13) Pirates 1, Reds 0— Pittsburgh won the game, but didn’t get a hit; they’re 6th team since 1901 to win despite not getting any hits- it last happened in 2008, when Jered Weaver and Jose Arredondo of the Angels held the Dodgers hitless, but lost anyway.
Cincinnati is 9-26; things aren’t going well for them.
Hunter Greene threw 118 pitches Sunday, the most by any pitcher in a game this season. Coming into Sunday, Greene was 0-5, 8.57 in his previous five starts. He doesn’t give up a hit in 7.1 IP here, and they still lose.
12) Saturday/Sunday, there were seven Game 7’s, between NHL/NBA playoffs; I’m a believer that the NHL playoffs are better than the NBA version. Basketball doesn’t need seven games for each series— too many games. By the 7th game, everyone knows everyone’s plays and the games are uglier than normal games.
Playoff hockey is tremendous, where a hot goalie can keep an underdog in the hunt, and one odd bounce of the puck can send the favorite home unhappy.
11) Calgary 3, Dallas 2 OT— Flames outshot Dallas 67-28, but Stars’ goalie Jake Oettinger was just awesome in goal, keeping his team afloat until Calgary finally scored 15:09 into overtime.
Flames will now play their arch-rival Edmonton in playoffs for first time since 1991; this also guarantees a Canadian franchise will be in the NHL’s Final Four. Last time a Canadian team won the Stanley Cup was 1993, when Montreal won.
10) Rangers 4, Penguins 3 OT— New York rallies back from down three games to one, scoring at 4:46 of OT to advance to the next round of the playoffs.
For Pittsburgh, it is the fourth year in a row they lost in first round of playoffs. Penguins won the Stanley Cup in 2016, 2017, the 4th and 5th times they’ve won the title.
9) In this round of the NBA playoffs, only five of 26 games were decided by less than seven points; the series were mostly close, but the games weren’t much fun to watch- the Memphis-Golden State series was mostly an exception.
Suns were down 57-27 at HALFTIME Sunday night; at home!!! How does that happen?
On to Week 5 of the USFL:
8) Tampa Bay 27, Michigan 20:
— Michigan outgained Bandits 407-273, but were minus-2 in turnovers.
— Michigan QB Patterson threw for 304 yards.
— Jeff Fisher’s Panthers start the season 1-4.
7) New Jersey 27, New Orleans 17:
— Generals averaged 6.1 yards/play, outgained New Orleans 401-270.
— Breakers completed only 15-36 passes, threw two picks.
— 4-1 New Jersey leads the North Division.
6) Birmingham 30, Philadelphia 17:
— Hometown Stallions are 5-0; they trailed in 2nd half of every game.
— Switch to QB Smith provided spark for Stallions; he threw for 203 yards.
— Birmingham ran 75 plays, Stars ran only 49.
5) Pittsburgh 21, Houston 20:
— Maulers threw a 9-yard TD pass as time expired for the game-winning TD.
— QB Vad Lee came off bench to throw for 170 yards, two TD’s.
— Both teams are now 1-4.
4) Not many people had heard of Vad Lee before Sunday; his given name is Lavaedeay Monlique “Vad” Lee. He started at Georgia Tech in 2013, but transferred to I-AA James Madison after that season and played there for two years. He played three games for Saskatchewan in the CFL in 2016, and then his career pretty much came to a halt. He played in the Spring League for couple of years, but now, at age 29, he is kind of in the limelight for the first time.
3) Drew Brees is apparently out at NBC after one season as a studio analyst; now he is making noise about playing again. I’m sure Roger Goodell is thrilled that a guy who has been doing TV ads for a gambling app is talking about playing ball again.
Chances are probably better that Brees winds up doing TV on FOX.
2) Dodgers 5, Phillies 4— Gavin Lux walked it off with a 2-run double in ninth inning as LA avoided a 4-game sweep by the Phillies, who gave torrid slugger Bryce Harper the day off.
1) If the baseball playoffs started today (they don’t):
NL— Mets, Brewers, Dodgers. Wild Cards: Padres, Giants, Cardinals.
AL— New York, Twins, Astros. Wild Cards: Angels, Rays, Blue Jays