This Evening: The Nationals' Rookies, Hazed To Dress As Smurfs, With Stephen Strasburg As Papa Smurf

Your p.m. roundup for Sept.12, the day Shirley the orangutan quit smoking. Photo courtesy @JesusFloresN26, via Larry Brown Sports. Got any stories or photos for us? Tip your editors.

This Evening: The Nationals' Rookies, Hazed To Dress As Smurfs, With Stephen Strasburg As Papa Smurf

What we're watching (all times EDT, unless noted): Monday Night Football kicks off with a doubleheader on ESPN that features Patriots-Dolphins at 7 and Raiders-Broncos at 10:30. Baseball-wise, MLB Network has either Tigers-White Sox or Phillies-Astros, with both beginning at 8.

Read Me

Emeritus asks when a gay athlete will come out: "Whatever your reaction to Reynolds's tweets, it is worth noting that this is not an obscure opinion for the country at large. Polls show that 46 percent of the population agrees with him. Reynolds did not write that gays are an abomination. He just said he was personally against gay marriage. You and I might disagree with him, but his opinion does not make him crazy, or even fringe. He also said it in the context of sports, perhaps the last bastion of homophobia in American society, even more so than the military. Reynolds surely felt he was speaking to an audience sympathetic to his views, that what he was saying wasn't even controversial at all. He was wrong. The backlash against Reynolds was immediate, not just on ­Twitter but within the hockey world. ­Reynolds's agent colleagues came out strongly against his stance, and when Reynolds refused to stand down, the ­agency began to lose clients, including then–Minnesota Wild free agent Andrew ­Brunette (Brunette denies he left because of Reynolds's tweets). A week later, a Canadian sports anchor defended Reynolds. 'I completely and wholeheartedly support Todd ­Reynolds and his support for the traditional and TRUE meaning of marriage.' The next day, his station fired him. This is sports in the year 2011. It took decades for the sports world to catch up to the rest of us, but now that it's closing the gap, it's doing so extremely fast. [NY Mag]

This Date In Deadspin History

Sept. 12, 2007: Will This Be Belichick's Watergate?

Things You Might Have Missed Today

Some quick links to a few items we posted earlier:
We've Found The Unluckiest Soccer Team In The World: Off The Woodwork 3 Times In 3 Seconds
Ines Sainz Wanted Everyone To Know She Was At The Jets Game Last Night
Clydesdales Genuflecting Toward Lower Manhattan, And Other 9/11 Inanities
MLB Physically Took FDNY And NYP Caps From The Mets To Keep Them From Wearing Them Last Night
The NFL Goes Out Of Its Way To Make People Look Stupid

Elsewhere

This is good news: "Gophers football coach Jerry Kill, who suffered a seizure with 20 seconds remaining in Saturday's home opener at TCF Bank Stadium, is likely to coach the team in its next game, team physician Pat Smith said Monday. Smith said during a news conference that Kill remains hospitalized, awaiting the results of tests. But Smith said he expects Kill to be released soon. 'Sooner than later,' Smith said. Kill has a history of seizures, suffering previous seizures during games in 2001 and 2005. He also had a seizure taping a 2006 television show and has had several seizures at home, according to his brother, Frank Kill." [Minneapolis Star-Tribune]

More bad news for the Chiefs: "The loss of Eric Berry for the entire 2011 Kansas City Chiefs is an incredible blow to the team. I don't think I'm overreacting here. This is a major, major loss for the Chiefs. Todd Haley and the Chiefs are going to give us the 'Next man up' speech and, while that's true, it doesn't fully recognize how important Berry was to the Chiefs. Earlier this summer, the KC Star reported on a few playing time stats for the Chiefs and the headline was this one: Out of the Chiefs 1,065 defensive snaps last year, Berry was on the field for every one." [Arrowhead Pride]

That said, Steve Johnson doesn't think he did anything wrong: "@Mr_Hoosier man shutup U clown ILL NEVER CHEAPSHOT A PLAYER ON THE FIELD! IDC if he my Enemy U Square! Last I checked a cut block was legal!" [Twitter]

Does this mean they're tanking the season?: "The Colts say vice chairman Bill Polian spent Saturday watching quarterback Andrew Luck lead Stanford to a win at Duke. His presence led to speculation that the Colts are already looking at next year's NFL draft after losing Peyton Manning, who is out while he recovers from neck surgery. Indianapolis opened the season with veteran Kerry Collins and was blown out by Houston, 34-7." [AP]

Your Spanish Hand Cream Commercial (And North By Northwest Parody) Interlude:

Jordan fined: "The NBA fined Michael Jordan $100,000 for public comments he made last month about the lockout and one of the league's players, according to sources with knowledge of the situation. NBA spokesman Tim Frank confirmed that Jordan had been fined, but said the league would not comment on the total. In an Aug. 19 interview with The Herald Sun, a newspaper in Australia, the Charlotte Bobcats owner spoke extensively about the need for revenue sharing and mentioned Milwaukee Bucks' Australian center Andrew Bogut." [ESPN]

Wanna bet? No, really: We're partnering with the crew at WhoBet, where we'll place bets with you in this space from time to time. There's no real money involved, but you might want to participate anyway, just for fun. The next bet, which we'll be repeating here today for the last time, is below. Check it out.

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.

Send stories, photos, and anything else you might have to tips@deadspin.com.