National Sports Briefs
NEW YORK — Barry Bonds’ contract with the San Francisco Giants isn’t final just yet.
After the commissioner’s office rejected Bonds’ $15.8 million, one-year deal because it contained a personal-appearance provision, the team sent revised documents to his agent, Jeff Borris.
“At this time, Barry is not signing the new documents,” Borris said Wednesday.
Baseball’s Uniform Player Contract states a player “agrees to cooperate with the club in any and all reasonable promotional activities.” Bonds’ contract had additional language that the commissioner’s office rejected.
NEW YORK — Roger Clemens talked about his plight and laughed.
“I’m failing at retirement,” he said. “Let’s just face it. I’m failing miserably at it.”
44-year-old right-hander, unsure whether to retire or return for a 24th major league season, was the keynote speaker for the St. John’s winter baseball banquet on Wednesday night.
If he does pitch — and it sounds as if he will — Clemens will choose among his hometown Houston Astros, the New York Yankees and the Boston Red Sox.
CHICAGO — Right-hander Mark Prior and the Chicago Cubs agreed on a one-year deal Wednesday and avoided salary arbitration for $3,575,000.
LEXINGTON, Ky. — Kentucky and coach Rich Brooks finalized a new four-year agreement that raises his yearly salary to $1 million and keeps him under contract with the school through the 2010 season.
CONCORD — NASCAR changed its Nextel Cup past champions provisional Wednesday to limit it to only six uses per season.
There had previously been no limit to how many times a past Cup champion could use the provisional to ensure a spot in the field each week. The provisional was set aside for the 43rd spot in the race to the most recent former champion who did not qualify based on speed.
Now, a driver can only use the spot six times in a year, and the limit also applies to the entire team so that a car owner can’t use multiple past champions in the course of one season.
* DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. — Former Indy Racing League champion Tony Kanaan topped the speed chart Wednesday during the first of two days of testing at Daytona International Speedway.
NEW YORK — Mats Sundin’s breakaway goal snapped a third-period tie and lifted the surging Toronto Maple Leafs to a 2-1 victory over the New York Rangers on Wednesday night.
Sundin hit the 20-goal mark for the 16th straight season — every one spent in the NHL. That was enough to give the Leafs their fifth win in six games, including four on the road.