MLB suspends Marisnick two games for collision

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ARLINGTON, Texas (AP) - Houston Astros outfielder Jake Marisnick was suspended for two games by Major League Baseball on Thursday for his violent home plate collision with Los Angeles Angels catcher Jonathan Lucroy before the All-Star break.

Marisnick said he still felt terrible about the play and had a rough couple of days during the break to digest the situation. He also said he had spoken with Lucroy, who sustained a concussion and a broken nose.

"I've seen a lot of takes on it, and obviously everybody has their own opinion," Marisnick said before the AL West-leading Astros played their first game after the break. "But I know deep down in my heart that I had no intent to hurt, or make contact, with him."

Joe Torre, MLB's chief baseball officer, said he thoroughly reviewed the play from all angles. While acknowledging he didn't believe Marisnick intended to injure Lucroy, Torre said the actions in last Sunday's game warranted discipline because they violated MLB rules designed to protect catchers from that type of situation.

Marisnick, who also was fined, appealed the suspension and was available to play in the series opener against Texas though he wasn't in the starting lineup. He said he wanted an opportunity to speak more thoroughly with MLB officials about the play.

Astros manager AJ Hinch, a former big league catcher, said he remained steadfast in his defense of Marisnick and how unintentional the play was, and was also still empathetic toward Lucroy.

"I don't think the suspension was necessary, I don't think it was warranted, but MLB wants to maintain their control over the collisions at the plate, and for all of the right reasons," Hinch said. "I haven't seen in my career too many unintentional acts warrant a discipline, but this is a tough one because of the extent of the injury to Jonathan Lucroy and the nature of the rule around home plate."

Lucroy was carted off the field after the collision at the end of the eighth inning of a home game the Astros won in 10 innings. Marisnick was called out for colliding with Lucroy, and the call was upheld after a crew chief review.

PRO BASEBALL

NEW YORK (AP) - Baseball's All-Star Game had a record low television rating.

The American League's 4-3 victory over the National League on Tuesday night in Cleveland had a 5.0 rating and 11 share on Fox, according to Nielsen Media Research. The game was seen by an average of 5.93 million households and 8.14 million viewers.

That is down from the previous record low rating of 5.2 and 8.69 million viewers for the AL's 8-6, 10-inning victory last year.

AUTO RACING

SPARTA, Ky. (AP) - Tyler Ankrum took the lead when Brett Moffitt ran out of fuel with less than two laps to go and cruised to his first NASCAR Gander Outdoors Truck Series victory at Kentucky Speedway.

The 18-year-old Ankrum finished 7.373 seconds ahead of Stewart Friesen on the 1.5-mile tri-oval to earn a spot in the eight-man series playoffs. Ankrum led a race-high 40 of the 150 laps in the No. 17 Toyota and gave DGR Crosley its first team victory.

Moffitt, the defending series champion and a two-time winner this year, ended up seventh - the last truck on the lead lap.

PRO GOLF

SYLVANIA, Ohio (AP) - Alena Sharp of Canada and Youngin Chun of South Korea shared the Marathon Classic lead at 7-under 64, a stroke ahead of Stacy Lewis and three others at Highland Meadows Golf Club.

The 38-year-old Sharp, winless on the LPGA Tour, had eight birdies and a bogey.

The 19-year-old Chun, also seeking her first LPGA Tour victory, had a bogey-free round.

Lewis won the last of her 12 LPGA Tour titles in 2017. She was born in nearby Toledo and has an endorsement deal with Marathon Oil. The Texan had seven birdies and a bogey.

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