Monday’s 6-pack, Quote, Quiz of the Day

Monday’s baseball info is posted. 
Monday night NFL info is posted.

Monday’s 6-pack:
— Royals 6, Astros 5— Houston has lost 9 of last 12 games.
— Rangers 9, Mariners 8— Texas sweeps the three-game series.
— Padres 12, Cardinals 2— Juan Soto went 3-5 with four RBI.
— Arizona 7, New York 1— Zac Gallen tossed six shutout IP.
— Reds 4, Pirates 2— TJ Friedl homered, knocked in three runs.
— Phillies 5, Mets 2— Nick Castellanos hit his 29th home run.

Quote of the Day
“Obviously that was embarrassing … I’m at a loss for words. Every once in a while in the NFL you get your butt kicked, but this was different.”
Sean Payton, after Sunday’s 70-20 loss in Miami

Monday’s quiz
Which current NFL head coach was a replacement player for the Chicago Bears during the 1987 NFL players’ strike?

Sunday’s quiz
San Diego hosts the Holiday Bowl every December.  

Saturday’s quiz
Jose Canseco was the first major leaguer to hit 40+ home runs and steal 40+ bases in the same season, in 1988. 

Monday’s Den: Wrapping up an NFL Sunday

Chargers 28, Vikings 24
— WR Allen caught 18 balls for 215 yards, also THREW a 49-yard TD pass.
— Vikings had ball on Chargers’ 6-yard line in last 2:00, didn’t score.
— Under Staley, Chargers are 6-2-1 ATS as a road underdog.
— Chargers scored 34-24-28 points in their first three games. 

— Vikings lost first three games, by 3-6-4 points.
— Minnesota was 11-0 LY in games decided by 8 or less points.
— Cousins was 32-50/367 passing, with three TD’s.
— Jefferson caught seven passes for 149 yards and a TD.

Colts 22, Ravens 19 OT
— Kicker Matt Gay kicked FG’s of 31-54-53-53-53 yards.
— His 4th 50+-yard FG of the day ended the game in OT. 
— Colts are 10-5 ATS in last 15 games as a road underdog.
— Moss carried ball 30 times for 122 yards.

— Ravens lost two fumbles on their first four drives.
— Jackson ran 14 times for 101 yards and Ravens’ only two TDs.
— Baltimore defense has allowed only three TD’s on 34 drives.
— Under is 9-1 in their last ten home games. 

Packers 18, Saints 17
— Saints led this game 17-0 at halftime.
— QB Carr hurt his shoulder; backup Winston was 10-16/101 passing.
— Saints ran punt back 76 yards for their second TD.
— Saints’ first three games (2-1) were decided by total of five points.

— Packers in first half: 27 plays, 116 yards, no points.
— Packers in second half: 41 plays, 228 yards, 18 points.
— Saints in second half: 30 plays, 121 yards, no points.
— Saints missed a 46-yard FG with 1:05 left.

Lions 20, Falcons 6
— Detroit outgained the Falcons, 358-183.
— Atlanta ran ball 20 times for only 44 yards.
— Under Smith, Falcons are 5-8-2 ATS in games coming off a win.
— Under is 9-2 in their last 11 games overall.

— Goff threw a 45-yard TD pass for Detroit’s first TD.
— Detroit held the Falcons to 3.1 yards/pass attempt.
— Under Campbell, Lions are 13-9 ATS in games coming off a loss.
— Under Campbell, Lions are 25-11-1 ATS, 5-2 as home favorite.

Browns 27, Titans 3
— Tennessee ran 45 plays for only 94 yards.
— Derrick Henry carried ball 11 times for 20 yards.
— Tennessee has lost nine of its last ten games.
— Under is 8-2 in Titans’ last ten road games.

— Cleveland had 23 first downs, Titans had six.
— Watson was 27-33/289 passing, with two TD’s.
— Opponents have converted only 8-41 third down plays.
— First three games, Cleveland outgained opponents 1,099-501.

Texans 37, Jaguars 17
— Houston led this game 17-0 at halftime.
— Leading 17-10, Texans ran kickoff back 85 yards for a TD.
— Houston has now won 10 of last 11 series games (8-3 ATS)
— Last 2+ years. Houston is 6-1 ATS in AFC South road games.

— Jaguars in first half: 33 plays, 158 yards, two missed FG’s, no points.
— Texans were 9-15 on third down, Jaguars were 5-13.
— Jacksonville is only 11-37 on third down in three games.
— Jaguars are 12-24-1 ATS in last 37 games coming off a loss.

Patriots 15, Jets 10
— New England outgained the Jets, 358-171.
— Patriots were 8-19 on third down, Jets 2-14.
— Patriots’ only TD was a 58-yard pass to Pharaoh Brown.
— New England is 6-2-1 ATS in last nine games as a road favorite. 

— Last 5+ years, Jets are 5-12 ATS in AFC East home games.
— First three games, Jets averaged 4.7/5.0/3.4 yards/pass attempt.
— Last two games, Jets are 3-24 on third down.
— Wilson is 8-16 as an NFL starter.

Dolphins 70, Broncos 20
— Miami won its first three games, scoring 36-24-70 points.
— Dolphins scored TD’s on eight of their first nine drives.
— Miami averaged 13.4 yards per pass attempt.
— since 2020, Dolphins are 11-4 ATS as a home favorite.

— Miami had TD plays of 54-79-67-69 yards.
— Dolphins gained 726 yards on 71 plays. 726 yards!!!!
— Miami ran ball for 350 yards, threw for 376 more.
— Russell Wilson is 4-14 as the Broncos’ QB. 

Bills 37, Commanders 3
— Bills in first half: 39 plays, 212 yards, one TD, three FG’s.
— Buffalo led 16-0 at halftime.
— Bills are 13-6-1 ATS in last 20 games on natural grass.
— Bills converted 21-41 third down plays in two games. 

— Commanders were 1-9 on third down, Buffalo was 9-15.
— Washington turned ball over 4 times on 10 drives.
— Under is 12-4 in Washington’s last 16 games.
— Washington kicked 51-yard FG in last 2:00 to avert shutout. 

Seahawks 37, Panthers 27
— Carolina ran ball only 14 times, for 44 yards.
— Panthers were 10-19 on 3rd down, Seattle 3-13.
— In three games, 0-3 Carolina has been outscored, 56-31 in 2nd half.
— Backup QB Dalton was 34-58/361 passing, with two TD’s.

— Seahawks in first half: 41 plays, 208 yards, four FGs (12 points)
— Seahawks in 2nd half: 31 plays, 213 yards, 3 TDs and a FG (25 points)
— Seattle gave up 984 passing yards in its first three games
— Seahawks won eight of last ten series games.

Chiefs (1-1), Bears (0-2) @
— Chiefs led this game 34-0 at halftime; TV took it off the air at that point.
— Bears are 9-28 SU/12-23-2 ATS the last 2+ years.
— Chicago averaged 3.5 yards/pass attempt.
— Fields is 5-23 SU as an NFL starter- they have a problem with him.

