CHICAGO (AP) — Cubs manager Joe Maddon think baseball’s video review umpires should be replaced by “a bunch of nerds.”

Chicago’s 5-2 loss to the Los Angeles Dodgers on Wednesday night ended when Chris Denorfia singled off the base of the left-field wall with two outs in the ninth and was thrown out by Scott Van Slyke, who made a perfect strike to second.

Second base umpire Jordan Baker’s call was upheld after a video review.

“I cannot believe the conclusion,” Maddon said. “I mean, even as a fan standing in the dugout at that particular moment, I wish that whomever made that call could have been at Wrigley Field and looked at our big screen if they wanted to see something definitive. To say there was nothing definitive right there, I cannot disagree with more strongly. I have no idea why they would say that. It makes zero sense to me whatsoever. I’m just being honest, folks. It made no sense.

“The play stands? If it was confirmed, I could almost live with that. To say it stands is not a really cool way to go in that particular moment with the game on the line. It was obvious from that one shot that he was absolutely safe. No questions asked. That might be the worst non-overturn I’ve seen to this point.”

Since the start of the 2014 season, plays such as this one have been subject to video review by umpires at Baseball Advanced Media in New York. The name of the individual umpire making the review decision is not released.

“I just think it really screams for an independent group back there to really research the video as opposed to working umpires who are on the field,” Maddon said. “I think you should get just a bunch of nerds back there who know how to look at a videotape and then come to a conclusion. I think it’ll be much more interesting that way.”

LOS ANGELES (AP) — For his next trick, Shigeru Miyamoto is working in reality, not virtual reality.

While the famed Japanese creator of “Mario Bros.” and “Donkey Kong” spent most of his trip to last week’s Electronic Entertainment Expo touting such upcoming Nintendo games as “Super Mario Maker” and “Star Fox Zero,” Miyamoto was also enthusiastic about a totally different undertaking. He’s helping to bring his digital creations to life in Universal theme parks.

“We’ve come to the point where the kids who grew up playing Nintendo games are now parents who have their own kids,” said the veteran game designer during an interview translated by Bill Trinen, product marketing director at Nintendo of America. “I think for them it will be a tremendous experience.”

Nintendo Co. announced plans last month for immersive experiences featuring the Japanese gaming giant’s characters at Universal theme parks, but it didn’t provide any details. Universal Parks & Resorts is owned by cable company Comcast Corp. and has properties in Los Angeles; Orlando, Fla.; Osaka, Japan; and Sentosa, Singapore.

Miyamoto suggested that plucky plumber Mario and his colorful Mushroom Kingdom would be hopping into Universal’s parks, though he didn’t elaborate on specific attractions. He noted Nintendo has been working closely with the theme park behemoth on the project.

“We have all the knowledge of who the Mario character is, what the Mario world is and how it’s represented,” said Miyamoto. “We have been in constant communication with (Universal) communicating our vision to them, and they’re turning it into something that could exist within that park. It’s really about that partnership.”

Despite the forthcoming release of the sci-fi space combat game “Star Fox Zero” and the do-it-yourself platformer “Super Mario Maker” for Nintendo’s Wii U console, the 62-year-old game designer has no immediate plans to retire — and his colleagues don’t want him to, either.

“For me, because it’s Mr. Miyamoto, I want him to continue making things as long as he wants to continue making things,” said Shinya Takahashi, general manager of the software planning and development division at Kyoto, Japan-based Nintendo. “I really think that Mr. Miyamoto will continue to be creative — and not just in the area of video games.”

Nintendo is celebrating the 30th anniversary of its groundbreaking platformer “Super Mario Bros.” throughout the year, culminating with the Sept. 11 release of “Super Mario Maker.” The new game allows users to construct and upload their own “Super Mario” levels.

The designers at Universal, which has in recent years achieved success with Harry Potter-themed areas in its parks, likely won’t have it as easy as “Mario Maker” players.

“That’s the challenge put forth to Universal Studios,” said Miyamoto. “How do you take something digital and bring it into the real world in a way that people can experience it in real life? That’s where we’re working together.”

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Online:

http://mario.nintendo.com

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Follow AP Entertainment Writer Derrik J. Lang on Twitter at http://www.twitter.com/derrikjlang.

