September 2, 2019

Justin Verlander pitched the third no-hitter of his career on Sunday, leading the Houston Astros to a 2-0 victory over the Toronto Blue Jays.

Verlander (17-5) struck out 14 batters, a crowning achievement in a dominant season. He is the sixth pitcher in Major League Baseball history to throw three or more career no-hitters, The Associated Press reports. The others include legendary pitchers Sandy Koufax, Cy Young, and Nolan Ryan, who holds the record with seven no-hitters.

Verlander said he was "definitely aware" that he was making history. "It means a lot," Verlander said. "I'd be lying if I said I didn't know that. I've come so close. Since I've had two, I think I've blown two in the ninth and another couple in the eighth." Harold Maass

May 15, 2019

Jeff Koons' stainless steel sculpture "Rabbit" set a record on Wednesday when it sold for more than $91 million at Christie's in New York City.

"Rabbit" is now the most expensive piece by a living artist to sell at auction. Christie's had estimated "Rabbit" would sell for between $50 and $70 million, and the winning bid was $80 million — auctioneer's fees brought the final amount to $91,075,000.

The sculpture was created in 1986, and is over three feet tall. It comes from the collection of the late publisher S.I. Newhouse; there are two other "Rabbit" sculptures in the world, with one owned by the Broad Foundation in Los Angeles and the other promised to the Museum of Contemporary Art in Chicago, CNN reports. In November, David Hockney's "Portrait of an Artist (Pool with Two Figures)" set the now-shattered record for most expensive work by a living artist to sell at auction, going for $90.3 million. Catherine Garcia

May 6, 2019

Some very qualified people have a very big wakeup call for President Trump.

After a 2-year investigation into Russian election interference, Special Counsel Robert Mueller left the decision of charging Trump with obstruction of justice up to Attorney General William Barr, and Barr declined to levy those charges. But if it weren't for a Department of Justice policy protecting a sitting president from indictment, Trump would be facing "multiple felony charges for obstruction of justice," 379 former federal prosecutors say in a letter posted to Medium on Monday.

The letter opens with an introduction from the "former federal prosecutors," who say they "served under both Republican and Democratic administrations" and in positions as high as "senior officials at the Department of Justice." They all agree the Mueller report "describes several acts that satisfy all of the elements for an obstruction charge," which include Trump's efforts to "fire" Mueller and "limit the scope of" his investigation. The letter then spells out the details of those purported charges, and finishes with the prosecutors saying that "prosecuting obstruction of justice cases is critical because unchecked obstruction  ... puts our whole system of justice at risk."

As of 2 p.m. ET Monday, there were 379 signatories on the list, but the letter welcomed more. They include former Massachusetts Gov. Bill Weld, who served in former President Ronald Reagan's DOJ and is now challenging Trump in the GOP primaries. Former President George H.W. Bush's Deputy Attorney General Donald Ayer is there, as is a principal assistant to Rudy Giuliani when he worked in Reagan's DOJ. Their careers run as far back as the Eisenhower presidency, The Washington Post notes. Read the whole letter and see its signers here. Kathryn Krawczyk

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