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Photo by Sam Greenwood/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- Arnold Palmer, one of the greatest and most popular players in the history of golf, has died, according to the U.S. Golf Association. He was 87.

Palmer died Sunday afternoon at UPMC Hospital in Pittsburgh of complications from heart problems, according to a statement from IMG. His agent, Alastair Johnson, said Palmer was admitted to the hospital Thursday for some cardiovascular work and weakened over the last few days.

Palmer, who celebrated his 87th birthday two weeks ago, was widely regarded as one of the best professional golfers of all time. He was also one of the most charismatic figures in all of sports, drawing loyal fans known as "Arnie's Army," who would follow him at tournaments.

He was nicknamed "The King" and had won the Masters four times and the British Open twice.

Jack Nicklaus, Palmer's great rival, remembered him as a "great friend" and "one of the incredible people in the game of golf and all of sports."

Palmer's 50th and last appearance at the Masters came in 2004. He received the Presidential Medal of Freedom from President George W. Bush that same year. Palmer retired from professional golf two years later.

He stayed connected to golf by owning a golf club in Florida and consulting for the Golf Channel.

Outside of golf, Palmer was an avid pilot and his name is largely associated with his eponymous drink, which is a combination of iced tea and lemonade.

Palmer married his first wife, Winifred, in 1954. She died of cancer in 1999, according to Palmer’s official website. He is survived by his second wife, known as Kit, whom he married in 2005, his two daughters, six grandchildren and nine great-grandchildren.

News of his death sparked immediate condolences from another notable golfer: Tiger Woods, whose last tweet prior to Sunday night was a message wishing Palmer a happy birthday earlier this month.

"Thanks Arnold for your friendship, counsel and a lot of laughs. Your philanthropy and humility are part of your legend," Woods wrote. "It’s hard to imagine golf without you or anyone more important to the game than the King."

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We are deeply saddened by the death of Arnold Palmer, golf's greatest ambassador, at age 87. pic.twitter.com/iQmGtseNN1

— USGA (@USGA) September 26, 2016

 

 

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Adam Hunger/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- Major League Baseball held a league-wide moment of silence before games Sunday, and individual players held personalized tributes in honor of Miami Marlins pitcher Jose Fernandez, who was among the league's most gifted and accomplished young stars.

Throughout games hosted in Toronto, Tampa Bay, Cleveland, Detroit and New York, among other cities, players and fans bowed their heads in remembrance of Fernandez, who was one of three men killed in a boating accident that occurred near Miami at around 3:15 a.m., authorities said.

The Miami Dolphins of the NFL also held a moment of silence for Fernandez, who starred for their neighboring team.

Individually, players like Yasiel Puig of the Los Angeles Dodgers and Yoenis Cespedes of the New York Mets taped #16 jerseys to the inside of their teams' respective dugouts in honor of Fernandez. Puig and Cespedes, like Fernandez, fled Cuba to play baseball in the U.S.

Hall of Fame pitcher Pedro Martinez, who is now a baseball commentator for TBS, called Fernandez "a better talent than I was," helping to frame for casual fans just how special of a talent Fernandez was, and what kind of future he could have had.

Advanced metrics suggest that Fernandez was not only great, or great for his age at just 24 years old, but arguably a generational pitching talent.

Since being called up by the Marlins as a 19-year-old player in 2013, only three-time Cy Young Award winner Clayton Kershaw (2.00) has a lower Fielding Independent Pitching ratio (FIP) than Fernandez (2.43) during that time, a statistic created to determine a pitcher's earned-run average that removes an emphasis on luck, according to Fangraphs.com, a website focused around baseball analytics.

His ratio of strikeouts per nine innings over that stretch of time (11.25) is second only to Japanese-born powerhouse Yu Darvish of the Texas Rangers (11.62), according to Fangraphs.

Kershaw and Darvish were both several years older than Fernandez during his first four seasons, and 2016 demonstrated that the 24-year-old phenom was in the process of taking his game to an entirely different level.

His 2016 FIP (2.29) was the lowest in all of baseball before his untimely death, and his ratio of strikeouts per nine innings this season (12.49) dominated all other pitchers by an impressive margin.

