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Astros - Nationals!
[Posted Sunday p.m., prior to Eagles-Cowboys...and 4:00 NFL games]
World Series Quiz: Name the last two pitchers to have three complete games in a single World Series. Answer below.
The Yankees lost Games 3 and 4 to the Astros at Yankee Stadium, 4-1 and 8-3, to fall behind 3-1 in the series, do-or-die on Friday night.
It was pretty simple why the Yankees had sucked the prior two, atrocious hitting in the clutch (and then poor fielding in Game 4 as well).
So in Game 5, New York had to face Justin Verlander, while the Yanks went with James Paxton, who had exited after 2 1/3 in Game 2’s 3-2 extra-inning loss.
Paxton gave up a run in the top of the first, but then against Verlander, DJ LeMahieu, a goat the night before with two errors, led off the bottom of the inning with a home run, and a few batters later, Aaron Hicks, 2-for-23 with 10 strikeouts in his career against Verlander, crushed a three-run shot off the right-field foul pole making it 4-1, and that’s where we finished...the Yanks sending the series back to Houston for a Game 6. Paxton went six, striking out nine, while Verlander pitched a gutty seven innings. It was the first time both teams in the postseason had scored in the first inning, but not the rest of the way.
So with the quick turnaround, a late-night flight Friday back to Houston, both teams went with their bullpens Saturday night; the Yanks starting Chad Green, the Astros’ Brad Peacock.
Houston’s Yuli Gurriel then spoiled Yankee manager Aaron Boone’s plans, smashing a three-run homer off Green in the bottom of the first.
It was then 4-2 Houston going to the ninth, the Yanks facing elimination.
Mike Vaccaro / New York Post
“And in an eyeblink, it was gone, all of it: the hard-to-believe comeback, half an inch from the brink of extinction; the dream season stuffed with 108 victories [Ed. including the playoffs] of all make and model, all variance and variety; a chance to win a 28th World Series. All of it, gone in a flash, gone in a blur, gone in a spasm of raw, abject heartache.
“In an eyeblink, Jose Altuve joined the ranks of Yankees’ October serial killers, forming an unholy alliance alongside Luis Gonzalez and Edgar Martinez and Bill Mazeroski, a quartet of saboteurs who’ve eliminated the Yankees with one well-timed – or, depending on your point of view, ill-timed – swing of a bat.
“ ‘So many different emotions,’ Yankees manager Aaron Boone said following this 6-4 loss that delivered the pennant to Houston for the second time in three years. ‘It’s the ultimate pain you can feel in sports, knowing all that so many put into it, knowing how good of a club we have. For it to end that way, it’s hard...our guys are hurting.’....
“In the space of 20 forever baseball minutes, there were 43,357 folks inside Minute Maid Park – and a few million more back home, in New York – treated to all of the extremes that this remarkable sport allows.
“The Astros were two outs away from closing the Yankees out before LeMahieu tried to join a select corps of pinstriped October idols, a group that includes his boss, Boone, and Chris Chambliss, and Bucky Dent, and Scott Brosius. The mood in Houston was funeral. We can only imagine half a continent away, there were battalions of New Yorkers ready to dance on stars as soon as the inevitable happened....
“Except after getting two quick outs in the bottom of the ninth, Aroldis Chapman walked George Springer, then fell behind Altuve, 2-and-0. Altuve let one slider pass for a strike. He wasn’t going to do that again, on the next pitch, an 84 mph spinner that was gone from the moment it left his bat....
“In an eyeblink, this hard-to-fathom season ended in the worst possible way.”
All the injuries, all the no-name players, like Tauchman and Ford, Gio Urshela, filling the void in spectacular fashion.
As Mike Vaccaro wrote, “It was perfect. Until it wasn’t.”
Aaron Judge said after, “No matter how many games we won in the regular season, this is a failure. I think about the season as a whole, guys getting injured, guys getting back, a lot of ups and downs, I think about missed opportunities and some guys I might not play with again....”
Yes, there were lots of missed opportunities. The Yankees were a major-league best in hitting with runners in scoring position during the regular season, .294. Against the Twins in the ALDS, New York had 11 hits in 34 such at-bats.
