1. Clips Ahoy!
Buffalo Braves San Diego Los Angeles Clippers, with last night’s 48-point evisceration of their co-tenants, the Los Angeles Tankers, have now won six straight. First-year coach Doc Rivers has performed a heart transplant on this franchise and it’s taking. Look closely and you will see what may be the most dangerous team in the Western conference.
—Blake Griffin: He has learned to shoot the 15-to-18 footer, and he gets the calls down low.
—Chris Paul: Now healthy again, one of the two to three best point guards in the league.
—DeAndre Jordan: Doing the dirty work, leads the NBA in rebounds and field goal percentage and he even buried both free throws in the final minute versus the Phoenix Suns on Tuesday.
–Sharp-shooters: Jamal Crawford, Matt Barnes and J.J. Redick are all hired guns from beyond the arc, and veterans as well.
–And Darren Collison is a silky player, normally the fastest dude on the court.
Keep an eye on the Clips. Staples Center will have an NBA Finals contender again this spring, just in a different uniform.
2. Rose Bud
So my old friend Kostya Kennedy is a senior editor at Sports Illustrated who, when the mood strikes him as it did for his Joe DiMaggio biography, is the most gifted writer on the staff. He’s also penned a book on Pete Rose, baseball’s all-time hits leader, and lately has been taking to stumping for Rose to be enshrined in The Hall. A couple of months ago Kostya wrote an Op-Ed for the New York Times lobbying for The Hit King, and yesterday SI.com ran a similar essay on its site.
Will Leitch of Sports On Earth disagrees. Although I’d say that Leitch’s argument is less about why gambling is so wrong as it is based on the fact that use of PEDs is not as deleterious to the integrity of the game as gambling. Maybe not, but Leitch often sounds like one of those climate change truthers when discussing PEDs. He just keeps parroting the idea that we don’t truly know the damaging effects of PEDs without bothering to even know the difference between a covalent and ionic bond. I think a lot of scientists who have devoted their lives to hormone and steroid research are quite certain that they have long-lasting ill effects.
3. Seinfeld and Fallon
So, after Jerry appeared on “The Tonight Show” during Fallon’s first week as host, he stuck around to answer questions from the audience (it only appears on-line). What does it say about television that this segment is more relaxed and enjoyable than any guest-in-the-chair segment you’d normally see from Fallon?
4. Thunder from Down Under!
This was the view in Sydney yesterday as a late summer thunderstorm swept across Bondi Bay, etc. Russell Crowe immediately began collecting animals two by two.
4. The Medium Happy Bibliofiles: The Goldfinch
A terrorist blast at the Metropolitan Museum of Art has left Theo Decker an eighth-grade orphan. It has also left him the possessor of a priceless painting, a secret he maintains throughout his adolescence and early adulthood. Donna Tartt, who pens novels even less frequently than Daniel Day-Lewis acts, weaves a modern-day Oliver Twist tale that encompasses contemporary York City (shout-outs to both The White Horse and JG Melon, as well as my ND classmate Thom Browne), Las Vegas, sports gambling, furniture restoration, antiquing, and the effects of all types of mind-altering drugs.
Charter Inductees: Ty Cobb, Walter Johnson, Christy Mathewson, Babe Ruth, Honus Wagner 1937: Tris Speaker, CF; Cy Young, P ; 1938: Grover Cleveland Alexander, P; Eddie Collins, 2B;1939:Nap Lajoie, 2B; Joe Jackson, LF; 1940: Billy Hamilton, OF; Cap Anson, 1B; 1941: Wee Willie Keeler, RF; George Sisler, 1B; 1942: Rogers Hornsby, 2B; Pie Traynor, 3B; 1943: Mickey Cochrane, C; Frankie Frisch, 2B 1944: Ed Walsh, P; Old Hoss Radbourn, P 1945: Lou Gehrig, 1B; Kid Nichols, P 1946: Ed Delahanty, LF; Lefty O’Doul 1947: Pud Galvin, P; John McGraw, INF 1948: Carl Hubbell, P; Addie Joss, P 1949: Harry Heilman, OF/1B; Monte Ward, P/SS
1950: Cool Papa Bell, CF; Jimmie Foxx, 1B 1951: Mordecai “Three Finger” Brown, P; Josh Gibson, C 1952: Paul Waner, RF; Charlie Gehringer, 2B 1953: Mel Ott, RF; Hank Greenberg, 1B1954: Eddie Plank, P; Dan Brouthers, 1B 1955: “Wahoo” Sam Crawford, OF; John Clarkson, P1956: Chief Bender, P; Bill Dickey, C 1957: Sam Rice, RF; Joe DiMaggio, CF 1958: Bill Terry, 1B; Heinie Manush, LF 1959: Dizzy Dean, P; Tim Keefe, P 1960: Gabby Hartnett, C; Mickey Welch, P1961: Bob Feller, P; Ducky Medwick, LF 1962: Luke Appling, SS; Jesse Burkett, LF 1963 Jackie Robinson, 2B; Zack Wheat, LF 1964: Jake Beckley, 1B; Rube Waddell, P 1965: Ralph Kiner, 1B; Lefty Grove, P 1966: Ted Williams, LF; Smoky Joe Wood, P/OF 1967: Roy Campanella, C; Max Carey, OF 1968: Goose Goslin, LF; Rabbit Maranville, SS 1969: Stan Musial, 1B/OF 1970: Ferris Fain, 1B; Earle Combs, CF 1971: Warren Spahn, P; Yogi Berra, C 1972 Satchel Paige, P; Sandy Koufax, P
Robin Roberts, P; 1948-1966, Philadelphia Phillies
A seven-time All-Star, Roberts compiled six consecutive 20-win seasons, including a 28-7 year in 1952. On May 13, 1954, he gave up a lead-off home run to start the game versus the Red Legs, then retired the next 27 batters in an 8-1 win. What is true: Roberts was also a captain of the Michigan State basketball team. What is not: he is one of the hosts of “Good Morning, America.”
Edward Charles “Whitey” Ford; 1950-1967, New York Yankees
“The Chairman of the Board” of those Damn Yankees! era teams, Ford’s feat extend beyond his fame as the ace of the pinstripes. Only two pitchers have a higher career won-loss % than Ford’s .690: Al Spalding, who pitched in the 19th century (252-65, .795), and Spud Chandler, a fellow Yankee who pitched in the ’30s and ’40s but only won a 109 games (109-43, .717). Ford went 236-106, appeared in 10 All-Star Games, won one Cy Young and one World Series MVP award, and was a six-time World Series champion. He also grew up in Astoria, Queens, probably closer to Yankee Stadium than any Hall of Famer ever did.
Sunday: HBO 9 p.m.
Carcosa… a yellow king… God botherers…men who mow lawns. All of the questions will be answered, except perhaps the one about whether or not death is the end. Marty and Rust may be my favorite platonic male love story since Andy and Red. I’ll miss them.