National Sports Headlines from NBC Sports

Ex-Eagles WR Jackson to sign with Redskins

WASHINGTON (AP) The Washington Redskins made their biggest move yet of the offseason Tuesday night, adding three-time Pro Bowl receiver DeSean Jackson less than a week after the dynamic playmaker was released by the rival Philadelphia Eagles.

Jackson's publicist tweeted that Jackson was signing with the Redskins following two days of meeting with coaches and officials.

Jackson also broadcast the news, tweeting: "ITS GOIN DOWN !! BURGUNDY & GOLD".

He arrived in the D.C. area Monday night and spent much of Tuesday at Redskins Park while his agent negotiated with the front office.

Jackson set career-highs with 82 catches for 1,332 yards last season for the NFC East champion Eagles, but Philadelphia tried to trade him and then cut him last week amid reports of off-the-field concerns. Jackson issued a statement denying he was associated with street gangs.

The Redskins, coming off a 3-13 season, had been looking for a versatile threat to add to an offense that includes Robert Griffin III, Pierre Garcon, Andre Roberts, Jordan Reed and Alfred Morris.

Jackson becomes the second player the Redskins have lured from an NFC East rival this offseason. Defensive lineman Jason Hatcher signed with Washington after eight seasons with the Dallas Cowboys.

Jackson's signing is the first headliner move since the hiring of coach Jay Gruden and since general manager Bruce Allen was put in charge of the roster, but it echoes a familiar pattern from past years under Redskins owner Dan Snyder: Go after the hot name and live with whatever baggage there might be. The strategy has often failed - Albert Haynesworth and Donovan McNabb are recent examples - but the 27-year-old Jackson is still in his prime.

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UConn and Notre Dame headline women's Final Four

UConn and Notre Dame have been on a collision course all season for what would be an unprecedented national championship game.

Now the two unbeaten teams are each one victory away from a showdown in Music City. Standing in the way of that historic matchup are Maryland and Stanford.

"If they just wanted a Connecticut-Notre Dame showdown, what'd they make us do this for?" Stanford coach Tara VanDerveer quipped.

The Cardinal will face the top-seeded Huskies while the Irish will play the Terrapins on Sunday in the Final Four in Nashville, Tenn. Both games are rematches from earlier in the season.

Connecticut, which has won 44 straight games, advanced to the national semifinals for the seventh straight season. The Huskies won the national championship last year and are trying to win a record ninth title after beating Texas A&M in the regional finals.

"It's not easy to beat anybody at this time of the year because everybody is playing their best basketball," UConn coach Geno Auriemma said. "We beat a pretty good team ..., and I'm proud of my team. I thought we were really, really good when we needed to be really, really good."

Like the Huskies, the Irish have been to four straight Final Fours. They are the sixth school to reach the national semifinals in four consecutive years, joining UConn, LSU, Stanford, Louisiana Tech and Tennessee.

"It means so much to our program. I think it's a statement," McGraw said. "When Skylar (Diggins) came in, I think people expected that we would be in the Final Four, and then when Skylar graduated I don't think anyone expected that we'd be back in the Final Four. So I think it says a lot about this team."

The Irish's chances of winning their first national championship since 2001 took a big blow when forward Natalie Achonwa tore the anterior cruciate ligament in her left knee in the regional final victory over Baylor.

"We still believe," McGraw said. "She got us to this point, now somebody else has to finish it."

Achonwa was third on the team at 14.9 points per game, but the Irish will miss her most on the boards since she led the Irish in rebounding with 7.7 per game.

The Terps advanced to their first Final Four since winning the national championship in 2006.

"There was a lot of deja vu the last couple days," Maryland coach Brenda Frese said. "It brings back special memories from 2006. Really, the teamwork is the same, when you talk about your players and your staff and support staff, very similar to '06 in terms of just being lined up together."

Frese doesn't mind that all the talk seems to be about the two unbeaten teams.

"I love it. It's par for the course," she said. "We'll just try to fly under the radar and be who we are. Nobody expected us to be able to pull off this upset. It's easy to say that a team should win on their home court, but this team just keeps believing and they just keep staying grounded, and we'll just continue to be true to ourselves."

Maryland will have a chance to avenge an 87-83 loss to Notre Dame in late January. Both Stanford and Notre Dame advanced winning regional finals at home, while Maryland had to go into Louisville before 14,002 to move on.

"We had them at home and let it slip away," Maryland star Alyssa Thomas said. "We're a different team now and looking forward to the matchup."

Reaching the Final Four was about the only thing missing from Thomas' stellar career.

While it's her first trip to the big stage, fellow All-American Chiney Ogwumike has the Cardinal back in the national semifinals for the sixth time in seven years after beating North Carolina 74-65. Stanford was eliminated in the regional semifinals by Georgia last season, ending a streak of five straight trips to the Final Four.

Now Ogwumike has the Cardinal back in the national semifinals and trying to win their first championship since 1992. The Cardinal have had their chances, losing to Tennessee in the 2008 championship game and to Connecticut for the 2010 title. Stanford also lost to UConn in the 2009 national semifinals, to Texas A&M in the 2011 semis and Baylor in the same round the following year.

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Follow Doug on Twitter at http://www.twitter.com/dougfeinberg

Angels coach Don Baylor has surgery on broken leg

ANAHEIM, Calif. (AP) Los Angeles Angels hitting coach Don Baylor had surgery on his broken right leg Tuesday after getting hurt while catching the ceremonial first pitch on opening day.

Baylor had a plate and screws inserted in his leg during 5 1/2 hours of surgery at UC Irvine Medical Center.

Manager Mike Scioscia has no idea how long Baylor will be out of uniform, but he expects to consult regularly with the 64-year-old former Rockies and Cubs manager during his recovery from Monday's bizarre injury.

"Don is one tough guy," Scioscia said. "He's not giving in to anything. He wants to get this done, wants to come back and wants to help us. Once the surgery gets done, let's see what he can do. He's trying to put his best foot forward."

Baylor, who joined the Los Angeles coaching staff in October, will stay in the hospital for two more days of recovery from the surgery performed by Dr. John Scolaro.

