Yankee Stadium Suite for Derek Jeter’s Home Finale Won’t Be Cheap

Anyone who wants to see Derek Jeter's final regular-season game at Yankee Stadium had better be willing to pay up.

Unless the New York Yankees make the playoffs, Jeter will play his final game at Yankee Stadium on Sept. 25 against the Baltimore Orioles. The shortstop has played his entire 20-year career with the Yankees, so it will be a very big night at the ballpark.

As of July 16, the cheapest ticket to the game on StubHub will cost you nearly $200. If you think that's a lot, that's nothing compared to some of the other tickets listed.

Here's what the most expensive ticket is going for:

Don't worry, the view is great.

Asking for $244,202 per ticket is a pretty steep cost. However, there is another set of tickets listed at nearly $100,000 apiece and a handful going for more than $20,000 per ticket. Whether or not those tickets will have any buyers is yet to be seen.

Every Yankees fan, and most baseball fans, would love to be at Jeter's home finale. For those who want to attend the game, be ready to spend some serious money.

[StubHub, h/t 96.3 KTWIN and HardballTalk]

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Giancarlo Stanton Home Run Leaves Fan with Swollen Hand at HR Derby

Everyone knows Miami Marlins slugger Giancarlo Stanton has serious power. After seeing this picture, though, it turns out we may have underestimated it.

Jordan Jacobson, a fan at the 2014 MLB Home Run Derby at Target Field, posted a photo of what happened to his hand after he apparently tried to catch a Stanton blast. Let this be a lesson to anyone who tries to catch a Stanton-hit ball with bare hands.

Here's what Jacobson had to say about the experience, via Page Q Sports' Josh Baumgard: "It was extremely painful at first, then went numb after about 15 minutes. It probably would have felt better if I would have gotten the ball."

He didn't even get the ball. That's just adding insult to injury.


Update: July 16 at 4:55 p.m. ET

Giancarlo Stanton saw what happened and is coming through for the fan:


It looks like the fan will get a ball after all.

[Giancarlo StantonTwitter, h/t Next Impulse Sports]

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CBS News Mistakenly Calls Derek Jeter ‘Michael’ During Final All-Star Game

Derek Jeter was the biggest storyline of the 2014 MLB All-Star Game. After all, it was the New York Yankees shortstop's 14th and final All-Star game of his 20-year career.

Given the situation, it's hard to fathom how CBS News made a glaring mistake when tweeting out a story about Jeter. It was just an honest mistake, but with all of the attention that Jeter has received leading up to the game, it's pretty funny.

Twitter went wild with the mistake:

Could this be Michael Jeter?

But no, it wasn't Michael Jeter taking a final bow.

[Twitter, h/t Lisa Braun]

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Derek Jeter’s Final Farewell at the 2014 All-Star Game in Minnesota

The 2014 MLB All-Star Game marks the final time Derek Jeter will play in the Midsummer Classic, so all eyes were on the New York Yankees shortstop on Tuesday night.

For the 14th time in his 20-year career, Jeter was a member of the American League All-Star team. Before his farewell All-Star Game, the living legend addressed his teammates in the clubhouse:

The Target Field crowd showed him some love for all he has done for the game during pregame introductions: 

Once the pregame ceremonies were over, the future Hall of Famer was ready to play. He nearly robbed Pittsburgh Pirates star Andrew McCutchen—the first batter of the game—of a hit on a diving play.

American League manager John Farrell penciled the Yankees captain into the leadoff spot, and it turned out to be a good move. After receiving a standing ovation from the Minnesota crowd, Jeter doubled to right field to get the AL offense going.

That hit was probably enough to silence the one fan yelling "Overrated!" during the at-bat. 

Yahoo Sports' Jeff Passan revealed a little secret from National League starting pitcher Adam Wainwright:

Los Angeles Angels phenom Mike Trout knocked Jeter in with a triple, and the AL scored three runs in the inning to take a 3-0 lead over the NL.

In his second at-bat of the game, and final of his All-Star Game career, Jeter worked a full count before singling to right field in the bottom of the third inning.

