Happy Tuesday everyone, here's my Top 5 for February 28, 2012 from Len Berman at www.ThatsSports.com.
1. Quick Hits
- Matt Kenseth wins the most bizarre Daytona 500 in history.
- Let the bidding begin. The St. Louis Rams are expected to trade their #2 pick in the NFL draft.
- Magic Johnson reportedly heads one of seven groups selected to advance in the bidding to buy the Dodgers.
- Red Sox captain and catcher Jason Varitek is expected to announce his retirement today after 15 years in the majors.
- Yawn. The NHL trade deadline has come and gone.
2. I See Fire I See Rain
Where to begin. The first rainout in Daytona history led to the first two-day race. When it had ended early Tuesday morning, there had been a two-hour delay because a car had crashed into a jet dryer truck which was cleaning the track. That resulted in a huge fire and fuel spill. Danica Patrick's race effectively ended on the second lap with a crash, although she later limped back and finished 38th. Brad Keselowsky was the winner, on Twitter. He actually tweeted from inside his car (not while driving kids.) He started the night with around 65,000 followers ending up with over 200,000. As for the real race, he finished 32nd. It's a race that will long be remembered, even if the winner isn't (Matt Kenseth.) They don't call it the Great American Race for nothing.
3. The State of the Mets
It can't be easy for Mets owner Fred Wilpon to face the media, but he did it yesterday. A couple of things of note. He said he was being honest a few years back. "When I said three years ago that the Mets weren't affected by the [Bernard] Madoff thing, I was telling the truth -- I know you don't want to hear it -- because we weren't sued then." And he was asked "Is selling this team in your vocabulary?" He answered, "As long as I can, I plan to be the owner here." The near future will bring a lot more clarity to the Mets financial situation. Several minority partners are lined up and the Madoff mess is finally nearing its day in court. And Fred's son did hand out "underdog" tee shirts for the players. So that's a start.
4. Drink Up
The great baseball clubhouse alcohol controversy rages on. Tampa Bay Rays manager Joe Maddon will allow beer in the clubhouse. "For me at the end of the day, I'd much prefer our players making good decisions, and if you're of legal age, and the game is over, and you've sweated and lost a bunch of pounds and you want to sit down and have a beer, I see nothing wrong with that." Pretty mature approach. But then the zinger, "We're not the Boston Red Sox." You gotta love the American League East.
5. Respecting History
For the 100th anniversary of the sinking of the Titanic on April 15th, the Potomac Nationals have an interesting ballpark promotion. Women and children will be allowed into the ballpark first, 15 minutes before the men. No word if the Nationals feature a sinkerball pitcher.
Happy Birthday: Race car driving great Mario Andretti. 72.
Bonus Birthday: Actor John Turturro. 55.
Today in Sports: Pitchers Sandy Koufax and Don Drysdale begin their joint holdout against the Dodgers. 1966.
Bonus Event: A sad day indeed. Mr. Ed, the talking horse from the TV show went to that great stable in the sky. 1979.
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