A look ahead to top enterprise and feature stories planned globally by AP Sports. New digests will go out each Thursday and Monday and will be repeated on other weekdays. Please note that story plans may change depending on news and other issues.
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As with all our operations, we welcome and want your feedback. If you have thoughts or questions about the Sports Showcase Digest or the material listed, please reach out to Oskar Garcia, deputy sports editor for presentation and storytelling, at 215-446-6632 or at ogarcia(at)ap.org.
All times are Eastern.
SUNDAY, June 3
SOC–MLS-WCUP-CLUB VS. COUNTRY
VANCOUVER, British Columbia – It’s a delicate balance between club and country for those players in Major League Soccer with the opportunity to play in the upcoming World Cup. Their club performance has gotten them in position to be considered for a spot on soccer’s biggest stage, but the last thing any of them want to do is create any undue risks to put their participation in Russia in jeopardy. Players in other leagues around the world face the same risks, but it’s elevated in MLS where many players bound for Russia were playing up through the last weekend of May before joining their national teams. By Tim Booth. UPCOMING: 850 words, photos by 3 a.m. Sunday.
MONDAY, June 4
RAC-BELMONT-AMERICAN PHAROAH VS JUSTIFY
Four years after American Pharoah won the Triple Crown for trainer Bob Baffert, Justify is a victory at the Belmont away from the feat done just once since 1978. Baffert sees plenty of physical similarities between the champion horses, but they traveled different paths. Pharoah was a 2-year-old champion and looked the part of a super horse, while Justify is a late-bloomer who wasn’t expected to do this. By Stephen Whyno. UPCOMING: 850 words, file photos, video by 4 a.m. Monday.
WEDNESDAY, June 6
RAC–BELMONT-JOCKEY CONCUSSION PROTOCOL
Horse racing is years behind other sports in concussion education, evaluation, diagnosis and return protocol for jockeys, who often suffer them when they fall off. Doctors have spent the past two years developing a protocol, but progress has been slowed by the industry’s lack of continuity from state to state and track to track. Riders who are on the Triple Crown trail from the Kentucky Derby to the Preakness and the Belmont see different rules and care along the way as horse racing seeks to catch up with the NFL, NHL and NBA on brain injuries decades after developing better treatment for horses than riders. By Stephen Whyno. UPCOMING: 950 words, file photos by 4 a.m. Wednesday.
Again, if you have questions about the Sports Showcase Digest or the material listed, please reach out to Oskar Garcia at 215-446-6632 or ogarcia(at)ap.org.