He was in surgery while the Angels prepared for their second game against the Seattle Mariners, attempting to move forward after the injury cast a pall on their season before it even began.

"I still can't believe what happened, I really can't," Angels assistant hitting coach Dave Hansen said. "That shock is still there. I just can't get that out of my head. ... We'll hold him close and give him as much support as we can."

Hansen will take over while Baylor is out, and the Angels added minor-league hitting coordinator Paul Sorrento to the major league staff to assist him.

Baylor, who spent six of his 19 major league seasons as a player in Anaheim, was hurt while merely squatting to catch the first pitch from Vladimir Guerrero. The two former Angels sluggers are the only AL MVPs in franchise history.

Baylor was helped off the field shortly before Jered Weaver took the mound. The Angels had little chance to process the injury before the game, but it began to sink in after the 10-3 loss.

Hansen said the Angels' coaches all called Baylor after the game to express their support and sympathy - but Baylor only wanted to talk about how his hitters had performed against Felix Hernandez.

"He's probably strapped up there, knee in a brace, and he's wondering how our boys did," Hansen said with a laugh. "We were as sad as we can be, and he's thinking about hitting."

Baylor clearly has made an impact on the Angels in just a few months on their coaching staff. The Angels already refer to Baylor as Groove, the nickname bestowed on him by Frank Robinson during his playing days.

Recovery from a broken femur can take several months, but the Angels aren't speculating on Baylor's availability for coaching.

"Knowing Don, he's going to want to come on our next road trip," Scioscia said. "He'll be watching the games and have input for sure. ... Don will be connected, even if he's not able to get out physically to the ballpark. He'll watch video. He'll text me opinions on lineups. Don has a really good feel for that."

Sorrento, the former major league first baseman, interviewed for the chance to replace Jim Eppard last winter, but the Angels hired Baylor and Hansen. Sorrento's familiarity with Scioscia and the Angels' system made him a natural fit for the job while Baylor is out.

"The one thing we can't replace is Don's presence, and we're going to miss that moving forward," Scioscia said.

Jeter's last season begins with 6-2 loss to Astros

HOUSTON (AP) Jesus Guzman and L.J. Hoes homered off CC Sabathia to help the Houston Astros roll to a 6-2 win Tuesday night in the first game of Derek Jeter's farewell tour with the New York Yankees.

Jeter's final big league season began by being plunked on the left arm by Scott Feldman and ended 1 for 3 with a single. The 13-time All-Star who helped New York to five World Series titles announced in February his 20th season would be his last.

The Astros added Dexter Fowler and Feldman to improve a team coming off three straight 100-loss seasons. On the first day, it worked.

Fowler had two doubles as Houston jumped on Sabathia for six runs in the first two innings. Feldman allowed two hits in 6 2-3 innings.

Union question looms as Northwestern practices

EVANSTON, Ill. (AP) When members of Northwestern's football team had the chance to sign union cards back in January, some players signed their names, others did not.

Running back Venric Mark said Tuesday that he wondered if the ones who did realized the ramifications of the decision and where it would lead.

"I don't know if people kind of knew what they were going to get into or if they thought it was going to turn out the way it did," he said. "But at the end of the day, now it's time to get back to work. I mean, we have a job to do."

Whether being a student athlete is a job is at the center of a national debate over whether college athletes should unionize. The Wildcats resumed spring practice Tuesday for the first time after a decision from a regional labor official that cleared the way for the formation of a union, setting up Northwestern as ground zero for the effort to organize athletes. The school is appealing.

Former Wildcats quarterback Kain Colter has been serving as the face of the movement. Former UCLA linebacker Ramogi Huma, the designated president of the would-be union, said last week that the scholarship players would vote within 30 days on whether to authorize the College Athletes Players Association to represent them. The pair will be in Washington on Wednesday to meet with members of Congress.

For now, there's a long list of unanswered questions before the team, such as when exactly the vote would be held, whether scholarships would be counted as taxable income and how it would affect the training schedule in a "work week" for those who play on the team.

Could there be a division between players who signed union cards and those who did not? And what about the team's relationship with coach Pat Fitzgerald?

"It doesn't threaten anything," said Mark, who would not say whether or not he signed a union card.

"Northwestern has treated us all well and we know that. And we know that it is a privilege to be here so at the end of the day we're all going to support our former teammate, but we also know we're here to get a degree and we're also here to play football."

If Fitzgerald felt he was in an awkward spot, he wasn't about to say so on Tuesday.

"No. Any football questions?" he said.

Fitzgerald had not addressed the ruling from a regional director of the National Labor Relations Board with the team as of Tuesday morning. He and athletic administrators had an afternoon meeting with the school's lawyers.

"You know there's a lot of things that we'll discuss here (with the team), but from the standpoint of the way that we've operated here, I've got full confidence in the way we run our program and the guys have been terrific and I think they've shown the commitment to the program," Fitzgerald said. "So it's no change for us."

Unionization would be a huge change to the landscape.

Colter believes athletes lack basic protections, such as the guarantee of medical coverage and the promise of a four-year scholarship at most institutions. Scholarships are often renewed on an annual basis, and athletes feel vulnerable as a result, particularly if there's a change in coaches or philosophy.

Colter has also testified about abandoning the idea of entering a pre-med program because of the time demands Northwestern places on its football players. He has also stressed that he enjoyed his time there and has praised Fitzgerald.

Defensive lineman Chance Carter said he signed a union card. But he doesn't know how the team would vote if they have to make a decision this month to form a union.

"I don't know," Carter said. "I'm not sure what everyone's reaction is. ... A lot of us just got back in town (after spring break). We're trying to figure things out."

Carter said he only read the first and last parts of an email message from Colter addressing the ruling. He did say that Colter would answer players' questions and address their concerns face-to-face when he returns to campus. Carter wasn't sure exactly when that will happen.

Mets' Parnell has partially torn elbow ligament

NEW YORK (AP) Mets closer Bobby Parnell has a partially torn elbow ligament after just 25 pitches this season and might need surgery.

