The Rundown for August 17, 2021

CORONAVIRUS UPDATES… The number of confirmed coronavirus cases in the U.S. has reached 36,885,670 and the nation’s death toll stands at 622,295, according to figures released last night by Johns Hopkins University. Over the past 28 days, there have been 2,598,793 new cases and 12,707 deaths… A report released yesterday by the American Academy of Pediatrics and the Children’s Hospital Association said more than 121,000 new COVID-19 cases were reported among kids last week. Children accounted for 18 percent of all cases reported last week, a three-percent rise over the preceding week. Pediatric COVID-19-related hospital admissions are now as high as they have been at any point of the pandemic, the report noted.

BIDEN ADDRESSES NATION ON AFGHANISTAN… President Joe Biden accepted responsibility for the U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan and defended his decision amid heavy criticism. During a national address, Biden conceded the that pullout was messy by said “there was never a good time to withdraw U.S. forces.” The Taliban declared victory in the 20-year-old war on Sunday after Afghan President Ashraf Ghani fled and his government collapsed. Biden said, “American troops cannot and should not be fighting in a war and dying in a war that Afghan forces are not willing to fight for themselves.”

INTERIOR DEPARTMENT APPEALS LEASE DECISION… The Interior Department is appealing a federal judge’s order that blocked the suspension of new oil and gas leases on federal land and waters. A Louisiana-based federal judge sided with Louisiana’s attorney general and officials in 12 other states in lifting the suspension after plaintiffs argued that the administration bypassed comment periods and other bureaucratic steps required before such delays can be undertaken and the moratorium would cost the states money and jobs. The moratorium took effect after Biden signed executive orders on January 27 to fight climate change.

COLORADO RIVER SYSTEM LACKS WATER… The federal government has declared a shortage of water on the Colorado River system for the first time in history and is imposing mandatory water cuts at Lake Mead. The shortage only affects lower basin states such as California, Nevada and Arizona but shortages in the upper basin could appear by next year. Lake Mead is currently at less than half capacity due to drought.

FRED ARRIVES… Tropical Storm Fred arrived off the Gulf of Mexico yesterday afternoon and struck the eastern Florida Panhandle with maximum sustained winds of 65 miles per hour before moving into southeast Alabama. The storm is expected to dissipate tomorrow morning. Florida had at least been preparing for landfall since the previous week when Governor Ron DeSantis declared a state of emergency for 23 of Florida’s 67 counties. More than 36,000 customers in Florida were without power last night.

ENTERTAINMENT
BOB DYAN ACCUSED OF SEXUAL ASSAULT
… Bob Dylan is the target of a lawsuit filed by a woman who claims that he drugged and sexually assaulted her in 1965 when she was 12 years old. The woman, identified only as J.C., claims in her civil lawsuit filed Friday in New York City that Dylan “groomed” her for child sexual abuse by providing her with drugs and alcohol during a six-week period during 1965 in his room at the Chelsea Hotel in New York’s Greenwich Village. Lawyers representing the singer-songwriter vowed to disprove the allegations.

COUNTRY MUSIC HALL OF FAME CLASS… Ray Charles and The Judds headline this year’s class of entrants to the Country Music Hall of Fame. An induction ceremony is being scheduled for next year. Charles, who died in 2004, made his mark in R&B but had grown up listening to the Grand Ole Opry and his contributions to country music included recordings with Willie Nelson, Merle Haggard and Johnny Cash, among others. The Judds, a mother-daughter duo, released six studio albums and an EP between 1984 and 1991 and won five Grammy Awards. Drummer Eddie Bayers and steel player Pete Drake are being inducted in the recording musician category.

SPORTS
NATIONAL LEAGUE
CINCINNATI 14 – Chi. Cubs 5
… Jonathan India opened the scoring with a two-run homer in the bottom of the fourth inning and added a bases-clearing double during an eight-run seventh as the Reds clobbered the Cubs. Tucker Barnhart hit a two-run homer and lifted a sacrifice fly. Aristides Aquino also knocked in three runs.