But in the ALCS, the Yanks were just 6-for-35, .171.
There will be time to talk about the offseason, but Yankees fans are wondering what management wants to do with the likes of Aroldis Chapman and Didi Gregorius, for starters.
But now we move on to the World Series, a delicious matchup between Houston and Washington...Gerrit Cole and Justin Verlander vs. Max Scherzer and Stephen Strasburg. Jose Altuve vs. Anthony Rendon. It’s not the glamor matchup in terms of media markets MLB wanted, that would have been Yankees-Dodgers, but this should be terrific.
In Game One it’s Cole vs. Scherzer, Verlander vs. Strasburg in Game Two.
With the Nationals having such a long break, for the record, Scherzer is 14-10, 2.98 ERA, in 40 starts on six or more days’ rest, while Strasburg is 19-13, 3.10, in 42 long-rest starts. [Patrick Corbin is 13-7, 3.43; Anibal Sanchez is 19-9, 3.37.]
--Since my last chat, the Angels, as expected, hired Joe Maddon to be their new manager. As the L.A. Times’ Bill Plaschke put it, “a move that should calm a few nerves, restore a little hope, and at least temporarily slow the ugliest of narratives.
“A team mired in a drug scandal has brought home a former longtime employee who helped lead them to their only World Series championship.
“A team that has been to the playoffs only once in the last 10 years has brought in the guy who managed the Chicago Cubs out of that infamous 108-year title drought.
“A team in turmoil has hired the epitome of calm.
“Maddon, 65, is cool, eccentric and smart. Maddon embraces cutting-edge analytics, preaches hardball philosophy, and pushes fun.”
Maddon wins. He “took the previously hapless Tampa Bay Rans to the World Series in 2008. He led the historically hapless Cubs to a World Series championship in 2016. His .540 career winning percentage ranks him 20th all-time among managers who have worked at least 2,000 games.”
He can wear thin with players after a few years, but Maddon is the right choice for today.
[Comments written prior to release of new AP Poll]
Leave it up to college football not to disappoint even when you think it’s a crappy week in terms of the schedule.
No way No. 6 Wisconsin, 31-point favorites heading into their road game at Illinois, was going to get caught looking ahead to next week’s matchup against Ohio State. No way. Until they were caught doing just that as the Illini, under coach Lovie Smith, shocked the Badgers (6-1) with a 39-yard field goal as time expired to take it 24-23, Illinois now 3-4.
Wisconsin’s defense had given up just five points a game coming into this one, but the offense turned the ball over three times and the Illini capitalized.
Badger running back Jonathan Taylor rushed for 132 yards and a touchdown, becoming the fastest to reach 5,000 yards before the end of their junior season, but no one in Madison gives a damn about that today, especially as he had a key fourth quarter fumble. Bye-bye CFP hopes.
But there was another potential big development as in No. 1 Alabama’s 35-13 win over Tennessee (2-5), the Vols beating the spread, Tua Tagovailoa exited with an ankle injury in the first half after going 11/12, 155, 0-1. We then learned today he had undergone surgery on a high-ankle sprain, but he’d only miss one game.
The good news for ‘Bama (7-0) is they just have Arkansas next week, then a bye, before facing LSU, so three weeks for Tua to recover and coach Nick Saban is acting like that won’t be a problem.
Speaking of No. 2 LSU, Mississippi State (3-4) looked solid early, but the Tigers (7-0) pulled away, 36-13, as quarterback Joe Burrow kept his name in the top 4 or 5 in the Heisman race with a 25/32, 327, 4-0 performance.
3 Clemson (7-0) defeated Louisville (4-3) on the road, 45-10, as the Tigers are rounding into postseason form. But while Trevor Lawrence threw for three touchdowns, he also had another two picks, 8 interceptions in all thus far. Consider last year his TD/INT ratio was 30-4. This season it’s 14-8. Let’s face it, he got a little full of himself in the offseason with all the glowing press and he’s had trouble at times focusing. I mean his two INTs yesterday were due to awful decision-making.
Meanwhile, Clemson running back Travis Etienne had his second straight superb performance, 14 carries for 192 and a score.
