Superstitious John Lackey Has To Build, Destroy A Luxury Hotel Before Every Start

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Issue 4537

Web Gem Disappointing

URBANA, IL—The No. 3 Web Gem of the Day, Blue Jays third baseman Jose Bautista's backhand pickup of an Evan Longoria grounder, was a "great disappointment" to avid baseball fan Andrew Missel, who questioned whether the play deserved any honor at all. "So, what—he just short-hopped the ball?" asked Missel, who has often expressed deep dissatisfaction with the rankings and nominations of the Baseball Tonight segment.

East Carolina Grad Thinks East Carolina A State

JACKSONVILLE, FL—At a press conference Monday, Jaguars quarterback and East Carolina University alum David Garrard indicated through certain statements to reporters that "East Carolina" is one of the 50 United States. "I can say without hesitation that it is definitely my favorite of all the Carolinas," said the former ECU Pirate, who, when pressed, identified the imaginary commonwealth's capital as Greenville and its state bird as the red-necked grebe.

Area Man Unsustainable, Experts Warn

WASHINGTON—Experts predict 39-year-old Doug Mahoney's most nutrient-rich layers will be washed away by the end of the decade, leaving little more than a desiccated, middle-aged wasteland.

Eight Sailors Suspended In Boat-Clearing Brawl

RAS AL-KHAIMAH, UAE—Famed yacht club the Société Nautique de Genève suspended eight sailors from the Alinghi of Switzerland and BMW Oracle Racing teams Friday for their part in an ugly boat-clearing brawl during the 33rd America's Cup.
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Superstitious John Lackey Has To Build, Destroy A Luxury Hotel Before Every Start

ANAHEIM, CA—Following John Lackey's most recent win, teammates on the Angels revealed that one of the superstitious starting pitcher's most prominent pre-game rituals is to design, construct, and demolish a luxury hotel before he takes the mound. "I can't even talk to him before a game because he's just so focused on installing the hotel's final brick, attending its ribbon-cutting ceremony, and then scanning its structural integrity for implosion points," said teammate Chone Figgins, who occasionally helps out by placing a call to his builder cousin for a good rate on poured concrete. "You can always tell [Lackey]'s going to have a bad start if he doesn't get the hotel up to code in time, or can't set off all the detonator charges in the right order before the game starts." When asked for an assessment of the hotels, Figgins said they were "pretty tacky."

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