To paraphrase that great man of letters, Bart Scott, CAN’T WAIT.
To paraphrase that great man of letters, Bart Scott, CAN’T WAIT.
(EDITOR’S NOTE : from time to time, Bronx baseball executive Randy L. graces CSTB with his observations on matters sporting and otherwise. In the wake of SNY “Loudmouths” co-host Chris Carlin calling Yankee captain Derek Jeter “a fraud” earlier this week, Randy offered, no, he insisted on having his say – GC)
Greetings, Yankee Universe (and the small number of this blog’s readers who can get this far without the help of a special-education tutor). The 2014 MLB season has been challenging for all of us. When we broke camp last spring, the organization had 3 simple items on our agenda. The first two — win our 28th World Championship, find a way to escape our contractual obligations to Alex Rodriguez —- have clearly not been completed to anyone’s satisfaction. But the third task on our checklist —- spend the entire year paying homage to the greatness, class and everlasting clutchiness (clutchitude? clutchworthiness?) of my captain and yours, Derek Jeter —- has in my estimation, been handled with all the understated elegance & grace you’ve come to associated with Jeter’s career.
As befitting our modern age, these efforts to honor Derek have not been without detractors. ESPN.com’s Buster Olney has the unmitigated gall to suggest our club would’ve been better off had Jeter been kept out of the lineup, a suggestion so fantastic, I am resisting every urge in body to have this columnist fired and then “disappeared” as some of my friends in the security business like to say.
Suppose, for instance, earlier this year, you purchased a ticket to see the Broadway musical adaptation of “Hedwig and the Angry Inch”, starring the multi-talented Neil Patrick Harris. Though upon arriving at the Belasco Theatre, you’re told that Mr. Harris is indisposed and performing in his place will an understudy, a person with no serious credentials to speak of and relatively little star power, charisma, skill, really, any redeeming qualities whatsoever. For the sake of argument, let’s just call this performer, “Brian Cashman”. Would you, the paying customer, welcome this pretender with open arms? Or would you instead, scream bloody murder and attempt to find the Belasco Theatre’s equivalent of well, me, and demand a refund? I think we already know the answer to this question.
That said, Olney’s attacks on this organization are mild when compared to the slurs delivered by the thoroughly unpleasant Chris Carlin. The latter expressed the ill-founded opinion that Derek Jeter is “a fraud” and seems to consider our shortstop’s Farewell Tour some sort of exercise in egomania.
It would be an understatement to say that I’m shocked. For starters, I don’t know what’s harder to believe, that anyone would pay Carlin to appear on television or that the New York Mets have some sort of cable channel of their own. Though I’m happy to know the production team behind the old Robin Byrd Show (ask your parents….or John Sterling) have landed on their feet with SNY’s “Loudmouths”, who the hell is Chris Carlin to be questioning Derek Jeter’s credibility?
I don’t suppose many of you are familiar with a piece of SNY lowbrow dross called “Beer Money”, but I have it on very good authority that throughout this game show’s run, contestants were routinely fed answers to questions in a manner not unlike the TOTAL SCAM depicted above. So really, Chris, who’s the fucking fraud now? A guy who’ll be in the Hall Of Fame on the first ballot or a local TV/radio schulb whose parting gifts to dates usually consist of penicillin and sealed copies of “Afterlife With Archie”?
But whatever. Who’d pick “Beer Money” or “Loudmouths” when you could watch Michael Kay’s “CenterStage” with Kevin Pollak instead? NOT ME.
Thanks for everything, Derek!
(Blackhorse, far more durable than RGIII)
Earlier this week, Comedy Central’s “The Daily Show” and correspondent Jason Jones solicited Washington R——- fans to participate in a segment that apparently ended with their being confronted by unamused Native Americans. As the Washington Post’s Ian Shapira explains, this wasn’t exactly what the volunteers signed up for.
The encounter at a Dupont Circle hotel was so tense that an Alexandria fan said she left in tears and felt so threatened that she later called the police. She has told “The Daily Show” to leave her out of the segment but doesn’t know whether the producers will comply.
