The NFL is currently experiencing some ugliness involving players’ treatment of a female reporter and people saying all kinds of dumb and offensive things about women in the locker room. It’s maddening to me that this kind of crap still happens, but it does — and has been for years — because as much as we’d like to think otherwise, the human race is still nothing but a bunch of grubby apes with occasionally better grooming.
But things are better than they used to be. To see that, just read this great story from FanHouse’s Pat McManamon about Doris O’Donnell Drew, who was sent to cover an Indians’ east coast road trip back in 1957. The level of hostility she received was crazy: she was kicked out of press boxes and was told by the Indians’ manager that she should “go home and make babies.” And she was just doing feature stories, not trying to go into the clubhouse right after the game or anything. Just nuts.
As McManamon notes, O’Donnell’s most memorable encounter was with Ted Williams who — while nothing short of horribly rude to her — actually gave her an interview (he later apologized for his behavior). Even at its best, however, the sports world was incredibly hostile. O’Donnell went on to cover more important things such as the civil rights movement and the political turmoil of the 1960s. There she received a better greeting.
McManamon’s piece is great stuff, which I highly recommend. And keep it bookmarked for the next time some idiot athletes decide to, once again, show the world that the human race is really a bunch of grubby apes.
Blue Jays’ outfielder Anthony Alford will miss at least 4-6 weeks after undergoing surgery on his left wrist, the team announced on Saturday. Alford was placed on the 10-day disabled list earlier in the week after sustaining a left hamate fracture on a foul pitch, and could miss significant time in what looks to be a lengthy rehab process. MLB.com’s Gregor Chisholm reports that the procedure has been scheduled for next week and will be performed by Dr. Donald Sheridan in Arizona.
Alford, 22, was called up to the majors from Double-A New Hampshire last Friday. He went hitless in his first three outings, finally catching a break against the Brewers on Tuesday when he pinch-hit a leadoff double in the seventh. The injury occurred two innings later when Alford fouled off a pitch in the ninth inning, fracturing his wrist in the process.
Alford will join eight other players on the Blue Jays’ disabled list, including outfielders Steve Pearce (calf strain), Dalton Pompey (concussion) and Darrell Cecillani (partial shoulder dislocation). He’s expected to be replaced by 24-year-old outfield prospect Dwight Smith Jr.
Good luck getting a hit against the Nationals this weekend. Stephen Strasburg followed Max Scherzer‘s 13-strikeout performance on Friday with a dazzling outing of his own on Saturday afternoon. The right-hander whiffed a career-best 15 batters in seven innings, allowing just three hits and a walk in the Nats’ 3-0 win.
It took Strasburg several innings to get into a groove after pitching into (and out of) a jam in the first inning. The Padres loaded the bases with Allen Cordoba‘s leadoff single, a throwing error by Ryan Zimmerman and a four-pitch walk to Cory Spangenberg. By the third, Strasburg was cruising, striking out the side on 18 pitches and keeping the Padres off the basepaths until the sixth. He recorded his 15th and final strikeout in the seventh inning, catching Padres’ prospect Franchy Cordero swinging on a 1-2 pitch to effectively end his outing.
While 15 strikeouts set a new career record for the Nationals’ ace, he came close to reaching the mark twice before. The first time, he struck out 14 of 24 batters during his major league debut against the 2010 Pirates, though the 5-2 win did little more than keep the Nationals neck-and-neck with the Marlins at the bottom of the NL East. Five years later, he tied his 14-strikeout record against the 2015 Phillies, tossing a one-hitter in eight innings to cement his ninth victory of the season.
The only one who doesn’t seem overly enthused by the new record? Strasburg himself, who told MLB.com’s Jamal Collier and AJ Cassavell: “It’s pretty cool, but there’s another game five, six days from now. I’ll enjoy it tonight, but back to work tomorrow.”