MILWAUKEE -- The Brewers are extremely close to a deal to acquire Indians ace C.C. Sabathia in a trade that bolsters their rotation for a playoff push, a person with direct knowledge of the deal told The Associated Press.
The person requested anonymity because the trade has not been finalized and said there were a few remaining issues to work out.
Sabathia went 19-7 with a 3.21 ERA to win the AL Cy Young last season and would give the Brewers another power pitcher to pair with Ben Sheets as Milwaukee tries to make the playoffs for the first time since 1982.
The big lefty is 6-8 with a 3.83 ERA for the Indians, but has also been plagued with a lack of run support. In nine of his 18 starts, Cleveland has scored two runs or less for him.
To get Sabathia, Milwaukee will have to part with a package of prospects including Matt LaPorta, a power hitting left fielder selected in the first round last year who was scratched from a Double-A game in Huntsville on Sunday night.
LaPorta was hitting .288 with 20 homers and 66 RBIs in 84 games for Huntsville.
• A Charlotte businessman paid $21,000 for a short letter written by a 17-year-old Hank Aaron, in which the future home run king tells the owner of a Negro League baseball team that his parents approve of him joining the team.
The Charlotte Observer reported Sunday that Jeffrey Gitomer outbid several others, including the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum, for the letter at a sports auction outside Philadelphia.
The seven-line letter is dated Nov. 22, 1951, from Mobile, Ala., and written to Syd Pollack.
The letter reads: "Dear Mr. Pollack. I receive you letter, and it is entirely satisfactory with my parents Mr. & Mrs. Aaron, that I may join the Indianapolis Clowns next season."
It ends: "Sincerely yours, Henry Aaron."
The letter is part of a sports memorabilia collection owned by the 62-year-old Gitomer that consists mostly of one-of-a-kind items, including jerseys, balls, programs and photos. They're stored in a well-wired hideaway known to few.
• AUTO RACING -- Ryan Hunter-Reay figured the luck had to go his way eventually.
Turns out Sunday was the day.
Hunter-Reay got the opening he needed to earn his first IndyCar Series victory when Scott Dixon made an uncharacteristic mistake, ending his bid for a fourth straight victory on the road course at Watkins Glen International.
• SWIMMING -- Dara Torres already knew she was going to the Olympics. That's not good enough anymore.
The 41-year-old Torres won the 50-meter freestyle Sunday night with another American record, giving her the chance to swim two individual events in Beijing.
She's already done what no one thought possible, returning from her second retirement -- and just two years removed from having a child -- to reclaim her place as America's most dominant female sprinter. She'll be the oldest American ever to swim at the Olympics, but she wants so much more.
Having already won the 100 free Friday, Torres got off to the third-slowest start in the most frenetic lap in swimming. But she was in control midway through, touching in 24.25 seconds to eclipse the mark of 24.38 she set the previous night in the semifinals.
Jessica Hardy claimed the second Olympic spot in 24.82, beating Lara Jackson by six-hundredths of a second. Torres has raised the possibility of dropping the 100, worried her still-buff body can't take the grind of two individual events, especially when she's likely will swim two relays, too.