How Justin Verlander and Kate Upton gave their wedding a sports feel

Big League Stew
<a class="link rapid-noclick-resp" href="/mlb/players/7590/" data-ylk="slk:Justin Verlander">Justin Verlander</a> and Kate Upton were married on Nov. 4 in Italy. (People)
Justin Verlander and Kate Upton were married on Nov. 4 in Italy. (People)

Sports deeply impacted the preparation for the extravagant wedding of Houston Astros pitcher Justin Verlander and actress/model Kate Upton last month in Tuscany, Italy. So it’s only fitting that the happy couple found a way to give the proceedings a sports type feel.

Rather than stress about something out of their control, Upton says they just had fun with it. As she recently explained to Vogue, that included making plans to put guests in uniforms for something they called the “Uplander Olympics.”

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“It was really important to Justin and me that it feel like we were on vacation with our closest friends and family,” Kate explains. “We set up an entire afternoon dedicated to interactive games, which we called the Uplander Olympics. Each guest received game-day rules, and everyone was divided into teams with custom Under Armour jerseys. The games included a ping-pong tournament, cornhole, a football toss, relay races, and an epic water balloon fight!”

When they said dream wedding, they weren’t kidding. That sounds like all kinds of fun.

As you’ll recall, Verlander and Upton ended up being later than expected arrivals to their own Nov. 4 wedding after Verlander’s Astros needed seven games to defeat the Los Angeles Dodgers in the World Series. The prolonged series forced Verlander to miss the team’s championship parade in Houston, which annoyed some fans. But even with the couple skipping the parade it essentially took a buzzer beater for them to arrive in time.

Such is life when you plan a wedding so close to the biggest event in one of the participant’s professional careers. Though Verlander was with a non-contending team in the Detroit Tigers throughout most of the wedding planning, the possibility always existed for him to be traded to a contender. When that happened in August, the pressure was not only on for Verlander to win, but for the wedding to still go off without a hitch.

Fortunately, it did. The Uplander Olympics ended up being just a bonus.

Upton released photos and other details of the wedding too in the Vogue interview. Those included a fireworks show and even some late-night karaoke.

Unfortunately our invitation got lost in the mail, but we’re happy for everyone who attended and was able to experience this wonderful wedding with them.

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Mark Townsend is a writer for Yahoo Sports Have a tip? Email him at or follow him on Twitter!

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