Baltiomore Star Jorge Lopez Orioles Are Legit ... 'Absolutely' W.S. Contenders!!!

LOOK OUT VEGAS
TMZSports.com

The Orioles ain't just on a hot streak -- they're real deal World Series contenders ... so says the team's star closer Jorge Lopez, who tells TMZ Sports they could "absolutely" win it all this year.

We got the flame-throwing righty out at LAX just a couple days after he dominated in the All-Star Game ... and he said straight-up, believe in the O's in the second half of the season.

"That's the mentality," said the 29-year-old, who's already notched 17 saves with a 1.62 ERA this year. "That's the mentality we want ... Just trust the process."

If Lopez is right, it could cost Las Vegas sportsbooks a fortune -- 'cause when the Orioles were stumbling at the beginning of the year, some bettors got them at 2,000-to-1 odds to win the World Series.

And, according to ESPN, that means if Lopez and the Orioles are champs by the end of the year -- it could mean a seven-figure loss for some books.

Seems Lopez doesn't care much, though -- telling us he really believes in Baltimore, which currently holds a record hovering around .500.

There's more ... Lopez also spoke with us about his ASG experience -- and whether or not his teammate, Adley Rutschman, can ultimately beat out Mariners star Julio Rodriguez for American League Rookie of the Year honors.

Braves' Ronald Acuna Jr. Meets Young Fans At ATL Hospital Donates 113k Face Masks!!!

SHARING IS CARING

Atlanta Braves star Ronald Acuna Jr. made a champion-esque move this week ... by visiting and donating 113,000 face masks to an Atlanta children's hospital the day after winning the World Series!!

The awesome visit happened on Thursday -- right after Acuna's Braves took home the Commissioner's Trophy and beat the Houston Astros in Game 6 of the 2021 Fall Classic.

Waiting for your permission to load the Instagram Media.

The outfielder popped up at the Children's Healthcare of Atlanta -- surprising fans including 11-year-old Nolan Madsen, who's a patient at the Aflac Cancer and Blood Disorders Center.

It turns out Nolan's hero is Acuna -- and he was in total shock when he came face to face with the superstar, who later handed him a signed #13 jersey and posed for pics with him!!

That wasn't the only thing Acuna gave away during his stop ... he also donated 113,000 masks to the hospital as a thank you for their hard work and dedication during the COVID pandemic.

"This day is for the kids," Acuna says. "I get to smile, and feel happy that I’m a World Series champion. They helped me get that. It’s only right if I can give that smile back."

The hospital thanked the 23-year-old via IG for the great gesture .. saying, "Thank you Acuna for making this incredible week even better for our kids! ⚾"

#ChampMoves

Braves Players Hilariously Pelted With Beers ... At World Series Parade

CATCHIN' CANS
Courtesy of MLB

The Atlanta Braves partied like its '95 on Friday ... with players getting bombarded with beers getting thrown at 'em by fans at the World Series parade -- and it's hilarious!!

TONS of fans were out and about in the streets of Atlanta to watch the champs soak in the rewards of their hard work.

The Braves -- who haven't won the Fall Classic since 1995 -- capped off a Cinderella postseason run by defeating the Brewers, Dodgers, and the pesky Astros.

CELEBRATION CHUG

As the parade made its way through ATL, the players made sure to show their appreciation for the fans in attendance ... and well, the fans returned their favor.

In the video, you can see a fan in the crowd tossing a beer to Austin Riley -- a third baseman for the squad -- and he's able to snag the brew from the air!!

WHAT A CATCH!!!
Twitter/@JaredHoopkins

Dansby Swanson was also able to snag a beer Stone Cold Steve Austin-style ... and we gotta admit, the throw was just as impressive as the Gold Glove-worthy catch.

Soak it all in, champs ... and be sure to drink some water!!

Donald Trump Nails Kid In Head W/ Baseball At W.S. ... Hilariously On Video

HEADS UP!
@loupastore27 / TikTok

Welp, he was trying to do something nice ... but former President Donald Trump knocked a kid upside the head with a baseball at the World Series, and the video is pretty funny.

(The boy is okay!!)

#45 was in the house at Truist Park in Atlanta for game 4 of the World Series last Saturday night -- sitting in an open-air suite with Melania Trump -- a game the Braves won 3-2 over the Astros.

The video shows a young boy desperately attempting to get DT's attention. Finally, the ex-prez heard the kid, and asked him to throw a baseball for him to sign.

