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Saturday, October 19, 2019  Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
Rain 43° Rain


A winning swing - and smile


Late Saturday afternoon, I received a text from an old friend. My first golfing friend. It was about the Masters. Read on.


• In the text, Kent asked, "So, who you do have tomorrow? Phil?" My answer: "Phil or Bubba. If one doesn't win, I want the other." Kent's response: "I like that, too." We got our wish Sunday, though Phil's Mickelson's meltdown on the fourth hole was so typical it was sad. (By the way, did anyone else catch Phil telling the CBS interviewer after the round he basically hit the ball where he wanted it, it just was unlucky to hit the railing? Really, he wanted to hit it into the stands and he was unlucky it didn't bounce off someone's noggin and back on the green?) But his bad decision opened the door for everyone, and it was appropriate Bubba Watson walked through. After all, he's made enough bone-headed decisions over the years to throw away tournaments, it was fitting another one – the decision to hook a short iron off a patch of concrete-like dirt – paid off with a major title. (By the way, I'm about done with Comcast. When I went to replay Louis Oosthuizen's double eagle, my DVR wouldn’t work. I had to turn it off and on to get it back into the record mode and lost the double-eagle video. Luckily, CBS only replayed it 39 more times before the broadcast went off the air.) All in all, it was a great Sunday of watching golf before Easter dinner.

• Other than that, did anyone else find it odd there was no Mariners game to watch? It was Sunday, it was the first week of the season, and there was no M's game on television. Yes, I know it had to do with the trip to Japan – it just keeps on giving, doesn't it? – but it still seemed odd to me not to be able to switch over to a baseball game on a Sunday afternoon. Well, there is one tonight and we have more on that below.


• Washington State: News on the Cougars is about the only item locally we can pass along and even Christian Caple had to search long and hard to find any today. He actually decided to make his own, posting this interview video yesterday and finding a handful of Pac-12-related links this morning. WSU isn't back on the practice field again until Tuesday. ... summarizes the weekend scrimmages around the conference, including Washington State's. ... The "wave-the-flag" movement found it's way to Augusta.

• Chiefs: Nothing on Spokane's series with Tri-City, but we did find this Portland Winterhawk feature to feed your WHL appetite.

• Mariners: I thought I might get an argument yesterday when I called Vin Scully baseball's all-time best radio guy, but no one called me on it so I'll just assume you all agree with me. Smart readers. I also think Safeco is one of the best of the "new" ballparks. ... Tonight's the night we all – and by we, I mean American baseball fans – get our first view of Yu Darvish, the 6-foot-5 power pitcher the Rangers imported from Japan. We traveled down to the Texas to come up with a couple stories concerning Darvish's debut against the M's. ... The Darvish debut is also the kickoff point for M's stories in the Seattle media, focusing on Seattle's young pitchers. ... The Mariners are 3-1 and sit atop the AL West standings. Will they stay there?

• Sounders: Seattle's women's team will play tonight and will feature a handful of players from the U.S. national team.

• Golf: The thrust of the stories from Augusta seem to be on three things: The winner being the people's champion, the double eagle and Phil's inability to grab his fourth green jacket. We have them all covered in links, and include a bonus one to Todd Milles' blog post in the News Tribune. Todd's a WSU alum who I've covered preps and Cougars with over the years.


• Yep, a really slow day, which may just be a tone setter for the rest of the spring and summer. We'll always find some way to liven it up, though. Until later ... 

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Vince Grippi
Vince Grippi is a freelance local sports blogger for He also contributes to the SportsLink Blog.

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