A GRIP ON SPORTS
The telly is on, as I watch the most important English sporting event since, well, since the last soccer match. Andy Murray is carrying 77 years of history on his back, trying to become the first British man since Fred Perry to win England's tennis championship, Wimbledon. Those are tough shoes to fill. Read on.
• What's funny is Murray, the best player in British history since Perry, wears Adidas shoes (a German company), not those made in England with Perry's name on them. But as he slogs through the early stages of a tough match with Novak Djokovic, Murray looks as if he could be the guy to break England's drought. If Murray does win, coming on the heels of Justin Rose's U.S. Open golf win, will 2013 already be considered England's best sporting year since 1966, when the country last won the World Cup? Heck, if Murray wins, maybe that portends some other huge upset in the world of sports, like the Cubs winning a World Series or (now this is out there) the Cougars winning the Rose Bowl. Could be. So if you are a Washington State fan, you should be glued to your television set (as we call it on this side of the pond), your little WSU flag in one hand, the British flag in the other, and root for Murray. If he wins, it means anything can happen. History is not relevant. All that matters is today. Of course, Djokovic could rally and uphold his lofty world ranking, crushing England's dreams once again. And Oregon could win another Rose Bowl. Both would restore some order in the sporting world. And make life a bit less interesting.
• Shock: For a half last night, the Spokane defense seemed a bit discombobulated. Tampa Bay was moving the ball with ease and scoring, seemingly, at will. But that all changed at halftime. The Shock defense asserted itself in the final two quarters and Spokane pulled away from the Storm for a 63-49 victory.
• Indians: Spokane kept shooting itself in the foot early on last night, with the Indians making enough mistakes to lose a couple games, but in the end all it cost the Indians was one, 9-8, to Eugene. Oh, it also cost the Indians a winning streak that had stretched to six games. Chris Derrick has the story and more in this blog post.
• Mariners: There was no rally for the M's yesterday, as the Reds scored about 300 two-out runs in a 13-4 Cincinnati victory. The Mariners were right in the game until Mat Latos, the Reds' pitcher, belted a two-out, two-run double off Jeremy Bonderman. It went downhill from there. … The M's pair of aces may be dealing in next week's All-Star Game in New York. … Nick Franklin wasn't in Saturday's lineup but he earned some points for playing though pain. … Alex Liddi has been traded to Baltimore. … Larry Stone's Sunday column looks at the most important question of the month. When will the M's begin to trade parts to contenders and build for the future? Stone also has his rankings and awards. … Jerry Brewer opines on a former Mariner who is headed to prison.
• Sounders: The Sounders had multiple chances to score early on in their 2-0 loss to Vancouver last night, their first loss to the Whitecaps. But when you can't put the biscuit in the basket, to borrow a hockey term, it's impossible to win. And the Sounders lamented their missed chances. … With the win, Vancouver pulled into the Cascadia Cup lead, albeit through the tiebreaker.
• A couple things. Our elliptical is all put together and hovering over my right shoulder like the creature in Alien. It might just take as big a bite out of me. And I have to apologize for a factual error yesterday, one pointed out by a nice email from Howie Stalwick. I fixed the WSU section from yesterday. Until later …