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[Posted Sunday p.m.]
St. Louis Cardinals Quiz: [Once I start looking something up, due to time constraints, I have to roll with it.] The great Dizzy Dean won 30, 28, and 24 games, 1934-36. Name the only four Cardinals pitchers to win at least 22 since then. Answer below. [This isn’t totally fair, but if you are a Cardinals fan, you’re supposed to know stuff like this.]
USA 2...Netherlands 0
Congratulations to the U.S. women, taking the World Cup title for a second straight time, fourth overall, by beating a game Netherlands on the heels of goals by Megan Rapinoe and Rose Lavelle; Rapinoe’s on a penalty kick at 61’, Lavelle’s at 69’ a particularly sweet effort.
But what an effort over the tournament by the Netherlands, playing in just its second World Cup.
And what an effort by the tens of thousands of Americans who traveled to France for the tournament! I hope they were all great ambassadors for our country. It’s so important to be so. #NoUglyAmericans.
--Well, I said weeks ago that it was a lock for Kawhi Leonard to go home and join the Los Angeles Clippers, though then the Lakers entered the conversation and there was a shred of doubt cast. But what was the shock of it all, the announcement on Friday night that Leonard was leaving Toronto after one season, and a championship, to sign a four-year, $142 million contract with the Clippers, was who he convinced to come along with him...Paul George. Stunning.
George requested a trade out of Oklahoma City and the Clippers sent a huge haul of draft picks, plus Shai Gilgeous-Alexander and Danilo Gallinari, to the Thunder.
So guess who is now the early favorite for the 2019-2020 season? Time’s up.
Bill Plaschke / Los Angeles Times
“As the balloons continue to fall upon the most joyous party in Clippers history, it is time to acknowledge the purple-faced elephant in the room. How on earth did the Lakers blow this?
“The Clippers pulled off an incredible Friday night heist in reaching an agreement to sign Kawhi Leonard and trading for Paul George, they’ve earned every bit of the awe that’s being showered upon them, but above the buzzing local basketball landscape looms an aching question.
“How could the Lakers have let this happen?
“How could the NBA’s most glamorous franchise fail to acquire either of the two Southern California kids when, in the previous two years, both Leonard and George had professed their Lakers love and wanted to come home? And how could they have lost them both to the Clippers?
“Two years ago, George wanted to be traded to the Lakers. They couldn’t pull it off. Last year they wanted to sign him as a free agent. He wouldn’t even give them a meeting.
“Last year, Leonard wanted to be traded to the Lakers. They couldn’t pull it off. Then last week the stage was set for him to join them as a free agent, and at least this time they got a meeting, but they couldn’t close the deal.
“The Clippers moved smartly and strongly to grab both, even at great cost, because that’s what focused and unified organizations do. Their triumph Friday night stands in stark contrast to the Lakers’ disjointed failure, obvious with George last year and repeated with Leonard now.
“The Lakers still will be a great team with LeBron James and Anthony Davis, but they missed an opportunity to become a potential championship dynasty. They again stumbled when everything was set up for them to succeed....
“Leonard clearly was intent on coming back to his Southern California roots. The Lakers checked that box.
“Leonard evidently wanted to play with another superstar. The Lakers checked that box with two superstars.
“Leonard plainly wanted a chance at winning at least his third NBA championship. The Lakers checked that box with a team that, if it included Leonard, would have waltzed to the championship and perhaps been one of the greatest teams ever.
“Leonard already told people he wanted to be a Laker; this could have been the easiest big-name signing in franchise history. Yet it wasn’t, they didn’t, they couldn’t, and what occurred next is best described with a new verb that illustrates what happens when style submits to substance.
“The Lakers got Clippered.
“The Lakers lost to an owner who was more determined, a front office that was better prepared, a coaching staff with more credibility, and a culture that was all basketball. While the Lakers were fussing and feuding and finger-pointing during recent months, they were losing ground to a Clippers franchise that spent the last couple of years slowly and quietly building solid credibility while creating a championship mission that led the team to that Friday night moment when it shocked the world.
