Slam City 


By: Jeff Yoder

Good Morning 

Remember a month ago? We were starving, clinging to baseball highlights and the World Cup with a hope and a prayer that breaking news would deliver rations on a daily basis. No more. Good riddance, summer. Today’s edition is at full capacity (∼2,000 words). On a Tuesday, no less.

Welcome to the fall sports kitchen. The menu is endless (tennis, baseball, football, basketball, soccer, golf, racing and hockey). Chew slow and save room for dessert. We’re about to cook. 

Letter Rip!


Slam City: The 2023 U.S. Open Guide

Photo: Corey Sipkin / Getty Images

#6 Coco Gauff Rallies, #4 Holger Rune Gets Upset & Everything You Need to Know for the 2023 U.S. Open in New York

Tennis fans, rejoice! It’s been six weeks since our tennis hiatus following Wimbledon’s summer slam, but the rackets are back for one last major in 2023. For the next two weeks, the U.S. Open will share the spotlight alongside the beginning of football season, and we’ll have daily updates from the action in New York. Here’s a recap of this year’s grand slam winners before the fourth and final major. Plus, the schedule and highlights from Day 1 as we get things started.

2023 Grand Slam Rewind (Champions)

Australian Open: A. Sabalenka (W), N. Djokovic (M)

French Open: I. Swiatek (W), N. Djokovic (M)

Wimbledon: M. Vondrousova (W), C. Alcaraz (M)

U.S. Open: TBD

2023 U.S. Open Schedule

1st Round (Yesterday & Today, Aug. 28-29)

2nd Round (Wednesday & Thursday, Aug. 30-31)

3rd Round (Friday & Saturday, Sept. 1-2)

Round of 16 (Sunday & Monday, Sept. 3-4)

Quarterfinals (Tuesday & Wednesday, Sept. 5-6)

Women’s Semifinals (Thursday, Sept. 7)

Men’s Semifinals (Friday, Sept. 8)

Women’s Final (Saturday, Sept. 9)

Men’s Final (Sunday, Sept. 10)

 Day 1 Highlights & Upset Alerts 

The biggest names are all healthy, but some of the top seeds suffered early exits on Day 1. Victims of first-round upsets included #4 Holger Rune and #8 Maria Sakkari. #6 Coco Gauff needed to rally from a first-set loss and a dispute with the umpire over her opponent’s slow play, but she earned a gritty comeback win to advance.

Women’s Singles

#6 C. Gauff def. L. Siegemund (3-6, 6-2, 6-4)

#4 E. Rybakina def. M. Kostyuk (6-2, 6-1)

#1 I. Swiatek def. R. Peterson (6-0, 6-1)

 R. Masarova upsets #8 M. Sakkari (6-4, 6-4)

#10 K. Muchova def. S. Sanders (6-4, 6-0)

Men’s Singles

#2 N. Djokovic def. A. Muller (6-0, 6-2, 6-3)

#7 S. Tsitsipas def. M. Raonic (6-2, 6-3, 6-4)

#5 C. Ruud def. E. Nava (7-6, 3-6, 6-4, 7-6)

 R. Carballes Baena upsets #4 H. Rune (64, 4-6, 6-3, 6-2)

 M. McDonald upsets #15 F. Auger-Aliassime (7-6, 4-6, 6-1, 6-4)

Today’s Schedule 

(Top Matches in Today’s Must-Watch List)

The final two-week tennis takeover of 2023 starts now!

Read More

ESPN: Coco Gauff Rallies Amid Issues With Opponent’s Delay Tactics

NBC Sports: Men’s 4-Seed Holger Rune Biggest Upset Victim From Day 1 at U.S. Open



9 Days: Preseason Rewind

Photo: Andy Lyons / Getty Images

What We Learned From the Preseason & Today’s Important NFL Deadline With 9 Days Until Kickoff

Nine days to NFL games that matter. But who’s counting? The NFL preseason does little to show what teams are really all about in the regular season. But a barometer of sorts still applies. Three teams ran the table in three preseason games (that’s right, only three). Only one was a playoff team last year. Two have unproven quarterbacks. Call me in October. But we did get a chance to see the progression of the three rookie QBs who will be starting come Week 1 (Young, Stroud and Richardson).

