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About Last Night: Verlander’s 19th Opus

Justin Verlander

In case you were out living a life of leisure, here’s what you missed in sports on Monday.

  • The New York Giants routed the Chicago Bears 41-13 in preseason football, but the win was marred by a season-ending knee injury to cornerback Terrell Thomas. Head coach Tom Coughlin told confused reporters that it would now be more important than ever for Eli Manning to throw 4-yard passes on 3rd-and-long.
  • Justin Verlander became baseball’s first 19-game winner as Detroit topped Tampa Bay 5-2. Hardcore Verlander fans were hoping his latest start would mark some kind of stylistic evolution, but instead they got the same mix of fastballs, sliders, curves, and change-ups he’s used ever since he went mainstream with the Tigers. The scene was lame, too; the only people who go to his starts anymore are frat boys and teeny-boppers. From now on they’re just going to stick to the minor leagues, where players still care about the art.
  • Cubs shortstop Starlin Castro was benched by manager Mike Quade for an incident Sunday when turned his back to the batter while a pitch was being thrown. Castro accepted the punishment, and was too embarrassed to admit that he’d installed tiny rearview mirrors on the brim of his hat and was seeing if they worked.
  • At the Little League World Series, the local kids from Keystone, Pennsylvania avoided elimination with a combined no-hitter against Louisiana. “They’re a good team and all,” said a Keystone youngster, “but our fathers were just more overbearing today.”
  • In the eighth inning of St. Louis’ 2-1 loss to the Dodgers, Cardinal outfielder Matt Holliday had to leave the game when a moth lodged itself in his ear. Trainers were forced to remove it with a pair of tweezers, at which point the insect, Edward “Ned” Carlisle, lost its life. Carlisle had lived most of his life in the St. Louis area, and was a veteran of the Great Moth-Bee War of 1979. He served on his local board of education in the mid-90s, and was honored with a lifetime achievement plaque last year for leading his community in a migration to the stadium lights. He’s survived by his wife Clara and more than 300 children.
  • Cliff LeeĀ gave up just three hits over seven scoreless innings, and the Phillies routed the MetsĀ 10-0. In a new PR tactic designed to explain their recent lack of success, every Mets player in the locker room suddenly grabbed their left ear and began shouting “moth! moth!”
  • Former Ohio State quarterback Terrelle Pryor was picked by the Oakland Raiders in yesterday’s supplemental draft. Together, maybe they’ll finally clean up that crazy city.
  • In a clash of English Premier League powers, Manchester United throttled Tottenham 3-0. United are now tied at the top of the table with Manchester City and Wolverhampton, and it’s being reported that Wolverhampton plan to pit the two Manchester sides against one another in a complex Shakespearean plot involving courtyard insinuations, tantalizing riddles, and planted notes.

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