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Monday, May 31, 2021
An epic weekend of sports commenced on Memorial Day weekend, unlike 2020 in which the country was imperiled with COVID shutdowns. Memorial Day always anchors the Indianapolis 500 and this year's race more than lived up to the billing. Historic even. As Brazilian Helio Castroneves won his career record tying fourth Indy and the first in 12 years. And he did it with style. In what many described as the most entertaining (and statistically fast) race in recent memory as there was lots of action and passing rewarding 135K (partial attendance) fans who waited after missing last year. The 46 year-old Castroneves beat out young stars like Alex Palou and Pato O'Ward to show experience over youth. The race featured intriguing pit strategies but at the end, it was tactics and timing and the veteran shined. Helio Castroneves is the Longhorndave Sportsman of the Week!
Monday, May 24, 2021
What a week in sports. But rarely is there a story of a legend of the sport doing things well beyond one would think his age would allow. Phil Mickelson. Fifty. Never a Sportsman of the Week winner until now. His last major was the 2013 Open Championship (commonly called the British Open) in July 2013 but he was edged out by first time Tour de France winner Chris Froome. Taking the back seat no more. At age 50, Phil Mickelson won the Professional Golf Association (PGA) Championship for his sixth major. His first was 17 years ago (when literally at 33 some thought he may never win one). He's won all four majors, this was his second PGA to go with two green jackets. Mickelson was the only golfer with three rounds at 70 or better the first three days (runner up Brooks Koepka was the only with 3 at 71 or better). Sunday of the PGA Championship weekend seemed more like match plays as lower placed golfers surged but Mickelson and Koepka battled down the stretch with Mickelson holding on for the win. What a weekend and what a golfing legend, and a first time Longhorndave Sportsman of the Week!
Thursday, May 20, 2021
As a period of transition engulfs the Colorado Rockies franchise with the loss of key players, corner infielder Josh Fuentes stepped up to deliver a decent week for the struggling ball club. With the Rockies floundering with the worst record in Major League Baseball, Fuentes put his team on his back for the week and led them to a 3-2 record by going 11-22, 2 HR, and tallying two or RBI in each game he played (13 total in five games). His May batting average is warming up with the weather now at .347 to offset a struggling May. The Rockies aren't going anywhere this year, but Fuentes is a player to watch, and the Longhorndave Sportsman of the Week!
Monday, May 10, 2021
Two for one sale, No Hitters are cheap! I promise, my Blog isn't all about No Hitters but wow, we can't go a week without one happening. This week two, but we give the nod to the pitcher on the team who hasn't pitched one since 1969. Baltimore Orioles left handed pitcher John Means flummoxed the Seattle Mariners for no hits, no walks, and no errors over 9 innings. The sole base runner? Reached on a strikeout wild pitch. That's how close to a perfect game. The 28-year old Means is in his third year of being a workhorse starter but this was his first complete game or shutout. The Orioles have been punching bag in the rough and tough AL East but this could be a turning point for the proud franchise. John Means earns the Longhorndave Sportsman of the Week!
Tuesday, May 4, 2021
No Kentucky Derby jockey has ever won two Derbies in an eight month span. Leave it to COVID to change that. John Velazquez was brilliant on a second tier horse to win the 2021 Kentucky Derby for Medina Spirit. What's amazing is the similarities to the 2020 Derby ran on Labor Day Weekend. Both times it was legendary Bob Baffert's only entry. Both times the horse wasn't the favorite. Both times, Velazquez led him to victory. Pretty much wire to wire from the Clubhouse turn on. The stretch was harrowing four wide as horses had a clean run, but Velazquez and Medina Spirit would not be denied It was great that fans could see, and Medina Spirit jockey John Velazquez is the Longhorndave Sportsman of the Week!