Jeter was then lifted after taking his position in the field before the top of the fourth inning. The shortstop tipped his cap to the crowd as he jogged off the diamond and hugged everyone in the AL dugout before emerging one more time for a curtain call.

Jeter finished the game 2-for-2 and scored the first run of the game. With the second hit, the 40-year-old made a bit of All-Star history:

The overall numbers for Jeter in the All-Star Game are incredible:

[MLB.com, Twitter]

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Cincinnati Reds: 2 Holes Reds Must Address at the Deadline

The Cincinnati Reds have reached the All-Star break as legitimate contenders, and with the 2014 MLB trade deadline only a couple of weeks away, the team has to address a few weaknesses on its roster.

Everything that could have gone wrong for the Reds in the first half went wrong, mainly because of injuries. Joey Votto, Jay Bruce, Brandon Phillips and Devin Mesoraco have all made at least one trip to the disabled list. Phillips (sprained thumb) and Votto (quad) aren't expected to be back anytime soon.

Mat Latos and Tony Cingrani have also both dealt with injuries. The bullpen started the season without Aroldis Chapman, Jonathan Broxton and Sean Marshall.

All of those key players have made trips to the disabled list this season, but that's only the start. Several role players have also dealt with injuries in 2014. Despite all of those injuries, Cincinnati enters the All-Star break only 1.5 games out in the National League Central and one game back in the wild-card race.

There are a few holes the Reds should address if they want to increase their playoff chances. However, there are a couple of things that could prevent the team from making a big trade at the deadline. The team's payroll is over $110 million, so there's not much financial flexibility. Also, should the Reds find an affordable option, they don't have much to offer a team since their farm system isn't very deep.

Although Cincinnati doesn't have much to work with, it could use a trade to help bolster the team's playoff chances. Here are a couple of areas the team should look to address at this year's deadline.

 

Left-handed reliever

No area on this roster needs to be dealt with more than the bullpenspecifically left-handed relievers.

Cincinnati's bullpen (3.84 ERA) ranks 21st in all of baseball at the break. That's a pretty surprising stat considering the bullpen has thrown the fewest innings (244) in all of baseball. The bullpen has had plenty of opportunities to rest up, but outside of Aroldis Chapman and Jonathan Broxton, it's been an adventure with this group of relievers.

Nobody expected this bullpen to struggle this season. It had been among the best in baseball since now-manager Bryan Price took over as pitching coach before the 2010 season. 

Injuries have certainly played a major part in the bullpen's struggles, but now that it is only missing Sean Marshall, the results should be better. They aren't.

With Marshall out for the year with a shoulder injury, the Reds need to look for another southpaw for the bullpen. Marshall hasn't been able to pitch much since the beginning of last season, so the team should look at acquiring a left-hander who can help the team in the future, not just this year.

Right now, Manny Parra is the team's only southpaw in the bullpen save for Chapman, who is the closer. Last year, Parra held left-handed batters to a .167 average. That was good enough to earn a two-year contract with the Reds this past offseason.

Unfortunately, he hasn't been able to dominate left-handed hitters the same way—lefties are hitting .246 off of Parra this season. That's not terrible, but considering he's the team's left-handed specialist, that average needs to be lower. 

Parra has only pitched a total of seven innings since the end of May. As the race for the playoffs heats up in the second half, he is going to have to be ready to pitch in key situations whenever Prices calls on him. 12 walks in only 25 innings gives reason to worry. 

Relievers don't normally cost a team much in terms of money or trade pieces. A southpaw like the Chicago Cubs' James Russell would require more in return, but the Reds could also look at a less proven reliever. 

If the Reds make a deal at the deadline, it should be to add another southpaw to the bullpen. Although the bullpen wasn't used very much over the majority of the past six weeks, adding a shutdown left-hander has the ability to improve the team's playoff chances.

 

Depth at first base

A month ago, the team's biggest need on offense may have been shortstop. However, a lot has changed since the beginning of June.

