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Court dismisses lawsuit filed by widow of ex-pitcher Fidrych


WORCESTER, Mass. (AP) A Massachusetts appeals court has dismissed a wrongful-death lawsuit filed by the widow of former Major League pitcher Mark Fidrych.

Court records show the 54-year-old died of asphyxiation in 2009 after his clothing became tangled in a spinning piece of a dump truck he was working on.

Ann Pantazis filed a lawsuit in 2012 against the makers of the truck and the spinning component, arguing they did not provide sufficient warnings.

The court ruled unanimously Monday the companies did provide warnings and the equipment had no design defects. The court panel says the companies had no legal responsibility to warn of the dangers after Fidrych modified the truck.

Fidrych, nicknamed “The Bird,” played five seasons with the Detroit Tigers before his retirement in 1983.

Jason Vargas fractured his non-pitching hand

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Mets left-hander Jason Vargas has a non-displaced fracture of the hamate bone in his right hand, the team announced Sunday. Vargas sustained the injury after taking a comebacker off of his hand on Friday and is expected to consult with a hand specialist later today as the team settles on a course of action. Comments from GM Sandy Alderson indicate that surgery is a possibility, though the left-hander may also pitch through it for the time being.

Vargas, 35, signed a two-year, $16 million pact with the team last month. He completed a four-year run with the Royals in 2017, earning his first career All-Star nomination with an 18-11 record in 32 starts and producing a 4.16 ERA, 2.9 BB/9 and 6.7 SO/9 over 179 2/3 innings. Prior to the incident, the southpaw was expected to help fill out the back end of the Mets’ Opening Day rotation.

Kristie Ackert of the New York Daily News estimates that Vargas will likely miss the start of the season as he faces a two- to six-week recovery period. It’s a disappointing turn of events for a pitching staff that has been absolutely ravaged by injuries over the last couple of years.