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Originally published Wednesday, December 22, 2010 at 6:36 PM

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Driver convicted in death of Nick Adenhart is sentenced to 51 years to life in prison | Baseball

The repeat drunken driver convicted of three counts of second-degree murder for the alcohol-induced, high-speed crash that killed Los Angeles Angels pitcher Nick Adenhart and two others last year was sentenced Wednesday to 51 years to life in prison.

Baseball

Angels pitcher was among three people killed in crash last year: The repeat drunken driver convicted of three counts of second-degree murder for the alcohol-induced, high-speed crash that killed Los Angeles Angels pitcher Nick Adenhart and two others last year wept Wednesday as he was sentenced to 51 years to life in prison.

Andrew Thomas Gallo, 24, who was also convicted of two felony counts of driving under the influence with injuries and one count of hit-and-run, will be eligible for parole after serving 49 years.

Gallo, speaking in Santa Ana, Calif., apologized to the families of the victims and asked they someday forgive him. "I am truly sorry," he said. "I want you to know I never intended to hurt anyone. I am not a bad guy."

But before his sentencing, Gallo told Orange County Superior Court Judge Richard Toohey: "You're right — I am a horrible person. They had big, bright futures ahead of them. And because of me, they're gone."

The April 9, 2009, crash at an intersection in Fullerton, Calif., occurred hours after Adenhart, 22, pitched six shutout innings.

A drunken Gallo drove through a red light at about 65 mph in his parents' minivan and slammed into a sedan carrying Adenhart and three others. Also killed were driver Courtney Frances Stewart, 20, who was a former cheerleader at Cal State Fullerton, and Henry Nigel Pearson, 25.

Gallo was driving on a suspended license because of a 2006 drunken-driving conviction, and forensic tests revealed he had nearly three times the legal limit for driving of alcohol in his system at the time of the crash.

The Adenhart family did not attend the trial but sent a letter to the judge that was read aloud.

"There is no justice as long as Mr. Gallo is drawing a breath," it read.

Crawford treats Rays employees: Outfielder Carl Crawford has left Tampa Bay for the Boston Red Sox, but he hasn't forgotten a group of people who helped make his nine seasons with the Rays successful.

The four-time All-Star, who agreed to a $142 million, seven-year deal with the Red Sox this month, picked up the tab for lunch at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Fla., where about 150 Rays employees feasted on a barbecue meal Crawford arranged to have delivered to the home of the AL East champions.

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Crawford, who didn't attend the lunch, was the longest-tenured player in franchise history.

Brewers finalize Counsell deal, add ex-Mariner Green, sell lots of tickets: The Milwaukee Brewers finalized infielder Craig Counsell's $1.4 million, one-year contract and also reached an $875,000, one-year agreement with right-hander Sean Green.

Counsell, 40, hit .250 for the Brewers last season.

Green, 31, was hampered by injuries and had a 3.86 earned-run average in 11 relief appearances for the New York Mets this year. Green, who has a career ERA of 4.36, pitched in 160 games for the Mariners from 2006 to 2008.

Brewers officials said they have added more than 1,500 season-ticket holders since Sunday's trade with Kansas City that brought pitcher Zack Greinke to Milwaukee. Greinke, 27, won the 2009 AL Cy Young Award.

Rick Schlesinger, the Brewers' executive vice president of business operations, says response from fans has exceeded "even our most optimistic expectations."

Tennis

Nadal squares charity series with Federer: Rafael Nadal of Spain beat Roger Federer of Switzerland 7-6 (7-3), 4-6, 6-1 in Madrid to square a two-match exhibition series for charity between the world's top-ranked players.

Nadal prevailed in front of a capacity crowd at Caja Magica arena that included many of Spain's leading dignitaries.

Nadal said Federer's "gesture to play a game here to raise funds for needy people is incredibly generous."

Federer beat Nadal 4-6, 6-3, 6-3 Tuesday in Zurich, Switzerland.

Austria to host France in aircraft hangar: Austrian Tennis Federation officials said Austria will play France on a clay court in an aircraft hangar in Schwechat, Austria, in the first round of the 2011 Davis Cup.

A hangar being used for airplane maintenance at the airport will be transformed into a 6,000-capacity tennis stadium for the match, which starts March 4.

Austrian player Jurgen Melzer said he doesn't think airplane noise will create a disturbance. He said planes often fly overhead during the U.S. Open in New York and it doesn't seem to bother the players.

Soccer

Union signs midfielder Pfeffer: The Philadelphia Union has signed 15-year-old midfielder Zach Pfeffer as the team's first homegrown player under Major League Soccer rules. He is the fourth-youngest player to sign an MLS contract.

D.C. United signs Najar, 17: Andy Najar, 17, the MLS rookie of the year, signed a multiyear contract with D.C. United.

Horse racing

Preakness to stay at Pimlico: The Maryland Racing Commission approved an agreement that will keep the Preakness Stakes, a state tradition and the second leg of racing's Triple Crown, at Pimlico in Baltimore.

The agreement calls for 146 days of live racing at state tracks. The 2011 Preakness is scheduled for May 21.

Seattle Times news services

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