— Chiefs in first half: 46 plays, 318 yards, four TD’s, two FG’s.
— Kelce caught seven passes for 69 yards and a TD.
— KC had 12 penalties for 94 yards LW, only 3-15 in this game.
— Chiefs are 10-2 ATS in last 12 games vs NFC opponents.

Cardinals 28, Cowboys 16
— Arizona is 1-2, but led all three games at halftime.
— Cardinals in first half: 35 plays, 288 yards, 2 TD’s, 3 FG’s.
— Conner ran ball 14 times for 98 yards and a TD.
— Prater kicked a 62-yard FG with 0:04 left in first half.

— Dallas had five drives of 56+ yards, but scored only one TD.
— Cowboys were in red zone four times in second half, scored 6 points.
— Cardinals ran ball for 222 yards, were 5-10 on 3rd down.
— Dallas is 28-46 on third down in its three games.

Steelers 23, Raiders 18
— Steelers picked off three passes, were +3 in turnovers.
— Pickett averaged 7.9 yards/pass attempt.
— Pittsburgh is 7-2-1 ATS in last ten games coming off a win.
— Pitt is 27-14-1 ATS in last 42 games when spread was 3 or fewer points.

— First three games, Raiders scored 17-10-18 points.
— Raiders are 11-14 ATS in last 25 games when spread was 3 or fewer points.
— Last three years, Las Vegas is 10-15 ATS in games coming off a loss.
— Since 2017, Raiders are 10-12 ATS as a home favorite.

Sunday’s Den: Wrapping up a college football Saturday…….

— Florida State 31, Clemson 24 OT
Seminoles end 7-game losing skid vs Clemson.
Clemson missed a 29-yard FG with 1:45 left in regulation, with score 24-all.
Tigers outgained Florida State 429-311.

— Ohio State 17, Notre Dame 14
Buckeyes scored on 1-yard TD run with 0:01 left.
Game-winning drive was 65 yards, took 1:26.
Ohio State converted 10-17 third down plays.

— LSU 34, Arkansas 31
LSU kicked 20-yard FG with 0:05 left for the win.
LSU also threw 49-yard TD pass with 0:30 left in first half.
Arkansas led game 13-3 in second quarter.

— Utah 14, UCLA 7
Utes scored on a pick-6 0:12 into the game.
UCLA didn’t score until there was 3:39 left in game.
Utah is 4-0, and their starting QB Rising still hasn’t played this year.

— Northwestern 37, Minnesota 34 OT
Minnesota led this game 31-10 after the third quarter.
Wildcats threw an 11-yard TD pass to tie game with 0:02 left.
Northwestern QB Bryant was 33-49/396 passing, with 4 TD’s.

— Indiana 29, Akron 27 OT
Each team had ball four times in overtime.
Akron tied game on a 71-yard TD run with 3:34 left.
Hoosiers were favored by 16.5 points.

Upsets of the Week:
Central Michigan (+16) 34, South Alabama 30
Northwestern (+11) 37, Minnesota 34 OT
West Virginia (+6) 20, Texas Tech 13
Arkansas State (+6) 44, Southern Miss 37
Georgia State (+4.5) 30, Coastal Carolina 17

Word of the Day: Jocularity— causing lighthearted laughter and amusement.

— Oregon 42, Colorado 6
Game was 35-0 at halftime.
Oregon QB Nix was 28-33/269 passing, with two TD’s.
Colorado ran 58 plays for 199 yards; they had 106 penalty yards.

— Central Michigan 34, South Alabama 30
Jaguars upset Oklahoma State in Stillwater last week, then went home and got upset here.
Chippewas scored winning TD on a 4-yard run with 0:13 left.
South Alabama led 14-0 after the first quarter.

— Texas State 35, Nevada 24
Nevada led 17-0 at half; they had a 98-yard pick-6.
Texas State outgained the Wolf Pack, 574-353
Both teams turned ball over three times.

— Marshall 24, Virginia Tech 17— Thundering Herd was favored at home, but it is still a bad look for an ACC team to lose to a Sun Belt team.

— Alabama 24, Ole Miss 10
Ole Miss led 7-6 at halftime.
Rebels were 3-14 on third down, 3-4 on fourth down.
Alabama QB Milroe was 17-21/225 passing, with a TD. 

— Washington State 38, Oregon State 35
Wazzu led 35-14 after three quarters.
Coogs’ QB Ward was 28-34/404 passing, with four TD’s.

TV people played the Bill Withers’ song, Just the Two of Us, as the game went to a commercial, in reference to these schools being left behind by the rest of the Pac-12. 

Saturday’s Den: Wrapping up a busy Friday…….

— Braves 9, Nationals 6— Ronald Acuna is the first player ever to hit 40+ home runs, steal 60+ bases in the same season. 

— Brewers 16, Marlins 1— Milwaukee scored 12 runs in the second inning, clinching their fifth playoff spot in six years.

Christian Yelich hit two homers and a double, knocked in five runs.

— Phillies 5, Mets 4 (10)— Alec Bohm had the walk-off single in the 10th inning, after the Mets tied the game in the ninth, on a Brett Baty home run.

Mets are only fourth team ever to finish under .500, the season after they won 100+ games.

— Rangers 8, Mariners 5— Rookie Evan Carter hit a 3-run homer as Texas takes over first place in the AL West.

— Royals 7, Astros 5— Houston is 3-7 in its last ten games; Kansas City has won eight of its last nine games— they’re 52-102 but still competing.

Astros are hanging on by a thread to the last playoff spot in the AL.

— New York 7, Arizona 1— Aaron Judge hit three homers, knocked in six runs.

— Padres 4, Cardinals 2— San Diego has won eight games in a row; they’re not totally out of the playoff picture yet.

Manny Machado hit two home runs for the Padres.

— Word of the Day: Annihilate— totally destroy or obliterate.

— Football Trend of the Day: Last two years, Tennessee Titans are 12-5 ATS coming off a win.

— NC State 24, Virginia 21
State QB Armstrong played four years at Virginia; he returned Friday and got a win.
Wolfpack kicked a 33-yard FG after two unsportsmanlike conduct penalties on Virginia gave NC State excellent field position.

— Wisconsin 38, Purdue 17
Badgers led 21-3 at halftime.
Wisconsin converted 12-18 third down plays.

— Boise State 34, San Diego State 31
Aztecs lost a fumble on the 1-yard line on their first possession, missed a 40-yard FG when game was 17-17.

— Air Force 45, San Jose State 20
Air Force outscored the Spartans 28-0 in the second half.
Flyboys ran the football for 403 yards.

— Seven starters are out for the Ravens this week; they host the Colts, who 40 years ago called Baltimore home. Rookie QB Richardson is out for the Colts; Gardner Minshew gets the nod under center.

