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Blockbuster founder, former Miami Dolphins owner Wayne Huizenga dead at 80 

Longtime South Florida sports owner, philanthropist and businessman H. Wayne Huizenga died Friday. He was 80.

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Huizenga owned the Miami Dolphins and their stadium for 15 years and was the initial owner of the Florida Marlins and Florida Panthers.

In business, he started Waste Management in the 1960s, was the catalyst behind Blockbuster Video’s growth in the 1980s and ’90s and created AutoNation.

Huizenga was involved in various charities and funded the business school bearing his name at Nova Southeastern University.

He bought a small portion of the Dolphins in 1990 and became full owner of the team three years later. They went to the playoffs seven times during his ownership, and South Florida hosted three Super Bowls.

Huizenga sold the team to Stephen Ross over the course of 2008 and 2009. He sold the Marlins in 1998 and the Panthers in 2001.

WATCH: Brewers reenact famous scene from 'The Sandlot' 

After 25 years, the Beast is back.

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The Milwaukee Brewers are known for churning out entertaining videos -- remember their bullpen dance-off against the Chicago Cubs? -- and spring training was no exception last week as several players contributed to a shot-by-shot reenactment of a famous scene from the 1993 movie, “The Sandlot.”

The 1993 comedy was about a group of friends who loved playing the game but only had one ball. So when one player hits the ball over the fence, where a snarling, mean dog lives, the game is apparently over. 

In the 2½-minute video, several players reprise the roles from the film, WTMJ reported. Stephen Vogt played Hamilton “Ham” Porter, who hits the home run. Brett Phillips plays Scotty Smalls, a newcomer who volunteers to retrieve the ball, while Eric Sogard has a memorable cameo as Squints.

Other players in the video include Christian Yelich as Benny, Hernan Perez as Yeah-Yeah, Jeremy Jeffress as Kenny, Josh Hader as Bertram, Chase Anderson (Tommy Timmons) and Jett Bandy (Timmy Timmons).

Plus, Hank the dog plays “the Beast.”

The scene is faithfully done, although Vogt bats left-handed. Ham bats right-handed in the 1993 film. And the Beast steals the scene.

Here is the original clip from the 1993 movie:

And here is what the Brewers do when they get bored in the bullpen:

Family that found 7 rare Ty Cobb baseball cards find another one

The T206 baseball card set, issued from 1909 to 1911, has been called “the Monster” by collectors. Two years ago, a family in a rural Southern town discovered seven rare Ty Cobb cards from that set while cleaning their great-grandfather’s house and sold them for nearly $3 million.

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Now, that family has made another monster discovery.

An eighth card of the Detroit Tigers’ Hall of Famer was found in another part of the great-grandfather’s house, and the family has decided to keep this one, Sports Collectors Daily reported.

“The family’s intent is to keep this latest addition as a memento,” according to Rick Snyder, owner of MINT State in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. Snyder initially reviewed all eight cards before sending them to be graded, according to a news release from Professional Sports Authenticator (PSA). “It’s a family heirloom that reminds them of an event that changed their lives forever.”

The rarity of the card, which was originally included with packs of cigarettes during the first decade of the 20th century, is determined by the advertisement on the back. It reads “Ty Cobb King of the Smoking Tobacco World,” and before the “Lucky 7 Find” find two years ago, only 15 of these cards were known to have existed.

Another Cobb card, called “The Matchbox Cobb,” was discovered last year by a Georgia family. The family was cleaning out their father’s sock drawer when they found the Cobb card in a matchbox. The card was graded PSA 1 and sold in an SCP Auctions sale on Nov. 4, for $100,000.

The latest Cobb card discovery brings the overall total to 24. Like the others, this card was sent to PSA, the Newport Beach, California-based grading company said in a statement. A grade of PSA 2, or good, was assigned to the card. The Lucky 7 cards ranged in grade from PSA 1.5 to PSA 4.5, Sports Collectors Daily reported.

The family, which still wants to remain anonymous, found the original seven cards as they were cleaning their great-grandfather’s home. They were at the bottom of a rumpled, torn paper bag that was on the floor. When the family inspected the bag, they found old postcards and the seven Cobb cards, lying face down, Sports Collectors Daily reported.

PSA said the eighth card was discovered between two books inside an old, dusty box. The card was among clothing, eyeglasses, makeup and several tobacco tins.

“The initial discovery, it was a real shock to them,” PSA President Joe Orlando told The Associated Press. “They put the cleaning on hold for a while.

“Later, they knew what they were looking for, and in a dusty box between two books, there was another one,” said Orlando, whose company verified the new card and put a $250,000 value on it. “It falls under the category of ‘you can’t make this stuff up.’”

