Report: Donald Trump Invited Himself To Yankees 1st Pitch ... Jealous Of Fauci?

Donald Trump reportedly invited himself to throw out a first pitch at Yankees Stadium in a fit of jealousy over Dr. Anthony Fauci ... and was forced to cancel on it all when he couldn't actually make it happen.

Multiple sources familiar with the situation told The New York Times that's how things went down when POTUS made the surprising announcement last week that he'd throw out a ceremonial first pitch for the Yanks on Aug. 15.

PRESIDENTIAL PITCH
CSPAN

Per the report, Trump was so bothered by the attention Fauci was getting in the leadup to his first pitch at Nationals Park on Opening Day last Thursday that he informed staffers to call the Yanks to get him on the mound.

The NYT says BOTH the Yankees and White House personnel were surprised by Trump's wishes ... and never officially locked in a date despite Trump saying they had.

Of course, Donald -- who was reportedly already booked elsewhere for Aug. 15 -- pulled out of the event just days after the announcement ... saying in a tweet his focus on the coronavirus wouldn't allow him to make it.

Trump added, "We will make it later in the season!"

Donald has never thrown out a first pitch since taking over office in 2016 ... but the Times says he DOES have a longstanding informal offer from the Yankees' team president to throw one out for them at some point.

Trump has consistently said he used to be a hell of a baseball player -- saying he had pro potential back in his younger days -- though video of his time on the diamond has yet to surface.

Dr. Anthony Fauci Infamous 1st Pitch Gets Topps Trading Card Treatment

2:24 PM PT -- Good news for Fauci card collectors ... the moment will NOT be remembered as the worst ceremonial first pitch of all-time, so says fellow terrible first-pitch thrower Akbar Gbaja-Biamila.

That honor, according to the former NFL player who once embarrassed himself on a mound in Philadelphia, belongs to 50 Cent.

I'M OFF THE HOOK!
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"It goes 50," Akbar tells TMZ Sports. "Then right under 50 is Dr. Fauci."

It's tough to argue ... check out 50's infamous first pitch in New York back in 2014 -- gotta rank worse than Fauci's, right?!

Dr. Anthony Fauci's hilarious ceremonial first pitch will be forever immortalized in the baseball world ... with the moment getting its own trading card!!

Topps just launched the card for a limited time ... showing the COVID-19 expert mid-throw before the Nationals' Opening Day game against the New York Yankees.

Of course, we all know how it went down ... but the card actually makes the dude look a bit more like Max Scherzer -- talk about a good angle!!

7/23/20
WORTH A TRY
Courtesy of MLB

The card also features some info on the Doc ... saying, "Dr. Anthony Fauci, longtime Director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases and ardent Washington Nationals fan, signaled the official start of the 2020 MLB regular season by throwing out the first pitch before the Nationals took on the Yankees on Thursday evening."

"The 79-year-old Brooklyn native, donning a Nationals jersey, hat and facemask, fired a strong effort to the plate before the Nationals took the field."

Very generous of Topps to call it a "strong effort" ... we're just teasing.

Of course, the Dr. Fauci collectibles have skyrocketed during the pandemic -- from doughnuts to beer to bobbleheads.

The card will be available on Topps' website for just 24 hours ... so all you Fauci fanatics better hop on it!!

Originally Published -- 10:10 AM PT

Andrew McCutchen Calls For Yanks To Nix Haircut Policy ... 'Needs To Be Addressed'

Former NL MVP Andrew McCutchen says the Yankees need to consider dropping their haircut policy ASAP ... saying straight-up, "There should be some change there in the future."

The Yanks have a long-standing rule where players CANNOT grow facial hair or have their hair length go below their jersey's collar ... and when Cutch was asked about that this weekend, he said ain't in love with the policy.

The Philadelphia Phillies outfielder -- who played 25 games for the Yankees in 2018 -- said on "The Sports Bubble with Jensen Karp" it's just not right ... especially in today's climate.

"I think -- especially in this year, the year of 2020," McCutchen said, "I just feel like these things should be things that people take at heart and realize we have a way of expressing ourselves in different ways."

