Sports Notes - 07-01-2008

Jul 22, 2008 6:56 PM

PALMS ENTERS BOXING RING

The long-awaited Miguel Cotto-Antonio Margarito bout this Saturday at MGM Grand starts some intriguing matchups boxing has been missing in recent months. Here’s a list of future fights bound to attract plenty of coverage: On Aug. 2, the Palms Casino/Resort ventures into boxing with an IBF welterweight title bout between favored Joshua Clottey and Zab Judah.

On Sept. 20 at New York’s Madison Square Garden, unbeaten Joe Calzaghe off his win over Bernard Hopkins faces ex-light heavyweight champ Roy Jones Jr. As for Hopkins, he’ll face middleweight champ Kelly Pavlik in Atlantic City on Oct. 18. And on Nov. 22, in anything but a turkey, light welterweights Ricky Hatton and Paul Malignaggi tangle back at MGM Grand – Staff and wire reports.

YANKS HAVE BETS ‘UNDER’ CONTROL

You would think the best team Steinbrenner’s money can buy would score a few more runs. Of course, under results are not always due to lack of offense. Still, in 98 games, the Yanks lead the majors with 62 unders, including Sunday’s 2-1 win over Oakland.

Bettors looking for a model of consistency should lock in on the Minnesota Twins. Aside from a three-game losing streak at the start of July, the Twins have not lost consecutive games since June 10-11. They do it with timely hitting, defense and pitching. Minnesota is above .500 with each of its starting pitchers. In other words, no weak link in the rotation. And, closer Joe Nathan is rock solid.

If you are looking for a bet-on pitcher, try ex-Twins and Reds righty Kyle Lohse. St. Louis is 11-1 in the last 12 starts Lohse has made, including a run of four. – Mark Mayer