The U.S. women’s national soccer team won the largest margin of victory in World Cup history—for both genders—in their Tuesday 13-0 match”

Alex Morgan scored five goals, which I believe is more goals than all the other soccer players in history added together.

All kidding aside, I went to high school with a guy named Bob Cupello, who once scored seven goals in a single college soccer match.

Back when I was in high school, none of our American guys knew how to play soccer. We all grew up playing the three main American sports. Yet our high school had a soccer team. Our coach, although he was a good coach at other sports, actually had no idea how to play soccer. He learned the rules when they gave him the job.

Yet we had one of the better soccer teams in the state. One year we finished undefeated. We sometimes won games by 5-8 goals.

How could that be? The above-mentioned Bob Cupello, who was born in Italy, ran rough-shod over all of our competitors, whose American guys sucked just as badly as ours, and did not have any Italian superstars to offset their ineptness. Most of the time Bob didn’t even bother passing. He just got the ball, then did some fancy dribbling and spinning past the opponents. He was not even bothered by double and triple teaming. Imagine Magic Johnson playing basketball against a bunch of middle school kids and you’ll get the general picture.

When he was not busy scoring goals, Cupello would spend practices teaching the coach and his teammates the rudiments of the game.

Our coach didn’t exactly believe in inspirational speeches. There was none of that “Win one for the Gipper” crap for that taciturn fellow. He offered only one tidbit of wisdom and strategy to the team: “Gentlemen, there is only one thing you have to remember out there. Don’t get between Cupello and the goal.”

Billy Buck could play.

He had his best years with the Cubs, for whom he won an NL batting championship and twice led the league in doubles. He also had two fine years for the Red Sox in 1985 and 1986, knocking in more than 100 runs each time, but we all know that the 1986 season was spoiled by one crucial ground ball that rolled through his legs, placing him in a club he could never escape: the famous goats. Since he did his purgatory on earth, he’s up there in heaven now, talkin’ baseball with fellow club members Bonehead Merkle, Mickey Owen, Fred Snodgrass and Roger Peckinpaugh.

Below – the catch Bill did not miss, from “Curb Your Enthusiasm”

He participates in a circuit called “Bar Wrestling,” which I assume is like “Saloon Singing,” except potentially fatal.

Although I guess saloon singing could have been fatal if you stole a prime gig from Sinatra.

“Last November Arquette was hospitalized after suffering an infection when his neck was slashed by a glass tube in an extreme exhibition match against Nick Gage. The 47-year-old admits that the ‘scary’ injury came just centimeters from his main artery and could have been his last moment on earth.”

His line: .131, .198, .179

If you are a baseball fan, you probably know the answer already.

If you are a God fan, you may know, but you wonder why the good lord would let this happen to one of his anointed.

No matter how poorly he plays, Tim Tebow is great for attendance. That must be because of those God fans, because baseball fans can see better hitting in little league.

It traveled 472 feet from ground level to ground level, which is one of the longest such homers ever recorded. Most long homers land up in the stands or hit something before touching down, thus requiring a trajectory calculation to estimate the distance from ground-to-ground. To my knowledge, the longest officially certified ground-to-ground homer was the one Kingman hit in Wrigley, his third homer of the infamous 23-22 game (see below). It is possible that Kingman’s wind-aided homer landed the farthest from home plate of any blast in history, because the ones we consider longer are based on theoretical landing places, while Kingman’s actually came to earth, on camera, 530 feet away. Next week will mark the 40th anniversary of that crazy day when a strong wind blowing out to left allowed the Phillies and Cubs to combine for 45 runs on 50 hits. Neither starter lasted longer than a third of an inning!

The Churchill Downs race stewards took Maximum Security off the board and made Country House the winner of Saturday’s 145th Run for the Roses in Louisville, Kentucky.

Country House had never won a race of any kind, let alone the prestigious Derby, and went off at 65-1. He is the winner with the longest odds in the past 100 years. Way back in 1913, winner Donerail was the only winner to prevail over longer odds. That one was far more extraordinary. Donerail went off at 91-1 despite the fact that there were only eight horses in the field!

Russia’s Mariia Bocharova is a 6’0″ superstar of women’s beach volleyball. Russia has never won an Olympic medal in that sport, so Mariia and her partner (Maria Voronina) are the Great Red Hope. They are still only 17 and 19 years old, so they will still be fresh-legged kids in the 2020 Olympiad.

