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Yanks hurler gets 81-game ban…Pelicans practice with top pick…Football Hall finalists

NEW YORK (AP) — New York Yankees starting pitcher Domingo Germán  will miss the first 63 games of the upcoming season as part of an 81-game ban for violating Major League Baseball’s domestic violence policy. Germán was put on administrative leave on Sept. 19 while MLB investigated an alleged domestic violence incident involving his girlfriend, with whom he has at least one child. He missed the final nine games of the 2019 regular season and all nine of New York’s postseason games.

NEW ORLEANS (AP) — Zion Williamson returned to practice with the New Orleans Pelicans yesterday for the first time since he had arthroscopic knee surgery shortly before the season. The first player taken in last year’s NBA draft said he “felt really good out there,” but cannot say when he’ll make his regular-season debut. Williamson said he first must pass “assessments” by team medical staff before the decision can rest solely with him.

CANTON, OHIO — The 15 modern-era player finalists for the Pro Football Hall of Fame’s Class of 2020 have been announced, and it includes first-year eligible players Troy Polamalu (poh-lah-MAH’-loo) and Reggie Wayne. LeRoy Butler, Torry Holt, Sam Mills, Zach Thomas and Bryant Young are first-time finalists who previously have been eligible for the Hall. The other player finalists are Steve Atwater, Tony Boselli, Isaac Bruce and Alan Faneca , along with Steve Hutchinson, Edgerrin James, John Lynch and Richard Seymour.

UNDATED (AP) — Former Cincinnati Bengals quarterback, offensive coordinator and head coach Sam Wyche has died of melanoma at age 74, according to the team. One of the Bengals’ original quarterbacks, Wyche coached the Bengals to their second Super Bowl during the 1988 season by using a no-huddle offense that forced the league to change its substitution rules. He played three seasons with Cincinnati, throwing for 12 touchdowns with eight interceptions.

SOUTH BEND, Ind. (AP) — Cole Kmet is the latest Notre Dame player to give up his final year of eligibility to enter the NFL draft. Kmet initially said in November that he intended to return before announcing on Twitter that he was turning pro. He joins running back Tony Jones Jr. and safety Alohi Gilman in making themselves available for the April draft. Quarterback Ian Book will return to Notre Dame next season.

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