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TORONTO Amid the pomp and circumstance of the home opener, the great Roy Halladay throwing out the ceremonial first pitch and the major league debut of Yankees phenomenon Masahiro Tanaka, it could be easy to lose the significance of Dustin McGowans role in Friday nights festivities. Yet there he was, toeing the rubber to throw the first pitch of the first inning for the first time since September 26, 2011. Even greater an accomplishment, considering his significant injury history, is that McGowan is healthy to begin a season for the first time since 2008. Not many pitchers undergo three shoulder surgeries and another on a knee and continue to throw in the best league in the world. McGowan is a rare exception. Hes allowing himself to enjoy the experience but not enough to distract him from the task at hand. "I have a little bit but the last few days, my focus has been on what Ive got to do to get the Yankees out," McGowan told TSN.ca. "It feels like Ive got a lot of stuff going on in my head but thats part of it. Im ready." The shoulder surgeries chronicle like this: in 2008, to repair fraying of the labrum; two years later, in 2010, to repair a torn rotator cuff; in 2012, an arthroscopic procedure. McGowan underwent the knee surgery in 2009. Yet there he was on April 4, 2014, starting Torontos first home game of the season. His wife Jilly and their two children were in attendance. At the time McGowan spoke to TSN.ca, he was trying to arrange for his brother-in-law to be in the crowd, too. The result matters because the game counts in the standings. But in its own way, the fact McGowan is on the mound in the first place, the fact he went to the Blue Jays late last season and told them he wanted to take one more shot at being a starting pitcher and the fact he achieved the goal seems just as important as the result itself. "To be honest with you, I am," manager John Gibbons said, admitting to surprise. "All hes been through, hes defying all the odds really. So many guys thats happened to disappear and then to be able to maintain most of it, I mean hes not popping it like he once did but theres still plenty there." There really is no plan for McGowan because nobody knows what lies ahead. Hes tired of being asked how his shoulder feels after every bullpen session and each outing but those are important questions. The Blue Jays intend to monitor McGowans innings for as long as this experiment goes. The club, should it choose, could utilize its three April off days to push McGowan back, giving him extra off days in between appearances. If his shoulder starts to ache, or "bark" as players often say, McGowans bosses want to hear about it. "Ive told him multiple times, any concerns at all, youre not doing this for us, youre doing this because you want to do it," said general manager Alex Anthopoulos. "He had no problems at all last year. We would have loved to have been able to stretch him out but we werent in a position to do it." Halladay tosses ceremonial first pitch It was an all-too-familiar scene: the great Roy Halladay back on the mound for the home opener in Toronto. But he wasnt in full uniform and he only had the ceremonial first pitch to deliver. It was a strike. "Its pretty cool to be back," said Halladay. "It doesnt seem that long ago when you walk in. It feels like I was just here. Its exciting. Im enjoying retirement but this is pretty cool to be able to come back here." Halladay has settled in the Tampa Bay area and went to the Jays season opener against the Rays on Monday at the behest of his son. He worried that sitting in the stands would be uncomfortable so soon after his retirement. "I had my doubts," said Halladay. "But, honestly, I enjoyed it and I have no regrets, no disappointments. Im actually really happy with the choice I made and it was the right choice I made." Cheap Argentina Jerseys . The Mercedes duo of three-time Canadian Grand Prix champion Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg has won all six races to start the season, finishing one-two in the last five. Cheap Portugal Jerseys . According to TSN Edmonton reporter Ryan Rishaug, agent Rick Valette met with Oilers senior VP of hockey operations Scott Howson and general manager Craig MacTavish on Monday to kick off the talks. http://www.cheapsoccerjerseysoutlet.com/?tag=cheap-russia-jerseys . Right-hander Todd Redmond took the loss. Jose Bautista hit his second home run of the spring. Here are a handful of tidbits from around camp: Hutchison impressive The Blue Jays are being cautious when talking about their young arms but internally, excitement is building over the way Drew Hutchison is looking and performing this spring. Cheap Inter Milan FC Jerseys . With nothing tangible at stake, the Raptors turned in their most impressive outing of the fall in their seventh and second to last exhibition tilt against their stiffest competition yet, but they lost a couple starters in the process. Cheap Belgium Jerseys .J. Mayo made seven three-pointers and scored 25 points, Ersan Ilyasova added 20, and the Milwaukee Bucks placed seven players in double figures in a 130-110 rout of the Philadelphia 76ers, who lost their 11th straight game on Monday night.RIO DE JANEIRO, Brazil -- Luis Suarez told FIFAs disciplinary panel that he did not deliberately bite Italy defender Giorgio Chiellini at the World Cup. "In no way it happened how you have described, as a bite or intent to bite," the Uruguay striker wrote in Spanish in a letter dated June 25. The players defence is in paragraph 6 of FIFAs disciplinary committee ruling, which has been seen by The Associated Press. "After the impact ... I lost my balance, making my body unstable and falling on top of my opponent," Suarez wrote in his submission to the panel which met Wednesday, one day after Uruguay beat Italy 1-0 in a decisive group-stage match. "At that moment I hit my face against the player leaving a small bruise on my cheek and a strong pain in my teeth," Suarez said. However, the seven-man panel which met on WWednesday evening dismissed the argument.dddddddddddd The bite was "deliberate, intentional and without provocation," the ruling stated in paragraph No. 26 of the panels conclusions. Suarez was banned for nine Uruguay matches and four months from all football. He was also fined 100,000 Swiss francs ($112,000). The panel, chaired by former Switzerland international Claudio Sulser, included members from the Cook Islands, Hong Kong, Pakistan, Panama, South Africa and Singapore. The ruling confirmed that referee Marco Rodriguez of Mexico acknowledged in his match report that he missed Suarezs bite. So did his two assistants and the fourth official. "I havent seen the incident because the ball was in another sector of the pitch," Rodriguez writes in paragraph No. 4 of witness submissions in the 11-page document. Cheap Jerseys China NFL Jerseys Cheap NBA Jerseys Wholesale NHL Jerseys Wholesale MLB Jerseys Cheap Soccer Jerseys China Wholesale NCAA Jerseys Wholesale Football Jerseys Wholesale Basketball Jerseys Wholesale Baseball Jerseys ' ' '
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