The injury means 36-year-old Jose Valverde is likely to take over as closer for now in an already thin bullpen. Valverde, a three-time All-Star, has struggled with control in recent years.

Parnell gave up Denard Span's tying double in the ninth inning during Monday's opening 9-7 loss to Washington. It was the right-hander's first save opportunity since a neck injury that required surgery and sidelined him for the final two months last season.

He complained of tightness in his right elbow after Monday's game. The Mets said the 29-year-old was examined Tuesday at the Hospital for Special Surgery, had an MRI and was diagnosed with a partial tear of the right medial collateral ligament.

Also Tuesday, injured Mets starter Jonathon Niese pitched five innings in a simulated game against Class A St. Lucie at the club's spring facility in Florida. The left-hander allowed four runs, two earned, and five hits while throwing 76 pitches.

Niese was hampered by elbow inflammation in spring training. He could come off the disabled list to start Sunday against Cincinnati.

"It felt great. Obviously, the injury is behind me and I'm ready for the season to start," he said.

Niese was particularly strong early on, breaking a pair of bats in the first inning and striking out catcher Nelfi Zapata on a curveball in the dirt.

"For the most part, I think I'll get better with each start. I'm still kind of in the process of getting my arm in shape, but my next outing will be 90 or 95 pitches," he said, alluding to the game against the Reds.

"The timetable is still the same."

New York plans to bring up Kyle Farnsworth to take Parnell's roster spot before Wednesday's game against the Nationals. Infielder Wilmer Flores also is likely to be recalled from the minors to replace second baseman Daniel Murphy, who would go on paternity leave.

Parnell was 5-5 with a 2.16 ERA and 22 saves in 26 chances last year. He averaged 92.1 mph for 20 two-seam fastballs during Monday's outing, according to fangraphs.com, down from 94.9 mph last year and 96 mph in 2012.

New York said he received a plasma injection and will rest about two weeks. Parnell then will start a throwing program, and a decision on surgery will be made after that.

The Mets already are without sidelined ace Matt Harvey, who is likely to miss the entire season following elbow surgery Oct. 22 on a partial tear of his right ulnar collateral ligament.

Several pitchers have torn elbow ligaments this year, including Atlanta's Kris Medlen and Brandon Beachy, Arizona's Patrick Corbin, Detroit's Bruce Rondon, and Oakland's Jarrod Parker. Braves pitcher Cory Gearrin is being examined for a ligament injury.

Valverde has 286 saves in an 11-year big league career with Arizona, Houston and Detroit. He was 0-1 with a 5.59 ERA for Detroit last year, converting nine saves in 12 chances before he was cut from the big league roster in mid-June 21. He then had seven saves with a 4.09 ERA in 11 games at Toledo and was released Aug. 7.

He got four straight outs Monday in his Mets debut, striking out Ryan Zimmerman, Jayson Werth and Bryce Harper.

Mattingly: Kershaw's recovery to take some time

SAN DIEGO (AP) Reigning NL Cy Young Award winner Clayton Kershaw won't be ready to come off the disabled list when he's eligible to be activated on April 14, Los Angeles Dodgers manager Don Mattingly said Tuesday.

"This thing is going to take some time," Mattingly said before the Dodgers played the San Diego Padres.

The Dodgers said that after consultation with Dr. Neal ElAttrache and a review of an MRI scan, Kershaw will be placed on a rehab that includes a submaximal throwing program for the next two to three weeks. He will then be re-evaluated by ElAttrache to determine when he can start throwing at increased velocity.

Kershaw will likely have to make a rehab start before he can return, Mattingly said.

Kershaw was placed on the DL on Sunday with a swollen muscle in his left upper back. He already had been scratched from his scheduled start on Sunday after an MRI revealed the problem.

Mattingly says Kershaw was supposed to have thrown before Tuesday's game but didn't because it was cool and damp.

Also Tuesday, Mattingly said outfielder Matt Kemp is close to coming off the disabled list, but he'll have to prove that he's not afraid to slide into a base or stop quickly while rounding a base.

Kemp is rehabbing from ankle surgery.

Notre Dame's injured Achonwa out for Final Four

SOUTH BEND, Ind. -- Notre Dame forward Natalie Achonwa will miss the Final Four with a left knee injury, a big blow to the national championship hopes of the Fighting Irish.

Coach Muffet McGraw said Achonwa tore her anterior cruciate ligament in Notre Dame's 88-69 victory over Baylor on Monday night, calling it devastating for the senior but not for the title hopes of the Irish (36-0).

"We still believe," McGraw said. "She got us to this point, now somebody else has to finish it."

Notre Dame will face the winner of Tuesday night's game between Louisville and Maryland next Sunday.

Achonwa was third on the team at 14.9 points per game, but the Irish will miss her most on the boards since led the Irish in rebounding with 7.7 per game. McGraw said the 6-3 forward, named a third-team All-American earlier in the day, was playing her best basketball of the season.

Taya Reimer will most likely start in Achonwa's place, but McGraw said the Irish aren't counting on the 6-3 freshman who is averaging 6.7 points and 4.1 rebounds to replace Achonwa by herself. McGraw has repeatedly said she believes the Irish have the best bench in the country and said everyone must step up.

"Hopefully one of them will have a big game, but hopefully all of them will have a pretty good one. That's all we need," she said.

McGraw said the Irish could use a four-guard offense more with Achonwa out and might try some other things.

She said Achonwa's leadership is what the Irish will miss most. Achonwa showed her leadership shortly after sustaining the injury with just under 5 minutes remaining against Baylor, yelling from under the basket toward the Notre Dame exhorting her teammates to protect the home court.

"She's not feeling sorry for herself. She knows this is about the team," McGraw said. "I think the team looked at her and instead of feeling sorry for her instead got a little more determined that we're going to win this one for her."

After all, Notre Dame is the birthplace for the `Win one for the Gipper' speech.

"There absolutely is a win-one-for-Ace," McGraw said. "I think it's so important to really rally around this."

Achonwa will have surgery on the knee at a later date. She started 33 games this season, posting career-high averages in points, field goal percentage (.611), assists (2.8 per game) and blocked shots (1.2 per game). She ranks fourth on Notre Dame's all-time list of rebounders with 970.

