A few items to chew on

Picked-up pieces while waiting for the Lions game on TV to remind me that it’s Thanksgiving.

How can so many otherwise brilliant people be pushing a Boston bid for the 2024 Olympics? It’s the region’s worst plan since Larry Lucchino thought it would be a good idea to hire Bobby Valentine.

So is it Brad Mar-SHOND, as in Shonda Schilling, or the trendy new Mar-SHAND, as in Garry Shandling?

Those wacky fan-boys at Deadspin bought a Hall of Fame vote from an anonymous (big surprise there) BBWAA member. The member says he/she will fess up when the process is over. Great. Wonder what the price of disgrace is these days? We all know that no association is easier to harpoon than the pompous BBWAA. We can certainly agree that the last group that should be passing judgment on candidates’ “character’’ would be baseball writers. But I’m curious to learn the identity of the person who concluded that selling his/her vote was worth the loss of the privilege and a lifetime of scorn. Knock yourself out, Deadspin. Welcome to our world. Just remember, no matter what your ballot looks like, half the baseball-watching population will conclude that you are inconsistent, unfair, and a jackass.


Would love to see UMass go deep in the NCAA Tournament. If the Minutemen make it back to the Final Four for the first time since the days of cash-carrying Coach Cal, they could borrow the slogan, “This time, it counts!’’

Even during warm-ups, I can’t stop watching Jordan Crawford.

Reprints of Kennedy assassination newspapers from 1963 shed light on what things were like all over the country a half-century ago. The New York Daily News sports section from Nov. 23, 1963, included a five-paragraph Associated Press dispatch out of Mobile, Ala., headlined, “Negroes? Bowl Ducks Issue.’’ The wire story began, “A Senior Bowl spokesman declined specific comment today on whether Negroes will be invited to play in the annual football all-star game in January.’’

Randy Moss can pass “Go,’’ collect $200, and advance directly to the Hall of Frauds occupied by pro superstars who hated the media, then joined a network as soon as their careers ended. After delivering his final rude, “No comment,’’ from in front of his locker, Moss was quick to join the panel of talking fools on Fox. Downright Nomar-like.

No empty ceremony in Cooperstown next summer. Greg Maddux and Tom Glavine both won 300-plus games. Frank Thomas hit 521 homers, same as Ted Williams and Willie McCovey. With or without Deadspin, they’re in.


When the duck boats paraded out of Fenway Nov. 2, there was an unconfirmed report that Alfredo Aceves was pulled over on the Mass. Pike while driving a float/vehicle sculpted in the shape of a cake with a vulgar expression inscribed on its side.

Sticking with the Delta House theme, did anybody else think of the “Otter speech’’ when A-Rod stormed out of his arbitration/suspension hearing in New York last week? “Do what you want to me, Bud,’’ said A-Rod. “But I’m not going to sit here and let you bad-mouth the United States of America!’’

If Tedy Bruschi gets any smaller, Wendi Nix will be able to pin him in arm-wrestling competition on the ESPN set.

Buy Tickets

A full winning share for the 2013 World Series amounted to $307,322. That’s new-house money for some of the non-uniformed personnel voted full or partial shares by the Yawkey Way world champs.

I’m thinking Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce are missing their old days with the Celtics right about now. Oh, and at Barnes & Noble, you can still buy a 2014 Celtics official NBA wall calendar that features Garnett on the cover.

Kevin Paul Dupont’s excellent piece on Zdeno Chara informs us that there’s no hazing on the Bruins. Speaking for pro football players, past and present, ex-Patriots quarterback Scott Zolak says, “I’ve been hazed at all four levels.’’

Thoughts go out to Bob Cousy, who lost his bride of 63 years in September. Cooz remains the most dignified ex-superstar this side of Bobby Orr, and Missie Cousy was a rare combination of strength, beauty, and loyalty. She was also tough enough to stand up to the lovable but gruff Red Auerbach. “If Red flicked cigar ashes on your jacket shoulder, that meant he liked you,’’ Missie said in 1993. “We ignored him.’’


Can we slow down the David Ortiz Hall of Fame Train? Everybody loves Big Papi, but he’s a DH lifer, has a positive steroid test on his résumé, and is still chasing Fred McGriff in some offensive categories. Like Curt Schilling, Ortiz will get considerable support for his postseason heroics, but I can’t get it out of my head that he looked like he was all done at the start of 2009 (39 games and 149 at-bats without a homer) and Mike Lowell was pinch hitting for him in 2010.

Sitting in Fitton Field, watching Holy Cross play Georgetown last Sunday, I heard the public address announcer delivering “other scores from around the country,’’ and was amused to hear reports of games involving Oklahoma and Michigan State. I mean, it’s not like they’re even playing the same sport. Wonder if folks in Norman, Okla., ever hear, “In other games around the country, Georgetown leads Holy Cross, 28-21, in the fourth quarter.’’

I thought the Patriots would pay for dumping Zoltan Mesko in favor or rookie Ryan Allen. Wrong. The Pats were right again.

Harvard women’s basketball coach Kathy Delaney-Smith (Jackie MacMullan’s high school coach at Westwood) registered her 500th Division 1 win last weekend. Kind of a big deal.

Speaking of women’s Division 1 hoop, kudos to Steve and Ginni Burton, proud parents of a pair of Division 1 starting guards. On Nov. 14, Kendall Burton’s Villanova Wildcats defeated Kayla Burton and Lehigh, 79-73, in overtime. Steve Burton, anchor on WBZ-TV’s sports team, was able to get away from the Patriots for a few hours to see his girls compete against one another. Kendall and Kayla’s baby brother, Austin Burton, is Newton South’s freshman starting quarterback, playing Lincoln-Sudbury today.

One last note on women’s basketball. Holy Cross coach Billy Gibbons is “on leave’’ while the school looks into a report of harassment from a former player. That’s one disgruntled ex-player in almost 30 years.

Those of us who know Gibbons, including dozens of his ex-players, are standing by the coach.

Ten years in the making, Ben Bradlee Jr.’s 856-page tome on Ted Williams hits the bookstores next week.

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'I'm kind of dumbfounded'
June 14, 2019 | 8:47 AM