Yesterday 50 senators urged the NFL to change the Washington Redskins’ team name. Today Reid Epstein of the Wall Street Journal asks some senators if their local Native American exploiters need some change too.
Sen. Sherrod Brown of Ohio said he didn’t object to the Cleveland Indians‘ name, but he does want the Chief Wahoo logo to go. Epstein couldn’t get comment from Georgia’s senators, Johnny Isakson and Saxby Chambliss, on the Atlanta Braves, as they were not part of the Redskins thing — that was a Democratic party jam, and Isakson and Chambliss are Republicans — so they presumably weren’t immediately available on the topic.
As I’ve written here before, I’m generally OK with Indians and Braves as names — unlike the Redskins they’re not inherently slurs — but Wahoo and the Tomahawk Chop and its attendant whooping should be dropped like third period French.
And just to head off at least a portion of the inevitable crap-fest that will appear in the comments, no, I do not think that the government should be involved in such matters. If Congressmen want to make statements like they did yesterday, by all means, do so, as they’re citizens too and moving public opinion in any way they can is totally fair game. But the names and marks of private businesses are not of governmental concern.
I feel like I shouldn’t have to clarify that kind of thing, but if you’ve hung out in any of the Wahoo threads around here, you kinda know that I do.
Newsday’s Marc Carig reports that Mets starter Steven Matz has been pitching through pain for most of the season. He may need surgery to fix a nerve issue in his elbow. Matz was sidelined in spring training with an elbow injury and made his regular season debut on June 10.
Matz, 26, has struggled over 13 starts, posting a 6.08 ERA with a 48/19 K/BB ratio in 66 2/3 innings. Many were scrambling for explanations for his pitching woes and now they have it.
According to Carig, the Mets let Matz skip his bullpen sessions to help him pitch through the pain. Given the Mets’ shoddy history of dealing with injuries, that’s not a good look for the club.
Carig noted on Twitter that Jacob deGrom offers some optimism for Matz’s case. deGrom underwent right elbow surgery to repair ulnar nerve damage last September and bounced back to have a great season this year.
Dodgers lefty Clayton Kershaw was scheduled to throw three innings in a simulated game on Monday. That simulated game went so well, he threw an extra inning, MLB.com’s Ken Gurnick reports. Kershaw will make a minor league rehab start next and could be activated towards the end of next week.
Kershaw, 29, has been on the disabled list since July 24 with a lower back strain. That put the pause button on another outstanding season. He’s carrying a 15-2 record with a 2.04 ERA and a 168/24 K/BB ratio in 141 1/3 innings.
The 87-35 Dodgers have run away with the NL West, needing some combination of 20 wins and 20 Rockies losses (19 for the third-place Diamondbacks) to officially clinch the division. While the Dodgers are all but mathematically assured of reaching postseason baseball, the club would still like to get Kershaw as ready as possible over the next month-plus.