Originally not scheduled to pitch, Monica Abbott was more than willing Saturday. And the Chicago Bandits left-hander was more than happy with the results: a no-hitter and a 1-0 victory against the USSSA Pride in a National Pro Fastpitch contest.
Meagan Denny-White was listed as the Bandits start in Game 3 of their series against the Pride at the Ballpark in Rosemont. With an evening filled with festivities — retiring softball great Jennie Finch’s No. 27 and handing out the 2011 NPF championship rings before the game and the first fireworks display at the stadium after the game — someone suggested Abbott might be the perfect person to pitch.
“I said, ‘Sure. Whatever Bill [team president and CEO Bill Sokolis] wants,” said Abbott, who won the season opener on Thursday.
Abbott was close to being the perfect person to pitch. She struck out 14, and the only batter to reach base against her was Charlotte Morgan on a second-inning error by shortstop Tammy Williams.
“I told her [Abbott], ‘If I had known you were going to pitch a no-hitter, I wouldn’t have made the error,’” Williams said with a smile after signing autographs with her teammates for fans who lined up for the players’ signatures.
The Bandits’ run off star left-hander Cat Osterman came in the third inning when Amanda Williams tripled and Vicky Galindo followed with a grounder back to Osterman that deflected off her glove and allowed Williams to score.
All of which made for a perfect — or reasonable facsimile thereof — night for the Bandits and their band of faithful followers.
For those folks upset about the split decision awarded to challenger Timothy Bradley in his bout with welterweight champion Manny Pacquiao, remember this: It’s boxing.
And so ends the Filipino fighter’s seven-year unbeaten run that encompassed 15 fights.
Promoter Bob Arum was of a similar mindset to those fans at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas who booed the decision.
“I’ve never been as ashamed of the sport of boxing as I am tonight,” he said.
The consolation prize for Arum, who handles both boxers, is there will be a rematch in November.
Yes, this is boxing. While some may call the bouts decision an outrage and the like, others can call it simply as they see it: marketing.
For all those folks upset about the Miami Heat defeating the Boston Celtics in Game 7 to capture the Eastern Conference title and advance to the NBA Finals vs. the Oklahoma City Thunder, remember this: It’s the NBA.
There’s nothing the league would like better than to have a rivalry that could rival the Celtics-Los Angeles Lakers of the 1980s that featured Larry Bird vs. Magic Johnson. LeBron James of the Heat vs. Kevin Durant of the Thunder figures to make for fairly compelling viewing. Meaning fairly impressive television numbers. All of which translates into money.
Yes, this is the NBA.
For all those folks upset about I’ll Have Another not running in the Belmont Stakes and thereby depriving the world of a potential Triple Crown champion for the first time since 1978 with Affirmed, remember this: It’s horse racing.
Union Rags won the race that saw interest in it greatly diminished by Friday’s annnouncement that a stretched tendon would keep I’ll Have Another from running.
While injury is the reason given for I’ll Have Another retiring and skipping the shot at racing immortality, there are whispers about drugs. Whether credible or not, such rumors exist.
Yes, this is horse racing.
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