Thursday, April 10, 2008

Alexis Marshall's Husband Gets 1st MLB Save

In a game that championship teams win, the Cubs overcame unclutch relief pitching to beat the Pirates in 15 innings. And, who picked up his first major league save? The favorite pitcher of a certain Phoenix television personality...

Kudos to Ryan Dempster for his incredible one-hit pitching over seven innings and Feliz Pie for keeping his head up and getting the big hit in the 15th.

Wednesday, April 09, 2008

Frank Deford Column about the Dying Olympics

There is something wonderfully ironic about the Olympic torch, which is making its journey around the world with what appears to be, a big "KICK ME" sign on it for China.

Ah, what goes around ...

The torch was conjured up out of whole cloth by the Nazis for the 1936 Berlin Games, and then embedded in our dreamy Olympic consciousness by the magnificent gossamer photography of Leni Riefenstahl, Hitler's favorite movie maker. Now, three-quarters of a century later, the torch has come back as an unexpected curse to haunt another totalitarian government to which the International Olympic Committee has hitched its wagon.

The ignominy that China is going to endure with protests, which will cling like moths to the torch e're it goes, will far exceed whatever positive attention China might receive when the Olympics are in the world limelight for a fortnight in the dead of summer.

The reflected heat from the torch uproar will also help expose what a humbug the IOC can be. This is the organization that loves to call itself a "movement." Come on, would we accept it at face value if baseball commissioner Bud Selig stood up and crowed about the "Major League Baseball Movement?" Would we bow our heads if Mayor Oscar Goodman asked us to pay homage to the "Las Vegas Strip Movement?" Get serious.

There's no real difference, but only the IOC still calls itself a movement and gets away with it. Hey, it's no more than an international cartel that puts on a big show every four years. It's just NASCAR with accents. And to tell you the truth, I think the Olympics are yesterday's party. Once upon a time -- before globalism and jet airplanes and cyberspace -- bringing athletes together quadrennially in one place might have made sense. Today, it's an unnecessary excess. And while insular Americans may not understand this, soccer's World Cup has become much more important to many more people worldwide.

The Olympics has really ended up as a festival for those sports that nobody much cares about for the other three years and 50 weeks. The showcase is track and field, but how many of you can even name a single American track athlete in this year's Games? How many of you can name a single track athlete from any nation? The Olympics is a symphony orchestra without the violins and brass.

But hooray for all the Olympic athletes. Please, everybody, just threaten to boycott, but let the athletes all go to Beijing and have their day in the smog. It was so unfair when, in 1980, President Carter sacrificed our Olympians to make a point against the Soviet Union. But as the torch wends its way, spreading the bad news, I really think we might be seeing more than a censure of China. We may also be witness to the start of the Olympics' real decline.
I love London. I wish it hadn't got itself stuck with the 2012 Games. I love Chicago. I hope it gets lucky and doesn't get stuck with the 2016 Games. Every dog has its day. No movement is perpetual.

I met Frank Deford at an obscure sporting event, and, at the time, he was much more positive towards the "Olympic Movement" or at least the "athletes." I agree with everything he says except about the idea of a boycott. Boycott these Games, and the athletes can find something better to do with their lives. Like anything.

Thursday, April 03, 2008


The post title is simply to catch Google traffic, but I think this was a smart hire, blah blah blah. For me, the best part of this is that my brother-in-law is the spitting image of Coach Crean.

Well, this has me relieved. Ted Kitchel is OK with this hire. After telling anyone that would listen that he wouldn’t let Kelvin Sampson coach a seventh grade girls team, he let the Indiana Daily Student know that he was gratified that Crean would give him a call.

Another self-righteous guy stuck in his Glory Days, Kent Benson, even got a shout out at the beginning of Crean’s press conference, which is unfortunately some lip service he is forced to pay. I guess he had to say that before he announced he would not be running the precious motion offense. Benson, you may remember, stopped going to IU games to protest Sampson. Like anyone gives a shit what this has-been has to say. If he was such a hero, he would not have lost his campaign for state Secretary of State.