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This Weekend in Sports: NFL Preseason Games, Night Racing and the Little League World Series

WKD Sports 8-23
Streeter Lecka, Tyler Barrick, Rob Carr / Getty Images

A busy late summer sports weekend finds a full schedule of NFL preseason games, a NASCAR night race and the Little League World Series. Here’s what to watch this weekend:

Friday, August 24

Chicago Bears at New York Giants

MetLife Stadium, East Rutherford, NJ; 8 p.m. (ET); CBS-TV

The Chicago Bears (1-1) face the New York Giants (1-1) in the third preseason game for each team. The Bears’ offensive line has looked shaky thus far, and it will get no rest against the vaunted New York pass rush. The Giants hope to develop their running game, which has been sluggish at times during the first two exhibition games.

Saturday, August 25

Little League World Series — International Championship

Lamade Stadium, Williamsport, PA; 12:30 p.m. (ET); ABC-TV

The Little League team from Tokyo, Japan awaits the winner of Thursday afternoon’s elimination game between Nuevo Laredo, Mexico and Aguadulce, Panama. The International winner advances to Sunday’s final against the US champ, while the loser will play in the consolation game.

Little League World Series — US Championship

Lamade Stadium, Williamsport, PA; 3:30 p.m. (ET); ABC-TV

The undefeated team from Goodlettsville, Tennessee will play the winner of Thursday night’s elimination game between Petaluma, California and San Antonio, Texas for the US title. The US champ plays the International victor for the Little League World Series championship on Sunday.

St. Louis Cardinals at Cincinnati Reds

Great American Ball Park, Cincinnati, OH; 4:05 p.m. (ET); FOX-TV

The St. Louis Cardinals (67-56) have used a recent hot streak to move into the second National League Wild Card spot. They’ll send Jaime Garcia (3-4, 4.00) to the mound to face the Reds’ powerful lineup, including Ryan Ludwick, Jay Bruce and rookie Todd Frazier. Mike Leake (5-8, 4.59) gets the start for Cincinnati (76-49), which leads the NL Central by eight games over the Cardinals.

Irwin Tools Night Race

Bristol Motor Speedway, Bristol, TN; 7:43 p.m. (ET); ABC-TV

Greg Biffle is back atop the points standings in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series after last Sunday’s win at Michigan. Biffle leads Roush Fenway teammate Matt Kenseth by 20 points, with Dale Earnhardt Jr. in third. All three drivers seem assured of advancing to the ‘Chase’ playoff phase of the Cup series.

Houston Texans at New Orleans Saints

Mercedes-Benz Superdome, New Orleans, LA; 8 p.m. (ET); CBS-TV

The Houston Texans (2-0) face the New Orleans Saints (1-2) in a battle of teams expected to battle for their respective division titles in 2012. Saints interim coach Joe Vitt’s defense will be challenged by top offensive talent like Houston running back Arian Foster and quarterback Matt Schaub.

Sunday, August 26

Little League World Series — Consolation and Championship Games

Lamade Stadium, Williamsport, PA; 11 a.m. (ET) ESPN-TV / 3 p.m. (ET) ABC-TV

The Little League World Series comes to a close with the consolation game followed by the championship.

Los Angeles Angels at Detroit Tigers

Comerica Park, Detroit, MI; 1:05 p.m. (ET); TBS-TV

The Los Angeles Angels (64-60) are fading in the chase for an American League playoff spot, sitting 8.5 games behind Texas in the AL West and 3.5 back of Oakland for the second Wild Card. Los Angeles will send Ervin Santana (7-10, 5.46) to the mound against a Tigers’ attack led by Prince Fielder and Miguel Cabrera. Just one game out of the Wild Card race, Detroit (66-57) will start Max Scherzer (13-6, 4.27), who leads the AL in strikeouts with 186.

San Francisco 49ers at Denver Broncos

Sports Authority Field at Mile High, Denver, CO; 4 p.m. (ET); FOX-TV

The San Francisco 49ers (1-1) roll into Denver to face the Broncos (1-1) and thier new quarterback Peyton Manning. Niners coach Jim Harbaugh is shaping his team to prove that last season’s surprise NFC title game appearance was a sign of his team’s future greatness.

Carolina Panthers at New York Jets

MetLife Stadium, East Rutherford, NJ; 8 p.m. (ET); NBC-TV

All eyes will be on the quarterbacks as Cam Newton leads the Carolina Panthers (1-1) against Rex Ryan’s Jets’ defense. New York (0-2) still plans to start Mark Sanchez at quarterback, but Tim Tebow is expected to take plenty of in-game snaps.

Atlanta Braves at San Francisco Giants

AT&T Park, San Francisco, CA; 8:05 p.m. (ET); ESPN-TV

Two National League playoff hopefuls will meet on ESPN’s ‘Sunday Night Baseball,’ as the Wild Card-leading Atlanta Braves (71-53) send veteran Tim Hudson (12-4, 3.69) out to face a Giants lineup that includes Buster Posey, Hunter Pence and Brandon Belt. San Francisco (69-55), which just swept the Dodgers to move 2.5 games ahead in the NL West, counters with Tim Lincecum (7-13, 5.30).

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