Sports briefs 12/9/05

Friday, December 9, 2005

Baseball

* Major league baseball players made it official, unanimously approving a new steroid agreement that toughens penalties and could result in a lifetime ban for a third offender.

The player's association executive board, as expected, approved the deal worked out with management Nov. 15 under the threat of even tougher legislation from Congress.

Under the agreement, players will be suspended 50 games without pay for a first offense and 100 for a second offense. A third positive test would result in a lifetime ban.

Hockey

* Pittsburgh Penguins owner-captain Mario Lemieux was discharged from a hospital Thursday after being diagnosed with atrial fibrillation, an irregular heartbeat that can be treated with medication and should not affect his career.

Lemieux, 40, was admitted to an undisclosed Pittsburgh hospital after practice Wednesday, after complaining of an irregular heartbeat -- a condition team general manager Craig Patrick said Lemieux has experienced several times in recent weeks.

-- From wire reports

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