“This goes way beyond mocking. Poking fun is one thing, but that’s not what happened,” said Kelli O’Dell, 56, a former teacher who lives in Alexandria and doesn’t watch the show regularly. “It was disingenuous. The Native Americans accused me of things that were so wrong. I felt in danger. I didn’t consent to that. I am going to be defamed.”
The Native Americans who confronted the Redskins fans — including Amanda Blackhorse, the lead plaintiff in the case that stripped the Redskins of their trademark protections this year and is being appealed — said in interviews that they marched into the room and accused the fans of backing a racist mascot.
“My heart goes out to them because they are people, too,” said Tara Houska, an Ojibwe from Couchiching First Nation who lives in the District and works for the grass-roots group Eradicating Offensive Native Mascotry. “But it’s a weird position for them to take, because someone is crying over the loss of their offensive mascot when I am right there, standing in front of them. I don’t think they’re racist. I think their mascot is racist.”
“Going up against Amanda Blackhorse? It’s like playing football and they’re going to have RGIII,” Hawkins said, referring to injured Redskins quarterback Robert Griffin III. “I am just an average fan. These are activists who have media training and talking points.”
As you’ve probably read by now, ESPN’s “Outside The Lines” made a number of (unsurprising) claims last night regarding the Baltimore Ravens’ knowledge of exactly-what-happened it that Atlantic City hotel elevator between former RB Ray Rice and his fiancee-at-the-time, Janay. Between the club being told details about the incriminating video, Rice’s confession to Ozzie Newsome and owner Steve Bischotti’s “wait ’til all this blows over” tweet to Rice, a picture has been painted of a franchise far more concerned with self-preservation than the truth. If nothing else, the Ravens’ charmed life with Charm City’s Fourth Estate has come to a sputtering halt, with the Baltimore Sun’s Dave Zurawik declaring, “the narrative of the ESPN investigation, which says that Bisciotti, club president Dick Cass and general manager Ozzie Newsome drove that cover-up, is decidedly at odds with the version of events that much of the Baltimore media has embraced once it was shaken out of it years-long ‘In Ozzie We Trust,’ Stepford-Wives-like stupor in covering the team.”
The narrative now being peddled by some in Baltimore media is that it’s all the fault of Goodell and the NFL — they are the evil parties. Of course, the Ravens wanted to help out Ray; that’s because Steve, Dick and Ozzie are good, decent and loyal guys. So, let’s focus our hate on Goodell. That way we can acknowledge that something bad happened in that elevator but not be made to feel unwelcome at the Castle.
The other revelation in the ESPN probe – and I have no way yet of knowing if it is true – is that Coach John Harbaugh wanted to get rid of Rice in February right after TMZ posted the first video. But, the report claims, Harbaugh was overruled by his bosses, the three guys allegedly driving the cover-up.
If that proves to be true, I will have a new and profound respect for Harbaugh. And I will have new contempt for Bisciotti, who sent Harbaugh out alone the night the video was posted to face the firestorm of press coverage it ignited. (Bisciotti subsequently said the day was “so emotionally tough” on him “there was no way” he could have prepared to meet the press that night.)
If a manager receiving a vote of confidence from his club’s GM is commonly thought to be a dreaded occasion, receiving a very public vote of no-confidence-whatsoever probably goes down as super dreaded. And that’s what happened Thursday in Baltimore when Jays General Manager Alex Anthopoulos was quizzed about the status of Toronto skipper John Gibbons. “I don’t know what’s going to happen next year,” mumbled Anthopoulos to the assembled media throng. “I don’t know what’s going to happen with me. I don’t know what Alex, what his plan is.” Yeah, really, who of us can really predict the future? From the National Post’s John Lott :
Someone referred to Gibbons’ remark and asked the GM if he would “take care of” the manager’s job security before the end of the season.
“He’s under contract,” Anthopoulos replied. “He’s always under contract, pretty much. I don’t think there’s anything to take care of, and I think he’s done a good job.”
He’s done a good job. So he will be the manager next year?
“He’s under contract,” Anthopoulos repeated, and here’s where things started to get a bit murky.
“I’ve said this before,” Anthopoulos said. “I’m a big believer that no matter what position — grounds crew, administrative assistant, manager, coach — you support them until you don’t support them.”