Friday night, 4 Ohio State destroyed Northwestern (1-5) 52-3 as Justin Fields kept himself in the Heisman conversation, 18/23, 194, 4-0, while J.K. Dobbins continued his sterling play, 18 carries for 121 and a TD as the Buckeyes moved to 7-0.
But the frontrunner for the Heisman has to be No. 5 Oklahoma’s Jalen Hurts. All he did in a 52-14 win over West Virginia (3-4) is go 16/17, 316, 3-0 through the air, while rushing for 75 yards and another two TDs. The Sooners (7-0) outgained the Mountaineers 560-242.
Hurts has 20 touchdown passes, just three interceptions, while rushing for 705 yards and another 10 scores.
Separately, nice to see no one was hurt when the Sooner Schooner made like it was in a film shoot for “How the West Was Won” as it overturned when it went on the field. It wasn’t easy for those first settlers, sports fans.
7 Penn State stayed undefeated at 7-0, defeating 16 Michigan (5-2) 28-21 in a big test. Sean Clifford threw three touchdown passes for the Nittany Lions, as Michigan coach Jim Harbaugh still doesn’t have a signature win in five seasons at the helm; 1-10 against top-10 opponents. What’s even more frustrating for Wolverines fans is that their team played well, outgaining the Nittany Lions 417-283.
8 Notre Dame was idle.
9 Florida is 7-1 after beating South Carolina (3-4) 38-27, Gator QB Kyle Trask with four TDs through the air.
10 Georgia (6-1) shutout Kentucky (3-4) 21-0 in a game played in heavy rain (the remains of Tropical Storm Nestor), with the passing games for both teams suffering. Jake Fromm was 9 of 12 for just 35 yards, while the Wildcats’ Lynn Bowden Jr. was 2 of 15 for 17. Eegads. D’Andre Swift picked up the slack for the Bulldogs with 179 yards on the ground and two touchdowns.
In other big ones....
12 Oregon improved to 6-1 with a nice win on the road at 25 Washington (5-3) 35-31, as Justin Herbert threw for 280 yards and four touchdowns, rallying the Ducks back from a 28-14 deficit. I watched all of this one to see Herbert and he has NFL starting QB written all over him. He’ll be a good one. Washington’s Jacob Eason also has potential.
Oregon will be a highly entertaining New Year’s Six bowl entrant, the Duckwear in my sports drawer stirring in anticipation.
We had a huge upset Saturday night as 14 Boise State probably just threw away its Group of Five, New Year’s Six bid in losing at BYU (3-4) 28-25, the Broncos falling to 6-1. It was 28-10 entering the fourth quarter before Boise rallied back in vain.
So with this loss, suddenly, SMU and Appalachian State are very much in the New Year’s Six race, a great development for the sport.
Paul P.’s 19-ranked Mustangs are 7-0 after a very good 45-21 win over a tough Temple team (5-2). Shane Buechele passed for 457 yards and six touchdowns, SMU receiver Reggie Roberson Jr. with a spectacular afternoon...eight receptions for 250 yards and three scores.
24 Appalachian State is 6-0 after a 52-7 thrashing of UL-Monroe, the Mountaineers outgaining the Warhawks 572-213.
App State plays at South Carolina in three weeks in a massive game in terms of their Group of Five bid attempt.
Meanwhile, 18 Baylor is still undefeated, now 7-0 after a nice road win at Oklahoma State (4-3) 45-27, despite another terrific game from the nation’s top runner, the Cowboys’ Chuba Hubbard going 32-171-2.
And in yet another terrific story in college football this fall, 20 Minnesota remained undefeated, 7-0, with a 42-7 win at Rutgers (1-6). With Wisconsin’s loss, Minnesota is now atop the Big Ten West. Awesome job by coach P.J. Fleck.
As for the Scarlet Knights, after one-yard net passing last week, they had one yard passing in the first half Saturday...before finishing with 48!!! Poor true freshman quarterback Johnny Langan, the third QB used by Rutgers this season, has no touchdown passes and five picks thus far.
Boston College is 4-3 after a 45-24 win over North Carolina State (4-3) as the Eagles’ ground game was rather spectacular. AJ Dillon rushed for 223 yards and 3 touchdowns, while teammate David Bailey added 181 yards and two scores of his own.
