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Bleacher Views

First to last

If you missed The Kentucky Derby, you didn’t just miss the hats, the dresses, the mint juleps and the rain, you also missed a piece of history.
For the first time ever, an objection posted by the number two finisher was upheld and a 65-1 horse, Country House, won the Derby after one of the favorites, Maximum Security, was disqualified.

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Kentucky Derby Day

Over the years, I have come to know some people from Louisville, Ky., and have learned that, to them, Derby Day, in the rota of holidays, resides rather north of The Fourth of July and only slightly south of Christmas itself.

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The jalapeño of life

If variety is the spice of life, then competition should be its jalapeño pepper; and there is no better competition than an historic, geographic and downright dirty rivalry.
A rivalry is built on both respect and hate. Respect is necessary in that one cannot get really worked up about an enemy that can’t fire back, and there are few things sadder than a once blooming competition that has been lost because one side is now incompetent.

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Sin and Redemption in sports

Sports fans and sports columnists love to see sports as a morality play. “May the better player win” is an idea that takes sports out of the realm of play and drops it squarely into the arena of metaphysics. Better does not mean “more skilled” or “more able”; it means “more pure of heart” or more “noble of intent.” 

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NCAA women battle it out courtside: Champions indeed

If you missed the NCAA Women’s Championship game pitting Baylor University against Notre Dame, you really missed something special. It was a game of ebbs and flows, elation and heartbreak, courage and luck — pretty much everything you could ask for in a basketball game.
Just as is always the case, though, the game was really about people, and I would like to highlight two special players.

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It’s all about March Madnezz…

There are several things to note about the mostly unloved month of March. The lion it comes in with hangs around far too long. Early season baseball is almost as miserable as late season baseball. Reasonable golf is still a month away. And the NCAA tournament is the only thing around to help real spring get started.

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Batting practice, worth saving

I have just finished an article that explained why traditional batting practice is disappearing among the major league teams. It seems that it doesn’t have the statistically significant results that are now required of all practices, not just batting practice, at the major league level.

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If it’s not always fair…

Soon after they master Momma and Dadda, it seems toddlers learn to say, “It’s not fair,” especially around bed time. All kids feel they are struggling against an unfair universe that expects them to go to school; take baths; and play by the rules set by teachers, parents and the kid next door. It’s just not fair.

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Tom Terrific, a master on the mound

I have just read that Tom Seaver, one of the greatest pitchers of all time, is retiring from public life due to dementia. This disease has taken from us a seemingly ever increasing number recently, and it is a disease that exacts a terrible toll on the patient, the family and all those who love and respect the sufferer.
Dementia is infamous for robbing the patient of memory and then finally of life. It attacks the mind, the citadel of who we are, and Tom Seaver was something special indeed.

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Finally, spring baseball is in the air

I grew up playing baseball in Maine. Now, Maine summers are known for their gentle winds, moderate temperatures and cool nights. In other words, perfect baseball weather, as any number of tourists could tell you.

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