Trey Hillman hired to take over struggling Royals

KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Trey Hillman was hired Friday as manager of the Kansas City Royals, taking over a long-struggling team that hasn't been to the playoffs since winning the 1985 World Series.

Hillman is currently managing the Nippon Ham Fighters in the Japan World Series. He replaces Buddy Bell, who completed the season with Kansas City after saying in August he would step aside.

The 44-year-old Hillman, who has never played or managed in the majors, will be introduced at a news conference Monday.

• Corey Koskie became eligible for free agency when the Milwaukee Brewers declined his $6.5 million option for 2008.

The 34-year-old third basemen gets a $500,000 buyout. He did not play this season after dealing with the effects of a concussion he received in 2006.

Koskie did not immediately return a message seeking comment. The Brewers said he'll remain on their 40-man roster until he declares for free agency.

• PRO FOOTBALL -- Suspended defensive tackle Tank Johnson practiced with the Dallas Cowboys for the first time, disappointed commissioner Roger Goodell didn't shorten his eight-game ban but glad to be back on the field.

Johnson was signed by Dallas after getting cut by the Chicago Bears and can't play in a game until Nov. 11 against the New York Giants. He said he'd hoped Goodell would agree to shorten his suspension for violating probation on a gun charge to six games, but will settle for the three weeks of practice he was granted.

• A strip club manager paralyzed in a triple shooting is suing the NFL, the Tennessee Titans and suspended football player Adam "Pacman" Jones, claiming they're responsible for his injuries.

Former professional wrestler Tommy Urbanski seeks unspecified damages in the lawsuit filed Friday in Clark County District Court. It also names the owners of Harlem Knights, a Houston strip club that rented the Minxx Gentleman's Club in Las Vegas in February for a party the weekend of the NBA All-Star game.

• COLLEGE FOOTBALL -- A Montgomery County man has appealed a judge's dismissal of his lawsuit against University of Arkansas officials over an e-mail critical of Mitch Mustain and asked the state's highest court to order the school to preserve the messages about the former Arkansas quarterback.

John David Terry of Mount Ida filed a motion for accelerated appeal and preservation of evidence late Thursday with the state Supreme Court. Washington County Circuit Judge Mark Lindsay dismissed Terry's lawsuit against university Chancellor John White and university system president B. Alan Sugg, calling the case "meritless."

• TENNIS -- Rafael Nadal, coming off a five-week layoff, was upset by David Nalbandian 6-1, 6-2 in the quarterfinals of the Madrid Masters.

Nadal, who sat out after the U.S. Open because of tendinitis in both knees, had five winners and 29 unforced errors against Nalbandian.

• HOLE IN ONE -- Charles Smith of Rock Hill shot his first career hole in one at Waterford Golf Club.

Smith aced the 133-yard, par three 11th hole using a 9-iron. Smith was playing with his wife, Yvon.

• Curt Matthews notched a hole in one at The Cliffs at Keowee Vineyards on Thursday.