Professional Sports

Pens end Caps’ streak at five wins

WASHINGTON — The calendar said December. The intensity felt like late spring. The third meeting this season between longtime rivals Pittsburgh and Washington featured tight checking, strong goaltending and more than a few punches. The Penguins won 2-1 on Wednesday night, yet the Capitals ...

Pens are unable to hold lead

PITTSBURGH — The Anaheim Ducks would love to stop playing from behind. It’s just not happening. And somehow it’s not a problem, either. Particularly on the road. The Ducks spotted the Pittsburgh Penguins two first-period goals and then roared back for a 4-2 victory on Monday for their ...

Pirates finalize deal with pitcher

PITTSBURGH — Pitcher Jordan Lyles and the Pittsburgh Pirates have finalized a $2.05 million, one-year contract. The 28-year-old right-hander can earn additional award bonuses as part of the deal, agreed to last week and announced Monday. Lyles is 31-52 with a 5.28 ERA in 217 appearances ...

Steelers top Patriots to snap skid

PITTSBURGH — Ben Roethlisberger didn’t want to use the word “crossroads.” He did anyway. His team mired in a three-game losing streak and with Tom Brady and the New England Patriots on the other sideline Sunday — a sight that typically signals doom for Roethlisberger and the ...

Win more important than style points

PITTSBURGH — The Steelers took a lot of mystery out of the bumpy playoff chase on Sunday. They beat the New England Patriots 17-10 in front of a rocking crowd at Heinz Field and demonstrated how simple all the math can actually be. Win and they’re in. If they take care of their own ...

Samuels provides Pittsburgh with big lift

PITTSBURGH — Steelers rookie Jaylen Samuels finished Sunday both tired and satisfied. Samuels ran for 142 yards on 19 carries, and caught two passes for another 30 yards in the Steelers’ 17-10 victory over the New England Patriots at Heinz Field. The stage was big, and so was Samuels’ ...

Kessel OT goal lifts Pens

PITTSBURGH — Pittsburgh Penguins goaltender Matt Murray was just happy to be back on the ice after a rocky start to the season. Murray made his first start in a month and his strong play, particularly in overtime, helped the Penguins to another win. Phil Kessel scored a power-play goal at ...

Steelers activate WR Rogers; Conner listed as doubtful

PITTSBURGH — Looks like Pittsburgh Steelers running back James Conner’s balky left ankle won’t be ready to go against the Patriots. The AFC North leaders downgraded Conner from questionable to doubtful for today’s game against New England. Conner, sixth in the NFL with 909 yards ...

Patriots preparing for Bell-less team

Next opponent What: New England at Pittsburgh, Sunday, 4:25 p.m. TV: CBS Records: Patriots (9-4); Steelers (7-5-1) The line: Patriots by 2 1⁄2 FOXBOROUGH, Mass. — If there’s been a blueprint to having success against the Patriots defense this season, it’s started with ...

Blackhawks snap steak on Penguins

CHICAGO — Jonathan Toews had a goal and two assists, and the Chicago Blackhawks snapped an eight-game losing streak by topping the Pittsburgh Penguins 6-3 on Wednesday night. Marcus Kruger, Brent Seabrook, Andreas Martinsen, Brandon Saad each had a goal and an assist for Chicago, which ...

Morton reaches new deal with Rays

LAS VEGAS — All-Star pitcher Charlie Morton has reached a deal with the Tampa Bay Rays. A person familiar with the agreement tells The Associated Press the contract is for two years and $30 million. The person spoke on condition of anonymity because the deal hasn’t been officially ...

No incentive left for hitters to play the entire field

LAS VEGAS — Ask baseball managers what they think about the dreaded shift, and most of them have the same answer. It’s not a problem if the hitters don’t make it one. “There’s an easy way to combat that,” Oakland’s Bob Melvin said. “Just hit the ball the other ...

Backup provides relief for Pens

UNIONDALE, N.Y. — Casey DeSmith is providing a lift for the Pittsburgh Penguins while Matt Murray is sidelined by a lower-body injury. DeSmith made 25 saves to lead the Penguins to a 2-1 shootout win against the New York Islanders on Monday night. “He was really good all night. He was ...

Free agents aplenty this winter

Paul Goldschmidt and Robinson Cano have already switched teams this offseason, going to the Cardinals and Mets in major trades. As for Manny Machado and Bryce Harper — the jewels of the free agent market — they’re still waiting. Patrick Corbin and Josh Donaldson are already signed, ...

Smith, Baines elected to Baseball Hall of Fame

LAS VEGAS — Longtime closer Lee Smith and smooth-swinging Harold Baines were elected to the baseball Hall of Fame on Sunday. “Very shocked,” Baines said on a conference call. Former outfielder and manager Lou Piniella fell one vote short. Results of the 16-member Today’s Game Era ...

Raiders’ win a highlight in otherwise down season

OAKLAND, Calif. — Coach Jon Gruden ran off the field high-fiving Oakland fans on the way to the locker room. In a season with very little to celebrate, the Raiders had plenty to feel good about Sunday. Derek Carr threw a 6-yard touchdown pass to Derek Carrier with 21 seconds left before ...

Woes continue for Steelers with third straight loss

OAKLAND, Calif. — A Pittsburgh Steelers team that kept finding ways to win during a six-game winning streak now has fallen short at the end for a third straight game. A slick field that led to kicker Chris Boswell losing his footing on a potential game-tying kick is to blame this ...

Pens lose on power play

The Associated Press OTTAWA, Ontario — Ryan Dzingel scored on a power play at 1:20 of overtime to give the Ottawa Senators a 2-1 victory over the Pittsburgh Penguins on Saturday night. The Penguins were called for too many men on the ice, setting up the winning power play. Thomas Chabot ...

Deceased player had ties to both Curve, Pirates organizations

By Fabiola Sanchez The Associated Press CARACAS, Venezuela — Former major league players Luis Valbuena and Jose Castillo were killed in a car crash caused by highway bandits who then robbed them, officials said Friday. The 33-year-old Valbuena and 37-year-old Castillo died late Thursday ...

Versatile Samuels getting his shot

By Will Graves The Associated Press PITTSBURGH — Jaylen Samuels doesn’t get caught up in roles. Maybe because the one the Pittsburgh Steelers rookie is asked to fill seems to change by the week. During his college career at North Carolina State he was a hybrid. Sometimes he’d ...