ROME IS BURNINGFlorida marlins owner Jeffrey Loria is a pretty superstitious guy and wasn't about to take any chances during the team's recent 9-game winning streak. He'd sit in the same seat, talk to the same usher, while eating the same mints and go to the same gas station every day. Plus, he would always finish his bottle of water by the 7th inning. Look, it works, right? Well, it's the mints, bottled water and gas station or the fact that he has four pitchers named Willis, Beckett, Pavano and Burnett. One or the other. For some strange reason, I think Josh Beckett is still one of the best young pitchers in baseball regardless of whether or not Loria kills his bottle of water on time. Leave that nonsense to the players, Jeff.
Taking nothing from Albert Pujols, Scott Rolen and Jim Edmonds of the St. Louis cardinals or Adrian Beltre of the Los Angeles Dodgers, but Barry Bonds is hands down the NL MVP. Take any of those three off St. Louis and they're still a playoff team. Take Bonds away from Frisco and they're no longer a major league team. And he's again putting up absolutely ridiculous numbers with almost no protection in the lineup. Baseball is the one sport with a single individual isn't supposed to be able to carry an entire team. But this guy does. The opposing manager has to always be thinking: where's Barry? When's he coming up again? What are we going to do with him? No one else dead or alive was ever afforded that level of respect. He's your MVP. And he's getting it at age 40. This is one ridiculous cat.
The most ridiculous moment of the baseball season occurred last weekend in Phoenix when the Arizona Diamondbacks refused to pitch to Barry Bonds with the score 5-0, in the 7th and no one on. This after interim manager Al Pedrique said that he didn't want Bonds hitting any milestone bombs in his yard.
That is garbage. Absolutely indefensible. Look, if there's a tactical or strategic reason to walk him, then go ahead. But there wasn't. I'm not saying you groove him fastballs or put it on tee for him, but in a five run game with no one on, go after the man. Try to get him out. Another reason the D-backs are basically a double-A team.
Fan apathy for the NHL is at an all time high, TV ratings are dropping, other lesser sports have blown right by it in this country, the NFL is underway, the college football season is shaping up and MLB playoffs are about to begin. So what's the NHL's response to all this? A lockout, prolonged work stoppage and possible cancellation for the regular season and Stanley Cup playoffs. Brilliant marketing strategy fellas. The sport is already bordering on irrelevant and on life support here. In this country, it ranks somewhere between bowling, the WNBA, slamball, extreme dodgeball and barrel jumping. Right about now, the NHL aspires to be women's soccer. Major League Baseball might be able to survive a long work stoppage, the NHL won't. Nice knowing you. Rest in peace.
Rising, former NBA'er Jayson Williams. Fresh off beating that manslaughter rap in New Jersey, the former baller and limo driver gunner may be ready for another run at the NBA. He has been running with other NBA players and reportedly is trying to get back in NBA shape. Look, I'm all for it. Anything that prevents him from rolling with the trotters, shot gunning Dwayne Schnitizius' dog and blowing gigantic holes in the chests of innocent limo drivers is a good thing, I guess. But just a question. You got away with killing a guy. Shouldn't that be good enough? Do you really need to come back and remind us of that fact 80 times a year or until you get hurt again.
Falling, Toronto Raptor's star Morris Peterson. I'm a Mo Pete guy so I hope that this next story isn't true. A school teacher and part time model says Mo Pete gave her genital herpes and is suing him for $1m bones and an additional $500k for "special damages." Is that what they're calling genital herpes now, "special damages." Last I checked, there was nothing special about genital herpes. Mo Pete denies the allegations. Man. I hope this isn't true. I mean, is there a more horrifying phrase than 'genital herpes'? Not in the NBA there's not. I mean, it's one thing if you're accused of something silly and insignificant like fathering a kid. That's just a kid. But we're talking about genital herpes. That lasts forever. You can just scratch a check for a kid. But herpes is for life. Say it ain't so Mo. Say it ain't so.
Falling, the Stanford band. These knuckleheads are at it again. They think they're funny but they're not. Just marching at halftime and blowing on their trombones isn't enough for these mensas. No, they have to turn every performance into an evening at the Improv as well. A few years back they mocked the potato famine in Ireland during a game with Notre Dame. Hey, what's not funny about people starving to death? Then this past weekend, they busted out with five dancers wearing wedding veils at halftime of their game with BYU. Polygamy smack. Very fresh. And what's not funny about clowning someone for their religion? Well, besides everything. The last person who should be clowning anyone for any reason is someone in the band. You go to Stanford. I thought you had to be smart to get in there.
Falling, Britney Spears. Her mother Lynne, says she's had about enough of the media portraying her daughter as trashy. Yep, as always, blame the media for your daughter's shortcomings. It was the media's fault that your precious little Brit jammed her tongue half way down Madonna's esophagus, right?. It was the media's fault that your daughter got married in a drunken haze in Las Vegas. It's the media's fault that she keeps showing on the cover of mags half naked. You know why the media portrays your daughter as a skank? Because she's a skank. That's why. Nice try mom. Instead of smacking the press, tell your daughter to put some clothes on. If it looks like a duck, walks like a duck and quacks like a duck, then Britney's a skank.