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Top 5 Sports Stories

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Happy Monday everyone, here's my Top 5 for October 8, 2012 from Len Berman at www.ThatsSports.com.

1. Quick Hits

  • What home field advantage? Of the eight baseball playoff games so far the visiting team has won six. Only Detroit has won at home leading Oakland 2-0. Cincinnati leads the Giants 2-0. The Yankees and Washington lead 1-0 in their best of five series.
  • Terry Francona will be introduced as the new Cleveland Indians manager today.
  • Colorado Rockies manager Jim Tracy resigned.
  • In the NFL, the Atlanta Falcons are the only 5-0 team, Houston can join them tonight with a win over the Jets.
  • New Orleans won its first game beating San Diego 31-24 as quarterback Drew Brees broke Johnny Unitas' record, throwing a touchdown pass in his 48th consecutive game.
  • Indianapolis stunned Green Bay 30-27. Team owner Jim Irsay said he was bringing the game ball to ailing coach Chuck Pagano who has been hospitalized with leukemia.

2. Upon Further Review

Could it have been any other way? The very first one-game wild card playoff, and there's a controversial call in Atlanta. The game was protested and a near riot broke out. And this with 6 umpires instead of the usual 4. It involved the infield fly rule. And inevitably it will lead to calls for more instant replay. But do you really want replay determining judgement calls? Boundary lines fine, I'll grant you but that's about it. J.M. wrote on Facebook at "Len Berman's Top 5," "Maybe it's time for MLB to paint an 'infield fly line' on the field. Inside the line, invoke the rule. Outside the line, live ball and play on." Now we can have fun with replay. Did the infielder have his a foot on the line?

3. Giveaways

So they give you free stuff to get you to come to games, bobbleheads, baseball bats and key rings. Why don't they just throw around cash? That's what Georgia State did at their football game Saturday against New Hampshire. At halftime, they rained down $10,000 in cash on about 400 students. (It was really vouchers to be cashed in at the local credit union). Amazingly, nobody got hurt, and it didn't seem to boost attendance. Winning a few games might help the gate as Georgia State lost to New Hampshire 44-21 and dropped to 0-6. Maybe next time just pay fans to show up.

4. The Democratic Process

If fans don't like the general manager of the MLS Seattle Sounders they can fire him, just by voting. No really. The team is allowing their season ticket holders to vote thumbs up or thumbs down on general manager Adrian Hanauer. Sounds like a game-show no? Well the Sounders are co-owned by The Price is Right host Drew Carey. Fans have voted on team management for Spanish soccer teams, Barcelona and Real Madrid. And this could start a trend. What sports fans really want to do is vote on coaches and players. Then again, they wouldn't mind getting to vote on an owner or two. Let's have the fans make all the decisions. It would turn a sports franchise, into one giant sports radio talk show. Good times.

5. Perfecto

I never tire of telling this story. We would run from elementary school when we were dismissed and head to the local bar a block away. We weren't allowed inside, so we would lean in and ask the World Series score and then race home to watch the end of the game. On one sunny October afternoon there was nobody sitting in the bar. (It wasn't until years later until I wondered who would be sitting in a bar on a weekday?) Anyway, we leaned in and asked the score and the bartender told us the game was over, Don Larsen had pitched a perfect game. I turned to my buddy and asked, "What's a perfect game?" Time of game, two hours and six minutes. The only perfect game in World Series history, 56 years ago today.

Happy Birthday: That noted golfer in Caddyshack, Chevy "Be the ball" Chase. 69.

Bonus Birthday: The kid on Two and a Half Men, August T. Jones. 19.

Today in Sports: Don Larsen pitches a World Series perfect game. 1956.

Bonus Event: KDKA radio in Pittsburgh had the first live broadcast of a football game as West Virginia played Pittsburgh. (Pittsburgh won 21-13 at Forbes Field). 1921.

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