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Tampa Bay Rants And Raves



In the aftermath of Florence


There’s something about the month of September. We remember our college classes being cancelled the day after Labor Day by hurricane threats three of the four years we were there. And last year, your heart was warmed when you saw Duke and other power trucks heading south down I-75. This year, you hated that it had to be done, but your heart was again warmed by the sight of trucks rolling north to help our neighbors in North and South Carolina. Things like this, tragic as they are, bring out the best in people.


Great Tampa Bay, politics and stuff:


1. After the Eagles game, the answer is yes. If you don’t know the question, you haven’t been following the Bucs’ drama all summer – and now fall.

2. The circus surrounding Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh makes you wonder why any well-qualified individual would ever choose public service. More on this in two weeks.

3. If Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein had a shred of decency or any sense of public spirit, he would step down. He apparently has neither.

4. Idle thought during this first full week of autumn. In Florida, you gauge the beginning of fall not by the temperature, but by the changing colors of the license plates.

5. You’ve lived in Clearwater a long time if your high school principal was Robert Glenn, your band director “Rocky” Yanetovich, your football coach Earl Brown,your hoops coach Jim Carr or your baseball coach softball Hall Of Famer Doug Mason.


Sports, the media and stuff:


6. Speaking of high schools (see #5 above), remember when you could open up the paper Saturday morning and see how your favorite school’s football team did the night before?

7. The Browns finally win a game and Bud Light installs coolers round town with 200 cans each that open upon the win. What possibly could go wrong?

8. As we come down the home stretch of the baseball season, a gem from Red Sox great Ted Williams: “the only thing dumber than a pitcher is two pitchers”. Unless, of course, the pitcher’s last name is Maddux.

9. Sixty years ago this summer, a couple of brothers opened a pizza joint in Kansas of all places. Today, Pizza Hut is, by far, the biggest pizza chain in America.

10. In our next to last review of each franchise’s best players (see back story TBRR 3/25/18), we turn to the Chicago White Sox. Starting with pitching – at 5’10”and 160 pounds, he wouldn’t get a second look today, but the crafty Billy Pierce won 186 of his over 200 wins with the Sox. And after much thought, we are declaring a tie for the best White Sox player in the modern era –two Hall of Famers - the Big Hurt, Frank Thomas and the diminutive Nellie Fox – two guys as different as can be, but both huge cogs during their playing days with the Pale Hose.

(And this week only) 11. The Braves are back!


Dude, if you can’t show the game until the end, don’t show it


We’re all jacked up by a Bucs’ win over the Super Bowl champs, and here comes another game with two powerhouses, the Vikes and Packers tied, headed for overtime. Fox breaks in and announces due to NFL rules, they can’t continue to show it. For older football fans, it was a flashback to the Heidi game back in ’68 when the Raiders scored twice in the final minute to rally past the Jets. But NBC broke away before the end to broadcast the movie Heidi leaving most of their viewers to find out what they missed the next morning in the sports section. Don’t tease us; either carry the game to the end or not at all.

Up Next: Achmed Walled’s postseason picks; best of the Yanks; 60s’ biggest hit



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