Yahoo Sports AM: Five days left

👋 Good morning! I'm 20 days into my goal of playing basketball for 100 straight days. Add me on Instagram to follow along.

— Kendall Baker (email), Jeff Tracy (email)

Let's sports...


🏀 Stewie wins MVP: Breanna Stewart won an incredibly close race for WNBA MVP. Hours later, New York and Vegas won playoff games to inch closer to the Finals.

🏈 Jets QB news: The Jets signed Trevor Siemian as questions swirl around Zach Wilson, and Colin Kaepernick wrote a letter asking the team to consider signing him to the practice squad.

🏈 Ohio scandal: An Ohio high school football coach has resigned after his players repeatedly used "Nazi" as a playcall against a team from a predominantly Jewish town.

🏀 WNBA expansion: The Warriors are close to bringing a WNBA franchise to the Bay Area, per multiple reports.


MLB had an eventful Tuesday, with the Phillies clinching the playoffs, the Brewers winning the division and plenty more teams jockeying for postseason position.

Key games:

Phillies 3, Pirates 2: The reigning NL champs won on a walk-off to secure a postseason berth and win their sixth straight game.

Mariners 6, Astros 2: Seattle won at home to move within a half-game of Houston for the third wild card spot (and they hold the tiebreaker).

Braves 7, Cubs 6: Chicago blew a 6-0 lead to fall a game behind Arizona for the second wild card spot.

Diamondbacks 15, White Sox 4: Arizona came back from 4-1 down to pick up a game on the Cubs.

Cardinals 4, Brewers 1: Milwaukee didn't win but still had reason to celebrate. The Cubbies' loss helped them clinch the NL Central.

Close races:

AL East: The Orioles and Rays both won, so Baltimore remains 2.5 games ahead.

AL Wild Card: The Blue Jays lost to the Yankees to stay 1.5 games ahead of the Astros for the second wild card.

AL West: The Rangers lost to the Angels to stay 2.5 games ahead of the Astros and 3 games ahead of the Mariners.

NL Wild Card: The Marlins (game postponed) are just 0.5 games back of the Cubs for the third spot. The Reds beat the Guardians to move within 1.5 games of the Cubs.

If the season ended today… Here's who would be playing in the Wild Card Series (best-of-three) and who would earn byes to the Division Series (best-of-five).

AL Wild Card (starts Oct. 3): No. 6 Astros at No. 3 Twins and No. 5 Blue Jays at No. 4 Rays

NL Wild Card (Oct. 3): No. 6 Cubs at No. 3 Brewers and No. 5 Diamondbacks at No. 4 Phillies

ALDS (Oct. 7): Rays or Blue Jays at No. 1 Orioles and Twins or Astros at No. 2 Rangers

NLDS (Oct. 7): Phillies or Diamondbacks at No. 1 Braves and Brewers or Cubs at No. 2 Dodgers

Quick links:

CFP DEBATE: 6+6 OR 5+7?

The College Football Playoff Management Committee is in Rosemont, Illinois, this week to discuss, among other things, potential changes to the expanded playoff model.

Where it stands: A 12-team concept was approved last year and is set to debut in 2024. But in the wake of the Pac-12's implosion and the ensuing realignment, officials are considering adjustments, Yahoo Sports' Ross Dellenger reports.

The approved model is described as a 6+6 model, as it grants automatic qualifiers to the six highest-ranked conference champions and at-large bids to the next six highest-ranked teams.

Commissioners emerged from their last meeting in Dallas four weeks ago with an alignment around a 5+7 model, which would eliminate an automatic qualifying spot and add an at-large berth.

What the big guys are saying: "We need to really make a decision this fall," ACC commissioner Jim Phillips told Yahoo Sports.

"I do believe there has to be some reward for being a conference champion. That needs to be placed in whatever model we decide, whether that’s 6+6 or 5+7."

"Maybe it's the same format that we've agreed upon … Maybe it's the top five conferences or top five ranked teams or the champions of the four conferences and best Group of Five."

What the little guys are saying: In an interview last month, American Athletic Conference commissioner Mike Aresco told Yahoo Sports that he'd "fight" any adjustment from the 6+6.

"Our 65 in our grouping have to have access," Aresco said of the Group of Five, a term he avoids using.

"You want this to be a national tournament. I'd like to keep it at six [automatic qualifiers], but I understand that you have to have a discussion."

Of note: Any changes must be unanimously approved by the CFP Management Committee, which is made up of the 10 FBS conference commissioners plus Notre Dame AD Jack Swarbrick.

Read Ross' full report.


Each week, we'll be going "Behind the Lens" with Getty Images to get the backstory on the most spectacular photographs in sports.

This week's photo: A runner makes her way through a tunnel while competing in the Ironman 70.3 New York Triathlon in Massapequa, New York.

Photographer: Al Bello

Date: September 23

Behind the lens: Here's Al on the technique he used to get this shot (ever heard of a CTO Gel?). Plus, he gives us a glimpse of what it's like to photograph an Ironman Triathlon.

My goal with this photo was to light the tunnel with an amber color and hopefully achieve an interesting lighting effect. To do that, I placed a photographic strobe light with a CTO Gel* on it against the wall and stood about 30 feet away.

I waited until a runner crossed in the path of the strobe, then used a remote to fire the strobe and snap a shot when I pressed the shutter button on my camera.

A day in the life: I hardly ever stop moving during an Ironman Triathlon. The day started at 4am and I began in the ocean, photographing the first leg of the race. Then I headed out onto the bike course (with a vehicle), then the running course, then the finish line. We battled 45 mph winds and sideways rains because of Hurricane Ophelia, so the conditions were difficult.

