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    Sports Log: NASCAR looking into possible manipulation of Chase for the Sprint Cup championship field


    MWR’s moves at finish to face review

    NASCAR is reviewing evidence to determine if Michael Waltrip Racing deliberately attempted to manipulate the outcome of Saturday’s Federated Auto Parts 400, which set the Chase for the Sprint Cup championship field. NASCAR president Mike Helton said before Sunday’s Truck Series race at Iowa that officials in the scoring tower did not immediately see anything to believe Clint Bowyer’s spin with seven laps remaining at Richmond, Va., was suspicious. It brought out a caution with Ryan Newman leading, poised to claim the final berth in the 12-driver Chase field. Instead, it set in motion a chain of events that led to Bowyer teammate Martin Truex Jr. earning the final berth and Newman losing both the race and a spot in the Chase. An ESPN replay that included communication between Bowyer and his team implied the spin was deliberate, which Bowyer denied. The in-car audio framed the situation as his crew goading him into spinning to bring out the yellow while Newman, who was battling Truex for the second wild-card berth in the Chase, was leading. NASCAR did not have access to the audio until after the race, and it is presumably among the materials Helton reviewed Sunday. Also, it became apparent early Sunday that Bowyer and teammate Brian Vickers further aided Truex by taking a dive over the final three laps, aiding Joey Logano in improving his finishing position, eliminating Jeff Gordon from Chase contention, and freeing up a wild card for Truex. The AP reviewed communications for both Bowyer and Vickers on Sunday, and Vickers was told by MWR general manager Ty Norris to pit because ‘‘we need that 1 point.’’


    PawSox top Wings, advance to IL final

    The Pawtucket Red Sox shut out the Rochester Red Wings, 3-0, in a winner-take-all Game 5 of their first-round International League series, advancing to the final to defend the Governors’ Cup. The hosts held Rochester to four hits, all allowed in Charlie Haeger’s 5 innings. Jeremy Hazelbaker’s two-out triple sparked Pawtucket’s three-run second inning. Dan Butler knocked him in, and Heiker Meneses singled in Butler and Justin Henry. Pawtucket opens the finals on the road Tuesday against the Durham Bulls . . . Mets pitcher Matt Harvey will have his right elbow examined by Dr. James Andrews to help determine if the 24-year-old needs reconstruction surgery. Mets manager Terry Collins said he thought Harvey would have an examination this week, but no date has been set. Harvey was placed on the 15-day DL on Aug. 27 with a partial tear of the ulnar collateral ligament . . . Rangers Opening Day starter Matt Harrison, whose season ended after his second outing April 6 because of back problems that required surgery twice in a span of nine days to repair a herniated disc, is scheduled to undergo Thoracic Outlet Syndrome surgery on his right side Monday. Harrison missed the final three months of 2009 with the same ailment, then won 18 games last season.


    Svoboda wins Finals event

    In Davidson, N.C., Andrew Svoboda won the Chiquita Classic, beating Will MacKenzie with a par on the first hole of a playoff in the second tournament in the four-event Tour Finals series. Svoboda tapped in for par on the par-5 18th, then won when MacKenzie — who eagled the hole in regulation — missed a 5-footer. Svoboda shot a 2-under 70 to match MacKenzie at 12 under . . . Thomas Bjorn beat Craig Lee with a birdie on the first playoff hole to win the European Masters title in Crans-sur-Sierre, Switzerland. Bjorn sank his 12-foot putt on the par-4 18th after Lee’s birdie attempt from 15 feet slid left of the hole. Both finished regulation at 20-under 264 . . . Esteban Toledo won the Montreal Championship in Sainte-Julie, Quebec, for his second Champions Tour victory of the season, beating Kenny Perry with a birdie on the third extra hole. Toledo shot a 3-under 69 to match Perry at 5-under 211 . . . Nathan Smith won the deciding point in the 17-9 victory over Britain and Ireland in the Walker Cup, beating England’s Nathan Kimsey, 4 and 3, in the fifth singles match of the biennial amateur event at National Golf Links of America in Southampton, N.Y.