Kansas City’s 6-2 defeat of Chicago Wednesday night included Royals fans displaying a Japanese flag in the outfield stands in tribute to OF Nori Aoki. Troube is, as the KC Star pointed out, “it was the flag Japan used in World War II…the Rising Sun flag is known to symbolize Japan’s military, which attacked Pearl Harbor in 1941 and occupied Korea from 1910-45.”
For a mere $39.99 (marked down from $60), Touch Of Modern will sell you the above Citi Field blueprint, featuring “hand-drawn artwork of the park including a plan view, signature elevation view, and architectural details.” I am certain none of this blog’s readers would dream of using such materials in the planning or commission of a violent and/or treasonous act that may or may not bring a particularly evil regime to their knees.
Shropshire’s AFC Telford compete in the Conference Premier, the highest tier in English non-league football, but the lofty heights of last season’s Conference North championship campaign are but a distant memory after a Tuesday evening defeat at Alferton Town, a performance that led manager Liam Watson to declare his charges, well, useless. From the BBC :
“It was totally gutless. I told one or two in the changing room that they can go. I told them ‘go and get yourself a club’,” Watson told BBC Shropshire.
“It was just cowardly and embarrassing. Five or six of them looked out of their depth. They don’t look up to it.”
After seeing his side go in 3-1 down at the break at Alfreton, Watson labelled it “the worst 45 minutes since I’ve been Telford manager, probably of my managerial career”.
He continued: “They were jumping out of tackles. I’ve never seen anything like it. It was shambolic, weak defending.
“They are looking miles out of their depth. They’ve got no heart.”
In the considered view of Yahoo Sports’ David Brown, “excessive swearing should never be tolerated, especially with kids around.” But enough about Wally Backman’s poor prospects of ever becoming Mets manager, telling Bryce Harper that he “fucking sucks” is considered grounds for ejection (provided your seats are close enough that umpires and microphones can hear you).
Introducing the new Dallas Stars mascot. Because there’s nothing more likely to win the hearts of kids and those indifferent to hockey than a mouthless/pantsless homage to the Philly Phanatic.
What sort of world are we living in which public figures cannot face criminal charges for child abuse without the companies who lend their names to his image-burnishing being asked, “would you hit your kids in the genitals with a tree branch?”
Vikings RB Adrian Peterson was reinstated Monday after missing Sunday’s 30-7 home loss to New England that came on the heels of accusations the OU product had physically abused a 4 year-old last spring in Houston. Minnesota’s decision was closely followed by revelations Peterson’s been accused of abusing another of his children, but it seems it’ll take even greater offences for the Vikings to distance themselves from such an otherworldly talent. As the Star-Tribune’s Jim Souhan notes, “when the Wilfs were embarrassed by the Love Boat scandal in 2005, they commissioned a lengthy code of conduct to cleanse an organization that leads the NFL in arrests since 2000…Monday, the Wilfs shredded the code of conduct and spliced it into a pompom with which to cheer a man who admits he beat his son bloody.”
Why not sign Darren Sharper? The former Vikings safety has been accused of sexual assault in three states, but not in Minnesota. He may be able to intercept a few passes between trials.
The Vikings are hiding behind the phrase “due process,’’ which refers to a citizen’s rights in our legal system. “Due process’’ has nothing to do with a company deciding whether it wants to be publicly represented by a man who has admitted to police that he whipped a 4-year-old with a branch until the boy bled, after stuffing leaves in the boy’s mouth and before threatening to punch him if he told anyone.
Sunday, the Wilfs will cheer for Peterson while waving their shredded code of conduct. Evolved Minnesotans should cheer for any Saints defender who may want to stage an impromptu intervention with the big man who beat the little boy.
WFAN announced yesterday that longtime Yankees radio fixtures John Sterling and Suzyn Waldman will return for the 2015 season, with someone who closely resembles one of our most beloved contributors saying of the pair, “they’re friends, they’re great people and they’re part of the Yankee brand.” If that sounds like a less than thorough endorsement for the duo’s chances of winning individual Ford C. Frick Awards, check out Newsday’s Neil Best delivering the damning faint criticism :
Of course it would be nice if Sterling waited for balls to clear the fence before announcing home runs – something for which he remains unapologetic, preferring, he says, to be ahead of calls rather than behind them.
