Wakeup call: Derek Lowe, Yankee; Metta World Peace, sex-crazed vampire

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Wakeup call: Derek Lowe, Yankee; Metta World Peace, sex-crazed vampire

Here's your wakeup call -- a combination of newsworthy andor interesting tidbits -- for Tuesday, August 14:

BASEBALL
That decision to pass on Derek Lowe isn't looking so hot now, Ben. (NBC's Hardball Talk)

On the other hand, trading Anibal Sanchez way back when wasn't such a bad idea. (Hardball Talk)

The Rays have won seven in a row, 10 of their last 12, and are taking charge of the wild-card race. (AP)

Craig Calcaterra finds it "mind-boggling" that the Nationals, adhering to a strict innings limit, plan to shut down Stephen Strasburg for the playoffs. (Hardball Talk) That makes all of us, Craig.

COLLEGE FOOTBALL
And the hits just keep on coming: Penn State now has accreditation problems as a result of the Sandusky scandal. (AP)

Those responsible for putting Julius Peppers' transcript on a University of North Carolina Web site, take one step forward. (AP)

A UCLA linebacker is giving up football because of concussions. (AP)

GOLF
The Rory McIlroyTiger Woods comparisons have begun. (AP)

Yeah, your missing the cut at the PGA was all their fault, Lee. (AP)

HOCKEY
From the Do-As-I-Say-Not-As-I-Do playbook: Crying poverty in labor talks in the same year you get a raise. (NBC's Pro Hockey Talk) Well played, Bettman.

No wonder Alex Ovechkin is worried about a lockout. (CSN Washington)

Whether we get one or not may become clearer today, when the NHLPA makes its counteroffer. (AP)

Gear up, Bruins Nation: You'll be seeing Max Pacioretty in the bleu, blanc and rouge for at least six more years. (AP)

PRO BASKETBALL
Turns out the Magic could have gotten Andrew Iguodala and Andrew Bynum in the Dwight Howard trade, but that would have messed with their we-want-to-suck strategy. (NBC's Pro Basketball Talk)

Metta World Peace, sex-crazed vampire elder. Sounds about right. (Pro Basketball Talk)

PRO FOOTBALL
Justin Tuck's had just about enough of this "the-Giants-didn't-win-it-we-lost-it" talk coming out of Green Bay and San Francisco. (NBC's Pro Football Talk)

Go figure: Joe Philbin didn't think Chad Johnson and the Dolphins were a good fit. (AP)

The news isn't all bad in New Orleans. The Saints were cleared by the state police and the FBI in their potential Spygate scandal. (AP)

Hey, Rex: We know you're going to run the wildcat with Tebow. No need for the Cone of Silence routine. (AP)

Former Red Sox prospect Andy Marte killed in car crash in Dominican Republic

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Former Red Sox prospect Andy Marte killed in car crash in Dominican Republic

Former major leaguer Andy Marte, a one-time top prospect in the Red Sox organization, was killed in a car crash in the Dominican Republic on Sunday. He was 33.

Marte was killed the same day that Royals pitcher Yordano Ventura died in a separate car crash in the Dominican. Ventura was 25. Coincidentally, Ventura was the Royals starting pitcher in Marte's final major league game, for the Arizona Diamondbacks on Aug. 6, 2014.

Marte, drafted by the Braves in 2000, was ranked the No. 9 prospect in baseball in 2005 when the third baseman was traded to the Red Sox as part of the deal that sent shortstop Edgar Renteria to Atlanta and Marte became the top-ranked prospect in the Red Sox organization.  

Marte was traded by the Red Sox to the Indians in 2006 in the deal that sent Coco Crisp to Boston and spent five seasons with Cleveland. His best season was 2009 (.232, six home runs, 25 RBI in 47 games). After a six-game stint with Arizona in 2014, he played in South Korea the past two years.  

Metropolitan traffic authorities in the Dominican told the Associated Press that Marte died when a car he was driving his a house along the highway between San Francisco de Macoris and Pimentel, about 95 miles (150 kilometers) north of the capital.
 

Royals pitcher Yordano Ventura killed in car crash in Dominican Republic

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Royals pitcher Yordano Ventura killed in car crash in Dominican Republic

Kansas City Royals pitcher Yordano Ventura was killed in a car crash in in the Dominican Republic on Sunday morning, according to multiple reports. Ventura was 25 years old.

Highway patrol spokesman Jacobo Mateo told the Associated Press that Ventura died on a highway leading to the town of Juan Adrian, about 40 miles (70 kilometers) northwest of Santo Domingo. He says it's not clear if Ventura was driving.

Ventura was killed the same day former major leaguer Andy Marte died in a separate car crash in the Dominican. Coincidentally, Ventura was the starting pitcher in Marte's final MLB game, for the Arizona Diamondbacks on Aug. 6, 2014. 

Ventura was 13-8 with a 4.08 ERA for the Royals' 2015 World Series champions and 11-12 with a 4.45 ERA in 32 starts in 2016. The right-hander made his major league debut in 2013 and in 2014 went 14-10 with a 3.20 ERA for Kansas City's A.L. pennant winners. 

Ironically, Ventura paid tribute to his good friend and fellow Dominican, Oscar Tavares, who was also killed in a car crash in the D.R. in October 2014, by wearing Tavares' initials and R.I.P. on his cap before Ventura's start in Game 6 of the World Series in 2014. 

Ventura is the second current major league player to die in the past five months. Former Miami Marlins ace Jose Fernandez was killed in a boating accident in Miami on Sept. 25.