“Yet, really, it shouldn’t have surprised anybody.
“The difference in the current state of the franchises’ leadership was epitomized by where and how Leonard was wooed.
“While he met with Clippers officials at Coach Doc Rivers’ house in Malibu, he met the Lakers at the Four Seasons in Westlake Village.
“In one setting, the Clippers displayed a showcase front office with deep roots. In the other setting, the Lakers presented Jeanie Buss and Rob Pelinka in a hotel.
“The Lakers’ leadership already was being questioned by Leonard’s camp, according to the Times’ Broderick Turner. These meetings apparently only cemented the perception that the Clippers were a more stable place to play basketball.”
Imagine, the Clippers closed the deal with Rivers, while the Lakers, who had to settle for new coach Frank Vogel after a botched search, didn’t even bring him to the meeting.
So the Lakers, having been Clippered, still had to move quickly on other fronts and they agreed to terms with the Raptors’ Danny Green on a two-year deal, as well as with DeMarcus Cousins and Rajon Rondo, along with point guards Quinn Cook and Alex Caruso, and center JaVale McGee.
We’ll see what Cousins has left after his Achilles tendon tear; it will be a good look at what awaits Kevin Durant. As for Rondo, at 33 he still has game and LeBron loves his “basketball intelligence.” And Danny Green is simply a winner.
--Meanwhile, back in Oklahoma City, superstar Russell Westbrook is enraged with Thunder general manager Sam Presti. In the aftermath of the Paul George trade and OKC’s haul of five future first-round picks and All-Rookie point guard Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, the handwriting is on the wall. It’s rebuilding time, plus the remaining four years and $170 million on Westbrook’s contract no longer makes sense for a team that isn’t a contender.
Westbrook faced a similar situation in 2016, after teammate Kevin Durant bolted for the Warriors, but Westbrook elected to renegotiate his contract and sign an extension with the Thunder, after which OKC traded for Paul George.
But now what? The Thunder are operating well over the salary cap and projected to pay a big luxury tax, so they are in cost-cutting mode.
--So much for Zion Williamson’s summer league stint. Just nine minutes, the New Orleans Pelicans shelving him for the rest of league play with a bruised knee suffered in his debut Friday. The team said, ‘no issues’ and that this was being done “in an abundance of caution.”
But in those nine minutes, Zion delivered four power dunks, including a fierce strip-steal of the Knicks’ Kenny Knox, followed by a slam, that was all you needed to see if you still need convincing as to the kind of immediate impact Zion can have.
It’s been all about 15-year-old American Coco Gauff, who startlingly won her third round match on Friday against Slovenia’s Polona Hercog, after losing the first set, and then being down 5-2 in the second.
I was working on that other column I do on Fridays and it was at that point I saw the score online and thought, ‘Well, that was fun while it lasted.’
Only Gauff roared back, 3-6, 7-6 (7), 7-5.
Next up, Monday...former No. 1 in the world Simona Halep (7-seed in this one).
On the men’s side, all you need to know is the Big Three, Novak Djokovic, Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer, have all advanced to the round of 16.
--After being swept in a four-game series at Citi Field, on May 23 the Washington Nationals were 19-31 and out of it, the disappointment of the year in baseball for sure.
But after Saturday and a 6-0 win over the Royals behind seven shutout innings from Max Scherzer, the Nats were 46-42 and in one of the wildcard slots...a 27-11 run.
Speaking of the Washington ace....
Sam Fortier / Washington Post
“Max Scherzer was always going to pitch. He didn’t skip a start after he broke his nose two weeks ago, and he wasn’t going to miss a start after two days away on paternity leave. He had been with his wife, Erica, for the planned birth of their second child, Kacey, on the Fourth of July.
