"Lazzari's Sports Roundup" - - - - 6/18/11
I used to think that the most outrageous "weiner" I've ever come across was the ridiculous $7/$8 hot dog that I purchased at Yankee Stadium last summer. That all changed recently when I became aware of the disgraceful behavior exhibited by the embattled lawmaker of New York..........TRIVIA QUESTION: The 1992 Baltimore Orioles--who finished 89-73 under manager Johnny Oates--were led in RBI's by a player who drove in less than 500 runs during his 12-year career. Can you name this former outfielder? Answer to follow..........Did you know that the lowly 1985 Cleveland Indians had NO pitcher on the squad with more than NINE wins that season? Starters Neal Heaton and Bert Blyleven won nine apiece while Tom Waddell--used mostly in relief--won eight. The team finished with a record of 60-102 under manager Pat Corrales--dead last in the American League East..........Red Sox announcer Joe Castiglione--commenting last weekend after Toronto's Jason Frasor was removed from the game after allowing three earned runs in 0.2 innings of work (a phrase many sports fans have heard before): "Down goes Frasor"..........ITEM: Oklahoma City Thunder guard Nate Robinson is cited for urinating in public in White Plains, NY; police spotted him relieving himself on a sidewalk near a bookstore around 2 AM. Question: If I'm a resident of that NYC suburb, do I want my future tax dollars to go to providing more Porta-Potties in town or do I want the public works department to clean the sidewalks more often?..........Question to Red Sox fans: Yes, dealing with/waiting out rain delays this year hasn't been fun. But if you're watching on NESN, doesn't a LOT of the frustration totally disappear when the lovely Heidi Watney gets more air time?..........My Monday Night Sports Talk co-host Tony DeAngelo made a good point recently--saying that when 59-year-old (his given age) pitcher Satchel Paige faced 20-year old Tony Conigliaro back in 1965, it had to be the greatest pitcher/batter age disparity in the history of major league baseball. Can't disagree, Tony; unless staged as a promotional event, this probably won't happen again. But the MOST interesting thing about that memorable day so long ago? Paige could still get batters OUT at the time--pitching three scoreless innings that day.........."Raven" Update: My good friend Robert "Raven" Kraft of Miami Beach, well, he just keeps on going. One of the top "streak runners" in the country, the man has now run his daily, 8-mile route in South Beach for approximately 13,300 CONSECUTIVE days--which translates to a total of over 106,000 miles. To put that in perspective, folks, that's approximately FIVE TIMES the distance around the WORLD. Keep runnin', Raven--you're one amazing individual..........Following last weekend's series vs. Toronto, Red Sox outfielder Mike Cameron was hitting around .160. Well, if a big league batter is considered awful if he can't hit his weight--and Cameron weighs about 210--then Cameron has a long way to go just to be considered a BAD hitter at this juncture..........Answer to trivia question: MIKE DEVEREAUX--who drove in 107 runs that year and finished his career with a total of 480 RBI's..........Happy birthday wishes go out to former major league catcher Doug Gwosdz--who blows out 51 candles on June 20th. Drafted by the Padres in the 2nd round of the 1978 amateur draft, Gwosdz appeared in just 69 games for San Diego between 1981 and 1984. His lifetime batting average? .144--which translates to a staggering total of 56 points BELOW the famed "Mendoza Line" that baseball fans are so familiar with. In 104 lifetime at-bats, Gwosdz could muster just 15 hits; hey, at least he can tell his grandchildren that one of those base knocks was a home run, right? I'm not sure what was more difficult during the man's playing days: Gwosdz getting a hit or fellow players trying to pronounce his NAME. In any case, best wishes for many more birthdays to come, Doug..........Finally, I'd like to thank everyone for the many expressions of condolences following the recent death of my father; the response has been incredibly overwhelming. I only wish that more of my readers could have experienced the opportunity of meeting such a HUGE sports fan--one whose true passion was baseball. Yes, he's now buried along with a ball and glove; to Bob Lazzari Sr., those items would provide more comfort than the world's most cushioned feather pillow or memory foam mattress. There's a lot wrong with baseball now (and sports in general), but each time a game comes on the tube from now on, I'll always think of "Big Bob"--and that's a GOOD thing. Miss you dearly, Dad.