The baseball season made up of duct tape and used chewing gum continued to roll on. The Cardinals and Tigers series this week was postponed, while the infected Cardinals were rented cars to drive themselves from Milwaukee back to St. Louis. No word on whether the doors on said cars were controlled remotely to keep the Cardinals players from exiting to marvel at the tall buildings of Chicago.
Another side product of trying to cram a rabbit-sized baseball season through a mouse-sized hole is pitcher injuries. The playoff teams might have pitching staffs constructed entirely out of three-card monte dealers and truck drivers on a break. Mike Siroka blew out his Achilles, and Carlos Rodon and Shohei Ohtani look set to miss weeks with arm troubles that became apparent after major drops in velocity. Some 36 starting pitchers are currently listed on the IL, with only a handful due to actual COVID-19. The Pirates alone walked three pitchers off the mound this past weekend to the IL to be put down. WIth the Pirates, it’s hard to tell whether it even matters.
What’s become clear is that Rob Manfred and the rest of the MLB powers that be only care about getting some form of the league to the playoffs. It doesn’t matter if some teams play 25 games, or if they’re running out rescue dogs as relievers, as long as they can put on something they can call a postseason tournament. It doesn’t even matter if every baseball fan considers that tournament a complete joke, which it will be if we can even get there. They’ll get their money either way. So baseball will continue to act like Michael Palin’s pet shopkeeper commenting on the parrot’s wonderful plumage while the fans’ and media’s John Cleese keep explaining that the parrot is dead.
- The Lakers clinched the top seed in the West, which will give them...the ability to choose their jerseys for the entirety of the West’s playoffs? Wouldn’t seem to be much home court advantage when everyone is in the same place. Maybe they get a few more screens for their fans on the video board? Attempts to get Jack Nicholson up there proved futile when no one actually wanted to step foot in his house and every camera already there was covered in unfortunate substances. You know Jack owns a lot of robes you don’t want to see him in and you know that’s all he wears within the confines of his home.
- In the other bubble, the NHL actually jumped on the Black Lives Matter train when Ryan Reaves, Robin Lehner, Jason Dickinson, and Tyler Seguin kneeled for both national anthems before the Stars-Knights game.
The real shock here is Lehner, who last season was wearing a mask with Donald Trump logos on it and even just a few weeks ago at least had the look of trying to undermine Akim Aliu’s article in The Players Tribune (Lehner claimed it did not) that documented the horrors Black players can face in the world of hockey. Lehner walked all of it back after the game, saying his mind had been changed. A journey of 1,000 miles…
Elsewhere in the NHL pods, it was a day of stars as Andrei Svhechnikov and Connor McDavid each had hat tricks, the former granting the Hurricanes a 2-0 series lead and the latter evening up the Oilers with the Hawks. Sidney Crosby scored the first goal for the Penguins in their win over the Canadiens to even up that series. The Jets were able to put aside their conspiracy theories and whining long enough to even the Flames at one game a piece.
Hey look, it’s almost like we have an honest to goodness sports rundown again!