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Canadian Joey Votto appears in record 1,989th career major-league game

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CINCINNATI — No Canadian has played in more Major League Baseball games than Joey Votto.

The Cincinnati Reds first baseman appeared in his 1,989th major-league game Sunday, an 8-5 win over the Chicago Cubs. That broke the previous mark, which had been held by Larry Walker of Maple Ridge, B.C.

Officials from the Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame presented Votto, 38, of Toronto, with a plaque to commemorate the accomplishment following the contest.

“To break Larry Walker’s all-time games record is a testament to Joey Votto’s determination, resiliency and enduring skills” Jeremy Diamond, chair of the Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame’’s board of directors, said in a statement. “Best of all, Joey has carried himself with dignity and class throughout his career and he continues to be a role model and inspiration for players in Canada.

“Congratulations to him on this tremendous accomplishment.”

It’s the latest career accomplishment for Votto. who is the all-time leading Canadian in at bats, plate appearances, walks and all-star game selections (six).

Votto remains under contract for next season (with a team option for 2024). That would seemingly leave Votto within striking distance of Walker’s all-time Canadian records for doubles (471) and hits (2,160).

Votto has currently accumulated 453 doubles and 2,093 hits.

Votto is in his 16th season with Cincinnati. He has topped the National League in on-base percentage seven times, walks five times and has batted over .300 in eight full seasons.

In 2021, he had 36 homers and reached three career milestones when registered his 2,000th hit, 300th home run and 1,000th run-batted in.

“We are proud to honour Joey’s tremendous accomplishment, but we hope to make more of these presentations in the future as he continues his record-breaking career,” said Diamond.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Aug. 14, 2022.

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Justice

CP NewsAlert: Liberals withdraw controversial amendment to guns bill

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OTTAWA — The federal Liberals are withdrawing a controversial amendment to their guns bill that would have added many popular hunting rifles and shotguns to a list of prohibited firearms in Canada.

The amendment has caused an outcry in many parts of rural Canada, and the Liberals have been under pressure from many of their own MPs to change or withdraw the new definition of weapons being banned.

More coming.

The Canadian Press

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COVID-19

Quebec says only people at risk who haven’t had COVID-19 should get booster dose

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Only people who are considered at risk for severe COVID-19 — and who haven’t already been infected — need to get a booster dose, Quebec’s public health director said Thursday.

The vast majority of Quebecers have hybrid immunity — protection through vaccination and through a SARS-CoV-2 infection — making regular boosters unnecessary, at least for this winter and spring, Dr. Luc Boileau told reporters.

“People with hybrid immunity … have a very good protection against a severe form of the illness,” Boileau said. “And this immunity lasts for a long enough time that we can propose changes.”

Those who have been vaccinated but haven’t contracted the virus are also protected against severe COVID-19, he said, but their immunity “has a tendency to drop with time.”

Quebec’s vaccination committee decided to focus the province’s immunization policy on preventing hospitalizations and deaths, he said. People who are 60 and older or who have chronic illnesses, health workers, pregnant women and those who live in isolated regions are among the people who should get a booster every six months — but only if they have never caught the virus, Boileau said.

Dr. Caroline Quach-Thanh, chairperson of Quebec immunization committee, said the data shows that people already vaccinated for COVID-19 who have contracted the virus “maintain their protection.”

“Adding a dose doesn’t add a lot protection for severe (illness),” she said.

Health officials estimate that more than three-quarters of Quebecers under 60 have had COVID-19 over the past three years, while about half of those over 60 have caught the virus.

Boileau said only people who are immunocompromised should continue getting boosters even if they’ve been infected, “because their immunity could be affected by their condition.”

Before Thursday’s announcement, boosters were recommended for all people considered at risk of severe COVID-19. Boileau said COVID-19 vaccines will remain available to anyone who wants one. “We won’t refuse anyone,” he said.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Feb. 2, 2023.

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