— Andy Dalton will start at QB for Carolina when they visit the Seahawks Sunday; two of the three rookie QB’s who started in Week 1 are hurt already, and Houston QB Stroud has been put on an “arm management program” which probably means he has a sore arm already. 

Friday’s Den: Random stuff with the weekend here…….

49ers 30, Giants 12
— Giants have been outscored 63-6 in first half of their three games. 
— Big Blue averaged only 3.5 yards/pass attempt.
— Under is 17-9 in their last 26 road games.
— Daniel Jones is 23-34-1 as an NFL starter.

— San Francisco scored 30-30-30 points in winning first three games
— SF is 8-1 ATS in their last nine games as a home favorite.
— 49ers outgained Giants 441-150.
— Giants were 3-12 on third down, 49ers were 9-16.

Georgia State 30, Coastal Carolina 17
— Georgia State won first three I-A games, scoring 41-35-30 points. 
— Last 3+ years, Panthers are 10-4 ATS as a road underdog.
— Last 4+ years, Chanticleers are 9-13 ATS as a home favorite.
— Georgia State ran ball for 182 yards, converted 9-15 on third down. 

— Broncos visit Miami Sunday; Dolphins’ new defensive coordinator is Vic Fangio, who was Denver’s head coach from 2019-21, going 19-30 in three seasons, when he didn’t have Elway, Manning or even Russell Wilson as his QB.

— Which reminds me, NFL coordinators make a boatload of $$$, don’t deal with the media much, their job is just football. I’m wonderful if coordinators are ever happy just to do that job, as opposed to becoming a head coach, where the job is more diverse, the $$$ is bigger, but maybe the job isn’t as much fun and is more aggravating.

Probably not often, but I’m guessing it has happened once or twice.

— Looks like the qualifying offer for potential free agents in baseball will be around $20.5M this winter; teams offer the potential free agent $20.5M and if he turns it down, that team gets a compensatory draft pick when he signs with a different team. 

Of the last 124 players in this situation, only 13 took the qualifying offer.

— Summer flew by; NHL training camps opened this week.

— Word of the Day: Oblivion— A state of unawareness of what’s going on around you.

— Football Trend of the Day: Last 5+ years, Clemson is 30-13-1 ATS in ACC games.

— First two weeks in the NFL, new head coaches have lost nine of ten games.

— Carolina Panthers’ QB Bryce Young hasn’t practiced the last couple days, looks like Andy Dalton will get the start Sunday in Seattle.

— NC State plays at Virginia Friday, where Wolfpack QB Brennan Armstrong will see a lot of old friends; Armstrong played for Virginia the last three years, starting 30 games.

— Mets’ OF Tim Locastro has an unusual stat line; in his career, Locastro has been hit by 42 pitches, but he’s only walked 36 times.

— Rays 5, Angels 4
Tampa Bay scored twice in bottom of 9th; Manuel Margot had the game-winning hit.
Rays trail Baltimore by 1.5 games in the AL East, but have clinched a playoff spot.

— Dallas Cowboys’ CB Trevon Diggs tore his ACL, is out for the year.

— Louisville Cardinal football players helped victims of a car crash that happened Monday near L&N Stadium- they turned over a car that had flipped during the accident. There were no serious injuries in the accident. 

Thursday’s Den: Doing some thinking out loud……..

— Chicago Bears have lost 12 games in a row, dating back to last year; things are getting tense in the Windy City.

QB Justin Fields characterized his play as “robotic”; when he was asked why, he answered:

“You know, could be coaching, I think. At the end of the day, they are doing their job when they are giving me what to look at, but at the end of the day, I can’t be thinking about that when the game comes. I prepare myself throughout the week, and then when the game comes, it’s time to play free at that point. Thinking less and playing more.”

Fields is 5-22 as an NFL starting QB; if he doesn’t win some games soon, he won’t have to worry about playing like a robot— he won’t be playing.

— Bears’ defensive coordinator Alan Williams quit so that he can focus on his health; no idea what that means specifically, but hopefully he feels better soon.

— Of the 32 NFL quarterbacks who started last week, they represent 27 different colleges; Alabama is the only program with three alumni in that group (Tagovailoa, Mac Jones and Bryce Young). Jalen Hurts also played at Alabama, before finishing has career at Oklahoma.

— There are 61 Australian punters scattered around the country in college football this season.

— Standings in the AL West, with 11 days left in the regular season:

Astros 85-68
Mariners 84-68
Rangers 84-68

Right now, Seattle/Texas are tied for the last Wild Card slot, a game behind Toronto. Going to be a hell of a last week; a deserving team is going to get left out of the playoffs.

— In the National League, Cubs lead Miami by half a game for the last Wild Card slot, with the Reds another half-game behind that. Arizona is 1.5 games ahead of the Cubs.

— Word of the Day: Bupkis— this word means absolutely nothing; it comes from the Yiddish word bobkes, meaning nonsense or nothing.

— Football Trend of the Day: Los Angeles Chargers are 8-17-7 ATS in last 32 games with spread of 3 or fewer points.

— So far this season, NFC teams are 6-0 against AFC teams.

— Last time the Orioles made the playoffs was 2016; from what I can tell, only guy who was in the 2016 starting lineup for those Orioles and is still in the major leagues is Manny Machado.

— There are 37 unbeaten teams left in college football.

— Astros 2, Orioles 1
Baltimore led 1-0 after seven innings behind P Kyle Bradish.
Jeremy Pena tied the game with an RBI double in the 8th
Mauricio Dubon won the game with a walk-off single to right field.

— There is a tight end with the Miami Hurricanes who is in his 8th year of college eligibility; he had been sidelined for three years with a broken ankle, and he recently petitioned the NCAA for a ninth year of eligibility.

His career totals include 20 catches for 197 yards and four touchdowns; maybe he just really, really likes going to college for free.

— LA Rams basically gave RB Cam Akers to the Vikings; the teams exchanged a 6th/7th round draft pick in 2026 in exchange for Akers, that’s it.

— Diamondbacks’ OF Corbin Carroll is the first rookie in MLB history to hit 25 home runs and steal 50 bases in a season; granted the new rules make stealing bases easier, but 25-50 in still a damn good achievement. 

Wednesday’s Den: Mid-week musings……..

— This is interesting: Toronto Blue Jays pitcher Yusei Kikuchi says he usually goes to bed around 11:00 p.m. and wakes up at 1 p.m, the night before he pitches.

He left with cramps during Tuesday’s game and says it may be because he only got 11 hours of sleep Monday night before instead of his usual 13-14 hours.

— Florida State is a 2.5-point road favorite at Clemson this week. Tigers have been favored in their last 46 home games; 2016 was last time they were a home underdog.

— Football coaches take different paths to the top of their profession; there are guys who are good coaches who never even played at a high level. Other were substitute players who learned from their coaches, then became coaches themselves.

