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Go Japan! Go Matsuyama! Go Deacs!
[Posted Sun. p.m.]
San Diego Padres’ Opening Day Quiz: In honor of Joe Musgrove throwing the Padres’ first no-hitter Friday night, I have a ridiculously hard one for you. Granted, you have to be at least 60+ years of age to have the slightest of shots at getting this but name as many players as you can from the team’s Opening Day lineup, April 8, 1969…the first game in franchise history. I’ll give you the initials and the position.
1. R.R. / SS
2. R.P. / 2B
3. T.G. / CF
4. O.B. / RF
5. B.D. / 1B
6. L.S. / LF
7. E.S. / 3B
8. C.C. / C
9. D.S. / P
40-year-old Justin Rose, who has played terribly in the 2020-21 season coming into this week, with just one top 20 in seven events, fired a 7-under 65 to take a four-shot lead in the first round.
Rose then struggled in the second round, was 3-over thru seven, but he got it together and finished with an even-par 72.
So Rose was your leader after 36….
Will Zalatoris -6
Brian Harman -6
Marc Leishman -5
Jordan Spieth -5
Will Zalatoris? The 24-year-old out of Wake Forest burst on the scene with a T6 last September at the U.S. Open and he has had five top tens in 14 events as he tries to earn his tour card for 2021-22 (actually, he’s already done more than enough for it…it’s the whole deal with the pandemic and guys last season automatically getting a card for this year).
And it’s great to see Spieth follow up his win last week with a great start to this one.
Heading into the third round there was rain in the forecast late…which arrived…and then it became the Hideki Matsuyama show.
Matsuyama, the five-time winner on tour, but not since 2017, shot 6-under his final 8 holes after the brief delay, ending with a 7-under 65 to grab a four-shot lead. It was also the only bogey-free round of the tournament through the first three.
So Hideki was heading into Sunday with all the weight of an entire nation on his shoulders, as he attempts to become the first Japanese male golfer to win one of golf’s majors.
Xander Schauffele -7…after a fine 68 Saturday
Zalatoris then birdied Nos. 1 and 2 to get to -9, while Matsuyama bogeyed No. 1, the lead, just like that, only one.
But while both made some great par putts…further holes down….
Matsuyama -12 thru 8
Zalatoris -9 thru 9
And one hole later, Zalatoris’ putting stroke left him, while Hideki made a great birdie at No. 9…
Matsuyama -13 thru 9
Zalatoris -8 thru 10
Jon Rahm was in the house at -6 after a superb 66.
Five-stroke lead, the nation of Japan incredibly excited at about 5:30 a.m. Tokyo time.
And after 12…
Game over…until it wasn’t…
Schauffele birdied four straight, Matsuyama put it in the back water with his second shot on 15, which you seldom see, Hideki bogeying the hole.
But on the 16th, Schauffele shockingly hit it in the water left…which just doesn’t happen, and he ended up tripling the hole.
So it was basically over, though Matsuyama ended up winning by just one, Zalatoris hanging in there with a terrific par on 18, but Hideki with a relatively easy bogey to close the deal.
A great, great win for the sport. I’m very happy for Japan…and for Will Zalatoris.
They mentioned on the telecast that Patrick Reed called Zalatoris “Showtime,” for being one who could just as easily be in Hollywood because of his looks and the way he carries himself.
I was shocked no one said the obvious. He looks like Matthew McConaughey! With the very same swagger. Love it…being a fan of McConaughey as well.
Us Wake Forest fans have a new star to root for. Go Deacs!
--Among those missing the cut was defending champion Dustin Johnson, Brooks Koepka, Sergio Garcia and Rory McIlroy.
Bryson DeChambeau was way back at +5, T46, while Phil Mickelson acquitted himself well, finishing T21, even par.
--I loved this line from the Washington Post’s Chuck Culpepper concerning the 24-year-old Zalatoris, “whose 68 (Friday) followed a 70 to giggle at the applicable phrase ‘his first Masters,’ and who said, ‘I wanted to be here my entire life,’ that entirety not yet considerable.”
--Matthew Wolff was disqualified Friday after signing an incorrect scorecard following his second round.
