Ortiz, Pedroia Jerseys are Fan Faves
New York — David Ortiz and Dustin Pedroia keep winning.
The two Red Sox stars have had the best-selling jerseys in Major League Baseball since Boston won the World Series in October.
No. 3 on the list released Thursday was Yankees captain Derek Jeter. His jersey has been the top seller since he announced Feb. 12 this would be his final season.
Yadier Molina, Clayton Kershaw, Andrew McCutchen, Buster Posey, David Wright, Robinson Cano and Manny Machado round out the top 10. Cano’s sales are combined for his Yankees and Mariners jerseys after he signed with Seattle in December.
The rankings are based on sales of Majestic jerseys from MLB.com.
Items from Johnny Pesky To Be Auctioned
Boston — Memorabilia from longtime Boston Red Sox player and coach Johnny Pesky’s personal collection will be sold during a live auction at Fenway Park next week.
The items include Pesky’s 2004 and ‘07 World Series rings, as well as the Rolex watch he received when his number was retired by the team. Also to be auctioned are bats autographed by Ted Williams and a ball that includes a Babe Ruth signature.
Pesky was a player, manager, coach and broadcaster in a career with the club that spanned over 60 years. He died in 2012 at 93.
According to Hunt Auctions, his ring from the 2004 World Series championship is expected to fetch $50,000 to $100,000.
A portion of the proceeds from the auction will be donated to the Jimmy Fund.
Percentage of Foreign MLB Players Drops Slightly
New York — The percentage of Major League Baseball players born outside the United States declined slightly for the second straight season.
The commissioner’s office said Tuesday that 223 players among the 853 on opening-day rosters and inactive lists were born outside the 50 states.
At 26.1 percent, the share is down from 28.2 percent last year and 28.4 percent in 2012.
Players come from 16 countries and territories, the most since 2008.
The Dominican Republic has topped the list each year since MLB began tracking the numbers in 2005. But its 82 players are down from a high of 99 in 2007.
Venezuela was next with 59, followed by Cuba, which set a high with 19 — four more than its previous mark set last year.
Puerto Rico had 11, followed by Canada (10), Japan and Mexico (nine), Curacao (five), Colombia and Panama (four), Nicaragua (three) and Australia and South Korea (two).
Boston’s Xander Bogaerts became the first player from Aruba on an opening-day roster since St. Louis’ Sidney Ponson in 2007. Cleveland’s Yan Gomes is the first Brazilian on an opening-day roster.
Texas has the most players born outside the 50 states with 15, trailed by San Francisco (13), Seattle (11) and the Chicago Cubs and Milwaukee (10 each).
Figures include active rosters, 101 players on the disabled list and two on the restricted list.
The percentage of foreign-born minor leaguers was 47.8, up from 47.3 last year.
QB Wilson Throws Strikes, Too
Arlington, Texas — Super Bowl-winning quarterback Russell Wilson can also throw strikes.
“Yeah, I’m used to throwing a baseball, used to throwing a football,” Wilson said after throwing out the ceremonial first pitch before a Texas Rangers game Wednesday night. “Good thing it’s a strike.”
Texas selected Wilson from the Colorado Rockies in the Triple-A portion of baseball’s December draft at the winter meetings. That was during the Seattle Seahawks season, and he got a call from Rangers general manager Jon Daniels at about 6:15 a.m. one day before going to a workout.
Wilson spent a day at spring training in Arizona with the Rangers last month, going through workouts before being in the dugout during a game.
He made his first appearance at the Rangers’ home ballpark by throwing out the first pitch before the series finale against Philadelphia. He went to the mound and threw a hard strike caught by Rangers third base coach Gary Pettis.
“The whole experience has been great for me,” Wilson said. “Obviously they want me to part of this organization — if I ever play baseball again or not, if I do the two-sport thing or not, or if I’m just part of the organization.”
When the 25-year-old Wilson appeared on the top step of the Rangers dugout, fans in Seattle football apparel started doing a Seahawks chant.
After playing football and baseball at North Carolina State, Wilson then played professional baseball. In 93 games over parts of the 2010 and 2011 seasons in Colorado’s organization, none above the Class A level, the second baseman hit .229 with five homers.
He then transferred to Wisconsin to play football, and made it to the NFL with the Seahawks. He finished his second NFL season in February with a 43-8 victory over Denver in the Super Bowl.
Wilson also plans to be in North Texas this weekend when Wisconsin plays in the NCAA Final Four at the Dallas Cowboys’ stadium a block away from the Rangers’ home.
“I’m so pumped for Wisconsin,” he said. “I picked them to win the whole thing.”