Test of Time 

July 20, 2023

By: Carlos Alvarez

Good Morning,

Welcome to the weekend of international insomnia. The World Cup is underway in Australia and New Zealand. The Tour de France speeds towards Paris. And golf’s final major has teed off in the UK. It’s sports vs. sleep in this week\’s test of the time zones, and sleep is a heavy underdog.

Live Action This Morning

 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup

 151st Open Championship

 Tour de France (Stage 18)

*Links to Live Blogs, Leaderboards & Updates

Letter Rip!


The 151st Open Primer

Photo: Stuart Franklin/R&A / Getty Images

Tee Times, Featured Groups, Favorites & Everything You Need to Know for the 151st Open Championship (By Marissa Kasch)

The Open Championship is officially underway at Royal Liverpool! Golf\’s bittersweet major is arguably one of the most exciting tournaments of the year. It\’s the fourth and final major of the season, so sit back and soak it all in. Here\’s everything you need to know about the host course, favorites, and today\’s tee times.

Get to Know Royal Liverpool

This is the 13th time that Royal Liverpool (better known as St. Andrews) will be hosting The Open. The seaside links course sits on the west coast of England and has only seen two champions this century: Tiger Woods and Rory McIlroy. Royal Liverpool is notorious for its tight fairways, steep green runoffs and incredibly deep bunkers. The remodeled par-3 17th Hole will annihilate players. When Tiger won back in 2006, he hit irons off almost every hole just to keep the ball in play.

The Forecast

As if the narrow fairways weren’t challenging enough, the elements will add to the difficulty. The weather forecast predicts steady 10 mph winds for the first three days with even stronger winds on Sunday. Along with the wind may come rain. As all golfers know, rain has no place on a links course, and wind has no place on a tight course. It looks like both of these unwelcome guests will be showing up to the party. 

The Favorites

To no one’s surprise, Rory McIlroy is favored to lift the Claret Jug again after nine years and his win at the Scottish Open last weekend. Scottie Scheffler has not finished outside the top-12 in a PGA event since October, and he\’s finished in the top 10 of every major this year. He’s also the No. 1 golfer in the world right now. Rickie Fowler sits among the world’s best golfers as a favorite to win The Open after his first win in 96 tournaments at the Rocket Mortgage Classic. Jon Rahm, Brooks Koepka and the usual suspects are also lurking.

The Open Championship Odds

R. McIlroy (+525), S. Scheffler (+750), J. Rahm (+1200), R. Fowler (+1200), T. Fleetwood (+1500), C. Smith (+1500), B. Koepka (+1800), X. Schauffele (+2500), T. Hatton (+2500), C. Morikawa (+2800), S. Lowry (+3000), D. Johnson (+3000), J. Spieth (+3000), P. Cantlay (+3000) | Full List of Odds

Tee Times (Featured Groups)

4:03 AM: J. Spieth, M. Fitzpatrick, J. Day 

4:36 AM: P. Cantlay, B. Koepka, H. Matsuyama

4:47 AM: S. Scheffler, T. Fleetwood, A. Scott

4:58 AM: C. Smith, X. Schauffele, W. Clark

5:09 AM: S. Lowry, R. Fowler, R. MacIntyre

5:20 AM: C. Young, S. Woo Kim, B. DeChambeau

9:37 AM: K. Bradley, S. Im, J. Niemann

9:48 AM: V. Hovland, T. Finau, J. Thomas

9:59 AM: R. McIlroy, J. Rahm, J. Rose

10:10 AM: C. Morikawa, M. Homa, T. Hatton

* All times ET for television coverage

For a full list of tee times, click here.

