Sports, Media, and a 1,000 Other Things

 
This is my 1,000th post on Ricochet. I was going to hold out for something profound. As none of the other 999 posts were of anything of lasting importance I said to myself. “What the hell, why start now?” And so it goes…

Margaret Court in action (Wikipedia)

Margaret Court, OA, MBE, is without doubt Australia’s greatest female athlete. Her 24 titles in Grand Slam tennis events still stands as a record even though she last walked off the tennis court in 1977. As a testament to her greatness the Australian Open is played at Margaret Court Arena in Melbourne.

After her retirement, Court, who was raised a Roman Catholic, embraced her Christian faith and was ordained a Pentecostal minister in 1991. And here’s where it goes off the rails. Court has openly opposed gay marriage in Australia and has questioned LBGT rights legislation. She said tennis was “full of lesbians” who predatorily “took young ones into parties,” and further said that the efforts to teach children about gender fluidity compared to “the methods of Nazism and communism.”

On Monday she said, “You can think, ‘Oh, I’m a boy,’ and it will affect your emotions and feelings and everything else. So, that’s all the devil — that’s what Hitler did and that’s what communism did: got the mind of the children. It’s a whole plot in our nation, and in the nations of the world, to get the minds of the children.”

Because no matter what your accomplishments, if you don’t tow the line politically, then you must be not only be ostracized, you must also be erased. Martina Navratilova and others are now demanding her name be removed from the stadium. Navratilova said, “It is now clear exactly who Court is: an amazing tennis player, and a racist and a homophobe.” Ms. Navratilova did not explain when lesbians became a race.

I say that if the want her name off the stadium then they should sue. Then they could take the Court Courts to Court.

Ben Margot/Associated Press

Meanwhile, in America it’s the regular season in baseball and the championship season in both the NBA and the NHL. As an homage to the game on ice if you attended the Nationals-Giants on Monday then you know a hockey game broke out.

Hunter Strickland, a pitcher for San Francisco decided to avenge the two home runs that Bryce Harper hit off him in the 2014 NL Division Series. It wasn’t the two dingers, mind you, that’s part of the game. It’s the way he did it.

Harper glares at Strickland after homering in Game 4 of the NLDS (Fox/MLB)

In the 7th inning of Game 4 and with the Giants up 2-1, Harper hit a blast over the right field stands and into McCovey Cove to tie the game. Instead of rounding the bases quickly with his head down, Harper glared at the Giants righthander all the way around the bases. Because of the vagaries in the modern baseball schedule, Strickland had a full season and two off-seasons to stew over Harper’s breach of “the unwritten rules.”

Monday was their first reunion and Strickland took advantage of it. More importantly he did it right, drilling Harper in the right hip and not the head. Harper could have ended it right there by taking his base but decided to charge the mound instead. Suspensions were handed down and so was the condemnation. (As an aside, Harper deserved the suspension for the worst helmet throw in the history of the game.)

“It’s time for some real men in baseball. Enough with the childish behavior,” wrote Deron Snyder of The Washington Times. “That’s bush league,” according to Mark Antonio Wright in National Review. “Strickland had no right to throw at Harper. How should Strickland have got him back for the homers? By striking Harper out. A real pitcher would have earned a K. A chump throws at the batter.” Harper strikes out 100 times a year. Wright fails to explain the educational value of one more of them.

Ken Rosenthal of Fox Sports wrote, “Many fans, reporters and even some in the game believe that all of this needs to stop, that pitchers need to stop throwing at hitters, that the risk of injury — either from the ball that is thrown or any subsequent brawl — is simply too great.”

I spent 23 years covering Major League Baseball on a daily basis. The one thing I learned is that there is, and should be, a divide between the players and the people that cover them. And the only ones that have earned the right to be the guardians of the game are the ones that have worked for the privilege of wearing the uniform. Everybody else should just do their jobs.

Now, if we could only get the media to really do their jobs. When LeBron James’s house was vandalized on Wednesday everyone was quick to label the incident the work of a racist. James noted that “being black in America is tough” especially when you’re about to begin your third straight NBA Finals and someone spray paints something nasty on the gate of your $20.9M second home in Los Angeles. (Or is that his third?)

