When “That Guy” turns into Sandy Koufax

When the pitcher who was 3-12 coming into the game throws a complete game two-hitter, that’s pretty bad.

When you have as many errors as hits, that’s pretty bad.

When you have a fan base that continues to make excuses through this disappointing Nationals season…

well, that’s just me and my friends being foolishly optimistic about the future.

Go, Nats!

Sox faaaar out front

With their loss last night the New York Yankees fell 10 1/2 games back of the AL East-leading Boston Red Sox. Nothing to be ashamed of, really. The Yankees still have the second-best record in baseball. That’s right. The Red Sox are 10 1/2 games up on the world right now at 86-36.

Know what they’d be if they played in the NL West? Twenty and a half games up. On second place.

The best record in the NL actually belongs to the Chicago Cubs at 70-50. That’s 15 games back of the Red Sox. Say the Sox played .500 the rest of the way. For the Cubs to top them for best record in MLB they’d have to go 37-5 during that span.

For reference, the 1951 Giants went 37-7.

Dear Sports Gods

Dear Sports Gods,

 

Thank you for providing me and a certain Mr. Woods a few moments of rekindled youth yesterday afternoon at the PGA Championship. Tiger’s second-place finish following his lowest score ever on a major championship Sunday gives me hope that yes, one day I might actually see this man win another major.

Wow.

Less cool was the moment five hours later when my hometown Washington Nationals turned in a “second-place” finish of their own at Wrigley Field.

Seriously? Down three and down to your last strike? Bases loaded? And the batter hits a grand slam? That doesn’t really happen, right? That’s just the scenario you make up in the backyard as a kid, not something that actually occurs in real life.

Thanks, sports gods. Thanks.

Phreebie

The band that can sell out Madison Square Garden every night for two weeks does not need me to advertise for them. Still the same, I do like to note noteworthy things.

The musical Phish of Vermont travel to the Tar Heel State tonight to play a show in Raleigh, at the venue once called Walnut Creek. (There’s more to it now.) Phish plays dozens of shows a year… why is this one noteworthy?

You can watch it free.

Yeah. Can’t make it to NC tonight? Head here. Printed ticket time is 7 p.m. The old guys in the band probably won’t want to start too late after that.

This old guy feels the same way.

Time to celebrate: Break out the Great Bluedini

My favorite beverage growing up, without a doubt, was Great Bluedini Kool-Aid. When I was a kid I used to have an official Kool-Aid Man pitcher, and I filled it with that antifreeze-like product so often in time it was permanently stained blue.

Didn’t bother me at all.

I’ve found it difficult to pinpoint the exact date the Kool-Aid company discontinued that marvelous flavor. Seems as though it was available in different markets at different times. I’m not sure the last time I bought one of those mix packets but I’m pretty sure the year started with 19.

But buy them I did. Many, many of them when I knew they would no longer be available. (Remember that episode of Seinfeld with Elaine and the sponges? It was like that.)

I saved them, of course, and brought them out only on special occasions. About 10 years ago I had three left, and decided I’d keep those for truly momentous events.

The first was consumed on June 7, 2012. That was the day I turned 30.

The second was consumed on March 7, 2014. That was the day we brought my newborn son home from the hospital. (He did not have any.)

The third was consumed last night: August 7, 2018. And this time, my son did have some. Yesterday was my final day of summer camp… ever. I’m starting a new job tomorrow, noteworthy enough to break out the blue stuff.

I suppose a gig is a gig; Kool-Aid, however, has no equal to Great Bluedini.

Cheers!

Kids from one to ninety-two

The timeless and incomparable (insert other clichés here) Tony Bennett turned 92 years old this past Friday. He gave us the present, dropping another musical gem upon us like a gift from the gods. Just another day at the office for the man who’s done it so brilliantly for longer than most of us have been on this planet.

Tony’s 2018 rendition of “Fascinating Rhythm” is but a single track from his forthcoming album with Diana Krall. Joined again by the Bill Charlap Trio, Tony sounds better than ever. And I’ve been saying that my whole life. Pardon the expression, but he doesn’t even need Diana, musically, saleswise, or otherwise.

There’s a reason Frank Sinatra once called him “the best in the business.”

Because he is.

This is offensive

Tuesday night my hometown Washington Nationals scored a franchise record 25 runs in their rout of the New York Mets. You can read about it here or just scroll down a little.

Last night the Nats put up only 10 against the Reds, supporting the guy who needs no support, Max Scherzer.

Big offensive numbers are an anomaly these days, right? Hitting is way down and pitching is dominant? Everyone out there is Max Scherzer?

Consider that last night not only did the Nats score 10 runs, but the Red Sox scored 15 (against the Yankees no less). The Rangers put up 17 against the Orioles, and in L.A. the Dodgers scored 21 against the Milwaukee Brewers. (Not exactly Milwaukee’s best.)

Yup, no offense in today’s game.

Thanks can go here

Touchdown, field goal, field goal, field goal, field goal. Those were the Nationals’ first five innings yesterday. Add a sixer in their last ups and you’ve got 25 runs, and a 25-4 thrashing of the New York Mets.

You might recall my chastising the Nats last Wednesday for their poor play. Goaded them into this one and I’m takin’ credit for it!

“Summer” is flying by

I used to think of the end of July as sort of the midway point of summer. You still had a whole month (and a little more) of summer left. Now, with school starting in early August (and back-to-school sales starting at the end of June) the midway point actually happened a long time ago.

Whoops.

Gotta get a month’s worth of summer vacation in this week…