After an opening 76, Wolff was six over for the day and 10 over for the tournament, well outside the cut line, as he played the 17th hole. He hit the fairway and the green in regulation, but three-putted for bogey. It is not clear what score he signed for, but the statement from Augusta National said he “returned a scorecard with a hole score lower than he actually made.”
Rule 3.3b(3) states that “if a hole score is lower than actually taken on that hole, the player is disqualified.”
Something is very wrong here. Wolff, who finished second at last fall’s U.S. Open at Winged Foot, and then followed that up with a loss in a playoff at the Shriners Hospitals for Children Open last October, has struggled since and skipped the Players Championship.
I have not seen any comment from him directly, but it’s disturbing. Did he blatantly attempt to cheat?
--That was a nice opening scene Thursday morning, as Lee Elder joined Jack Nicklaus and Gary Player to begin the tournament with a historic ceremony.
Elder, 86, was the first Black player to participate in the Masters in 1975 and he was added to the ceremonial threesome this year alongside Nicklaus and Player.
“To me, my heart is very soft this morning, not heavy soft, soft because of the wonderful things that I have encountered since arriving here on Monday and being able to see some of the great friends that I have made over the past years, especially like these two gentlemen that are here,” Elder said.
Kudos to former Masters champions Bubba Watson and Phil Mickelson for being in attendance.
Masters officials created two scholarships for players on the men’s golf team at Paine (Ga.) College, a historically Black college, in Elder’s name.
--The details of Tiger Woods’ crash in the Los Angeles area Feb. 23 have been emerging and one of the things we learned from a 22-page traffic collision report released by the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department on Friday is that Tiger believed he was in the state of Florida when a sheriff’s deputy interviewed him at a L.A.-area hospital after the crash.
The report concluded that Woods “was at fault in this collision for driving at an unsafe speed for road conditions (inability to negotiate a curve in the roadway).”
An analysis of the data from the black box recorder in the Genesis SUV that Woods was driving that day concluded that the SUV was traveling in a straight line, no brakes were applied and there was no steering input detected until some slight steering movement late in the recorded crash sequence.
“Had [Woods] applied his brakes to reduce his speed or steered to correct the direction of travel, he would not have collided with the center median and the collision would not have occurred,” L.A. County Sheriff’s Department Sgt. Michael Downing wrote in the report.
Deputy Carlos Gonzalez wrote that when he found Woods inside his overturned SUV on the side of the road, Woods was still in the driver’s seat with his seat belt on.
“[Woods] was acting in a manner consistent with someone suffering from shock due to having been involved in a major traffic collision,” Gonzalez wrote. “[Woods] was stuffing the deployed airbag back into the steering wheel. [Woods] was knocked unconscious during the collision and said he did not know how the collision occurred.”
The report said that aside from being knocked unconscious, Woods had lacerations to the lower front jaw, bruised right and left rib cages, fractured right tibia and fibula, and a possible right ankle injury.
Gonzalez noted in his report that Woods “had an open fracture mid shaft on his right leg below the knee” and “reacted to pain upon being moved from the vehicle.”
Due to Woods’ injuries, Gonzalez said he was unable to perform sobriety tests and found no alcoholic beverages, odor of alcoholic beverages or prescription medications in the SUV. There was an empty pill bottle with no labeling found in the front pocket of a backpack in the SUV according to a supplemental report.
Woods told Deputy Kyle Sullivan, who interviewed Woods while the laceration on his chin was being stitched by doctors at Harbor-UCLA Medical Center that he “did not remember being involved in a traffic collision” and “thought he was currently in the state of Florida.”
Woods told Sullivan that he didn’t remember anything after completing two long photo shoots the previous day, and Woods said he hadn’t consumed alcohol or taken prescription medication the previous night or that morning.
Footage from the resort in Palos Verdes, where Woods had been staying, showed that Woods “did not appear to have poor dexterity and he was not staggering or swaying” in the moments before he got into the SUV for the trip to another photo shoot.
Earlier in the week, Los Angeles County Sheriff Alex Villanueva said Woods’ SUV was traveling from 84 to 87 mph on a downhill stretch of road outside Los Angeles that had a speed limit of 45 and was going 75 mph when his car hit a tree.
Villanueva blamed the crash solely on excessive speed and Woods’ loss of control behind the wheel. Sheriff’s Capt. James Powers said there was no evidence that the golfer braked throughout the wreck and that it’s believed Woods inadvertently hit the accelerator instead of the brake pedal.
