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Justin Verlander

Uber Says Sorry, Bro ...

You Get Screwed by Price Boost Too

12/18/2014 1:15 PM PST BY TMZ STAFF
breaking news

1218_justin_verlander_uber_gettyHey, Justin Verlander ... SUCK IT UP -- that's what Uber is telling the Detroit Tigers ace after he bitched to the world about holiday price surges -- and threatened to jump to the competition.

Verlander fired the first salvo with his Instagram post ... "@Uber I used to love you and now your ridiculous surge charges are causing me to take my talents elsewhere. #lyft."

Now, Uber is responding, telling Verlander ... "Surge pricing encourages drivers to get on the road when demand is high. As soon as things even out, pricing will lower." In other words: too bad, so sad.

They didn't even mention the fact JV is it he middle of a 7-year, $180 million contract -- and is probably the last person who should be complaining about a little extra coinage.

AND he gets to ride Kate Upton -- and therefore wins ... no matter what.

Babe Ruth

SIX-FIGURES for Ultra-Rare Cap ...

Original Jordans Auctioned Too

12/18/2014 6:20 AM PST BY TMZ STAFF
EXCLUSIVE

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Babe Ruth's game-worn baseball cap from a 1934 barnstorming trip to Japan just hauled in an amazing $303,277 in an auction ... TMZ Sports has learned. 

No, it's not gold-leafed or anything, but it did sit on the Babe's skull while he did some diplomatic work for the U.S. He was part of an American all-star team sent to Japan in 1934 to play 18 exhibition games.

The games were supposed to ease rising tensions between the U.S. and Japan, but failed. See WWII.

We're told the ball cap remained with the Ruth family until 30 years ago ... then changed hands twice ... before landing on the block this morning at Grey Flannel Auctions.

Another sports legend fetched big dollars too -- an original pair of Jordan's ... just not Air Jordans.
The CONVERSE shoes MJ wore during his '81-'82 season at UNC went to the top bidder for $33,378! 

We're told the winning bidders on both items want to remain anonymous.

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Ex-MLB Star Brad Halsey

NO BOOZE or DRUGS

At Time of Mysterious Death

12/17/2014 4:30 PM PST BY TMZ STAFF
EXCLUSIVE

1217-bradford-halsey-getty-01Former baseball star Brad Halsey was clean and sober when he fell more than 100 feet to his death in a remote area of Texas ... TMZ Sports has learned.

Halsey died on Halloween from blunt force trauma ... according to the docs we obtained. Sheriff's deputies in Halsey's hometown of New Braunsfels, TX say he either jumped or fell off the cliff which was on private property.

The autopsy report says Halsey's body was screened for a slew of drugs, including ... opiates, cocaine, oxycodone, barbiturates, amphetamines, marijuana, benzodiazepines ... and many more -- but pathologists found nothing. Same result for alcohol.

Halsey had pitched for the Yankees, Diamondbacks, and A's. In 2006, he famously gave up Barry Bonds' 714th career home run ... tying Babe Ruth for #2 on the all-time list

Oscar Taveras

Cards Fan Giving Up Memorabilia Stash

To Help Oscar's Family

12/17/2014 12:45 AM PST BY TMZ STAFF
EXCLUSIVE

Oscar Taveras Memorabilia AuctionThe family of late Cardinals outfielder Oscar Taveras has some cash headed their way ... all thanks to a longtime fan who's auctioning off his treasured souvenirs. 

Taveras got his first taste of the majors this season, but he made a huge impression on a Cards fan. TMZ Sports has learned the guy -- who wants to remain anonymous -- bought a bunch of Taveras memorabilia ... just one day before the 22-year-old died in a car accident.

We're told the items include -- Oscar's first home run ball, cleats from his first big league game, and a game worn post-season jersey ... all autographed and going up for auction.

We're told the fan decided to unload the merch through Goldin Auctions -- so he can donate all the profits to Oscar's family in the Dominican Republic. The auction will open on January 12th.

There's a reason Cardinals fans are known as the best in baseball.