Lions’ offensive coordinator Ben Johnson seems like he is really good at his job; he was a walk-on QB at North Carolina in his college days- he graduated from UNC with a degree in math and computer science.

His career path since then:
2009-10— Boston College, grad assistant
2011— Boston College, tight ends coach

2012— Miami Dolphins, offensive assistant
2013-15— Miami Dolphins, assistant QB coach, TE coach
2016-17— Miami Dolphins, assistant WR coach
2018— Miami Dolphins, WR coach

2019— Detroit Lions, quality control coach
2020-21— Detroit Lions, tight ends coach
2021— Detroit Lions, passing game coordinator
2022— Detroit Lions, offensive coordinator

He’s going to be a head coach in the NFL soon; for Jared Goff’s sake, hopefully not too soon.

— Padres 2, Rockies 0
Xander Bogaerts snapped a scoreless tie with a walk-off home run.
Blake Snell no-hit Colorado for seven innings.

— Marlins 4, Mets 3
Brandon Nimmo tied game in 9th with a 2-run double.
Jake Burger ended game with a walk-off single in bottom of 9th.

— Cubs 14, Pirates 1— Alexander Canario hit a grand slam, his first big league homer.

— Orioles 9, Astros 5
Austin Hays hit two homers for the Orioles.
Houston is only 38-39 at home.

— Dodgers 3, Tigers 2— Max Muncy hit a walk-off single in ninth inning.

— Word of the Day: Aficionado— a person who is very knowledgeable and enthusiastic about an activity, subject, or pastime.

— Football Trend of the Day: UNLV is favored by 2.5 points at Texas-El Paso this week; since 2005, the Rebels are 3-10 ATS as a road favorite.

— Los Angeles Kings/Arizona Coyotes are bringing NHL hockey to Australia this week, playing in Rod Laver Arena, usually a tennis venue.

— Was weird Monday night seeing Cleveland QB Deshaun Watson getting two facemark penalties on offense— you just don’t see that a lot.

— Is Reds 1B Joey Votto going to be a Hall of Famer? 17 years in the majors, all in Cincinnati, the guy has a career on-base %age of .410, an OPS of .921, which is really good. 356 career home runs, but he played home games in a small ballpark. It’ll be an interesting discussion.

— Giants outscored Arizona 31-8 in the second half of their comeback win Sunday; the Giants’ best eight plays of the game, which all gained 15+ yards, all came on first-and-10.

— In their first two games, Chicago Bears gained total of five yards on nine plays on their first drive of the third quarter. Chicago’s opponents have gained 164 yards on 20 plays on their first drive after halftime, scoring TD’s on both drives.

— On their first drive of each half so far, Dallas Cowboys have driven 72-75-75-55 yards, scoring two TD’s, kicking two FG’s. Their opponents have gained 48 yards on 24 plays, giving up a TD to Dallas on a blocked field goal.

— This is the 58th year of the Super Bowl era; during that time, there have been 33 teams who in their first two games of a season:

Scored 50+ points.
Didn’t turn the ball over in either game.

Of those 33 teams, the 2023 Chargers are the only team that started out 0-2. 

Tuesday’s Den: Nobody asked me, but…….

Saints 20, Panthers 17
— Saints’ defense has allowed one TD on 22 drives this season.
— New Orleans outgained the Panthers, 341-239
— Mobile backup QB Hill ran ball nine times for 75 yards.
— Last 2+ years, under is 11-6 in Saints’ road games.

— Carolina scored 8 points with 1:16 left to cover/push spread, depending on your number.
— Panthers averaged only 3.9 yards/pass attempt.
— In two games, Carolina has scored only 2 TD’s on 22 drives.
— Panthers are 9-28 on third down in their first two games.

Steelers 26, Browns 22
— Pittsburgh scored two defensive TD’s as they even their record at 1-1.
— Cleveland outgained the Steelers, 408-255
— Pickens caught a 71-yard TD pass that put Steelers ahead 16-11.
— Steelers won five of last six series games.

— Watson threw a pick-6 on the first play of the game.
— His fumble was returned for game-winning TD with 6:58 left.
— Browns lost star RB Chubb with a knee injury.
— Cleveland is 1-6 ATS in last seven visits to Pittsburgh.

— Browns are 4-4 in Deshaun Watson’s starts; they were 30-31 in Baker Mayfield’s starts. Why didn’t they keep Mayfield? He makes hell of a lot less $$$ than Watson.

—  Mayfield has played for seven offensive coordinators the last six seasons, which is a lot.

— So far this NFL season, road teams are 19-13 SU.

— In his brief NFL career, Bengals’ QB Joe Burrow is 1-7 in Weeks 1-2, 23-12-1 in all the other games.

— Odd Stat: Denver Broncos lost the last nine games when they led at halftime.

— Cardinals 1, Brewers 0
Adam Wainwright gets his 200th career win.
Willson Contreras homered, for the game’s only run.

— Orioles 8, Astros 7
Baltimore scored three runs in top of the ninth.
Ryan O’Hearn went 5-5, with two RBI.

Orioles clinched their playoff spot Sunday, their first playoff bid since 2016

— Word of the Day: Kerfuffle— a disturbance or commotion caused by a dispute/conflict.

— Football Trend of the Day: Baltimore Ravens are 4-10 ATS in last 14 games as a home favorite.

— Vanderbilt is the only college football team that is 0-4 against the spread this year.

— Most people agree that Angel Hernandez is a bad umpire; he sued MLB because they didn’t make him a crew chief, when he should be thanking them for not firing him.

Last week in Pittsburgh, Hernandez called 34 pitches strikes in a Nationals-Pirates game; 12 of those pitches were actually balls. A 65% accuracy rate on called strikes? Freakin’ Helen Keller could come close to that.

— Tampa Bay Rays are going to announce plans for a new stadium that will seat around 30,000 and cost over $1.2B to build— it is expected to open in 2028.

— This past weekend, Cincinnati Reds played the Mets in New York; Reds’ manager David Bell is the grandson of Gus Bell, who played in 30 games for the original New York Mets in 1962.

— Speaking of the Reds, their CF TJ Friedl is cousins with Kentucky basketball coach John Calipari.

— Minnesota Twins’ IF Royce Lewis has hit 16 home runs in his first 69 major league games; five of those home runs were grand slams.

— Maui Classic basketball tournament in November will be played in Honolulu this year, at the Stan Sheriff Center; the arena where it is usually played in Lahaina is being used as a center to help Maui’s recovery from the terrible damage they have from the wildfires this summer. 

— Alabama started Jalen Milroe at QB in their first game; they started Tyler Buchner in their second game, then replaced him with 3rd-stringer Ty Simpson.

This week, Alabama is going back to Milroe at QB for their game with Ole Miss. 

Monday’s Den: Wrapping up an NFL Sunday…….

