Forever fall

Seventy degrees in the forecast today. Sun. Leaves falling gently to the ground. Cool evenings. Good sleeping weather.

Sweater weather.

Is there a way we can travel the world and experience perpetual fall, like an autumnal version of The Endless Summer?

Just let it be fall forever.

Things to consider

People win the lottery every day.

Something like 1,000 people a year are struck by lightning.

Remember when the Chicago Cubs won the World Series?

Things to keep in mind as we approach this Election Day.

Anything can happen.

McDonald’s adds “new” breakfast items

My sources tell me that McDonald’s this week has added new items to its breakfast bakery menu, its first additions in nearly a decade.

Blueberry muffin, apple fritter, and cinnamon roll.

Wow.

Took ’em 10 years to come up with that one.

Great job, guys.

You ever think about serving the french fries and hamburgers together as a meal? Maybe throw a soda in there too?

That would be something.

L.A. goes for two

I’m not sure whether you heard it here first but you definitely heard it here on October 7. And last night the Los Angeles Dodgers completed the L.A. championship double, a Lakers-Dodgers combo not seen since, well, the last time the Dodgers won the World Series in 1988. That year we had to wait a whole summer for the baseball season to play out. This year those same teams won their championships less than three weeks apart.

My God let’s hope that never happens again.

Yeah, World Series is pretty great

That play.

Good God, that play. Saturday night (actually early Sunday morning), bottom of the ninth inning, Game Four of the World Series.

What was that?

In a word? It was amazing.

I made my son watch it 15 times when he got up the next morning.

It was like Carlton Fisk, except the blooper reel version.

I wrote the following in my journal… note to self: hit up that final play on youtube whenever you look at this.

That about sums it up.

Can’t. Wait. For. Game. Six.

My two favorite things are math and baseball

On this day in 1928, one Edward Charles Ford was born in New York City. You know him better as Whitey, and he passed away two weeks ago just shy of his 92nd birthday. (Read here for more.)

When I was a kid, Whitey Ford had the highest winning percentage of any pitcher in the history of the game. Well, sort of. There were two qualifications to the list: 1.) must have played after 1900; and 2.) must have at least 200 decisions. That second one is the “Spud Chandler Rule,” named for the one-time Yankee ace who finished his career with a .717 winning percentage, but pitched more than a dozen games in only seven big-league seasons. Ford’s career “winning percentage” (I always enjoy pointing out to my students that these are never expressed as percentages) is .690, which I always thought was kind of cool because that number is also Babe Ruth’s career slugging percentage.

Also a record.

Also not a percentage.

But much safer as records go.

Enter one Clayton Edward Kershaw. (You may have seen him on the mound last night.) “Kersh” just finished his 13th major league season, and his career winning percentage is .697. He is, in fact, the game’s all-time leader in winning percentage, even considering the 200-decision rule. Kershaw’s lifetime record is 175-76, a few wins shy of Whitey but a better percentage nonetheless.

There’s just one thing…

With a few notable exceptions (they’re notable because they’re infrequent), everyone tails off at the end of his career. Even Whitey Ford. Had Ford stopped pitching in 1964, not 1967, his lifetime record would have been 206-84. That’s .710. He was a sub-.500 pitcher his final three seasons.

Pedro Martinez actually had old Slick beat when he retired in 2005. Except he didn’t retire in 2005 with a career winning percentage of .701. He threw four more years (at more than $10 million a year), tacking 22 wins and 16 losses on his career record. Not bad for your average pitcher, but .579 doesn’t get you in the record books. His final tally was .687.

Let us begin the “Kershaw watch.”

Say Clay pitches a few more years and matches Whitey’s win total of 236. He’ll have to do it with 30 losses or fewer. Sixty-one and twenty-nine is .678. That’s good for an aging pitcher, and I’d hardly call Kid K aging yet.

Yet.

But without a World Series ring, nobody gonna care anyway.

Still good in the end

Coronavirus cheated us out of more than 100 games of regular season action for each team this MLB season.

Postseason? I do not feel cheated.

Two seven-game series that end with–I think–the best teams in baseball going to the World Series. Yup, even in shortened seasons the best teams really do rise to the top.

And with the Rays and Dodgers facing off we are guaranteed either the city of Los Angeles or the city of Tampa Bay will come away with the unprecedented (and hopefully never duplicated) “double” of two major sports championships in a month’s time.

Wow.

It’s been a weird year, but yeah, this is going to be good.