David Ortiz rips off jersey, reveals ‘Girl Power’ shirt with Aly Raisman

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Seven Winter Olympians and Paralympians threw ceremonial first pitches at the Boston Red Sox home opener Thursday, but it’s what happened with a Summer Olympian moments later that created buzz.

Red Sox legend David Ortiz and six-time Olympic gymnastics medalist Aly Raisman took the field to yell “Play Ball!” at Fenway Park.

Before taking the mic, Ortiz ripped open his white jersey to reveal a black T-shirt with the words “GIRL POWER” in white.

Ortiz and Raisman have been friends since Raisman threw a ceremonial first pitch at an August 2012 Red Sox game following her first Olympics in London.

Raisman, a native of Needham, Mass., has attended a gala and golf tournament benefitting Ortiz’s children’s charity and a 2015 Christmas Eve gathering at Ortiz’s home.

Raisman threw another first pitch at an August 2016 Red Sox game, where Ortiz famously wore her medals.

The PyeongChang Olympians and Paralympians who threw first pitches Thursday were reportedly hockey players Kacey Bellamy, Brianna DeckerMeghan Duggan and Amanda Pelkey, Nordic skiers Jake Adicoff and Dan Cnossen and luger Chris Mazdzer.

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VIDEO: U.S. curler throws first pitch to wrong catcher

Lucas Braathen, world’s top male slalom skier, in doubt for world championships

Lucas Braathen
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Norway’s Lucas Braathen, the world’s top male slalom skier this season, is doubtful to compete in the world championships slalom on Feb. 19 after appendix surgery on Tuesday.

“It’s been a tough couple of days fighting after surprisingly finding out about quite an intense infection on my appendix,” Braathen, a 22-year-old soccer convert with a Brazilian mom, posted on social media. “I’ve been through surgery and I’m blessed that it went successfully.”

The Norway Alpine skiing team doctor said Braathen’s recovery will take a few weeks, but there is a small possibility he can make it back for the world championships slalom, which is on the final day of the two-week competition.

Braathen has two slalom wins and one giant slalom win this World Cup season. He will miss Saturday’s slalom in Chamonix, France, the last race before worlds. Countryman Henrik Kristoffersen and Swiss Daniel Yule can overtake him atop the World Cup slalom standings in Chamonix.

Braathen entered last year’s Olympics as the World Cup slalom leader and skied out in the first run at the Games.

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Sifan Hassan sets marathon debut

Sifan Hassan
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Sifan Hassan, who won 5000m and 10,000m gold and 1500m bronze at the Tokyo Olympics in an unprecedented triple, will make her 26.2-mile debut at the London Marathon on April 23.

Hassan, a 30-year-old Dutchwoman, said she will return to the track after the race, but how the London Marathon goes will play into whether she bids for the Olympic marathon in 2024.

“I want to see what I can do on the marathon distance, to make future decisions,” she posted on social media. “We’ll see if I will finish the distance or if the distance will finish me.”

Exhausted by her Olympic feat, Hassan reportedly went at least seven months after the Tokyo Games between training in track spikes. She finished fourth in the 10,000m and sixth in the 5000m at last July’s world championships in Eugene, Oregon.

“I really needed a break after the Tokyo Olympics,” Hassan said at worlds. “I was mentally crashed. I didn’t even care about running.”

London, billed as the best women’s marathon field in history, also boasts Olympic champion Peres Jepchirchir of Kenya, world record holder Brigid Kosgei of Kenya, 2016 Olympic 10,000m champion Almaz Ayana of Ethiopia, 1500m world record holder Genzebe Dibaba of Ethiopia and the two fastest Americans in history, Emily Sisson and Keira D’Amato.

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