Marquette hires Duke's 'Wojo' as next hoop coach

Marquette found its replacement for Buzz Williams in Mike Krzyzewski's coaching tree.

The Golden Eagles introduced Duke assistant Steve Wojciechowski as their next men's basketball coach Tuesday, with Krzyzewski's long-time right-hand man saying he wants to follow his mentor's lead while bringing his new program to similar heights.

Krzyzewski "allowed me to understand just how fun and incredible the game of basketball is, but when used the right way, how it can change your life," Wojciechowski said during his introductory news conference in Milwaukee. "I hope to do that here at Marquette."

University President-Elect Michael Lovell called Wojciechowski, 37, "a winner on the court" who "has all the values that we expect at Marquette University."

He replaces Williams, who left for Virginia Tech last month after leading Marquette to a 139-69 record and five NCAA tournament appearances in six seasons. The Golden Eagles missed the tournament this year.

Wojciechowski is the second Krzyzewski assistant in two years to land a head coaching job at a program in a major conference. Chris Collins just finished his first season at Northwestern.

"I wasn't going to leave (Duke) for just any job," Wojciechowski said. "I was only going to leave for a job that I thought is the perfect job for me, and I feel like Marquette is that place."

Interim Marquette athletic director Bill Cords said Wojciechowski was the only finalist who wasn't already a head coach, but said he came highly recommended by Krzyzewski and by Jerry Colangelo, the former owner of the Phoenix Suns and director of USA Basketball. Wojciechowski assisted Krzyzewski with the U.S. national team from 2006-12.

Wojciechowski described the 24 hours leading up to his introduction as "a whirlwind" but called it "the most proud day in my basketball life."

The Golden Eagles, picked to win the reconfigured Big East this season, finished sixth in the 10-team league with a 17-15 record and had their eight-year run of NCAA tournament appearances snapped.

They're hoping Wojciechowski can get them back there.

He was a star guard for Krzyzewski's Duke teams from 1994-98 who was known for slapping the floor when the Blue Devils needed a big defensive stop.

"I love the game of basketball, and I think it should be played a certain way, and the No. 1 way it should be played is, hard, all the time," he said.

Wojciechowski has been on Duke's staff since 1999, was promoted to associate head coach in 2008 and has worked primarily with the post players during his 15 seasons on the staff.

Though Wojciechowski has never been a head coach at any level, Krzyzewski has long said he considers him a head coach. When the Hall of Fame coach felt dizzy and light-headed during in a loss at Wake Forest last month, Wojciechowski filled in for him at his postgame news conference.

"Steve gave his heart and soul to me, our program, our community and Duke for 20 years," Krzyzewski said. "He was a vital part of the successes we have had. He made me better every day and I know that he will make Marquette and the Milwaukee community better every day. He is a very special coach and person."

Wojciechowski was selected as the national defensive player of the year in 1998 by the National Association of Basketball Coaches. During the final three years of his playing career at Duke, the Blue Devils were 74-26.

It's been a big past few weeks for those in Krzyzewski's coaching tree: Stanford's Johnny Dawkins reached the NCAA tournament for the first time as a head coach - and took the Cardinal to the round of 16 - while Tommy Amaker's Harvard team upset Cincinnati in its tournament opener.

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Follow Joedy McCreary on Twitter at http://twitter.com/joedyap

Woods has back surgery, will miss the Masters

Tiger Woods chose surgery to heal his ailing back over a quest for another green jacket, announcing Tuesday that he will miss the Masters for the first time in his career.

Woods said on his website that he had surgery Monday in Utah for a pinched nerve that had been hurting him for several months, knowing the surgery would keep him from Augusta National next week for the first time since he was a senior in high school.

The No. 1 player in the world is a four-time Masters champion.

"After attempting to get ready for the Masters, and failing to make the necessary progress, I decided in consultation with my doctors to have this procedure done, Woods said. "I'd like to express my disappointment to the Augusta National membership, staff, volunteers and patrons that I will not be at the Masters.

"It's a week that's very special to me," he said. "It also looks like I'll be forced to miss several upcoming tournaments to focus on my rehabilitation and getting healthy."

The Masters gets the highest television ratings of any golf tournament, and Woods commands most of the attention, even though he last won a green jacket in 2005. He won his first Masters in 1997 when he set 20 records, from youngest Masters champion at 21 to his 12-shot margin of victory.

"I know Tiger has been working very hard to return to form, and as I have said many times, Tiger has a lot of years of good golf ahead of him," Jack Nicklaus said. "I hate to see him robbed of some of that time by injury. But we all know he is doing what is in the best interest of his health and future. I wish him well on a speedy recovery."

Nicklaus played 154 straight majors for which he was eligible until he missed the 1998 British Open because of an ailing left hip that he had replaced a year later. Nicklaus rarely had injury problems in compiling 18 professional majors, the record that Woods wants. Woods has been stuck on 14 majors for six years.

Woods has had four surgeries on his left knee, and now his biggest concern is his back.

He has been coping with back issues since last summer: a twinge in the final round of the PGA Championship and spasms in the final round of The Barclays that caused him to fall to his knees. Then, they returned with alarming regularity recently in Florida.

He withdrew after 13 holes in the final round of the Honda Classic with what he described as lower back pain and spasms. Woods shot the highest final round of his career at Doral a week later when he said his back flared up again in the final round. He skipped the Arnold Palmer Invitational, where he was the two-time defending champion, to rest his back and do everything possible to be at Augusta National next week.

"Tiger was gracious in keeping us updated of his condition and making us aware of his decision," Augusta National chairman Billy Payne said. "We wholeheartedly offered our best wishes for his immediate and long-term recovery."

Woods said he had a microdiscectomy for the pinched nerve, performed by neurosurgeon Charles Rich.

A microdiscectomy is a type of minimally invasive spine surgery to relieve pressure and pain caused by a herniated disc. Operating through a small incision in the lower back, surgeons remove small disc fragments that are pressing against spinal nerves.

