7:15 PM Former Eden (New York) High School assistant wrestling coach Justin Farrara pleaded guilty Thursday to third-degree statutory rape charges for having sex with two teenage girls. Police were able to track down Farrara through a Western New York Confessions Twitter page.
6:30 PM A fan at Wednesday's Brewers-Blue Jays game in Milwaukee lost his beer as another fan was trying to catch a foul ball, so Fox Sports Wisconsin announcers Brian Anderson & Bill Schroederbought the fan another beer.
(A pensive moment with the latter-day Howard Hughes, Hank Steinbrenner)
Seriously, that’s a superpower, right? Hank Steinbrenner is Antimicrobial Man! Leaps over tall tales in a single bound! Scrubs clubhouses clean with one flick of his hair! Sanitizes all Yankees stories on the YES Network with just a grunt! Anyone that can keep that building in the Bronx free of germs deserves a Nobel Prize in medicine and a World Series ring. Read more…
How could they possibly lower the prices on those tickets? We suspect it’s because they’re so far away that they actually sit in international waters. Brooks heard a Montserrat vessel fired on a hot dog vendor during a dry run earlier today, but that’s not the least of your problems if you sit out there. We hear you don’t have to wait until interleague play to see pirates.
(How Yankees owners see Yankees fans)
(Hope you’re loving this Borscht belt humor, Yankees fans, because the remaining $12 seats are in the Catskills. The concession stand is lousy out there in Rochester… and such small portions! HA!) Read more…
With steroids now dominating the headlines in baseball again, the sport needs a new public relations makeover. Could a salary cap be just the gesture the sport needs to get back in the good graces of the American people? The idea has been knocked around for years, but now even big market teams like the Red Sox are throwing support toward the idea.
(No, no, not that kind of salary cap)
Of course, the Sox are only interested these days because of the new stadium down in New York, which is going to put massive amounts of cash in the pockets of the Steinbrenners — and allow them to spend even more on salaries. It’s not insane, even, to think that the Yanks would run their payroll up to $300 million or more in the next few seasons.
Someday Joe Torre is going to be in the Hall of Fame as a manager. The only question is which cap he will be wearing on his bust: Dodgers, Cardinals, Mets or Braves? Because based on the contents of his new autobiography, it sure as hell won’t be the Yankees. The NEW YORK POST says that the book, entitled “The Yankee Years,” is filled with just the sort of juicy tidbits and accusations you would expect from anything involving the Yankees.
The book, co-written by SI baseball scribe Tom Verducci, is not on sale at Amazon.com until Feb. 3, but the newspaper was able to obtain an advance copy through lots of hard work and close sources. Meaning: they went to a bookstore in New York that was selling it early and bought a copy. In the book, Torre goes into great detail about his exit and his relationship with Yankee brass, but he also has some special words for Alex Rodriguez - and they aren’t good:
In this offseason alone, the Yankees have spent $432.5 million on three free agents: pitchers CC Sabathia and A.J. Burnett and first baseman Mark Teixeira. To get Sabathia and Burnett, New York bid above market prices. For Teixeira they shot appropriately high. yet all those moves pale in comparison to what the Yankees could have bought with the same money in the downtrodden stock market: Freddie Mac, a controlling ownership of Churchill Downs, half of the New York Times or one-third of Foot Locker.
That’s right, Steinbrenner, Steinbrenner and Steinbrenner, Inc., clearly could have spent their money a bit more wisely, according to CNBC Sports Business guru Darren Rovell. Two years ago Freddie Mac was booming, and there’s no reason the organization couldn’t return to their previous glory of share-price highs. Just think: The Yankees could own one of the largest mortgage brokerages in history. They could call it Yankee Homes and go buy up one-third of New England delinquincies, forcing Red Sox fans to sign on to “Yankee Home” deeds. The possibilities are endless.
Instead, New York has two pitchers and a slugging first baseman. For five years (assuming Sabathia doesn’t opt out). Seems like a misallocation of resources, if you ask us.
(get ready to see this a lot next year, Yanks fans)
It makes perfect sense. Manny is from New York City and grew up literally within a mile or so of Yankee Stadium. Manny also cares about placating Red Sox fans possibly less than anyone who has ever played in Boston (and you thought Sawx fans were mad about Johnny Damon going to the Bronx). Manny’s also the kind of guy who would probably go play in Kazakhstan if they offered him the most money, so if the Yankees offer the most cash he almost certainly will go there. The DAILY NEWS claims that Hank Steinbrenner is pushing for Manny, while Joe Girardi and Brian Cashman aren’t entirely sold on the idea. Stay tuned.