As Ronald Reagan would have told Nancy while reading the Sunday sports pages, Nancy refilling his coffee, ‘Not bad, not bad at all.’
Lastly, I watched every minute of three games yesterday... Clemson-South Carolina, Oregon-Washington, and Wake Forest-Florida State. I had the Wake game on the computer while watching Yankees-Astros on the television, and for us Demon Deacon fans, what a frustrating affair. Wake had it in the red zone four times in the first half and emerged with just four field goals from Nick Sciba, while Florida State converted its two red zone opportunities into touchdowns, FSU up 14-12 at the half.
Wake’s play calling was atrocious, though backup quarterback Sam Hartman was in, playing for injured starter Jamie Newman.
But in the end, the next time Wake was in the red zone they went to running back Cade Carney taking the direct snap a few times and he ran it in for a touchdown, Sciba later adding his fifth field goal (he has an NCAA-leading 23 in a row) with 4:18 left in the game.
The Deacs pulled it out 22-20, as Seminole coach Willie Taggart grossly misused his remaining two timeouts, FSU kicker Ricky Aguayo missing a 50-yard field goal attempt that would have given them the lead with 2:13 left, Taggart inadvertently icing his own kicker with a TO...or so it seemed.
So FSU is 3-4, Wake Forest 6-1. 6-1! North Carolina State is next at home, but after another bye week, and as we all know by now, for some unknown reason coach Dave Clawson is 0-7 after bye weeks at Wake.
One more. The Deacs’ Sage Surratt is carving out a superb All-American season at wide receiver. Saturday he had his fourth game of the year with 150 yards or more, 7 catches for 170.
Yup, the dude will be playing on Sundays before long.
--And now the new AP Poll!...and we have a little surprise.
1. Alabama (24) 7-0
2. LSU (16) 7-0
3. Ohio State (13) 7-0...huh
4. Clemson (9) 7-0
5. Oklahoma 7-0
6. Penn State 7-0
7. Florida 7-1
8. Notre Dame 5-1
9. Auburn 6-1
10. Georgia 6-1
11. Oregon 6-1...quack quack
14. Baylor 7-0
16. SMU 7-0
17. Minnesota 7-0
18. Cincinnati 6-1...yes, they are also in Group of Five / New Year’s Six race
21. Appalachian State 6-0...again, highest-ever ranking
22. Boise State 6-1
25. Wake Forest 6-1...well whaddya know...
Yes, it’s beginning to get complicated when it comes to the CFP race. Auburn at LSU next Saturday.
--On a different note, the Heisman Trophy won by Ricky Williams in 1998 at Texas was sold at auction for $504,000, setting a record for the award.
The winning bid in Heritage Auctions’ Fall Sports Memorabilia Collectibles offerings exceeded the previous auction record for a Heisman set when Tim Brown’s 1987 trophy garnered $435,763 last December.
A big reason for the record is that Williams’ Heisman is the last one awarded before trophy winners were required to sign an agreement forfeiting the right to sell it, which is stupid. I mean I can understand if you were an underclassmen and still in school, but afterwards? C’mon.
When Williams earned the Heisman, he held the NCAA career rushing record with 6,592 yards, but it was broken a year later by Wisconsin’s Ron Dayne.
Williams then had an 11-year career in the NFL, rushing for 10,009 yards and 66 touchdowns. He was also one interesting dude, to say the least.
--Lastly a note on the high school gridiron. My alma mater, Summit, picked up a victory this weekend by forfeit, 2-0, over Warren Hills. The reason? 20 of the Warren Hills players were displaying symptoms of mononucleosis. Yikes! I mean you know then it’s not just the football team. There must be panic in the school; mono, in most cases, being highly contagious.
--The biggest story of the week occurred back on Thursday night, as the Chiefs broke their two-game losing streak, 30-6 winners at Denver to move to 5-2, Denver 2-5.
After starting the contest 10 of 11 passing, Chiefs superstar Patrick Mahomes suffered a gruesome looking knee injury, a dislocated kneecap, and the fear was he’d be lost for the season, bye-bye Chiefs’ Super Bowl hopes.