The boy complies ... and Trump -- who claimed he could've gone pro as a baseball player -- made a nice catch, snagging the ball, which was underthrown by the kid.

The 75-year-old politician grabbed a marker from a Secret Service agent ... and signed the baseball.

Then came time to toss the ball back ... and that's when Trump plunked a kid square in the dome, after an adult male who was with the kid failed to make the routine catch.

Thankfully, the boy appears to be okay ... and fans nearby were able to retrieve the baseball.

The silver lining ... we previously reported on Trump-signed balls that have sold for around a thousand bucks a pop.

As for Trump, he spoke about his baseball prowess back in 2004.

“I was supposed to be a pro baseball player. At the New York Military Academy, I was captain of the baseball team. I worked hard like everyone else, but I had good talent.”

Official ruling ... error on the catch.

Atlanta Braves Soak Locker Room In Booze ... To Celebrate W.S. Title

SOAKIN IN SUCCESS
@lasmayores / Instagram

The Atlanta Braves punished the Astros, and then they pummeled the Houston locker room with booze -- and video of their celebration is EPIC!!!

Just minutes after the Braves beat the 'Stros 7-0 in Game 6 to win the World Series ... they hit the showers and had a wild celly.

It all kicked off with a speech from manager Brian Snitker -- and as soon as he finished praising his team, the guys went crazy!!

Check out the footage, they sprayed the 66-year-old down from head-to-toe with champagne ... getting it all up in his eyes (we're sure it hurt so good!).

The dudes then broke out cigars and more booze -- soaking in every bit of the team's first championship since 1995.

As for on the field, Jorge Soler won the World Series MVP award ... piling up 3 home runs in the 6 games against Houston.

No word yet on what the slugger and the rest of the guys did to celebrate after they left the locker room and headed home ... but we're sure it included more alcohol and more stogies.

Congrats!!!

Astros vs. Braves You'll Fall For These Classic WAGs

The Houston Astros and Atlanta Braves are duking it out in the World Series ... so there's no time like the present to highlight the gorgeous wives and girlfriends on each team!!

Astros ace Justin Verlander might be injured this season, but his model wife, Kate Upton, definitely still counts for recognition -- even if she won't be in the crowd cheering on.

Same goes for the Braves' side -- Eva Luccia is dating Ronald Acuna Jr., who's also injured ... but if ATL wins it all, the dude gets a ring ... so it counts!!

Daniella Rodriguez is married to Houston shortstop Carlos Correa, who's NOT injured ... so there's no debate here.

There's more -- Liliana Armas, who's married to Atlanta Braves outfielder Guillermo Heredia, and Reagan Howard who is married to 'Stros infielder Alex Bregman also highlight the list.

Scroll through and check out all the significant others supporting their men in the Fall Classic ... and enjoy the game, if you care.

Braves' Charlie Morton Breaks Leg During World Series ... But Still Pitches!!!

Atlanta Braves pitcher Charlie Morton etched his name into MLB lore Tuesday night ... 'cause he broke his leg during Game 1 of the World Series -- but still pitched on it!!

Morton took a comebacker off his shin in the 2nd inning of ATL's tilt with the Astros in Houston ... and right away, it was clear something was off with the Braves' ace.

Morton hobbled a bit back to the mound with a pained expression on his face -- but he still managed to get the next two outs to end the inning.

And, despite sitting in the dugout in pain while his team batted in the top of the 3rd inning, Morton still came out to pitch in the bottom of the inning!

The 37-year-old actually struck out Jose Altuve -- but was in so much pain, he was helped off the mound by trainers.

Atlanta officials later revealed Morton's X-rays showed he had broken his right fibula ... and they immediately ruled him out for the rest of the series with the 'Stros.

The Herculean effort, though, was not wasted ... because Morton's pitching helped Atlanta secure the Game 1 victory -- and now the Braves only need 3 more wins to take home the Commissioner's Trophy.

Tough dude.

Cubs Superfan Jeff Garlin Pissed Jake Arrieta Won't Get Vaxxed We'll Never Win Without It!

IT AIN'T POLITICS
Waddle and Silvy / ESPN Chicago

Funny guy Jeff Garlin ain't laughin' when it comes to his beloved Cubs, Jake Arrieta and the COVID vaccine ... saying his favorite team will NEVER win the World Series if it keeps dodging inoculation.