“ ‘[Erica] wanted me to pitch today,’ Scherzer said. ‘She wants me pitching. We got the in-laws in. We got help. She’s a baseball wife. She’s a pitcher. She wants me out there competing.’
“The new arrival meant altering Scherzer’s prized routine a bit, but it was difficult to tell anything was different.”
Scherzer has won his last seven starts to move to 9-5, lowering his ERA to 2.30. In his past nine starts, Scherzer has a 0.84 ERA and 94 strikeouts against nine walks across 64 innings.
And the Nats made it 28 of 39 today, 5-2 over the Royals (30-61...ugh...).
--The Yankees lost to Tampa Bay on the road Saturday 4-3, as the Rays’, and former Met, Travis d’Arnaux hit a walk-off home run in the bottom of the ninth off reliever Chad Green; this after Aaron Hicks had tied it in the top of the inning with a dramatic two-out, two-strike home run of his own.
But this was just the third loss in the last 19 games for the surging Yankees.
Make that fourth in 20, Tampa Bay defeating New York again this afternoon, 2-1, as Charlie Morton improved to 10-2, 2.32 ERA, though he needed 3 1/3 innings of spotless relief from the bullpen to secure the victory.
A huge last two games for the Rays to remain in contact.
New York 57-31
Tampa Bay 52-39...6.5
I also have to note the amazing steak that ended this weekend. Yankees radio broadcaster John Sterling, who appeared in 5,060 straight Yankees games since 1989, took the weekend off due to health issues. But as the newly-81-year-old put it, “I’m getting my act together for the second half.”
Say what you will about Sterling, and a lot of us who are not always enamored with his style have indeed had some less than complimentary things to say about him, but it is truly amazing to think of this streak. He’s always been there for Yankees fans.
“I’m just run down,” Sterling said this week, in eschewing the road trip to Tampa (and thus gaining the rest from the All-Star break as well). “There is nothing wrong with me.”
The stupid excursion to London for the Red Sox series there clearly didn’t help someone at that age.
--Then you have the Mets. Or the Mess. Friday night at home against the Phillies, Jacob deGrom threw seven innings of 2-run ball but left with the score tied 2-2. Seth Lugo then threw a scoreless eighth.
Then came closer Edwin Diaz. He promptly gave up 4 earned in a 1/3 of an inning, Jeurys Familia gave up another, and the Mets lost 7-2. It all happened so quickly...and it was all too familiar.
Diaz, a supposed superstar in his role, fell to 1-6, 5.67 ERA, four blown saves, but this last one is deceiving. He has pitched far worse than that.
And then there’s Familia, who is supposed to be the eighth inning guy. He has a 7.76 ERA.
Mets fans have been throwing up all over themselves watching this horror show.
And of course much of the blame, if not all, falls on Mets General Manager Brodie Van Wagenen, who engineered the trades for Diaz (and Robbie Cano), and the bringing back to New York of Familia.
So after the ugly loss Friday, Brodie confronted the Mets coaching staff and, as first reported by the New York Post, threw a chair as he berated them, while telling Manager Mickey Callaway to go do his “f---ing press conference.”
I was watching for the presser, to see what Mickey would say after such a horrid loss, and Callaway didn’t let on as to what had just transpired.
Van Wagenen was reportedly upset that deGrom’s outing was once again wasted. The GM told the Post after, without confirming or denying the incident, “We as a staff often meet with coaches and players throughout the course of the season.”
But back to wasting deGrom’s efforts, while he is not having a Cy Young-caliber season, he nonetheless has pitched very well, with a 3.27 ERA.
Yet he’s not only just 4-7, the Mets are 5-13 in his 18 starts, and 16-31 in his last 47!
And the Mets lost again today, 8-3, to head into the break 40-50, Philadelphia very much in the playoff picture at 47-43.
At least Pete Alonso hit home run No. 30, a rare feat before an All-Star Game, and with the two RBIs, he now has 68, a National League rookie record.