Yes, there are those saying Woods is getting special treatment, and he is. It’s Los Angeles. Lots of celebrities in the area get special treatment. It’s the fine line police walk there. Doesn’t make it right.
And others are pointing to the unlabeled empty pill bottle, and the lack of effort to test his blood.
But an L.A.-based DUI attorney, Myles Berman, told the Washington Post that the pill bottle should not have prompted deputies to test Woods’ blood. And he added that the sheriff’s department would have had a problem upholding a speeding ticket based only on the black box data because there was “no clear visual evidence” of Woods breaking the law.
There are also those writing that if he had killed someone, it’s vehicular homicide.
No s---. But he didn’t. For this, Tiger, the sports world and the community where the accident occurred should be forever grateful.
--Congratulations to San Diego Padres fans. Their long wait is over. On Friday night in Arlington, Texas, Padres pitcher Joe Musgrove threw the first no-hitter – in the team’s 8,206th regular-season game.
San Diego had been the only active MLB franchise without a no-no.
“It’s awesome to have it be in a Padres uniform,” said Musgrove, who had never thrown a no-hitter at any level. “To have it be the first in the history of the franchise, that’s incredible.”
It was only the 28-year-old’s second start for San Diego, though his family has long had season tickets.
Musgrove (2-0) struck out 10 and faced 28 batters, throwing 77 of his 112 pitches for strikes.
Padres manager Jayce Tingler let Musgrove go the distance because he was so efficient – and knowing what it would mean to have a hometown player end the franchise’s no-hitter drought in its 53rd season.
The only Rangers baserunner was Joey Gallo, who was hit by a pitch with two outs in the fourth inning. Jose Trevino had a hard lineout to right field for the final out of the eighth, and pinch-hitter David Dahl ripped the first out of the ninth right at second baseman Jake Cronenworth.
Musgrove, who previously pitched with Houston and Pittsburgh and is now 31-38, 4.20 ERA, lifetime, had never thrown a complete game in his prior 84 career starts.
Padres fan Bobby C. passed on a great line from Musgrove concerning the lone baserunner. “…the HBP probably saved me a couple of pitches, one of which he probably would have hit out of the park.”
The majors’ last no-hitter was thrown by the Cubs’ Alec Mills on Sept. 13, 2020 against Milwaukee. His catcher was Victor Caratini, who was also behind the plate for Musgrove.
Meanwhile there are conflicting reports on the health status of Padres star shortstop Fernando Tatis Jr. An MRI showed “a slight labral tear” in his left should after he suffered a dislocation about a week ago. General Manager A.J. Preller said it would not require season-ending surgery, and Tatis, on the 10-day IL currently, is taking grounders. But we’ll see when he actually comes back and takes a full swing.
This offseason the Padres signed the 22-year-old to a 14-year, $340 million contract.
--Musgrove’s complete game was the second in baseball’s first eight days, the White Sox’ Lance Lynn throwing a complete-game shutout on Thursday, 6-0 over the Royals. It was manager Tony La Russa’s first win at home on the South Side in 35 years.
Lynn (1-0) struck out 11 and walked none in his second shutout in 238 career starts, his first since a five-hitter against the Yankees on May 27, 2014. He threw 79 of 111 pitches for strikes in just his fourth complete game ever; kind of surprising given in today’s modern game he is considered an “innings eater,” having thrown 200 innings in three seasons, including 2019 with Texas. On a good team, he’s your classic 4th starter, ideally. The guy has a fine 105-71, 3.54, career record.
Separately, star Chicago shortstop Tim Anderson is expected to return from a strained left hamstring once he’s eligible to be activated from the 10-day IL on April 15.
--So I’m putting off writing about the start for New York’s ballclubs.
The Mets won a game Thursday in the ugliest of fashions, 3-2, over Miami in their home opener when, after Jeff McNeil launched a dramatic tying home run in the bottom of the ninth to tie it at 2-2 for the Metsies, they loaded the bases with one out. Up stepped the struggling Michael Conforto and he stuck out his right elbow pad just enough to get it grazed by a 1-2 breaking ball from Marlins closer Anthony Bass that looked to be in the strike zone.
