Monday, May 01, 2017


MAY 1, 2017

Yes Victoria and I managed to get some much needed R n’ R in Sarasota. While I was away, I could still follow the Red Sox for Sunday and Patriots’ Day games. The Bruins were on – valiantly trying to overcome too many lost players including their most important defensemen Krug (especially on the power play), McQuaid, and rookie Brandon Carlo. The 6 games were all decided by a goal and 4 in OT. Playoff hockey is exhilarating. The young Bruins like Carlo and Charlie McAvoy will lead the way in what looks like a promising future if even just a few of the prospects pan out.

Meanwhile the Celtics were doing the unthinkable losing at home twice to the Bulls. Isaiah Thomas was playing with a heavy heart as his 22-year old sister died in a car crash just before the playoffs. In the Game 2 loss, Rajon Rondo had an incredible game just missing a triple double. After that he went out with a broken thumb and wrist injury. Rondo was then fined $25,000 for trying to trip Jae Crowder as he ran down the sidelines in front of the Chicago bench. Very classy of ‘Rockhead’ Rondo. The Bulls lost 4 straight after losing the Lost One.

Now the Celtics are on to the Washington Wizards and won Game #1 Sunday.

Oh and as an aside: while in Florida, I would buy the NY Times everyday (including their Sports Monday edition), and the Sarasota Herald-Tribune. Also got a couple USA Today’s. I was miffed to find that neither the NY Times nor USA Today had descriptions of the previous day’s baseball games, just the box scores. But the Sarasota paper had them. The ProJo has them too for those critical of the paper. Box scores still need work.

On a more serious side, while I was away, it was revealed that Aaron Hernandez left a note, one of three, to a prison inmate lover. If true, it would explain why Hernandez hanged himself. Gang members hate homosexuals. Hernandez probably feared someone would get him in prison. If the note exists, it will bolster that possibility.

On a more cheerful note (for Yankee fans), the NY Times’ Filip Bondy (4/17) had a great piece on Sparky Lyle, who is 72 and may attend this year’s Old Timers’ Game June 25.

This is the 40th anniversary of the Yankees championship in 1977 which broke a 15 year drought. Lyle had a Cy Young season and helped the Yankees to that championship. Down 2 to 1 in a 5 game set versus KC, Billy Martin pitched Lyle in the 4th inning of Game # 4. Lyle went 5 1/3 innings to preserve the 1-run lead. This after Lyle pitched 2 1/3 the day before. The Yanks beat KC and then LA in the Series. Lyle doesn’t think Billy Martin should be in Monument Park because he lied to his players. Albert ‘Sparky’ Lyle (age 28) was traded by Boston to NY in 1972. He was traded for Danny Cater and Mario Guererro. One of the worst BoSox trades ever. Thank Sox GM Dick O’Connell.

Went to Sunday’s PawSox vs. Gwinnett Braves game. And no Ted Bates, former season ticket holder and Atlanta Braves fan (no one’s perfect). A pitcher’s duel between Hector Velasquez and Gwinnett’s Sean Newcomb. Velasquez had a no hitter until leaving after 6. While he only had thrown 55 pitches, the radio guys pointed out that Velasquez hadn’t pitched in 10 days. And there was a 21 minute rain delay before the 5th. Another concern - Velasquez pitched over 240 innings last year in Mexico. Edgar Olmos came on and gave up a hit on his very first pitch to Ozzie Albies. No ‘No No’.

The only hit by the PawSox was a blooper down the right field line by Sam Travis. If not, the PawSox would have been no hit into the 9th. With 2 out in that inning, Steve Selsky had a line drive hit. Bryce Brentz then blasted one to left center just out of the reach of Mel Rojas, Jr. for a 2-run walk off homer. It was off of Caleb Dirks. Robbie Ross Jr, who walked a man in the 9th but shut down the Braves, was the winner.

Early in the game, 3B Matt Dominguez made a great diving stop and throw out of Albies to preserve the no hitter. But in the 8th with one out and 2 on, Dominguez pulled a rock. He was on 3rd when Deven Marrero hit a ball to the 2B who was playing in. The throw beat Dominguez who stopped running. The ball was dropped by the catcher, Dominguez would have scored had he kept running. Instead he was tagged out.

In an oddity, there was much cheering for the Braves. It’s because Gwinnett’s Sean Newcomb is from Brockton and had many of his supporters in the crowd. One of the few times I can recall fans for the opposition making that much noise.

The Patriots crack me up. They always do the unexpected. This year they loaded up on talent beforehand using draft picks to get a speedy WR (Cooks), a TE (Allen), a DL (Ealy), a RB they stole from the Bills (Gillislee) with a poison pill contract. Oh and they started by signing free agent Stephen Gilmore, a shut down corner and another free agent RB Burkhead. Then their four draft picks went DE, OT, DE, OT. Know what their needs were? Now you know. And they used a draft pick to get a KC TE (O’Shaughnessy). As a Pats fan, these moves make me smile. A 6th would be spectacular. I loved getting DE Deatrich Wise who played with Trey Flowers at Arkansas.

It was heartening to hear that 70,000+ fans in Philly for the NFL draft booed Roger Goodell every time he went to the podium. The railroad job he did on Tom Brady and the Patriots, for whatever reason (appeasing some owners who hate the Patriots?) is deserving of this and much more. I picture a town square with Goodell in stocks and fans fishing thru barrels of rotten fruit and vegetables, ripe for throwing at him.

NFL VP of PR Greg Aiello defended Goodell. The twitter list included someone calling Aiello a ‘squid’ and another noting of Goodell: He's the reason he gets booed.’