Former Met Jay Bruce hit two home runs for the Phils...as it should be.
--Philadelphia outfielder Odubel Herrera will be suspended the remainder of the season over a domestic-violence case.
The charges against him were dropped on Wednesday when his girlfriend declined to press charges, but Major League Baseball said it was still investigating the case and on Friday the commissioner’s office announced Herrera had accepted a suspension for the remainder of the season and the postseason.
MLB said he won’t appeal the ruling and would enter an evaluation and treatment program.
Herrera has been on leave since soon after he was arrested on suspicion of simple assault in Atlantic City in late May. Police at the time said the victim “had visible signs of injury to her arms and neck that was sustained after being assaulted by her boyfriend, David Odubel Herrera, during a dispute” at the Golden Nugget casino.
Herrera, an All-Star in 2016, was having a miserable season, batting just .222 in 39 games.
So Scott Kingery is now getting all the playing time in center field and responding well, with a .889 OPS thus far.
--What a spectacular ending to this week’s PGA Tour event, the inaugural 3M Open in Blaine, Minnesota. Matthew Wolff, 20, was making his fourth start on tour, after bagging the NCAA individual championship for Oklahoma State last month, while Collin Morikawa, 22, was in just his sixth professional event, the two having played against each other in high school in California.
Wolff and Morikawa were tied for the lead heading into today’s final round, Wolff emerging victorious as he eagled No. 18 (Morikawa with a birdie to finish T-2 with Bryson DeChambeau, who also eagled 18 just ahead of them...Bryson thinking he had at worst a playoff in his future).
Just amazing stuff. At one point we had six tied for the lead late in the day.
So Wolff becomes the first player to win an event before the age of 21 since Jordan Spieth did so in 2013.
--Congratulations to 60-year-old Tom Lehman for not only making the cut at the 3M Open (on a course he helped renovate), but in finishing T-58, he beat Brooks Koepka and Jason Day.
--We note Scott Piercy’s very effective use of the “F-word” at No. 17 today. Like three times. He finished T-15 on the week after leading with an opening round 62.
--I’m sorry...I really don’t like Bryson DeChambeau...haven’t since day one.
--I hope some of you got a chance to catch the Irish Open this weekend at Lahinch Golf Club, won by Jon Rahm, -16 (67-71-64-62...par 70). Yes, only 2-under the first 36...14-under the final 36. As Ronald Reagan would have said, quaffing a pint with the locals, ‘Not bad, not bad at all.’
As one who has played about 50 rounds at Lahinch, just understand that those were four days of incredibly benign conditions. I’d say of 50 rounds, at least 35 were played with a stiff wind and that makes all the difference in the world at this terrific place. [Many of the rounds were also played in outright rain, which isn’t so terrific.]
Kudos to Golf Channel for its superb coverage, and I’m sure Lahinch, the golf tour agencies, and the Irish Tourism Board could have not been more pleased with the four-day running commercial.
Us members, though, are thinking, man, it’s not going to be as easy getting desired tee times.
And as we exchanged notes this week, we commented how the pros didn’t seem to be finding the places we have been....like a pond between the 15th and 16th greens, where you really do get greeted by leprechauns. Plus, while they smartly took the course’s goats away for the week, given the large crowds, let’s just say you don’t want to meet them when searching for your ball in the wilds after an errant drive. They aren’t the kind of goats you find at a petting zoo. Once they grow wings, they become Nazgul.
Rahm, by the way, won his second Irish Open in three years and he, too, couldn’t have been heaping thicker praise on the place.
--The R&A has denied John Daly’s request that he be allowed to use a golf cart at The Open Championship at Royal Portrush. Daly suffers from osteoarthritis in his right knee which makes it hard for him to walk for prolonged periods.
But Portrush isn’t exactly conducive to a cart, and the R&A said: “We appreciate the difficulty John is facing and have full sympathy for him as this is clearly a serious, long-term condition....