Joe Johnson bricked a free throw with three seconds left last night, and the Celtics did something they couldn’t do in last year’s playoffs – win in Atlanta. Boston won its 16th consecutive game with an 88-85 victory over the Hawks. At this point, I think it’s legitimate to start considering the C’s a potential 70-win team. They’re 24-2 now, and are not entirely reliant on the “big three.” Guys like Rajon Rondo and Kendrick Perkins are turning into legitimate players, and they just don’t seem to have any major weaknesses (well, there is Ray Allen’s defense).
In another big game, the Hornets went on a late 13-0 run and beat the Spurs 90-83 in New Orleans. Chris Paul set an NBA record by recording a steal in his 106th-straight game. And LeBron James got a standing ovation last night for his 32-point performance…in Minnesota. That’s how desperate T-Wolves fans are to cheer for something. It must warm Kevin McHale’s heart. The Cavs won the game 93-70 to improve to 21-4.
Now it’s time for you to guess how many links I’ll be providing you now — without going over (don’t be that guy who bids $1):
• I know this is a sports blog, but we need to talk about The Price Is Right for a second. On Tuesday, a guy got the price of his showcase exactly right. This has only happened one other time in this history of the show, back in the early ’70s (the exact date isn’t known). But the big shock in all of this is that Drew Carey reacted to this unbelievable achievement as if the dog he just had neutered was hit by a car:
So what’s the real story here? Well, it seems that there was a ringer in the audience. Apparently, there are people so obsessed with TPIR that they memorize the prices of anything and everything that could be on the show (and I guess some prizes are repeated), and one of those people just happened to be in the audience and shouted out the exact price of the showcase, which Terry used as his bid (Terry also got his one-bid item right on the nose earlier in the show, presumably with the help of the mystery man). And the guy has been found. His name is Ted. After Terry’s bid (but before Drew revealed the actual answers), suspicious producers stopped the taping and met for what is rumored to be as long as 30 minutes to decide what to do, but then realized that no rule had really been broken (people are allowed to shout suggestions from the audience). But Drew knew exactly what was going on, and thus didn’t even pretend to be excited when he announced the winning bid. I feel bad for the other lady, who was only $400 off. Tough break.
• CBS2 in L.A. brings us sad news. MMA fighter Justin Levens and his wife were found shot to death in a Southern California condo yesterday. Levens had a 9-8 professional record, and had fought for various brands, including UFC. One of his losses was to Evan Tanner, who died earlier this year when he ventured out into the desert alone and ran out of water.
• Scott Shafer resigned as defensive coordinator at Michigan after one season, and blamed the “demise” of the program on himself. No, it certainly didn’t have anything to do with the horrible offense. The DETROIT NEWS has the full story.
• More unfortunate news, as former Astros and Cubs closer Dave Smith died yesterday at the age of 53. Smith is Houston’s career save leader with 199. FAN HOUSE points out that Smith will most be remembered for giving up a walk-off homer to Lenny Dykstra in the 1986 NLCS, but Smith was an excellent pitcher. His career 2.67 ERA was well below the league average for relievers during his career.
One of the last times I saw Bernie Williams play at Yankee Stadium, he attempted to throw out a runner at the plate from shallow center field. And “attempted” is used loosely here, because the ball bounced twice and came to rest just inside the pitcher’s mound. That was 2006.
(”I’ll reel in the big free agents with smooth jazz”)
But despite a budding career as a musician, Bernie still has the baseball bug and expressed interest in making a comeback — though it appears he only would want to return to the Yankees. Your move, Brian Cashman.
Validating those of you out there who think the Ryder Cup is more dangerous than the NHL, it was reported on Tuesday night that St. Louis Blues defenseman Erik Johnson suffered what appears to be a season ending knee injury while golfing last week. The 20-year-old Johnson, one of the bright young defensive stars in the NHL, tore his ACL and MCL when his leg got caught between the gas pedal and brake pedal on his golf cart. If I was Johnson, I probably would’ve tried to pull a modified Monta Ellis and lie about it, and at least say I was wrestling a wild boar or something.
What’s the big secret to the 49ers’ 2-1 start? It might be this thing:
The creatively-named “Glove” is a newfangled contraption that is reportedly “billed as better than steroids without any ill effects.” It pulls blood into your palm and cools it down or something, I think. Whatever, this article from the SAN FRANCISCO CHRONICLE should tell you all you need to know.
Q: Do you, Mr. Arenas, take this woman as your wife? A: Hibachi! (thank you WASHINGTON POST)
Alex Rodriguez may have given up on the season*, but Lil’ Hank Steinbrenner has faith that the guys who put the Yankees in their current predicament will also turn help things around next year.
Obviously, Hank’s old man, George, has a lot to do with New York’s situation, but since he’s family — and more importantly, the reason his son has a job — the fingers are pointing in the general direction of GM Brian Cashman and first-year manager Joe Girardi. But according to the ASSOCIATED PRESS, nobody’s getting canned. Not yet, anyway.