Commanders 35, Broncos 33
— Washington is 2-0 for the first time since 2011.
— Wilson threw 50-yard Hail Mary TD pass at 0:00; tying 2-point play failed.
— 2nd-year QB Howell is 3-0 as an NFL starter
— Since 2018, Washington is 19-10-1 ATS coming off a win.

— Denver’s first three drives: 17 plays, 226 yards, 20 TD’s.
— Denver rest of game: 39 plays, 194 yards, 13 points.
— Second week in row a missed PAT proved costly.
— Broncos lost their first two games, by total of three points.

Seahawks 37, Lions 31
— Seahawks drove 75 yards on nine plays for game-winning TD in OT.
— Lockett caught 8 passes for 59 yards, two TD’s.
— Seattle scored a TD on its first drive of both games this season.
— Last 10+ years, Seattle is 33-23-3 ATS coming off a loss.

— Goff threw pick-6; Seattle led 31-21 with 8:14 left.
— Next two drives, Lions ran 16 plays, gained 105 yards, 10 points, tied game.
— Over is 22-10-1 in Detroit’s last 33 home games.
— Over is 12-2 in NFL games so far this weekend. 

Titans 27, Chargers 24
— Last three games that counted, Chargers scored 30-34-24 points, lost all three.
— Chargers lost first two games this season by total of five points.
— WR Allen caught 8 passes for 111 yards, two TD’s.
— Bolts are 8-17-7 ATS in last 32 games with spread of 3 or fewer points.

— Chargers tied game with 0:03 left on a 33-yard FG.
— Titans drove 38 yards, kicked 41-yard FG in rain for the OT win.
— Tennessee was 6-13 on third down, Chargers 2-14 (3-3 on 4th down).
— Last 2+ years, Titans are 9-5-1 ATS in games with spread of 3 or less points.

Giants 31, Cardinals 28
— Giants trailed this game 20-0 at halftime.
— Giants in 1st half: 26 plays, 76 yards, no points.
— Giants in 2nd half: 42 plays, 350 yards, 31 points.
— QB Jones was 26-37/321 with two TD passes.

— Cardinals’ first six drives: 46 plays, 341 yards, 28 points.
— Cardinals’ last four drives: 17 plays, 48 yards, no points.
— QB Dobbs is now 0-4 as an NFL starter.
— Cardinals lost their first two games by total of seven points.

Falcons 25, Packers 24
— Falcons drove 66 yards to kick game-winning 25-yard FG with 1:01 left.
— Atlanta outgained the Packers, 446-224.
— Falcons ran ball 45 times for 211 yards.
— Home side won last seven series games.

— Packers’ first two drives of 3rd quarter: 10 plays, 143 yards, two TD’s.
— Packers’ three drives rest of game: 10 plays, 7 yards, no first downs.
— Green Bay was 9-16 on 3rd down last week, 3-9 this week.
— Last 2+ years, Packers are 1-7-1 ATS on artificial turf.

Colts 31, Texans 20
— Colts scored 2 TD’s on Richardson’s 3 drives, then he left (concussion)
— Backup QB Minshew is better than he is (19-23/171 passing, with a TD)
— Colts scored a TD on four of their first six drives.
— Indianapolis is 6-1-1 SU in last series games.

— Opponents are 14-27 on 3rd down so far this season.
— WR Collins caught 7 passes for 146 yards and a TD.
— Texans are 16-24-1 ATS in last 41 games coming off a loss.
— Last 4+ years. Houston is 5-8 ATS in AFC South home games.

Buccaneers 27, Bears 17
— Down 20-17, Fields threw an awful pick-6 with 2:12 left.
— Fields is 5-22 SU as an NFL starter.
— Tampa Bay outgained the Bears 437-236.
— Last 2+ years, Chicago is 5-11-1 ATS as a road underdog.

— WR Evans caught six passes for 171 yards and a TD.
— First three drives: 27 plays, 197 yards, 10 points and a blocked FG.
— Last four years, over is 18-13 in Tampa Bay home games.
— Tampa Bay has outrushed opponents 193-108 in two games.

Bills 38, Raiders 10
— Buffalo ran 74 plays for 450 yards; Raiders ran 39 plays for 240 yards.
— Raiders were 3-7 on third down, Bills were 7-13.
— Las Vegas is 4-14 ATS in last 18 games on artificial turf.
— Over is 7-1 in last seven series games.

— Buffalo scored five TD’s on their eight drives.
— Josh Allen was 31-37/274 passing, with three TD’s.
— Bills are 13-8-1 ATS in last 22 games as a home favorite.
— Last four years, Bills are 12-6 ATS coming off a loss. 

Chiefs 17, Jaguars 9
— Chiefs’ first four drives: 19 plays, 81 yards, 2 turnovers, no points.
— Chiefs’ next two drives: 14 plays, 131 yards, 14 points.
— Mahomes was 29-41/305 passing, with two TD’s.
— KC won last eight series games (6-2 ATS).

— Jaguars didn’t score a TD, kicked three FG’s on 11 drives.
— Chiefs had 12 penalties for 94 yards, Jaguars 2 for 10.
— Two games this season, Jaguars are 6-24 on third down.
— Under is 14-3 in their last 17 home games. 

Ravens 27, Bengals 24
— Ravens’ last two drives of first half: 22 plays, 102 yards, two FG’s.
— First two drives of second half: 16 plays, 137 yards, 14 points.
— First two games, Ravens converted 17-29 on third down.
— Baltimore has allowed two TD’s on opponents’ 19 drives this season. 

— Bengals’ first TD came on an 81-yard punt return.
— Cincy’s first offensive TD this season came on their 19th drive.
— First two games, Bengals averaged 2.0/5.1 yards/pass attempt.
— First two games, Cincinnati was outgained 765-434. 

49ers 30, Rams 23
— San Francisco ran for 159 yards (347 yards/two games).
— Moody’s 57-yard FG put SF up for good, 20-17.
— 2nd-year QB Purdy is 9-1 as NFL starter.
— Since beginning of LY, 49ers are +19 in turnovers (minus-15 in 2020-21)

— Rams’ first three drives: 32 plays, 198 yards, 17 points.
— Rams rest of game: 49 plays, 164 yards, 6 points.
— Rookie WR Nacua caught 15 passes for 147 yards.
— 49ers won nine of last ten series games. 

Cowboys 30, Jets 10
— Jets’ only TD was a 68-yard pass from Wilson to Wilson.
— Jets in second half: 22 plays, 68 yards, 4 turnovers, no points.
— Under Saleh, Jets are 4-8 ATS in games coming off a win.
— Under Saleh, Jets are 6-9 ATS as a road underdog.

— Cowboys were 9-18 on third down, Jets were 1-10.
— Last 2+ years, Dallas is 19-7 ATS as a favorite.
— Dallas outgained first two opponents, 647-386.
— Cowboys outscored first two opponents, 70-10.