Plate umpire and crew chief Ron Kulpa at first signaled a strike, then quickly ruled Conforto was hit by the pitch. Conforto headed to first, Luis Guillorme scored and the Mets celebrated a fortuitous win.
We cheated. As a fan I was disgusted. The Mets broadcasting team of Gary Cohen, Ron Darling and Keith Hernandez was as well.
There was all kinds of post-game debate about the call by Kulpa, which Marlins manager Don Mattingly argued over vociferously, but it was too late. The play was reviewed, but according to replay regulations, whether the pitch was in the strike zone or the batter made any attempt to evade it is not subject to video review. Those are umpire judgment calls, and only whether the ball touched the batter is reviewable.
Kulpa agreed after, “The guy was hit by the pitch in the strike zone. I should have called him out.”
According to the rules, if a batter is plunked by a pitch in the strike zone, it’s a strike and not a hit by pitch.
But the Mets, who had their opening-season series with the Nationals wiped out by Covid, were 2-2. Off day Friday (stupid) and then they sent out Jacob deGrom to the mound Saturday afternoon to face Miami. DeGrom has the best ERA in baseball history in day games since 1913, minimum 50 starts, 1.88 entering the game.
So the Mets then of course didn’t support deGrom, losing 3-0 despite eight innings of one-run ball, a career-tying 14 strikeouts from the two-time Cy Young Award winner. [Daytime ERA now 1.87 in 60 starts.]
The Mets were 2-3 heading into Sunday’s game, and distressingly 6 of 41 with runners in scoring position, .146. The aforementioned Michael Conforto has been brutal the last three in RISP situations, 0-7, all critical spots, and he’s been deserving of the boos he is getting from the Covid-restricted crowds.
Back to deGrom, since 2018, he has a 2.06 ERA, best in baseball, and the Mets are six games below .500 in games he has started, 36-42.
Overall, he is 70-52 lifetime with a 2.59 ERA. Realistically, he should be about 90-40.
Today, the Mets stupidly tried to get a game in despite the ugly forecast and sent Marcus Stroman to the mound for all of nine pitches…and then they ‘suspended’ it….resumed Aug. 31. What a s---show.
As for the Yankees, they were 3-5 after losing to their nemesis, the Tampa Bay Rays, 10-5 and 4-0, Friday and Saturday.
The issue here is twofold. Tampa Bay has beaten the Yankees in 13 of 17 games since the outset of last year, including the 2020 Division Series. Head-to-head, despite the Rays losing Charlie Morton to free agency and Blake Snell to a trade, they’re still better.
The other serious issue for the Yankees is they are incredibly one-dimensional. Home run or bust. They simply aren’t built to manufacture runs. And the big boppers, Aaron Judge and Giancarlo Stanton, are fragile…constantly on the injured list, often for long stretches.
Additionally, starting pitcher Domingo German, counted on bigly after a long absence due to a domestic assault case, was optioned to the Yankees’ alternate site after his second straight poor performance Saturday.
But the Yanks won today, 8-4 in extra innings, posting four in the tenth.
--Can we talk about the Red Sox? They started the season 0-3 and as a subscriber to the Boston Globe, Red Sox Nation was apoplectic.
And now…they are 6-3…and J.D. Martinez, who sat out Saturday over Covid questions, hit three home runs today, driving in four, as Boston beat Baltimore 14-9.
J.D. has five homers and 16 RBIs already! This from a guy who after three, 100-RBI seasons, 2017-2019, had a miserable 2020, batting .213 with 27 ribbies in 54 games.
--Former Met Steven Matz is 2-0, 1.46, after throwing six innings of one-run ball Saturday night in Dunedin, Fla., the Blue Jays (4-5) blasting the Angels (6-3) 15-1. Mets fans can only shake their heads. He’s a very likeable guy, but while he had his moments, he could also be hideous, none more so than last year’s lost season.
--Kevin Durant finally returned after being out 23 games on Wednesday and the Nets dropped 79 points on the Pelicans just in the first half! Brooklyn would go on to cruise, 139-111, as Durant was perfect….5 of 5 from the field (2 of 2 from three), 5 of 5 from the line…17 points in 19 minutes, 7 rebounds and 5 assists (and six turnovers).