Atlanta 12 – MIAMI 2… The Braves used a seven-run top of the fourth inning to put away the Marlins. Freddie Freeman belted a three-run homer and Adam Duval homered with a runner aboard to power the uprising. Ozzie Albies had three hits and drive in three runs. Touki Toussaint (2-2) allowed just two runs on three hits over 6-1/3 innings.

COLORADO 6 – San Diego 5… C.J. Cron’s one-out solo homer in the bottom of the ninth inning lifted the Rockies over the Padres after they blew a three run lead in the top half. Connor Joe homered to lead off the first and Charlie Blackmon smacked a two-run shot to cap a three-run third.

SAN FRANCISCO 7 – N.Y. Mets 5… Brandon Belt and Kris Bryant hit back-to-back homers and Brandon Crawford capped a four-hit night with an RBI triple during a three-run bottom of the seventh inning that carried the Giants past the Mets. Bryant also homered with a runner aboard in the fifth.

L.A. DODGERS 2 – Pittsburgh 1… Billy McKinney homered in the bottom of the seventh inning to tie the game and Max Muncy connected for a decisive homer in the eighth as the Dodgers squeaked past the Pirates for their fourth straight win.

AMERICAN LEAGUE
N.Y. YANKEES 2 – L.A. Angels 1
… Joey Gallo gave the Yankees a lead with a two-run homer in the bottom of the first inning and they hung on to edge the Angels. Gerrit Cole (11-6) surrendered just a run on two hits over 5-2/3 innings and four relievers slammed the door.

TAMPA BAY 9 – Baltimore 2… Brandon Lowe homered twice and drove in three runs to lead the Rays in their romp over the Orioles. Kevin Kiermaier, Brett Phillips and Mike Brosseau hit bases-empty homers for Tampa Bay.

KANSAS CITY 7 – Houston 6… Salvador Perez lined a tie-breaking two-run singled in the bottom of the eighth inning and the Royals held off the Astros. Ryan O’Hearn drove in two runs with a single and a double.

MINNESOTA 5 – Cleveland 4 (10 innings)… Jorge Polanco doubled home Max Kepler with the winning run in the bottom of the 10th inning as the Twins outlasted the Indians. Kepler homered for Minnesota.

CHI. WHITE SOX 5 – Oakland 2… The White Sox cruised past the Athletics after spotting them an early two-run lead. Eloy Jimenez singled home a tie-breaking run in the bottom of the fifth inning. Luis Robert homered in the eighth.

TODAY’S MLB SCHEDULE
NATIONAL LEAGUE
Atlanta (Huascar Ynoa, 4-2) is at Miami (Sandy Alcantara, 7-10)…
Cincinnati (Vladimir Gutierrez, 8-3) hosts the Chi. Cubs (Kyle Hendricks, 13-5)…
Milwaukee (Corbin Burnes, 7-4) is at St. Louis (Adam Wainwright, 11-6)…
Colorado (German Marquez, 10-9) hosts San Diego (TBA)…
Philadelphia (Kyle Gibson, 8-4) is at Arizona (TBA)…
San Francisco (Logan Webb, 6-3) hosts the N.Y. Mets (Marcus Stroman, 8-11)…
Pittsburgh (Wil Crowe, 3-7) is at the L.A. Dodgers (David Price, 4-1)

AMERICAN LEAGUE
Boston (Nathan Eovaldi, 10-7; TBA) is at the N.Y. Yankees (Luis Gil, 1-0; Jordan Montgomery, 4-5) for a doubleheader…
Detroit (Casey Mize, 6-6) hosts the L.A. Angels (Dylan Bundy, 2-9)…
Baltimore (John Means, 5-4) is at Tampa Bay (Drew Rasmussen, 1-0)…
Texas (Spencer Howard, 0-3) hosts Seattle (Tyler Anderson, 5-8)…
Cleveland (Eli Morgan, 1-5) is at Minnesota (Bailey Ober, 1-1)…
Kansas City (Daniel Lynch, 2-3) hosts Houston (Framber Valdez, 8-3)…
Oakland (Chris Bassitt, 12-3) is at the Chi. White Sox (Reynaldo Lopez, 1-0)

INTERLEAGUE
Toronto (Alek Manoah, 5-1) is at Washington (Erick Fedde, 4-8)

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