29 June 2011: Sounds like …

OK, I may be way off base here (pun intended), but I’ve been listening to Aaron Boone’s commentary on ESPN’s Monday Night Baseball for a while now, and I have come to the conclusion that his voice sounds very similar to Tony Gwynn’s. In fact, nearly every time I hear him in the booth, I think it is Gwynn and have to remind myself, no, that’s Aaron Boone. Now, before you start saying, “No way,” the two do not have exact voices, but they do seem remarkably similar, especially when you hear only the voice. Hear for yourself and comment on your own verdict. Here’s a clip of Gwynn at a hitting camp. And here’s a clip of Boone being interviewed about his game-winning homer as a Yankee in the 2003 ALCS. What do you think? Like I said, not exact, but similar, right?

It’s not often you can work weed, tattoos and Ohio State football into the same sentence, so this may be my only shot.  An Ohio tattoo shop owner/marijuana dealer is in big trouble. No, not for the tattoos and, well, yeah, for the marijuana thing (which includes money laundering, natch. You can’t be having your cash smelling like weed, right?), but a more heinous crime (at least in the eyes of Buckeye Nation). Shop owner Edward Rife also bought sports memorabilia from some OSU players and/or gave them discounts on tattoos for the purchases. Turns out Rife got the double whammy — the memorabilia revelation led to the NCAA investigation that ultimately cost Jim Tressel his job AND Rife was convicted of drug trafficking and money laundering. Full story here: http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2011/football/ncaa/06/28/ohio-state-tattoo-parlor-owner.ap/index.html?sct=hp_t2_a18&eref=sihp

The University of South Carolina won its second straight College World Series yesterday with a win over Florida. Congratulations, Gamecocks. It was good to see an SEC v. SEC matchup, but my animosity toward Florida football bleeds over into any athletic endeavor undertaken by the university in Gainesville.

From the OK, Whatever Dept.:  North Korea claims that the reason its women’s soccer team collapsed against Team USA this week had nothing to do with the youth and inexperience of the team.  Or the skill of the American team.  No, the Koreans claim the reason for the 2-0 was … lightning striking the team.  Not a member of the team.  The team.  Goalie.  Defenders.  Oh, and some midfielders, too.  Probably the coach.  The trainer got a little singed.  The whole freakin’ team!  They went to the hospital! It’s a miracle they could even take the field.  Riiiiight.  It’s a miracle they don’t get laughed off the field after that excuse.  But, does that make that match a (snicker) lightning round?  Story here: NKorea vs. USA

And while we’re on the subject of soccer (but not for long, I promise), the USA women’s team’s new unis have come under fire for being, in a word, ugly.  According to one critic, the ” … USWNT shirt can always be distinguished from the USMNT shirt by the two stars that the women’s shirt prominently displays over the USSF badge – one star for each World Cup trophy they’ve won (1991, 1999). That difference is not enough for Nike and the USSF. They want you to know, for sure, that this is a not a man’s shirt. So the FIFA #1 ranked women’s team will go to Germany in a nurse’s uniform.”  Furthermore, Nike weighed in with this: “The kit is designed specifically for the female athlete, to enhance the range of motion and create a uniquely feminine silhouette.” Nike went on to say that the black away uni was “inspired by the beautiful but deadly Black Widow spider.”

I don’t know, I kinda like the “Black Widow Nurse” concept. Quentin Tarantino could make a movie trilogy out of that one.  Judge for yourself.

Today’s Birthdays:
Former NFL player/Annoying sportscaster Dan Dierdorf (62)
LA Dodgers pitching coach Rick Honeycutt (56)
Former Dodger star/confused cocaine customer Pedro Guerrero (55)

28 June 2011: Back to the weirdness…

After a long hiatus, I’m going to give this blog another shot. Mainly because I have more time these days (no, I did not get fired) and because in the world of sports there is no shortage of the comical, the absurd and the just plain weird.

Speaking of the latter — and this is the real reason I re-started this blog. Last night in San Diego, two remarkable things happened at Petco Park: (1) the Padres did not take the field in their atrocious (and over-worn) “military appreciation” jerseys, and (2) a Cirque du Soleil performer threw out the first pitch.  Sort of.

Ok, props up front. Dude threw a strike. After flipping and twisting through the air. I don’t know the technical name for the maneuver, but I call it Damn Difficult.

Still, the Cirque du Soleil? Really? Anybody else a little creeped out by this eerie, otherwordly troupe? Maybe it’s the association with clowns. Or the acrobats. Or something. But whenever I watch the performances, I’m somewhere between fascinated and trying to keep my skin from crawling.

My daughter, the die-hard Cardinals fan, is going to kill me for this one, but I loved the creativity too much to let it go by unnoticed. Via Vimeo, a  hilarious mash-up of Edwin Encarncion’s 9th inning HR and “The Natural.” Baseball translates in any generation.

 

I love Jim Leyland. Great manager. Great people skills. Inspiring leader. Vast vocabulary. What’s hilarious about this clip is the reactions — or lack thereof — by his player and base coach. “No, no, Skip, you got this one.”

 

 

Finally, today’s birthday wishes go to John Elway.