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Starting pitcher CC Sabathia of the New York Yankees showed up to the Major League Baseball club’s spring training facility in Tampa, Florida this year weighing 305 lbs. This comes after two consecutive years of shedding excess weight before the ball season. The odd thing about the huge weight gain is that the pitcher claimed he actually gained the extra pounds on purpose for health reasons.
Also, Sabathia said baseball scouts felt he should be heavier to be a more effective pitcher even though he was concerned about his weight because of a family member who had health problems. Sabathia was relatively slim and trim last year, at least for him, but he struggled all season long. He suffered from a degenerative knee problem and only managed to start in eight games and didn’t do very well at all.
It seems that soccer is associated with the majority of weird sports stories that come across the newswire and this week was no exception. Last week we saw German Bundesliga team Borussia Dortmund temporarily close their stadium because of a bomb scare. However, this wasn’t your typical bomb scare where an opposing fan makes a phone call and claims there’s a bomb in the ground. This one was a bit different as authorities found a 550 lb. World War II bomb close to the arena and it hadn’t been exploded yet.
The local area had to be evacuated while crews tried to disarm the contraption and the team had to move its operations somewhere else for the time being. The bomb was reported to have been British and it was discovered at a construction site close to the football stadium. It was eventually defused on Feb. 26 and things were back to normal for the time being.
A pair of high school girls’ basketball teams were given the heave ho from a recent tournament after they squared off against each other and both tried to throw the game. The contest was between Smyrna High School and Riverdale High School in the state of Tennessee and it was during a District 7-AAA regional tournament. The rules of the event stated that the loser would be placed in a different bracket than Blackman High School, which is one of the top teams in the nation. Unfortunately, the winning team would likely have to face Blackman somewhere down the road.
Both Smyrna and Riverdale had been beaten by Blackman earlier on in the season and neither team liked the idea of meeting them again. Therefore, they figured the best course of action would be to lose if they had any hope of making to the finals of Region 4-AAA. The game soon became quite a farce as neither squad tried to score. Both schools missed their free throws on purpose and numerous half court and 10-second violations took place.
Nobody really expected League One’s Preston North End to upset mighty Manchester United of the English Premier League in their recent fifth-round FA Cup match in Preston. However, one of the losing side’s players did manage to earn a bonus. The third-tier squad took a 1-0 lead in the match when Scott Laird found the back of the net and fans were wondering if they could hang on for a historical upset. They couldn’t though as United stormed back for a 3-1 and a shot at home against reigning FA Cup champions Arsenal in the quarterfinals.
But Laird came out of match a pound richer courtesy of his grandmother. According to Laird, his granny has been giving him a pound for every goal he scores during his career. The trend started when Laird and his brothers were just kids and it’s continued up until now. Laird, a left-back who hails from Taunton, Somerset, told the BBC after the match, “Every time we scored as kids, she used to give me and my brothers a pound. Even though I’m 26 now, I still carry that tradition on.”
It was bound to happen sooner or later, Manny Pacquiao of the Philippines lacing up the gloves to take on American Floyd Mayweather Jr, but for boxing fans it’s coming several years too late. Mayweather will be 38 years old when the two enter the ring at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas on Saturday, May 2nd while Pacquiao will be 36. This isn’t to say that it won’t be a competitive fight, but it would have been nice to see them go at it while they were both in their prime. Mayweather has one knockout since 2007 and the last time the southpaw Pacquiao recorded one was in 2009.
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