The Week That Was: Boonedoggle

     The Yankees won 100 games under first-year manager Aaron Boone and ordinarily that would make Bronx Bombers fans giddy. Of course in the Yankees culture anything less than winning a World Series is considered a disappointing season.

     Most mature Yankees fans could accept the fact that their team was beaten by a better one even if it was the arch-rival Boston Red Sox. What bothered them, and apparently Yankees CEO Hank Steinbrenner as well, was that Boone kept his starting pitchers in Games 3 and 4, Luis Severino and CC Sabathia respectively, in too long when it was clear that they did not have anything close to resembling their best stuff.

     Adding salt to the wound was the fact that Red Sox manager Alex Cora, a former Mets infielder, was also a rookie manager who came out ahead in their first ever playoff series.

     Yankees outfielder Aaron Judge was criticized by former team first baseman and current ESPN personality Mark Teixeira on that network’s morning show, “Get Up,” for playing Frank Sinatra’s “New York, New York” loudly while walking past the Red Sox clubhouse in Fenway Park after Game 2. Even though the Red Sox won the next two games I didn’t have a problem with Judge having a little fun after a win. You have to be highly superstitious to think that he angered the baseball gods and created needless bad karma.

     As if an earlier end to the baseball season then they’d have liked was bad enough for Yankees fans, things went from bad to worse on Friday when it was announced that Yankee shortstop Didi Gregorius would miss at least two months of the 2019 season recovering from Tommy John shoulder surgery.

     Didi was the guy who replaced Derek Jeter at shortstop after “The Captain” retired in 2015. In spite of what had to have been incredible pressure he has played extremely well both in the field and at the plate.

     He has also quickly integrated into the social fabric of New York City. For example,  dapper Didi has become one of the faces of Bloomingdale’s men’s fashion lines.

      You don’t see a lot of alums from my alma mater, Columbia University, on pro sports teams so I took notice when the Knicks signed forward Jeff Coby to a contract to play for their Westchester Knicks G-League team. Coby, an art history major from the Class of 2017 played last year in Spain and admitted that he was surprised to hear from the Knicks.

     In a nice move, the Knicks let him suit up and sit on the bench for their last preseason game against the Nets last Friday. Jeff admitted that it bothered him that Columbia never got to play at Madison Square Garden when he was on the varsity squad.                

     A win is a win but even Jets head coach Todd Bowles called his team’s 42-34 win over the Indianapolis Colts on Sunday “ugly.”

     Gang Green’s defense was nonexistent most of the day as evidenced by the way Colts running back Marlon Mack ran like a Mack truck in the second half. The Jets couldn’t tackle him as he picked up one first down after another..Todd Bowles admitted that his defense was guilty of countless blown plays on him.

     Place kicker Jason Myers set a Jets record by kicking seven field goals in a game. O f course it could be argued that reflected poorly on Jets quarterback Sam Darnold because he had to settle for them instead of touchdowns.

     Jets defensive end Leonard Williams admired Colts QB Andrew Luck’s passing skill and affability. Williams was unable to sack Luck during the game but he did make him rush a few throws. “Whenever I was able to hit him he repeatedly told me ‘Nice play!’” an impressed Williams told me in the Jets’ locker room following the game.

     The Jets’ Super Bowl III victory over the then Baltimore Colts on January 12, 1969 remains one of the greatest upsets in sports history and 50 years later that remains the high water mark in the team’s history. The Jets honored the surviving members of that squad at halftime on Sunday. Legendary QB Joe Namath told today’s Jets fans that the current team can beat any other NFL squad.

    The Arthur Ashe Institute for Urban Health, whose dual missions are (1) to help young people from impoverished backgrounds have careers in health-related fields, and (2) educate people about ways of improving their health and longevity by sending health professionals to community gathering places such as barber shops and salons, held their 24th annual Sports Ball last Thursday evening. NBC news anchor Craig Melvin and his wife, former ESPN air personality, Lindsay Czarniak emceed the event.

    Former New York City mayor David Dinkins attends the Ashe Dinner every year. At age 91 he does need help with mobility but he still looks very much the same as he did when he was running City Hall in the early 1990s and he is as sharp as a tack.

     When I asked the former mayor about former US Attorney General and onetime East Elmhurst resident Eric Holder’s comments about Democrats needing to kick back when Republicans go low, Dinkins showed that he has not lost one ounce of his political deftness. “I heard about that!” he said with a laugh and refused to offer his opinion on Holder’s statement.

     Every homeowner and apartment dweller has had to deal with some unwanted insect house guests from time to time. The problem is that the chemicals from insecticides are frequently harmful to humans. A company called EcoRaider ( has created a line of bio-insecticides that are free of chemicals and instead use the natural insect-fighting properties of flowers and other plants. EcoRaider makes sprays that kill bedbugs, ants, roaches and mosquitos.  

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