Congratulations to the Providence Bruins, who came from being down 2 to 1 to Scranton in a 5-game series, eliminating the Penguins Sunday. Hershey next (best of 7).

ESPN showed the Cubs-Red Sox game Sunday. Analyst Jessica Mendoza interviewed Cubs’ SS Addison Russell. The segment however was shown during the game, reducing the game picture for the video ‘chat’. This was a stupid decision since the interview was too long and too meaningless while two excellent teams were in the rubber game match.

Wow! 19 of 39 threes by Boston in Game #1 vs. the Wizards. The Celts were the ones that were the wizards. Go Green! Oh and a smile to Paul Pierce who just hung ’em up.

So the Red Sox took two out of three against the World Champion Chicago Cubs. They might have swept if skipper John Farrell had taken the struggling Steven Wright out after 6. And did he take Wright out after Montero homered to tie the game? Nooooo, he left him in for two more batters until Jay doubled. Farrell spewed some dribble about a short bullpen. He ended up using Scott, Taylor and Abad anyway after the horses left the barn. They needed 7th and 8th holds to get to Kimbrel.

The Cubs and BoSox ended April with the same record 13-11.

Cubs manager Joe Maddon called Andrew Benintendi (2 HRs in 3 games) ‘Freddy Lynn reincarnated’. Whoa, Nelly!

There is hope for LHPs Henry Owens and Brian Johnson in Pawtucket. Owens has stopped walking the side and is getting later into games with better mechanics. Johnson is pitching better, overcoming getting hit again on a comebacker.

The Red Sox picked up INF/OF Chase d’Arnaud (6 year career .231, 1 HR and 28 RBI) off waivers from Atlanta. I would have said they got the wrong d’Arnaud, but his brother Travis, who plays for the Mets, is a catcher. Travis is a 5 year career .244 but with 34 HRs and 118 RBI.

Showing no one is perfect: Alex Speier of the 108 Stitches blog had Anthony Rendon (6 for 6, 3 HRs, 10 RBI) leading the Nationals...over the Nationals.

Friend and fraternity brother Ken Forestal emailed me about his son Justyn’s wife Kate who has a relative that may have historical baseball significance. Kate’s great great grandfather Russ McKelvey ( has it McKelvy) reportedly hit the first grand slam ever hit in the majors on June 1, 1878 for Indianapolis. A UPI clipping was included that stated such. Reportedly CF/RHP McKelvy was the highest paid player on his team ($1500 a season and a promise of off-season employment). McKelvy played one full season and a little more, then moved to Omaha, Nebraska and became a farmer.
Wikipedia notes McKelvy did hit the first ever home run on June 1, 1878 for the Indianapolis Blues, but it was a 2-run inside-the-park home run. Still, Ken’s son Justyn’s and wife Kate’s daughter Frankee B comes from baseball royalty. Right, Grandpa Ken?

Re Last Issue’s Music Quiz: Jim, nice work as always! This quiz questions feels like hitting a beach's got to be Frank Zappa. Cheers, Tom Robinson
Tom, good guess but No. - Z
Jim-been out of touch-been in Fla.-back home now-Elvis Costello-For singing Allison rather than Veronica I believe. KenForestal
Kenny, yes it's Elvis Costello. First 3 albums all in Rolling Stone's top 500. Damn good. - Z
Elvis Costello? The TheWizard Yes, Wiz, it's Elvis Costello whom I will see in July at PPAC. Z
howdy jim,  i'm guessing the answer to your quiz is my old new wave fav, Elvis Costello. BobbySisto The Sisto Kid! You are correct. It is Elvis Costello. I have tickets to see Elvis and his band July 25 at PPAC.

The Herbster was in the HC wearing a Tesla pullover. So I asked him about it, and he said that he put down $1000 to reserve a Tesla S when they come out. Herb’s son-in-law has a 2012 Tesla and when he got into a fender bender, an online computer notified Tesla. A truck was sent out to get the dented Tesla and provide a Tesla to drive in its stead. Herb says the car has a 275 mile range, but you need to charge it by 257. Charging is free (except at home). The computer tells you where the nearest charging station is. I told Herb that my daughter Cara asked me to guess what kind of car she wanted and I said a Tesla S. Yup! I’d be interested in it too.
Someone mentioned Caitlyn Jenner. Mark, Captain Jack’s friend, said that he saw Bruce Jenner win the Decathlon at the Montreal Olympics in 1976. We all just shook our heads. I said, “It’s a complex world.”
On entering the HC, I encountered Mike Module and Fleet Feet Pete. As I greeted them, I said, “They let anybody in here.” Mike responded, “Yeah, we told them you were OK.”
So who was it that had his first 3 albums in Rolling Stone’s Top 500 and once was banned from SNL? Why Elvis Costello (Declan MacManus) who did odd jobs before striking it big with the Attractions and LP’s My Aim is True (1977), This Year’s Model (’78) and Armed Forces (’79). Elvis and the band were banned from SNL when instead of doing Less Than Zero, he switched to Radio, Radio, a song critical of the commercialization of the air waves.
MacManus took his stage name originally in honor of his father Ross, a musician and band leader who played under the name Day Costello. Declan was D.P. Costello until changing it to Elvis Costello at the suggestion of his manager Jake Riviera at Stiff Records (‘if it ain’t stiff, it ain’t worth a f**k.’). (Source - Wikipedia)

A slight switch – this song has sold 30 million copies. It has been a summer staple ever since. The name of the group doing it sounds like a person but isn’t. Not only did the song go to #1 in the UK but it was #1 in 26 countries. Name of the song and band?


Post a Comment

<< Home