13a) Least shocking story of the month: After two seasons with Oklahoma State, assistant coach Cannen Cunningham and the program have mutually agreed to part ways.
Cannen Cunningham is Cade Cunningham’s brother; hiring Cannen and paying him a quarter million bucks is how Oklahoma State landed the best recruit in the country (Cade) last year. Now he is going to go help manage his younger brother’s career in the NBA. Go figure.
Where does the NCAA draw the line on stuff like this: can a recruit’s mother be hired as a secretary and be paid a six-figure salary? Could a sibling be hired as a personal trainer, at $125K a year? What is legal and what isn’t? Inquiring minds would like to know.
13) Early Thursday morning I’m sound asleep when I hear these very loud noises just outside my bedroom window. Some kind of machinery, lot of people talking. Awesome.
Turns out the nice lady across the street was getting her driveway resurfaced. At 8:06am.
Three trucks, some kind of a steamroller, and 4-5 guys chopping away at the old driveway, before the new surface could get put down. Lot of loud noises, not a lot of sleep.
They finished around 3:00 in the afternoon. Driveway looks nice; just wish they had done it later in the day.
12) Wednesday, Washington Nationals intentionally walked Freddie Freeman in both the first and second inning of their 7-6 loss to the Braves. I wondered how often that happens.
So I asked the great researcher Doug Kern on Twitter; turns out the last time that happened was in 2009, when Detroit walked Albert Pujols intentionally in both the 1st/2nd innings.
11) Hello friends, must be quite a week for Jim Nantz; college basketball national title game on Monday night, then off to Augusta for The Masters all weekend. Pretty good week.
I am told his backyard has a par-3 hole in it, but when is the guy ever home? He does NFL in the fall, golf in spring/summer, college basketball all winter. Its good to be him.
10) Mets 3, Marlins 2— Mets had bases loaded, two outs in 2-2 game, bottom of 9th, Miami pitcher throws a strike, Michael Conforto sticks his elbow out, lets the ball hit it and the Mets walk off with a controversial win.
None of the umpires had the onions to say Conforto let the ball hit him; Mets’ TV guys Keith Hernandez/Ron Darling even said he did. Play isn’t reviewable, which is embarrassing. Rule needs to be changed.
9) White Sox 6, Royals 0— Complete game for Lance Lynn, on 111 pitches. First CG of the young season; Chicago’s bullpen has been dismal so far- Tony LaRussa had to be glad to see this.
8) Shohei Ohtani won’t make his next start Sunday against Toronto; he has a blister on his pitching hand. Ohtani went 1-5 as the Angels’ DH Thursday night; he is hitting .280.
7) In 1969, when MLB first went to divisional play, they also added four expansion teams that year- Padres, Royals, Expos, Seattle Pilots. All four expansion teams won their first game that season. Expos are the Washington Nationals now; Pilots are the Milwaukee Brewers.
6) Rory Mcilroy shot +4 (76) in the first round of The Masters Thursday; not only that, on the 7th hole, he hit a shot that struck his dad on the leg. Not good.
5) Read Thursday that actor Don Johnson is re-booting his old TV show Nash Bridges for a run on USA Network, not sure if it is one movie or if it’ll be a series again. Nash Bridges ran on CBS from 1996-2001; Johnson played a San Francisco cop whose partner was played by Cheech Marin, who is also returning for the re-boot.
4) G-League’s Erie BayHawks are moving to Birmingham, AL next season.
3) Arizona State has already poached transfers this spring from Toledo, Boston College, Robert Morris; the kid from Toledo is Marreon Jackson- he scored 18.1 ppg, grabbed 6.1 rpg and dished out 5.9 assists/game. He is expected to be a big help for the Sun Devils, who had four players transfer out of Tempe after the season.
2) UCLA basketball coach Mick Cronin parlayed his Bruins’ run to the Final Four into a two-year contract extension.
1) Thursday would’ve been Catfish Hunter’s 75th birthday; he passed away in 1999, at age 53.
James Augustus Hunter was my boyhood hero; on his rookie baseball card, in 1965, they spelled his name wrong on the back (Tim, not Jim) and when 5-year old me saw that, I adopted him as my favorite player, prompting strange looks from my dad. In 1965, not many kids in upstate New York rooted for the Kansas City A’s.
Catfish Hunter won 233 career games, nine of them in the postseason; he threw a perfect game in 1968, and knocked in three of the four runs the A’s scored that game. He won five World Series rings and won inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1987.