National Sports Headlines from NBC Sports

UNC's McAdoo to enter NBA draft as a junior

North Carolina junior James Michael McAdoo felt he had put off going to the NBA long enough.

The 6-foot-9 forward had flirted with entering the draft after each of his first two seasons before announcing Thursday that he would make the jump this time around.

In a statement from the school, McAdoo said he planned to complete coursework to earn his history degree.

"I just feel I am ready to play at the next level and excited about that challenge," McAdoo said. "I had chances to go after my freshman and sophomore years but was more excited about coming back to school then. Right now I am excited about fulfilling my dream to play in the NBA and do what I have to do to take that next step."

The Norfolk, Va., native averaged 14.2 points and 6.8 rebounds for the Tar Heels, helping them go on a 12-game winning streak in Atlantic Coast Conference play before falling to Iowa State in the third round of the NCAA tournament. He was a second-team all-ACC pick as a sophomore and junior.

"I am extremely happy for James Michael, but at the same time I am sad for me because I won't get a chance to coach that youngster again," coach Roy Williams said in a statement. "He's a wonderful kid who has been a very dependable player and one of the top players in the ACC the past two seasons. ... We support him 100 percent in his decision, wish him nothing but the best in his professional career and understand that it is truly important to him and his family that he complete his degree work."

McAdoo - a relative of program great Bob McAdoo - improved gradually each year yet never became a dominant player. He was at his best attacking defenders off the dribble or hitting a face-up jumper, yet he struggled at the foul line (55 percent over the last two seasons) and often seemed more content blending in with his teammates than seizing a lead role.

He started his career behind eventual NBA first-round picks Harrison Barnes, John Henson and Tyler Zeller on a preseason No. 1 team. When Henson suffered a wrist injury during the ACC tournament, McAdoo thrived in a bigger role for a team that reached a regional final.

After passing on the draft, McAdoo averaged 14.4 points and 7.3 rebounds while shooting 45 percent as a sophomore, then returned to mirror those numbers in his final season.

The Tar Heels (24-10) lose McAdoo and fifth-year senior Leslie McDonald as starters, but return all-ACC performer Marcus Paige and add three McDonald's All-Americans in point guard Joel Berry, and wings Justin Jackson and Theo Pinson - who was named an Associated Press all-state pick for North Carolina on Wednesday.

Nats' Zimmermann scratched for flu-like symptoms

NEW YORK (AP) Washington Nationals pitcher Jordan Zimmermann was scratched from his scheduled start against the New York Mets on Thursday because of flu-like symptoms.

Tanner Roark took over as the starting pitcher for the finale of the opening three-game series. He had been slated to start Washington's home opener Friday against the Atlanta Braves.

Nationals manager Matt Williams said Zimmermann was being sent back to Washington ahead of the team and being given fluids. He said the pitcher, who went 19-9 with a 3.25 ERA last year, was feeling fine Wednesday but took ill after the game.

"He's running a fever. He was up all night throwing up," Williams said. "Evidently he's feeling pretty under the weather."

Roark, a 27-year-old right-hander, was 7-1 with a 1.51 ERA in five starts and nine relief appearances as a rookie last year, striking out 40 and walking 11 in 53 2-3 innings. He was informed of the change in plans during a phone call Thursday morning from pitching coach Steve McCatty.

Williams hopes Taylor Jordan is ready to pitch Friday on short rest. While his last exhibition appearance was March 24, he threw a simulated outing this week and would be starting on short rest.

Washington's second option would be a series of relievers.

"If he's not ready to go tomorrow, then that's going to have to be our option," Williams said.

NOTES: RHP Doug Fister, sidelined by a strained muscle on the right side of his upper back, was scheduled to play catch. Fister can be activated April 7.

Timberwolves F Dante Cunningham arrested

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) Minnesota Timberwolves forward Dante Cunningham has been arrested on allegations of domestic assault.