When Islamicists blow up innocent children in Manchester or mow them down in the streets of Nice or shoot up a gay nightclub in Orlando, we’re constantly cautioned that nobody can possibly know the motives. Yet with no arrests or even any suspects, the media has already established motive for an idiot with a can of Krylon. It’s just as likely to be a Golden State fan looking to throw the Cleveland superstar off his game before the Warriors and Cavs begin their series tonight. (9 ET on ABC)

There are more bogus hate crimes in America than the real thing. We need to stop hyping the trivial and start treating the existential for what it is.

Published in Sports
Like this post? Want to comment? Join Ricochet’s community of conservatives and be part of the conversation. Join Ricochet for Free.

There are 26 comments.

Become a member to join the conversation. Or sign in if you're already a member.
  1. Bryan G. Stephens Thatcher
    Bryan G. Stephens
    @BryanGStephens

    Ditto.. Well put man.

    • #1
  2. Tyrion Lannister Inactive
    Tyrion Lannister
    @TyrionLannister

    Congratulations on 1000.  I’ll likely never even get to 10, so 1000 seems like quite an accomplishment.  What’s more, it was a good post.

    • #2
  3. EJHill Podcaster
    EJHill
    @EJHill

    And I didn’t even have time to get to Mr. Met! (NSFW)

    • #3
  4. Steve C. Member
    Steve C.
    @user_531302

    EJHill: This is my 1,000th post on Ricochet. I was going to hold out for something profound. As none of the other 999 posts were of anything of lasting importance I said to myself. “What the hell, why start now?” And so it goes…

    You chose…………..wisely.

    • #4
  5. Percival Thatcher
    Percival
    @Percival

    The announcers were clearly of the opinion that Strickland was in the wrong, but I remember watching the game in 2014. Somehow Harper managed to get all the way to the major league without knowing that if you intentionally show up a pitcher like that, it might not happen that night, it might not happen that season, but you are going to get drilled, and you have it coming.

    • #5
  6. EJHill Podcaster
    EJHill
    @EJHill

    Percival The announcers were clearly of the opinion that Strickland was in the wrong…

    Again, the right to be the guardian of the game only comes to those that who earned the right to play it at its highest level.

    • #6
  7. Percival Thatcher
    Percival
    @Percival

    EJHill (View Comment):

    Percival : The announcers were clearly of the opinion that Strickland was in the wrong…

    Again, the right to be the guardian of the game only comes to those that who earned the right to play it at its highest level.

    I don’t know who the announcers were. I got the idea that the color guy had been a player.

    There are two classifications of color guys: Steve Stone, and morons. I wish Stone was still doing Cubs games. Moises Alou developed a bad case of crimson buttocks about Stone when Stone pointed out that Alou was dogging it and the Cubs got rid of Stone as a result. They should have gotten rid of Alou. They would have saved all that money on Alpo.

    • #7
  8. Vance Richards Member
    Vance Richards
    @VanceRichards

    EJHill (View Comment):
    And I didn’t even have time to get to Mr. Met! (NSFW)

    Yeah, I heard people talking about Mr. Met. What did he do again . . . hold up the severed head of the Phillie Phanatic . . . or was it just one of his four fingers?

    • #8
  9. EJHill Podcaster
    EJHill
    @EJHill

    Vance Richards: …or was it just one of his four fingers?

    Mr. Met wants you to know that the Mets are #1. Kinda…

     

    • #9
  10. EJHill Podcaster
    EJHill
    @EJHill

    Percival: …I got the idea that the color guy had been a player.

    That would be FP Santangelo who managed to hit 21 HR in parts of 7 seasons despite being named in the Mitchell Report on steroids. What he knows about pitching is mostly that he couldn’t hit it.

    • #10
  11. Columbo Member
    Columbo
    @Columbo

    EJ Hill … profoundly making Ricochet a better place.

    • #11
  12. KC Mulville Inactive
    KC Mulville
    @KCMulville

    EJHill:“It’s time for some real men in baseball. Enough with the childish behavior,” wrote Deron Snyder of The Washington Times.

    This line struck me funny … after all, they’re playing baseball, which is a game, which is what children play. Kind of like demanding that there should be no fighting in the War Room. (Yeah, I know it’s a multi-billion dollar entertainment industry, but it’s still a game that kids play at the local park.)

    • #12
  13. EJHill Podcaster
    EJHill
    @EJHill

    KC Mulville(Yeah, I know it’s a multi-billion dollar entertainment industry, but it’s still a game that kids play at the local park.)

