- The Washington Times - Sunday, June 14, 2009

Read somewhere that Bill Belichick might get married again. As noncommittal as Bill is, though, it’ll probably be a wedding day decision.

•••

If you can’t make the ceremony, don’t worry. Something tells me Belichick will have it taped.

•••

The monosyllabic Patriots coach doesn’t strike me as a guy who has a lot of close friends. So if anybody’s starting a Guess Bill’s Groomsmen pool, put me down for: Bob Kraft, Jon Bon Jovi and a future second-round pick.

•••

Minister: “Do you take this woman to be your lawful wedded wife?”

Football coach: “As opposed to what, taking the wind?”

•••

You learn something every day. In a story about Trent Green’s retirement, Dick Vermeil said of the former Redskins/Rams/Chiefs/Dolphins quarterback: “For three years in a row, Trent had a 90 quarterback efficiency rating. He was the only quarterback in the league who did that at that time.”

Since coaches have been known to fudge statistics, I decided to check it out. My findings: Vermeil was actually understating things. Green had a rating of 90-plus for FOUR years in a row (2002 to ‘05, when he was playing for Dick in Kansas City) - a feat unmatched by any other quarterback over that stretch. In fact, only one QB posted more than two ratings of 90 or better (Peyton Manning, who had three).

Granted, it’s not an all-telling stat. There are other ways to judge a quarterback (such as, uh, wins and losses). But you have to admit, Trent had a nice career for himself - especially for a QB who threw barely 500 passes (510 to be exact) before the age of 30.

•••

Still, it’s kind of amusing that he’s being called a 15-year veteran. He didn’t get on the field in 1993, ‘95, ‘96 or ‘99 and launched but a single pass in ‘97. The way I look at it, he played a decade, basically, and wore a uniform another five seasons.

But, hey, he’s a 15-year man for pension purposes. You’ve gotta love that.

•••

It was a tough week for Our Airborne Friends. On Thursday, a low-flying gull got hit by a baseball and helped the Indians beat the Royals, and on Friday a tee shot in the LPGA Championship struck a bird, killing it “in a puff of feathers,” Reuters reported.

As if that weren’t enough, the Red Wings lost the Stanley Cup Finals and the Orioles are in a dreadful slump, dropping 10 of their last 12 going into Saturday night.

•••

Also, the last time I looked, the Blue Jays’ ace pitcher, Roy Halladay, was walking gingerly off the field with a groin injury.

•••

What’s next, an unfortunate encounter between a lawnmower and the San Diego Chicken?

•••

Thoughts on the passing of Woodie Held, American League utilityman of the ‘50s and ‘60s:

Held was one of those players who always showed up in my pack of baseball cards. I’m not privy to the exact figures, but I’ll bet the Topps people printed a million Woodies for every Mickey Mantle.

When you’re a kid, there are always players you accumulate incredible, shoebox-busting surpluses of, and Held was No. 1 for me - closely followed by Don Blasingame, Roman Mejias and Bobby Knoop. (I mean, if you packaged that aforementioned group in a four-for-one swap, you might have been able to swindle some unsuspecting second grader out of, oh, Vada Pinson, but that’s about it.)

•••

Trivia question: Held was one of just 11 players in major league history who… (fill in the blank). Answer below.

•••

Just for kicks - OK, I was desperate for another baseball note - I decided to find out who the most average pitcher in major league history is. According to my research, it’s a tie between Dennis Lamp (96-96 for the Cubs et al. from 1977 to ‘92, with three .500 seasons) and Roger McDowell (70-70 for the Mets et al. from 1985 to ‘96, also with three .500 seasons).

But look who’s tied for third: the Nationals’ new pitching coach, Steve McCatty (63-63 for the A’s from 1977 to ‘85, with records of 14-14 in ‘80 and 4-4 in ‘85).

•••

Did you hear Tim Donaghy, the disgraced NBA ref, was attacked by a fellow inmate during his stay in prison? Nothing much came of it, though. The inmate, apparently, had a foul to give.

•••

My 19-year-old says, “The warden probably downgraded it to a Flagrant One.”

•••

Wonder what provoked the attack. Did Donaghy “T” him up or something for failing to leave the exercise yard in a timely manner?

•••

Answer to trivia question: Held was one of just 11 players in big league history who were traded from the Senators to the Orioles. The others (in chronological order): Gil Coan, Albie Pearson, Clint Courtney, Ron Samford, Bob Johnson, Pete Burnside, Lou Piniella, Steve Herman, Pete Richert and Fred Valentine. Woodie spent only the 1965 season here, swatting 16 homers in 332 at bats.

•••

Good to know Jim Zorn and LaRon Landry, the Redskins’ OTA-resistant safety, are “on the same page” now.

Seriously, I haven’t been this excited since I saw the headline: “[Tiger] Woods commits to playing in AT&T National” - his own tournament.

•••

Speaking of “on the same page,” can you believe this textbook scandal at Alabama? I’m not talking about the scandal part, I’m talking about the textbook part. When have the words “Crimson Tide,” “probation” and “books” ever appeared in the same sentence?

•••

Some 125 athletes from 16 teams are said to have improperly obtained free books as part of their scholarships and given them to other students. Oh, great. Bama used to be known for its Million Dollar Band; now it’ll be known for its $40,000 Bookmobile.

•••

And finally…

The NCAA is forcing the Tide to vacate 21 football wins from 2005 to ‘07. On the plus side, the results of all the spring games will be allowed to stand.

LOAD COMMENTS ()

 

Click to Read More

Click to Hide