Happy Thursday everyone, here's my Top 5 for July 15, 2010 from Len Berman at www.ThatsSports.com.
1. Quick Hits
* The British Open is underway on the Old Course at St. Andrews. Scores are low in benign conditions. Rory McIlroy the early leader with a stunning 9 under 63.
* The All Star break is over with 7 games on the schedule tonight.
* The Yankees list charities in New York and Tampa, if you care to donate in George's name.
2. No Stars
So why aren't American sports fans in love with the All Star Game anymore? Tuesday's night's TV rating was the worst ever. Want some reasons? Perhaps baseball is over-exposed. Every game, everywhere, is on the air, on the computer. Inter-league play is no longer a novelty. With free agency, players jump from league to league. Where's the rivalry? And maybe we just don't have as many star players as we think we have. All that, and it sounded like a library Tuesday night. I'm not in favor of "Vuvuzela Night," but a little excitement would be nice. And try this on for size. The World Cup soccer final had a higher rating, and it was played in the afternoon. What does that say for our National Pastime?
3. A Matter of Opinion
Longtime Boston Globe sportswriter Jack Craig passed away the other day at the age of 81. He was the first newspaper TV sports critic. I remember a couple of months into my new sportscasting job in Boston in 1973, awaking to a Sunday Globe headline, "Berman off to a slow start." Gee, I thought I was doing OK. Pure and simple, nobody likes to be criticized. Doesn't matter if you're in the public eye. Try it sometime. Tell somebody you don't like something about him. You think he'll say, "why thank you so much?" More likely it would be "go f-yourself." Craig wondered in print if "Catholic Boston" could accept a Jewish sportscaster. He received flak for that, but I always thought it was a legitimate question. I may not have always agreed with Jack, but I was always interested in what he had to say.
4. Lights... Camera...
Alex Rodriguez is hitting the big screen. He'll be filming Friends with Benefits on his off days. The movie stars Justin Timberlake and Mila Kunis. The next time A-Rod fails in the clutch, I can just hear The Boss bellowing from the heavens.
"Knock off this Hollywood crap Rodriguez. I'm paying you to act like a ballplayer!"
OK, I've seen some pretty goofy video in my day, but this one is right up there. Just your basic story of a referee being run over by a runaway golf cart on a football field in Springfield, Oregon.
The story involves a 2-year old and of course a lawsuit.
Now That's Sports!
Happy Birthday: Former wrestler and governor, Jesse "The Body" Ventura. 59.
Bonus Birthday: Singer Linda Ronstadt. 64.
Today in Sports: The first no-no. George Washington Bradley of the St. Louis Brown Stockings no-hits the Hartford Dark Blues. 1876.
Bonus Event: I'll drink to that. Alcoholics Anonymous comes to Great Britain. 1948.
Follow Len Berman on Twitter: www.twitter.com/lenbermansports