But word is he’ll miss a few weeks, which could mean three, five, six...who knows. The Chiefs have to survive until Mahomes does come back under 35-year-old Matt Moore and hope they are still very much in the playoff hunt.
But with an Oct. 29 trade deadline, will K.C. try to get someone like Miami’s Ryan Fitzpatrick, who is used to throwing downfield and would suit Andy Reid’s offense? I don’t believe the stories the Chiefs could get Marcus Mariota. That would be nuts on the part of Tennessee.
But back to Mahomes, I do agree with those, such as the Washington Post’s Jerry Brewer, who are pleading for the Chiefs not to rush the guy back...or rather for Mahomes not to push for his return, as will inevitably be the case. The NFL cannot afford to lose him long-term. It would also be a shame if his injuries (he was dealing with a bad ankle before the busted kneecap) limit his freewheeling style of play.
“If he can stay healthy and motivated, Mahomes could have 12 to 15 years left on his body and $500 million worth of earnings. His future is too important to risk. It goes beyond his bank account and the hopes of the Kansas City franchise, too. Mahomes is too valuable to the entire NFL.”
In games today, the Vikings are now 5-2, 42-30 winners at Detroit (2-3-1) as Kirk Cousins had this third straight superb effort, 24/34, 337, 4-0, 141.4. That’s three straight with a passer rating of 138.4+. My man Dalvin Cook rushed for 142 yards and two touchdowns.
Green Bay’s Aaron Rodgers pitched a perfect game, 25/31, 429, 5-0, 158.3 (a perfect rating), as the Packers moved to 6-1, 42-24 over Oakland (3-3). Eight different Packer receivers had 25+ yards.
Jared Goff had his best game in four weeks for the Rams, who moved back over .500, 4-3, with a 37-10 win at Atlanta (1-6). Goff threw for 268 yards and two touchdowns. Oh, to be a Falcons fan...cough cough....cough. They just suck. [The team, not the fans, who are said to be generally good people.]
Buffalo is 5-1 after a 31-21 win over Miami (0-6).
San Francisco is 6-0 following a 9-0 win at Washington (1-6). Trust me. The less said about this one the better. There were Pop Warner games this weekend far more entertaining than this debacle in the rain.
The surprising Indianapolis Colts are 4-2 after a nice 30-23 win at home over Houston (4-3), as Jacoby Brissett, 26/39, 326, 4-0, 126.7, easily outplayed his counterpart, Deshaun Watson, who threw two picks.
I watched the Giants (2-5) fall to the streaking Arizona Cardinals (3-3-1) 27-21, as both coaches exhibited just horrid clock management in the final minutes. The Cardinals have won three straight to become relevant, though rookie quarterback Kyler Murray is raw...very raw.
Arizona instead relied on second-year back Chase Edmonds, out of that big college football power Fordham (where I went to the funeral for Cardinal Avery Dulles a number of years ago, this good man the son of John Foster Dulles, but I digress wildly). Edmonds rushed for 126 yards and the Cards’ three touchdowns.
Giants rookie Daniel Jones was running for his life the entire game, sacked eight times, four by Chandler Jones, but he’ll be OK.
For Chandler Jones, he basically doubled his season sack total to 8.5, as he’s headed for his fifth straight season in double figures in this category, which you get paid good money for.
--Justin Thomas won the CJ Cup @ Nine Bridges in South Korea, winning by two over Danny Lee. For the 26-year-old, it was Thomas’ 11th win in this his sixth season on the PGA Tour. It was also his second in four starts, the other last August in the BMW Championship. [He also had a third place in the Tour Championship and a T-4 in the recent Safeway Open.]
--You have to be a little concerned that Brooks Koepka had to withdraw from the CJ Cup citing a knee injury. This is his second start of the season, having missed the cut at the Shriners Hospitals for Children Open in Vegas earlier this month. At the Shriners, he said he had received a stem-cell injection in his left knee. He had had a partially torn patella tendon, he said.
So before this week’s event, he said his knee was fine, “it feels good.” Koepka offered there might be one more round of stem cells during some time off at the end of the year. But after he withdrew, he said in a statement released through the Tour that he slipped on wet concrete and reaggravated the injury.