The "Curb Your Enthusiasm" star -- who's a Chicago native and a huge baseball fan -- didn't hold back on the "Waddle and Silvy" show on ESPN Chicago this week ... saying a W.S. trophy won't touch Chicago unless the team gets vaxxed.

"If you don't get to 85% [fully vaccinated], I will wager everything I've got 'No' on the World Series," Garlin said. "If you're playing somebody who doesn't have to worry about that, it's a whole different world."

"If we're playing the Braves in the National League Championship, we're losing."

If you missed it ... the Cubs are one of several teams in the MLB struggling to get all of their players to receive their COVID shots -- with Arrieta being VERY vocal about his skepticism of it all.

In fact, Arrieta and the team are lagging so much on their shots, president Jed Hoyer just said last month he's "disappointed" that it appears the Cubs will not get to an 85% vaccination rate this season.

Of course, that's the MLB's magic number that it's requiring for teams to relax some of the league's strict COVID rules and regulations.

Garlin says the fact that this is an issue inside the clubhouse at Wrigley Field is straight-up "disgusting."

"I don’t get it," Garlin said. "I find it disgusting because I don’t think it's political and I think it’s your responsibility as a human being, part of the human race, to get that shot."

"That’s my opinion."

L.A. Dodgers Champs Get Icy World Series Rings More Than 100 Diamonds Each!!

The L.A. Dodgers got their World Series rings on Friday -- and good lord, SO. MANY. DIAMONDS!!!!!

The ring ceremony took place right before the Dodgers home opener against the Washington Nationals ... and it was special!!!

Each of the Dodgers players was introduced to the crowd by their childhood MLB heroes.

So, Mookie Betts was intro'd by Jimmy Rollins. Chase Utley introduced Cody Bellinger. And "Big Papi" David Ortiz did the honors for Julio Urias.

But, let's get to the hardware ...

Of course, each ring featured the Dodgers iconic "L.A." logo on top -- made from 17 genuine blue sapphires.

Notice the baseball diamond design -- featuring 4 large diamonds representing each of the bases.

The "infield" is loaded with 29 smaller diamonds, representing the number of home runs hit by the Dodgers during the 2020 postseason.

There are 16 more sapphires and 44 diamonds surrounding the perimeter of the top of the ring.

And, the sides??? You guessed it -- MORE DIAMONDS!!

According to MLB, the total number of diamonds just on the sides totals 96!

So, congrats to the champs -- the 32-year drought is over! Just make sure to keep those things in a safe!

Oh, and the Dodgers won -- all in all, a pretty nice little Friday.

Dodgers' Max Muncy Awesome Cleat Tribute to Tommy Lasorda ... for WS Ring Ceremony

The L.A. Dodgers will receive their World Series rings before their game on Friday ... Max Muncy is making sure Tommy Lasorda is a part of the big day.

The Dodgers infielder hit up Stadium Custom Kicks for a special pair of cleats featuring Tommy, who passed away in January at age 93.

Lasorda is one of the most important and iconic Dodgers of all time -- he played for the team back in the '50s, managed the team through the '70s, '80s and '90s and served as a team executive right up until his final breath.

So, when the Dodgers get their World Series rings to commemorate their victory over the Tampa Bay Rays, Muncy wanted to make sure Tommy was properly represented during the ceremony.

The kicks are awesome -- featuring Tommy's face, his #2 uniform number and one of his most famous quotes.

"I bleed Dodger blue and when I die, I'm going to the big Dodger in the sky."

Muncy commented about the cleats -- saying, "It’s unfortunate that Tommy won’t be there to celebrate with us. But I know he will be looking down on us with a big smile on his face!"

Miguel Cabrera Astros 2017 W.S. Isn't Tainted ... 'That's Bulls***'

The Houston Astros do NOT deserve an asterisk next to their 2017 World Series championship ... so says Miguel Cabrera, who thinks the notion of a tainted title is "bulls***."

The MLB superstar didn't mince words in an interview with ESPN this week ... saying straight-up Houston earned its '17 ring, despite its massive sign-stealing, cheating scandal that season.

"In the end ... it's baseball," the future Hall of Famer said. "[Try to] go ahead and do it like those guys did."

It's a hot take from Cabrera ... considering most of Miguel's baseball peers wildly disagree.

MVPs like Cody Bellinger and Mike Trout have blasted the Astros for their roles in the cheating ordeal ... and were HEATED when none of the players were severely punished.