Recovery can take several weeks and doctors typically advise against bending and twisting the back until patients are completely healed

"This is frustrating," Woods said. "But it's something my doctors advised me to do for my immediate and long-term health."

His website said repeating the motion of a golf swing can cause problems with a pinched nerve, and that the injury could have become worse if he had continued to play. Woods said he hopes to return to golf this summer, though he could not say when. It's possible he could at least start chipping and putting in three weeks.

He will have to wait until the U.S. Open - maybe longer - to resume his quest to match Nicklaus in the majors. Woods won his 14th major at the 2008 U.S. Open on a badly injured left leg that required season-ending surgery two days after his playoff win at Torrey Pines.

He has not won another major since then.

This would have been the 20th straight Masters for Woods, dating to 1995 when he tied for 41st as the U.S. Amateur champion. He missed the British Open and PGA Championship in 2008 after knee surgery, and the U.S. Open and British Open in 2011 to heal more injuries in his left leg.

But he never missed the Masters, even after the scandal in his personal life at the end of 2009. Woods had been out of golf for nearly five months dealing with a car crash into a fire hydrant, revelations of multiple extramarital affairs and 45 days in a Mississippi clinic when he returned to Augusta National under intense scrutiny. He tied for fourth.

Even though he hasn't won the Masters in nine years, he had only finished out of the top 10 one time, in 2012.

Woods has 79 career wins on the PGA Tour, three short of the record held by Sam Snead. He already was off to the worst start of his career.

"It's tough right now, but I'm absolutely optimistic about the future," Woods said. "There are a couple (of) records by two outstanding individuals and players that I hope one day to break. As I've said many times, Sam and Jack reached their milestones over an entire career. I plan to have a lot of years left in mine."

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Associated Press Medical Writer Lindsey Tanner in Chicago contributed to this report.

Chemo, radiation for ex-Bills QB Kelly next week

BUFFALO, N.Y. (AP) The doctor treating Hall of Fame quarterback Jim Kelly for cancer says Kelly will start chemotherapy and radiation next week.

The treatment plan was outlined Tuesday by Dr. Peter Costantino of Lenox Hill Hospital in New York City, where the longtime Buffalo Bills star is being treated for a sinus cancer.

Costantino says he's confident the regimen has a good chance of success. If not, he says Kelly's skull-base tumor remains operable.

Kelly underwent surgery in Buffalo last June to remove cancerous cells from his upper jaw.

The chemotherapy and radiation will target cancer cells in his maxillary sinus and adjacent tissues.

In 11 seasons with the Bills, Kelly appeared in four consecutive Super Bowls in the 1990s. He was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2002.

Obama welcomes World Series champion Red Sox

WASHINGTON (AP) President Barack Obama welcomed the World Series champion Red Sox to the White House Tuesday, praising their triumph on the field while hailing them as a symbol of their city's "grit and resilience" in the wake of last year's Boston Marathon bombing.

Not all of the ceremonial greeting was quite so serious. David Ortiz, Boston's best-known player, presented the president with a Red Sox jersey emblazoned with "Obama" and the number 44 on the back, then promptly took a cell phone picture of himself and the chief executive. "What an honor, thanks for the (hash)selfie (at)BarackObama" he quickly tweeted.

And Jonny Gomes, an outfielder, strolled the White House grounds dressed in a sports jacket that looked like an American flag, stars on one half, and stripes on the other.

Standing in front of players and team officials, Obama noted that the Red Sox have won three championships in the past decade, more than any other team.

He said sports sometimes "seems like it's trivial, it's just an entertainment. And then, every once in a while, you're reminded that sports represents something else and it has the power to bring people together like almost nothing else can."

Three people were killed and more than 260 injured nearly a year ago in a bombing at the Boston Marathon. The Red Sox staged a tribute to the victims on the field and had "Boston Strong" symbols sewn into their uniforms. "The point is, Boston and the Red Sox were one," Obama said.

"When they visited bombing victims in the hospital, when they played ball with kids getting cancer treatment, when they started a program to help wounded warriors get treatment at Mass General (Hospital), these guys were saying, `we're all on the same team.' "

Obama, a Chicago White Sox fan, wished Boston good luck this season, then added, "May the best Sox win."

MLB back with replays, metal detectors, comebacks

Jimmy Rollins began the season with a slam, Neil Walker with a walkoff homer and the Washington Nationals with a thrilling ninth-inning comeback.

After a frigid winter of blizzards for much of the U.S., baseball came storming back Monday when 26 major league teams opened their seasons and seemed to make the outdoors feel a little warmer.

Washington's Matt Williams and Detroit's Brad Ausmus won in their big league debuts as managers.

They weren't the only inaugurals.

There was an innovative replay system for umpires, and at some ballparks new metal detectors at fan entrances as teams installed the devices a year before Major League Baseball's industrywide requirement.

At U.S. Cellular Field in Chicago, there were long lines as spectators were screened by hand held or walkthrough metal detectors.

"Everybody's safety is important and if Major League Baseball and the Chicago White Sox are trying to protect their fans that are loyal to them, I'm fine with that," said Paula Green of Paris, Ill.

On the field, there were five video reviews in the day games. In the two decisions overturned by umpires in the New York control room, Ryan Braun of the Milwaukee Brewers and Emilio Bonifacio of the Chicago Cubs were called out at first base after initially being ruled safe. In the two of the three rulings confirmed, Washington's Danny Espinosa and the Cubs' Jeff Samardzija both were called out.

The other confirmed ruling was the first review to be initiated by a crew chief. Umpire Mike Winters requested a replay to see if A's catcher John Jaso had illegally blocked the plate while tagging Cleveland's Michael Brantley under baseball's new rule regarding home plate collisions.

Braun received a standing ovation at Miller Park in his return from a 65-game, season-ending suspension he accepted for violations of baseball's drug agreement and labor contract.

"Fans are fans. That's the way it's supposed to be. He's their hometown player and it was a wonderful reaction. I wish everybody well," said baseball Commissioner Bud Selig, the former Brewers owner who was on hand to watch his hometown team.

