The Rundown for August 20, 2021

CORONAVIRUS UPDATES… The number of confirmed coronavirus cases in the U.S. has reached 37,293,969 and the nation’s death toll stands at 625,166, according to figures released last night by Johns Hopkins University. Over the past 28 days, there have been 2,928,863 new cases and 14,484 deaths… The Texas Supreme Court yesterday denied a petition from Governor Greg Abbott and Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton that sought to reinstate a ban on mask mandates in schools. The court cited a provision that requires cases be brought before an appellate court before they are decided by the state’s Supreme Court “unless there is a compelling reason not to do so.” The Texas Education Agency also said Thursday that it would not enforce Abbott’s mask mandate ban in public schools, citing the ongoing legal battles.

BIDEN MAY EXTEND TROOPS IN AFGHANISTAN… President Joe Biden said yesterday that a small group of American security forces might remain in Afghanistan beyond his August 31 withdrawal deadline to make sure all American citizens are safely out of the country. Biden told ABC News’ George Stephanopoulos that he’s committed to get all citizens out and do everything possible for Afghan civilians who aided the U.S. military. Meanwhile, the Wall Street Journal reported that a State Department memo sent last month from the U.S. Embassy in Afghanistan warned of an impending fall of Kabul as the U.S. exited the country. The July 13 memo was sent to Secretary of State Antony Blinken and another State leader by 20 embassy officials.

JUDGE BLOCKS BIDEN IMMIGRATION RULES… A federal judge yesterday blocked a set of Biden administration’s immigration rules that limited whom deportation agents should detain and deport from the country. U.S. District Court Judge Drew Tipton prohibited federal officials from enforcing two directives that instructed Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents to focus on arresting recent border-crossers, as well as immigrants deemed to threaten public safety or national security. Under the new so-called “enforcement priorities,” ICE agents were required to obtain supervisory approval before arresting immigrants living in the U.S. without legal permission who did not fall within the three specified categories.

STANDOFF NEAR CAPITOL… A fervent supporter of former President Donald Trump who threatened Democrats online was arrested following an hours-long standoff near the U.S. Capitol yesterday. 49-year-old Floyd Ray Roseberry of Grover, North Carolina, warned authorities that he had an explosive device and demanded to talk to Joe Biden. Multiple buildings in the area were evacuated as authorities responded to an “active bomb threat investigation.” No bomb was found in Roseberry’s truck but that he did possess suspected bomb-making material.

3 ALBUQUERQUE OFFICERS SHOT… Three police officers were shot in Albuquerque, New Mexico, yesterday after responding to an armed robbery. One of the officers was reported to be in critical condition. A fourth officer was injured by shrapnel or shattered glass. Police arrested two suspects in the shootings by early yesterday afternoon.

ENTERTAINMENT
BRITNEY SPEARS UNDER INVESTIGATION FOR ASSAULT
… Britney Spears is under investigation for alleged battery stemming from an altercation with an employee. According to the Ventura County Sheriff’s Office, an employee filed a complaint after allegedly being struck by Spears during a dispute on Monday morning. The employee was not injured. The sheriff’s office will forward their findings to the Ventura County District Attorney’s Office for consideration of misdemeanor charges.

JAPANESE ACTOR SONNY CHIBA DIES… Japanese actor Sonny Chiba, whose martial arts skills were featured in in more than 100 films, died in a Tokyo-area hospital last night following a battle with COVID-19. He was 82. Chiba rose to stardom in Japan in the 1960s, portraying samurai, fighters and police detectives while performing many of his own stunts. His popularity spread internationally after his 1970s Japanese film “The Street Fighter” proved popular in the U.S. Chiba’s Hollywood credits include the 1991 film “Aces” and 1993’s “Kill Bill.”

SPORTS
NATIONAL LEAGUE
Arizona 6 – PHILADELPHIA 2
… Nick Ahmed’s two-run double in the bottom of the seventh inning sparked a five-run rally that carried the Diamondbacks past the Phillies. Madison Bumgarner (7-7) allowed just a run on three hits over eight innings and helped himself at the plate with an RBI single.

