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AP Top Sports News At 8 a.m. EDT

Royals return to playoffs in dramatic fashion
KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) -- It had been 29 years since the Kansas City Royals had last been to the postseason - nearly three decades spent mostly in baseball's backwater, a small-market organization on a shoe-string budget trying in vain to compete with the big boys....

Playoff managers hit, miss on contesting calls
For Buck Showalter, Don Mattingly and every other manager in these playoffs, it promises to be a most challenging postseason....

Jeter launches site to connect athletes to fans
NEW YORK (AP) -- Derek Jeter was one of the world's most covered athletes in media during his 20-season career with the New York Yankees. Now, he's joining media with a new website devoted to delivering athletes' "unfiltered" views to the fans....

Coaches use large network to watch for injury
The sideline is often the worst place to watch a football game. Even for the head coach standing front and center, getting a good look at what is happening on the field can be difficult....

Former NBA player George seeks new fraud trial
NEWARK, N.J. (AP) -- A former NBA player convicted of wire fraud in an alleged real estate Ponzi scheme is seeking to have his conviction thrown out and claiming prosecutorial misconduct, among other allegations....

Phelps apologizes after another brush with the law
Michael Phelps can't seem to break a disturbing pattern....

Your Top Plays for Today
Your Top Plays for Today: AP's Sports Guide...

Raiders make Tony Sparano interim coach
ALAMEDA, Calif. (AP) -- Reggie McKenzie believes he put together a roster capable of competing for a playoff spot. When that roster got off to an 0-4 start and wasn't even competitive in two games, the Oakland Raiders general manager decided he needed to fire coach Dennis Allen....

Soto to catch Lester for Athletics vs Royals
KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) -- Athletics ace Jon Lester will have Geovany Soto behind the plate for the first time when he takes the mound in Tuesday night's AL wild-card game against the Kansas City Royals....

NFL says Abdullah should not have been penalized
KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) -- The NFL said Tuesday that Kansas City Chiefs safety Husain Abdullah should not have been penalized for unsportsmanlike conduct when he dropped to his knees in prayer after an interception....

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