Among all the chatter, headlines, and constant NFL hoopla with nine days to go, this day marks an important checkpoint in the preseason build-up — teams must submit their final 53-man roster by 4:00 pm ET todaySo what does that mean, really? It means important trades must be completed (RB Jonathan Taylor), hurt feelings are inevitable (roster cuts), and another open-market tidal wave will fill today’s airwaves. I’m sure we’ll have plenty to talk about tomorrow. For now, here are the biggest takeaways from the preseason, as well as top headlines leading into the last big checkpoint. Nine to go…

Undefeated Teams This Preseason

Steelers (3-0), Commanders (3-0), Jaguars (3-0)

Rookie QB Preseason Stats

B. Young (CAR): 14/24, 129 yards, 1 TD

C. Stroud (HOU): 11/18, 89 yards, 1 TD, 1 INT

A. Richardson (IND): 13/29, 145 yards, 1 INT

Top NFL Headlines

Texans Officially Name C.J. Stroud QB1

49ers Have ‘Optimism’ Surrounding Nick Bosa’s Holdout

Eagles DE Derek Barnett Eyeing Trade Options

 NFL Roster Cuts Tracker

Team-by-Team Player Movement

Read More

CBS Sports: 10 Things We Learned in 2023 NFL Preseason

Sporting News: NFL All-Preseason Team: Biggest Standouts



Fall Frenzy: The Playoff Picture

Photo: Nuccio DiNuzzo / Getty Images

MLB Enters Final Month: Here’s Where They Stand, Plus HR Race, Awards Favorites & More

The end of August means baseball season is nearly 5/6 complete (roughly 83 percent). We should know who’s who by now, but a lot can change in a month. Four teams are essentially locked into the postseason barring a catastrophic collapse — Braves, Orioles, Rays, and Dodgers. There’s a struggle for AL and NL Central supremacy, but the Brewers and Twins are starting to pull away. Wild Card races should be interesting down the stretch, too. Only 12 teams reach October (postseason), but 23 teams are still mathematically “alive” in our eyes, even the Yankees, somehow. Let’s prep for the final month of baseball with a look at the playoff picture:

MLB Playoff Picture

American League

AL East: Orioles (82-49)

AL West: Mariners (75-56)

AL Central: Twins (69-63)

Wild Card: Rays (80-52)

Wild Card: Rangers (74-57)

Wild Card: Astros (75-58)

In the Hunt: Blue Jays (72-60), Red Sox (69-63), Yankees (63-68), Angels (63-69) & Guardians (62-70)

National League

NL East: Braves (85-45)

NL West: Dodgers (81-49)

NL Central: Brewers (74-57)

Wild Card: Phillies (73-58)

Wild Card: Cubs (69-62)

Wild Card: Diamondbacks (69-63)

In the Hunt: Giants (68-63), Reds (68-65), Marlins (66-65), Padres (62-70), Nationals (61-71) & Mets (60-72)

Home Run Race

1. Shohei Ohtani (LAA): 44 HRs

2. Matt Olson (ATL): 43 HRs

3. Pete Alonso (NYM): 39 HRs

4. Kyle Schwarber (PHI): 36 HRs

T5. Mookie Betts (LAD): 35 HRs

T5. Jorge Soler (MIA): 35 HRs

Award Favorites

  • NL MVP: Ronald Acuna Jr. (ATL), Mookie Betts (LAD), Freddie Freeman (LAD)
  • AL MVP: Shohei Ohtani (LAA), Corey Seager (TEX), Kyle Tucker (HOU)
  • NL Cy Young: Zac Gallen (ARI), Blake Snell (SD), Spencer Strider (ATL)
  • AL Cy Young: Gerrit Cole (NYY), Luis Castillo (SEA), Kevin Gausman (TOR)