The Nets then didn’t play again until Saturday, a delicious national television matchup in Brooklyn with the Lakers but, alas, no LeBron, out with his high-ankle sprain until late April, and Anthony Davis, out since mid-February with a calf strain and Achilles discomfort. Davis should return next week. Kyle Kuzma and Marc Gasol were also out for L.A. The Nets were without James Harden.
So the Nets had an advantage on paper, until they didn’t. It was 66-62 Lakers when Kyrie Irving fouled Dennis Schroder with 9:41 left in the third. The two began jawing at each other, and before you could say Sha-zam, both were ejected. The Lakers then rolled 126-101. Durant had 22 points in 24 minutes.
--The Knicks are struggling but had a nice come-from-behind 133-129 win in overtime against the Grizzlies (26-24) at the Garden Friday night. For the 26-27 Knickerbockers, it might have been their season, as in a crushing loss that would send them spiraling further down the standings.
So as I go to post Sunday, they are playing the 20-32 Raptors…a must win contest.
--Saturday night, the Trail Blazers beat the Pistons in Portland 118-103 as Portland’s Enes Kanter had 24 points and 30…30…rebounds, a team record and the first in the NBA to get 30 in three years.
Kanter was a popular Knick for 1 ½ seasons, a rebounding machine, but the rap has always been he couldn’t play defense.
--I can’t help but note that in the Clippers’ 126-109 win over the Houston Rockets on Friday, the Clippers were caught flat-footed by the Rockets’ early energy and trailed by 14 in the second quarter, before going on a 41-4 run to close out the half. 41-4!!! [The Clippers outscored the Rockets 41-10 in the second quarter. The 10 points were the fewest scored in any quarter by any team this season.]
--Alex Rodriguez may have been shut out from buying the Mets, in combo with J-Lo, which we now know would have been a disaster – as much as I would have had no problem with J-Lo being part of every Mets telecast – but now A-Rod, in tandem with his very wealthy friend, Marc Lore, are in the process of becoming owners of the Minnesota Timberwolves. Having signed a letter of intent with current owner Glen Taylor, Rodriguez and Lore have a 30-day window to get it done.
A-Rod and Lore would be 50-50 partners. But Taylor wouldn’t give up full control for 2 ½ years.
The purchase price is expected to be in the $1.5 billion range, according to ESPN.
Lore built his first fortune by selling Diapers.com to Amazon for $250 million. He then founded several other companies that were acquired for huge sums.
--In the college game, UCLA rewarded Mick Cronin with a two-year contract extension worth a guaranteed $4 million per year.
The additional years will keep Cronin under contract through the 2026-27 season after he guided the Bruins to their deepest tournament run since 2008.
--Arizona fired coach Sean Miller, which was zero surprise. Some of us just wonder why it took so long.
Arizona has been ensnared in the 2017 federal investigation into corruption in college basketball. Former assistant coach Emanuel “Book” Richardson pleaded guilty to one felony count of conspiracy to commit bribery after being accuse of accepting $20,000 to steer Arizona players to aspiring sports agent Christopher Dawkins. During Dawkins’ trial, prosecutors played an FBI-intercepted call in which Richardson told Dawkins that Miller was paying $10,000 a month for former player DeAndre Ayton. Miller has consistently denied paying players to attend Arizona.
The NCAA charged the school with five Level I violations, according to a notice of allegations released last month. The program was hit with two alleged instances of academic misconduct, while Miller was charged for not demonstrating “that he promoted an atmosphere for compliance and monitored his staff.”
Arizona self-imposed a one-year postseason ban for this past season.
Miller has been in Tucson since 2009, leading the Wildcats to seven NCAA tournaments and three Elite Eight appearances. Arizona won at least a share of five Pac-12 regular-season championships under Miller, who had one year left on his contract.
--Deshaun Watson’s lawyer, Rusty Hardin, acknowledged during a Friday news conference that there were some “consensual encounters” between Watson and some of the 22 women who have flied lawsuits against him, but he said at no point did Watson engage in any acts that were not “mutually desired.”
“Were there sometimes consensual encounters? Yes,” Hardin said.
When asked to clarify his comments, seeing as some of the women who have filed lawsuits against him are alleging inappropriate behavior and sexual assault, Hardin replied, “In some of these massages there’s going to be no question. We’ve never run from it.”
