Thursday's Sports In Brief
LOS ANGELES (AP) Josh Hamilton is heading to the Los Angeles Angels, lured with a $125 million, five-year contract that steps up the migration of high-profile stars to Southern California.
The Angels persuaded the free-agent outfielder to leave the Texas Rangers with their third big-money offseason signing in two years. Hamilton heads to Anaheim after first baseman Albert Pujols came West for $240 million last December along with pitcher C.J. Wilson - Hamilton's Texas teammate - for $77.5 million.
Still, the Angels failed to make the playoffs for the third straight year. General manager Jerry Dipoto had said Wednesday that he didn't think a major move was ``imminent or required.''
But owner Arte Moreno pulled off another coup by getting Hamilton. The 2010 AL MVP, Pujols and AL Rookie of the Year Mike Trout combined for 103 home runs and 316 RBIs last season.
MINNEAPOLIS (AP) - The Minnesota Twins finalized a $10 million, two-year contract with right-hander Kevin Correia to fill a rotation spot after their starters posted the second-worst ERA in the majors last season.
The 32-year-old, an All-Star in 2011, went 12-11 with a 4.21 ERA for Pittsburgh this year.
He will make $4.5 million next year and $5.5 million in 2014. This will be his fourth major league team and first time in the AL.
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) - A federal appeals court will hear Barry Bonds' appeal of his obstruction of justice conviction early next year.
The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals scheduled oral arguments for Feb. 13 before a three-judge panel in San Francisco.
The career home run leader was convicted in April 2011 of one felony obstruction count for giving an evasive, rambling reply during a 2003 grand jury appearance when asked whether he received drugs that required a syringe.
The jury deadlocked on three charges he made false statements, and prosecutors dropped those counts in August 2011.
NEW YORK (AP) - Two days of talks between the NHL, the players' association, and federal mediators still haven't provided any answers how to end the lockout.
Representatives from the fighting sides made it into the same room with a federal mediator. They just didn't make any noticeable progress.
After a failed day Wednesday when the parties on either end of the hockey labor dispute never met with each other, lawyers from each group spoke face to face. They appear no closer to a deal to save the season.
Players' association special counsel Steve Fehr, who met with league lead counsel Bob Batterman, said the sides intend to talk Friday either in person or by phone. At no point on either day this week did union executive director Donald Fehr meet with NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman and deputy commissioner Bill Daly.
METAIRIE, La. (AP) - Saints assistant head coach Joe Vitt said witnesses in the NFL's bounty investigation of the New Orleans Saints have lied about him and the organization, and that their stories might change in federal court.
Alluding to a defamation lawsuit filed by Saints linebacker Jon Vilma against NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell, Vitt angrily said he feels the truth about the pay-for-pain system will come out before U.S. District Judge Ginger Berrigan, who is presiding over the pending case in New Orleans.
Vitt's comments came a day after The Associated Press reported that former Saints defensive coordinator Gregg Williams testified in recent NFL appeal hearings that he tried to stop the Saints' bounty program, only to be overruled by Vitt. The AP obtained transcripts from the closed-door hearings, which were held for Vilma and three other players who had been punished in the bounty probe.
NEW YORK (AP) - The Big East is headed for another break up. This time, the seven prominent basketball schools that don't play FBS football are planning to cut ties with the ever-changing conference.
The divorce is expected to be complicated, maybe even contentious, with millions of dollars and possibly the future of the league at stake.
The Big East's non-football members - St. John's, Georgetown, Marquette, DePaul, Seton hall, Providence and Villanova - decided to separate from the conference, a person familiar with the decision told The Associated Press. The person spoke on condition of anonymity because officials from those schools are still sorting through details and trying to figure how best to split from the conference. No official announcement was imminent, the person said.
NEW YORK (AP) - Weary of two decades of defeat in Europe, the Americans are breaking from precedent with a captain uniquely suited for the 2014 Ryder Cup in Scotland.
Tom Watson will be by far the oldest man to fill the role and the first repeat captain for the U.S. since Jack Nicklaus in 1987. But he's also the last American to lead the team to victory on the road, and he knows how to win in the blustery Scottish weather.
The Americans have lost seven of the last nine Ryder Cups and have not won away from home since 1993, when Watson was the captain at The Belfry in England. They are coming off a staggering loss this year at Medinah, where Europe strung together a remarkable rally from a 10-6 deficit going into the final day to win by one point.