Heisman Winner Goes 0 for 2 vs. Yankees
Tampa, Fla. — Heisman Trophy winner Jameis Winston has no plans to stop being a two-sport man.
“I’m just 20 years old,” Winston said Tuesday after Florida State lost 8-3 in the New York Yankees’ spring training opener. “This is my life, man. I want to play both as long as I can. I love both of them. I’ve got a strong passion for both.”
Florida State’s quarterback in the fall, Winston went 0 for 2 in the Seminoles’ exhibition game against the Yankees. He grounded out to second base while facing Shane Greene in the sixth and struck out looking on a full-count pitch from Bryan Mitchell two innings later.
“Obviously, he’s a great talent,” Yankees manager Joe Girardi said. “I guess he had a football injury in the championship game, which kept him from hitting for a while. But he’s just starting to pick up the bat again. I guess he had torn a ligament in his left index finger.”
Winston has made three scoreless appearances as a closer this season but didn’t get a chance to pitch against his favorite baseball team. Seminoles coach Mike Martin said Winston’s arm was a little tender after his outing Saturday.
“There were really not any plans for him to pitch,” Martin said. “Not throwing today gives him Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday off before he pitches again. We felt that would be the best way to approach it.”
Florida State plays Miami on Friday.
Winston played in the field twice previously this year, getting a hit in his lone at-bat. Against Greene, the 6- foot-4, 230-pound sophomore got a big cheer from the announced crowd of 7,708 at Steinbrenner Field after shattering his bat on foul grounder.
Djokovic Wins in Dubai
Dubai, United Arab Emirates — Novak Djokovic opened the defense of his Dubai Championships title with a straight sets victory over Denis Istomin, while second-seeded Juan Martin del Potro had to retire from his first-round match on Tuesday.
Top-seeded Djokovic, who is making only his second appearance this year after reaching the quarterfinals of the Australian Open, was a 6-3, 6-3 winner over 54th-ranked Istomin of Uzbekistan.
Del Potro was not so fortunate, being forced to retire against Somdev Devvarman of India after losing the first-set tiebreaker 7-6 (3).
Man U Falls in Champs League
Piraeus, Greece — Manchester United’s terrible season got even worse Tuesday night when the English power lost 2-0 at Olympiakos in its second-round Champions League opener.
Alejandro Dominguez deflected Yiannis Maniatis’s shot past David de Gea in the 38th minute, and Joel Campbell caught the goalkeeper off guard with a well-placed strike in the 55th minute at Karaiskaki Stadium.
United is just sixth in the Premier League at 13-8-6 and trails Liverpool by 11 points for fourth place, the final berth in next season’s lucrative Champions League. Winning this year’s competition might be the only route into next year’s tournament for United, which would face a major revenue loss if it fails to qualify for Europe’s top club tournament.