Read More

MLB: 5 Series to Watch to Close Out August

CBS Sports: MLB Power Rankings: Brewers, Mariners Surging at Right Time

FOX Sports: MLB Power Rankings: Mariners End 20-Year Drought Atop AL West



Team USA Clicking at World Cup

Photo: Anadolu Agency / Getty Images

USA Thrashes Greece (109-81) to Win Group Stage (2-0), Advance to 2nd Round

Make it 2-0 for Team USA! The FIBA World Cup tipped off from Asia over the weekend with group play, and the USA is off to a hot start. They handled New Zealand (99-72) in Game 1 before trouncing Greece (109-81) on Monday morning. It’s not the “Dream Team” of the past, consisting of the NBA’s highest-profile stars, but a young group of players with a heightened competitiveness is still exciting. Paolo Banchero led the way in Game 1 with 21 points in a big burst, but Anthony Edwards and Austin Reaves have been the stars of the show. Both ANT (27 points) and AR15 (27 points) have been great for Team USA. The roster runs 12-deep with 11 players getting relatively even minutes in the early stages. We’ll see if head coach Steve Kerr shifts the gameplan in tighter competitions. Here’s a look at the lineup and production through two contests.

 Team USA Stat Leaders (2 Games)

F Paolo Banchero: 29 points, 7 rebs (33 min)

G Austin Reaves: 27 pts, 7 rebs, 12 asts (39 min)

G Anthony Edwards: 27 pts, 9 rebs, 6 asts (44 min)

G Jalen Brunson: 23 pts, 7 rebs, 6 asts (43 min)

F Jaren Jackson Jr.: 21 pts, 7 rebs (33 min)

G Tyrese Haliburton: 19 pts, 6 rebs, 6 asts (38 min)

Rest of Team USA Roster: F Mikal Bridges, F Brandon Ingram, G Josh Hart, G Cameron Johnson, F Bobby Portis, F Walker Kessler

Watch: Team USA Cruises Past Greece (109-81)

Group C Standings

1. 🇺🇸 USA (2-0) | +55 PD | 4 Points

2. 🇬🇷 Greece (1-1) | -7 PD | 3 Points

3. 🇳🇿 New Zealand (1-1) | -19 PD | 3 Points

4. 🇯🇴 Jordan (0-2) | -29 PD | 2 Points

Final Group Stage Game

USA vs. Jordan (Wed. 4:40 am ET)

*Team USA Advances to 2nd Round Regardless of W/L

Read More

B/R: Lakers’ Austin Reaves Getting Fan Hype as Team USA Routs Greece

SI: Luka Doncic (34-10-6) ‘Electric’ in Slovenia’s Blowout Over Georgia




Jose Altuve Records 1st Cycle for Astros in 10 Years

Yelich & Canha Go Yard as Brewers Beat Cubs for 9th Straight (6-2)

Royce Lewis Hits 2nd Grand Slams in 2 Games for Twins (10-6)

Julio Rodriguez Homers in 3rd Straight, Mariners Shut Out A’s (7-0)

Ronald Acuna Jr. Achieves 60-Steal Season in Braves Win, Gets Rushed by Fans in Colorado (14-4)


Liberty Beat Aces (94-85) for 3rd Time in 3 Weeks

Sabrina Ionescu Scores Game-High 25 on Five 3s





The Must-Watch List

U.S. Open (Round 1)

W: #5 O. Jabeur vs. M. Osorio Serrano (11:00 am ET)

W: #3 J. Pegula vs. C. Giorgi (2:00 pm ET)

W: #2 A. Sabalenka vs. M. Zanevska (9:00 pm ET)

M: #3 D. Medvedev vs. A. Balazs (Noon ET)

M: #6 J. Sinner vs. Y. Hanfmann (7:00 pm ET)

M: #1 C. Alcaraz vs. D. Koepfer (8:15 pm ET)


Angels at Phillies (6:40 pm ET)

Rays at Marlins (6:40 pm ET)

Astros at Red Sox (7:10 pm ET)

Rangers at Mets (7:10 pm ET)

Guardians at Twins (7:40 pm ET)

Brewers at Cubs (8:05 pm ET)

Reds at Giants (9:45 pm ET)


Team USA Ryder Cup Selections (10:00 am ET)

FIBA World Cup

Team USA vs. Jordan (Wed. 4:40 am ET)

Download The Sportsletter’s Must-Watch Calendar