Man flushes his friend’s ashes down ballpark toilets across the land

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What? Don’t look at me like that. You read the headline. You knew exactly what you were getting into here. This comes from the New York Times, though, so it’s classy and stuff. 

But yes, the story is pretty straightforward. A Mets fan named Tom McDonald was best friends with fellow Mets fan Roy Riegel. Riegel died nine years ago and McDonald was charged by Riegel’s family with disposing of his ashes in an appropriate manner. At first McDonald scattered some at ballparks and notable places, but then he realized it’d just be easier to flush him down the toilet at ballparks around the country:

“The game has to be in progress — that’s a rule of mine,” Mr. McDonald said one recent weeknight before entering a Citi Field bathroom, holding a little plastic bottle containing a scoopful of Mr. Riegel’s cremains . . . “I took care of Roy, and I had to use the facilities myself,” Mr. McDonald said, emerging from the stall with the empty container. “So I figure, you know, kill two birds . . I always flush in between, though,” he added. “That’s another rule of mine.”

It’s appropriate because Riegel was a plumber. And because, according to his friend, he was “a major partier” who “walked that tightrope between genius and insanity.” His cause of death was not specified, but the article says “The fast life caught up with him.” Whatever the case, McDonald thinks his friend would’ve wanted it this way. And who are we to question that?

So far, his ashes have been deposited at least nine stadiums. But not just stadiums:

In Cleveland, Mr. Riegel’s ashes were flushed at both Progressive Field and at the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, because Mr. Riegel was a devout rocker.

I bet he was.

The Giants might be ready to part ways with Hunter Pence

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Alex Pavlovic of NBC Sports Bay Area hints that the Giants may be done with outfielder Hunter Pence. It’s not clear just how seriously the club is contemplating such a decision, but there are six days remaining on Pence’s rehab assignment, at which point they’ll be able to recall him, reassign him to the minors or release him.

The 35-year-old outfielder has struggled to make a full recovery after spraining his right thumb during the first week of the season. Pence bounced back for a 17-game run with the Giants in April, during which he slashed a meager .172/.197/.190 with one double and one stolen base in 61 plate appearances, but was eventually placed on the disabled list with recurring soreness in his finger. He currently sports a promising .318/.359/.388 batting line with four extra-base hits (including a grand slam) over 92 PA in Triple-A Sacramento.

Despite his recent resurgence in Triple-A, the Giants may not need the additional outfield depth just yet. Mac Williamson, who was recalled in the wake of Pence’s DL assignment, has already cemented the starting role in left field and is off to a strong start at the plate as well. Of course, if the Giants decide to say a premature goodbye to their veteran outfielder (who, it should be said, helped them to two World Series championships over the last seven seasons), it’ll cost them the remaining balance on his $18.5 million salary for 2018.