Dolphins 24, Patriots 17
— Mostert ran ball 18 times for 121 yards, 2 TD’s.
— Tua Tagovailoa is 5-0 against New England.
— Dolphins in first half: 35 plays, 232 yards, 17 points.
— Opponents are 16-30 on third down this year.

— New England is 0-2 for the first time since 2001.
— Patriots averaged only 4.3 yards/pass play.
— Last 3+ years, Patriots are 3-7 ATS as a home underdog.
— Since Brady left, NE is 25-27 SU in regular season, 0-1 in playoffs.

Don’t forget, there are two Monday night NFL games tonight.

Sunday’s Den: Wrapping up a sports Saturday…….

— Missouri 30, Kansas State 27
Mizzou kicked a 61-yard FG at the gun, longest FG in SEC history
K-State was 8-17 on third down, Mizzou 3-13
Luther Burden III caught 7 passes for 114 yards and 2 TD’s.

I’m from Albany, NY; 50+ years ago, there was a great high school basketball player here, Luther (Ticky) Burden— he played in the ABA and NBA. I’m wondering if this is his grandson.

— Colorado 43, Colorado State 35 OT
This game ended at 2:25am here in the East.

Colorado (-23) drove 98 yards for game-tying TD with 0:36 left.
Colorado QB Sanders threw for 348 yards and four TD’s.
Colorado State QB Fowler-Nicolosi threw for 367 yards and three TD’s.
Rams had 16 penalties for 176 yards; Colorado 10 for 86.

— UNLV 40, Vanderbilt 37
Vandy led this game 17-0 early in second quarter.
UNLV then scored the next 30 points.
Freshman QB Maiava came off bench, threw for 261 yards.
Rebels kicked game-winning 36-yard FG with 0:05 left.

— So far this season, SEC teams are 2-7 ATS away from home in non-conference games.

— Alabama 17, South Florida 3
This game was 3-3 at halftime; there was also a weather delay.
Alabama has used three different QB’s this season, a red flag.
Total yardage was 310-264; Bama completed only 10-23 passes for 107 yards.

— Florida State 31, Boston College 29
Seminoles led 31-10 with 2:00 left in 3rd quarter, held on for dear life.
BC was 8-19 on third down, Florida State 1-9. Eagles were 4-5 on 4th down.

— Upsets of the Week:
Miami OH (+14). 31, Cincinnati 24 OT
BYU (+8) 38, Arkansas 31
South Alabama (+7) 33, Oklahoma State 7
Army (+7) 37, Texas-San Antonio 29
FIU (+7) 24, UConn 17
I-AA Sacramento State (+7) 30, Stanford 23
Florida (+5.5) 28, Tennessee 16

— Word of the Day— Narcissist— Someone who has an unreasonably high sense of their own importance.

— NFL Trend of the Day— Since 2018, Steelers are 7-2-1 ATS as a home underdog.

— Louisville 21, Indiana 14
Cardinals stopped Indiana at the 1-yard line with 4:38 left to preserve their win.
Louisville led this game 21-0 at halftime.

ACC non-conference home favorites are 8-4 ATS so far this season.

— Georgia 24, South Carolina 14
Gamecocks led 14-3 at halftime.
Georgia outgained South Carolina 458-309.
Gamecocks were minus-2 in turnovers, had 11 penalties for 73 yards.

— Florida 29, Tennessee 16
Volunteers lost their 10th straight visit to Gainesville.
Tennessee had five false start penalties.

— Washington 41, Michigan State 7— If you’re betting games, read the papers; Spartans and Northwestern have programs in chaos, because their coaches got caught up in off-the-field stuff. Wager against these teams.

— Pac-12 non-conference favorites are 13-6 ATS this season.

— South Alabama 33, Oklahoma State 7— Red flag for a Big X team to lose by 26 points at home to a Sun Belt team. Jaguars outgained Oklahoma State 395-208.

— If the playoffs started today (they don’t):
NL: Braves, Brewers, Dodgers. Wild Cards: Phillies, Cubs, Cin/Ariz
AL: Orioles, Twins, Astros. Wild Cards: Rays, Rangers, Blue Jays

Saturday’s Den: Clearing out a cluttered mind……..

— There have been only three teams who started a season 0-2, then won the Super Bowl, so Week 2 is a pretty big game for teams who lost last week.

1993 Dallas
2001 New England
2007 New Jersey Giants…….those teams started 0-2, then won the Super Bowl

— Alabama is switching QB’s this week, going with Notre Dame transfer Tyler Buchner for their game against South Florida today. Jalen Milroe started the Crimson Tide’s first two games.

— Maryland 42, Virginia 14
Virginia led 14-0; Maryland’s first score was a 98-yard kick return for a TD.
Cavaliers turned ball over four times (minus-4); they’re 0-3 already.
Second week in row Maryland won after trailing 14-0.

— Army 37, Texas-San Antonio 29
Army ran ball for 254 yards, never trailed- it was 20-14 at halftime.
UTSA scored on a 46-yard Hail Mary TD pass on last play of first half. 

Army threw for 188 yards, averaging 10.4 yards/attempt.

— Air Force 39, Utah State 21
Flyboys led this game 32-7 at halftime.
Air Force ran ball for 344 yards, outgained Utah State 428-302
Air Force was 9-13 on third down, Aggies were 3-11

— This week in college football, there are no games between ranked teams, which means it’ll probably be a fun day filled with exciting games— just seems to happen like that,

— Word of the Day— Pundit— An expert who gives opinions on a topic.

— College Football Trend of the Day— Under Josh Heupel, Tennessee is 12-4 ATS as a favorite.

— Cincinnati Reds have had 16 of their players make their major league debut this year, the most of any team this season.

— Big part of the reason why the Baltimore Orioles have improved so much is that their pitchers are way better now, and moving the fences back at Camden Yards has played a big part in the pitchers having so much more confidence.

Whoever made the decision to move the fences back deserves a raise.

— Rockies 3, Giants 2
Giants led 1-0 in 8th inning but didn’t have a hit yet.
JD Davis got the Giants’ first hit in 9th inning, when SF went ahead 2-1.
Elehuris Montero tied game with single; throwing error allowed winning run to score.

— Arizona 6, Cubs 4
Brandon Pfaadt tossed 5.1 scoreless innings.
Gabriel Moreno went 4-4 for the Diamondbacks.

— Rays 7, Orioles 1
Zach Eflin allowed one run in 7 IP, on 84 pitches.
Manuel Margot went 3-4, with two doubles, two RBI

— If the playoffs started today (they don’t):
NL: Braves, Brewers, Dodgers. Wild Cards: Phillies, Cubs, Cin/Ariz
AL: Orioles, Twins, Astros. Wild Cards: Rays, Rangers, Mariners

Friday’s Den: Random stuff with the weekend here……..