--Two-time PGA Tour winner Matt Every was suspended for 12 weeks for violating the Tour’s Conduct Policy for “drugs of abuse.” He can return in early January.
The Tour did not specify the drug and, as is its custom, would have no further comment on the suspension at the time, but Every, in a statement to Golf Channel, said, “I tested positive for cannabis, a drug I do not abuse and a drug I have a legal prescription for in the state of Florida. I have been prescribed cannabis for a mental health condition by my physician who has managed my medical care for 30 years. It has been determined that I am neither an acceptable candidate to use prescription ‘Z’ class drugs nor benzodiazepines. Additionally, these classes of drugs can be highly addictive and harmful to the human body. For me, cannabis has proven to be, by far, the safest and most effective treatment.”
Coors Light for me, for those of you playing along at home.
--The Champions Tour commenced its three-tournament race for the Charles Schwab Cup in Richmond this weekend, but rain postponed the final round to Monday, Tommy Tolles tied with Scott Parel. The top 54 advance to the second round, Nov. 1-3.
--Liverpool was attempting to tie Manchester City’s record win streak in the PL of 18, but ended up with a 1-1 draw today against Manchester United at Old Trafford, Liverpool needing a late equalizer from Adam Lallana to pull even.
So with Man City’s 2-0 win over Crystal Palace on Saturday, after nine of 38 matches, Liverpool’s lead was cut to six points, 25 to 19.
Also Saturday, Chelsea edged Newcastle 1-0, Leicester City beat Burnley 2-1, and my Tottenham Spurs needed a late goal at home to draw with cellar-dweller Watford 1-1. The Spurs’ troubles continue, and now we have another round of Champions League play this week, with Tottenham playing Liverpool in the PL next Saturday. It’s getting ugly, early.
--This month’s El Clasico between Barcelona and Real Madrid was postponed because of fears of civil unrest, after days of protest in Barcelona following the news nine Catalan separatist leaders were jailed on Monday. December 18 was proposed as a new date.
Rugby World Cup
The semifinals are set for next weekend. England vs. New Zealand; Wales vs. South Africa.
England whipped Australia, New Zealand’s All Blacks manhandled Ireland; South Africa ended host Japan’s dreams; and Wales edged France 20-19 in the quarterfinals.
Four drivers were eliminated from the Monster Energy Cup Series Playoffs today at Kansas Speedway, in another exciting finish, your editor watching a lot of this.
Brad Keselowski, William Byron, Alex Bowman and Clint Bowyer are out, when it seemed Keselowski was in until a second restart late due to a crash.
Advancing to the Round of 8...
Kyle Larson, Ryan Blaney, Kyle Busch, Martin Truex Jr., Denny Hamlin, Kevin Harvick, Joey Logano and Chase Elliott.
Three races now to winnow the field to a final four...Martinsville, Texas, and Arizona, before the finale at Homestead.
Seriously, the playoff format is super. There was big drama on the final lap between Elliott and Keselowski for the eighth spot.
But we continue to get sparse coverage of the Monster Energy Girls....Brandy, Crystal, Tiffany, Amber....
Kind of hard to believe the NBA season is commencing this week. Sports Illustrated has the Clippers, with Paul George and Kawhi Leonard, prevailing over Giannis and the Bucks in the Finals come next spring.
My Knicks are picked 14th of 15 in the East, which is where they’ll end up. After six straight losing seasons, including last year’s horrid 17-65 mark, it’s going to be more of the same, with coach David Fizdale let go at midseason, I imagine.
We’ve actually had two 17-65 seasons in this latest run of futility. But it’s nothing to get out the sword for. I mean as Tony Soprano would say, “Whaddya gonna do?”
Meanwhile, Pelicans rookie Zion Williamson is expected to miss a few weeks due to an injury to his right knee, though more out of an abundance of caution than actual severity, we are told.
And the basketball world awaits what would be a memorable moment...Philadelphia’s Ben Simmons finally hitting a 3-point shot, Simmons 0-for-17 in his career from beyond the arc.
--Boxer Patrick Day died Wednesday after suffering a traumatic brain injury last Saturday night during a bout in Chicago. He was 27.