    And that’s what drives everything. The Posey Rule*, the Utley Rule, the mind-numbing use of video reviews, the coaches clock – all the changes in the game that are motivated by people with ledgers in their hands instead of those carrying a bat and a ball.

    *By Posey Rule I mean the one about blocking the plate, not the one that says you sanctimoniously stand at home while your pitcher is exchanging fisticuffs with the batter.

    • #13
  14. Percival Thatcher
    Percival
    @Percival

    It’s a pity Don Drysdale is no longer with us. He could have taken Deron Snyder out and thrown him some dodging batting practice.

    • #14
  15. Ekosj Member
    Ekosj
    @Ekosj

    I’ll just passing on this tidbit from Bob Gibson and Reggie Jackson.     Both long since retired but interviewed together about pitching and hitting :

    Gibson (who hit his share of batters) said something like …

    The outside two inches of the plate … They’re mine. That’s where I make my living.  That’s where I feed my family.    If you think you’re going to lean out there so you can put good wood on the ball out there … You have another think coming.

    Jackson objected saying how he hated when guys pitched him far inside  – tried to brush him off the plate.

    Gibson – I want you to hate it.    Knowing that you hate it makes me want to do it more.   I know it’s effective.

    Jackson – If you keep brushing me back I’ll charge the mound!

    Gibson – Then I guess we’re going to have a roll in the dirt!

    They were in their sixties.     Senior citizens.   In an interview, not on the field.     Yet they still were hot.     They seemed like they could have come to blows just talking about it!

    I guess pitchers and hitters are just different breeds.     Always were.     Always will be.

    • #15
  16. Percival Thatcher
    Percival
    @Percival

    Ekosj (View Comment):
    I guess pitchers and hitters are just different breeds. Always were. Always will be.

    The pitcher has to find out if the hitter is timid, and if he is timid, he has to remind the hitter he’s timid.

    — Don Drysdale

    The trick against [Don] Drysdale is to hit him before he hits you.

    — Orlando Cepeda

    • #16
  17. Covfefe A Day Keeps Jihad Away Inactive
    Covfefe A Day Keeps Jihad Away
    @Pseudodionysius

    I just stopped by to complain.

    • #17
  18. thelonious Member
    thelonious
    @thelonious

    Lebron has been to 7 straight NBA finals btw.

    • #18
  19. EJHill Podcaster
    EJHill
    @EJHill

    thelonious : Lebron has been to 7 straight NBA finals btw.

    We in NE Ohio had not heard that. Nobody gives us the news. We have to earn it.

    • #19
  20. thelonious Member
    thelonious
    @thelonious

    EJHill (View Comment):

    thelonious : Lebron has been to 7 straight NBA finals btw.

    We in NE Ohio had not heard that. Nobody gives us the news. We have to earn it.

    4 of them were in Miami.  That’s somewhere in Florida and they play basketball there..  I believe many from NE Ohio go there to die.

    • #20
  21. Steve C. Member
    Steve C.
    @user_531302

    Johnny Roseboro and Juan Marichal. They don’t make em like that anymore.

    • #21
  22. Brian Clendinen Member
    Brian Clendinen
    @BrianClendinen

    Margaret Court is the greatest female tennis player ever better than either of the Williams Sisters. Many sports writers are saying Serena should be in the top 10 of greatest American Athletes of any sex. If that is so then Margaret Court should be consider one of the 10 or 20 greatest Athletes of modern times since she was better by a decent margin than Serena.

    • #22
  23. Jules PA Inactive
    Jules PA
    @JulesPA

    EJHill, you’re batting a thousand.

    You get an award for getting me to read, and enjoy, a post with a sports theme.

    • #23
  24. Percival Thatcher
    Percival
    @Percival

    I have to amend my list of tolerable color announcers. ESPN has hired David Ross, and he’s pretty good.

     

    • #24
  25. Steve C. Member
    Steve C.
    @user_531302

    Percival (View Comment):
    I have to amend my list of tolerable color announcers. ESPN has hired David Ross, and he’s pretty good.

    And a passable dancer.

     

    • #25
  26. jonb60173 Member
    jonb60173
    @jonb60173

    God Bless Margaret Court, right, wrong or indifferent, speak your mind.  RE: Harper/Strickland – once you bean a guy you’ll find out who’s inside.

    • #26
Become a member to join the conversation. Or sign in if you're already a member.