Click to enlarge
The Tugboat Captain and I found ourselves in one of Brooklyn’s more esteemed watering holes yesterday afternoon, with the Cowboys/49ers game on the tube. I immediately noticed that the two teams took disparate approaches to how they handled the striping tape going over the SpeedFlex helmet’s flex panel — solid striping for Dallas, cut tape for San Francisco. I tried to explain this to the Captain, who didn’t fully grasp what what I was getting at, so I asked the Bartender Mike for a pen and created the primitive visual aid shown above. Not exactly a major work of art, but it helped to get the point across.
In other news from around the league yesterday:
• Pinktober got off to a quiet start, with only the Chargers and Saints participating. Expect a lot more teams to get on board next week, and as the rest of the month unfolds.
• Always a bit sad, at least to me, when the Chiefs go white over white, instead of wearing their gorgeous red pants.
• Steelers wide receiver Antonio Brown wore Arnold Palmer-themed cleats.
• Washington wide receiver DeSean Jackson wore pregame cleats with a police tape pattern, which he said was intended to start a dialogue about police violence.
• Panthers quarterback Cam Newton had some pretty wild pregame cleats, presumably to start a dialogue about Cam Newton.
• Players engaging in postgame jersey exchanges included Ezekiel Ellott (Cowboys) and Carlos Hyde (49ers); Byron Jones (Cowboys) and Jaquiski Tartt 49ers; Eddie Pleasant (Texas) and Daimion Stafford (Titans); Nick O’Leary (Bills) and Jacoby Brissett (Patriots); Von Miller (Broncos) and Mike Evans (Bucs); and Demetrius Harris (Chiefs) and Leterrius Walton (Steelers).
• Here’s a list of all the players who protested the national anthem this week.
(My thanks to all contributors, including Mark Kunz and our own Brinke Guthrie and Alex Hider.)
This team was made for you and me: As most of you know, I’m very uncomfortable with the sports world’s ever-tightening embrace of the military — not because I’m opposed to the military, but because (a) I think conflating patriotism with military boosterism is both wrong-headed and dangerous, and (b) I think relentlessly celebrating one class of citizens to the near-exclusion of all others presents a distorted view of our society and a one-dimensional concept of heroism.
The Baltimore Orioles apparently agree. They’ve been playing Woody Guthrie’s “This Land Was Made for You and Me” during the seventh inning stretch of Friday home games this season, and they’ve been celebrating local community heroes on Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays.
That information, none of which I had been aware of, comes from this article, which reveals that the O’s initiatives are the work of team COO John Angelos, who sounds like a pretty interesting cat. The whole article is worth reading, and definitely recommended, but here’s a key passage:
In the aftermath of the Sept. 11 attacks, major league teams began playing [“God Bless America”] as a show of patriotism. But Angelos also thought about how the Orioles could diversify the way they honored America. For instance, the team now has a program to honor community heroes at Friday, Saturday and Sunday home games.
The core of the idea was to celebrate various citizens, and not just members of the military, and pair each day with a different song (“America the Beautiful” is played on Saturdays). Last Friday, the community hero was a bus driver, Reneita Smith, who saved a group of elementary students from a burning school bus.
“People forget a lot of these stadiums are publicly funded buildings and, by law, they have to welcome people from all different walks of life,” Angelos said. “Sometimes sports can be narrowcast in the causes and groups focused on. Our idea is that everyone should be included; let’s not leave anyone out.”
Good for them. Here’s hoping other teams take notice move in a similar direction.
Now if Angelos would just do something about that goddamn upside-down apostrophe.
(Special thanks to Rex Henry for the Guthrie/Orioles photo illustration, and to Phil for arranging for Rex to create it.)
Click to enlarge
Best Summer Ever, continued: Before we ended up at that bar yesterday, the Captain and I had our weekly Last Summer Walk on the Beach, this time at Jacob Riis Park. It was a little bit brisk, but the water temp is always a few weeks behind the air temp, so it was fine for walking in the surf. The sky was grey and the beach was almost completely empty, all of which made for a perfect escape from the day-to-day grind. It was tempting to stay there forever.
Our five-weekend streak of Last Summer Walks on the Beach will be broken next weekend, because we have an upstate getaway planned. But maybe we can sneak in one last Last Summer Walk on the Beach the weekend after that.