McCutchen -- who gained fame early in his career for his signature dreads -- had cut his hair prior to joining the Yankees in '18 ... but he was still forced to shave his beard when he arrived nonetheless.

Andrew says he had a hell of a time playing for NYY, even calling it "an honor" ... but the 33-year-old made it clear, he feels the team's hair policy should be nixed.

"I definitely do think it takes away from our individualism," McCutchen said.

The call for the Bronx Bombers to change their rule comes on the heels of the Cleveland Indians saying they're looking into changing their team name over inclusivity concerns as well.

Yankees Pitcher Masahiro Tanaka Beaned Hard in the Head ... By Stanton's Line Drive

The Yankees' truncated season got off to a rough start this weekend during batting practice -- one of their pitchers took a baseball to the noggin by one their hardest-hitting sluggers.

Righty Masahiro Tanaka was tossing to Giancarlo Stanton Saturday at Yankees Stadium during the team's first summer workout before they officially play ball later this month. During one of his pitches, Stanton hit a line drive right back at Tanaka ... and it nailed him.

The ball struck Tanaka in the head, knocking off his hat and sending him flying to the ground. Stanton immediately regretted it as he crouched in disgust and worry. The training staff rushed out to attend to their pitcher, and were eventually able to get him to his feet.

As bad as the hit looked on camera, it would appear the guy's gonna be alright -- which is kind of a miracle. The team says, "RHP Masahiro Tanaka was hit in the head with a line drive during today’s sim game. He is currently alert, responsive and walking under his own power." They added that he would undergo further evaluations/testing at a nearby hospital.

Here's hoping Tanaka comes out the other end good as new -- he's one of their starting pitchers, and the Yanks need as much depth as they can get this year.

Aroldis Chapman Cops Insane Custom Kevlar-Coated Jeep ... $150,000!!!

Aroldis Chapman now has an insane ride to go with baseball's best fastball -- the MLB star just copped a ludicrous custom 6-wheeled Jeep ... that's covered in Kevlar coating!!!

TMZ Sports has learned the New York Yankees closer hit up South Florida Jeeps in Ft. Lauderdale about two months ago to get the custom whip made -- and it came out SICK!!!

Check out the pic of the ridiculous car ... we're told by shop honcho Joseph Ghattas it started out as a cut-in-half Jeep -- and it was all custom built by hand from there.

The ride has 600 horsepower, features blood-red interior from top to bottom ... and according to Ghattas, it's not only "unstuckable" while off-road, it vapor trails down highways as well!!

All told, Ghattas says the project took about 60 days to complete ... and cost Chapman right around $150,000 -- a small price to pay for a dude who just signed a 3-year, $48 MILLION contract with the NYY.

As for Chapman's reaction when he picked up the new whip this week ... Ghattas says he LOVED the creation -- saying, "He doesn't speak a whole lot of English, but 'f**king awesome' is pretty universal!"

#BALLER!!!

Aaron Judge's GF DUI Arrest Video ... 'Do You Know Who My Boyfriend Is?!?'

"DO YOU UNDERSTAND WHAT YOU'RE DOING?"
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Aaron Judge's GF brought up her relationship with the Yankees star during a DUI arrest in February ... straight-up asking officers during the stop, "Do you know who my boyfriend is?!"

It's all in new police video obtained by TMZ Sports ... which shows Judge's longtime GF, Samantha Bracksieck, name-dropping the NYY outfielder several times to arresting officers.

And, spoiler alert ... it didn't go so well for her.

Here's the deal ... the 26-year-old was pulled over at around midnight on Feb. 25 in Scottsdale, AZ after cops say they spotted her driving without her headlights on.

During questioning ... video shows she admitted to an officer she drank two glasses of wine at Mastro's Steakhouse before getting behind the wheel.

When cops suspected her of being too drunk to drive ... they put her through field sobriety tests and administered a breathalyzer. And, after they say she bombed the tests and blew a .12 ... they put the cuffs on her.

That's when Samantha became standoffish toward officers ... telling them, "Do you understand what you're doing right now?"

"I just need to get home," she added. "Do you know who my boyfriend is?!"

