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A Cards-Pirates series...Top-25 preview and recap...Williams back in New York action

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ST. LOUIS (AP) — A big series in the National League Central starts tonight in St. Louis as the Cardinals entertain the Pirates. Coming into weekend play the Cards top the Pirates by 6 ½ games for the division lead. Should the Pirates sweep the three games they'd put themselves in position to possibly catch the Cards in the final weeks of the season, while a sweep by the Cards might mean the end of the Pirates division championship hopes.

UNDATED (AP) — Three Top-25 teams are in action tonight. Baylor is the highest ranked school with a game as the fourth-ranked Bears are playing at SMU. The other games feature No. 5 Michigan State against Western Michigan and 23rd-ranked Boise State at home to Washington.

UNDATED (AP) — Three of the Top-25 teams in the AP preseason poll played last night. Second-ranked TCU was a winner, stopping Minnesota while 16th-ranked Georgia Tech beat Alcorn State and No. 23 Arizona stopped Texas-San Antonio.

NEW YORK (AP) — Serena Williams is back on the court at the U.S. open tonight. The women's top seed continues her quest for a calendar Grand Slam with a match against fellow American Bethanie Mattek (MAT'-ihk)-Sands. Men's No. 1 Novak Djokovic (NOH'-vak JOH'-kuh-vich) is playing this afternoon against 25th-seed Andreas Seppi of Italy.

NORTON, Mass. (AP) — The Deutsche (DOY'-cheh) Bank Championship starts play today in Norton, Massachusetts. This is the second of the four FedEx Cup playoff tournaments. The winner of the first event, last week's The Barclays, was PGA Championship winner Jason Day.

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