by John Walters

Starting Five

The A Train Stops Here*

*The judges are here to tell you that actually, it doesn’t, though the D and the 4 do.

For the past three months, the Oakland A’s were baseball’s en fuego grande. Billy Beane’s team, with baseball’s lowest payroll, was 34-36 on the morning of June 16. They went 63-29 the rest of the way, but could never quite catch the Yankees in the AL wild card home-field advantage chase (they came as close as one game back on September 13).

Hechavarria, whom the Yanks acquired on the last day of August, went skyward to rob the A’s of a double in the 7th.

Last night in the Bronx, that seemed to make all the difference. Luis Severino had, unlike last year, an unadventurous top of the first, then Aaron Judge smacked a two-run laser to left as the Yankees’s second batter. The Bombers broke it open in the sixth on a Judge excuse-me double followed by an Aaron Hicks triple, followed by a Luke Voit triple off the top of the wall in right.

Yanks 7, A’s 2. We Want Boston!

2. Swift, But Is It Justice?

Give us your vaginas!

Since when does anyone in the federal government hand in their homework on time, much less nearly two days early? The FBI, which pursued the Bart O’Kavanaugh case with the dogged zeal of, well, Scooby Doo entering a haunted amusement park, submitted its findings last night. Mitch McConnell and his crew are determined to get gratification as soon as possible no matter how much resistance the other side puts up. Does that at all sound familiar to you, Dr. Ford?

Meanwhile, we’d advise you to read this from Drew Magary in GQ from the summer. For those of us bitching about Trump, the painful truth is that he’s only the symptom. The people are the problem. We’re all living in Invasion Of The Body Snatchers.

3. Pray For Scottsdale

By sundown on October 2nd the Phoenix area had already witnessed its second-wettest October on record, thanks to nearly three inches of rain pelting the desert in the month’s first two days. Remnants of Hurricane Rosa, which struck the northern coast of Mexico on the Pacific side, the storm left—and we’re not kidding—a golf course or two between Hayden and Scottsdale Roads under water.

Locals will whine that Rosa is just another unwelcome, undocumented Mexican visitor.

Locals know this as the Green Belt, a narrow park that includes a golf course and bike trail that was built, knowingly, in a flood plain. So when Arizona gets its 100-year floods, which occur every decade or so, you get pictures like the one above.

4. Operation Eichmann

Banner (left) and Klemperer in Operation Eichmann (1961)

So maybe you’ve seen or read about the Oscar Isaac film Operation Finale, which was just released and traces the true story of Nazi war criminal and fugitive Adolph Eichmann. It stars Ben Kingsley as the bad buy.

Two nights ago we flipped over to TCM, as we always do, and they were airing a film from 1961 titled Operation Eichmann. It’s the same character, the same story. So what, you ask? We’ll tell you so what…

The man in the title role was Werner Klemperer, whom you may recognize better as Colonel Klink from Hogan’s Heroes. But what really got our attention was a dinner scene in which Eichmann/Klink is coldly discussing with one of his sergeants how he prefers gassing Jews because “it is so clean” a method of extermination. As ghoulish as that sounded, and remember this is only 16 years after the end of World War II, the actor playing the sergeant in that scene was John Banner, whom you know better as...Sergeant Schultz.

Banner and Klemperer playing Nazis for laughs

That’s right: only four years before Hogan’s Heroes’ 1965 TV premiere, Klink and Schultz were playing Nazis straight. And discussing the Holocaust as two people would ridding themselves of termite infestation (Banner’s Rudolph Hoss explained that he liked gassing because it did not negatively impact the morale of his soldiers).

5. Divers Drown

Remember all the attention that cave-bound Thai soccer team received back in June? Fortunately, all 12 boys and their coach survived, though one diver did perish attempting to save them.
Well, this weekend in Malaysia, a half dozen rescue divers drowned in a vain attempt to save a teen who had fallen into a disused mining pool while fishing. The divers apparently were caught in a whirlpool and their equipment was flung off them. The teen is still missing. It’s odd how feel-bad stories don’t receive as much attention as feel-good stories when it comes to rescues.

Music 101

Have You Seen Her?


The Chi-Lites never garnered the acclaim that similar early ’70s soul acts such as The Temptations and The O’Jays did. This 1971 release from the Chicago act was their first hit, reaching No. 3 on the Billboard charts. And here they are lip-synching it on Soul Train.

Remote Patrol

NLDS Doubleheader


5 p.m. FS1


8 p.m. MLBN

I like to pronounce it like “tornado” even if that’s wrong

That’s correct: They’re going to play ball at Miller Park during happy hour and later in Los Angeles during rush hour. Advantage, Brewer fans. If you don’t know much about Christian Yelich or Nolan Arenado, here’s your chance to watch two men who should or will soon be MVPs. The latter is a five-time Gold Glove winner at third base.


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