Saturday, September 13, 2014

Ridiculous photo of the day nominee

This was taken at the Martha's Vineyard fair a few weeks ago:

Since there isn't anyone standing by the sign, it must mean one of two things: Either all of the missing people have been claimed already, or there are so many of them that they are kept in the back somewhere and this lady is looking over a list of names to see if whoever she lost is one of the lucky ones who've been found.

It looks like the guy in the middle behind the fan may be on the radio with the people in the back to confirm if the lady's missing person is actually there.

RELATED: Ironic photo of the day nominee

Friday, September 12, 2014

Orioles to honor Derek Jeter's 'last day game in Baltimore on a Friday' today

The Orioles plan to hold a small ceremony before today's 1:05 pm start time as part the Derek Jeter Retirement Road Show.  Jeter will be honored this afternoon because it will be the last time he suits up for a day game in Baltimore on a Friday.  Upon learning of the Orioles intentions, Jeter said:

"Yeah, it's pretty nice of them to commemorate this occasion, I mean it is the last time I'll get to take the field in this city in the daylight.  Although to be honest, this is exactly the kind of stuff I expected to happen when I announced my retirement eight months ahead of time."

When informed that the O's and Yankees are scheduled for another 1:05 pm contest on Saturday, and that today's festivities were only because it was his last Friday afternoon game in Baltimore, Jeter responded: "Sweet, another party tomorrow!"

For fans who'd like to stick around after the game, the Orioles have announced there will be a brief parade outside the ballpark to celebrate Jeter's last doubleheader ever in Baltimore.

However, those who have tickets for this evening's 7:05 pm matchup are urged not to arrive early for the parade, as they will have their own mini carnival to attend on the field after the third inning in celebration of Jeter's final Friday night game at Camden Yards.

My stab at impersonating a sports headline from "The Onion"
Should athletes really get to celebrate their retirement for an entire season?
What's the greatest way for an athlete to retire?

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Smirnoff Ice 'Watermelon Mimosa' looks quite tasty, why am I just learning of it?

I saw this commercial last night for the first time:

And here was my instantaneous reaction:

Why am I only hearing of this now?  Why didn't Smirnoff shove this ad down my throat back in springtime when they were making me laugh with "deconstructed martinis"?  I could care less about the "Screwdriver" and "Peach Bellini" versions, but something about the look of that watermelon just gets me.

Is it too late?  Is there any chance "Watermelon Mimosa" is still in liquor stores alongside the endless aisles of premature pumpkin stuff?  Summer doesn't officially end until September 23, so by all accounts I should still have two more weekends to go to the beach and drink this.

Also, I'm a big fan of the 5.8% alcohol by volume; that's IPA or ice beer level.

RELATED: I may have to buy Harpoon's entire stock of grapefruit beer

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

It's kind of dumb that minor league baseball has playoffs (as illustrated by Rusney Castillo)

I get why they are a necessary occurrence.  It's how sports works, and you need to have some sort of meaningful conclusion to the season.  However, MLB's September 1 roster expansion (from 25 to 40) makes the minor league playoffs a bit of a joke.  This year's Triple-A postseason began on September 3, two days after many clubs had just been pillaged of their best players.  What's the point of determining a champion among teams that aren't even using the same guys they did all season?

Nothing brings to light the flaw of holding minor league playoffs quite like the path of Rusney Castillo.  The Red Sox signed the Cuban outfielder (who by all accounts is already a major league quality player, possibly even a star) on August 22.

Castillo played his first professional game in the U.S. on August 31, for the Rookie ball Gulf Coast League Red Sox.  It was the second matchup of a best of three playoff series against the GCL Yankees for the league title.  With Castillo in the lineup the GCL Sox lost that day, but won the next game to capture the championship.

The GCL season now over, Castillo joined the Double-A Portland Sea Dogs for Game 1 of their opening-round Eastern League playoff tilt with the Binghampton Mets.  He played in four of the five contests, with the Sea Dogs dropping the series 3-2.

With no more Double-A games to play, Castillo moved up to Triple-A Pawtucket last night for Game 1 of the International League finals (known as the Governors' Cup) vs the Durham Bulls.  He went 1-for-4 in a 3-2 Paw Sox victory, and could well end up leading them to a league championship.  Win or lose, when Pawtucket's season is over Castillo will likely join the Red Sox.