The T206 set contains 525 different cards with 16 tobacco-brand advertisement backs. This also contains a Honus Wagner card that is recognized as the “Holy Grail” of baseball cards.

Family members released a statement through MINT State, calling the find “unbelievable.”

“We are incredibly blessed and grateful to have found another card,” the statement read. “This is unbelievable. We would have never thought this would happen once, much less twice. It is an incredible feeling.”

“This just goes to prove that buried treasure still exists in the collectibles world, even well above sea level,” Orlando said in a statement through PSA.

Chipper Jones: No need for civilians to own assault rifles

Chipper Jones was 5 or 6 years old when his father taught him how to shoot a gun, this coming before he had even played his first game of Little League baseball. He grew up loving one as much as the other, becoming not only a Hall of Fame player for the Atlanta Braves but an avid outdoorsman.

>> Ivanka Trump: 'I don't know' if teachers should be armed

Atlanta Journal-Constitution columnist Jeff Schultz approached Jones about his views on gun violence after years of deadly school shootings, most recently at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in the south Florida town of Parkland, where police say a former student armed with an AR-15 killed 17 people.

>> Florida school shooting survivor's mother says her family has received death threats

Jones said he has a real problem with the AR-15, the weapon used in at least 10 mass shootings. Jones believes the AR-15 and all similar assault weapons should be banned from public sale to civilians.

“I believe in our Constitutional right to bear arms and protect ourselves,” Jones said. “But I do not believe there is any need for civilians to own assault rifles. I just don’t.

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“I would like to see something (new legislation) happen. I liken it to drugs – you’re not going to get rid of all the guns. But AR-15s and AK-47s and all this kind of stuff – they belong in the hands of soldiers. Those belong in the hands of people who know how to operate them, and whose lives depend on them operating them. Not with civilians. I have no problem with hunting rifles and shotguns and pistols and what-not. But I’m totally against civilians having those kinds of automatic and semi-automatic weapons.”

>> Read the full column on MyAJC.com

Remembering Harry Caray 20 years after his death

It’s hard to believe that the joyous voice of the Chicago Cubs was silenced 20 years ago today.

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Broadcaster Harry Caray, who was the play-by-play man for the Cubs from 1982 to 1997, died on Feb. 18, 1998, in Rancho Mirage, California. He was 83, although at the time of his death, he was believed to be 78.

Caray had collapsed at his restaurant in Palm Springs four days earlier.

Before joining the Cubs. Caray called games for the St. Louis Cardinals (1945-1969), Oakland Athletics (1970) and Chicago White Sox (1971-1981).

In addition to his signature call of “Holy, Cow!” Caray was famous for his off-key, passionate rendition of “Take Me Out to the Ball Game” during the seventh-inning stretch.

Since baseball players are returning to Florida and Arizona for spring training, it’s only appropriate to hear Caray singing one more time. Here is a video from the last Cubs home game of 1997, which was his final appearance at Wrigley Field:

Former MLB pitcher Esteban Loaiza jailed on drug charges

Former major-league pitcher Esteban Loaiza faces felony drug charges after he was arrested Friday in San Diego, according to San Diego County arrest records.

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Loaiza, 46, was charged with possession of more than 20 kilograms of heroin and/or cocaine, according to arrest records. He was also charged with possession of narcotics for sale and possession and transportation of narcotics for sale.

Loaiza is being held in South Bay Detention Facility on $200,000 bail, according to arrest records. He will appear in court on Wednesday, the New York Post reported.

Loaiza pitched 14 seasons in the majors, compiling a 126-114 record. The native of Tijuana, Mexico pitched for the Pittsburgh Pirates, Texas Rangers, Toronto Blue Jays, Chicago White Sox, New York Yankees, Washington Nationals, Oakland Athletics and Los Angeles Dodgers. The right-hander’s best season was 2003, when he went 21-9 with the White Sox and finished second in voting for the American League Cy Young Award. 

His last season in the majors was in 2008.

Loaiza’s 126 victories makes him the second-winningest pitcher from Mexico in major-league history. Fernando Valenzuela is the leader with 173.

West Virginia hospital pulls ads to protest McCutchen trade

A West Virginia hospital is boycotting the owner of the Pittsburgh Pirates.

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Weirton Medical Center representatives said they are suspending advertising in Ogden Newspapers over the Pittsburgh Pirates’ failure to keep star outfielder Andrew McCutchen in Pittsburgh.

Pirates owner Bob Nutting's family owns Ogden Newspapers, which include the Herald Standard in Uniontown, Pennsylvania.