By Alex Hider
Baseball News: The Red Sox will retire David Ortiz’s 34 next year. That’s particularly notable because the Sox usually wait for a player to enter the Hall of Fame before retiring his number. … Lots of stuff from the final game at Turner Field: Braves gameday staff wore jerseys with numbers representing their years of service. The team also used commemorative bases during the game (from Phil). … Braves fans were given dirt from the Ted’s infield on Sunday, and it also appears that team officials removed the Hank Aaron silhouettes from stadium seats before fans could take them (also from Patrick J. Williams). … Good look at the bat decals for the Indians’ Mike Napoli (From Andrew J.). … The umpires wore mismatched uniforms yesterday in St. Louis (from Tyler Oehmen). … It’s a little hard to see, but Ãngel PagÃ¡n of the Giants had JosÃ© FernÃ¡dez’s initials written in his uni number yesterday (from Martin). … Giants manager Bruce Bochy was wearing a 2013 Cactus league shirt during the Giants’ postgame celebration yesterday. … Check out this Willie McGee Topps card from 1988. The Cardinals were wearing a patch honoring 50 years of Spring Training in St. Petersburg, Florida (from Brian Mazmanian). … Redditor TwinkieFingers mocked up 2017 All-Star Game logos for every team (from Alex Nye). … Royals fan Rodney Meyer made his own 1985 World Series ring hat. … Here’s what the 2017 Instructional League patch looks like on the Yankees’ uniforms (from Jorge Cruz). … This 1982 Boys’ Life cover shows George Foster and Mike Schmidt in batting helmets with ear flaps on the wrong side (from Frank McGuigan).
Pro Football news: The BC Lions took the rare step of wearing white at home during their CFL game on Saturday (from Wade Heidt). … Check out this awesome Patriots/Bills program from 1966 (from BSmile).
College Football News: ESPN used an outdated “Troy State” logo in a graphic during Troy’s game with Idaho on Saturday (from Ryan Bohannon). … Slick lids for Alcorn State this weekend. Letters spell out “ALCORN” in the helmet’s center stripe (from Seth Shaw). … Nicholls State will be wearing solid red next weekend (from Chris Mycoskie). … Here’s a good look at Nebraska’s 3-D nose bumper lettering (from Hardy Wallbanger).
Hockey News: I fully support the NHL returning to white at home ”” but not like this: The Stars and Panthers somehow played a white-vs.-white preseason game on Sunday (from Mike Chamernik). … Flyers goalie Michal Neuvirth paid homage to late owner Ed Snider on his mask Saturday night (from Kurt Esposito). … Here’s a look at the Penguin’s alternate captain’s patch before it was applied to Nick Bonino’s jersey (from Jerry). … New uniforms for the Quinnipiac women’s team. Here’s what they wore last year (from Nolan Rich).
Basketball News: When the American and Canadian national anthems were played prior to Saturday night’s Raptors/Warriors preseason game, Raptors players linked arms, while Warriors F David West stood two feet back from the rest of his teammates. … Marquette basketball players wore awesome sweaters during picture day (from Matt).
Soccer News: Juan Agudelo of the New England Revolution suffered more than just the average uni tear on Saturday (from Ben Traxel). … Pinktober unis for the West Virginia women (from C Dubya). … During yesterday’s EPL game between Tottenham and Man City, the referees changed from purple to light blue at halftime (from TB). … Here’s a shot of Norwich FC players wearing baseball two-in-ones (from Brian Mazmanian). … Lots of Mexican soccer teams have climbed aboard the Pinktober bandwagon, including Queretaro, Monterrey, Leon, Necaxa, and Chivas. Morelia added a ribbon in the center and Club America outlined their numbers in pink. There’s also a new pink-trimmed ball (from Diego Yanez).
Grab Bag: Looks like Stance socks have made their way to the golf course (from Josh Gibson). … Did the Ryder Cup add champions patches to the US golfer’s hats before the press conference, or did they just give everyone new hats? (From Jason Reid). … Good look at the history behind the University of Texas’s colors (from Phil). … Lots of racing notes from David Firestone: Pinktober has made its way to the racetrack, F1 Drivers Valtteri Bottas and Marcus Ericsson played some hockey with the Montreal Canadiens this weekend. Also, Bottas’ helmet includes a visor tear-off paying homage to his native Finland. … The Fairfield, Conn,, Police Department has a new Pinktober cruiser (from Jim Brunetti). … Here’s a TED Talk about poorly-designed city flags (from C Dubya). … The Yale golf team’s logo shows a bulldog carrying a golf club. Or at least that’s the idea — it actually looks more like the club is impaled through the pooch’s mouth (from P. Costello).
Happy Rosh Hashanah to all who are celebrating the new year. Shanah tovah!