(Only five countries have ever won a medal in women’s beach volleyball: Brazil, USA, Australia, China and Germany)

16 year old Selina Soule Speaks Up: Connecticut State Championships and the Equality Act

There is no way that genetic females can run against genetic males in sprints. The transgender student who won the Connecticut state woman’s championship would not have placed in the top 100 among the men. The women who complained about this situation have been painted by the media as bigots and sore losers and, worst of all, have been told that they should try harder! To really rub it in, the transgenders are being given not only the medals, but some “courage awards” as well!

This is really a mine field for the “woke,” with (for them) only lose-lose options. Whichever side they take, they offend some minority. Even the LGBTQ community is not united on this front. It’s not just hetero women that don’t want to run against genetic males. Lesbian athletes don’t want to either.

So far this subject has not received much national attention because there’s not much money involved. Some genetic women stand to lose college scholarships. Or maybe they won’t. We don’t know. But as Deep Throat wisely counseled, we had better follow the money. There’s not much moola in track, but what should the rules be when transgender athletes start to take millions away from genetic females in lucrative women’s sports like tennis and golf? At this point, our culture does not seem to have the universal ethical basis that would allow us to lay the groundwork for these rules.

He’s batting .431, although he couldn’t buy a hit in the post-season last year, and hit only .226 in spring training.

He has set these records:

  • most RBI before May 1
  • most total bases before May 1

He has tied this one:

  • most HR before May 1

In two full years in the minors, he batted .271 and .264. In two previous years with the Dodgers, he batted .260 and .267. After establishing that completely consistent level of performance, he has broken free this year. Whatever that Dodgers’ hitting coach noticed this spring must have been crucial.

Depends on your definition.

If you include those elected for something other than playing, then it’s Tommy Lasorda, who is 91. LaSorda did play in MLB briefly, but his playing career played no role in his election to the Hall. His lifetime winning percentage as a pitcher was a nice round zero. Taking second place, just two months younger than Lasorda, is a man from the broadcasters’ wing of the Hall, my fellow Fordham alum (where we both majored in English and announced on WFUV), the legendary Vin Scully. Both Lasorda and Scully earned their greatest plaudits with the same team, the Dodgers.

If you’re talking about those who earned their plaque on the playing field, then the elder statesman is the crafty old lefty himself, the great Whitey Ford, who is 90. Second place in the player wing goes to Willie Mays, who some argue is the greatest overall player ever to grace the diamond. The Say Hey Geezer turns 88 next week.

All four of those men began their careers on teams based in New York. Lasorda and Scully started with the Brooklyn Dodgers, Mays with the New York Giants, Ford with the New York Yankees. Ford and Scully were also born in New York. This is not a demonstration that New Yorkers are long-lived, but rather a reflection of how important New York was to the game before 1958.

RELATED:

The oldest living major leaguer is somebody you probably never heard of, because I never heard of him before I started typing this paragraph. His name is Tom Jordan, a bench-warmer who retired from MLB before I was born!

Tough outing for the Mets’ Steven Matz. His line for the day: eight runs allowed (six earned) in NO innings pitched. That’ll kill the ol’ ERA, which went from 1.65 to 4.96!

After those eight batters, a relief pitcher entered, but the Phillies still managed two more doubles and a walk that inning. Final first-inning total: 10 runs produced by 14 plate appearances. JT Realmuto had two doubles and four RBI in that inning, and added a homer in the fifth.

Realmuto is yet another former member of the 2017 Marlins now starring elsewhere, along with Yelich, Stanton and Ozuna. Derek Jeter must have a really long-term plan in mind for his Marlins.

Wow, this guy is good. Just another day at the factory today – three homers and seven RBI.

He went 0-for-8 in the previous two games, so he took all kinds of extra BP.

Pretty sure it worked.

Here’s something to think about: Yelich seems like the young upstart poised to someday wrest the “best player” crown from the established king, Mike Trout.

Except that Trout and Yelich are the same age! Trout, at 27, already has seven full seasons in the books, none of them less than excellent. The lowest he has ever finished in the MVP balloting was 4th – and that year he led the AL in both
slugging average and on-base percentage.

Of course Trout will make $36 million this year, and Yelich will make $9 million, so Yelich might be the best player per dollar. There must be a Brewer executive who knew Yelich would be that good, despite a 2017 season when he hit only .282 with a mediocre 18 homers. That person, whoever he or she is, is a baseball genius.

There’s an article in today’s WaPo about Fleetwood Walker, a black man who played in the major leagues before Jackie Robinson, albeit in the 19th century.

