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Homer three-peat earns Panda high praise

Homer three-peat earns Panda high praise

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Homer three-peat earns Panda high praise
SAN FRANCISCO -- Attention, Pablo Sandoval. The President is tweeting.

In this case, the president is Venezuela's Hugo Chavez, who saluted his slugging countryman after Sandoval hit his third home run in Wednesday's Game 1 of the World Series.

Chavez's tweet translated roughly to, "Well, there goes the third! Pablo for history! Viva Venezuela!"

That was among the avalanche of reaction to Sandoval's record-tying feat. Sandoval said Thursday that he received 300 text messages from family and friends.

"You know, I still can't believe it," Sandoval said. "But you have to realize what's going on right now in your life. So you have to keep your head up and keep focused."

Baseball Commissioner Bud Selig was also inspired by Sandoval's effort.

"You can't dream about stuff like that. That's what makes it an amazing game," Selig said. "He did something last night that if you dreamt about it, they probably would want to find out what's wrong with you."

Though Sandoval already was well-known in Venezuela, his Game 1 performance likely raised his profile significantly in his native country. Fans there are so ardent that some Venezuelan ballplayers wear disguises to maintain privacy when they return home. But Sandoval said that he wouldn't resort to this ploy.

"I'm the kind of guy that spends time with fans out there, spends time with kids," he said. "That's what makes me happy out there."

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