Random notes from a slow week:
UK FANS SHOULDN’T take rumors about John Calipari’s interest in the NBA lightly. At the same time, you have to know what to believe and, just as importantly, what not to believe.
A working rule: Any time rumors involve the Clippers, ignore them.
Monday’s Chicago Tribune report that William Wesley – known as World Wide Wes because nobody in the world actually knows what he does for a living – is shopping LeBron James and John Calipari. The report said Wesley reached out to the Bulls, Nets and Clippers.
And if this deal is all about money, why not include any team under the NBA umbrella and see what you can get thrown your way? You never know.
But the Clippers? Just like fans of the other 29 NBA teams, UK fans need not worry about the Clippers.
The fact that Wes would theoretically have to approach the Clippers and let them know why a James/Calipari tandem would be good for them … that should tell you all you need to know about the Clippers.
If Calipari wants a new challenge – say, that of coaching the most unathletic NBA All-Star in history, Chris Kaman – let Wes keep shopping. But assuming that’s not the case, stick to the old rule: Don’t worry about the Clippers.
SOME PEOPLE KNOCK baseball because its fans and writers take too much to quirky stats that even a lot of baseball people don’t understand. But Sunday at Cliff Hagan Stadium, I saw something I had never seen, and Wikipedia won’t have to explain it to you.
The Cats played LSU and won thanks to a Marcus Nidiffer eighth-inning grand slam. UK’s Logan Darnell got the win; he pitched the final 1 2/3 innings. But LSU pitcher Zach LaSuzzo got nailed with the loss in accordance with the rules, but not with common sense.
LSU starter Austin Ross pitched great. When he left, LSU was up 4-2 with no outs in the eighth. But he left runners on first and second. Paul Bertuccini relieved Ross and threw to one batter, who was retired on a successful sacrifice bunt. Then LaSuzzo came in.
He threw one pitch, which hit UK’s Lance Ray. Ray took his base, and LSU coach Paul Mainieri came right back out and pulled LaSuzzo. LSU closer Matty Ott came in and gave up the grand slam to Nidiffer, the first batter he faced.
The deciding run was scored on the grand slam when Ray crossed the plate, so LaSuzzo got the loss.
His line: 0.0 innings pitched, no hits, no walks, no at-bats, one run. One pitch, one loss. It was his first decision of the season.
After the game, Nidiffer (a senior) answered questions about the grand slam, which came in his final home at-bat. In accordance with baseball tradition, he was given the shaving cream pie during interviews.
UK Athletics blogger Eric Lindsey caught in on his Flip cam. The pie-to-the-face itself isn’t all that great; what’s funny about the video is you can see the pie-er, backup catcher Luke Maile, running at full speed all the way down the outfield line. He comes out of the bullpen around 1:50. (And kudos to Lindsey for seeing it all happen and not bailing out on his question.) Maile never broke stride, either. He headed directly to the autograph table.
And if you’re interested in reading more about Sunday’s game, I covered it for the Baton Rouge Advocate.
J.B. HOLMES IS ON THE VERGE of overtaking the last man not named Tiger to hold golf’s No. 1 world ranking. Vijay Singh dropped to No. 51 in this week’s rankings; it’s the first time he’s been outside the top 50 since 1992. Holmes is No. 52.
Last time Singh was this low, Holmes was 10 years old and had already played two years on Taylor County High School’s varsity golf team.