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Eagle lands on James Paxton’s shoulder during national anthem

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Doug Pederson wasn’t the only Eagle stealing the pre-game spotlight on Thursday. An eagle mistook Mariners starter James Paxton for its handler, landing on the left-hander’s non-throwing shoulder during the national anthem prior to Thursday afternoon’s game in Minnesota against the Twins.

Paxton didn’t seemed fazed at all by the eagle. As of this writing, he’s tossed a pair of scoreless innings against the Twins.

Coincidentally, Paxton appeared in a commercial for the Mariners before the season in which he seemed to have an affinity for birds — provided they aren’t Blue Jays or Orioles.

CC Sabathia hopes to play one more year

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Back in May, Yankees starter CC Sabathia said he’d retire if the Yankees won the World Series. That still may be the plan, but he recently told MLB.com that he’s going to try to pitch in 2019, health willing:

“I’m start to start. I go out one start and feel like I can pitch five more years. I go out another start and I’m done. But if I can stay healthy — if my knee holds up — hopefully I’ll play one more.”

Sabathia is enjoying a nice late-career renaissance, having transformed himself from the dominant lefty he used to be to a crafty one over the past several seasons. Sabathia will turn 38 on Saturday, but he’s having another solid season. He has a 3.51 ERA and 1.27 WHIP over 18 starts.

Will a World Series decide whether he hangs ’em up? Will his knee? Guess we’ll know by November.