Mike Piazza

Kerry Collins Had a Cannon

... Threw 'Scary' Hard

12/15/2014 12:35 AM PST BY TMZ STAFF
EXCLUSIVE

121214_mike_piazza_launch_v2Kerry Collins couldn't just sling a football ... the former NFL quarterback had a GUN as a pitcher too ... so says Mike Piazza

Mike was out in NYC when we asked if there were any athletes who impressed him with during the ceremonial first pitch over the years. 

That's when Mike brought up the ex-Carolina Panthers QB -- who said he fired the ball so hard back in the day, it actually scared him when he was behind the plate. 

FYI -- Collins was drafted by the Detroit Tigers the 26th round of the 1990 MLB draft ... but decided to go to Penn St. instead where he excelled on the football field.

Dodgers Star Adrian Gonzalez

Puig Puts Ketchup on Sushi

... For Real!

12/10/2014 6:15 AM PST BY TMZ STAFF
EXCLUSIVE

121014_adrian_gonzalez_launchThey say you shouldn't knock something 'til you try it ... but this sounds gross -- Yasiel Puig puts KETCHUP on his sushi.

Ketchup. And raw fish. Together. 

At least, that's what Puig's L..A Dodgers teammate Adrian Gonzalez told us last night when we asked if anyone on the Blue Crew had any weird superstitions or habits before a game.

But after some brief Internet research, it appears Puig's not alone in his big red habit ... in fact, one food blog praised the combo as a "hidden culinary connection."

So, you gonna try it or what?

Yasiel Puig

Dominates 24th Bday Party

... With Huge Hip Hop Stars

12/9/2014 5:24 PM PST BY TMZ STAFF
Exclusive Details

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Yasiel Pui
g's legendary partying ways don't ever take an off-season -- 'cause the Dodgers superstar got crazy for his 24th birthday this weekend, turning up with some huge stars at a Miami club.

It all went down at Liv ... where Puig and his buddies rubbed elbows with some of the biggest names in hip hop including DiddyDJ Khaled (also celebrating a birthday), Rick Ross and Miguel

But despite the competition, our sources tell us Puig outpartied EVERYONE ... slamming Hennessey (dat Hen Dog) with his pals all night long. 

As one source put it ... "They shut the club down."

Fun Fact -- Drake would have been at the party (thrown by Mike Gardner & Headliner Marketing Group) ... but Diddy socked him in the face outside the club as Drake was trying to walk in. 

Bummer man.  

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MLB Star Pablo Sandoval

Drops $200,000

On Pimp'd Out Range Rover

12/7/2014 12:35 AM PST BY TMZ STAFF
EXCLUSIVE

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Pablo Sandoval's sick car collection just got $200,000 sicker ... 'cause the S.F. Giants super star just tricked out his brand new Range Rover ... and TMZ Sports has the footage. 

Sandoval took his '14 Avorza Range Rover Sport to The Auto Firm in Miami ... where they hooked it up with a Lumma wide body kit and 22-inch Avorza AV7 rims.  

We spoke with Auto Firm honcho Alex Vega -- who's done work for stars like Yasiel Puig and Hanley Ramirez -- who tells us Sandoval owns several Range Rovers ... but wanted this one to stand out. 

Check out the clip of Sandoval seeing his ride for the first time -- you can tell he's fired up ... and says it's his "favorite" of all his whips.

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Yankees Star CC Sabathia

CHILL STEINBRENNERS

I'll Kill My Beard Before the Season!

12/4/2014 9:45 AM PST BY TMZ STAFF
EXCLUSIVE

120414_cc_sabathia_launchIt's one of the most famous Yankees rules ... NO BEARDS DURING THE SEASON!!!

But with star pitcher CC Sabathia, who's growing out his whiskers in the off-season, we had to ask the 34-year-old if he was planning to rage against the machine this year ... and fight to keep his face warmer when it's time to put on the pinstripes.  

Don't worry Steinbrenners, Sabathia told us he's gonna play by the family rules ... even though he likes his new scruff. 