Police say Cunningham was booked into Hennepin County Jail on Thursday morning. Charges have not been filed, but Cunningham is being held without bail. Police say the woman making the allegations did not require medical treatment.

The Timberwolves say they are in the process of gathering more information. They say the "organization takes the matter very seriously and does not condone the type of behavior that is associated with this situation."

The team was scheduled to leave for Miami on Thursday afternoon. The Wolves say Cunning will not be traveling with them.

The 26-year-old Cunningham is averaging 6.0 points and 4.0 rebounds off the bench for the Wolves this season.

Jets' Evander Kane sued over alleged assault

VANCOUVER, British Columbia (AP) Winnipeg Jets forward Evander Kane is being sued in British Columbia over an alleged assault in Vancouver last summer.

Vancouver resident Lev Makievsky says he was downtown and returning home from work Aug. 10, 2013, when he was assaulted by Kane. The player is from Vancouver.

Makievsky says he sustained a concussion and has "permanent physical disability." He's seeking unspecified damages.

A statement of claim was filed on Makievsky's behalf last week. There is no statement of defense.

The Jets had no comment.

PSG beats Chelsea 3-1; Madrid tops Dortmund 3-0

PARIS -- With first-leg victories, Paris Saint-Germain and Real Madrid are in good position to reach the Champions League semifinals.

PSG took advantage of Chelsea's sloppy defending in a 3-1 win Wednesday night as substitute Javier Pastore scored a brilliant late goal on a solo run. Madrid won 3-0 at home against Borussia Dortmund as Cristiano Ronaldo got his record-tying 14th goal of this season's competition.

Ezequiel Lavezzi put the hosts ahead in the fourth minute following a poor headed clearance by Chelsea captain John Terry. Eden Hazard's penalty kick tied the score in the 27th after Thiago Silva pulled down Oscar, but PSG went back in front in the 61st when Lavezzi's free kick from a flank ricocheted off David Luiz's shin and into the net.

"When the games are tight and when you make the defensive mistakes, you are in trouble," Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho he said. "We couldn't transform these half-chances into goals. and on top of that we made defensive mistakes, the kind of individual defensive mistakes, and we paid the price."

Pastore scored in injury time, gathering the ball on a wing, cutting inside, maneuvering through the penalty area and beating goalkeeper Petr Cech with a low shot.

"It's not a goal, it's a joke," said Mourinho, who also criticized his forwards. "It's difficult for us to score goals. I'm not happy with my strikers' performances and I have to try things."

PSG has not reached the semifinals since 1995. Paris star forward Zlatan Ibrahimovic limped off in the 68th with what appeared to be a hamstring injury.

"He wanted to carry on but it wasn't sensible," PSG coach Laurent Blanc said. "He will probably be out for a while."

Chelsea and PSG fans fought in a city center street about two hours before kickoff. The conflict involved around 100 people from each side, indicating that it was most likely prearranged, PSG security director Jean-Philippe d'Halliville told The Associated Press.

In Madrid, Ronaldo scored his 45th goal overall this season in the 57th minute, then left in the 80th with what appeared to be a leg injury. Playing in his 100th Champions League game, Ronaldo scored when he took a pass from Luka Modric and rounded goalkeeper Roman Weidenfeller. Ronaldo matched the Champion Clubs' Cup/Champions League mark shared by AC Milan's Jose Altafini (1962-63) and Barcelona's Lionel Messi (2011-12).

"Ronaldo has a problem with his knee, but at this moment I'm not worried about it," Madrid coach Carlo Ancelotti said.

Seeking its fourth straight semifinal appearance and record 10th title in Europe's top club competition, Real built its lead on goals by Gareth Bale in the third minute and Isco in the 27th.

Dortmund was missing suspended forward Robert Lewandowski and five injured regulars. It fielded just four of the players from last year's 4-1 win over Real in the first leg of the semifinals.

"The goals we gave up tonight were not because of this," Dortmund coach Juergen Klopp said. "It was too easy. ... We made some mistakes and we were punished."

