CORONAVIRUS UPDATES… The number of confirmed coronavirus cases in the U.S. has reached 34,078,832 and the nation’s death toll stands at 609,018, according to figures released last night by Johns Hopkins University… U.S. Surgeon General Dr. Vivek Murthy shared his concern for what lies ahead in the coronavirus fight. During an appearance on CNN’s “State of the Union,” Murthy noted that the highly-contagious Delta variant has sparked an increasing number of cases in every state. Cases in the U.S. increased last week by 17,000 nationwide over a 14-day period for the first time since late fall. Meanwhile, former Food and Drug Administration Commissioner Dr. Scott Gottlieb appeared on CBS’ “Face the Nation” and warned Americans who are unvaccinated and become infected with the Delta variant, that the virus will be the “most serious” they get in their lifetime. On Friday, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Director Rochelle Walensky said “this is becoming a pandemic of the unvaccinated,” as nearly all people who are hospitalized with COVID-19 have not been inoculated.
SENATORS PRESS ON WITH INFRASTRUCTURE BILL… Republican Senator Rob Portman of Ohio said yesterday that senators have removed beefed-up IRS enforcement from proposed ways to pay for the $1.2 trillion bipartisan infrastructure bill. The proposal had faced stiff opposition among GOP lawmakers. Portman said on CNN’s “State of the Union” that lawmakers are “still negotiating” several “final details with the White House” and that he and other lawmakers from both parties would be holding additional talks later in the day. Senate Democrats hope to complete the bill before their monthlong August recess.
FIRES SPREAD IN THE WEST… Dry conditions and heavy winds continue to fan wildfires in the West. The Bootleg Fire in southern Oregon grew to more than 476 square miles and prompted expanded evacuations in rural areas. The blaze, which was 22-percent contained, has burned at least 67 homes and 100 outbuildings while threatening thousands more. The Tamarack Fire in Northern California spread across more than 18,000 acres yesterday and spawned a terrifying-sounding pyrocumulus cloud. Thunderstorms were on the forecast, but they are unlikely to bring enough rain to help firefighting efforts.
28 PATIENTS RELEASED AFTER CHEMICAL EXPOSURE TREATMENT… Authorities in Spring, Texas, said 28 people were released yesterday after being exposed to toxic chemicals at a water park. First responders decontaminated 86 people following the exposure in a children’s pool area at Six Flags Hurricane Harbor Splashtown on Saturday afternoon. Officials said 31 people were transported to local hospitals. Experts say it appears people were sickened by poorly-mixed hypochlorite solution and sulfuric acid, which are used to keep water clean at commercial facilities.
BEAR-SPRAY INCIDENT LEAVES DOZENS INJURED… Authorities in Florida are on lookout for the man who discharged bear spray in a Bath and Body Works store in Doral, Florida, on Saturday night. The incident left as many as 35 people injured, including the store’s manager, who was sprayed in the face. Police say the suspect also robbed the store of two bags of candles before getting in a yellow cab and fleeing.
WEEKEND BOX OFFICE… “Space Jam: A New Legacy” took in $31.6 million to open atop the weekend box office. Last week’s champ, “Black Widow,” slipped to second place with $26.2 million. “Escape Room: Tournament of Champions” brought in $8.8 million to open in third place. “F9: The Fast Saga” dropped to fourth place with $7.6 million. “The Boss Baby: Family Business” capped the top five with $4.7 million.
OLIVIA RODRIGO TOPS ALBUM CHART… Olivia Rodrigo’s “Sour” sold 83,000 copies to top the Billboard 200 album chart for the fourth time. Doja Cat’s “Planet Her” finished second for the third straight week with 61,000 units sold. Morgan Wallen’s “Dangerous: The Double Album” rose into third place on sales of 44,000 copies. Lil Baby and Lil Durk’s “The Voice of the Heroes” dropped to fourth place after selling 42,000 units. Polo G’s “Hall of Fame” finished fifth with 37,000 copies sold.
N.Y. Mets 7 – PITTSBURGH 6… The Mets powered their way past the Pirates after spotting them a six-run first-inning lead. Michael Conforto drilled a go-ahead two-run homer in the top of the ninth inning. Travis Blankenhorn came through with a pinch-hit three-run homer in the fourth.
San Diego 10 – WASHINGTON 4… The Padres pounded the Nationals in the continuation of a game suspended by gunfire outside Nationals Park on Saturday night. Fernando Tatis went 4-for-5 with a pair of run-scoring singles.
WASHINGTON 8 – San Diego 7… Alcides Escobar singled home Tres Barrera with the winning run in the bottom of the ninth inning to give the Nationals a hard-fought win over the Padres. Escobar and Juan Soto hit solo homers in the eighth.
PHILADELPHIA 4 – Miami 2 (10 innings)… J.T. Realmuto homered with a runner aboard in the bottom of the 10th inning to give the Phillies a walkoff win over the Marlins in the doubleheader opener. Andrew McCutchen lifted a sacrifice fly and Rhys Hoskins doubled home a run in the first.
PHILADELPHIA 7 – Miami 4… The Phillies came from two runs down to get past the Marlins and complete a sweep of the twinbill. Andrew McCutchen homered and knocked in a second run. J.T. Realmuto went 3-for-5 with two RBI singles.
