Under (Ball) Pressure: Tom Brady Suspended, MLB Reacts

The NFL is finding itself increasingly under pressure after the latest scandal involving deflated footballs, something Super Bowl MVP Tom Brady is well aware of… or at least that’s what the investigators say.

According to the investigation initiated by the National Football League and conducted by lawyer Ted Wells, New England Patriots quarterback Brady was “at least generally aware” of the employees’ plan to inflate footballs below the league mandatory minimum of 12.5 pounds per square inch or around 879 grams per square centimeter. As a result, he was suspended for four regular season games. And that’s not all: his team received a record-high $1 million fine and lost two picks in the upcoming 2016 and 2017 Draft while two equipment staffers who were implemented were suspended indefinitely.  The league lets each team handle its own footballs when it runs the offense, enforcing only one important condition: they must be inflated within a specific range of 12.5 – 13.5 pounds per square inch. The footballs that do not meet those requirements are usually easier to grip and catch.

Tom Brady did not wish to comment on the matter and only said that his team’s success in the 2014-2015 season had nothing to do with deflated balls. And it seems that football fans agree as they prepare to rally behind the MVP: the hashtag #NoBradyNoBanner – a fan campaign on social media that encourages New England to delay the championship banner celebration until the quarterback is eligible to play – stormed the Twitter world after the suspension was announced. Moreover, there was also a spike in sales with more and more fans looking to buy Brady’s jersey, according to the Associated Press.

Now, the only thing the champ has to do is to appeal and hope for a better scenario. He has until tomorrow, 5 PM ET (11 PM CET) to make that particular move.

MLB Changing Rules

The ‘Deflategate’ investigation left its mark not only on the NFL but also on Major League Baseball.

The MLB is ready to learn from its brother’s mistakes and decided yesterday to toughen up ball security. Starting from 2015, there will be a league representative who supervises what kind of baseballs are carried to the field. The whole issue of ball movement will be carefully scrutinized, from the initial supply necessary for starting and running the game in optimal conditions to the refill that may happen during certain games.

Baseballs weigh around 5 ounces or 142 grams but can go up to 9 ounces or 255 grams,creating an advantage for the pitcher.

BY: FLORIAN GHEORGHE

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