Zack Cozart is as good as it gets on defense and has once again started to swing the bat a little better as the year goes on. As long as he stays healthy, he will be able to help the team.

The team's biggest hole in terms of position player is its lack of infield depth, especially at first base. Votto is back on the disabled list and is likely out until the middle of August at best. When a team has Jay Bruce, a Gold Glove-caliber right fielder, playing first base occasionally, that's a problem.

Yes, the Reds are hoping to get Jack Hannahan back in a week or so. Is he going to be able to swing the bat well enough to help this team down the stretch? Hannahan is coming off of shoulder surgery to repair a torn labrum and will be at a disadvantage whenever he returns, since pitchers will be in midseason form when he will just be getting started.

Cincinnati is also without Phillips for four to six weeks, according to The Cincinnati Enquirer's John Fay. The club could look at adding depth at second base, but with Skip Schumaker, Ramon Santiago and Kristopher Negron as options at second, first-base depth is a more glaring need.

A trade to address depth at the position looks like it would make sense. In the minors, the Reds have Donald Lutz and Neftali Soto who can play first base. They may be able to play the position, but their bats don't look ready for a pennant chase right now.

The Reds don't have a legitimate veteran option for first base right now. Brayan Pena, a catcher, appears to be the team's best option for the time being. Bruce will give it his best shot at first base, but Price is weakening two positions by playing the outfielder at first. Todd Frazier can shift over to first when needed, but he already has three errors in only 10 games there.

The only problem with trading for a first baseman is that the Reds can't trade for someone who can only play first base unless he will be a free agent after this season. Votto is locked up through at least 2023, making a trade for a player who could only play first base and is signed for more than this season pointless.

Cincinnati can look for a rental player for the position or for someone who could play left field as well as first base. The way injuries have hit the Reds this season, they should at least consider adding a decent bat for first base at the deadline. 

 

*All stats are via MLB.com

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Derek Jeter’s Custom Jordan Cleats Reflect on Past All-Star Games

Derek Jeter will play in his final MLB All-Star Game on Tuesday night at Target Field, so it's only fitting that Jordan Brand has created a pair of cleats that reflect back on the New York Yankees shortstop's previous All-Star experiences.

Jeter has been named to 14 American League All-Star teams in his 20-year career. He has taken advantage of every opportunity he has had to play in the games, as he is a career .440 hitter in the Midsummer Classic.

The custom Jordan cleats list all of the cities where Jeter has played the All-Star Game. The cleats also pay tribute to Jeter's 2000 MLB All-Star Game Most Valuable Player award.

[Jordan]

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MLB Forgets Oakland’s Derek Norris at All-Star Parade, Teammate Saves the Day

Oakland A's catcher Derek Norris made the All-Star Game for the first time in his young career in 2014, but he didn't get all of the perks of being an All-Star in Minnesota.

All-Stars are supposed get their own car and sign for the parade on the day of the game. That didn't happen for Norris.

Luckily, Norris had plenty of Oakland teammates—seven Athletics players were named All-Stars this season—he could call on for help. Pitcher Sean Doolittle stepped up and saved the day.

If Norris couldn't have his own car, he's probably happy that he was able to share the experience with his teammate.

[Jane Lee]

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Giancarlo Stanton’s Third-Deck Home Run at 2014 Home Run Derby Wows Everyone

Miami Marlins outfielder Giancarlo Stanton was the slugger who everyone wanted to see at the 2014 MLB Home Run Derby at Target Field. He didn't disappoint.

Stanton led the National League with six home runs in the first round. If leading his team in long balls wasn't enough for him, he left his mark with the biggest blast of the opening round.

The home run was originally projected at more than 500 feet, but it was officially measured at a modest 430 feet.

Stanton was pretty pleased with how the first round went:

The best part about the Home Run Derby is that other Major League players act like kids when they see a big blast. When Stanton hit his third-deck home run that almost left the stadium, he left other All-Stars shaking their heads.

