San Fran Loses Battle With A Badminton Badass

Due to the economy, a lot of local governments have had to raise prices or fees regarding certain hobbies and recreational activities. For instance, in Iowa there was talk of raising the price of hunting and fishing license fees 34% until public outcry caused the state to drop the issue. The same thing happened in Idaho.

Now, in San Francisco there isn’t much hunting or fishing going on, so the local government there has to think of other areas to make some extra money. Which is why the Parks Department decided to start charging badminton players at the city’s public gyms $4 to rent a court for 45 minutes. Of course, the fact that they weren’t charging any of the basketball or volleyball players using the same court kind of ticked off the badminton players (are they called shuttlecockers?), and they didn’t just stand there and take it.

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Did The Giants Sign Big Unit Just To Sell Tickets?

The Giants hadn’t exactly made a splash in free agency this offseason, moving away from a potential trade for Jake Peavy and failing to add significant bats to a pretty anemic offense. But all that may have started to change late last night, when the Giants inked 21-year veteran Randy Johnson to shore up the back end of their rotation. According to the SAN FRANCISCO CHRONICLE, Johnson’s deal is for a single year at $8 million, with another $2.5 million up for grabs in achievable incentives.

randy johnson

(Johnson put on an extra layer of orange toner just for Giants fans.)

That’s right folks, the Big Unit has a job, and now he’ll have plenty of motivation for a handful of starts during the season, when he can take on his former employers, the Diamondbacks. Still, as much as Johnson’s debut in the Bay Area could be a significant bolster to San Francisco’s hopes to becoming a legitimate ball club again, it’s hard not to be a bit cynical about the Giants’ latest signing: Is it possible that they just want to get in on another record chase?

Consider this: the Giants’ attendance plummeted last year after the departure of Barry Bonds. While the chase to befoul Hank Aaron’s record drove people to AT&T Park in droves, despite a crappy product on the field, the lack of drama surrounding the team’s young core made San Francisco an utterly skippable baseball commodity. In the next offseason, the Giants go out and sign an aging pitcher on the verge of 300 wins.

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Digger Phelps Trades The Broadcast Booth For The Stage

• AWFUL ANNOUNCING shines the Broadway spotlight on Digger Phelps, master thespian:

Digger Phelps Master Thespian

Neil Best of NEW YORK NEWSDAY tries to talk shop with DEADSPIN guru Will Leitch.• Edward McClellan of SALON runs down how marathons are being ruined by amateurs.

• The RIVERSIDE PRESS-ENTERPRISE takes some reps with the next USC QB superstar - former Arkansas Razorbacks starter Mitch Mustain:

Mitch Mustain

• 100% INJURY RATE feels the recent Bonds flap is just one more example of why the Bay Area is in sports hell.• FAN IQ swears they heard South Park characters say that Broncos QB Jay Cutler sucks.

• WE ARE SEC gets all gussied up for the upcoming Arizona State & USC fashion show - all for the benefit of the Matt Leinart Foundation:

Matt Leinart

• THE BRAVES SHOW feels the brotherly love, as Scott Rolen may come back to Philadelphia.• YOU BEEN BLINDED faces up to the mangling menace of Chinese chin straps.

• To celebrate their #1 ranking, BIG TEN TAILGATE advises LSU fans to drink up. And this woman certainly does:

LSU Tequila Queen

• ESPN SOCCERNET kicks over news that England’s Sports Minister is concerned about the number of foreigners on British soccer teams.• COLLEGE NEWS is not shaking in their boots at these unintimidating school mascots.