Eagles 34, Vikings 28:
Down 10-7 in 2nd quarter, Viking WR Jefferson lost fumble on 1-yard line.
Jefferson caught 11 passes for 159 yards, but that was a huge play.
Vikings are 0-2, with seven turnovers (minus-6).
Vikings have run ball 26 times for 69 yards in two games; no bueno.

D’Andre Swift carried ball 28 times for 175 yards and a TD.
Total yardage in this game: Eagles 430, Vikings 374.
Under Sirianni, over is 13-5 in Eagle home games.
Jalen Hurts is 27-13 as an NFL starter.

— Amazon Prime shows these Thursday games; they have four former NFL stars sitting there doing their studio show, but they have Kirk Herbstreit as their game analyst— he never played in the NFL, plus he already has a full plate with his college football TV work.

Here’s a suggestion: Vikings-Eagles last night, have Randy Moss/Ron Jaworski in the TV booth. Next week, Giants-49ers; have Joe Montana/Lawrence Taylor in the booth. It would be an interesting experiment, bringing in retired stars from the teams playing that night.

— Boston Red Sox fired Chief Baseball Officer Chaim Bloom Thursday as the team stumbled toward a third last-place finish in Bloom’s four years running things.

Bloom traded star OF Mookie Betts to the Dodgers, for Alex Verdugo and some prospects who haven’t panned out. Boston also acquired SS Trevor Story, while letting Xander Bogaerts walk.

Red Sox were 267-262 in Bloom’s tenure; Boston is a big market team, but for some reason, they try to run the organization like Billy Beane’s A’s from Moneyball.

Bloom is still only 40 years old; he went to college at Yale, which qualified him to run a major league franchise in his 30’s. Another Ivy League nitwit bites the dust.

Here’s a hint: DO NOT TRADE great players; Mookie Betts is a great player. 

— Memphis 28, Navy 24
Memphis WR Watson caught 10 passes for 169 yards and a TD.
Navy ran for 299 yards; they also threw 20 passes— twenty!!!!
Both teams turned ball over twice.

— New Jersey Jets still have four primetime games left on their schedule, including a Week 17 game in Cleveland. Would the NFL flex out of those games, with Aaron Rodgers sidelined?

— Former NFL QB Andrew Luck is doing some schoolwork at Stanford these days; apparently he is also a volunteer assistant football coach at Palo Alto HS, near the Stanford campus.

— Word of the Day— Disingenuous— Giving the false appearance of being honest or sincere.

— College Football Trend of the Day— Last four years, Pitt Panthers are 11-1 ATS as a road favorite.

— Notable free agent pitchers this winter:
Blake Snell
Aaron Nola
Clayton Kershaw

Jack Flaherty
Lucas Giolito
Jordan Montgomery

Luis Severino
Julio Urias
Shohei Ohtani

— Rays 4, Orioles 3— Luke Raley’s 7th inning home run was a game-winner.

— Mets 11, Diamondbacks 1— Kodai Senga fanned 10 hitters in six shutout IP.

— Pirates 2, Nationals 0— Mitch Keller tossed eight shutout IP.

— Brewers 4, Marlins 2— Milwaukee leads NL Central by 4.5 games.

— Rangers 9, Blue Jays 2— Corey Seager went 3-4, with two runs scored, three RBI. 

Thursday’s Den: Doing some thinking out loud……..

— Braves 4, Phillies 1
Atlanta wins the NL East for the sixth year in a row.
Strider struck out nine hitters in 7 IP.

— Texas Rangers lost P Max Scherzer for the rest of the regular season after straining a muscle in his upper arm. He isn’t having surgery, could return to the playoffs, but it isn’t likely.

— Rangers’ 1st-round pick in this year’s draft was Wyatt Langford, an outfielder who has 27 RBI in his first 35 pro games, while playing for three different teams. He’s already up to the AA level, where he is 10 for his first 26 at the plate.

— Washington Nationals agreed to a multiyear contract extension with GM Mike Rizzo, who has been running the Nationals for 15 years now. Washington has already won 10 more games this year than they did all of last year, but they’re still likely to finish last for fourth year in a row, after they won the World Series in 2019.

— Aaron Rodgers gets hurt, and now the NFL Players’ Association wants the league to get rid of artificial turf. This, from NFLPA Executive Director Lloyd Howell:

“Moving all stadium fields to high quality natural grass surfaces is the easiest decision the NFL can make. The players overwhelmingly prefer it and the data is clear that grass is simply safer than artificial turf.”

Stay tuned on this one.

— Movie of the Day— Heartburn (1986)— A female writer from New York meets a famous columnist from Washington at a wedding; they up falling in love despite her reservations about getting married. They buy a house that needs a lot of renovations— the guy in charge of the renovations is played by Yakov Smirnov— he wasn’t good at his job. 

Great cast: Jack Nicholson/Meryl Streep are the writers. Their friends include Richard Masur, Jeff Daniels, Stockard Channing. Steven Hill (the original DA on Law and Order) is the bride’s father.

Good movie, a little dated now but Jack Nicholson is always good. Carly Simon did the music for this movie, which adds a lot.

— Word of the Day— Oxymoron— a combination of words that have opposite or very different meanings, like “cruel kindness”, “open secret” or “jumbo shrimp”

— NFL Trend of the Day— Under Dan Campbell, Lions are 24-10-1 ATS, 4-1 as a home favorite.

— Apparently, Bucs’ QB Baker Mayfield figured out Minnesota’s defensive signals in the first half of their game last week; he watched their signals and knew what defense they were going to begin. Is it possible that a teams’ signals are so simple that they can be stolen with the naked eye?

If I owned the Vikings, I’d be asking some freakin’ questions.

— This is from Bill Barnwell, of ESPN:

Five oldest teams in the NFL: Saints, Broncos, Eagles, 49ers, Bills

Five youngest teams in the NFL: Giants, Chiefs, Packers, Bears, Lions

— San Diego is the 8th-biggest city in America; was it a good move financially for the Chargers to bolt San Diego for SoFi Stadium in Los Angeles? I’m not saying yes or no, just wondering.

— A hacking group named Scattered Spider brought down the systems of the $14B gaming giant MGM Resorts International this week.

Several MGM systems remained paralyzed for a third straight day Wednesday after it said on Monday it had shut down some of them to contain a “cybersecurity issue.” The company, which operates over 30 hotel and gaming venues around the world including in Macau and Las Vegas, is investigating the hacking.

This isn’t good; I’ve stayed at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas several times, excellent place. Very good sports book, good pizzeria (Bonanno’s) around the corner from there.

— If the baseball playoffs started today (they don’t):
NL: Braves, Brewers, Dodgers. Wild Cards: Phillies, Cubs, Cin/Ariz
AL: Orioles, Twins, Astros. Wild Cards: Rays, Rangers, Mariners

Wednesday’s Den: Mid-week musings

— For the next two weeks, there will be two NFL games on Monday nights, starting an hour apart (7:15/8:15 ET).