The second legs of the home-and-home, total-goals series are next Tuesday. In matches played earlier this week, Barcelona was held to a 1-1 tie by visiting Atletico Madrid, and defending champion Bayern Munich tied 1-1 at Manchester United.

Rangers ace Darvish set for season debut Sunday

ARLINGTON, Texas (AP) Yu Darvish and the Texas Rangers only have to wait a few more days before the ace will be back on the mound.

Darvish is scheduled to make his season debut Sunday at Tampa Bay after getting through an extended bullpen session without any issues.

"He's ready to go," manager Ron Washington said Wednesday, when Darvish reported feeling good a day after throwing 86 pitches.

Washington said Darvish is as strong as he was before the neck stiffness that kept the pitcher from throwing for two weeks. Darvish was placed on the disabled list to start the season, though the move was retroactive to March 21, making the right-hander eligible to be activated this weekend.

"Once his neck wasn't bothering him anymore, we saw the same stuff we saw in Arizona," Washington said. "He didn't back up any."

Tanner Scheppers, who started the opener and was scheduled for the series finale against the Rays, was pushed back to Monday at Boston, where he will be followed by Martin Perez and Robbie Ross against the Red Sox. Washington said there have been no decisions made past that trio that also started the first three games of the season.

Darvish last faced hitters in a game March 16 during spring training. Their expected opening-day starter didn't throw again until last Saturday, when he threw off flat ground and followed that a day later with a 32-pitch bullpen session. After not throwing opening day, he came back with the strong 86-pitch session Tuesday.

"He's still as strong as an ox," Washington said. "He still was darting up the gnats that were flying around home plate. You know how small a gnat is. He was knocking them down with consistency."

Darvish finished second in the AL Cy Young Award voting last season, when he led the major leagues with 277 strikeouts. In his season debut last year, in the second game of the season, Darvish came within one out of a perfect game at Houston.

Darvish could have been activated as early as Saturday, when right-hander Nick Martinez is scheduled to make his major league debut. Martinez has never pitched above the Double-A level and isn't even on the Rangers' 25-man roster yet.

Clowney believes he should be NFL's top pick

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) Jadeveon Clowney believes he's the NFL's No. 1 draft pick and says he took a big step toward that goal during South Carolina's pro day workouts Wednesday.

The 6-foot-5, 266-pound defensive end did position drills in front of dozens of NFL personnel, including Houston head coach Bill O'Brien and Jacksonville head coach Gus Bradley. And Clowney thinks he elevated his already elite status during the 40 minutes or so of running through cones, jumping over hurdles and catching tennis balls in workouts he passed on at the NFL combine in February.

"Yes, I do feel like I should be the first pick," Clowney said after the session.

Clowney did not lift weights or run the 40-yard dash, standing on his combine showings when he did 21 reps at 225 pounds and clocked a 4.53-second time.

He also felt he eased anyone's concerns about his work ethic. He was considered by many the No. 1 pick after his sophomore season in 2012, when he had 13 sacks and closed it with his helmet-jarring hit on Michigan's Vincent Smith in the Outback Bowl.

The footage of the hit was seemingly shown daily on highlight shows and Clowney immediately became a Heisman Trophy favorite, analysts projecting record-setting sack numbers.

But Clowney couldn't live up to the expectations as injuries and opponent's schemed him out of plays. He finished with a disappointing three sacks.

A midseason tiff with coach Steve Spurrier - Clowney pulled himself out of the Kentucky game with a rib muscle strain without following proper protocol - intensified questions about Clowney's work habits and going hard every play.

"I think my work ethic is pretty good. I think I proved that today, but I've still got a lot of proving to do," he said.

There were 30 of 32 NFL teams represented with Tennessee and Cleveland opting to pass on South Carolina's pro day.

Clowney spent Tuesday night at dinner with the Texans, including O'Brien, defensive coordinator Romeo Crennel and general manager Rick Smith. Clowney thought the visit went well and he answered their questions about what he'd bring to the Texans if they took him with the top selection in May's draft.