Representatives also said they want to send a message to the Nutting family that their company believes in community.

>> Pirates trade McCutchen to San Francisco

The Pirates traded McCutchen, the National League’s Most Valuable Player in 2013, to the San Francisco Giants on Jan. 15.

McCutchen spent his entire career with the Pirates organization, nine of them in Pittsburgh, and has a career batting average of .291.

Cleveland Indians will remove 'Chief Wahoo' logo from uniforms in 2019

The Cleveland Indians’ “Chief Wahoo” logo, beloved by many fans but criticized by others for its racist overtones, will be removed from the team’s uniforms, Major League Baseball announced Monday.

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The decision was a mutual one between Commissioner Rob Manfred Jr. and Indians owner Paul Dolan, MLB said in a statement. Manfred said Major League Baseball was “committed to building a culture of diversity and inclusion,” which led to dialogue between the commissioner’s office and the Indians.

“Paul Dolan made clear that there are fans who have a longstanding attachment to the logo and its place in the history of the team,” Manfred said. “Nonetheless, the club ultimately agreed with my position that the logo is no longer appropriate for on-field use in Major League Baseball, and I appreciate Mr. Dolan’s acknowledgement that removing it from the on-field uniform by the start of the 2019 season is the right course.”

Dolan said he was “cognizant and sensitive” to opinions on both sides of the discussion, adding that he was “ultimately in agreement” to remove the logo beginning in 2019.

The Indians, a charter member of the American League, were originally called the Blues when the team debuted in 1901. It changed the name to Bronchos in 1902, and then became the Naps from 1903 to 1914, in honor of star player Napoleon Lajoie. 

The team was first called the Indians in 1915, according to Baseball-Reference.

According to the Cleveland Plain Dealer, the Chief Wahoo logo debuted in 1932, when the newspaper ran a comic strip called “The Little Indian,” featuring a Native American, to recap the previous day’s results.

In 1947, 17-year-old Walter Goldbach designed the first rendition of Chief Wahoo, which was commissioned by then-Indians owner Bill Veeck, the Plain Dealer reported. The image was tweaked in 1951 and has been used since.

The team had been phasing out the logo in recent years, substituting a large block “C” insignia on some uniforms. Topps, the company that markets baseball cards, replaced the Chief Wahoo logo with the “C” in 2017 and made a point to feature photographs of players not wearing the logo.

Vehicle damages iconic 'Field of Dreams' ballpark

A baseball player who runs well is said to have wheels. At the iconic “Field of Dreams” movie site, a different set of wheels caused some damage to the iconic baseball field in Dyersville, Iowa, according to John Kruse of the Telegraph Herald. 

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A vehicle left tire tracks and damaged the sprinkler system at the ballpark, Kruse reported.

“Someone who is disturbed had some agenda to damage the field,” site owner Denise Stillman told Bleacher Report. “It's upsetting. There are gashes up to 4 inches deep in the outfield. Whoever did it was really able to dig in.”

The owners said it will take $15,000 to repair the damage to the grass and the sprinklers.

A GoFundMe page has been created to raise repair money, according to Bleacher Report.

The field was the focal point for the 1989 movie starring Kevin Costner.

Autopsy report: Roy Halladay had drugs in system when plane crashed

An autopsy on former major-leaguer Roy Halladay showed that he had amphetamines, morphine and a sleep aid in his system when he died in a plane crash off the west coast of Florida, The Tampa Bay Times reported Friday.

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Halladay, 40, died Nov. 7 from blunt force trauma with drowning as a contributing factor, according to the Pinellas-Pasco Medical Examiner’s Office.

The two-time Cy Young Award winner was flying his personal plane -- an ICON A5, which is an amphibious two-seat plane with foldable wings -- when it crashed into the Gulf of Mexico near New Port Richey, the Times reported. The National Transportation Safety Board is investigating the case.

Dr. Bruce Goldberger, a pathologist and director of the University of Florida’s Health Forensic Medicine center, said the drugs found in Halladay’s system were a concern, the Times reported.

>> Former MLB pitcher Roy Halladay killed in plane crash

“The drugs are particularly important in the assessment of the impairment of Mr. Halladay while operating the plane,” Goldberger told the Times. “The NTSB will take this evidence under consideration during their investigation of this accident.”

The autopsy did not say whether Halladay had prescriptions for the medications found in his system, the Times reported.

Halladay, a father of two, was an All-Star during his 16-year major-league career with the Toronto Blue Jays and Philadelphia Phillies. He had a 203-105 record and won the Cy Young Award in 2003 with Toronto and in 2010 with Philadelphia.

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