“(But) we believe that walking the course is an integral part of the Championship and is central to the tradition of links golf which is synonymous with The Open. We must also ensure that, as far as possible, the challenge is the same for all players in the field.”
--In a stunner in NASCAR this afternoon, Justin Haley, in just his third start, a 500-1 longshot, won the weather-delayed, weather-shortened Coke Zero Sugar 400 at Daytona.
I was following this closely because at lap 118 of 160, my DraftKings lineup was on track for a big win, but then the next lap, two of my guys, Austin Dillon and Clint Bowyer, running 1-2, got tangled up and before you knew it, 17 cars were involved.
For you DK players, you understand how depressing it is to see the icon next to your drivers of the car turned over...and I had four of my six in this ‘Big One.’ As Charlie Brown would have said, “Drat!”
Haley, like Matthew Wolff, is just 20!
Only Trevor Bayne, Jamie McMurray and Kevin Harvick in the modern era have picked up their first NASCAR Cup win in their first three starts.
--Joey Chestnut did it again, capturing his 12th Mustard Belt at the Nathan’s Famous Hot Dog Eating Contest (that’s one more than Bill Russell’s 11 NBA Championships), scarfing down 71 hot dogs and buns, just four shy of breaking the record 74 he devoured last year.
Clearly, though, Chestnut was upset with himself after for not setting a new mark, though anyone watching, such as myself and my brother, saw that he seemed as close to a “reversal of fortune” those last few minutes as at any time in his spectacular run of majestic consumption.
As Rich Shea of Major League Eating said, it was a “dominant performance,” Chestnut continuing “to elevate his game.”
While it wasn’t a record, Joey finished a full 21 dogs ahead of his next competitor, Darron Breeden, who ingested 50.
Miki Sudo became a six-time women’s champ in swallowing 31 wieners whole.
Meanwhile, longtime sportswriter Peter King described the sport of competitive eating as “disgusting.”
“A shame that as at least a fifth of children in America go to bed hungry nightly they’re highlighting gluttony, treating someone who overeats excessively as a ‘competitive athlete.’ Truly disgusting,” King tweeted July 3.
Now I like Peter King, a tremendous journalist and the go-to guy for NFL insight these days.
But, c’mon, Mr. King. Don’t be a jerk. And lighten up.
Chestnut told TMZ Sports, prior to his contest on the Fourth, “I think Peter King...he’s kind of narrow-minded. He’s picking low-hanging fruit. It’s easy to criticize something. He could easily criticize NASCAR for greenhouse gas emissions.”
That’s a novel comeback, Joey. Good on you. And Chestnut pointed out that most competitive eating contests involve donations to food banks.
And to Mr. King, you aren’t exactly svelte. Maybe eat a salad now and then.
--We note the passing of former NFL quarterback, and all-time University of Kentucky great, Jared Lorenzen, who was just 38 when he passed away on Wednesday. His family said he had been hospitalized the previous Friday with heart and kidney issues.
Lorenzen played just two seasons with the Giants, 2006-07, throwing a mere eight passes, backing up Eli Manning, but he became a beloved figure, due in no small part to his non-athletic build.
Eli Manning particularly remembers Lorenzen’s role in Eli’s famous pass, and David Tyree helmet catch, in Super Bowl XLII, because Manning had to wrestle free of the Patriots’ pass rush, which is where Lorenzen came in.
“All the work I had with Jared Lorenzen, I think that was a big help in helping me get out of that pocket,” Manning said last week, as during practice, on one of the drills Manning had to move around in the pocket as Lorenzen tried to strip the ball out. Manning said Jared took it to the next level “and it was like he was the D-tackle trying to get a sack.”
In a statement, Manning said, “Jared was a great teammate and friend...I will always remember his competitive spirit and his good nature. Jared has left us all way too soon.”
