves outfielder Jason Heyward had surgery Thursday in Atlanta on his broken right jaw after he was struck by a pitch Wednesday. The team has not said how long he will be out, but he could miss the rest of the regular season. Atlanta hopes Heyward will recover in time for the playoffs . . . Giants outfielder Andres Torres was placed on the 15-day disabled list because of a strained left Achilles’ tendon and might not return this season. Torres is scheduled to get a second opinion next week and hopes to avoid surgery . . . The Mets signed former Red Sox righthander Daisuke Matsuzaka to a one-year contract and plan to start him in the opener of a weekend series against the Tigers . . . Jorge Romero hit a two-run homer in the top of the seventh, and Tijuana, Mexico, rallied past Aguadulce, Panama, 4-2, to earn a berth in the international championship game at the Little League World Series in South Williamsport, Pa.
Manziel placed on SEC’s second team
Southeastern Conference coaches rated Texas A&M quarterback Johnny Manziel as the league’s preseason second-team selection. Manziel became the first freshman to win the Heisman Trophy last season, but allegations that he received payment for autographs could threaten his eligibility, which might have had something to do with Manziel’s ranking behind Georgia’s Aaron Murray . . . The attorney for North Carolina State running back Shadrach Thornton said his client is receiving counseling that could lead to the dismissal of a misdemeanor charge of assault on a female. E. Lee Turner Jr. said the court will monitor Thornton’s progress as part of a deferred prosecution following his June arrest after an incident involving his girlfriend. Thornton, who ran for a team-best 694 yards in 2012, is suspended for the opener against Louisiana Tech under new coach Dave Doeren.
22 suspended in alleged match-fixing
The homes of 11 players were raided after El Salvador’s soccer federation in San Salvador suspended 22 players in an investigation into alleged match-fixing by the national team, including games against the US and Mexico . . . FIFA Secretary General Jerome Valcke expressed increasing confidence that Brazil’s hosting of the 2014 World Cup will be a success after an inspection tour of some of the country’s 12 host cities. He added there is a lot of work left to get some stadiums completed by the December deadline established by FIFA . . . US national team stars Abby Wambach, Alex Morgan, and Hope Solo are among 18 players chosen by coach Tom Sermanni to play Mexico Sept. 3.
Semifinals set at Winston-Salem Open
Sam Querrey, Jurgen Melzer, Alexandr Dolgopolov, and Gael Monfils advanced to the semifinals at the Winston-Salem Open tennis tournament in North Carolina . . . The US Postal Service is honoring tennis champion Althea Gibson with a commemorative stamp in its Black Heritage series. The stamp will be available in the US Friday. Gibson broke tennis’s color barrier in the 1950s as the first black entrant and champion at Wimbledon and the US national tournament . . . LaShawn Merritt won the 400 meters at the DN Galan Diamond League track and field meet in Stockholm in his first major race since regaining his world title last week. Merritt won in 44.69 seconds, more than a half-second ahead of world bronze medalist Luguelin Santos . . . Rebekkah Brunson scored 24 points to lead the Minnesota Lynx over the Sun, 91-77, in Uncasville, Conn.