This is WEEKEND EDITION from NPR News, I'm Scott Simon. Hey, it's time for sports.
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SIMON: In the NFL playoffs this weekend, will the Falcons, Seahawks and Ravens soar? Will the Broncos buck, the 49ers strike gold, the Patriots run up the flag, the Texans remember, and the Packers pack up and go home? How many ridiculous phrases can I work into a sentence?
NPR's Tom Goldman joins us now to help us make sense of all of 'em. Tom, thanks for being with us.
Major League Baseball has enacted new anti-doping policies that are being described as unprecedented in American professional sports. Yesterday, Major League Baseball and its Players Union said that starting next year they will be fighting the use of human growth hormone and testosterone - two allegedly popular banned substances.
NPR sports correspondent Tom Goldman has been covering this story. Tom, good morning.
Audie Cornish talks to sportswriter Stefan Fatsis about news in the National Football League. They cover the injury of Washington Redskins' quarterback Robert Griffin III, new information about brain damage sustained by the late linebacker Junior Seau, and a preview of the weekend's playoff games.
Major League baseball will begin random regular-season blood tests for human growth hormone, seen here in an injector pen holding about one week's worth of HGH doses at the clinic of Dr. Mark Molitch of Northwestern University.
Credit M. Spencer Green / AP
Major League Baseball will expand its effort to fight performance enhancing drugs to include random blood tests for human growth hormone and other substances during the regular season, under the terms of an agreement with the players union that was first reported by
Junior Seau, seen here playing for the New England Patriots toward the end of his career, suffered from a degenerative brain disease, scientists say.
Credit Otto Greule Jr. / Getty Images
Junior Seau, the former NFL linebacker whose suicide last May at age 43 shocked fans and former teammates, suffered from chronic traumatic encephalopathy, a neurodegenerative disease associated with repetitive head injuries, according to a study by the National Institutes of Health.
Baseball writers send a message when they vote for candidates for the Hall of Fame, both in who they select and in who they pass up. And for the first time since 1996, only the eighth time in baseball history that baseball writers decided not to nominate anyone for induction. The winners are no one. The pool of candidates was one of the most star-studded ever. It included Barry Bonds, Roger Clemens, Sammy Sosa - players all linked to performance-enhancing drugs.
NPR sports correspondent Tom Goldman joins me. Good morning.
From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Audie Cornish.
MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:
And I'm Melissa Block.
JEFF IDELSON: Time to open up the envelope.
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BLOCK: The envelope revealing the results of this year's vote for baseball's Hall of Fame. We're hearing Jeff Idelson on the MLB Network. He's president of the Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum in Cooperstown, New York.
Craig Biggio of the Houston Astros led the 2013 Hall of Fame voting, but fell short of the 75 percent required for induction in Cooperstown. No players were chosen in the balloting.
Credit Justin Sullivan / Getty Images
The Baseball Hall of Fame's Class of 2013 will not have any new inductees from the ranks of the recently retired, despite a list of candidates that includes Roger Clemens and Barry Bonds. Those players, whose careers left their names at or near the top in the record books in multiple categories, are suffering from the lingering stigma of steroid use.
It is only the second time since 1971 that no players were sent to Cooperstown. A press release from the Hall of Fame, which announced the results today at 2 p.m. ET, called it "a shutout."