The Supreme Court loves its baseball

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There was a nice story in the New York Times yesterday detailing just how crazy U.S. Supreme Court justices have tended to be about baseball over the years.  Alito is a huge Phillies fan who, despite observing that the Phanatic, well, kind of smells, had him as a guest at a party once.  Sotomayor is a big Yankees fan. Nominee Elena Kagan is a Mets freak.  The person she would replace — Justice Stevens — was actually at the game in the 1932 World Series when Babe Ruth allegedly called his shot.

The best bit in the whole story, however, comes in an anecdote that makes me feel better about all the time I spent thinking about baseball while working back at the law firm:

Intense devotion to the national pastime at the Supreme Court is not a new phenomenon. In 1973, while the court heard arguments during the National League Championship Series, Justice Potter Stewart passed a note to Justice Harry A. Blackmun that exhibited a nice sense of proportion.

“V.P. Agnew just resigned!!” the note said, adding, “Mets 2 Reds 0.”

Mike Fiers may not be ready for start of regular season due to back issue

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Anthony Fenech of the Detroit Free Press reports that Tigers starter Mike Fiers is dealing with a back issue and may not be ready for the start of the season. Manager Ron Gardenhire characterized the injury as a “stiff back” and added, “Maybe a little bit of a bulging disk or something like that.”

Fiers, 32, signed a one-year, $6 million deal with the Tigers in December. He has had a forgettable spring, yielding 12 runs on 10 hits and eight walks with seven strikeouts in 11 1/3 innings.

Fiers had a rotation spot locked up along with Michael Fulmer, Jordan Zimmermann, and Francisco Liriano. Matt Boyd and Daniel Norris were battling it out for the No. 5 spot. If Fiers opens the regular season on the 10-day disabled list, both could have spots in the rotation.