In fact, former Yankees pitcher CC Sabathia has been so livid over it all ... he's ripped the 'Stros every opportunity he's had, even recently calling Carlos Correa a "clown."

Cabrera -- whose Tigers manager is now former Astros 2017 bench honcho A.J. Hinch -- clearly sees things differently ... saying of the entire ordeal, "I don't care about that."

Cabrera says Hinch has been nothing but a good dude since the Tigers hired him this offseason ... adding, "I don't care what they did in Houston."

"He [was] a big part of the success Houston had the last three to five years."

For the Astros' part ... many of their star players have apologized for the scandal -- and Hinch himself has taken responsibility for his role in all the cheating.

Julio Urias Dad Gets Inked ... Huge Tat For Son's World Series Win!!!

UPDATE

3:17 PM PT -- TMZ Sports spoke with Ortega Rojas about the ink ... and he tells us the tat was Urias' dad's first EVER!!

UPDATE

Ortega Rojas says the art took nine hours in total to complete ... and it meant a lot to Urias' dad, who wanted the piece to be a symbol of the long and successful journey it took to get Julio from a youngster to World Series champ.

Julio Urias' dad just made sure he'll NEVER forget his son's World Series win ... the star pitcher's pops just commemorated the Dodgers' title with a HUGE tat -- and it's awesome!

The artist who did the work -- Andres Ortega Rojas -- revealed the piece Sunday night ... showing off the new, incredible ink that runs from the top of Julio's dad's shoulder to just above his elbow.

Waiting for your permission to load the Instagram Media.

The artwork features 24-year-old Julio celebrating inside the World Series trophy ... with "World Series Champions" inscribed at the bottom.

Of course, the depiction of Julio is now a famous image ... it's the pose he struck after closing out the Tampa Bay Rays in the 9th inning of Game 6 back in October.

"It was a pleasure to tattoo the dad of Julio Urias," Ortega Rojas wrote on social media.

Urias clearly approved of the ink ... he posed for a thumbs-up pic with his dad and Ortega Rojas after the tattoo was completed.

The thing is ... Urias and the Dodgers are the favorites to win this year's championship as well -- and it's got us all wondering, is there space on the other arm for portrait #2?!

Originally Published -- 12:29 PM PT

Dodgers' Justin Turner Apologizes for COVID Exposure ... 'No Excuse for My Conduct'

Justin Turner is breaking his silence about the COVID debacle during Game 6 of the World Series -- saying he's apologized to his teammates for "failing to appreciate" the dangers of the virus.

MLB has also wrapped up its investigation into Turner -- and is admitting the league could have handled the situation better.

The Dodgers star 3rd baseman was pulled from Game 6 in the 7th inning right when MLB and Dodgers officials learned a recent COVID test of his turned up positive.

But, Turner returned to the field with his wife Kourtney after the game ended to partake in the victory celebration with teammates, coaches and others.

At the time, MLB blamed Turner for not following COVID protocol -- claiming he "emphatically refused to comply" with official orders.

Now, Turner is speaking out in a statement saying ... "I will not make excuses for my conduct but I will describe my state of mind."

"Winning the World Series was my lifelong dream and the culmination of everything I worked for in my career."

"After waiting in the isolation room while my teammates celebrated on the field, I asked whether I was permitted to return to Sheffield with my wife in order to take a photograph."

"I assumed at that point that few people were left on the field. I was under the impression that team officials did not object to my returning to the field for a picture with my wife."

"However, what was intended to be a photo, capturing the two of us, turned into several greetings and photos where I briefly and unwisely removed my mask."

"In hindsight, I should have waited until the field was clear of others to take that photo with my wife."

"I sincerely apologize to everyone on the field for failing to appreciate the risks of returning to the field. I have spoken with almost every teammate, coach, and staff member and my intentions were never to make anyone uncomfortable or put anyone at further risk."

MLB commish Rob Manfred is also speaking out -- saying MLB has concluded its investigation into the COVID incident and feel they could have handled it better.

Manfred essentially says Turner deserves some blame for the incident -- but not all of the blame.

"Mr. Turner has publicly recognized that his conduct was wrong and has expressed remorse for that conduct," Manfred says in a statement.

Manfred says there were multiple "miscommunications" in the insanity following the game and MLB could have done a better job communicating the protocol to Turner.

"In retrospect, a security person should have been assigned to monitor Mr. Turner when he was asked to isolate, and Mr. Turner should have been transported from the stadium to the hotel more promptly."

It seems MLB will NOT punish Turner for the incident.

