- The Washington Times - Sunday, October 28, 2001

Until Shaun Hill had that pass picked off near the end of the first half the one that was returned for the tying score I really thought Maryland might keep the dream alive at Florida State.


So Ralph Friedgen's Terrapins have one more mountain to climb the Seminoles at College Park next season. They'll get there, folks.

With those sunglasses and that big floppy hat, Bobby Bowden looks like the Man With No Eyes in "Cool Hand Luke."

In case you're wondering, part one: The second-place finisher in the ACC is slated to go to the Gator Bowl (to face the No. 2 team from the Big East). The third-place team is penciled in for the Peach Bowl (against a Southeastern Conference opponent), and the fourth-place team figures to play in the Jeep Seattle Bowl (vs. an also-ran from the Pac-10).
Maryland vs. Virginia Tech (or Syracuse) in the Gator. Not a bad consolation prize. (That is, if the Terps don't wind up in one of the BCS bowls.)

The Redskins square off against the Giants today at FedEx Field, and the big question on everybody's mind, of course, is: Did Angie Harmon make the trip?

In case you were wondering, part two: Terry Metcalf and new Redskin Eric Metcalf are the third father-son duo to play for the club. Preceding them were Frank Walton (1944-45) and Joe Walton (1957-60) and the two Joe Krakoskis Joe A. (1961) and Joe J. (1986).

Joe Walton, by the way, is now happily ensconced at Robert Morris College, leading the Division III Colonials to football glory. He's been the coach there for eight seasons, longer than his tenure with the New York Jets (1983-89).

Does anyone seriously doubt that Barry Sanders could gain 100 yards tomorrow if he decided to come back?

News item: The WBC strips Australian super middleweight Anthony Mundine of his ranking for making "absurd" comments about the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks (e.g. the United States has only itself to blame).
Comment: If sports are going to start punishing athletes for making "absurd" comments, we might run out of athletes.
Bonus comment: It's a good thing Mahmoud Abdul-Rauf (a k a Chris Jackson) isn't in the NBA anymore. (He's the misguided soul who wouldn't stand for the national anthem a few years back because: (a) it conflicted with his Muslim beliefs; and (b) he considered the American flag a symbol of "tyranny and oppression.")

Wish my old buddy Mo Siegel was around for this World Series. He'd probably have some great stories to tell about the time the Yankees trained in Arizona in the spring of '51, to be exact.

In fact, I can practically hear him now: "One of their owners, Del Webb, was from Phoenix," he'd rasp. "Big construction guy. Built the Flamingo Hotel in Las Vegas for Bugsy Siegel and later bought the Sahara. Those were the days when the cocktail waitresses in the casinos would keep bringing you drinks, free drinks, as long as you kept your right arm busy [translation: as long as you were gambling].
"Anyway, Webb was from out there and Casey Stengel had a house in [suburban] Glendale. So one year Del made a deal with Horace Stoneham of the Giants, and the Yankees went to Phoenix [the Giants usual spring base], and the Giants went to St. Petersburg [Fla., where the Yankees traditionally trained]. That was DiMaggio's last season, you know and Mantle's first. When Mantle connected … boy, that ball would just carry and carry in that light Arizona air …"

An AP story last week referred to Randy Johnson and Curt Schilling as "the most lethal left-right combination since Sandy Koufax and Don Drysdale … in the '60s." By "lethal," I suppose the writer meant that the two Diamondbacks aces strike out a lot of batters 665 between them this season. But who the heck cares about "lethal"? Strikeouts are just window dressing, anyway. What about "best"? What's the best lefty-righty combination since Koufax and Drysdale?
It's too early to anoint Johnson and Schilling; they've barely been together a year. Let me just point out that the Lethal Boys were a mere 9-10 in the last two months of the 2000 season (after Curt came over from the Phillies in a trade). At any rate, here are the lefty-righty combos they should be measured against, the best since Koufax and Drysdale:
Best over a two-year span: Mickey Lolich and Denny McLain, Tigers, 1968-69. Posted a 91-35 record with Lolich, the lesser half, adding three more victories in the '68 World Series to help Detroit upset St. Louis. Cy Young Awards: one (McLain in '68).
Three years: Dave McNally and Jim Palmer, Orioles, 1969-71. Five 20-win seasons (Palmer, the slacker, managed only a 16-4 mark in '69) and one Series title.
Four years: Vida Blue and Catfish Hunter, A's, 1971-74. Went 155-77, with two Cys (one each) and three Series championships.
Five years: Mike Cuellar and Jim Palmer, Orioles, 1969-73. Averaged 40 victories a season. Cys: two (one each). Rings: one.
More than five years: Tom Glavine and Greg Maddux, Braves, 1993-2001. The gold standard. Their 313-143 record during this stretch is better than Lefty Grove's career mark of 300-141. Cys: four (three of them Maddux's). Alas, just one Series win.

Speaking of lefty-righty combos:
1. Jerry Koosman and Tom Seaver weren't nearly as good as I remembered. They really had only one great season together '69, when they posted a 42-16 mark, won three games in the Series (in which the Mets beat the O's) and Seaver took the Cy Young.
2. Steve Carlton and Bob Gibson were on the same staff in St. Louis for several years (1965-71), but Lefty wasn't quite Lefty yet.
3. The last lefty-righty pairing to both notch 20 victories: Mike Hampton (22-4) and Jose Lima (21-10) for the Astros in '99.
4. Other one-season wonders: John Tudor (21-8) and Joaquin Andujar (21-12), Cardinals, 1985; Ron Guidry (25-3) and Ed Figueroa (20-9), Yankees, 1978; Wilbur Wood (22-13) and Stan Bahnsen (21-16), White Sox, 1972; Lolich (25-14) and Joe Coleman (20-9), Tigers, 1971; and how quickly they forget Claude Osteen (20-15) and Bill Singer (20-12), Dodgers, 1969.

When Ted Leonsis spent $77 million on Jaromir Jagr, I don't think 1-0 losses to Atlanta, of all teams was what he had in mind.

And finally, only in the NBA, the league that gave us the Utah Jazz, could we have the Memphis Grizzlies. I mean, if the NBA had a team called the Anchorage Sled Dogs and it moved to Sarasota, it would still be called the Sled Dogs.

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