Earlier Friday, two judges ruled that most of the plaintiffs suing Watson must identify themselves. Prior to Friday, only two women had publicly came forward.
Hardin has accused plaintiffs’ attorney, Tony Buzbee, of using the women’s anonymity to “kill the reputation of our client.”
Buzbee said, “They are ready to be identified. …As I said in court, be careful what you ask for. Identifying these women at this point adds even more credibility to the allegations being made, and I am proud to stand with these brave and courageous women.”
The NFL has only said thus far, through a spokesperson, that the league “takes these issues very seriously” and finds the allegations “deeply disturbing.”
Meanwhile, Nike has suspended its endorsement deal Watson.
“We are deeply concerned by the disturbing allegations and have suspended Deshaun Watson. We will continue to closely monitor the situation,” Nike said in a statement to the televised network.
--Ordinarily I wouldn’t report on a murder case in South Carolina in this space, but the tragedy in Rock Hill involves a former NFL player, Philip Adams, who killed a doctor, his wife, their two young grandchildren, and two workers at the physician’s property on Wednesday evening, Adams then killing himself. [The sixth victim died Saturday of his wounds.]
There are a few theories as to why Adams did what he did that are meaningless at this point…EXCEPT for the potential, emphasize potential, impact of CTE given Adams’ playing history. His brain has been donated to Boston University for study.
The 32-year-old cornerback spent six seasons in the NFL with the Falcons, Jets, Raiders, Seahawks and 49ers after being drafted out of South Carolina State University.
Adams’ father’s initial reaction was perhaps telling. “Football messed him up.”
Among the injuries we know of, Adams had two concussions over three games while with the Raiders in 2012.
--The Vancouver Canucks say 25 members of the organization, including 21 players, have tested positive for the coronavirus.
The team was shut down last week, but they’ve been okayed to return April 16, scores of games having been cancelled.
The NHL still believes the Canucks will be able to conclude their 56-game schedule, however, though the North Division will end its season May 16, not May 11 as originally planned.
--In college hockey, congratulations to the University of Massachusetts for their first title in the Frozen Four final in Pittsburgh on Saturday, 5-0 over St. Cloud State, getting the five goals from five different players.
Junior goalie Filip Lindberg, who missed Thursday’s semifinal because of Covid-19 contact tracing protocols, was back in net for UMass, recording 24 saves for his fourth career shutout in the tournament, an NCAA record.
In action this weekend, Saturday, Leeds had a super win on the road at Manchester City, 2-1, despite being a man down the entire second period. Liverpool beat Aston Villa 2-1, and Chelsea whipped Crystal Palace 4-1, as the United States’ Christian Pulisic tallied twice.
Sunday, West Ham beat Leicester City 3-2 in a huge one, and put a fork in my Tottenham Spurs, 3-1 losers in a critical contest to Manchester United.
Standings 31/32 of 38…Played – Points
1. Man City…32 – 74
2. Man U…31 – 63 …with game in hand, ain’t over ‘til it’s over…
3. Leicester…31 – 56
4. West Ham…31 – 55 …Champions League line
5. Chelsea…31 – 54
6. Liverpool…31 – 52
7. Tottenham…31 – 49
8. Everton…29 – 47 …they play Brighton tomorrow, and with their games in hand could quickly become a big factor in the CL race.
--A rare edition of a comic in which Superman made his first ever appearance has sold for a record $3.25 million. The issue of Action Comics #1, which sold for 10 cents when it was released in 1938, is the world’s most valuable comic book.
The comic includes the story of Superman’s origins and is considered to be the start of the superhero genre.
It is thought only around 100 copies of the comic still exist.
The particular copy was “buried in a stack of old 1930s movie magazines” and was in mint condition, online auction house ComicConnect.com said in a statement.
The comic explains how Superman came to earth from another planet and went on to become Clark Kent.
The seller made a $1 million profit on the comic after owning it for just three years. The anonymous buyer is “relatively new to comic investing,” the statement said.
--I was reading an article from the Nat Geo website by Rachael Bale that is rather important for those of you with bird feeders.
“The birds in my neighborhood are voracious, so I find myself refilling the feeder often. That means I also find myself thinking about salmonella often. Wild birds can spread it, helped along by birdbaths and bird feeders. In fact, a few days ago, the CDC announced that a salmonella outbreak that has sickened 19 people across eight states is linked to songbirds. In particular, they pointed to the pine siskin, a North American finch that looks kind of like a sparrow.