Golf fans, set your alarms. It\’s your last major for seven months, and the tee times will be bright and early for American viewers. Live Blog & Leaderboard (In Action Now)

Read More

Yahoo!: British Open Underway With Record Prize Money Up for Grabs

ESPN: The Open 2023: Storylines & Players to Watch This Week

Golf.com: ‘They’ve Created a Monstrosity’: Caddie Blasts Open Championship’s 17th Hole



Training Camp Rankings & Storylines

Photo: Icon Sportswire / Getty Images

NFL Power Rankings & Stories to Watch Before Training Camps Begin

Buckle up, football fans! Your time has come. It’s been a long offseason to get to this point, but training camps are just days away. Rookies are already reporting to camps, and the veterans are packing their bags. That leaves us in limbo for a few weeks before teams begin to put the product on the field, and even then, it won’t be final until September. Roster cuts and depth-chart shuffling will dominate the next month of NFL news, but it’s never too early to look ahead to the 2023 season. Here’s where we\’ve slotted each team in the football hierarchy based on a collection of NFL experts, 2022 records and offseason acquisitions. There are also a few holdouts and positional battles you\’ll want to keep an eye on.

NFL Preseason Power Rankings (2022 Record)

1. Chiefs (14-3)

2. Eagles (14-3)

3. Bengals (12-4)

4. 49ers (13-4)

5. Bills (13-3) 

6. Jets (7-10)

7. Chargers (10-7)

8. Cowboys (12-5)

9. Dolphins (9-8)

10. Ravens (10-7)

Teams 11-20

11. Seahawks (9-8)

12. Jaguars (9-8)

13. Lions (9-8)

14. Vikings (13-4)

15. Giants (9-7)

16. Browns (7-10)

17. Bears (3-14)

18. Broncos (5-12)

19. Saints (7-10)

20. Commanders (8-8-1)

Teams 21-32

21. Steelers (9-8)

22. Patriots (8-9)

23. Panthers (7-10)

24. Packers (8-9)

25. Titans (7-10)

26. Raiders (6-11)

27. Falcons (7-10)

28. Rams (5-12)

29. Buccaneers (8-9)

30. Colts (4-12-1)

31. Cardinals (4-13)

32. Texans (3-13-1)

Analysis & Predictions: Our initial rankings feature last year’s Super Bowl teams at 1-2, and there’s likely little debate about the top-5 teams on the list. We expect to see a lot of the same playoff teams making deep runs again this year, but four sleeper teams have our attention — Jets, Broncos, Lions and Bears. Aaron Rodgers shakes up the AFC East and puts New York in the postseason, and the addition of Sean Payton in Denver sends the Broncos back into contention. In the NFC, we’ll replace two playoff teams (Vikings and Giants) with the Lions and Bears. Detroit finished last season on an 8-2 run from November on. As for the Chicago? It’s now or never for QB Justin Fields, and we think it’s now.

Training Camp Battles to Watch

49ers QBs: Brock Purdy, Trey Lance & Sam Darnold

Colts QBs: Gardner Minshew vs. Anthony Richardson

Bucs QBs: Baker Mayfield vs. Kyle Trask

Titans QBs: Ryan Tannehill, Malik Willis & Will Levis

Jets OTs: 5 Players, 2 Spots (Who Protects Aaron Rodgers?)

Chiefs WRs: Who is No. 1 After Juju Smith-Schuster Departure?

Panthers WRs: Who is No. 1 After D.J. Moore\’s Departure?

Training Camp Holdouts to Watch

RB Saquon Barkley (Giants)

RB Josh Jacobs (Raiders)

OL Zack Martin (Cowboys)

DT Chris Jones (Chiefs)

DE Danielle Hunter (Vikings)

Read More

B/R: Over/Under Win Predictions for Every NFL Team

The Score: NFL Power Rankings: Every Team’s Biggest Question Entering Training Camp



Heavenly Sweeps

Photo: Ronald Martinez / Getty Images

MLB Sweep Tracker: Angels & Rangers Sweep Yankees & Rays (Respectively) as MLB Upheaval Continues

The MLB we once knew before the All-Star break has been flipped upside down. Just one week into the second half of the season, barely two series, we’ve seen three of the best teams in baseball hit their worst losing streaks of the season — Rays, Braves, and Yankees. That means their opponents are riding win streaks, and the tides are turning. On Wednesday, the Angels and Rangers swept the Yankees and Rays, respectively, giving the AL East a much-needed reality check. Add in the Mets’ hot streak and the Marlins’ decline in the NL East, and we’re looking at some fascinating wild card races down the stretch.

