The GIST's Quick Hits - US (May 6, 2021)
⚾️Baseball: The hurlers are proving the haters wrong. Following up LA Angels pitcher Shohei Ohtani’s incredible , Tuesday saw Atlanta pitcher Huascar Ynoa become the first pitcher to since 2018. Go off.
- And while some pitchers are getting hits, others aren’t allowing any. Baltimore Oriole John Means no hit the Seattle Mariners yesterday, marking this season’s third no-hitter that also being a . Close, but no cigar.
🏒Hockey: Here’s a doozy: On Monday, Washington Capitals right winger Tom Wilson who has a and subsequent disciplinary action — acted severely outside traditional hockey violence boundaries and , injuring him. Wilson was only issued a
slap on the wrist $5,000 fine. Um, WTF?
- In response, the Rangers put out calling for the firing of the NHL’s head of player safety on Tuesday. But on Wednesday, the Rangers made their own firing, with their president and general manager. Didn’t see that coming.
- The teams faced off again in their final meeting of the season last night, and unsurprisingly, things started with . The first period alone and Wilson leaving with an upper body injury. Saw that one coming.
⚾️(Minor League) Baseball: Following last year’s COVID-19 cancellation, Minor League Baseball (MiLB) returned on Tuesday, 595 days after the last season ended. Highlights from Opening Day include Tampa Bay Rays prospect (and the ) Wander Franco going 3-for-5 in his Triple-A debut, including . What a welcome.
Soccer Football: USMNT forward Christian Pulisic continues to shine across the pond. His in yesterday’s Champions League semifinal helped lift Chelsea to a 2–0 win (3–2 ) over Real (pronounced REY-al) Madrid. Chelsea is the to send their women’s and men’s teams to a Champs League final in the same season. Bloody cool.
⚽Thorns Host Gotham FC in NWSL Challenge Cup Final
The game: It all comes down to this. After four weeks of play, the Portland Thorns will host NJ/NY Gotham FC on Saturday at 1 p.m. ET in the second iteration of the Cup. And thanks to loosening COVID-19 restrictions in Oregon, the stadium will host around 3,800 fans, giving the Thorns an extra home-field advantage boost.
- And for the non-live fans (present!), CBS will air the match in the U.S. and Twitch will internationally.
The teams: Both enter the Cup final undefeated, but the Thorns are the stronger squad. In the , they notched three wins and a draw (aka tie) to win the West division. On the other hand, Gotham FC won two and drew two on their way to the top of the East and haven’t scored since their second match.
- Portland has the upper hand, especially with legendary players like Lindsey Horan and Christine Sinclair on the roster. But if Gotham striker Midge Purce, who’s already scored twice, can find the net again, they’ll have a good chance to stun the favorites.
The off-field dynamics: In other NWSL news, 15-year-old Olivia Moultrie against the league to let her sign a contract. Moultrie, , trains with the Thorns, but NWSL rules state players cannot sign contracts until they’re 18 (a rule that in MLS, BTW). Any chance they can get this sorted by game time Saturday?
New York: If it weren’t messy, it wouldn’t be fun
🏀NBA:Despite the Knicks’ 97–113 loss to the Denver Nuggets last night, they’ve still won 12 of their last 14 games and have at least a spot in the play-in tournament. And while that’s already huge, if the Knicks can stay within the top six, they’ll avoid the play-ins altogether.
- Over in Brooklyn, the Nets are headed in the opposite direction after three straight losses, including a pair to the Milwaukee Bucks — who are for the East’s second seed. Spare us , and secure that second seed.
⚾️MLB: After losing 4–1 to the St. Louis Cardinals, the Mets starting shortstop Franciso Lindor for their next game, which the Mets won 7–2. The Lindor hasn’t earned a hit in his last 24 at-bats (the fourth longest of any Met in a decade), which might be part of the reason why the Mets Chili Davis and Tom Slater on Monday. Interesting.
Philadelphia: They don’t like us, we don’t care
⚽️Union: The Union and Atlanta United drew in the second leg of the CONCACAF Champions League quarterfinals on Tuesday. Thankfully, the Union’s 3–0 victory in the first leg secured their semifinals spot. But Tuesday’s match didn’t come without (this time, between coaches). .
- The semifinals won’t take place until mid-August at the earliest, so for now, we’re just going to keep gloating, er, celebrating.
🎓⚽️🏐Nittany Lions: In yesterday’s Round of Sixteen, the Penn State women’s soccer team took an early lead over the top-ranked Florida State Seminoles when Lions midfielder Frankie Tagliaferri scored off Sam Coffey’s . Unfortunately, the lead didn’t last long, and the Seminoles powered back to win 3–1. So much heart from these Lions.
- In usual dominant fashion, PSU is one of only five schools to have both women’s and men’s teams in soccer’s Sweet 16 this year. The men’s team takes the pitch against the Georgetown Hoyas today at noon ET. We Are!
- On the court, the blue and white men’s volleyball team fell 3–0 to the Lewis Flyers in the Elite 8 on Tuesday; the Lions’ struggling offense couldn’t keep up with the Flyers’ attacks. Sigh.
⛳A golf super league has been proposed
The idea: A golf super league to rival the PGA TOUR, initially called the Premier Golf League and now the Super Golf League (SGL), has been proposed. We know what you’re thinking: “Not this again?!” But, despite its poor timing just two weeks after soccer’s , the SGL has been .
- Word of the SGL has been floating around for at least a year, but with some solid financial backing from Saudi oil magnates, organizers are now ready to get it off the ground.
The set-up: The league has started reaching out to players to join, and only the best of the best are receiving invitations. Golfers like world No. 1 Dustin Johnson and No. 10 Brooks Koepka (pronounced KEP-ka) are being asked to play in the 18-event season starting September 2022 that would have them compete both as .
And even though the PGA TOUR recently announced a $40-million for the game’s 10 biggest social media stars to split, the SGL could see each participant earn at least $30 million a year. Uh, where’s our invite?