Today in the Daily Sports Roundup: The Lakers try to go up 3-0 on the Nuggets, MLB stages afternoon games, and the French Open heats up at Roland Garros.
Tipping off on the hardwood . . .
Kobe Bryant and company will be looking to take a stranglehold on the Western Conference Finals on Monday night when they contest Game 4 of the series in Denver. The Lakers surged to a 103-97 victory in Game 3 on Saturday, getting 41 points from Bryant and 16 points (including three 3-pointers) from Trevor Ariza. Carmelo Anthony led the way on offense with 21 points for the Nuggets. Oddsmakers have Denver pegged as a 4.5-point home favorite for Monday night.
Meeting up on the diamond . . .
The holiday Monday offers up plenty of matinee baseball action, including the Cardinals taking on the division-rival Brewers in Milwaukee. Chris Carpenter will get the ball for St. Louis in that contest; the righthander has yet to allow an earned run this season over 15 innings pitched, compiling a 2-0 record. Countering for the Brewers will be Yovani Gallardo, who gave up six earned runs over five innings in his last outing against the Astros to fall to 4-2 with a 3.83 ERA.
Elsewhere on the National League schedule for Monday it’ll be Houston at Cincinnati, the Dodgers at Colorado, San Diego at Arizona, Atlanta at San Francisco, Florida at Philadelphia, Washington at the Mets, and Pittsburgh at the Cubs. Chicago starter Ryan Dempster (3-3, 4.40 ERA) has taken the loss in two of his last four starts despite allowing only eight earned runs over 20 1-3 innings.
Over in the American League on Monday the Twins will be looking for a solid outing at home from Francisco Liriano (2-5, 6.04 ERA), who was pounded for seven earned runs on seven hits in just four innings of work vs. the White Sox last time out. The Red Sox will send Brad Penny to the mound on Monday; the righthander is 4-1 on the season despite a 6.07 ERA, and he beat the Twins in April.
Rounding out the Junior Circuit slate for the day: Toronto at Baltimore, the Yankees at Texas, Detroit at Kansas City, Seattle at Oakland, the White Sox at the Angels, and Tampa Bay at Cleveland. The Indians will go with Fausto Carmona (2-4, 5.74 ERA), while David Price makes his season debut for Tampa.
Rounding out the Roundup . . .
Finally, tennis’ French Open has Day 2 action on Monday, with matches getting underway early in the morning for those in the Eastern time zone. Taking to the court on Monday are both Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer, who will look to easily dispatch opening opponents Marcos Daniel and Alberto Martin. Andy Roddick will also see the court on Monday, while notable women in action include Venus Williams and Maria Sharapova. Defending women’s champion Ana Ivanovic got past Sara Errani in her first match Sunday by scores of 7-6, 6-3.