⦿ Sunday Links

Some late evening links while watching the NLCS. Much lower stress than watching the ALCS, that’s for sure!

While we’re on the subject, Joe Posnanski used the classic Royals and Orioles teams of the 1970s as a jumping off point for this fine piece.

Going all the way back to 1977

Let’s switch from one of the greatest sports writers of the current age to a profile of one of the greatest beat writers in the history of modern sports. This is a phenomenal look at the career of Bob Ryan, who pretty much created the job of the modern NBA beat writer.

How crazy is it that he and Peter Gammons started at the Boston Globe on the same day? Two men who set the standard for everyone that followed them, at one paper, with the same start date. Amazing.

The Commissioner

I just discovered the site Thank You Based Ball this week thanks to these two wonderful posts. It is written by Eireann Dolan, girlfriend of Oakland A’s reliever Sean Doolittle.[1]

First was her “response” to the Men’s Health article that allegedly helps dudes talk to their lady friends about sports. I haven’t read the original article, just the blowback against it. But I think this response is just terrific.

How to Talk to Women About Sports

Then came this piece about the fallout of Oakland’s loss to the Royals in the Wild Card game. Her accounting of Doolittle’s life is interesting enough. But seeing how his friends and supporters reacted when some half-wits began calling him out on Twitter after blowing the save opportunity in the Wild Card game will reaffirm your faith in humanity.

I didn’t know much about Doolittle before. But I’m a fan now.

Sean Doolittle Appreciation Day

100 craft beers every beer lover should drink? Yes, I believe I will, thank you!

You probably don’t know this, but Prince released two new albums two weeks ago. One is a proper solo album, one is basically him and his current band playing together with others on vocals for most of the tracks. I listened to a little of the solo album but lost interest midway through.

Listen, I love Prince. He is on my Mount Rushmore of favorite musicians of my life. His 1982–1987 was as good as any run in pop music ever. But I just don’t find his new music interesting. And these albums even got solid reviews.

Coincidentally this popped up last week and seemed timely. It is writer Chris Heath’s accounting of his efforts to interview Prince before his Diamonds and Pearls album came out in 1991. Which, by the way, was the last Prince album I really liked.

The Man Who Would Be Prince

Finally, you may have heard that the wonderful Jan Hooks, who spent many years on Saturday Night Live, died late last week. She was in that era where there weren’t any huge breakout stars, but a whole cast of top-notch performers.[2] She had few memorable characters, but was always fun to watch, especially when she and Phil Hartman joined forces.

This sketch is a hidden gem of her career. I don’t know if a host other than Alec Baldwin could have pulled it off. It’s so great. We used a bastardization of the “It makes you look cheap!” line on our college answering machine once.

  1. Holy Irish couple!  ↩
  2. Yes, Mike Myers was on during her run. But his breakout came late in her time on the show. And Dana Carvey might have been the most recognizable actor on the show, but he never really broke out.  ↩