In terms of wins above replacement (WAR), a statistic created to summarize a player's total contributions to their team, Fernandez's 6.2 ranked the highest of any pitcher in baseball this season, according to Fangraphs.

As a result of these achievements, many commentators speculated that Fernandez has a strong chance to win a posthumous Cy Young Award this season, an award that would acknowledge him as the best pitcher in the National League for this season.

Fernandez's last game, a home start on Sept. 20 against the first-place Washington Nationals, was an absolute gem, and indicative of the kind of talent he possessed as a player.

Fernandez went eight innings for his 16th win of the season, striking out 12 and walking none. He allowed only three hits, two of which were singles.

Teammate Martin Prado, while speaking on behalf of the team during a press conference on Sunday, said that Fernandez considered it to be among his best performances as a player.

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Grant Halverson/Getty Images(CHARLOTTE, N.C.) -- In a city rocked by recent protests, star NFL player Cam Newton worked out on the field prior to kickoff at a Panthers home game in Charlotte, North Carolina wearing a black shirt bearing a Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. quote: “Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.”

The pregame attire of Newton, one of the league's best-known black players, was an apparent acknowledgment of the concerns of demonstrators who have held daily protests since the police shooting death of an African-American man, Keith Lamont Scott, early last week.

The Carolina Panthers' game against the Minnesota Vikings at Bank of America Stadium had been designated an "extraordinary event" by the city, a designation that enabled Charlotte under a city ordinance to put in place certain restrictions, according to a Charlotte police press release.

The press release said "a variety of intelligence sources indicate that protests and acts of disruption will continue in Center City, Charlotte. Considering there will be large open crowds with public access, there is potential that harm could take place if a so motivated individual or group had the desire to do so. In order to provide a safe and secure environment, we will need to expend significant public safety resources during this event."

But early reports indicated large but peaceful demonstrations near the stadium, with the crowd surrounded and contained by police.

Newton, speaking to the press Wednesday, called the fatal shooting of Scott "embarrassing" and said that it touched on a "state of oppression in our community."

Peaceful demonstrations and violent clashes have shaken the city of Charlotte every day since Scott was killed by a black police officer on Tuesday.

The shooting took place in an apartment complex parking lot not far from the stadium, and protests moved within a few blocks of that area starting on Wednesday.

The scene grew especially tense Wednesday night when police clad in riot gear fired tear gas and rubber bullets at demonstrators. Some people in the crowds threw bottles and rocks at officers and passing cars, blocked an interstate highway, surrounded and jumped on vehicles, looted businesses and stormed the entrance of a Hyatt hotel, injuring two of its employees.

A protester was shot by another civilian, and later died.

The protests have since continued but have been largely peaceful, including on Saturday after video of Scott's shooting was released by police.

Prior to the events of the past week, Newton has recently been a target of criticism by some in the black community for comments suggesting he wanted to distance himself from racial issues.

GOP pollster Frank Luntz, who has worked as a public relations adviser with the Panthers in the past, has worked to help Newton forge a post-racial identity, according to an article in Sports Illustrated.

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Joe Skipper/Getty Images(MIAMI) -- The Miami Marlins held an emotional press conference early Sunday afternoon on news of the death of star pitcher Jose Fernandez in a boating accident.

Don Mattingly, the team's manager, wept as he spoke of the joy with which Fernandez played the game of baseball.

"I see such a little boy in him --," Mattingly said, pausing to compose himself. "The way he played. It was just joy with him, when he played. When you watch little kids play Little League, that's the joy that Jose had when he was playing."

Team president David Samson, fighting back tears, spoke of how Fernandez, who emigrated from Cuba, was a beloved figure in Miami who was intimately involved with the community.

Veteran third baseman Martin Prado spoke on behalf of the team's players, describing Fernandez as a fierce competitor on the baseball diamond.

"Just to see him go up there every time," Prado said. "He didn't care who he faced or who we were playing."

He placed an emphasis on Fernandez's battle to play American baseball, coming from Cuba. A 2013 story in Grantland described the perilous journey he took to reach American shores.