It also would be helpful if he struck a better balance between shtick and game description, and if he let Waldman handle some play-by-play. (Either way, WFAN at some point ought to wedge a younger potential successor into the play-by-play mix to ease the future transition.)
But let’s face it, after 26 seasons without missing a game, Sterling is woven into the fabric of Yankee-land, from his goofy antics to his signature home run calls. And like him or not, he will be missed when he is gone.
And let’s face this, too: While Waldman herself is unconventional and subject to caricature, she also might be the only possible partner for Sterling at this stage. She is a team player who helps smooth the rough edges of Sterling’s mis-calls and patiently puts up with his idiosyncrasies.
The Phillies reliever wasn’t grabbing his crotch, he was simply saying, “WE’RE NUMBER ONE”
There’s no truth, by the way, to the rumor Jon Koncak has offered to serve as Chief Diversity Officer for not one penny more than his average annual salary from ’89-’95.
On October 5, not only is Austin’s Inspire Pro Wrestling hosting a promotion vs. promotion card featuring the high flying CHIKARA PRO, but as you’ll see from the clip above, the former’s Chris Trew.biz has issued a challenge of sorts to NWA Revolution. Tickets for Battlewars at the beautiful/parking-plentiful Marchesa Hall & Theatre are available here.
Not since the heyday of Wayne Root has one man (in this case, America’s foremost champion of the Zubaz revival) provided such uncanny betting advice.
Minneapolis’ WCCO.com reports that Minnesota RB Adrian Peterson has been indicted by a North Montgomery County, TX grand jury on charges of reckless or negligent injury to a child. AP’s status for Sunday versus New England has yet to be clarified, but you have to assume give the events of the past several weeks, the NFL must be aware this has the appearance of a very high profile case of domestic violence.
Sports Radio 610 in Houston obtained a draft of the police report which says Peterson admitted that he did, in his words, “whoop” one of his children last May while the boy was visiting him in Houston.
When the 4-year-old boy returned to Minnesota, his mother took him to a doctor. The police report said the boy told the doctor Peterson had hit him with a branch from a tree.
The doctor told investigators that the boy had a number of lacerations on his thighs, along with bruise-like marks on his lower back and buttocks and cuts on his hand.
The police report says the doctor described some of the marks as open wounds and termed it “child abuse.” Another examiner agreed, calling the cuts “extensive.”
When investigators questioned Peterson, they say he told them he regarded it as a normal spanking and not excessive.
More details from Houston’s Sports 610 :
The beating allegedly resulted in numerous injuries to the child, including cuts and bruises to the child’s back, buttocks, ankles, legs and scrotum, along with defensive wounds to the child’s hands. Peterson then texted the boy’s mother, saying that one wound in particular would make her “mad at me about his leg. I got kinda good wit the tail end of the switch.”
Peterson also allegedly said via text message to the child’s mother that he “felt bad after the fact when I notice the switch was wrapping around hitting I (sic) thigh” and also acknowledged the injury to the child’s scrotum in a text message, saying, “Got him in nuts once I noticed. But I felt so bad, n I’m all tearing that butt up when needed! I start putting them in timeout. N save the whooping for needed memories!”
In further text messages, Peterson allegedly said, “Never do I go overboard! But all my kids will know, hey daddy has the biggie heart but don’t play no games when it comes to acting right.
The New York Post’s Tara Palmeri reports that Cablevision/MSG CEO James Dolan’s oft-ridiculed generic “blues”/rock combo, JD & The Straight Shot, will support the Eagles at the World’s Most Dysfunctional Arena this Saturday night. Dolan, who has previously opened for the Eagles at Met Life Stadium and made thoroughly unwelcome appearances at the Bonnaroo and Austin City Limits Festivals (ATP has remained elusive, however), generally won’t discuss his handling of the New York Knicks with local media, but happily told Palmeri, “the artist in me needs to be free”.
“I’m entitled to my opinion,” he said. “I am not the chairman, CEO, etc., standing up there on that stage. I am the singer-songwriter.”
Dolan seems to have made himself the Springsteen for the 1 percent — a Boss who complains about taxes and lambastes politicians who have crossed him personally, such as ex-Gov. Eliot Spitzer.