I’m glad to see Fleet get the recognition he deserved, but I’m not even going to link to the WaPo article because it is basically wrong about everything. (Could Trump be right about “fake news”? I hope WaPo’s contributors know more about politics than they know about baseball.)

1) Fleetwood Walker wasn’t the first black man to play in the majors, although he was the first regular, as far as we know. The first one we are currently aware of was a star Brown University player named William Edward White, who played one game on June 21, 1879 when called into emergency service by an injury affecting the crosstown National League team, the Providence Grays. He had a single in four at-bats, two stolen bases, scored a run, and played errorless ball at first base, recording 12 putouts.

One of the very cool things about William Edward White is that he looks like a time-traveling Barack Obama!

2) Jackie Robinson wasn’t the first black man to play in the modern game, and therefore did not break the modern “color” barrier. His specific achievement was that he was the first African-American man to play in the 20th century. In 1944, however, three years before Robinson’s debut, an African-Cuban man named Tomas de la Cruz slipped under the radar as a regular starting pitcher for the Cincinnati Reds. (De la Cruz’s achievement is doubly impressive, because he wasn’t even playing in a friendly home town. Cincinnati is just about a southern city, with suburbs in Kentucky! One must wince to think of the problems he must have endured.)

With WW2 raging, the majors were so desperate for players in 1944 that “Tommy” was barely noticed. Although he pitched respectably (9-9, 3.25 ERA), he was no longer on the roster once the first white guys started drifting back from the war. In an odd coincidence, de la Cruz also wore #42, the number Robinson would make famous.

3) De la Cruz was obviously a black guy, but even before him came at least three Latin-American players of mixed descent (some African included) who slipped under the racial radar: Roberto Estalella, Alex Carrasquel, and Hiram Bithorn.

4) Hi Bithorn also owns a claim to another bit of historical importance. He was the first Puerto Rican to play in MLB, and should also be called the first Puerto Rican star, easily preceding Vic Power and Roberto Clemente, because in 1943 he won 18 games for the Cubs and led the National League in shutouts. (Clemente was 9 years old at the time.)

He had gone 0-for-54 over two seasons before today’s game, when he came up with his first hit since September 14th of last year! He went on to get two more in the game.

He’s making $23 million per year and still has nearly four years left on his contract.

* In the year before he signed that contract, he hit 47 homers, and that wasn’t even his career high. Here are his homer totals since: 38, 26, 16, 0.

* His batting average has also dropped each year. He batted .262 in his contract year, then .221, .215, .168, .079.

He has simply not found any groove in at least two years. He followed his .168 last year with a .189 in spring training, then started this season 0-for-33 before today’s game.

He’s leading the majors in homers, with nine in just sixteen games, accumulating only 68 plate appearances. Nobody else in the majors has hit more than seven homers.

So what’s so weird? He is the ultimate exemplification of the new MLB “all or nothing” strategy. He has no doubles, no triples, and only eight singles. With those singles and a mere four walks, he has been standing on a base only twelve times all year and has never reached scoring position on his own! As a result, he almost never scores a run unless he hits a homer. He is currently on pace for 90 homers, but only 110 runs scored!

Speaking of baseball …

I saw Blake Snell pitch against the Rockies last week when I was visiting friends in SW Florida. That was the best outing I have ever seen as a ballpark spectator. It seemed like he threw every single pitch at the knees, and some of them were breaking sharply downward as they passed. He struck out 13 in just seven innings, and allowed only three baserunners, one of whom was caught stealing. He had still faced the minimum number of batters in the top of the sixth, and not a single member of the Rockies ever reached scoring position. I knew the kid must be good because he won the Cy Young last year, winning 21 games in just 180 innings, but this was better than good. He pitched one for the ages.

This one is only for my fellow baseball fanatics …

When I was a kid, all the record books and all the keepers of baseball lore reported that Old Hoss Radbourn won 60 games in 1884. This was later revised to 59, but that decision has now been reversed and he’s back up to 60. This article explains why this keeps changing.

A bit of background is provided in the “continue reading” section:

Continue reading “Old Hoss Radbourn is back to 60 wins”

“The main event, however, wasn’t perfect. The crowd seemed to be tired after six-plus hours of action and the ending wasn’t well received by fans who didn’t know the ref was counting when Rousey was pinned by Lynch or if she was even pinned at all or if that was really the way it was supposed to go. It all just seemed odd.”

Twitter was not happy with this!

Wrestling insiders say: (1) the controversial finish was unplanned; (2) Rousey broke a hand during the match.

The show ran more than seven hours. Complete results.