“I always, always, always wash my hands after touching the bird feeder, and before I refill it. I wash it with soap and boiling water and let it dry completely. This helps prevent more than just the spread of salmonella. Decomposing seeds stuck in cracks can make birds sick, and bird droppings can carry other bacteria too. Trichomonosis has killed more than half of the greenfinch population in the United Kingdom.
“The Cornell Lab of Ornithology recommends cleaning your feeder once every two weeks, or more if the weather has been damp or if there are local reports of salmonella. Soap and boiling water works, or you can use a diluted bleach solution.”
I passed this along to a good friend who has a series of terrific bird feeders at his cool place next to the Great Swamp and he realized, he never washes his hands after going to the feeder.
So this is your PSA. You don’t need to be reminded to wash your hands these days with Covid, but also make sure your kids know this fact.
--A South Carolina hunter got the shock of his life when he killed a monster 12-foot long, 445-pound monster “nuisance gator” along the Edisto River in the alligator-laden ACE Basin estuary.
But after taking the gator to a taxidermist, Ned McNeely found out the gator was not only a nuisance but a serial dog murderer.
The taxidermist, which is also a butcher shop, Cordray’s, revealed in a Facebook post, “We don’t usually open up the stomach but we did today. 5 dog tags, 1 bullet jacket, a spark plug, loads of turtle shells, and several bobcat claws were inside.”
One of the tags had a phone number that worked and the man answering the phone “confirmed he’d lost a hound dog 24 years earlier while hunting leased property near where the alligator was killed,” according to the local CBS station.
--No secret I’m not a big fan of rap music, but certainly knew of hip-hop star DMX, the talented but troubled rapper whose hit-making careers in music and movies disappeared amid his drug addiction and constant legal woes. DMX died Friday after suffering a heart attack in his Westchester County, NY, home a week ago.
DMX was known for his breakout single “Get at Me Dog” and the Top 10 smash “Party Up (In Here). He had been rushed to a critical care unit at White Plains Hospital after collapsing in his home there on April 2.
The comatose rapper, a three-time Grammy Award nominee born Earl Simmons, was placed on a ventilator and never regained consciousness before dying with family members by his side.
The hospital cited his cause of death as “a catastrophic cardiac arrest.”
Top 3 songs for the week of 4/15/72: #1 “The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face” (Roberta Flack…Clint Eastwood and Donna Mills, err, you know, umm, have some fun to this tune in the cult-classic film, “Play Misty For Me”) #2 “A Horse With No Name” (America…wouldn’t be a good moniker for a Derby contender…just sayin’…) #3 “I Gotcha” (Joe Tex)…and…#4 “Rockin’ Robin” (Michael Jackson…godawful…) #5 “Heart Of Gold” (Neil Young) #6 “In The Rain” (Dramatics) #7 “Puppy Love” (Donny Osmond) #8 “Betcha By Golly, Wow” (The Stylistics…#6 and #8 great tunes…) #9 “Day Dreaming” (Aretha Franklin…in my top three of hers…) #10 “A Cowboy’s Work Is Never Done” (Sonny & Cher…B+ week, ruined by some clunkers…)
San Diego Padres Quiz Answer: Opening Day lineup April 8, 1969….
1. Rafael Robles, SS
2. Roberto Pena, 2B
3. Tony Gonzalez, CF
4. Ollie Brown, RF
5. Bill Davis, 1B
6. Larry Stahl, CF
7. Ed Spiezio, 3B
8. Chris Cannizzaro, C
9. Dick Selma, P
Selma pitched a complete game, 12 strikeouts, as the Padres won their first ever, 2-1 over the Astros and Don Wilson. Selma went 2-for-2 at the plate, two of the four San Diego hits. Spiezio hit a solo home run and Ollie Brown doubled in a run. That was it.
San Diego actually won its first three! 2-1, 2-0, 2-0. They only had 13 hits over the three.
Alas, they finished the season 52-110.
Selma was traded to the Cubs late April (for Joe Niekro, among others) and became a major piece of Chicago’s quest for the N.L. East pennant, only to see the Miracle Mets overpower them late in the season.
Next Bar Chat, Tues. p.m.