Top 5 Sports Stories

TGIF everyone, here's my Top 5 for August 5, 2011 from Len Berman at

1. Quick Hits

  • NFL players ratify the new agreement with owners. It includes random testing for HGH.
  • Fun times in Miami, where Tiki Barber worked out for the Dolphins and coach Tony Sparano said "I can't rule anything out," when asked about Brett Favre.
  • Tiger Woods shot a two-under 68 at the Bridgestone Invitational in Akron, his first PGA action in three months. He's six shots behind first round leader Adam Scott. Ironically, Scott is using Tiger's ex-caddie Steve Williams.
  • Bring it on. The Yankees open a series in Fenway Park tonight with the two teams tied for first place. Isn't that the way it should be?
  • A baseball signed by Joe DiMaggio and kissed by Marilyn Monroe is sold at auction for nearly $60,000.

2. Neon Deion

The Pro Football Hall of Fame opens its doors for the class of 2011 tomorrow. Among the inductees, Deion Sanders. When he showed up at Yankees spring training in 1989 in Fort Lauderdale I interviewed him in the dugout. I asked him which he liked better, baseball or football? He mumbled something about baseball. I asked him to repeat it. I thought he said, "Baseball is more metal." Later, in the edit room, we realized he said "mellow." Can you imagine Deion being so soft-spoken that I couldn't make out what he was saying? We won't have that problem tomorrow.

3. A Little Quiet, Please

The ballpark has become a menagerie. What with scoreboards making so much noise, and telling fans to get louder. So I have to applaud the Texas Rangers. They want to ban the wave. OK, not really, but they should. I've long felt that the wave outlived its cuteness the day it reared its ugly head. But the Rangers have a scoreboard warning. It says you can injure yourself doing the wave. And kids caught doing it will be sold to the circus. And doing the wave is only safe at football games and Miley Cyrus concerts. There's even a website, Hey ballparks have no smoking sections, how about "No Wave Zones?" Whoever thought of banning the wave, take a bow. But sit down doing it.

4. Friday eMailbag

In regards to the fan poll in which Derek Jeter tied Babe Ruth for "greatest Yankee of all time," D.S. writes, "This guy (Jeter) is Paul Molitor in pinstripes. To compare him to Babe Ruth and say he's 'better' than Joe D. or the Mick shows how stupid the public is and how the media and its adulation of Jeter is able to manipulate public opinion."

When I wrote about Thurman Munson on the 32nd anniversary of his tragic death, subscriber R.M. wrote that he was 10 years old at the time, "I remember crying my eyes out. 'THE Captain' inspired me to become a catcher, wear #15 and lead by example in baseball and in life."
And A.H. wrote about Munson, "He was the rare baseball player that played and acted more like a hockey player- tough as nails and he appreciated his good luck to be a major league player."

R.M. has Plaxico Burress on his mind. "My dream - have a job - get fired - go to jail - then get my same job back with a different company and get paid $3 million without having done a lick of work. I should have worked harder in high school sports instead of wasting all of my time with books."

With the minor league Jamestown Jammers wearing special "Lucy/Desi" jerseys to honor Jamestown's Lucille Ball on the 100th anniversary of her birth, D.P. writes, "In her honor, whenever a Jammer crosses the plate to score a run, he's required to announce: 'Lucy, I'm Hoooooome!'"

When I included a six-second video of Jets coach Rex Ryan explaining his leg tattoo, J.H. wrote, "I had a lot going on today so I didn't have the 6 seconds to check out Rex's new tat."

5. Spanning the World

This week's Spanning the World highlight involves an 11-year old named Jacob Resnick. He won a Kidscaster contest sponsored by the Mets broadcasting outlet, SNY. And wouldn't you know it, with Jacob at the microphone, Jose Reyes went deep.

My next Spanning the World appearance on NBC's Today Show will be next Thursday August 11th in the 8:30am half hour.

Happy Birthday: He hit that unforgettable homer in game 6 of the 1975 World Series for the Red Sox, paving the way for Carlton Fisk to hit his. Bernie Carbo. 64. And for current Red Sox fans, Carl Crawford. 30.
Bonus Birthday: The original moonwalker. Neil Armstrong. 81

Today in Sports: Harold Arlin calls the first play by play of a baseball game on KDKA radio in Pittsburgh, 90 years ago today. Most thought it would never catch on because it was "too boring." 1921.
Bonus Event: My kind of village, Chicago is. Catchy eh? The village of Chicago, population around 250, is incorporated. 1833.

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