— There is some good news for the Jets within the Aaron Rodgers fiasco; because Rodgers won’t play anymore this season, the 2024 draft pick the Jets are sending to Green Bay slips from a 1st-round pick to a 2nd-round pick. Small consolation, but it’ll help next spring.

— But where the Jets/Rodgers are concerned, there is way more bad news than good news; here are the cap charges for Rodgers: 

2023— $8.9M
2024— $17.1M
2025— $51.5M

Green Bay
2023— $40.3M

— When the Jets’ Xavier Gipson ran that punt back for a TD in overtime Monday night, it was just the third time there was a punt return TD in overtime:

2023— Xavier Gipson, NYJ
2011— Patrick Peterson, Ariz
1995— Tamarick Vanover, KC

— Field position is important in football; there were six NFL games over the weekend where one team won average starting field position by 10+ yards; all six of those teams won.

Avoiding 3/outs in important; you want the other team to have to drive as far as possible to score, so getting a first down or two, even if you don’t score, helps the squad out.

— In Week 1 of the NFL, there were exactly 100 plays of 20+ yards. Broken down by what down they happened on:

1st down: 43
2nd down: 29
3rd down: 26
4th down: 2

— Sunday in Cleveland, Cincinnati Bengals had the football seven times in the first half; they punted all seven times. They ran 26 plays in the first half for 83 yards, with only 3 first downs. 

Bengals had only one play longer than 12 yards the whole game; their game with the Ravens Sunday will be very interesting to watch.

— More and more NFL teams are going for it on 4th down in situations where it is debatable whether it is a smart thing to do. When asked why, they always reply “analytics” which is total BS. 

Colts were down 31-21 in the last 2:00 Sunday; QB Richardson got hurt, backup Gardner Minshew came in, but you need 10 points anyway, and time was a factor. Why not just kick the FG; either way, they needed to recover an onside kick to tie/win the game, but no, they went for it, failed, and the game quickly ended.

I’ll just say this; the old-school way isn’t always the wrong way. Understood that I went to a state college and barely graduated, so I’m basically a moron, but these Ivy League nitwits don’t have all the answers, either.

— Word of the Day: tenacious— unwilling to accept defeat or stop doing or having something. Persistent, stubborn, or obstinate.

— NFL Trend of the Day: Under Nick Sirianni, Eagles are 9-3 ATS as a home favorite, 4-7 as a road favorite.

— Mets are poaching Milwaukee Brewers’ president of baseball operations David Stearns; he will become the Mets’ new president of baseball ops. He grew up in New York City as a huge Mets’ fan; when the moronic Wilpon family owned the Mets, then-GM Omar Minaya wanted to hire Stearns to a permanent position (he was an intern) but the Wilpons said no.

Somehow, current GM Billy Eppler will stay with the Mets, despite this debacle of a season they’re having. He will be the #2 guy in the front office, serving under Stearns.

— Braves 7, Phillies 6 (10)
Eddie Rosario had the game-winning hit for Atlanta.
Matt Olson hit his 51st home run this year.

— Dodgers 11, Padres 2
Freddie Freeman went 4-5, with 4 runs scored, 2 RBI.
Will Smith scored three runs, knocked in three more.

— Cubs’ rookie OF Pete Crow-Armstrong appears to be a legitimately great defensive CF; he made two tremendous catches Tuesday night, robbing Nolan Jones of a pair of doubles, at least.

Crow-Armstrong is the son of actress Ashley Crow, who was the mom in Little Big League.

— Rangers 6, Blue Jays 3
Corey Seager got his 1,000th career hit; he also had hits #1,001 and #1,002.
Max Scherzer left after 5.1 scoreless IP with some kind of an injury. 

Tuesday’s Den: Nobody asked me, but…….

Jets 22, Bills 16
Aaron Rodgers tore his achilles on 4th play of game, is out for year.
Xavier Gipson returned a punt 65 yards for a TD in OT for walk-off win.
Jets ran ball for 172 yards, averaged only 4.7 yards/pass attempt.
Jets’ QBs now are Zach Wilson/former Packer Tim Boyle.

Buffalo led 13-3 at halftime.
Bills in 2nd half: 32 plays, 111 yards, 3 points, 3 turnovers
Diggs caught 10 passes for 102 yards and a TD.
Under is 6-2 in Buffalo’s last eight road openers.

— Since 2003, NFL QB’s taken first in the NFL Draft are 1-14 ATS in their first NFL start.

— Random fact: Philadelphia Eagles have 10 players who make more money than anyone on the New England Patriots.

— Tennessee Titans challenged a play 0:04 into their game in New Orleans Sunday, and they won the challenge; Saints’ kick returner was stripped of the ball near the sideline, but ref called the guy down. Tennessee challenged the call, and got the ball, wound up kicking a FG.

— NFC South has four new starting QB’s this season, first time in 21 years every team in an NFL division changed signal callers.

— 27.6% of the Detroit Lions’ roster is made up of undrafted free agents; only 17.2% of the Kansas Chiefs’ roster went undrafted.

— CBS halftime show Sunday had six guys on the panel; halftime is only 12-14 minutes long, you don’t really need six guys. Or five. Or four.

— Ravens beat Houston 25-9 Sunday, the first NFL game ever to end with a 25-9 score.

— Word of the Day: Debacle– a complete and total failure.

— NFL Trend of the Day: Last three years, Tennessee Titans were 2-6 ATS as road favorites.

— From 2018-22, college football teams who turned ball over 4+ times in a game, and got less than 15 first downs were 1-65 in those games.

Saturday night at Cal, Auburn had 12 first downs, four turnovers, but managed to win, 14-10.

— Michigan State football coach Mel Tucker has been suspended without pay, while the school investigates a claim that he sexually harassed a speaker who  was hired to address the Spartan team. 

Spartans brought back former MSU coach Mark Dantonio to help out in the interim; he’ll be wearing a headset and actively coaching from the sideline or the press box during Tucker’s absence.

Tucker signed a fully guaranteed 10-year, $95M contract extension in 2021 after Michigan State went 11-2, but in three years coaching the Spartans, Tucker is only 18-14.

Sounds like someone is trying to get out from under a very expensive contract.

— Michigan State played I-AA Richmond last week; the Spiders’ helmet logo is one of the best in college football, the Spider draped over the side of the helmet. They have white helmets now; I like the blue helmets they used to wear with that logo on it.

— Phillies’ SS Trea Turner has hit 10 home runs in his last 12 games.

— Braves’ 1B Matt Olson hit two homers Monday, now has 50 this season.

— Arizona 4, Mets 3
Tommy Pham tied game with an 8th-inning home run.
Ketel Marte drove in the winning run with a 9th-inning double.

— Padres 11, Dodgers 8
Juan Soto went 3-5 with 4 RBI, including a 9th-inning 3-run homer.

— A’s 4, Astros 0
Oakland is 11-9 in its last 20 games.
Astros are 4-9 in their last 13 home games.