(Neil Miller/Sportsday Wire)
Just came across some pictures (ummmm–shall we just say “provocative” ones?) of lovely, 57-year-old actress Sharon Stone (yes, you read that correctly– she’s 57, folks) in the latest issue of Harper’s Bazaar. Sheesh–and I used to think that Rod Carew’s swing was the ultimate thing of beauty; goodness gracious (of course–this is putting aside air-brushing, lighting, photographer’s talent, etc.)……….TRIVIA QUESTION: The 2001 Cleveland Indians–who finished 91-71 under manager Charlie Manuel–had three players on the squad who drove in 100 or more runs apiece. Can you name this talented trio of hitters? Answer to follow……….I had the privilege of interviewing former L.A. Dodgers first baseman Wes Parker on “Monday Night Sports Talk” last week–a man who won SIX Gold Gloves in a row between 1967 and 1972. My co-host Tony DeAngelo on Parker’s excellence in the field: “I’ve seen guys like George Scott, Keith Hernandez, Don Mattingly, and many others play the position over the years. Not ONE of them was a better-fielding first baseman than Wes Parker; he was the best I’ve ever seen.”……….Here in New England, it’s NEVER too early to think about winter clothing, right? The Connecticut Tigers (Class A-Detroit Tigers) will be having a “Winter Hat Giveaway Night”–next Saturday (8/22) as the team takes on the Vermont Lake Monsters. Game time is 7:05 PM (gates open at 6) and the first 1,000 fans will receive a hat–courtesy of Backus and Windham Hospitals. Ticket info, directions to Dodd Stadium, etc. can be obtained by visiting the team’s website: www.cttigers.com ……….Congrats to my good friend–former Cubs infielder Carmen Fanzone–for recently having a “Hot Doug” sausage named after him at the Wrigley Field concession area. Doug Sohn, who formerly ran a hot dog stand on N. California Ave. in Chicago, recently started offering his famous sausages at Wrigley and named them after three of his favorite players he followed as a youth: Dave Kingman, Rick Reuschel, and Fanzone. Anyone out there feeling HUNGRY? The ‘Kingman’ is a bacon cheeseburger sausage with cola BBQ sauce and sharp cheddar cheese. The ‘Reuschel’ choice features an atomic sausage with chipotle mustard and pepper jack cheese. And the ‘Fanzone’ variety is a Vienna Polish sausage with spicy brown mustard and carmelized onions. My only question is THIS: With a last name like “Fanzone”, how could that choice be prepared with Polish sausage instead of ITALIAN? Regardless, my stomach is growling as I write this; congrats again, Mr. Fanzone!……….ITEM: S.D. Chargers QB Philip Rivers signs a 4-year contract extension worth approximately $85 million (about $21 million per season). If my math is correct–and figuring Rivers connects with receivers perhaps 350 times per season–he will earn approximately $60,000 PER COMPLETION. Nice work if you can get it, huh?……….*Here goes: Just imagine if former LPGA Tour winner Tammie Green married current PGA golfer/recent PGA Championship winner Jason Day. Fans of a certain punk/pop band would surely be delighted as she’d be navigating golf courses with the full married name of Tammie Green Day……….If anyone out there DIDN’T get choked up when K.C. Chiefs safety Eric Berry (who was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s lymphoma last December) took the field vs. the Cardinals this past weekend, check your pulse and see your OWN doctor IMMEDIATELY……….ITEM: N.Y. Jets QB Geno Smith gets punched in the face, breaks his jaw, and then is spotted winging the football around with friends two days after surgery–AGAINST doctor’s orders. Now I know Smith was an English major at WVU and is a pretty bright guy. But I’m TOTALLY convinced that he has NEVER heard of a very popular term that is extremely familiar to most of us: “COMMON SENSE”. Sheesh, Geno–c’mon……..Speaking of Smith (and NOT to make light of ANY type of injury): If the “powers that be” of the N.Y. Jets have ANY type of sense of humor, the theme from “Jaws” will be played over the PA system every time Smith takes the field (that’s IF he takes the field) during the upcoming 2015 season……….Answer to trivia question: JUAN GONZALEZ (140), JIM THOME (124), and ROBERTO ALOMAR (100)……….Finally, condolences go out to the family of former University of Kentucky offensive line coach John Jacob Hallum (“Jake”)–who passed away recently at the age of 76. “Jake” was the OL coach under Jerry Claiborne at Kentucky for eight years; he previously held the same position under Claiborne at Maryland for ten years. Hallum went on to do some NFL scouting work for the Eagles, Patriots, and Browns and was universally known for his intense attention to detail/highly-respected work ethic. Perhaps “Jake’s” greatest football accomplishment was the development of former Kentucky lineman Dermontti Dawson–who would play 13 seasons with the Pittsburgh Steelers and be inducted into the NFL Hall of Fame in 2012. Hallum is survived by his wife, Mable, and two sons–Todd and Bart. May Coach Hallum rest in peace.