CINCINNATI 6 – Miami 1… Luis Castillo (7-12) held the Marlins to a run on eight hits over seven innings. Joey Votto belted a three-run homer during a four-run bottom of the fourth inning for the Reds.

ST. LOUIS 8 – Milwaukee 4… Tyler O’Neill blasted a three-run homer during a five-run and the Cardinals came from behind to double up on the Brewers. Lars Nootbaar also went deep.

L.A. DODGERS 4 – N.Y. Mets 1… Seven pitchers held the Mets at bay and the Dodgers breezed to their seventh straight win. Trea Turner had a couple of hits, including a run-scoring single.

AMERICAN LEAGUE
L.A. Angels 13 – DETROIT 10
… The Angels erased a 10-2 sixth-inning deficit in rallying past the Tigers. Max Stassi belted a go-ahead two-run homer in the top of the eighth inning. Phil Gosselin also went deep. Brandon Marsh’s two-run triple capped a six-run sixth.

TAMPA BAY 7 – Baltimore 2… Shane McClanahan (8-4) allowed just a run on five hits over five innings and the Rays cruised past the Orioles. Brandon Lowe homered with a runner aboard. Austin Meadows and Ji-Man Choi also drove in two runs.

Seattle 9 – TEXAS 8 (11 innings)… The Mariners recovered to top the Rangers after blowing a five-run lead in the ninth. Ty France smacked a tie-breaking two-run homer in the top of the 11th inning. Mitch Haniger connected for a three-run shot.

Houston 6 – KANSAS CITY 3 (10 innings)… The Astros overcame the Royals after spotting them an early three-run lead. Aledmys Diaz singled home a tie-breaking run to spark a three-run top of the 10th inning. Chas McCormick drove in three runs.

Oakland 5 – CHI. WHITE SOX 4… The Athletics got a two-run homer from Matt Olson and solo shots from Sean Murphy and Matt Chapman in squeaking past the White Sox.

N.Y. YANKEES 7 – Minnesota 5… The Yankees took a 6-0 lead into the sixth inning and held off the Twins. Kyle Higashioka singled home a run to spark a four-run bottom of the third inning and homered with a runner aboard in the fourth. Giancarlo Stanton added his 20th homer with the bases empty.

TODAY’S MLB SCHEDULE
NATIONAL LEAGUE
Miami (Elieser Hernandez, 0-0) is at Cincinnati (Sonny Gray, 4-6)…
Milwaukee (Brett Anderson, 4-6) hosts Washington (TBA)…
Pittsburgh (Mitch Keller, 3-10) is at St. Louis (Miles Mikolas, 0-0)…
Colorado (Austin Gomber, 9-7) hosts Arizona (Tyler Gilbert, 1-1)…
the N.Y. Mets (Carlos Carrasco, 0-1) are at the L.A. Dodgers (Walker Buehler, 12-2)…
San Diego (Blake Snell, 6-4) hosts Philadelphia (Matt Moore, 2-3)

AMERICAN LEAGUE
Minnesota (Charlie Barnes, 0-2) is at the N.Y. Yankees (Nestor Cortes, Jr., 1-1)…
Toronto (Robbie Ray, 9-5) hosts Detroit (Tyler Alexander, 2-2)…
the L.A. Angels (Jaime Barria, 2-1) are at Cleveland (TBA)…
Tampa Bay (Michael Wacha, 2-4) hosts the Chi. White Sox (Lucas Giolito, 9-9)…
Texas (Dane Dunning, 5-7) is at Boston (Chris Sale, 1-0)…
Houston (Lance McCullers, Jr., 9-4) hosts Seattle (Yusei Kikuchi, 7-6)

INTERLEAGUE
Kansas City (Brad Keller, 7-12) is at the Chi. Cubs (Zach Davies, 6-9)…
Baltimore (Keegan Akin, 0-7) hosts Atlanta (Max Fried, 10-7)…
San Francisco (Alex Wood, 10-3) is at Oakland (James Kaprielian, 6-4)

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