NEW YORK — Major League Baseball is considering expanding the playoffs to nearly half the 30 teams and allowing higher-seeded wild-card teams to choose opponents.
The playoffs would grow from 10 clubs to 14 under the plan, first reported Monday by the New York Post. There would be four wild cards in each league, up from two.
Any proposal would have to be negotiated with the players' association. The current collective bargaining agreement runs through the 2021 season.
Chargers QB Rivers will enter free agency after 16 seasons
COSTA MESA, Calif. — Philip Rivers' 16-year career with the Chargers has come to an end.
The franchise announced Monday that Rivers will enter free agency and won't return to Los Angeles for the upcoming season. General manager Tom Telesco said in a statement that as they talked through various scenarios with Rivers, it became apparent it would be best for both "to turn the page on what has truly been a remarkable run."
Los Angeles has quarterbacks Tyrod Taylor and Easton Stick under contract. Taylor will be entering his 10th season and has 46 starts with Buffalo and Cleveland. Stick was selected in the fifth round last season.
Ex-Blue Jays reliever sues Astros in sign-stealing scandal
LOS ANGELES — Former major league pitcher Mike Bolsinger sued the Houston Astros on Monday, claiming their sign-stealing scheme contributed to a poor relief appearance in August 2017 that essentially ended his big league career.
Bolsinger's suit in Los Angeles County Superior Court seeks unspecified damages for interfering with and harming his career. According to the suit, Bolsinger, then a reliever with the Toronto Blue Jays, was put into a game at Houston on Aug. 4, 2017, and allowed four runs, four hits and three walks in one-third of an inning in a 16-7 loss.
Fickell tells Michigan State he's staying at Cincinnati
CINCINNATI — Coach Luke Fickell informed Michigan State on Monday that he's decided to stay at Cincinnati, leaving the Spartans to resume their search to find Mark Dantonio's replacement.
Fickell has rebuilt Cincinnati into a Top 25 program in his three seasons. Dantonio, who stepped down from the job this month, also coached at Cincinnati.
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After considering the Michigan State job over the weekend, Fickell announced he was staying because his family is comfortable in Cincinnati.
Vikings hire Capers as senior defensive assistant
EAGAN, Minn. — The Minnesota Vikings hired long-time NFL coach Dom Capers on Monday as a senior defensive assistant on an already experienced staff.
The 69-year-old Capers will start his 33rd season as a coach in the league, after serving last year as a senior defensive assistant for Jacksonville. Capers will help co-defensive coordinators Andre Patterson (defensive line) and Adam Zimmer (linebackers), both of whom also coach a position group.
NHL cool to Olympic participation despite IIHF assurances
The NHL remains reluctant to reverse course and compete at the 2022 Winter Games in Beijing despite new assurances from Olympic officials to lift various major stumbling blocks, which also have the backing of the league's players.
NHL deputy commissioner Bill Daly significantly tamped down hopes of the world's best players returning to the Olympics for the first time since 2014 by referring to recent talks as being "very preliminary" and leaving open many unanswered questions.
Catchings, Jackson headline women's hoops Hall of Fame class
NEW YORK — Tamika Catchings, Lauren Jackson and Swin Cash are headed to the Women's Basketball Hall of Fame.
The trio headline the Class of 2020. Joining the three former WNBA stars are Carol Callan (contributor), Carol Stiff (contributor), Sue Donohoe (contributor) and Debbie Brock (veteran player). The seven members will be inducted on June 13.
AP Source: Browns Garrett meets with NFL about return
CLEVELAND — Suspended Browns star defensive end Myles Garrett met Monday with NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell to discuss his possible reinstatement, a person familiar with the meeting told The Associated Press.
Garrett was banned indefinitely for ripping off Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Mason Rudolph's helmet and hitting him over the head with it during the closing seconds of a Nov. 15 game.
There is no timetable for Garrett's return. However, he has expressed remorse for his conduct, and his meeting with Goodell was a necessary step in order to get back on the field in 2020.