Many of us remember Lorenzen for his exploits at Kentucky, where he played from 2000 to 2003, throwing for 10,354 yards with 78 touchdowns and 41 interceptions. He remains Kentucky’s all-time leader in passing yards, attempts and completions, and the 78 TD passes ranks second in program history.
In no small part because of his rather hefty build, he went undrafted out of college but signed with the Giants as a free agent. Our sympathies to both his and the University of Kentucky family. Guys like him leave tremendous memories.
--What an awful story involving Miami Dolphins and defensive tackle Kendrick Norton, Norton needing to have his arm amputated after a car crash in the Miami area early Thursday morning.
Norton, 22, was driving his Ford F250 truck when he crashed into a concrete barrier and the truck overturned and came to rest on its roof. He had suffered severe injuries to his left arm. While his full medical status hasn’t been released, it is not considered life-threatening.
Norton was selected in the seventh round of the 2018 NFL draft by the Carolina Panthers, out of the University of Miami, and the Dolphins signed him off the practice squad in December. He was expected to compete for a spot on the 53-man roster this season.
--Last chat I noted the case of runner Frank Meza, 70, who was disqualified for cheating in the Los Angeles marathon last spring. Officials said there was no way he had broken the age record and that he had cut off portions of the course. He was scalded on social media and by the general distance-running community. It also hadn’t been the first time Meza was accused of cutting corners.
But now he’s dead. In a stunning development, Meza was found in shallow water in the Los Angeles River on Thursday. He had gone out for a run and it is believed he took his life.
I don’t feel bad for relaying the story, as the evidence seemed overwhelming he had cheated. That’s not right.
On the other hand, you have to feel so badly for the guy’s family, including his widow, who decried the public shaming in a tearful interview with the NBC affiliate in Los Angeles.
His family is convinced he achieved his age records honestly.
Just an immensely tragic tale.
--We note the passing of comic actor Arte Johnson, who won an Emmy for playing a diverse troupe of characters in the groundbreaking comedy show “Rowan & Martin’s Laugh-In.” Johnson was 90.
Johnson had been largely unknown when he joined a cast that included Goldie Hawn, Lily Tomlin, Ruth Buzzi and Alan Sues, “Laugh-In” a truly trailblazing show that inspired later successes like “Saturday Night Live.”
Johnson became a one-man ensemble, his characters including Tyrone Horneigh, a lascivious old man who accosted a woman played by Ruth Buzzi; Rosmenko, a Russian with tortured syntax; and Rabbi Shankar, a blissed-out guru.
But his most popular character was that of Wolfgang Busch, a helmeted German soldier, who would peer through a bush at the end of a sketch before slowly uttering “Very interesting,” often followed by a qualifier like “but stupid” or “not very funny.”
If you were too young to have seen “Laugh-In,” you just can’t imagine how popular it was and how it elevated the likes of Goldie Hawn and Lily Tomlin to superstardom.
But Johnson parted ways with the show before its last season and he conceded later, “It wasn’t the brightest move of my life. If I had to do it over again I wouldn’t have left.”
--From the BBC: “Four tigers have mauled their trainer to death during a rehearsal at a circus in southern Italy.
“One tiger set upon Ettore Weber, 61, on Thursday evening in Triggiano, before the other three joined in.
“They then played with his body in their cage until paramedics and circus staff intervened, local media report. He later died from his injuries.
“Mr. Weber...is said to be one of Italy’s best known circus trainers.”
A show was due to be performed an hour later. The tigers were moved to a safari park, which was always their intent in the first place.
--An 800-pound white shark named “Miss May,” equipped with a tracker by research group OCEARCH, pinged a number of times off the New Jersey coast last week, and some of us were hoping for Fireworks in the Water, if you catch my drift, but the 10-footer behaved herself, though now Long Island and Cape Cod beach-goers need to be on the lookout.
--Friday was Jerry Seinfeld night at Citi Field, Seinfeld a long-time great Mets fan. He threw out the first ball, a perfect strike, and then spent some time in the broadcast booth with Mets announcers Gary Cohen, Ron Darling and Keith Hernandez.