The officers responded, "We don't."

"This is going to be bad for me," Sam continued. "I'm just saying that right now."

Officers didn't even ask a follow-up and put her in the back of a squad car ... but that's when she pulled the Judge card a few more times to another cop.

"My boyfriend is not in a spot where I should be, like, having this happen," Bracksieck said. "He's like a public figure. So, like, me being arrested for, like, having two glasses of wine is not okay."

Bracksieck continued, "My boyfriend is in the spotlight of New York media in general. And, now here I am handcuffed here in Arizona ... like, that is not good."

The cop clearly didn't care all that much ... and eventually took Bracksieck to the station, where officers say in the police report they tested her breath two more times -- claiming she blew a .169 and .181.

Prosecutors ultimately hit Samantha with five charges over the incident, including extreme DUI -- which is classified as a BAC of .15-.19.

Samantha -- who's due in court for a hearing on the case in June -- is facing jail time and fines if she's convicted.

We've reached out to Bracksieck and the Yankees for comment ... but so far, no word back yet.

NY Yankees Co-Owner Hank Steinbrenner Dead At 63

9:05 AM PT -- The Steinbrenner family released a statement through the Yankees Tuesday morning ... remembering Hank as a "genuine and gentle spirit."

"He was introduced to the Yankees organization at a very young age, and his love for sports and competition continued to burn brightly throughout his life."

The statement continued ... "Hank could be direct and outspoken, but in the very same conversation show great tenderness and light-heartedness. More than anything, he set an example for all of us in how comfortably he lived enjoying his personal passions and pursuits. We are profoundly saddened to have lost him and will carry his memory with us always.”

New York Yankees co-owner Hank Steinbrenner has died, his family confirmed. He was 63.

Hank had been battling an illness for a while -- but according to the NY Post, it was NOT related to COVID-19.

Steinbrenner was reportedly surrounded by family at his home in Clearwater, Florida when he passed. Hank is survived by his brother, Hal, and their two sisters, Jennifer and Jessica. He also has 4 children with his ex-wife.

Hank famously took over much of the ownership duties after his father, George Steinbrenner, passed away in 2010. In recent years, his brother, Hal, has taken over the role of "boss."

But, while Hank was in charge, he was known for being big and brash like his dad -- never afraid to speak his mind in public.

In fact, Hank famously made headlines back in 2008 when he took aim at the rival, Boston Red Sox.

"Red Sox Nation?" What a bunch of bush*t that is," Steinbrenner told The New York Times' Play magazine.

"That was a creation of the Red Sox and ESPN, which is filled with Red Sox fans.

"Go anywhere in America and you won't see Red Sox hats and jackets, you'll see Yankee hats and jackets. This is a Yankee country. We're going to put the Yankees back on top and restore the universe to order."

Funny, we feel like that's the quote Hank would want to end this post -- so we'll leave it at that.

RIP

Originally published -- 8:24 AM PT

Lou Gehrig Bat Sells For $1 Million At Auction 'One Of Lou's Favorites'

One of the first bats used in Lou Gehrig's Hall of Fame career has a new owner ... and the going price was a staggering $1 MILLION!!

Heritage Auctions tells TMZ Sports ... Gehrig first started using the bat during his college days at Columbia University -- and continued to use it with the Hartford Senators and earliest New York Yankees days.

The Hillerich & Bradsby stick features Gehrig's last name in block letters on the side of the bat ... as well as a message from the manufacturer, "40 oz., Lou Gehrig, 4-22-25."

The bat was NOT made on 04/22/25 ... we're told the date represents when Gehrig brought the bat back to the factory to have duplicates made.

“It was one of Gehrig’s favorite bats and one he likely used over several seasons," Chris Ivy of Heritage says. "I believe that it’s the most significant Gehrig bat in the hobby."

Of course, as TMZ Sports previously reported ... old bats that used to belong to legends sell for INSANE prices ... with Babe Ruth's 500th home run bat going for more than $1 million.

Final price tag for Gehrig's bat?? $1,025,000.

No word on who the lucky buyer is ... but they just got an AWESOME piece of sports history.