Houston's leaders liked what they saw of Clowney on the field.

"I thought he had a good day. He worked hard and did a bunch of different drills, which was good to see," said O'Brien, the Texans' first-year coach.

Smith was happy to see Clowney move easily in space should the Texans draft him and use him at outside linebacker spot. Clowney's got a quick first step that lets him fly past offensive lineman, but he's also got sustained speed that allows him to chase down opponents other defensive lineman can't.

"He could absolutely play outside linebacker for us," Smith said.

Clowney wasn't the only former Gamecock player working out. Leading receiver Bruce Ellington, offensive lineman Ronald Patrick and quarterback Connor Shaw - all projected to go in the draft - also worked out for NFL scouts and leaders.

But the show, as it's been since he packed a high-school auditorium on Valentine's Day 2011 for his college selection, was the easygoing, hard-charging Clowney.

Several hundred fans that turned out cheered his every move and gave him a loud farewell when the defensive linemen wrapped up their portion of drills.

"I just wish I had pads on and could hit somebody," Clowney said with a smile.

Clowney has individual workouts scheduled with the St. Louis Rams and Atlanta Falcons. Houston's Smith says Clowney will also visit the Texans complex before next month's draft.

While O'Brien said his team's draft plans were still wide open - the Texans traded starting quarterback Matt Schaub this offseason - Clowney hopes he's made himself a bit harder to pass up.

Clowney thought a defensive line that included himself and All-Pro end J.J. Watt would be unstoppable.

"I'd be great, a great fit for them," Clowney said.

Clowney acknowledged it was a point of pride for him that he arrived at South Carolina as the No. 1 high school prospect and leaves as the NFL's top choice.

"I'm just going to keep on pushing," he said, "all the way to the draft."

Pennsylvania high court won't hear Sandusky appeal

HARRISBURG, Pa. -- The state's highest court on Wednesday said it would not review Jerry Sandusky's child molestation conviction, but other legal avenues remain open to the former Penn State assistant football coach.

Sandusky had asked the Pennsylvania Supreme Court to take up his 45-count conviction, arguing his lawyers were rushed too quickly to trial in 2012 and that prosecutors improperly made reference to his decision not to testify.

He also said the trial judge should have issued a jury instruction about how long it took his victims to report the abuse and that jurors should not have been told to weigh evidence of his good character against all other evidence.

Sandusky defense attorney Norris Gelman said he was disappointed by the Supreme Court's decision, which was issued in the form of a one-sentence order.

Sandusky has the right to file a new appeal.

"I'm sure he will," Gelman said.

Attorney General Kathleen Kane, whose office prosecuted Sandusky, issued a statement saying she was pleased with the decision.

"Protecting Pennsylvania's children is one of my top priorities and I remain committed to seeking justice for all victims of sexual abuse," Kane said.

The prosecutor's office had said that Sandusky did not provide sufficient basis for the Supreme Court to take up the matter and that decisions made by the trial judge did not violate his rights.

Michael Boni, a lawyer who represents Aaron Fisher and other Sandusky victims, said the Supreme Court made the right call.

"Hopefully this will, once and for all, put to bed any lingering hopes that Jerry will have his sentence reversed, his convictions reversed," Boni said. "It's a happy day for the victims."

Sandusky, 70, is serving a 30- to 60-year prison sentence for sexual abuse of 10 boys.

Gelman said Sandusky can file a new appeal under the state's Post Conviction Relief Act. That appeal, he said, could address any newly discovered evidence as well as any claims that Sandusky's lawyers were not effective.

Sandusky also could eventually take his case to federal court.

Eight of his victims testified at trial, describing a range of abuse from grooming and fondling to oral and anal sex, including attacks in the basement of Sandusky's home outside State College. Another witness, a graduate assistant for the team who had been a quarterback for the Nittany Lions, testified he saw Sandusky having sexual contact with a boy inside a team shower late on a Friday night.