Nelson Cruz, who completed his 50-game suspension in time to return for Texas' season finale last fall, celebrated his Baltimore debut with a tiebreaking home run off Jon Lester in the seventh inning in the Orioles' 2-1 win over World Series champion Boston. Fans chanted "Cruuuuuze!" every time his name was announced.

"It was really neat, it was special," he said. "I made the right call to come and be part of this organization, be part of this town."

Rollins hit his 200th career homer in Philadelphia's 14-10 interleague win at Texas as the Phillies had 17 hits and scored their most runs in an opener since 1900. Rollins, whose wife is expecting their second child, flew to Texas on Sunday, a day after the rest of the team.

"I didn't want to come here and then have to fly to Philadelphia," Rollins said. "The baby has let me go out and play ball for a few more days."

Rollins connected off Tanner Scheppers, the first pitcher since Fernando Valenzuela of the 1981 Los Angeles Dodgers to make his first big league start on opening day.

At Pittsburgh, Walker homered off Carlos Villanueva leading off the 10th inning to give the Pirates a 1-0, 10-inning win over the perennially hapless Chicago Cubs. He becomes the first Pittsburgh player to hit a game-ending home on opening day since Bob Bailey against San Francisco's Juan Marichal in a 1-0, 10-inning victory in 1965.

"This one feels pretty special," said Walker, who last year helped the Pirates finish with a winning record for the first time since 1992. "This is a special day for this team, this organization. We've come a long way."

Washington rallied for a 9-7 win at the New York Mets. Denard Span hit a tying double with two outs in the ninth off closer Bobby Parnell, and Ian Desmond put the Nationals in front for the first time with a sacrifice fly in the 10th and Anthony Rendon followed with a three-run homer.

"I have a stomach ache right now," Williams said. "I'll probably sleep good tonight."

Detroit beat visiting Kansas City 4-3 when Alex Gonzalez finished his Tigers debut with a winning RBI single in the ninth against Greg Holland. Kansas City lost its sixth straight opener but Salvador Perez's run-scoring double in the fourth ended a 22-inning scoreless streak for the Royals in openers.

St. Louis won 1-0 at Cincinnati behind Yadier Molina's seventh-inning homer off Johnny Cueto, the Reds' first shutout loss on opening day since 1953. Bryan Price lost his managing debut with Cincinnati.

Coming off a 63-99 season, their poorest record since 1970, the Chicago White Sox beat Minnesota 5-3. Tampa Bay beat Toronto 9-2 behind ace David Price, who wasn't sure he'd remain with the Rays during a winter of trade rumors.

Blue Jays shortstop Jose Reyes left the lineup after his first at-bat because of a tight left hamstring and was put on the disabled list. Reyes injured his left ankle in Toronto's 10th game last year and was sidelined until June 26.

Jose Fernandez struck out nine and allowed one run in six innings for the Miami Marlins in a 10-1 rout of visiting Colorado. The 21-year-old became the youngest NL opening-day starter since Dwight Gooden in 1986, according to STATS.

Nyjer Morgan hit a go-ahead sacrifice fly in the ninth inning against new Athletics closer Jim Johnson and visiting Cleveland sent Oakland to its major league-record 10th straight opening loss, 2-0.

Felix Hernandez struck out 11 in the new-look Mariners' 10-3 victory at the Angels. Robinson Cano went 2 for 4 with a double and an intentional walk in the $240 million second baseman's debut for new Seattle manager Lloyd McClendon. Mike Trout hit a two-run homer in the first inning for Los Angeles.

Buster Posey hit a two-run homer off new Arizona closer Addison Reed in the ninth inning and the visiting Giants rallied from four runs down for a 9-8 victory.

The final opener is Tuesday, when the New York Yankees start captain Derek Jeter's last season at Houston.

Mariners roar past Angels 10-3 on opening day

ANAHEIM, Calif. (AP) Abraham Almonte hit a tiebreaking RBI double in the seventh inning and Felix Hernandez struck out 11 in the new-look Seattle Mariners' 10-3 victory over the Los Angeles Angels on Monday night.

Justin Smoak hit a three-run homer and Dustin Ackley had a three-run triple while the Mariners batted around in the ninth inning, roaring back from an early two-run deficit for their eighth straight victory on opening day.

Robinson Cano went 2 for 4 with a double and an intentional walk in the $240 million second baseman's debut for new Seattle manager Lloyd McClendon.

Mike Trout hit a two-run homer in the first inning and Albert Pujols had a run-scoring double for the Angels, who had won nine of 10 on opening day, including five straight.

Their evening got off to an ominous start when hitting coach Don Baylor broke his right leg while catching Vladimir Guerrero's ceremonial first pitch.

The former Rockies and Cubs manager will have surgery on his femur Tuesday. Baylor's leg bent awkwardly before he had to be helped to the dugout, leaving the Angels stunned as they took the field.

Hernandez (1-0) gave up four hits over six innings in his seventh opening day start for the Mariners, passing Randy Johnson for the club record.

He outdueled Jered Weaver (0-1), who yielded six hits and three walks in his club-record sixth start on opening day.

Mike Zunino had an RBI triple in the seventh to chase Weaver, and Almonte drove him home with a double off Angels newcomer Fernando Salas. Smoak connected in the ninth off Kevin Jepsen while the Mariners batted around.

After Cano grounded out to short in his first plate appearance, the longtime Yankees second baseman got his first Mariners hit on a 50-foot squib to third base in the fourth inning. He rapped a solid double to right in the ninth before Smoak's shot.

The Angels' top newcomers didn't impress for openers: David Freese went 0 for 4 with two strikeouts, and longtime Mariners slugger Raul Ibanez was 0 for 4 with three strikeouts.

Trout's new $144.5 million contract doesn't even begin until next season, but the brightest young talent in baseball wasted no time delivering. After Kole Calhoun's leadoff single, Trout put an emphatic drive over the left field fence against Hernandez.

Pujols' double boosted Los Angeles' lead to 3-1 in the third. The Mariners nearly tied it with a two-out rally in the sixth, but Calhoun swiftly fielded Kyle Seager's RBI double off the right field wall, and cutoff man Howie Kendrick threw out Logan Morrison at the plate.