His ballad “Fall from Grace” is based on the disgraced love gov, with lyrics such as: “See the shame on your face/Look at what you’ve become/And smiling at your fall from grace.”
The lyrical diss was inspired by a nasty fight the two had over relocating the Garden in 2008.
“He [Spitzer] threatened me at the meeting,” Dolan said. “We were figuring we were going to have a big fight, and on Monday he started not being the governor anymore.”
In another ditty, “Governor’s Song,” Dolan takes a pot shot at Mayor de Blasio for not caring about the “1 percent.”
“If you dare to call the mayor, taxes got your goat, well he don’t care,” he warbles. “Cause you’re a millionaire, and he didn’t get your vote.”
(BONUS : Dolan and The Straight Shot’s meditative take on the shooting of Trayvon Martin)
I haven’t thought much about proto-bro Matt Ufford since he was trying to justify to TV reporters why it was necessary to run photos of a teenage pole-vaulter. At the time, the best retort one of Ufford’s cronies could come up with was something along the lines of, “at least he didn’t aid & abet GG Allin”, and yes, that’s very true. Few will ever accuse Ufford of being a patron of the fine arts.
On Thursday, Awful Announcing’s Sarah Sprague sought to compare and contrast the amount of journalistic range afforded women in the sports media trade (ie. not much) with the freewheelin’ Ufford’s widely lauded, “PEOPLE VS. THE NFL : AFTER AN OFFSEASON IN WHICH THE NFL GOT ALMOST EVERYTHING WRONG, A LIFELONG FAN REFLECTS ON SHAME, LOVE, FATHERHOOD, AND THE FUTURE OF THE LEAGUE” published by SB Nation, but not without disclosing, “Ufford and I both write at the NFL humor site Kissing Suzy Kolber, but our interaction is minimal at best.” So there’s some silver lining.
I winced before I was done with the slug line describing what was to come in the piece. Fatherhood. Ufford was now joining the ranks of male sportswriters who were going to tell us what it all meant in the context of their child, a ploy I find repelling. Ufford’s piece was well-written, but once the reader reached the final chapter in the post titled “Hope,” one could not help but brace for the pap that was coming. Words that in my heart of hearts, I know that if a female sportswriter had put them to keyboard they would have been seen as soft, not on point, and probably one of the worst insults, like a Mommy Blogger.
Male sportswriters live in a world where having emotions allows them to continue the chain of sports being a father-child activity and roundly get praised for writing so honestly, Pam Oliver speaking honestly is humiliated. Male emotions get heralded as a concession for having them in the first place like a normal human being.
In the immediate aftermath of the attacks on New York and Washington DC that occurred on September 11, 2001, Olympia’s Unwound were forced to cancel their show that night at Cambridge, MA’s Middle East.
Perhaps recognizing the adage, “if you don’t create an Unwound show with cardboard cut-outs in place of Justin, Vern and Sarah, the terrorists have already won,” the below video clip was produced.
Leave it to New York Mets COO Jeff Wilpon (above, left) to murder the good vibes generated by the club’s unlikely late run at .500. The New York Times’ Richard Sandomir reports that self-styled ballpark architect / genetic lottery
loser winner Wilpon is the target of a discrimination suit alleging the Mets fired ticket executive Leigh Castergine for being pregnant out of wedlock.
Castergine said Wilpon fired her last month in retaliation for complaining about him to the team’s human resources department. Among other things, she said Wilpon told her that “when she gets a ring, she will make more money and get a bigger bonus.”
Castergine, who was hired after the 2010 season, said in her court papers that she modernized the team’s ticket-sales operation, received raises of $50,000 in both 2012 and 2013 and a $125,000 bonus in 2013, and earned a promotion to senior vice president
She described an environment in which she quoted Wilpon saying at a meeting: “I am as morally opposed to putting an e-cigarette sign in my ballpark as I am to Leigh having this baby without being married.” She said that higher-level executives did nothing about Wilpon’s remarks and that the head of human resources urged her to quit.
Air Traffic Controllers at 5pm. 85% of the world is at work, the other 15% will be at 12th and Chicon (watching Men’s Room during our set)