Yankees' Luke Voit Gerrit Cole Got Me 'Something Cool' ... For Jersey Swap

BASEBALL BROS
TMZSports.com

Luke Voit didn't have to give away his number to Gerrit Cole for free ... the NY Yankees stud tells TMZ Sports the team's new ace coughed over a SOLID prize for No. 45!!

"He hooked me up with something cool," Voit said.

Luke rocked the digits the past two seasons in New York ... but when Cole came over on a 9-year, $324 MILLION deal in free agency -- he asked the 29-year-old first baseman for the uni.

Turns out, Voit says Cole didn't come empty-handed either!!

As for what he got, Voit -- who ended up switching to No. 59 -- tells us he can't say exactly ... but did joke, "I should've had him buy me a house or something. Or, a car."

We also talked to Voit about his superhuman strength -- remember, the guy benched a 145-pound barbell with ONE ARM in 2018 -- and he tells us he's the strongest guy on the team.

In fact, he says his 2-rep max on the bench press is 365!!!

By the way, Luke also spoke with us about his new children's book, "Luke's Baseball Story" ... and the story sounds SUPER-cool.

SHARING MY STORY
TMZSports.com

Yankees' Aaron Judge Diagnosed With Broken Rib ... Could Need Bone Removed

Horrible news for Yankees fans ... NY manager Aaron Boone announced superstar slugger Aaron Judge has a broken rib that could require surgery to remove the bone altogether.

Judge hasn't played at all this spring ... and, finally, on Friday, Boone revealed why -- telling reporters, "He has a stress fracture of the first right rib."

FYI, that's a bone located near the upper chest/shoulder area ... and Boone says if a couple weeks of rest doesn't help heal it, Judge could have a procedure to take the rib out of his body.

"You could do surgery at some point to remove the rib," Boone says. "I wouldn't say that's off the table."

But, the Yanks manager is hopeful some good R&R will help ... although he said there's no timetable at all for any decision on Judge's injury just yet.

Boone says the team thinks Judge suffered the injury way back in September ... when the 27-year-old dove for a ball in the outfield.

It's a terrible break for the Bronx Bombers ... Judge is one of the league's brightest young stars -- he hit .272 with 27 home runs in just 102 games last season.

The Yanks open the 2020 season on March 26 against the Baltimore Orioles.

Yankees' Domingo German Involved In Car Crash In D.R. ... Says Aaron Boone

Suspended Yankees star pitcher Domingo German was involved in a car crash in the Dominican Republic on Thursday ... NY manager Aaron Boone confirmed.

The right-hander was NOT, however, injured ... Boone says.

"Germán is fine," the Yanks head man told reporters at NY's spring camp. "He was in the car, in the back seat on the driver's side. He's been to the complex in the D.R., he's been checked over, and he's fine.”

German has been training in the DR away from his Yanks teammates in Florida, because he's still in the middle of an 81-game suspension he was hit with for violating the MLB's domestic violence policy last year.

It's unclear if others were injured in the accident -- Yankees officials have still not released a formal statement on the matter.

German was a STUD for the Yanks in 2019 before his ban, going 18-4 with a 4.03 ERA. He's eligible to return to the team's roster in June.

Derek Jeter MLB Debut Jersey Sells for $369K!!! ... From 1995 Season

Derek Jeter's New York Yankees jersey from the legendary shortstop's FIRST Major League Baseball game just sold for $369,000 ... a record-setting sale price!!

21-year-old Jeter made his debut for the Yankees on May 29, 1995 ... when the Bronx Bombers took on the Mariners at the Kingdome in Seattle.

DJ batted 9th in the order ... and went 0-for-5 with a strikeout. The Yankees lost the game 8-7.

The NYY grey road uniform that DJ wore was recently put on the auction block at Goldin Auctions ... where a (very rich) fan paid $369k.

The uni is signed by Jeter ... and is also inscribed with "Game Used, 5-29-95 MLB Debut".

Jeter only played 14 more games in the '95 season ... and didn't have much success. He hit .250 with no home runs and 11 strikeouts.

But, EVERYTHING changed the next year -- Jeter became a superstar in 1996 ... hitting .314, batting in 78 runs and winning the A.L. Rookie of the Year.