But one inning later, Zunino put a one-out triple over Josh Hamilton's head in left, scoring Ackley.

NOTES: Morrison had three strikeouts and two walks in his Mariners debut. ... Weaver has started the last five consecutive opening days, while Hernandez has started six straight Mariners openers. ... Ibanez has spent the majority of his career in Seattle during three stints with the club. He had 29 homers and 65 RBIs for the Mariners last year.

Posey's home run caps Giant rally in 9-8 victory

PHOENIX (AP) Buster Posey hit a two-run homer off new Arizona closer Addison Reed in the ninth inning and the San Francisco Giants rallied from four runs down to beat the Diamondbacks 9-8 on Monday night.

It was the season opener for San Francisco and the first true home game for the Diamondbacks, who started the season with two losses as the home team against the Los Angeles Dodgers in Australia.

Miguel Montero, who had three hits and reached base five times, homered to lead off the Arizona ninth and make it a one-run game.

Brandon Belt had three hits, including a solo home run, and singled ahead of Posey's homer.

Arizona scored four unearned runs off starter Madison Bumgarner in the fourth and led 7-3 after six. San Francisco got four runs with two outs in the seventh, with reliever Brad Ziegler walking in the tying run.

Duchene out about 4 weeks with knee injury

ENGLEWOOD, Colo. (AP) The Colorado Avalanche will be heading into their first postseason in four years without leading scorer Matt Duchene, who injured his left knee.

Duchene damaged the medial collateral ligament when he ran into a teammate on the opening shift against San Jose over the weekend. He is expected to miss about four weeks.

The loss is a big blow for the Avalanche, who have turned things around in coach Patrick Roy's first season in charge and are in the running for home-ice advantage with eight games remaining.

"We hope for a speedy recovery to be back as soon as he can," Ryan O'Reilly said after practice Monday.

Duchene was trying to avoid a collision with teammate Jamie McGinn, but they awkwardly bumped near the Sharks blue line. Duchene fell to the ice and then gingerly skated to the bench.

"One of those freak accidents in hockey," McGinn said.

McGinn said he has called and texted Duchene, telling him to "stay positive."

Duchene posted on his Twitter account Monday that the "thought of not playing in the first round for me has been devastating." He added that he will be "doing everything in my power to be ready for Game 1 ... and if not then, shortly after!"

The 23-year-old Duchene has set career highs this season in points (70), assists (47) and shots (217). He missed three games earlier this season with an oblique injury. The team went 3-0 in his absence.

For now, Roy said the plan is to move rookie Nathan MacKinnon to center to fill in for Duchene, with O'Reilly and McGinn playing on the wings.

"We've been finding ways to win games," Roy said. "We'll continue to find ways to win."

Here's an encouraging sign: P.A. Parenteau, who sprained his knee on March 10, briefly skated on his own Monday. Roy said Parenteau could possibly be back for the regular season finale in Anaheim on April 13.

"We have depth and a lot of confidence in our players," Roy said. "Our players have a lot of confidence in themselves. It's a team concept. It's how we've been winning our games. It's not going to change."

Right after practice, Roy assembled his team at center ice, just to give them one final pep talk before taking off for a game in Columbus on Tuesday. He told them he was "proud of them" and that the team shouldn't be satisfied, especially with Colorado trailing Central Division-leading St. Louis by only seven points.

The message was well received.

"All year, guys have stepped up and done a great job," McGinn said. "We just stay positive and work hard and good things will happen."

Asked if there was any pressure stepping in for Duchene, MacKinnon responded, "No."

"I'm not going to try to replace Dutchy, because you can't," said MacKinnon, a favorite for rookie of the year. "Matt is a big-time player and we're going to have to find ways to win without him."

Roy knows all about missing an integral player for the postseason. He and the Avalanche were without Peter Forsberg during their 2001 Stanley Cup run when Forsberg had to have his spleen removed following the Western Conference semifinals against Los Angeles.

The team carried on without the Swedish star, beating the New Jersey Devils in Game 7 to win the title.

"That's the way it was in 2001 - it was about the team," Roy said. "Peter was a very important player on that team, don't get me wrong. But our culture was we had to work hard every time we were on the ice. We had to find ways to win hockey games.

"That's what this team has been doing all year. This is what we're talking about when you're talking about a team changing their culture. We're not looking for an excuse. We're looking for a solution."

UConn women top Aggies 69-54, head to Final Four

LINCOLN, Neb. (AP) Kaleena Mosqueda-Lewis continued her splendid run through the NCAA tournament with 17 points, and Connecticut advanced to the women's Final Four for the seventh straight year with a 69-54 victory against Texas A&M on Monday night.

The defending national champion Huskies (38-0) won their 44th straight game and will be going for their record ninth national championship in Nashville. Their semifinal opponent Sunday will be either Stanford or North Carolina.

Stefanie Dolson, who made her 150th career start to tie the NCAA record, had 14 points and 10 rebounds and blocked a career-high eight shots. Bria Hartley had 14 points, Breanna Stewart added 13 and Moriah Jefferson 11.

Courtney Walker led Texas A&M (27-9) with 14 points. Courtney Williams had 13 and Jordan Jones 12.

After the Aggies got within three points early in the second half, UConn outscored the Aggies 27-12 to build its lead to 18 points.

Stanford coach questions unionization movement

STANFORD, Calif. (AP) Stanford coach David Shaw is questioning what's behind the union movement by Northwestern football players, saying everything they are asking for is already being provided by most universities.

Shaw said following Stanford's spring practice Monday night that he's "curious what's really driving" the union. He said his players are given an athletic scholarship worth about $60,000 annually and have never had to pay for a health care service.

"I'm as confused as anybody as to the importance of this," Shaw said. "I'm curious what's really driving it. I've seen everything, and everything that's been asked for, my understanding is it's been provided. I think Northwestern does a phenomenal job providing for their kids, and it's weird to try to unionize but still compliment Northwestern and compliment their coaching staff on being taken care of. Those things don't seem to go hand in hand."

