Touch ’em All – September 20, 2017

Today’s sports stories and hot takes.

Much has been discussed about baseball’s home run revolution. Are the balls different? The bats? Are swing paths changing? Is everyone juicing? So many questions, but it is really no surprise to anyone that the MLB record for home runs in a season was broken last night. The source of the record-breaking home run might be more surprising though. Alex Gordon of the Kansas City Royals hit record-breaking home run 5,694 last night in the 8th inning of the Royals loss to the Toronto Blue Jays, his 8th of the year. Alex Gordon who since signing the Royals’ largest contract ever has done nothing but struggle at the plate despite continuing to provide Gold Glove defense. Baseball is weird.

Racism has played a leading role in Boston sports history. From Jackie Robinson’s sham of a tryout for the Boston Red Sox, Tom Yawkey’s failure to integrate the Sox for a dozen years after the color barrier was broken, the Celtics’ legendary center Bill Russell’s home being broken into and the intruders shitting on his bed, the abuse heaped upon Joel Ward of the Washington Capitals during the 2012 playoffs against the Boston Bruins, to the racial epitaphs slung at Adam Jones of the Baltimore Orioles in May of 2017, Boston has had a problem. In an attempt to distance themselves from this dark history, the Boston Red Sox are joining forces with other Boston teams to create anti-racism PSAs. The first of these PSAs will be shown before the game at Fenway on September 28. 

In not at all surprising news, male sports football fans freaked the fuck out when Beth Mowins, a woman, broke a new glass ceiling Monday night when she called Monday Night Football for ESPN. From an objective standpoint, she carried the show while Rex Ryan flailed. This didn’t stop football fans across social media from saying “I’m not sexist but….”

Serena Williams continues to prove she’s better at everyone at everything in a touching letter to her mother.

Thank you for being the role model I needed to endure all the hardships that I now regard as a challenges — ones that I enjoy,” Williams writes. “I hope to teach my baby Alexis Olympia the same, and have the same fortitude you have had.

Pitcher for the Colorado Rockies, Pat Neshek called Zack Greinke of the Arizona Diamondbacks a turd. Pat really doesn’t like it when you won’t sign his baseball cards and Zack doesn’t want to sign his. Is it because he’s an asshole? Is it because of his social anxiety? Does Zack just not like Pat? Has Pat been an overbearing, entitled jerk in his pursuit of these autographs? It was a pretty jerky move to even bring Zack’s well-documented social anxiety issues up over a baseball card. I really hope that no matter what else Pat is doing he stops and signs for every autograph seeker, every time.

Is it possible that the NFL’s shrinking numbers are a product of their own business model and have literally nothing to do with Colin Kaepernick, despite what your uncle told you as he drunkenly slobbered into his mashed potatoes last Thanksgiving?

This is a very boring, simple explanation as to why the NFL’s ratings are declining. It is not an opportunity for you to shoehorn in your feelings about Colin Kaepernick protesting the game. No one really cares about your feelings about Colin Kaepernick’s protest, because if you are the kind of person who gets really offended by Colin Kaepernick’s protest, then your feelings in 2017 are the most boring and predictable thing about you, and telling on you in a deeply unflattering light.

The simpler and also boring systemic problem with the NFL that might actually explain something is its success, and how that success made the ownership class in the NFL fat, lazy, and locked into a business model they have no real reason or incentive to change, even with falling TV ratings.

New Jersey Devils forward, Brian Doyle has been diagnosed with leukemia and plans to play through treatment.

“I don’t like missing games. It’s just a thing you have to deal with, and that’s for us to deal with,” Boyle said.

A group of 45 men dressed like Magnum P.I. was ejected from Comerica Park Saturday for smoking, catcalling, and just generally being asshats. Tom Sellek was unavailable for comment.

Fans of Manchester United have taken to reciting a racist chant celebrating 24-year-old striker, Romelu Lukaku’s penis. Yes. I said penis. 

It takes a certain degree of arrogance and audacity – both rooted in white privilege – to believe that a person who is not affected by racism should get to define what constitutes it. The burden then, falls on the very same group of people who are most likely to be hurt by racist stereotypes. In this case, those black United supporters who find the chant to be offensive must also now do the work of explaining why this particular stereotype can be damaging. They must bear the burden of the racism, and then do the work of the unaffected and intellectually lazy who cry foul.

Four South Carolina high school students spell out R.A.P.E. on their chests, as they were festooned in pink ribbons (don’t get me started on that) during the “Touchdown Against Cancer” series. School punishes them for this public endorsement of rape culture but doesn’t believe it warrants expulsion. The world keeps turning.  Also, since when is “bump cancer” a slogan?

The game was part of the “Touchdown Against Cancer” series, and students had painted their stomachs in pink letters to spell out “bump cancer” for the game, said Kyle Newton, director of external affairs for District 5.

 

Today in sports history:

1919 – Babe Ruth ties Ned Williamson’s major league mark of 27 HRs

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About Basic Pitch

Basic Pitch is a worn out single mother of two with resting bitch face who doesn't have time for your racist, misogynistic, classist, ableist, xenophobic, intolerant bullshit. She is an atheist, tree hugging, pro-science, pro-gun control, pro-vaccination, pro-choice, feminist, liberal snowflake. She also likes reading, baseball, and long walks on the beach.