"I am closing this matter by applauding Justin for accepting responsibility, apologizing and making a commitment to set a positive example going forward."

Clayton Kershaw Drove Home, Didn't Fly With Team ... After COVID Exposure

Clayton Kershaw wasn't on the Dodgers team flight back to L.A. after the World Series -- instead, the star pitcher says he drove home after the COVID scare.

"After the bubble, I drove home," Kershaw said on "Jimmy Kimmel Live!" ... "I'm home already."

Kershaw is from Texas -- so, he may have meant he drove back to his home near Arlington. Either way, seems clear he wasn't on the team flight back to L.A.

Of course, Kershaw was seen hugging teammate Justin Turner moments after winning the World Series on Tuesday ... despite the fact Turner had just been informed he tested positive for COVID-19.

As we previously reported, MLB claims it ordered Turner to immediately isolate to prevent exposing other people ... but JT refused and got up close and personal with several teammates coaches and staffers.

Turner did not join the Dodgers on the flight back from Arlington to L.A. -- and apparently, Kershaw didn't either.

Kershaw and Cody Bellinger also told Kimmel that Turner's positive COVID test impacted the team celebration after the game ... because they didn't get to turn up in the locker room as they hoped.

"With everything going on we had to be a little chill," Kershaw said.

"I, at least, got to cheers the guys and we all got to at least have a beer together."

Bellinger added, "Wasn’t the ideal celebration that we all had in mind when we won our first championship but it was still a great time. The feelings now and yesterday are incredible."

There's more ... Bellinger also addressed rumors that he looked HIGH ON WEED during the World Series!

Belli says he would never smoke on the job -- but admits he has a naturally stoney-looking face!

Funny stuff.

Nick Jonas Our Magical Powers Help Athletes Win ... Opposite of Drake Curse!!!

THE JONAS BROTHER EFFECT

Forget the "Drake Curse," Nick Jonas says athletes should be lining up for the "Jonas Blessing" -- a PROVEN theory that the JoBros can help win championships!!!

Patrick Mahomes. Cody Bellinger. Lewis Hamilton.

They all attended Jonas Brothers concerts just MONTHS before they dominated their respective sports.

Coincidence? NICK THINKS NOT!!

"To fully understand this conspiracy, we have to back things up to Sept. 22nd, 2019," Nick says ... "That is the day of the Jonas Brothers show in Kansas City Missouri. You know who was at that show? Patrick Mahomes. Cut to a few months later, Patrick Mahomes and the Kansas City Chiefs won Super Bowl 54."

That checks out.

"Next up, Dec 10, Arizona. Who was there you might ask? Oh, Cody Bellinger. Cut to October 27th, the Dodgers win the World Series."

Also, accurate.

"Lewis Hamilton attended the Jonas Brothers concert in Paris on Feb. 22nd. Just last week, he won his 92nd Grand Prix, the most of all time."

SOUNDS SCIENTIFIC TO US!

"The key to success is to come to a Jonas Brother show," Nick explains ... "Basically the reverse of the Drake Curse. Let's call it the Jonas Blessing."

Nick says talent and work ethic are fine and all ... but if you REALLY wanna win, it's about Jonas bangers like "Year 3000" and "Sucker."

"Congrats to all you Jonas-loving athletes who were smart enough to come to a show. You deserve those championships!"

He's not wrong.

L.A. Dodgers 2-Week Team-Wide Quarantine Advised By L.A. County Health Dept.

The Dodgers are "working closely" with the L.A. County Health Department after Justin Turner tested positive for COVID … and officials are advising an immediate team-wide quarantine.

TMZ Sports spoke with Health Department officials who tell us they've already been in contact with the champs and have issued recommendations on the next steps "to prevent additional exposures."

The Dept. is wishing Turner a speedy recovery ... but reminded the slugger that he -- like anyone who is COVID positive -- MUST quarantine until they beat the virus.

But, they're not just singling out Turner ... the LACDPH says any Dodgers player or staff member "who has been a close contact of a person who has tested positive for the virus for 15 minutes or more over a 24 hour period must quarantine for 14 days."

Since Turner got up close and personal with most of the team during the World Series celebration -- even packing in close for a team photo -- the suggestion is everyone needs to isolate, ASAP.

As we previously reported, the Dodgers boarded a plane and flew back to L.A. on Wednesday.

Here's hoping they follow the recommendations and stop the virus from spreading any more than it already has.

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