Day was hospitalized and in “extremely critical condition” Saturday night after he was knocked out by Charles Conwell in the 10th round of their USBA super welterweight title fifth. Day was taken to Northwestern Memorial Hospital and underwent emergency surgery. He lapsed into a coma and never regained consciousness.
--Michael Stouber of Freehold, N.J., set a record for winnings in the daytime “The Price Is Right,” $262,743, including a special $200,000 slot on Plinko his disc dropped into. He also won a trip to Fiji and a new car.
Stouber appeared on last Monday morning’s episode, but the taping took place last month so he had to keep it quiet. Anyone who asked, he had to say, “Yeah, the trip (to Los Angeles) was great, we saw a taping of a show, it was cool. ‘It’s pretty wild.’”
--I was reading a story by Travis Andrews of the Washington Post on how Disney’s movie studio had a tough time in its early years. Like “Pinocchio” and “Fantasia” flopped initially, only to be revived later. It was 1941, the company was deeply in debt, the cartoonists went on strike, and to stay afloat, Disney produced and distributed U.S. propaganda, funded by the government.
Disney for the next few decades only made children’s movies.
But I loved the review for “Million Dollar Duck,” which was not about a family with a duck, but about a family with a goose that lays golden eggs, starring Dean Jones. The movie was reportedly one of just three films that Gene Siskel ever walked out on. His partner-in-criticism, Roger Ebert, wrote of the movie: “Walt Disney’s ‘$1,000,000 Duck’ is one of the most profoundly stupid movies I’ve ever seen.”
--Headline this evening from the New York Post:
“Jennifer Lawrence sparkles at wedding to Cooke Maroney”
I’m looking into changing my name to Cooke Editor.
Top 3 songs for the week of 10/25/75: #1 “Bad Blood” (Neil Sedaka) #2 “Calypso / I’m Sorry” (John Denver) #3 “Miracles” (Jefferson Starship...loved this one when it first came out...)...and...#4 “Lyin’ Eyes” (The Eagles...a classic...) #5 “ ‘They Just Can’t Stop It’ the (Games People Play)” (Spinners...super tune...) #6 “Feelings” (Morris Albert...woh woh woh fee-lins’...) #7 “Who Loves You” (Four Seasons) #8 “Island Girl” (Elton John) #9 “Ballroom Blitz” (Sweet) #10 “It Only Takes A Minute” (Tavares...another good one...You know what? That’s a damn good week...gets an ‘A’....)
World Series Quiz Answer: Last two pitchers with three complete games in a single World Series....Bob Gibson and Mickey Lolich, both in 1968; Detroit beating St. Louis in seven, Lolich 3-0, Gibson 2-1.
Gibson won Game 1, 4-0.
Lolich won Game 2, 8-1.
Gibson won Game 4, 10-1.
Lolich won Game 5, 5-3.
Lolich defeated Gibson in Game 7 (on two days rest) 4-1.
But ponder this. Bob Gibson also threw three complete games in each of the 1964 and 1967 World Series, MVP in both.
In all, Gibson started nine games in his three World Series, with nine complete games! 7-2, 1.89 ERA.
It’s why for most of us of a certain age, while Tom Seaver may have been our favorite pitcher, there was no better competitor in that era than Bob Gibson. Hell, the guy once stole five bases in a season.
But speaking of Seaver, having documented the entire 1969 season in this space, in the current issue of Sports Illustrated, the great Tom Verducci has a superb piece looking back on Seaver’s career, and life after baseball.
I wrote last week on Game 4 of the ’69 World Series, and how Seaver went all the way in a 2-1, 10-inning win over the Orioles.
What I didn’t know from that game was the following, as told by Verducci.
“Seaver covered 10 innings without allowing an extra-base hit. Only two pitchers ever had won a World Series game that way: Christy Mathewson in 1913 and Carl Hubbell in ’33. Nobody has done it since Seaver.”
Seaver threw 150 pitches that day on short rest.
Next Bar Chat, Thursday.
*It’s coming folks...I swear...I have to take a quick trip to Kazakhstan Monday for a confab with the All-Species List Supreme Council (I’ve never met the head, Ali Kamebeyzhanov). Upon my return, the long-awaited new Top Ten will be released.