Castillo is 7-for-23 (.304) in seven career minor league appearances, none of which came in the regular season.  He's taken part in the postseason of three different leagues.  If that doesn't bring the integrity of minor league playoffs into question, what does?

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Would social media have forced the Ravens to cut Ray Lewis back in 2000?

On ESPN's Monday Night Countdown show yesterday, Suzy Kolber suggested to Ray Lewis that people would try to draw comparisons between the Ravens cutting Ray Rice, but standing behind Lewis during his trial 14 years ago.  For anybody who doesn't remember, a pair of murder charges against Lewis were eventually dropped in exchange for him pleading guilty to obstruction of justice and testifying against two people who were with him on the night of a double homicide in Atlanta in January of 2000 (here's a link to a detailed description of the events).

Lewis responded to Kolber's question by saying "There's no comparison...It's night and day of anything we've ever been through...both situations are totally different."  I assume a large portion of people watching thought it was a ridiculous response from Lewis.  I'd expect a significant number of fans (including myself) think Lewis actually is guilty of murder.

However, I do in fact agree with Lewis' remarks about the situations he and Rice have each been through being "night and day"--in 2000 Lewis didn't have to worry about the impact of social media.

When the video of Rice striking his fiancee got out early Monday morning (and I'm not even going to bother discussing the internet's role in that), the outraged responses on Twitter and Facebook were everywhere.

There's no doubt that seeing these reactions from the public played a huge role in Baltimore's decision to let Rice go.  For anyone qestioning the impact of Twitter, the Ravens even chose to use it as the platform to announce Rice's release.

Last summer when word began to break of the impending charges against Aaron Hernandez, the Patriots immediately cut him to minimize their publicity nightmare as much as possible.

Now imagine the Lewis murder trial from the summer of 2000 happening today.  The constant backlash on the internet in response to the Ravens' support of Lewis would be overwhelming.  It seems next to impossible that he could manage to stay on the team; even the resulting obstruction of justice verdict would likely be enough to get him cut on it's own.

Just last week Baltimore unveiled a statue of Lewis outside of M&T Bank Stadium, and team owner Steve Bisciotti called him "the greatest linebacker of all time."  Luckily for Lewis he played in an era where people didn't spend half their day looking at their smart phones.  That's the only reason you can't compare Rice's situation to his.

Monday, September 8, 2014

Ridiculously improbable U.S. Open final tonight

Defending U.S. Open champion Rafael Nadal (ranked No. 2 in the world) pulled out of the tournament a week before it started due to a wrist injury.  World No. 1 Novak Djokovic lost in one semifinal to 10th seeded Kei Nishikori of Japan.  No. 3 Roger Federer fell to Croatia's Marin Cilic (seeded 14th) in the other.

It's first time in nearly 10 years, since January of 2005 when Marat Safin defeated Lleyton Hewitt to win the Australian Open, that a final of one of the four Grand Slam events doesn't include Nadal, Djokovic or Federer (during a stretch from 2005-2012, one of those three guys won 29 of the 30 Grand Slams played).

The matchup of double-digit seeds or higher in a major final is also happening for the first time since the French Open in 2002, when unseeded Albert Costa knocked off 11th seed Juan Carlos Ferrero.  Not only that, but Nishikori is the first ever Asian-born player to reach a Grand Slam final.

According to ESPN, a prominent tennis betting outlet said it didn't even post odds for a Nishikori-Cilic final, but were it listed it would have been around 5000-1.

Sunday, September 7, 2014

Awesome Old Movie Clip of the Week: From "Zoolander" and the start of the Patriots dynasty

The Patriots begin what will likely be another 12-4 or so season today, and in honor of that here's a quick look at the last time they weren't the best team in the AFC East--13 years ago.

On September 23, 2001 the course of NFL history was forever changed when the New York Jets' Mo Lewis knocked Drew Bledsoe out of the second game of the season (pictured).  The next week Tom Brady started for the first time.  Also that week, the film Zoolander debuted in theaters nationwide.

RELATED: Agave nectar is so hot right now (like Hansel hot)

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