Shaw's comments came after last week's ruling by a regional director of the National Labor Relations Board that Northwestern's football team can be considered employees and have the right to form a union. The school is appealing.

Shaw also fired back at outgoing Northwestern quarterback Kain Colter's comments that Stanford rescinded a scholarship because of an injury. Shaw, who personally recruited Colter out of his Colorado high school, said he couldn't elaborate on Colter's situation but he's never rescinded a scholarship from a player because of an injury - and never will.

"I went to his high school. I talked to his high school coach. I sat there and talked to him for an hour-and-a-half and watched all the kids' film," Shaw said. "There was no way we dropped a scholarship offer because he got hurt."

The College Athletes Players Association, or CAPA, has said its specific goals include guaranteeing coverage of sports-related medical expenses for current and former players, reducing head injuries and potentially letting players pursue commercial sponsorships.

Critics have argued that giving college athletes employee status and allowing them to unionize could hurt college sports in numerous ways, including raising the prospect of strikes by disgruntled players or lockouts by athletic departments.

For now, the push is to unionize athletes at private schools, such as Northwestern and Stanford, because the federal labor agency does not have jurisdiction over public universities.

Shaw said he's had some "preliminary conversations" with his players regarding the Northwestern ruling but will wait to see how things develop before discussing the matter further with them. He also said neither he nor his players have been approached by the union or talked about forming a football players' union at Stanford.

"If this is a cost of attendance thing, we'll do whatever the NCAA allows us to do," Shaw said. "But I'll tell you this: I know we're preparing these young men for more than just football. We're not using them for anything. We're giving them an unbelievable education, unbelievable contacts. Hopefully they have a phenomenal experience here, athletically and academically and socially. And hopefully they go on to influence this great nation. To insinuate that there's anything we're doing to harm these young men, I think it's not correct."

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Antonio Gonzalez can be reached at: www.twitter.com/agonzalezAP

Reyes hurt in Blue Jays' loss; headed to DL

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) Jose Reyes was put on the disabled list after aggravating a hamstring injury, R.A. Dickey struggled and the Toronto Blue Jays ended up with a one-sided loss to Tampa Bay.

David Price took a shutout into the eighth inning and Matt Joyce drove in three runs Monday to help the Rays begin the season with a 9-2 victory over Blue Jays.

Reyes was lifted after his first at-bat because of a tight left hamstring, an injury that first bothered him late in spring training. The star shortstop led off the game and was robbed of a hit on a diving catch by Rays center fielder Desmond Jennings.

"I tried to run a little bit faster between home plate and first base, and I kind of feel my hammy there," Reyes said. "So I have to slowdown and get out of the game because I don't want to get any worse."

Reyes missed several games during the final week of spring training and wasn't at 100 percent for exhibition games Friday and Saturday in Montreal.

"Irritated the same spot, so that's a concern," Toronto manager John Gibbons said.

Several hours later the Blue Jays put him on the DL.

Reyes said the hamstring was "good enough" to play in Montreal and felt better Monday.

"When I tried for a little speed, something not right," Reyes said.

Reyes missed 66 games last season after going on the DL April 13 with a sprained left ankle - after just 10 into his first season with the Blue Jays.

He was replaced in the field by Ryan Goins. The Blue Jays purchased the contract of infielder Jonathan Diaz from Triple-A Buffalo to take Reyes' roster spot.

Price (1-0) allowed two runs and six hits over 7 1-3 innings to beat R.A. Dickey in a matchup of 2012 Cy Young Award winners. The hard-throwing lefty walked one and struck out six before a crowd of 31,042 at Tropicana Field - the Rays' ninth consecutive sellout for a home opener.

"It's really disappointing and frustrating," Dickey said. "You feel like you let a lot of people down. Against David Price, one of the best pitchers in baseball, if you don't match him inning per inning, it's going to be tough to win the game. I put us in a hole early. Walked some guys early, gave up some 0-2 hits with runners in scoring position, and that was the game."

Dickey dropped to 14-13 with a 4.21 ERA last season after winning 20 games and NL Cy Young honors with the Mets two years ago. The 39-year-old knuckleballer is off to another shaky start after allowing six runs, five hits and walking six over five innings against essentially the same Tampa Bay lineup he went 3-1 against in 2013.

Joyce had a sacrifice fly and two-run double off Dickey (0-1), who yielded six two-out runs in five innings. Evan Longoria got the Rays going with a first-inning RBI single and Wil Myers drove in two more when he singled with the bases loaded in the second.

Price limited the Blue Jays to four singles and had only allowed two runners past second base before Maicer Izturis opened the eighth with his second hit of the day. Pinch-hitter Erik Kratz followed with a first-pitch, two-run homer over the center field wall.

The 28-year-old lefty became the Rays' first 20-game winner and edged Justin Verlander in AL Cy Young balloting two years ago. He got off to a slow start in 2013, but finished strong after spending more than a month on the disabled list, leading the majors in innings, complete games and fewest walks per nine innings after July 2.

NOTES: The Rays haven't lost a home series to the Blue Jays since April 2007. ... Blue Jays closer Casey Janssen, who's on the 15-day disabled list due to a strain in his left abdominal area and lower back, doesn't feel the injury will be a long-term problem. ... The four-game series continues Tuesday night with RHP Alex Cobb getting the start for Tampa Bay and the Blue Jays countering with RHP Drew Hutchison.

Notre Dame beats Baylor 88-69 to get to Final Four

SOUTH BEND, Ind. -- Jewell Loyd scored 30 points and unbeaten Notre Dame advance to the Final Four for a fourth straight season with an 88-69 win over Baylor on Monday night.

Natalie Achonwa added 19 points and 15 rebounds for the top-seeded Irish (36-0), who will face either Louisville or Maryland in the national semifinals on Sunday night in Nashville.

Notre Dame became the sixth school to reach the Final Four in four straight seasons, joining UConn, LSU, Stanford, Louisiana Tech and Tennessee.

The loss ended the brilliant career of Baylor guard Odyssey Sims, who finished this season with 1,054 points -eight short of Jackie Stiles' NCAA record for a single season. Sims scored 33 points for Baylor (32-5), but had little help on offense.

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