So Gary at one point asked Seinfeld who he liked as an up-and-comer in the comedy field and Jerry mentioned Mark Normand. [Jerry also said he personally likes the Gotham Club in New York, West 23rd Street, if you need an idea for something different.]
Anyway, I’m not up on new comics these days and just watched a Normand YouTube video from an appearance on New Day / Cleveland, and the guy is funny.
--I can’t believe Ringo Starr turned 79 today. Happy Birthday, Ringo!!!
Top 3 songs for the week 7/10/65: #1 “(I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction” (The Rolling Stones) #2 “I Can’t Help Myself” (Four Tops) #3 “Mr. Tambourine Man” (The Byrds)...and...#4 “Wonderful World” (Herman’s Hermits) #5 “Wooly Bully” (Sam the Sham and the Pharoahs) #6 “Yes, I’m Ready” (Barbara Mason) #7 “Seventh Son” (Johnny Rivers) #8 “Cara, Mia” (Jay & The Americans) #9 “You Turn Me On” (Ian Whitcomb) #10 “What The World Needs Now Is Love” (Jackie DeShannon...what an outstanding week...though #9 is iffy, I grant you....)
St. Louis Cardinals Quiz Answer: Winners of 22 games or more since Dizzy Dean (1934-36). Bob Gibson, 23 (1970) and 22 (1968); Mort Cooper, 22 in 1942 and 1944; Curt Davis, 22 (1939); Matt Morris, 22 (2001).
Hall of Famer Dean was effectively washed up at 27 due to arm issues, going 150-83 for his career in a short period of time.
Mort Cooper, 128-75 lifetime, was actually N.L. MVP in 1942, which I’m embarrassed to say I didn’t know (but then I’m not a Cardinals fan and thus can’t be fined).
Curt Davis was 158-131 lifetime, 1934-46, and can’t say I ever heard of him, which will upset the Davis clan to no end.
And Matt Morris, who we do know, was 121-92, 1997-2008.
But in exploring this question, we have the case of Jesse Haines, 210-158 for his career, 1920-37, who I forgot is a Hall of Famer! As in, WTF? Not to pick a fight with the Haines gang, which hails out of Ohio, but Jesse never received more than 8% of the vote for the Hall...8%!...yet the Veterans Committee, more corrupt than builder/developers in Mumbai (my beer man, from there, and I were just discussing this regarding flooding in the place, which I visited back in 1985), put him in in 1970. A travesty.
But we need to move on.
1969 Mets, cont’d....
The Mets were in Pittsburgh for three, including a Fourth of July doubleheader.
July 4: Mets win 11-6, Agee, Jones and Al Weis with three hits apiece, Agee three ribbies. Tom Seaver went seven, 3 runs, for his seventh straight, now 13-3. Bob Veale fell to 4-10 for the Buccos.
July 4: In the nightcap, the Mets won 9-2, Don Cardwell with 7 innings of 2-run ball for the win, Al Weis with another 3 RBIs, giving him five for the doubleheader.
July 6: Mets complete the sweep, 8-7, with Donn Clendenon clubbing a double and homer, 4 RBIs, while the Mets survived a shaky start from Jim McAndrew and Nolan Ryan, who combined to allow 6 runs, 5 walks, in just 1 1/3.
But the Mets, down 6-1 after two, kept chipping away and received 7 2/3 of one-run ball the rest of the way from Danny Frisella, Ron Taylor and Cal Koone. Pittsburgh’s Dock Ellis fell to 4-9.
So the Mets are now 45-34, 5 ½ back of the Cubs, with a huge three-game set with Chicago coming up next at Shea Stadium. The place should be rocking. I have a feeling something special is about to happen, though there may also be some tears from your then 11-year-old editor.
Next Bar Chat, Thursday. The tale of the Arctic Fox.