Stanton left one of his competitors, Cincinnati Reds third baseman Todd Frazier, blown away:

Andrew McCutchen, the 2013 National League Most Valuable Player, couldn't believe what he just saw:

Here are some other reactions from Stanton's peers:

In case you missed the show, here is a look at all of Stanton's home runs in the first round:

[MLB.com, Twitter]

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Henry Rowengartner Returns to Wrigley Field to Throw out First Pitch

Get excited, Chicago Cubs fans. Henry Rowengartner is back—and he is all grown up.

Actor Thomas Ian Nicholas, who is best known for his role as Rowengartner in the 1993 film Rookie of the Year, threw out the first pitch at Wrigley Field on Saturday. The Cubs are celebrating Wrigley Field's 100th anniversary this season, so it's only fitting that the star pitcher returned to the mound.

No video is available yet, but there are some pictures of the 34-year-old at Wrigley.

Hopefully the public address announcer was able to have a bit more success with Rowengartner's name than fictional Cubs manager Sal Martinella had in the movie:

This wasn't Nicholas' first time throwing out the first pitch at Wrigley Field. Last summer, he showed off his floater:

[Chicago Cubs, VineMLB.com]

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Twins Fan Shaves Brian Dozier’s Name and Number into His Back Hair

If you don't feel like spending money on a player shirt or jersey, there are other alternatives.

Shaving a player's name and number is the one way to save some money but still show support at the same time. We just want to know if Minnesota Twins second baseman Brian Dozier was honored or grossed out by this fan. 

It appears as though this is the same man who shaved Joe Mauer's name and number into his back hair a few years ago:

You be the judge: awesome or gross

[Twitter]

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Derek Jeter’s First Children’s Book Set to Be Released in September

Derek Jeter's baseball career is coming to an end, but his career as a book publisher is just beginning.

Last fall, Publisher's Weekly's Calvin Reid reported that the New York Yankees shortstop would team up with Simon & Schuster to create Jeter Publishing. The publishing company would work on releasing adult nonfiction, picture books, middle-grade fiction and more.

Now, Jeter is set to release his first children's book, The Contract.

Here is Amazon's description of the book:

As a young boy, Derek Jeter dreams of begin the shortstop for the New York Yankees. He even imagines himself in the World Series. So when Derek is chosen for the Little League Tigers, he hopes to play shortstop. But on the day of the assignments, Derek Starts at second base. Still, he tries his best while he wishes and dreams of that shortstop spot. And to help him stay focused on school, his parents make him a contract: keep up the grades or no baseball. Derek makes sure he always plays his best game—on and off the baseball field!

Jeter is listed as the author of the book, with Paul Mantell contributing.

The Contract will be released September 23, but fans can already preorder the book.

Jeter's first book is ready to go, but he's not stopping there. According to AMNY.com's Nina Ruggiero, two more children's books are already lined up:

Chronicle of Jeter's last season

A title has not yet been announced (perhaps because the story is not yet finished) for a chronicle of Jeter's final season, to be told primarily through photographs taken by Chris Anderson.

Publication date: Fall 2014

The Ed Lucas Story

After going blind at just 12 years old, Ed Lucas went on to study broadcasting and become the first person without his sight to cover baseball in such a capacity. His story is also in development to be told in film form.

Publication date: Spring 2015

With this new project in full swing, Jeter will be able to stay busy even after his baseball career is over.

[h/t Big League Stew]

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Hard-Hit Foul Ball Immediately Leaves Mark on Texas Rangers Fan

One couple left Globe Life Park in Arlington on Wednesday with a baseball and a memory, all thanks to a foul ball.

During the sixth inning of Wednesday's Houston Astros-Texas Rangers game, the Astros' Jon Singleton scorched a foul liner down the first-base line. It was the type of foul ball that you'd better be paying attention to if you have seats that close to the field.

Although nobody appeared to be hurt, the man who "caught" the foul ball had a wicked bruise from the liner.

The couple needs to get that ball signed by Singleton and Rangers pitcher Yu Darvish in order to put this moment over the top.