Sandusky did not testify on his own behalf but has maintained his innocence. His lawyer has said the victims' testimony was motivated by a desire to cash in. Penn State announced last year it was paying $59.7 million to 26 people who had raised claims of abuse at Sandusky's hands.

His defense lawyers repeatedly sought delays before trial, saying they were swamped by an enormous amount of material from prosecutors and needed more time to examine the background of his accusers.

During a post-sentencing hearing, however, defense attorney Joe Amendola acknowledged that he had not discovered anything afterward that would have changed his trial strategy.

Sandusky's 2011 arrest led to the firing of Hall of Fame football coach Joe Paterno and significant penalties levied against the school by the NCAA. Paterno was stripped of 111 of his 409 career wins while the school was fined $60 million, banned from bowl games for four years and faced steep scholarship cuts.

Three other high-ranking school officials, including the then-president, face charges they covered up complaints about Sandusky. Their case has not yet gone to trial.

Seattle investor group remains focused on NBA

SEATTLE (AP) The investment group trying to bring men's professional basketball back to Seattle is remaining focused on the NBA, even if landing a hockey franchise could happen sooner.

"No one in our ownership group is interested in being a majority owner in an NHL franchise. That's been the case since the start," said Chris Hansen, who led the unsuccessful effort last year to purchase the Sacramento Kings and move them to Seattle. "I've certainly queried our ownership group about this. I think if someone really wanted to it would be easier than bringing in an outside party.

"But the most important thing is the passion is just not there for the NHL among our ownership group that is there for basketball. Getting involved in hockey solely because basketball hasn't worked out right now, when it's not something your heart is in, would be a disservice to the fans here."

Even as rumors continue to circulate about the NHL having interest in Seattle as a market sooner rather than later, Hansen said his job would be to find someone willing to partner with his group and their proposed arena in Seattle. The arena has been approved by both the Seattle City Council and King County Council pending environmental reviews.

Hansen said the focus right now is getting those environmental reviews completed - possibly by the end of the summer - so that if an NBA franchise becomes available via sale or expansion, Seattle can be at the front of the line ready to go. He has no interest in re-writing the memorandum of understanding reached between all parties so that an NHL franchise could possibly be a primary tenant in a new arena.

Hansen has kept a relatively low profile since last spring, when his group's attempts to buy the Kings from the Maloof family and move the team were blocked by the NBA Board of Governors. NBA owners rejected Hansen's record $625 million bid and eventually approved the sale to a group of investors led by technology executive Vivek Ranadive for $535 million with plans to keep the franchise in Sacramento.

Hansen said there are far fewer conversations with the NBA now than there were at this time a year ago, though he remains confident the NBA will eventually return to Seattle. His investment group has not changed, including former Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer, and neither has his original timeline of trying to land a team within five years of when the process began.

"By the end of that, the NBA will have its new TV contract. They'll have a few years of the revenue sharing and collective bargaining agreements being in place to understand the profitability of some of the teams that might have been a concern and there are a few franchises that are up for sale and that will probably have been worked out one way or another," Hansen said. "I think they'll be in a better position at some time within the next three years on expansion or possibly something else will come our way."

Blackhawks: Toews out until playoffs

CHICAGO (AP) Blackhawks captain Jonathan Toews will miss the rest of the regular season with an upper-body injury.

The team said Wednesday that coach Joel Quenneville expects Toews to be "100 percent" for the playoffs.

Toews was injured after a hit by Penguins defenseman Brooks Orpik on Sunday night. Toews got up slowly and was seen holding his left arm on the bench before heading to the locker room.

The Blackhawks, who have clinched a playoff berth, are already without star forward Patrick Kane, who is out for the rest of the regular season with a lower-body injury. Toews has 28 goals and 68 points this season.

Quenneville said Andrew Shaw will get some of Toews' "quality ice time," but the team has also recalled forward Joakim Nordstrom from Rockford.

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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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.

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