Recent Sports Commentaries

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“High and Tight, Mediocre Cheese” Redux
This story first ran on June 1, 2009, but I’m bringing it back because of a personal post script. At the time, steroid use in baseball was the hot topic, but my attention was drawn to another aspect of cheating. Although I believe steroid use is a whole different league of cheating, cheating is still cheating; which is why I...
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September 26, 2018
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A Line of Awesomeness
With the continuing chaos coming out of Washington on an almost daily basis, we need re-acquaint ourselves with our better angels. This week, I offer three baseball stories. This commentary is only 217 words, but it speaks volumes about civility and the simple human kindness that took place in the stands of a Detroit baseball park. As reported by Vladimir...
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September 24, 2018
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In Friday’s commentary (Right Message, Wrong Moment), I sided with Serena Williams’s point about a double standard that women are held more accountable for their bad behavior than men. I was wrong. Near the end of this year’s women’s U.S. Open final, Williams was fined $17,000 for three code violations in the finals against Japan’s Naomi Osaka, her first Grand...
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September 17, 2018
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Right Message, Wrong Moment
Last Saturday’s U.S. Open Women’s final should have been an incredible moment for Japan’s Naomi Osaka. It wasn’t, thanks to some excessive anger by a professional who should know better. The 20-year old Osaka, soft-spoken and shy, was in tears after winning the match on what Williams and others have labeled a double-standard by chair umpire Carlos Ramos when he...
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September 14, 2018
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“Never, Never Give Up”
“I will never give up. I will keep fighting till the end.” – Jim Kelly, honoree of the Jimmy V Award at the annual ESPY Awards. Near the end of his career, Sir Winston Churchill – the most quoted individual along with Lincoln – was asked to address his old English boys school, Harrow. Churchill stands to receive unanimous acclamation...
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July 23, 2018
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No. 12
Baseball season begins in just 10 days, and what better way to begin than with a great baseball story. Football may be America’s most popular game, but baseball is forever. Actually, that’s the title of a new book by former Washington Post columnist and peace studies teacher Colman McCarthy. Baseball Forever is a collection of stories McCarthy has written over...
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March 19, 2018
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Back before journalists began adding the suffix “gate” to any scandal after Watergate, one of the biggest crimes in sports exploded exactly 97 years ago last Friday. As The New York Times reported on September 29, 1920: EIGHT WHITE SOX PLAYERS ARE INDICTED ON CHARGE OF FIXING 1919 WORLD SERIES While the eight Black Sox players, as they became known,...
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October 4, 2017
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Unbearable Thoughtlessness of… Yada, Yada
“If the National Football League players want to take a knee, they should take a knee at night, every night, and thank God in heaven Donald J. Trump is president of the United States… He’s done such a tremendous job…” – Steve Bannon, former W.H. chief strategist, current Trump “wingman” Okay, let’s put this into context. Trump returns to the...
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September 27, 2017
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110 out of 111
There’s a scene early in the film, Jerry Maguire, about a sports agent, that ultimately causes the central character to pivot from sales B.S. to honest concern. It happens when the fast-talking Maguire learns that his hockey-player client is sent to the hospital after yet another punishing concussion. The agent arrives in the room just as the doctor is checking...
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July 28, 2017
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The Ethical Conscience of Rock Climbers
Climbing is a great game; great not in spite of the demands it makes, but because of them. Great because it will not let us give half of ourselves, it demands all of us. It demands our best. – Royal Robbins If the 60s and 70s are consider the Golden Age of rock climbing then Yosemite Valley was the place...
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March 20, 2017