After the game, the bruise looked a bit better:

[MLB.com, Twitter; h/t Yard Barker]

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Texas Rangers Are Now Selling 2-Foot-Long Taco at Globe Life Park in Arlington

Even the food is big in Texas. 

The Texas Rangers made headlines a couple of years ago by introducing the 2-foot-long hot dog. Now the team is selling something even more ridiculous.

Globe Life Park in Arlington is now home to the "Tanaco," a 2-foot-long taco. It won't be cheap for fans, however: The Tanaco costs $26.

Just how many Jack In The Box tacos can you buy for one Tanaco

The name "Tanaco" makes you wonder how the New York Yankees didn't come up with this idea first. After signing phenom Masahiro Tanaka in the offseason, the Yankees would have been wise to name an item at the concession stands after the pitcher.

[Darren Rovell]

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San Diego Graffiti Artists Honor the Late Tony Gwynn with a Mural

A group of San Diego graffiti artists are using their talents to honor a local legend.

Tony Gwynn played his entire 20-year career with the San Diego Padres, and he is affectionately known as "Mr. Padre." He passed away last month at the age of 54 after a battle with cancer.

Now the Wildstyle Technicians are putting together a mural of the late Gwynn on the wall of a boxing gym, with permission from the owner, on 16th and J streets.

Gwynn may have been a baseball player, but he influenced everyone, regardless of profession.

"The way he mastered his craft is what we try to do as graffiti artists, so when he passed, immediately in our minds we wanted to do a tribute mural," said Justice Romero, via ABC 10 News' Kandiss Crone.

Mr. Padre may be gone, but he will not be forgotten. The Wildstyle Technicians want to make sure that generations to come know about the Hall of Fame outfielder, even if they never saw him play. 

Saratoga Sake, who is also battling the disease, wanted to paint the mural to keep Gwynn's legacy going strong for years. Sake, via Crone, spoke about the project:

He's larger than life. Hopefully it will bring smiles to people's faces 'cause Tony Gwynn had a huge great smile.

For the younger generation that doesn't really know much about Tony Gwynn, hopefully they'll ask, 'Who is that?'

A mural is the perfect way for these artists to honor Gwynn.

[Big League Stew]

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Derek Jeter Sets Up Easy Double Play by Faking Out Jason Kipnis at Second Base

Derek Jeter is making sure he uses up all of his tricks before he hangs up his glove.

On Monday night, the New York Yankees shortstop was able to set up an easy double play in the eighth inning of a two-run game with a smooth fake.

With the Cleveland Indians' Jason Kipnis running on the pitch, he had no idea where Asdrubal Cabrera hit the ball. Jeter realized that and pretended to catch the ball at second base to fake the runner out. Cabrera had hit a pop-up in foul territory, though, so with Kipnis fooled, Yankees third baseman Zelous Wheeler could easily throw to first for the double play.

Cleveland had already scored one run in the inning, so it was a big play to get out of the frame with the tying run at the plate and the heart of the Indians order due up. The Yankees went on to win, 5-3.

[MLB.com]

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Tigers Rookie Eugenio Suarez Turns into Easy out at Home After Face-Planting

Scoring off Tampa Bay Rays ace David Price is no easy task, so when you get the opportunity to cross the plate against him, you better take advantage of it.

On ESPN's Sunday Night Baseball, the turf monster prevented Detroit Tigers rookie Eugenio Suarez from scoring from first on a double by Austin Jackson in the seventh inning:

Unfortunately for Suarez, this doesn't fall into the category of "rookie mistake." It's just an embarrassing moment for the first-year shortstop.

Tampa Bay went on to win 7-3, so Suarez's blooper didn't have much of an effect on the outcome of the game.

[MLB.com]

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Stock Up, Stock Down for Cincinnati Reds’ Top 10 Prospects for Week 14

Billy Hamilton has been fantastic for the Cincinnati Reds in 2014, but the club has plenty of talent in the minor leagues that fans should be keeping an eye on.

Cincinnati doesn't have many players who are ready to make the jump from the minors to the majors just yet, but by the end of this season, the Reds will have a good idea of what they have in their system.

