Lots Of Little Stuff Today

The Baseball Hall of Fame ballot for 2021 was released about a week ago; there are 25 names on this year’s list.  Here is a link to that list and to the career stats for those 25 players.

I think voters this year will be challenged to come up with an induction class for 2021 that is “appropriate”.  I do not see many worthy candidates on this list, nor do I see any single player who deserves to have the stage to himself as the “one-and-only member of the class of 2021.”  There is precedent for an “Empty Year”; that happened in 2013; no one on the ballot then received the requisite 75% of the votes cast to make it into the Hall of Fame.

If I had a vote – which I most certainly do not – I would vote for these three nominees:

  1. Jeff Kent
  2. Curt Schilling
  3. Billy Wagner

I would listen with an open mind to someone advocating for these three players on the ballot:

  1. Tim Hudson
  2. Gary Sheffield
  3. Omar Vizquel

The results of the voting will be announced on January 26, 2021 so that leaves 9 weeks for debates/predictions/accusations and etc.…

I read last week that the TV ratings for The Masters tanked this year; the estimated number of viewers for the “Autumn-version” of The Masters was fewer than in any year since 1996.  I think there is a simple explanation here.  In US sports, the Fall belongs to football.  At its normal position in the sporting calendar, The Masters need only compete with the NFL Draft for attention and with the end of the NBA regular season and early season MLB for eyeballs on a TV set.  In 2021, the two weekend rounds of The Masters saw dozens of college football games televised by competing networks/channels on Saturday and a full slate of NFL games on Sunday.  Case closed…

When I become aware of a fashion trend or some sort of new social custom, it normally means that it is time for everyone to move on and find something new to obsess over.  What I am about to describe has probably been ongoing for a while, but I only noticed it consciously this weekend.  Several players in various football games – – college and NFL games – – wore eye black under their left eye only.

I reject the hypothesis that the players I saw in this fashion statement all suffer from a condition wherein they all need extra photons entering their right eyeball in order to have proper vision to play football. Hence my question:

  • What is the significance of eye black applied under the left eye only?

The Clemson/Florida State football game on Saturday was postponed at the last minute; the Clemson team and staff were already in Tallahassee when an issue arose.  One of the Clemson players who had traveled with the team to Florida tested positive on a Friday test whose results were reported on Saturday; that player had previously tested negative twice during the prior week.  This positive test result caused some anxiety at Florida State about playing the game and when the two camps could not agree on how to handle the matter, the game was postponed.

Clemson coach, Dabo Swinney, is not exactly a “COVID-denier” but he is also someone whose statements have made it clear that he thinks football is sufficiently essential to life that COVID needs to take a back seat to football games and practices and the like.  As you might expect, Swinney was not pleased by the postponement and had this to say on a conference call with reporters:

“If the standard to play was zero positive tests, then we would have never had a season.  This game was not canceled because of COVID. COVID was just an excuse to cancel the game. To be honest with you, I don’t think it has anything to do with their players. I have no doubt that their players wanted to play and would have played. Same with the coaches. To me, the Florida State administration forfeited the game.”

Just in case that statement does not convince you that Swinney is more than merely miffed at what went down over the weekend, he also said that if Florida State wants to find a date to make up the game from Saturday, Swinney said that as far as he is concerned, the Seminoles can come to Clemson to play the game or they can pay all of Clemson’s travel expenses to make another sojourn to Tallahassee.

Dwight Perry had this pertinent observation in his column in the Seattle Times last week:

“The No. 19 who made the biggest impact in pro-football history was:

  • Unitas
  • Alworth
  • COVID”

Finally, Bob Molinaro had this item in the Hampton Roads Virginian-Pilot a couple of weeks ago:

Regular Joe: Football, like life, takes funny turns. Bengals quarterback Joe Burrow, the Heisman Trophy winner from LSU, already has one hand on the Rookie of the Year trophy, while the guy who beat him out at Ohio State is a missing person. Can we get a search party to find Dwayne Haskins?”

But don’t get me wrong, I love sports………



6 thoughts on “Lots Of Little Stuff Today”

  1. According to my “source” in Greensboro – The disagreement in Tallahassee this weekend had to do with the ACC contact tracing protocol. The infected Clemson player was tested on Friday morning before boarding the plane for the trip to Florida. Clemson says their players all wore N95 masks on the plane, so they do not believe the time on the plane counts as close contact. The FSU medical folks believe he was positive for days before that test because he was showing symptoms on Thursday. Since Clemson did not know he was positive prior to the Friday test result was known (after the team arrived in Florida), they made no attempt to isolate him from other team members.

    The ACC contact tracing protocol says any individual identified in contact tracing must be quarantined for 14 days from the contact date. FSU felt Clemson was not forthcoming about the close contact issue. I betcha Dabo’s broadside will tempt someone on FSU’s staff to reveal more about this disagreement.

  2. The No. 19 who made the biggest impact in Raider pro-football history was:

    Cotton Davidson (1962 -1969).

    Then John Unitas.

    1. TenaciousP:

      Only you and members of Cotton Davidson’s nuclear family would take that position…

  3. My ballot

    Schilling – THE money pitcher on the list, druggies included. Not in due to political views and being generally unpleasant.

    Vizquel – the AL Ozzie. Saved so many runs

    Kent – .290 and 300 HRs for a second baseman

    I have them, but if you don’t…. not a biggie

    Sheffield – 500 hrs, 500 slugging, 290. But a bit of an accumulator

    Helton – yeah, I know, Coors, but I saw him get a lot of hits on the road.

    I don’t have him, but Lord knows there are worse in the Hall – wouldn’t cheapen the Hall much


    No to any druggies. Not big on relievers,

    1. Ed:

      I particularly agree that Schilling is not in the Hall of Fame because of his churlishness and not because of his performances on the field.

      I can’t get past the “Mile High Factor” with him as easily as you.

      I just don’t see Rolen and the HoF in the same picture.

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