Milwaukee 8 – Cincinnati 0… Brewers starter Corbin Burnes (5-4) held the Reds to five hits and struck out 12 over 8-1/3 innings. Willy Adames hit a two-run homer. Christian Yelich added a solo shot. Tyrone Taylor and Jackie Bradley Jr. each had two hits and two RBIs.
ST. LOUIS 2 – San Francisco 1… Harrison Bader’s single in the bottom of the seventh inning scored Jose Rondon with what proved to be the decisive run as the Cardinals clipped the Giants. Paul DeJong homered to lead off the third for St. Louis.
COLORADO 6 – L.A. Dodgers 5 (10 innings)… The Rockies came from behind twice in their final two at-bats to upend the Dodgers. Chris Owings’ run-scoring single in the bottom of the ninth inning forced an extra inning. Trevor Story lifted a sacrifice fly and Charlie Blackman smacked a game-winning solo homer in the 10th.
ARIZONA 6 – Chi. Cubs 4… Eduardo Escobar’s two-run homer win the bottom of the eighth inning sent the Diamondbacks past the Cubs. Merrill Kelly (6-7) gave up four runs on six hits over eight innings.
TORONTO 5 – Texas 0 (7 innings)… Hyun Jin Ryu (9-5) tossed a complete-game three-hitter in shutting out the Rangers in the doubleheader opener. Danny Jansen homered with the bases empty for Toronto. Lourdes Gurriel Jr. had a couple of hits and drove in a run.
TORONTO 10 – Texas 0… The Blue Jays scored all 10 runs in their first two at-bats and never looked back in walloping the Rangers for back-to-back shutouts in the twinbill. Lourdes Gurriel, Jr., unloaded a grand slam to highlight a six-run bottom of the first inning. Vladimir Guerrero, Jr., George Springer and Randal Grichuk went deep in the second. Steven Matz (8-4) pitched three-hit ball over five innings.
DETROIT 7 – Minnesota 0… Wily Peralta (3-1) limited the Twins to four hits over seven innings and got help from two relievers in the shutout. Jonathan Schoop and Jeimer Candelario hit two-run homers for Detroit. Candelario also doubled home a run.
Baltimore 5 – KANSAS CITY 0… Matt Harvey pitched three-hit ball over six innings and got help from four relievers in the blanking of the Royals. Ramon Urias had a couple of hits, including a two-run single, for the Orioles.
CHI. WHITE SOX 4 – Houston 0… Carlos Rodon allowed just one hit and fanned 10 over seven innings before two relievers preserved the shutout of the Astros. Yoan Moncada and Tim Anderson hit solo homers for Chicago.
Cleveland 4 – OAKLAND 2… Daniel Johnson connected for a tie-breaking solo homer with two outs in the top of the seventh inning and Bradley Zimmer singled home a run in the ninth as the Indians put away the Athletics. Zach Plesac (5-3) surrendered two runs on four hits over six innings.
Seattle 7 – L.A. ANGELS 4… Ty France went 3-for-4 with a three-run homer in leading the Mariners past the Angels. Luis Torrens also went deep. Logan Gilbert (4-2) allowed two runs on four hits over 5-1/3 innings.
N.Y. YANKEES 9 – Boston 1… The Yankees got two-run homers from Rougned Odor and Ryan LaMarre in cruising past the Red Sox. Gleyber Torres also went deep. Jameson Taillon (5-4) held Boston to four hits over 5-1/3 scoreless innings.
Tampa Bay 7 – ATLANTA 5… The Rays came from behind twice on their way past the Braves. Yandy Diaz slugged a two-run homer. Wander Franco added a solo shot. Austin Meadows lifted two scoring fly balls.
TODAY’S MLB SCHEDULE…
Miami (TBA) is at Washington (TBA)…
Cincinnati (Vladimir Gutierrez, 4-3) hosts the N.Y. Mets (Jerad Eickhoff, 0-1)…
San Diego (Yu Darvish, 7-3) is at Atlanta (TBA)…
St. Louis (Jake Woodford, 1-1) hosts the Chi Cubs (Alec Mills, 4-2)…
Pittsburgh (Chase De Jong, 1-3) is at Arizona (Caleb Smith, 2-6)…
the L.A. Dodgers (Tony Gonsolin, 1-0) host San Francisco (Kevin Gausman, 9-3)
Minnesota (Griffin Jax, 1-1; Jose Berrios, 7-3) is at the Chi. White Sox (Lance Lynn, 9-3; TBA) or a doubleheader…
Toronto (Ross Stripling, 3-5) hosts Boston (Nick Pivetta 7-4) in Buffalo…
Baltimore (Spenser Watkins, 1-0) is at Tampa Bay (Ryan Yarbrough, 6-3)…
Detroit (Casey Mize, 5-5) hosts Texas (Kyle Gibson, 6-1)…
Cleveland (J.C. Mejia, 1-4) is at Houston (Zack Greinke, 8-3)…
Oakland (Cole Irvin, 6-8) hosts the L.A. Angels (Shohei Ohtani, 4-1)
COLLIN MORIKAWA WINS THE OPEN… Collin Morikawa closed The Open with 31 consecutive bogey-free holes at Royal St. George’s to become the first player to capture two different majors on the first attempt. He captured the PGA Championship just 11 months earlier. The 24-year-old Morikawa’s 15-under 265 was a 72-hole record in 15 Opens at Royal St. George’s. Jordan Spieth finished two strokes back. Jon Rahm and Louis Oooshthuizen finished in a third-place tie at 11-under.