The Red Sox ran into the least exciting triple play in living memory

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There are many different kinds of triple plays.

The most exciting triple play is the quick-as-fire around-the-horn number, with a third baseman and a second baseman firing off the ball like their lives depend upon it: “5! 4! 3! They turned three!”

Those bear multiple replays and should be featured on highlight shows.

Down the list from that a bit are the ones where one player — usually a shortstop — drives the action, maybe catching a hot shot on a leap, coming down and touching the bag and then running down the guy who left first base and who couldn’t get his brain around what the hell was going on until the shortstop already tagged him. Those are fun too. Individual showcases.

After that there are, say, a half dozen other triple plays, then there’s fifty feet of crap, and then there’s this one the Red Sox just ran themselves into against the Orioles in the bottom of the eighth inning of tonight’s game. Watch:

Yep: a dropped pop fly + brain dead runners and that’s about it.

It doesn’t matter much as the Sox beat the Orioles 5-2. And because, hey, three outs are three outs. But at least we now have a baseline for triple plays.

New Jersey legislators call MLB’s request for a cut of gambling proceeds “laughable”

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As we’ve noted in multiple posts in recent weeks, the legalization of sports gambling across the country is imminent. Indeed, it could come as early as next week, once the Supreme Court rules on the case brought by New Jersey to overturn the decades-old sports gambling ban.

As we’ve also noted, MLB and the other leagues are pressuring states to get a cut of the proceeds once gambling is legalized. Their argument — which is spurious in the extreme — is that the leagues will have a much harder time maintaining the integrity of their sports once sinful gambling comes out of the dark and into the light. As such, they argue, it’s morally incumbent upon the states to throw some of that money to the leagues so they can, I dunno, hire chaperones or den mothers or something. It’s all very vague, but the leagues are calling their sought-after cut “integrity fees,” and they’re lobbying state legislatures hard to get the new gambling laws written to include them.

Last month I wrote about how in West Virginia, Rob Manfred’s effort to get that cut wasn’t going so well. Today at NJ.com, Brent Johnson writes about how things are going in New Jersey:

[New Jersey] legislative leaders have balked at the leagues’ request for a fee, three sources with knowledge of the situation told NJ Advance Media. One source called the proposal “laughable.”

This is shocking. I mean, what are the odds that a Park Avenue lawyer couldn’t walk into New Jersey and successfully shake down guys for gambling money? Woulda thought that’d go super successfully, actually. I’ve gotta rethink everything TV and movies have taught me about trying to get gambling money out of dudes from Jersey.

Laughs aside, in the end I suspect Manfred’s gambit will pay off in more places that it doesn’t, mostly because public officials have always been sort of star struck and strangely intimidated by professional sports figures. Many states will kick back some of that gambling loot to the leagues and the leagues, in turn, will kick it back to the team owners, because that’s where all of the money goes, always.

But I do hope state legislators continue to at least make it hard and somewhat embarrassing for Manfred and his friends to get their share. In the words of noted gambling expert Bernie Bernbaum,  “I wanna watch you squirm; I wanna see you sweat a little, and when you smart me… it ruins it.”