Win Streaks

Rangers (Won 6)

Cardinals (Won 5)

Angels (Won 3)

Mets (Won 3)

Losing Streaks

Marlins (Lost 6)

Rays (Lost 4)

Braves (Lost 4)

Yankees (Lost 4)

Full MLB Standings

MLB Quick-Hitters

Angels Sweep YankeesLos Angeles notched its first sweep against the Yankees since 2009 with a 7-3 win on Wednesday night. With each win before the trade deadline, the Angels are less and less likely to be sellers, particularly when it comes to Mr. Ohtani.

Rangers Sweep Rays: Texas completed the series sweep against Tampa Bay on Wednesday night (5-1) behind Jonah Heim’s three-run blast and a stellar defense. The Rangers (58-39) have the fourth-best record in the majors, but their plus-166 run differential leads all other teams by more than 20 runs.

Reds Snap Giants StreakThe Giants entered Wednesday with the longest active win streak (7), but Cincinnati finally stopped the bleeding on their own losing skid. The Reds beat the Giants (3-2) with one swing — a three-run blast from Will Benson in the third inning.

Mets Still BreathingThe Mets won their third straight last night behind Justin Verlander\’s domination against the White Sox (5-1). JV showed a glimpse of renewed greatness (8 IP, 7 Ks, 3 Hits, 1 ER). The Mets (45-50) are just seven games back of the wild card.

O’s Take Over AL EastWith last night’s win over the Dodgers (8-5), the Orioles have officially tied the slumping Rays for the top spot in the AL East. Baltimore (58-37) is 9-2 since July 4, and they’re the only AL East team not on an active losing streak.



 MLS All-Star Game

Arsenal Shuts Out MLS All-Stars (5-0)

It wasn’t a shiny showing for the MLS just days before the debut of Lionel Messi. The last two years saw the MLS field a squad to face Mexico’s Liga MX for the All-Star match. This was the first showdown against a European power since 2019, and it didn’t go well. Gabriel Jesus scored a highlight-reel chip from outside the box to open the scoring for Arsenal, and it was a blitz from the Gunners the rest of the way.

 Tour de France

Vingegaard Nears Repeat After Decisive Stage 17

While Felix Gall earned the win on Stage 17 Wednesday, race leader Jonas Vingegaard increased his advantage over 2nd-place Tadej Pogacar after a devastating collapse. Pogacar crashed early and dropped five miles from the summit of Wednesday’s climb. The gap between the top two riders was just 10 seconds when the week began. It’s now 7 minutes and 35 seconds. Barring a catastrophe in the final four days, it’ll be Vingegaard’s second straight TDF crown.



 Messi Chose Miami, And Miami Loves Him

Soccer-crazy South Florida has welcomed the world’s greatest player — now the region’s best-known celebrity — with murals, marketing, and milanesas. Lionel Messi chose Miami and shook up soccer. Now, Miami will make sure he stays. (NY Times)

 Potential Shohei Ohtani Trades

Two weeks before the Aug. 1 MLB trade deadline, the Los Angeles Angels are hovering around the .500 mark, which leaves one question hanging over the entire sport: Will the Halos trade free-agent-to-be Shohei Ohtani? (ESPN)





The Must-Watch List

FIFA Women’s World Cup

Australia vs. Ireland (Live Now)

Nigeria vs. Canada (10:30 pm ET)

Philippines vs. Switzerland (Fri. 1:00 am ET)

Spain vs. Costa Rica (Fri. 3:30 am ET)

The 151st Open Championship

Round 1 at Royal Liverpool (Live Now)


Brewers at Phillies (12:35 pm ET)

Giants at Reds (12:35 pm ET)

Orioles at Rays (6:40 pm ET)

Cardinals at Cubs (8:05 pm ET)

Tour de France

Stage 18: Moutiers→Bourgen-Bresse (Live Now)

Download The Sportsletter\’s Must-Watch Calendar



Poll Results

Yesterday, we asked: Do you think the U.S. Women’s National Team will win a third straight World Cup? In one of the more stunning responses to our reader polls, the overwhelming majority voted no. It appears our team is taking the field over the two-time defending champs. We\’ll get a first look tomorrow night.

 No — 88%

 Yes — 12%