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Judge sides with Albert Pujols, who was sued by his cousin for defamation


TMZ reports that a judge sided with Angels DH Albert Pujols and threw out a defamation lawsuit filed by Pujols’ cousin Wilfrido against Albert last year.

Wilfrido and his older brother were involved in a police chase back in 2007 that ended up killing another man. Wilfrido was cleared of wrongdoing, though his brother — the driver — had been using drugs and alcohol. The mother of the victim sent an email to Pujols’ foundation in 2014 which accused him and his wife of financially aiding the brothers. Pujols’ wife, Diedre, responded by writing, “These two young men have ruined many lives.” The mother posted the statement to her Facebook page publicly. Wilfrido says that statement made by Diedre ruined his reputation and helped derail his baseball career. Wilfrido wanted $27 million. He won’t be receiving anything.

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.