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Top 5 Sports Stories

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Happy Wednesday everyone, here's my Top 5 for August 1, 2012 from Len Berman at www.ThatsSports.com.

1. Quick Hits

  • The U.S. women's gymnastics team takes home the gold for the first time since 1996.
  • Michael Phelps wins two more medals. His 19 Olympic medals is the all-time record.
  • Britain won its first gold medal today in women's pair rowing.
  • The Texas Rangers picked up Cubs pitcher Ryan Dempster at yesterday's trade deadline.
  • Pirates pitcher A.J. Burnett (13-3) had a no-hitter broken up by Cubs rookie pinch-hitter Adrian Cardenas with two outs in the 8th. Pittsburgh beat Chicago 5-0.
  • Star running back Silas Redd leaves Penn State for USC.

2. By the Numbers

Are you a numbers person? Then you'll like this. The Bahamas, Chile, Algeria, Georgia, Israel, Lithuania and Venezuela, just to name a few, have won fewer medals than Michael Phelps in the history of their Olympics participation. Maybe that'll help you put Phelps' accomplishment in perspective.

3. Finger Pointing

Everyone passes the blame... it's "not my fault." That's human nature. Happens in sports all the time. I hate that. Then there's U.S. Olympic gymnast John Orozco. He says he's to blame for the U.S. men finishing a disappointing fifth. He said "I did five events and botched two." In one way his remarks are refreshing. But I also hate to see one guy take it on his shoulders in a team sport. I guess I can't have it both ways.

4. Scandalous

The world of Olympic badminton is being rocked by scandal today. Four women's doubles teams have been disqualified for not trying in their matches. Four women from South Korea, two from China and two from Indonesia played lackluster matches which drew booing from the crowd. All the teams had qualified for the quarterfinals and were trying to lose on purchase to manipulate their seedings. In one match, the two teams kept serving into the net and they were jeered off the court. Heavy duty stuff in badminton. Silly us. We were paying too much attention to swimming and gymnastics.

5. It's Only Business

Top 5 subscriber H.S. sent along this great picture that he took on his cell phone. It was before Ichiro Suzuki's home debut with the Yankees. And he writes, "As you can see there were a few of his fans waiting for him. Not only have the Yankees acquired a true all-star but they may also sell a few extra tickets and some extra merchandise." You mean there were business implications considered by the Yankees with Ichiro? Shocking.

Happy Birthday: 3-time Super Bowl champ, Oakland wide receiver Cliff Branch. 64.

Bonus Birthday: Jerry Garcia of the Grateful Dead would have been 70 today.

Today in Sports: Mr. October, Reggie Jackson, is enshrined in Cooperstown. 1993.

Bonus Event: Clang Clang. The first cable car began operating in San Francisco. (According to our crack Top 5 research staff, some claim it was actually August 2). 1873.

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