The Saturday Sitdown...

Prior to game 3 of the National League Championship Series this past Monday, St. Louis Cardinals Pitching Coach Mike Maddux decided to get in a round of golf at the Army-Navy Country Club in Arlington, Va.

Maddux, a two-handicapper, amazed his playing partners by carding not one, but two hole-in-ones in the round, recording them on the 186-yard No. 3 on the White Course and the 142-yard No, 4 on the Blue Course. Given the Cardinals were swept in the series, I guess you could say Maddux had more aces in his golf bag than on his pitching staff….

With 105,000 residents, Green Bay, Wis. is the smallest market in the United States to host an NFL team. How small is that really? Well Billings, Mont., and Richardson, Texas, are both bigger and it seems weird that Orlando, San Antonio, Texas and Portland, Ore., all have metro areas of 2.3 million or more and do not have an NFL franchise. Still, I am not sure those areas would be as supportive of an NFL team as the good people of Green Bay are of their Packers. The city has sold out famed Lambeau Field (current capacity 81,000) for every home game since 1959….

I have to be honest with you.  When I was a kid, I thought quicksand was going to be a much bigger problem than it really is….

If the Dallas Cowboys decide to replace Jason Garrett, it is a foregone conclusion that they are going to go hard after University of Oklahoma Head Coach Lincoln Riley.  Last year, looking to fend off NFL suitors, Oklahoma gave Riley a new deal that includes $36 million for five years as a base salary, memberships in two exclusive private country clubs, 40 hours per year of jet service for personal use, a suite at every home game, plus 20 prime season tickets. While that package is in line with what top college football coaches make at the highest level, I will never understand why colleges grant these contracts, but allow escape options by agreeing to ridiculously low buyouts. What’s the purpose of giving the big pay raise and contract, if you still make it relatively easy for the coach to escape if he wants to? If the Cowboys go after Riley in the off-season, it will cost Jerry Jones less money to buy him out of the Oklahoma contract then it would for a team to buy Josh Heupel out of his UCF deal. It doesn’t make sense to me….

Golf’s rules have long been misunderstood, ignored, and misinterpreted by the average player. But sometimes these rules are so obscure and unbelievable that officials on the PGA Tour don’t even understand them. Enter Sweden’s Jasper Parnevik. Playing in the SAS Championship, a PGA Senior Tour event at Warick Hills Country Club in Michigan, Parenvik was attempting a short bogey putt that he hit a bit too hard. The ball ended up doing a 360 around the cup and came back at him, striking his foot before he could move out of its way. He proceeded to tap in for a double bogey. Upon discussing the situation with officials after the round, Jasper was accessed a one-shot penalty. Now here’s the kicker – Parnevik  was accessed the penalty not because the putt came back and hit him, but because he broke the rules of golf by not taking a mulligan! Parnevik was actually required to play the shot over without penalty. Rule 11.1.b. Exception 2 (yes that’s the terminology) states, “When ball played from a putting green accidentally hits any Person, Animal, or Movable Instruction (Including another ball in motion) on that putting green: The stroke does not count and the original ball or another ball must be replaced on its original spot.  Because he failed to do so, he was penalized one stroke.

“He not only gets a mulligan, he is required to take a mulligan,” long-time PGA Rules Official Brian Claar noted.  “He should have put it back and tried again.”

According to Claar, the rule is so obscure that the USGA could not recall it ever happening in a professional tournament.  Who knew?...

I find it offensive when cashiers look at my money like it’s fake. If I knew how to counterfeit money, I would patronizing a lot better places than McDonalds…

Which comes first, the chicken or the egg? Cardinals explode for 13 runs in first three innings of deciding game 5 against Braves, and then proceed to score a grand total of six runs in their next 42 innings. Did the bats go cold or did they run into dominating pitching?  Guessing a little of both…

Have a hard time being critical of a baseball player when he lands a big contract. Yes, the long term contract like the one Bryce Harper signed can be called ridiculous. Yet the real issue is the fact that many of these talented players are grossly underpaid early in their careers.  While there is no real justification to give Harper an average of 25 million a year for 13 years, there’s equally no justification for the Mets being able to force Pete Alonso (53 home runs, 120 RBI) to play for $550,000 next season, and slightly more than that for 2021.  The system is broken…

Speaking of money, a lot of agents and some athletes blasted the Vince McMahon announcement that the average salary of XFL players will be around $55,000.   Having worked in minor and emerging football leagues for the better part of two decades, I can say that compensation is certainly in line – and in many cases a lot more generous – than what the other non-major league big 5 team sports (Hockey, baseball, basketball, football and soccer) are paying. The fact remains it is not the NFL, starting and operating the league is a huge financial commitment on McMahon’s part, and he is going to lose millions, not make millions, in the first three years of operation.

The XFL is going to be a chance for players to maybe work their way back to NFL, and make an average of $5500 a game while doing it. With few other options for these guys to play football for pay, I’m not sure what there is to complain about…

Y’all have a good week.