Tuesday's Sports In Brief - NBC Sports

Tuesday's Sports In Brief
August 28, 2013, 4:00 am

TENNIS

NEW YORK (AP) Roger Federer easily won his delayed first match at the U.S. Open, needing just 93 minutes to beat Grega Zemlja of Slovenia, 6-3, 6-2, 7-5, in a matchup postponed from Monday night because of rain.

Top-seeded Novak Djokovic began his bid for a second U.S. Open title, and seventh major trophy overall, by beating 112th-ranked Ricardas Berankis of Lithuania 6-1, 6-2, 6-2. Other straight-set winners included No. 5 Tomas Berdych and No. 10 Milos Raonic. On a day that American men went 5-2, led by No. 13 John Isner and No. 26 Sam Querrey, a handful of seeded players made quick departures, including No. 14 Jerzy Janowicz of Poland, a semifinalist at Wimbledon last month. Other losers included No. 15 Nicolas Almagro, No. 25 Grigor Dimitrov and No. 28 Juan Monaco.

In the women's draw, 17-year-old American qualifier Victoria Duval, ranked 296th, eliminating 2011 U.S. Open winner Sam Stosur 5-7, 6-4, 6-4. Other seeded women on the way out were No. 17 Dominika Cibulkova, No. 20 Nadia Petrova and No. 31 Klara Zakopalova. No. 2 Victoria Azarenka, the 2012 U.S. Open runner-up and a two-time Australian Open winner, beat 99th-ranked Dinah Pfizenmaier 6-0, 6-0.

PRO FOOTBALL

NEW YORK (AP) - The NFL will keep a close eye on hits to the knees of defenseless players this season, with the possibility of extending the rules protecting such players.

If the league's competition committee finds enough evidence this season that hits to the knees are "becoming a problem," it could take action, chief of football operations Ray Anderson told The Associated Press.

The committee could make a recommendation to the owners next March to prohibit direct hits to the knees of defenseless players. The owners would then vote on such a change.

FOXBOROUGH, Mass. (AP) - The NFL Players Association has filed a grievance to help former New England Patriots star tight end Aaron Hernandez collect an $82,000 workout bonus.

Hernandez's contract provided for him to receive that amount if he participated in 90 percent of the team's voluntary offseason workouts.

The Patriots cut Hernandez after he was arrested on June 26 and before he was charged with murder later that day. He pleaded not guilty and is being held without bail in the shooting death of Odin Lloyd, a friend whose body was found June 17 near Hernandez's house. The union believes Hernandez earned the bonus before his arrest.

Patriots owner Robert Kraft indicated he disagreed.

FOXBOROUGH, Mass. (AP) - Tim Tebow has one game left to improve his chances of staying with the New England Patriots after surviving the mandatory roster cut to 75 players.

Tebow is expected to see considerable playing time Thursday night against the New York Giants in the Patriots' final exhibition game. He played poorly in the first two games and did not play in the third.

The third-string quarterback faces another hurdle when all NFL teams must reduce their rosters on Saturday to the regular-season limit of 53.

NEWPORT BEACH, Calif. (AP) - A California judge issued an arrest warrant for Titus Young after the former Detroit Lions wide receiver missed a fourth court hearing on charges of burglary and attempted burglary.

However, Young's attorney Altus Hudson said he doesn't expect his client to be arrested, saying the court knows his location. He declined to elaborate outside court.

Orange County Superior Court Judge Andre Manssourian issued the $100,000 bench warrant after meeting with Hudson and the district attorney's office in chambers. The judge also revoked the 24-year-old Young's bail and accepted a document from the defense under seal.

BASEBALL

PITTSBURGH (AP) - A day after falling out of first place, the Pittsburgh Pirates made a trade they feel will bolster their offense. And it was welcome news to manager Clint Hurdle and his players.

The Pirates acquired outfielder Marlon Byrd and catcher John Buck from the New York Mets, hoping the veterans can help the franchise to its first playoff berth in 21 years.

The Pirates began the day a half-game behind St. Louis in the National League Central after the Cardinals took sole possession of first place the previous night while the Pirates were idle.

The Pirates sent the Mets minor league infielder Dilson Herrera and a player to be named later in exchange for Byrd, Buck and cash considerations.

BASKETBALL

LOS ANGELES (AP) - Scottie Pippen won't face criminal charges for a fight with a man who authorities say was drunk when he demanded an autograph and photo with the former Chicago Bulls star, then faked seizures after claiming Pippen punched him in the face.

The Los Angeles County district attorney's office said there was insufficient evidence to bring assault charges against Pippen for the altercation with Camran Shafighi at Nobu, a restaurant and celebrity hangout on the beach in Malibu.

AUTO RACING

KANNAPOLIS, N.C. (AP) - Gene Haas wanted to build a dream team, with an opportunity to see his name in Victory Lane. He wasn't going to let Tony Stewart stand in his way of making that happen.

Haas admitted he went rogue in courting Kurt Busch for a non-existent fourth team at Stewart-Haas Racing while Stewart was incapacitated with a broken leg earlier this month. When he finally brought his business partner up to speed on his expansion plans, Stewart balked.

But Haas forged ahead anyway with a multi-year offer to Busch, who was introduced as the newest driver at SHR, where officials are now scrambling to make room at an organization that will double from two cars in 2012 to four next season.

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