The Blue Jays' Sign-Stealing Operation Is A Lot Less Sophisticated On The Road

Your morning roundup for Aug. 19, the day we went fishing and caught a scuba diver instead. H/T to Jamo for the photo, which he got from a friend at the Jays-A's game who texted him to say: "Guy looks into binoculars for five seconds then holds up sign that says either 'OFF SPEED' or 'FAST BALL.' Security shut him down after one inning." Got any stories or photos for us? Tip your editors.

The Blue Jays' Sign-Stealing Operation Is A Lot Less Sophisticated On The Road

What we watched: Let there be no questioning Bill Belichick's genius, for even when he leaves Danny Woodhead in on punt coverage in the fourth quarter of a blowout in a preseason game, he's still smarter than anyone who ever wore a headset. Even when Woodhead nearly gets decapitated.

Woodhead said after the game that he feels fine, and Belichick said something similar. Look, we know that, at least from the players' and coaches' perspective, there's a purpose to playing games that don't count against another team before the games actually do start to count. But why put a guy whose roster spot is not in question out there in a situation like that? Whatever. Hoodie knows best.

Elsewhere

They're not gonna take it anymore: "Chinese athletes, once dutiful ambassadors who obediently spent their lives in pursuit of patriotic glory, are no longer willing to just grin and bear it. A series of recent controversies is shedding light on how young athletes are beginning to expose abuse, challenge exploitation and reject official interference in their careers-risky moves in a country where there is no separation of sport and state. Their struggle is a microcosm of the clash in contemporary China between the push for personal liberty and the grip of an authoritarian government." [New York Times]

Of course, of course: "Oregon quarterback Darron Thomas said he was asleep in the car when teammate Cliff Harris was pushing the speed up to 118 miles an hour on I-5 near Albany in the wee hours of June 12th. He woke up suddenly, he said 'with the police at the window.' In a video taken by state trooper Ray Stallsworth's patrol car, Stallsworth can be heard questioning Harris about the smell of marijuana coming from inside the car. Harris responds: 'We smoked it all.' Thomas said he neither smoked marijuana in the car nor saw it smoked. 'Not at all,' he said." [The Oregonian]

Well, it's something: "Kobe Bryant insisted on giving some of the team's playoff bonus to two members of the Lakers' video department whose contracts were not renewed after the season. Chris Bodaken and Patrick O'Keefe split about $65,000 of the Lakers' playoff bonus. Bodaken started with the Lakers as a ball boy in 1986 and spent the last 10 seasons as their director of video services. O'Keefe was the Lakers' video coordinator for six seasons. They both hope to be re-hired by the team when the NBA lockout ends. For now, they are thankful for Bryant's financial gesture." [Los Angeles Times]

Your record-setting apple-biting-while-juggling interlude:

Looks like China's out: "The Chinese Basketball Association will restrict contracted NBA players from playing for domestic teams in the event the season is canceled, but will still allow free agents, state media reported Friday. The CBA would bar players under contract such as Kobe Bryant, Carmelo Anthony and Chris Paul. They and others had expressed interest in playing in China if the NBA lockout drags on and results in the cancellation of all or part of the 2011-12 season. [ESPN]

Bryce Harper might be done: "#Nats official said unless Harper looks ready to play in next couple days, he'll probably be shut down for season." [@MarkZuckerman]

We are all Dave McKenna CXCVI: Here's your daily link to Dave McKenna's brilliant "The Cranky Redskins Fan's Guide to Dan Snyder," which we'll be posting until Snyder's dumbass libel lawsuit winds up in a puddle of piss.

Merch: Managing editor Tom Scocca and contributing editor Drew Magary have both written books. You can buy Scocca's Beijing Welcomes You: Unveiling the Capital City of the Future here, and Magary's The Postmortal here. Now do it.