National Sports Briefs: Steinbrenner hands over the reins
NEW YORKó George Steinbrenner is boss of the New York Yankees no more.
The omnipresent owner’s colorful 35-year reign of pronouncements, threats and firings ended Thursday when he passed control of baseball’s most famous franchise to his youngest son, Hal.
The elder Steinbrenner has gradually withdrawn from the Yankees’ day-to-day operations in recent years as his health faded, and brothers Hal and Hank were appointed co-chairmen in April.
“I realize it’s a great responsibility,” said Hal Steinbrenner, who turns 40 on Dec. 3. “My dad is, needless to say, a tough act to follow.”
– NEW YORK ó CC Sabathia will have a deadline to accept the New York Yankees’ contract proposal.
“We’ve made him an offer. It’s not going to be there forever,” Hal Steinbrenner said Thursday.
New York offered a six-year contract to the pitcher last Friday. The proposal exceeds Johan Santana’s $137.5 million, six-year contract with the New York Mets both in total and average.
FRANKFURT, Germany ó Former heavyweight champion Riddick Bowe will fight for the first time in three years on the undercard of the IBF title fight between Wladimir Klitschko and Hasim Rahman.
Bowe’s opponent for the Dec. 13 fight is yet to be determined, promoters said Thursday.
Bowe, 41, retired in 1996 and came back in 2004. He had another fight in 2005 and has not fought since.
Bowe’s only loss in 43 fights was against Evander Holyfield, who at 46, is preparing to fight Nikolai Valuev next month for the WBA title.
– Reports in German newspapers on Thursday said Lennox Lewis, 42, was preparing for a comeback fight against Vitali Klitschko, Wladimir’s older brother, and the WBC champion.
Bild newspaper said the fight could take place in the middle of next year.
AUBURN HILLS, Mich. ó Coach Bill Laimbeer has been re-signed to a two-year contract by the WNBA champion Detroit Shock.
The two-time NBA champion as a member of the Detroit Pistons guided the Shock this summer to their third title during his seven years as coach.
HONG KONG ó John Daly put himself within four strokes of joint leaders Liang Wenchong of China and South African Richard Sterne, who both shot a 6-under 64 in the first round of the $2.5 million Hong Kong Open on Thursday.
Daly was 4-under after 15 holes, but bogeys on the last two holes cost him a share of fifth place in the jointly sanctioned European Tour and Asian Tour event.
“I’m not too disappointed, being a little rusty. I haven’t played in a month. Two under par on the first round here is pretty good. I’ll take it,” the 42-year-old American said.
Daly is a former British Open and PGA Championship winner now ranked No. 788 in the world.
– PEBBLE BEACH, Calif. ó John Cook shot a 10-under 62 on Thursday to take a three-stroke lead over Brad Martin after the first round of the Callaway Golf Pebble Beach Invitational.
Cook, 51, is one of eight Champions Tour entrants in the tournament that features players from the four major tours.