In case you were busy faking injuries to run down the clock at your office, here’s what you missed in sports on Tuesday:
- The Boston Red Sox are in the ALCS after holding off the Tampa Bay Rays, who set a postseason record with nine pitchers in their 3-1 loss. Rays manager Joe Maddon was unable to hide his disappointment after the game, saying, “This one’s on me boys. The pitching was fine; I kept going out there meaning to bring in better hitters. But my timing was a mess.” Maddon then signaled to the press corps, replacing himself in the press conference with the team’s pitching coach Jim Hickey, who shook his head and said, “He meant to bring in [hitting coach] Derek Shelton. Joe’s going to be ruing this loss all offseason.”
- Nineteen-year-old San Jose rookie Tomas Hertl scored four goals, including a through-his-legs goal-of-the-year candidate, as his Sharks decimated the New York Rangers in a 9-2 win. Hertl, who pulled off the feat in his third NHL game, said afterward, “Well I hope this’ll show the San Jose organization that I’m ready for a call-up to the big show. No rush, but I think this proves I have the skills to make it at the top.” When told he was already at the top level of professional hockey, Hertl responded, “No. No. Please. Enough with the pranking of youngsters. There’s no way the team we were up against was a top-tier team tonight. You’re yanking me and it’s rude.”
- Max Scherzer made a rare relief appearance as his Detroit Tigers forced a deciding Game 5 with an 8-6 win over the Oakland A’s. Despite the win, Miguel Cabrera’s slump continued with the slugger going 1-for-4 with no extra-base hits. Meanwhile, on a cartoon spaceship, a human-size talking bunny rabbit with a wisecracking sensibility was convincing Mike Trout to join up with him to save planet Earth from evil aliens. He would join the bunny and some of his friends to play one baseball game deciding the fate of the planet. Interestingly, it was the presence of a talking duck with a penchant for buffoonery whom Trout called “the Vernon Wells of cartoon athletes” that sold Trout both on playing the game and raising the stakes: If the Toons and Trout won (perhaps with the help of Dan Aykroyd?), Cabrera would get his talent back, and the Tigers would defeat Trout’s biggest rivals, the Oakland A’s, in the ALDS. If the aliens won, Trout would be forced to play baseball with them for the rest of eternity, and would be doomed to never make a World Series. Trout closed the deal by saying, “Have you seen the Angels’ current contractual obligations? I have almost nothing to lose!”
- Despite still being on the Hurricanes’ payroll, Penguins forward Jussi Jokinen scored a hat trick against Carolina in Pittsburgh’s 5-2 win. However, more interesting than his on-ice accomplishment is this picture of Jokinen spying on a picnic held by his former teammates before the game. He could see them laughing, enjoying cheese and baguettes. Did they miss him? Did they care he was gone? If anything, they looked happier. “Why am I doing this to myself,” Jokinen said out loud before being spotted by Carolina captain Eric Staal and rolling down a hill to avoid an awkward confrontation.
- Falcons receiver Julio Jones is likely out for the season after suffering a foot injury in Atlanta’s 30-28 loss to the New York Jets on Monday. Upon hearing the news while leaving the custody of the Wilmington Police Department, world’s saddest man Gary Pittson yelled, “Julio, no!” having traded Adrian Peterson for the Falcons star in a desperate bye-week gambit on Saturday. After completing the trade, Pittson attempted to attend Improv Traffic School to mitigate the impact of his third “Click-it or Ticket” violation on his insurance. Unfortunately, he was pulled over on the way to his class by high school classmate Ched Gumbleton. “Hey, Gary the Fairy! I know you!” Gumbleton said as he wrote out Pittson’s fourth seat belt violation. Pittson tried to explain that the seat belt latch had been stolen from him by local toughs, but Gumbleton just laughed and said, “Nice try, Pit Stain. Don’t make me bring you downtown for lying to a cop. You wouldn’t lie to a cop, would you?” Pittson told Gumbleton he wouldn’t, but this only made the officer more suspicious. Pittson would wind up spending the entire weekend and the better part of Monday in jail, as his one phone call, which he made to his high school crush, Sandra Carmone-Jackson, the only person in his life whom he could remember smiling at him, was intercepted by her bass-playing husband Teddy. “You do the crime, you do the time. I’ll pick you up after I lay down some bass lines,” Teddy said, before hanging up the phone and forgetting all about Pittson’s predicament.
- Yankees owner Hal Steinbrenner has publicly said that while his team is willing to spend, he is not interested in signing star second baseman Robinson Cano to a 10-year contract. Steinbrenner went on to say, “Plus, Robbie’s not with Boras anymore. Jay Z? Not the same.” When asked if Boras was a tough negotiator, Steinbrenner said, “Oh, no, nothing like that. Scotty just has a certain je ne sais quoi about his aura. He says 10, I say OK. I just can’t say no to that sweet face!”
- Nike has given the NFL’s Pro Bowl uniforms an upgrade, using bright orange and Oregon’s volt yellow for the two teams. “Jesus H. Christ,” said NHL commissioner Gary Bettman upon hearing the news. “The NFL’s stupid All-Star Game jerseys are bigger news than our actual games? Seriously? Well, game over, better pack it in.” Bettman then folded the entire NHL, a move that Sharks rookie Tomas Hertl called “long overdue given the substandard level of play. Hopefully I can move on to something more befitting my prodigious talents soon.”