Fernandez, widely considered to be among the best pitchers in Major League Baseball, was killed when a boat that had apparently been speeding crashed into a jetty outside Miami Harbor, authorities said.

Fernandez was one of three males killed, authorities said. Two were found in the 32-foot boat and one in the water, Miami-Dade County Sheriff Lorenzo Velos said at a press conference Sunday morning. None of the three were wearing life vests, Velos said.

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Pedro Portal/Miami Herald/TNS via Getty Images(MIAMI) -- Miami Marlins' Jose Fernandez, widely considered to be among the best pitchers in Major League Baseball, was killed when a boat that had apparently been speeding crashed into a jetty outside Miami Harbor, authorities said.

Fernandez was one of three males killed, authorities said. Two were found in the 32-foot boat and one in the water, Miami-Dade County Sheriff Lorenzo Velos said at a press conference Sunday morning. None of the three were wearing life vests, Velos said.

The other victims appear to be friends of the pitcher and were not teammates, the sheriff said, adding that Fernandez was not the boat's owner and had not been driving it. He said the boat's owner has been stopped before for safety violations.

The sheriff said there was no obvious indication that alcohol or drugs were involved in the accident but that autopsies could help to determine that.

Florida Fish and Wildlife Capt. Meagan Dean said the wrecked boat was discovered early-morning Sunday on a routine search of the area.

The Marlins announced that Sunday's game against the Atlanta Braves has been canceled as a result of the sudden death of one of the team's stars.

Fernandez, just 24 years old at the time of his death, amassed several eye-popping seasons in his short career on the professional baseball diamond, winning the National League Rookie of the Year award in 2013.

He had a career earned-run average of just 2.58 over four seasons. He led baseball this season in strikeouts per nine innings with 12.49 among starting pitchers.

He was particularly dominant while playing at home in Miami's Marlins Park, becoming the first pitcher in the modern era to win his first 17 career home decisions. He eventually went on to go 24-1 in his first 25 home decisions.

Born in Santa Clara, Cuba, Fernandez defected to America in 2008 and became one of the most prominent faces among a wave of Cuban stars breaking into professional baseball at that time.

Fernandez posted a photo on Instagram of his girlfriend, Carla Mendoza, appearing to be pregnant last week. It is unclear at this time whether she was with him in the boat when he was killed.

The Miami Marlins released a statement about Fernandez's death saying that they are "devastated by the tragic loss of Jose Fernandez."

"Our thoughts and prayers are with his family at this very difficult time,” the statement read.

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iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- Here are the latest scores and winners:

INTERLEAGUE
Baltimore 6, Arizona 1

AMERICAN LEAGUE
Kansas City 7, Detroit 4
Texas 5, Oakland 0
Toronto 3, N.Y. Yankees 0
Boston 6, Tampa Bay 4
Chicago White Sox 8, Cleveland 1
Minnesota 3, Seattle 2
L.A. Angels 10, Houston 4

NATIONAL LEAGUE
St. Louis 10, Chicago Cubs 4
Washington 6, Pittsburgh 1
Miami 6, Atlanta 4
Cincinnati 6, Milwaukee 1
Philadelphia 10, N.Y. Mets 8
San Francisco 9, San Diego 6 (10 Innings)
L.A. Dodgers 14, Colorado 1

WOMEN'S NATIONAL BASKETBALL ASSOCIATION
Phoenix 101, N.Y. Liberty 94

TOP 25 COLLEGE FOOTBALL

(1) Alabama 48, Kent St. 0
(23) Mississippi 45, (12) Georgia 14
(13) Florida St. 55, South Florida 35
(11) Wisconsin 30, (8) Michigan St. 6
(14) Tennessee 38, (19) Florida 28
(4) Michigan 49, Penn St. 10
Auburn 18, (18) LSU 13
(6) Houston 64, Texas St. 3
(20) Nebraska 24, Northwestern 13
(16) Baylor 35, Oklahoma St. 24
(3) Louisville 59, Marshall 28
(7) Stanford 22, UCLA 13
(10) Texas A&M 45, (17) Arkansas 24
(9) Washington 35, Arizona 28 (OT)

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Lisa Blumenfeld/Getty Images(LOS ANGELES) -- He has been the voice of the Los Angeles Dodgers for longer than most of their fans have been alive. Vin Scully is retiring after the 2016 season, and the team honored his career with a pregame ceremony about an hour long.

