Albert Pujols crushed his 40th home
run, and that gave him 100 RBIs for the season. By reaching that
plateau he joins the likes of Joe DiMaggio, Al Simmons and Ted
Williams as the only players in baseball history to reach 100 RBIs
in their first four seasons of action. By the way, the three players
I just mentioned all happen to be in the Hall of Fame!
And how about the pick-off play the
Cards executed yesterday! With the Buccos threatening in the sixth
with two on and only one out, Cards catcher Mike Matheny signaled
Jason Marquis that Pirate Rob Mackowiak was wandering too far off
from second base. Marquis spun around and fired a strike to second
base that nailed Mackowiak and probably ensured yet another Cardinal
This team is on pace to shatter
Cardinal records for most wins in a season. If memory serves, and it
rarely does, the '87 team had something like 95-96 victories, and
the '85 contingent came away with 101 wins. This 2004 edition has a
chance to shatter those marks.
struggle with Astros
The Chicago Cubs, on the other hand,
did not look much like a playoff team this weekend.
The Cubs were pummeled by the 'Stros in
about every category you can think of, including the scoreboard. And
after looking so bad this weekend, what was their reward? They are
STILL in first place in the wild card chase! Their favorable
schedule the rest of the way should make them a lock to stave off
San Diego, San Francisco and the rest of the pretenders.
fork in the White Sox
They have actually been dead for weeks,
it is just that no one has told them so. Once they got swept by the
Twinkies at home, the season was as good as torched!
Railers start season slowly
I missed the home opener for the first
time in years because we needed so much help out at the balloon
fest, but it sounds as if the Railers got the season off to a slow
start on Friday night. I don't think I understand the scheduling of
Mount Zion, but that's why I am only a would-be reporter. Hopefully
the Railers will get things turned around in a hurry.
Don't forget that the Lady Railers will
start their volleyball season this week as well.
Before the Athens games even began, the
U.S. States Olympic team hoped to win 100-plus medals, even though
they knew how tough that would be. They accomplished their goal.
More Olympic controversy appeared as
the leader in the men's marathon was tackled by some wacko in the
crowd. He bounced back up and did finish with the bronze. The
American claimed silver, giving the U.S. a medal in the event for
the first time in something like 20 years!
Though the Americans suffered a few
disappointments, overall they gave us many reasons to be proud.
There is something about training, living and competing in the land
of the free and the home of the brave! By the way, in case you
follow such things, NO American tested positive for ANY banned
[to top of second column in
College football under way
USC squeaked out a win over Virginia
Tech, which makes you realize what a great job Frank Beemer has done
out there. This week both Illinois and Illinois State will kick off
their seasons at home. On Thursday night ISU hosts the St. Xavier
Cougars, who were the MSFA co-champs last year in NAIA action. The
Illini will welcome the Florida A & M Rattlers to Memorial Stadium
on Saturday at 5 p.m.
of the week:
Art and balloon fest organizers,
volunteers and other a-sundry helpers… Even the weather cannot put a
damper on this wonderful event! Hats off to the chamber of commerce,
all organizations and to the many people who go out of their way to
welcome guests and visitors. It is just such an important event for
our community. Who knows who might be willing to invest, renovate or
build because of having a wonderful experience at one of our events.
Woody Austin won on the PGA Tour for
only the second time in his career. Stadler and Ochoa won the
Champions Tour and LPGA Tour respectively. Don't forget that the
State Farm Rail Classic returns to Springfield this weekend, and one
of Lincoln's favorites, Nancy Lopez, is scheduled to make a rare
Bee's Floral and Landscaping was the
site yesterday of the first annual Dash for Cash. Seventy-five
drivers raced radio-controlled electric and nitro cars around the
oval and around jumps, hairpin turns and long straightaways. Go on
out and check out the action on Friday nights, as the track opens at
6 and racing begins at 7. I believe that admission is free, but if
you or your kids get hooked on the cars, it may cost you a little
more than that!
play and true sportsmanship
Watching the Olympics the last couple
of weeks, I was reminded how much sportsmanship has disappeared in
just my lifetime. If someone on another team or from another country
has a superior performance, what is wrong with acknowledging that? I
am so grateful that my dad modeled AND taught us to applaud
outstanding feats and achievements no matter who accomplished them.
Events and games provide parents and grandparents a great
opportunity to teach these timeless principles. Does this mean that
I will have to stop booing Big Ten basketball officials? Ouch! I
guess it does!
OK… I am off
my soapbox and I am out of time. Have a great week, everybody!