CENTENNIAL, Colo. (AP) — Attorneys for Colorado theater shooter James Holmes began presenting their case Thursday, hoping to show he was legally insane when he killed 12 people and wounded 70 others at a packed movie premiere in July 2012.

Defense witnesses will offer a less emotional and more clinical assessment of Holmes after two months of often-gruesome testimony from prosecution witnesses, including many visibly wounded victims.

Without the scores of victims on their side, Holmes’ attorneys plan to present evidence in less than a quarter of the time taken by prosecutors. Their goal is not only to keep Holmes out of prison but also to keep him alive.

The defense’s first witness was a nurse, Jason Frank, who worked at Arapahoe County Jail in November 2012, when Holmes ran headfirst into walls and fell backward on his bed, sending him to the hospital. Defense attorneys also showed a video of Holmes falling to the ground and lying there supervised by some deputies for several minutes.

After the footage was shown, prosecutors grilled Frank about his observations of Holmes over several weeks. The nurse testified that Holmes was a little nervous when coming to jail but that his demeanor was typical of most new inmates.

Asked whether Holmes otherwise displayed odd behavior, Frank said, “nothing out of the ordinary.”

The defense then called a psychiatrist who interviewed Holmes less than a week after the shooting.

But before Dr. Jonathan Woodcock could explain his thoughts on Holmes, prosecutors spent more than an hour questioning his credibility as a forensic psychiatrist. Prosecutors pointed out that psychosis is not Woodcock’s main area of study or teaching and that he had testified just once in the last 15 years in a criminal case. He was ultimately allowed to testify as an expert.

Woodcock was one of at least two mental health experts that the defense planned to call to counter conclusions by two other psychiatrists who examined Holmes in the months and years after the shooting and concluded he was sane during the attack.

Holmes’ attorneys have argued that his mental decline was far greater than the state doctors knew, in part because those doctors analyzed him much later after the attack.

Defense attorneys say Holmes suffered from schizophrenia and was in the grips of a psychotic episode so severe it rendered him unable to tell right from wrong — Colorado’s standard for an insanity verdict.

If jurors agree, Holmes would be committed to a state mental hospital indefinitely.

The insanity defense is successful in only about 25 percent of felony trials in which it is raised nationally, and the odds are worse in a high-profile homicide.

In Colorado, prosecutors have the burden of proof in insanity cases. Most states and the federal system place that burden on defendants.

The defense case also is critical because jurors can use information they hear in the verdict phase if the trial advances to a sentencing phase. Studies show that jurors often enter a penalty phase with their minds made up about an appropriate sentence, even though they are instructed not to do so.

“The defense is going to say, ‘There’s no question he was able to inflict a ton of carnage here, but do we give society’s harshest sentence to someone who is severely mentally ill?'” said George H. Kendall, who has handled other high-profile death-penalty cases.

NEW YORK (AP) — Marriott is getting into the music business, so to speak.

The chain said Thursday it is linking up with Universal Music Group in a partnership in which some of the music conglomerate’s top stars will perform at Marriott hotels, as well as other branding opportunities.

It’s the latest move as various hotel chains join with music stars to lure guests with special concerts and events with top acts for its rewards members.

Marriott is going one step further with what it calls a “first-of-its-kind” partnership with Universal, whose acts range from Kanye West, U2, Taylor Swift and Sam Smith, to hold concerts, offer music downloads, video series, concert tickets and other incentives. Marriott is also offering members special VIP opportunities without requiring them to cash in their points.

The partnership kicks off next week as Jessie J performs at the St. Pancras Renaissance London Hotel.

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Online:

http://www.marriott.com

NEW YORK (AP) — Marriott is getting into the music business, so to speak.

The chain said Thursday it is linking up with Universal Music Group in a partnership in which some of the music conglomerate’s top stars will perform at Marriott hotels, as well as other branding opportunities.

It’s the latest move as various hotel chains join with music stars to lure guests with special concerts and events with top acts for its rewards members.

Marriott is going one step further with what it calls a “first-of-its-kind” partnership with Universal, whose acts range from Kanye West, U2, Taylor Swift and Sam Smith, to hold concerts, offer music downloads, video series, concert tickets and other incentives. Marriott is also offering members special VIP opportunities without requiring them to cash in their points.

The partnership kicks off next week as Jessie J performs at the St. Pancras Renaissance London Hotel.