Major League Baseball Commissioner Rob Manfred, star pitchers Sandy Koufax and Clayton Kershaw, Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti, and actor Kevin Costner were among the speakers. But the main attraction was Scully himself, who began his speech with one of his signature lines.

"Hi everybody and a very pleasant good evening to you," he said as the crowd roared.

Bringing his conversational style from the broadcast booth down to the field for a while, Scully made sure to thank the countless people with whom he's crossed paths over the years, but gave special thanks to the fans.

Scully spent 67 years behind the microphone for the Dodgers, acting as the narrator for three perfect games, and five Dodgers World Series Championships. His voice was the backdrop to indelible memories, including Hank Aaron's record-breaking 715th home run, Bill Buckner's immortal World Series error, and Kirk Gibson's momentous home run in Game One of the 1988 World Series.

He talked about growing up enthralled by the roar the crowd and his plans for the future.

"If you're 65 and retire, you might have 20 years left of life or more and you better have some plans," he joked. "When you're 89 and they ask you what your plans are...I'm trying to live."

But the legendary broadcaster made sure to sign off with another of his famous lines exclaiming, "It's time for Dodger's baseball!"

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Hector Amezcua/Sacramento Bee/MCT via Getty Images(SACRAMENTO, Calif.) -- A pie in the face of a former NBA star lands one man in jail.

It was a coconut cream pie, according to local activist Sean Thompson, who took the treat from his grocery bag and smashed it in the face of Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson at a charity event.

Johnson, who spent 12 seasons as point guard for the Phoenix Suns, reacted by reportedly tackling the pie-wielder.

Thompson told ABC station KXTV-TV the incident landed him in the hospital.

"And I have nine stitches to show for it," he said.

Although he liked the three-time NBA All-Star when he first became mayor, the activist told KXTV-TV he was upset that Johnson paid more attention to the Sacramento Kings instead of the homeless.

"He's had a lot of opportunities to help a lot of people and he's just ignored every one of them," Thompson said.

The pie-wielder said to KXTV-TV the mayor "overreacted."

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Robert Binder/MLB Photos via Getty Images(SEATTLE) -- Steve Clevenger has been suspended by the Seattle Mariners for the remainder of the season after the catcher posted racially charged tweets regarding the unrest in Charlotte, North Carolina.

"As soon as we became aware of the tweets posted by Steve yesterday, we began to examine all of our options in regard to his standing on the team," Mariners general manager Jerry Dipoto said in a statement Friday. "Today we have informed him that he is suspended for the reminder of the season without pay."

Clevenger, 30, took to Twitter on Thursday, two days after the fatal police shooting of Keith Lamont Scott, which sparked the demonstrations in Charlotte.

Following Clevenger's tweets, Dipoto said in a statement Thursday that the team was "very disappointed."

"While he is certainly free to express himself, his tweets do not in any way represent the opinions of the Seattle Mariners. We strongly disagree with the language and tone of his comments," Dipoto said Thursday.

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Phil Ellsworth / ESPN Images(MIAMI) -- Bad news for Miami Heat fans: It doesn't look like Chris Bosh will be returning to the court anytime soon.

The team announced on Friday that the power forward failed his pre-season physical and said "there is no timetable for his return."

"The Miami HEAT and Chris Bosh, in consultation with team doctors and other physicians, have been working together for many months with the mutual goal of having Chris return to the court as soon as possible," the Heat said in a statement. "Chris has now taken his pre-season physical. The Miami HEAT regret that it remains unable to clear Chris to return to basketball activities, and there is no timetable for his return."

Bosh, 32, has been plagued by blood clots.

The team did not offer any further details on his condition, saying: "We are not able to comment further in light of Article XXII, Section 3(e) of the NBA Collective Bargaining Agreement, which precludes a team from releasing certain medical information without a player's consent."

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