UConn coach Geno Auriemma defends Baylor’s Kim Mulkey for controversial COVID test comments

MLB opening day 2021: Fun facts, milestones for the upcoming baseball season

After a long winter without baseball, fans can finally look forward to enjoying the National Pastime every day for the next seven months (except for a couple days off during the All-Star break).

To celebrate the start of the 2021 season, here are some fun facts to remember as you root on your favorite team or if you feel like quizzing your fellow fanatics. 

OPENING DAY 2021:MLB opens season with full, 15-game slate

NEW SEASON:  21 dates to circle on the 2021 MLB schedule

STADIUMS OPEN:  How MLB teams will address COVID-19 protocols with fans

The stats and information come from MLB, with research and special assistance from the Elias Sports Bureau.

Softbank Corp says new CEO to buy 20 billion yen of company shares

FILE PHOTO: The logo of SoftBank Group Corp is displayed at SoftBank World 2017 conference in Tokyo, Japan, July 20, 2017. REUTERS/Issei Kato

TOKYO (Reuters) – Japan’s Softbank Corp said its newly-appointed Chief Executive Junichi Miyakawa was buying 20 billion yen $180.55 million) worth of the company’s shares.

SoftBank will provide financing to Miyakawa for the share purchases, it said in a statement.

Eurozone Inflation Accelerates In March

Eurozone consumer prices accelerated at a faster pace in March driven by a rebound in energy cost, flash data from Eurostat revealed on Wednesday.

Inflation advanced to 1.3 percent in March, in line with expectations, from 0.9 percent in February. This was the third consecutive rise in prices.

Meanwhile, core inflation that excludes energy, food, alcohol & tobacco, eased to 0.9 percent from 1.1 percent in February. Economists had forecast the rate to rise to 1.2 percent.

Inflation is likely to rise above 2 percent in the second half of the year, Jack Allen-Reynolds, an economist at Capital Economics, said. But this is largely due to temporary factors that are likely to fade in 2022 and fall back to 1 percent.

On a monthly basis, the harmonized index of consumer prices was up 0.9 percent. Final data is due on April 16.

Among components of HICP, energy prices showed the biggest annual growth of 4.3 percent. Food, alcohol and tobacco rose 1.1 percent and services cost climbed 1.3 percent. Non-energy industrial goods prices gained only 0.3 percent.

In March, harmonized inflation accelerated in Germany, France and Spain, while it eased in Italy to 0.6 percent from 1.0 percent in February.

Germany’s inflation advanced to 2 percent from 1.6 percent in February. Likewise, France’s inflation climbed to 1.4 percent from 0.8 percent. Spain inflation increased sharply to 1.2 percent from -0.1 percent in February.

Investment Firm’s Collapse Put Unseen Risks on Full Display

Archegos Capital Management’s use of swaps helped conceal its exposure to huge blocks of shares but showed once again how lightly regulated derivatives can shake the financial system.

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Herald afternoon quiz: April 1

Test your brains with the Herald’s afternoon quiz. Be sure to check back on for the morning quiz tomorrow.

To challenge yourself with more quizzes, CLICK HERE.

Japan announces emergency response in Osaka area to curb Covid-19 cases

TOKYO (REUTERS) – Japan’s Economy Minister Yasutoshi Nishimura said on Thursday (April 1) that emergency response measures would be taken in the Osaka area to prevent spread of the coronavirus.

The measures would last from April 5 until May 5, said Nishimura, who also heads the nation’s Covid-19 response.

The Osaka prefectural governor sounded the alarm on Wednesday over a fresh wave of infections that could become the worst yet for the area.

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UConn coach Geno Auriemma defends Baylor’s Kim Mulkey for controversial COVID test comments

Baylor women's basketball coach Kim Mulkey created an uproar Monday night when she suggested doing away with COVID-19 testing at the Final Four. However, Connecticut coach Geno Auriemma, whose Huskies defeated the Lady Bears in their Elite Eight matchup, said Wednesday, "There were some facts behind what she was saying." 

After the game, Mulkey questioned how a player's positive test could impact her participation in and possibly the outcome of a Final Four game. 

"So you need to just forget the COVID test and let the four teams that are playing in each Final Four go battle it out,” she said.

Though her words received nearly universal criticism, Mulkey's comments didn't "come out of nowhere with no context," Auriemma said Wednesday.