Jeets also helped lead the Yankees to their 1st title in almost 20 years ... his 1st of 5 titles.

Derek ended up playing in over 2,700 games in his legendary career -- and was recently voted into the Baseball Hall of Fame.

Giancarlo Stanton Bench Presses Adriana Lima ... Insane Workout Video!!!

TIME UNDER TENSION

Talk about the ultimate flex ... Giancarlo Stanton showed off ALL of his muscles in front of smokin' hot model Adriana Lima -- BY BENCH PRESSING HER!!!

The video of the Yankees superstar in the gym is insane ... he laid down on his back, grabbed Lima by the legs and the armpit -- and benched her AT LEAST 4 times!!!

It's unclear why a normal barbell and plates weren't enough for the outfielder ... but Lima sure seemed to dig it -- the supermodel was smiling the whole time!!

Of course, the feat ain't exactly tough for Stanton ... he's known as the strongest guy in the league -- so benchin' a former Victoria's Secret model was clearly NBD.

But, just to prove the guy could still lift some serious weights ... he showed off his skills with a hammer and a tire -- and yeah, dude's got the muscles!!

SMASHIN' TIRES

Seems clear all the injuries that bothered Stanton during the 2019 season are now behind him ... which means, heads up, Red Sox.

Rich Eisen Rips HOF Voter Who Snubbed Jeter 'You Have a Screw Loose!!!'

WHO IN THE WORLD!?
TMZSports.com

"Whoever does not think Derek Jeter is Hall of Fame worthy -- you gotta check yourself because you have a screw loose!"

That's Rich Eisen PERFECTLY explaining the issues he's got with the one HOF voter who snubbed Derek Jeter ... leaving the Yankees legend one vote shy of being a unanimous pick.

"Who the hell is the ONE guy?!" Eisen said ... "I need that guy or lady to present themselves."

Hey, Eisen's not the only person who feels this way -- a LOT of baseball folks believe the anti-Jeter voter is just being a jerkwad for no reason.

After all, Jeter's resume is pretty outstanding ... 14-time All-Star, 5 World Series rings, World Series MVP, 5 Gold Gloves, 5 Silver Sluggers and he's 6th all-time in career hits in MLB history.

Jeter was looking to become the second unanimous HOF entry in history. The only person to get 100% of the vote is Derek's longtime Yankees teammate Mariano Rivera, who did it last year.

SO, WHO ARE YOU, ANGRY HOF VOTER?! SHOW YOURSELF!!!

... probably a Red Sox fan.

Yankees' Domingo German Suspended 81 Games After Dom. Violence Probe

New York Yankees pitcher Domingo German was just hit with an 81-game suspension ... this after the MLB concluded its investigation into allegations he committed domestic violence.

German was placed on administrative leave back in September after Major League Baseball was notified the 27-year-old had allegedly been involved in an altercation with his significant other.

Details of the allegations are unclear -- no police report was ever filed -- but what is known is the MLB clearly found the accusations to be credible.

"Having reviewed all of the available evidence," commissioner Rob Manfred said Thursday, "I have concluded that Mr. German violated our Policy and that discipline is appropriate."

According to the MLB, German will NOT appeal the punishment ... and has agreed to make a contribution to "Sanctuary for Families" -- a New York-area charity helping victims of domestic violence -- in addition to serving the ban.

Per multiple reports, the 81-game suspension is one of the most aggressive penalties EVER levied against an MLB player for dom. violence.

The suspension is retroactive ... meaning since German missed 18 games for the alleged incident in 2019, he'll only be required to sit the first 63 games of next season.

"Domestic violence — in any form — is a gravely serious matter that affects every segment of our society," the Yankees said in a statement. "Major League Baseball has taken the lead in our industry to make domestic violence awareness and prevention a priority, and we will continue to back those efforts."

"We are encouraged by Domingo’s acceptance of his discipline, and we sincerely hope this indicates a commitment to making a meaningful and positive change in his personal conduct."

German was a star for the Yanks this past year, winning 18 games with 153 strikeouts in 143 innings.

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