*What's a CTO Gel? CTO stands for "color temperature orange" and the gel is made of a polycarbonate or polyester material. It's basically a way to warm up the image and change the color temperature of the strobe light you're using.


The 44th Ryder Cup starts in two days at Marco Simone Golf Club, which offers stunning views of the Roman countryside and the 1,000-year-old castle for which the course was named, Jeff writes.

The course will play to a par of 71 and a length of 7,181 yards this week, including three drivable par fours like the 352-yard 16th, pictured above.

The 18th hole is a 597-yard behemoth, the longest closing par 5 in Ryder Cup history. That should provide plenty of drama for matches that come down to the final hole.

Take a tour:Every hole at Marco Simone Golf Club


The Dolphins' historic victory vaulted them into the top five of this week's NFL power rankings, courtesy of Yahoo Sports' Frank Schwab, Jeff writes.

Where it stands: Three teams have no losses (49ers, Eagles, Dolphins), while four have no wins (Vikings, Panthers, Broncos, Bears). The Colts were this week's biggest riser after beating Baltimore (up eight), while the Jaguars were the biggest faller after losing to Houston (down 10).

49ers: 3-0 (–)

Eagles: 3-0 (–)

Chiefs: 2-1 (up 1)

Bills: 2-1 (up 1)

Dolphins: 3-0 (up 1)

Cowboys: 2-1 (down 3)

Lions: 2-1 (up 1)

Browns: 2-1 (up 2)

Ravens: 2-1 (down 2)

Seahawks: 2-1 (up 3)

Bengals: 1-2 (up 1)

Packers: 2-1 (up 2)

Saints: 2-1 (down 4)

Steelers: 2-1 (up 1)

Falcons: 2-1 (up 1)

Commanders: 2-1 (up 1)

Patriots: 1-2 (up 3)

Chargers: 1-2 (up 3)

Colts: 2-1 (up 8)

Buccaneers: 2-1 (down 2)

Jaguars: 1-2 (down 10)

Jets: 1-2 (–)

Rams: 1-2 (up 2)

Vikings: 0-3 (down 1)

Titans: 1-2 (down 6)

Giants: 1-2 (down 2)

Texans: 1-2 (up 3)

Cardinals: 1-2 (up 3)

Raiders: 1-2 (down 3)

Panthers: 0-3 (down 1)

Broncos: 0-3 (down 3)

Bears: 0-3 (–)

Coming up: Sunday features two clashes between top-10 teams that also happen to be division rivals: Dolphins at Bills and Ravens at Browns.


93 years ago today, Bobby Jones defeated Eugene Homans in the US Amateur Championship at Merion Golf Club in Pennsylvania to secure the only calendar Grand Slam in golf history, Jeff writes.

A one-of-a-kind feat: Jones won all four majors* (US Open, Open Championship, British Amateur, US Amateur) that year, but there was no term yet for such a feat because no one thought it was possible. The Atlanta Journal's O.B. Keeler dubbed it the "Grand Slam," borrowing a term from bridge.

More on this day:

🥇 1988: Canadian sprinter Ben Johnson's 100m victory at the Seoul Olympics was stripped after testing positive for steroids, giving American Carl Lewis the gold and then-world record (9.92 seconds).

⚾️ 2008: Greg Maddux won the final start of his career for his 355th victory, the eighth-most in MLB history.

*Only five men have captured the modern career Grand Slam, winning the Masters, Open Championship, US Open and PGA Championship at any point in their careers: Gene Sarazen, Ben Hogan, Gary Player, Jack Nicklaus and Tiger Woods.


Lionel Messi and Inter Miami* host the Houston Dynamo tonight (8:30pm ET, CBSSN) in the U.S. Open Cup Final.

How we got here: The U.S. Open Cup is America's version of the FA Cup, pitting teams from all levels against each other. This year's edition began in February, featuring 99 clubs from 14 leagues.

More to watch:

⚾️ MLB:15 games … All 30 teams are in action with five days left in the season.

⚽️ MLS:Philadelphia vs. Dallas (7:30pm, Apple TV); Colorado vs. Vancouver (9:30pm, Apple TV) … Both games are free on MLS Season Pass.

🏒 NHL preseason:Sabres at Maple Leafs (6:30pm, NHL); Kings at Golden Knights (10pm, NHL)

⛳️ Ryder Cup:Celebrity All-Star Match (6:30am, Peacock) … Participants include Novak Djokovic, Gareth Bale and Carlos Sainz.

*Of note: Messi is a game-time decision as he recovers from what his coach Tata Martino previously described as "fatigue."


Orioles legend Brooks Robinsonpassed away on Tuesday at age 86.

Question: Robinson spent 23 seasons with the O's, tied for the longest tenure with a team in MLB history. Who is he tied with?

A. Derek Jeter (Yankees)

B. Carl Yastrzemski (Red Sox)

C. Tony Gwynn (Padres)

D. Stan Musial (Cardinals)

Answer at the bottom.


The funniest NIL deal yet comes courtesy of the Iowa Pork Producers Association.

The IPPA signed four Iowa State football players: Myles Purchase, Tyler Moore, Tommy Hamann and Caleb Bacon.

When lined up, their last names combine to say "Purchase Moore Hamann Bacon," a perfect (and viral) promo for National Pork Month in October.

Even vegetarians have to admit, that’s pretty creative.


Trivia answer: Carl Yastrzemski (Red Sox)

Thanks for reading today's edition! Email me with questions or comments. Subscribe for free here.

Comments on this article

mobile apps

Everything you love about and more! Tap on any of the buttons below to download our app.

amazon alexa

Enable our Skill today to listen live at home on your Alexa Devices!