———

Online:

http://www.marriott.com

CAIRO (AP) — Journalists face unprecedented threats in President Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi’s Egypt, a watchdog group said Thursday, with the highest number behind bars since it began keeping records in 1990.

In a report detailing the incarceration of 18 Egyptians, the New York-based Committee to Protect Journalists said most were accused of affiliation with the now-outlawed Muslim Brotherhood of ousted Islamist President Mohammed Morsi.

It said the threat of imprisonment in Egypt is part of a stifling atmosphere in which authorities pressure media outlets to censor critical voices and issue gag orders on sensitive topics. It said el-Sissi has invoked national security to trample on liberties.

“CPJ spoke to high-level officials, including the prosecutor-general and the minister of transitional justice, who denied that Egypt was holding any journalists in jail in relation to their work,” the group said in the report, which was based on a June 1 census of Egyptian prisons. “But CPJ research shows that the government of el-Sissi … has used the pretext of national security to crack down on human rights, including press freedom.”

As army chief, el-Sissi overthrew Morsi in 2013 during massive protests against his rule, before winning a landslide election last year. Since the overthrow, authorities have waged a massive crackdown on the Muslim Brotherhood and other opponents, killing hundreds, jailing thousands and sparking a backlash of attacks against security forces, mostly in the restive Sinai Peninsula. Activists say dozens more journalists have been detained.

Cases detailed in the report show that most were jailed for covering protests, airing views contrary to the government or reporting on injustices committed against people affiliated with the Brotherhood, which Egypt considers a terrorist organization.

Several stand accused of “spreading chaos,” while others are charged with disseminating “false news” or anti-government messages.

In one case highlighted in the report, Mahmoud Abou-Zeid was arrested in August 2013 while taking photographs of the violent dispersal of a pro-Morsi sit-in, in which hundreds of Islamists were killed. He has been in pre-trial detention since then and has not been formally charged.

“I spoke with him last week and he was tired and depressed,” his brother, Mohamed, told The Associated Press. “We don’t know what will happen next and have no information regarding the future of the case. It is a very difficult situation for all of us.”

In another case, photographer Omar Abdel-Maksoud was arrested in 2014 while covering a baby shower for a woman who had been detained and forced to give birth in a hospital in handcuffs. Police launched a violent raid on the gathering, the report said, citing local media.

CPJ cited cases of journalists disappearing into Egypt’s labyrinth of detention facilities without lawyers or family members knowing where they are, with court hearings sometimes taking place without their knowledge.

It said the heavy restrictions meant that scarce information emerges from entire regions, especially Sinai, where militant groups are fighting security forces and little is known about the conflict’s toll on civilians. One journalist from the area, Saeed Abuhaj, was arrested for carrying a leaflet bearing Brotherhood slogans, his lawyer said. He has been charged with inciting violence and using weapons against police.

Several high-profile cases involving the state’s campaign against journalists have garnered international attention, most recently that of Ahmed Mansour, a journalist for Qatar-based broadcaster Al-Jazeera, who was stopped in Germany when officers there acted on an Egyptian arrest warrant.

After detaining him last weekend, German prosecutors decided Monday to free him and not pursue his extradition to Egypt, where he was convicted in 2011 on torture charges he denies. CPJ and France’s Reporters Without Borders criticized the detention.

Al-Jazeera has been a particular focus for Egypt following Morsi’s overthrow, since the current government sees it as a mouthpiece for the Brotherhood. Three journalists from its English-language channel are being retried on charges of being part of a terrorist group and airing falsified footage. One of the three, Australian journalist Peter Greste, has been deported.

The Obama administration has harshly criticized Egypt’s restrictions on free speech and the arrests of political dissidents, citing a “steadily shrinking space for political dissent.” But Washington has continued to provide Cairo with some $1.3 billion in annual military aid after briefly suspending it following Morsi’s ouster.

Egypt’s first freely elected president, Morsi was recently sentenced to death in connection with a mass prison break during the 2011 uprising that toppled longtime autocrat Hosni Mubarak.

An Egyptian journalist not cited in the report said he and others, especially videographers and photographers, are regularly targeted when they cover Brotherhood-affiliated protests. He spoke on condition of anonymity for fear of repercussions.

“They raided my family’s apartment looking for me six times since 2013, and this month they smashed up a lot of furniture,” he said, adding that he has been staying with friends.

“My work is a blessing and a curse — I’m living on the run.”