There have been rumblings over the years that the Yanks would consider reversing the follicle ban -- but team officials have shot down the rumors every time.

MLB Star Andrew McCutchen

GETS MARRIED

After 'Ellen' Proposal

11/24/2014 8:08 AM PST BY TMZ STAFF
EXCLUSIVE

1124_Andrew-Mccutchen_maria_hansloven_instagramPittsburgh Pirates superstar Andrew McCutchen is a MARRIED MAN ... one year after proposing to his girlfriend Maria Hanslovan on "Ellen" ... TMZ Sports has learned. 



The two were married in a ceremony on November 22nd ... they reportedly picked the date because of Andrew's jersey number ... 22.

When he proposed, Andrew told Maria ... "I did this to show you that ... If I could tell the whole world how much I love you, I would do that."

Obviously, she said yes and this weekend ... they finally swapped "I dos." 

And to prove it's official ... Maria already changed her last name on her Twitter account to McCutchen!!!

Congrats!!! 

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Jose Canseco

My Finger Didn't Fall Off ...

It Was A PRANK!!

11/20/2014 12:25 AM PST BY TMZ STAFF
EXCLUSIVE

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The mangled finger that "fell off" Jose Canseco's hand during a poker game WILL NOT be popping up on eBay -- 'cause the whole thing was a giant prank ... TMZ Sports has learned.

As we previously reported ... the former baseball star blew off part of his finger last month while cleaning a gun -- but got it reconnected in surgery.

Last week, Jose claimed the reattached digit went rogue ... tweeting, "I was playing in a poker tournament last night and my finger fell off."

Disgusting. Funny. And totally untrue. Jose now admits it was a HOAX.

We contacted Canseco about video he says he shot of the finger fail -- and when push came to shove ... he had to cop to the prank. Jose says he cooked up the plan when he came across the fake finger in a Halloween store.

As for the eBay auction he was pimping on Twitter -- sorry, sickos ... the real deal's still attached.

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Derek Jeter

Vegas Reunion with an Ex-GF!

Not Her, Or Her, Or Her ...

11/19/2014 3:15 PM PST BY TMZ STAFF
Exclusive Details

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When you've banged as many chicks as Derek Jeter ... running into exes becomes an occupational hazard, and Tuesday night it was Jessica Alba's turn for the awkward moment.

Jeter and Alba were both guest speakers at the Goldman Sachs technology conference in Las Vegas. Jeter was there for his new website (theplayerstribune.com) and Alba was talking about her Honest Company baby products.

The after party went down at Hyde Bellagio Nightclub -- and sources inside tell us Jessica and Derek did have a 10-minute chat while they were there. Nothing hot and heavy, we're told ... just enough to talk about her kids and his retirement. 

Still ... Cash Warren and Hannah Davis can't be thrilled.

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Giancarlo Stanton

Parties with $20k Champagne

After Signing $325 Mil Contract!

11/18/2014 8:00 AM PST BY TMZ STAFF
Exclusive Details

1118_Giancarlo_Stanton_moet_Champagne_launch-Hours after Giancarlo Stanton signed his brand new $325 MILLION contract, the MLB superstar HIT THE CLUB and partied with a $20,000 bottle of champagne ... and TMZ Sports has the pics.

The Miami Marlins outfielder hit up FDR at the Delano Hotel in Miami .. where he was seen raging around 3 AM Tuesday morning with his boys ... and some very attractive ladies.

But the best part of the night ... when the guy who just signed the LARGEST sports contract in American history was GIFTED a $20k bottle of rare champagne.

It's called Moët Nectar Impérial Rosé Leopard Luxury Edition Methuselah -- and the 6 liter bottle is coated in a 22-carat gold leaf. It's one of only 60 bottles ever created.

So, who paid for the bubbly? We're told it was a gift from a well-known Miami party queen named "Julz" ... who just wanted to help Giancarlo celebrate.

So, the guy with the $325 million check gets free drinks.  #RichGetRicher

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