Scoring a birdie in baseball

On July 5, Minor League Baseball’s Class-A Fort Wayne TinCaps (Padres affiliate) met the West Michigan Whitecaps (Tigers affiliate) at Parkview Field in Fort Wayne, Ind. A bird is hit by a pitch. It did not take first base. And it was not OK when it was taken off the field. It was dead.

But at least it didn’t explode. Which did happen in one game, as the announcers explain. Actually, let’s go to the videotape:

Yoenis Cespedes has a cannon for an arm: Day 2

You saw the previous post where Yoenis Cespedes of the Oakland A’s throws out a California Angel after botching a play in the outfield.

He did it again the next day:

Here’s the odd thing. If he makes a clean play, the runners would have been in excellent scoring position. But he muffs plays he should easily make twice. The runners go, and he nails them with amazing throws.

The ESPN test

I have a relative who used to work for ESPN in a pretty high profile position. Let’s just say there were times I’d be away from home and I’d glance up at a television screen and, “Wow. My relative is on ‘Sportscenter.’”

In all our conversations about getting a job and working at ESPN, the subject of an entry test never came up.

But today, I see on Deadspin that ESPN tests its new employees. If you’re thinking about working there some day, here’s what you have to answer in 45 minutes. Think fast!

Ground rule parenting and spring training

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Now this is a dilemma. As a parent, do you go for the ground rule double, or do you keep your hand on the kid’s wagon?

OK, it’s spring training, and it’s just the Mets against the Marilins.

But isn’t the answer obvious?

You go for the ball! I have to paraphrase Tom Hanks in “A League of Their Own”: There’s no stroller in baseball!

The kid in this clip has a baseball cap and glove. He should have been out of the wagon waiting to catch balls coming over the fence. I think back to when my kid was that age, and I was a member of my company’s softball team. On game day, my son was standing in the outfield right beside me, no wagon, no stroller. (Until, of course, he had to stand by himself when I had to run to catch a fly ball.) This went of for years until he grew enough to play with the team.

The kid in this video has a long way to go.

What makes it worse is mom was there. She’s never going to let dad live this down, but notice she doesn’t have the other kid in the wagon. That’s the way it should be.

Mariano Rivera: Pride of the Yankees

I can’t believe it. Mariano Rivera won’t be coming in to save the Yankees anymore. And I missed his last game at Yankee Stadium (which sucks, by the way).

Here’s his last appearance on the mound in New York on Sept. 26 (If this video link works correctly, there are multiple clips here):

Pretty cool letting Andy Pettitte and Derek Jeter take the ball from him. Pretty sad that Pettitte is retiring from the game as well. His last pitch was thrown Saturday in Texas. And really, Jeter doesn’t have that much longer to play.

One other note of historic significance: Rivera will be the last player in Major League Baseball to wear the number 42. That number has been retired in honor of Jackie Robinson, whose family was in Yankee Stadium for a tribute to Mariano.

This is one of those instances when you think, “Why wait. Just put him in the Hall of Fame now.”

On the rebound: 2013 Louisville Cardinals

Another look back at the 2013 NCAA basketball final. I still have confetti I collected at the end of the game in the Georgia Dome. Can’t wait for next season, but there are high hopes for the football team this year, already off to a 4-0 start. (Unfortunately, didn’t get any confetti at the Sugar Bowl in New Orleans last January.)