Carter's condition worsens as new brain tumors found
Gary Carter's health has taken a turn for the worse. The 57-year-old Hall of Fame catcher, diagnosed last May with a malignant brain tumor, received results of his latest MRI exam Thursday, according to the online journal of his daughter, Kimmy Bloemers.
She writes: "I wish I could say that the results were good. ... There are now several new spots/tumors on my dad's brain. I write these words with tears because I am so sad for my dad."
"Dr. Jimmy Harris will be coming to my parent's house this evening to talk to the family about the next step," she wrote.
Carter had the MRIs Friday in North Palm Beach, Fla., and the results were sent to his doctors at Duke University for evaluation. A day earlier, he fell at a doctor's appointment and completely tore a rotator cuff, Bloemers wrote, adding that he also fell on Christmas Eve. "It is very painful and needs surgery, but all dad can do right now is rehab to heal," she wrote.
Toms, Villegas lead Humana Challenge
David Toms and Camilo Villegas shot 9-under 63s to top a Humana Challenge leader board dotted with impressive scores in the opening round Thursday in La Quinta, Calif. Ted Potter Jr., Sang-moon Bae, Brandt Snedeker and Bob Estes were one stroke behind in postcard-perfect weather on the pro-am tournament's three generous Palm Springs-area courses. Villegas and Toms both played bogey-free at the erstwhile Bob Hope Classic, which has dropped one day of its traditional five-round format this year. Toms played alongside Presidents Cup teammate Phil Mickelson, who struggled to a 74. Toms made a 30-foot birdie putt on the sixth hole right after Mickelson holed an eagle putt, ratcheting up the energy in an often staid tournament. Defending champion Jhonattan Vegas shot a 70, and world No. 8 Dustin Johnson and Greg Norman each shot 72 in the Shark's first Palm Springs appearance since 1986.
■ Nicolas Colsaerts of Belgium opened with a course-record 9-under-par 64 to lead the first round of the Volvo Golf Champions at The Links at Fancourt on Thursday. Colsaerts has a four-stroke lead over South Africa's Branden Grace and Thomas Aiken and England's Tom Lewis. The previous course record was 68 set by Tim Clark and Ross Fisher in the first round of the 2005 South African Open. Padraig Harrington showed glimpses of a return to form with a 69, despite a double-bogey 7 at the last hole.
Canadian freestyle skier Burke dies
Canadian freestyle skier Sarah Burke died Thursday, nine days after crashing at the bottom of the superpipe during a training run in Utah. Burke, who lived near Whistler in British Columbia, was 29. She was injured Jan. 10 while training at a personal sponsor event at the Park City Mountain resort. Tests revealed Burke sustained "irreversible damage to her brain due to lack of oxygen and blood after cardiac arrest," according to a statement released by Burke's publicist on behalf of her family. A four-time Winter X Games champion, Burke crashed on the same halfpipe where snowboarder Kevin Pearce suffered a traumatic brain injury during a training accident on Dec. 31, 2009.
Sports in the courts
Carmona arrested in identity case
Cleveland Indians pitcher Fausto Carmona has been arrested for allegedly using a false identity in the Dominican Republic, where officials are contesting his real name and birthdate. A police spokesman said Carmona was arrested Thursday outside the U.S. consulate in Santo Domingo. Carmona had gone there to renew his visa so he could return to the United States. Indians pitchers and catchers are scheduled to report to training camp in Goodyear, Ariz. next month. Maximo Baez Aybar said Carmona's real name is apparently Roberto Hernandez Heredia and he's 31, three years older than the pitcher claimed. The Indians list Carmona's birthday as Dec. 7, 1983, in their 2011 media guide.
Busch brothers team up in Nationwide
The Busch Brothers will be teamed together for the first time in more than a decade this season as co-drivers for Kyle Busch Motorsports. Kyle Busch tabbed his older brother, Kurt, to share the No. 54 Toyota this year in the Nationwide Series. The brothers on Thursday introduced Monster Energy as their sponsor for the new team. KBM has fielded a Truck Series team since 2010, but this will be its first year in stock-cars and in NASCAR's second-tier series.
Lack of action cost Paterno his job
Penn State trustees say they decided to oust Joe Paterno in part because the football coach didn't meet a moral obligation to do more to alert authorities about a child sex abuse allegation against a retired assistant coach. Trustees interviewed Thursday by The Associated Press also cited statements from Paterno in the days and hours leading to his dismissal Nov. 9 — after nearly a half-century of leading the Nittany Lions — that they felt challenged the Board of Trustees' authority. Board members saw that as inappropriate, particularly at a time of intense scrutiny over the case of former defensive coordinator Jerry Sandusky.
World War II bomb found in Austria
An aerial bomb from World War II was found at a construction site Thursday, forcing the postponement of the daily medals ceremony at the Winter Youth Olympics in Innsbruck, Austria. The 550-pound bomb was discovered by workers nearby. The bomb was being disposed at the time the downtown ceremony was scheduled to start. The ceremony will be held Friday.
The last word
New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft, recalling what Tom Brady told him after the quarterback was drafted in 2000:
"He comes up and says, 'Mr. Kraft, I'm Tom Brady.' I said, 'I know who you are, you're our sixth-round draft choice from Michigan.' And he looked me right in the eye and he said, 'and I'm the best decision this organization has ever made.' "