There are some promising outfielders, but other than those select few, the Reds' top prospects are all pitchers. The team is loaded with talented arms in the minor leagues. A few of the team's recent first-round picks are beginning to show what they can do, and they have been impressive.

The Reds have a couple of representatives at the 2014 Futures Game, so for those who haven't had a chance to see some of the team's top prospects, be sure to tune into that game.

Check out how the organization's top prospects have done lately, with the rankings via the Reds' official website.

Begin Slideshow

Stock Up, Stock Down for Cincinnati Reds’ Top 10 Prospects for Week 14

Billy Hamilton has been fantastic for the Cincinnati Reds in 2014, but the club has plenty of talent in the minor leagues that fans should be keeping an eye on.

Cincinnati doesn't have many players who are ready to make the jump from the minors to the majors just yet, but by the end of this season, the Reds will have a good idea of what they have in their system.

There are some promising outfielders, but other than those select few, the Reds' top prospects are all pitchers. The team is loaded with talented arms in the minor leagues. A few of the team's recent first-round picks are beginning to show what they can do, and they have been impressive.

The Reds have a couple of representatives at the 2014 Futures Game, so for those who haven't had a chance to see some of the team's top prospects, be sure to tune into that game.

Check out how the organization's top prospects have done lately, with the rankings via the Reds' official website.

Begin Slideshow

We Remember: Rick Monday Saves American Flag from Being Burned by Protesters

Although this great save didn't happen July 4, today is a great day to look back at one of the most patriotic acts to happen on the diamond in Major League Baseball history.

On April 25, 1976, which was the year of the United States' bicentennial, the Los Angeles Dodgers hosted the Chicago Cubs at Dodger Stadium. In the middle of the fourth inning, two people ran onto the field. They didn't do it to interact with the players; they did it to protest.

The two fans had placed an American flag on the ground with the intention of burning it, but luckily, Cubs outfielder Rick Monday was there to save the day.

A few years ago, Monday talked to MLB.com's Ben Platt about what was going through his head at the time.

[MLB.com]

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Jason Grilli and Ernesto Frieri Meet in Airport After Trade for Each Other

Two Major League Baseball pitchers from teams on opposite sides of the country were traded for each other near the end of June. What are the odds that the two relievers would run into each other as they traveled to meet up with their new teams?

It sounds like a long shot, but odd things happen.

On June 27, the Pittsburgh Pirates traded Jason Grilli to the Los Angeles Angels in exchange for Ernesto Frieri. The two closers would cross paths just hours later, according to MLB.com's Tom Singer.

After leaving Kansas City, where the Angels were at the time of the trade, Frieri had a layover at Chicago's O'Hare Airport. Ironically, Grilli also had a layover in Chicago on his way from Pittsburgh to Kansas City.

Even if the two were in the same airport at the exact same time, it still seems unlikely that they would run into each other, given the size of O'Hare Airport. 

Here's what Frieri told Singer about the crazy coincidence:

I'm waiting for my next flight, so I just went to a bathroom to wash my face. First thing, I look at this guy washing his hands next to me, and I thought, 'I think I know this guy.'

I looked again, and he's looking at me and goes, 'Really? Well, I guess this is when we get to meet each other.

This is baseball. Life is crazy. That's a huge airport, and we just got traded for each other and that's how we meet

Out of the 100-plus bathrooms at O'Hare Airport, the two players who had just been traded for each other hours earlier just happened to be in the same one at the same time.

Grilli also spoke about the bathroom meeting:

I just said, 'Wish you luck over there, lot of good people, you've got a lot of good friends; make the most of it.' For me, it was difficult leaving good friends. That's always the hard part, and it sounded like that's what it was for him.

Both players were leaving their former teams, so it was probably a tough time for them. Between getting situated in a new city and getting to know new teammates, players may have some trouble getting used to their new team.

Frieri was at least able to give Grilli some information on the Angels.

"Congratulations, you're going to a really good team," Frieri said. "Good teammates."

Grilli and Frieri had never met before, but thanks to a trade, they have now.

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