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"Tomorrow Is Your Best Friend": The Prince of Paranoia Tries To Remind Himself After Orioles Hit Bump in Road & Columbia Season Ends Abruptly

"Tomorrow Is Your Best Friend" is a line I heard first from Bobby Valentine when he was managing the Mets.  "The sun don't shine every day on the same dog's head" is another comforting adage I have heard from players after a tough loss. 


You can go crazy playing every game over and over in your head, micromanaging every pitch selection.  Especially nowadays since MLB has expanded to 12 teams eligible for post-season.  The basic truth remains.  It is better to be comfortably over .500 by Memorial Day than under it. 


I started drafting this edition of my blog when the Orioles lost three in a row in St Louis a week ago. The Orioles' regular season streak of not being swept in a series for two years ended with a thud. But the Cardinals are an improving team after their horrible start.  Before games on Memorial Day May 27 they were only one under .500. 


First baseman-outfielder Alec Burleson looks like the real deal and so does shortstop Masyn Winn. Another youngster Mike Siani is looking good in center field. They still have a ways to catch front-running Milwaukee and I'm rooting for former Oriole infielder Joey Ortiz who was packaged with lefthander DL Hall, now on the IL, for Corbin Burnes in the off-sseason. 


That sweepless Oriole streak was always a bogus kind of streak anyway - you could keep it going by winning only one out of three. And every Oriole player and fan knew that they were swept in the biggest series that mattered last year, the divisional series against the the eventual World Series-winning Texas Rangers.  


Happily, the Orioles have rebounded in the next series to sweep the woeful White Sox in almost equally rainy Chicago.  Unfortunately, the Birds do keep losing starting pitchers to injury, southpaw John Means most seriously.  Yet there is a chance than a Big Three of starters can be counted on as Birds try to catch the Yankees - Corbin Burnes (free agent after this season), Kyle Bradish, and Grayson Rodriguez. 


Bradish is a particular favorite of mine, coming from New Mexico State, an unheralded school and a prize pilfering from the Angels by the Mike Elias

administration in a trade for now-retired Dylan Bundy.  I was fearful that Bradish's sprained ulnar collateral ligament (UCL) might lead to Tommy John surgery but so far the prescription of rest and a platelet-rich injection has been successful.


On Sunday May 26 in only his 5th start of the season, Bradish threw 7 no-hit innings and 103 pitches against those struggling White Sox. He really emptied the tank striking out the last two batters in the 7th.  It is a measure of how rare no-hitters will be in the future that even I, who loves the drama of that rare accomplishment of a no-hit game, accepted his removal after 7 innings.  So did Bradish.


Tomorrow for Columbia baseball won't come until late February.  Seeded first in the second annual 4-team Ivy league post-season tournament, they got swept for the second year in a row over the weekend of May 17-19.  They led the eventual champion Penn Quakers in the top of the 8th at our home field in northern Manhattan, but the second-seeded Phladelphians would not be denied.  They boast the Ivy League Player of the Year senior third baseman Wyatt Henseler from Hackensack, NJ.


Penn will represent the Ivy League in the Charlottesville regional facing top seed Virginia at noon on Fri May 31.  St. johns will face Mississippi State at 7p. All games in this first round of the NCAA tourney will be broadcast on ESPN+.


Other games of interest to fans in the Northeast are in top seed North Carolina going against Long Island at 6p with Wofford & LSU playing the earlier


At the U of Georgia in Athens, the Bulldogs will face Army at 1p followed by Georgia Tech v UNC Wilmington at 7p 


At Oklahoma State in Stillwater, the host team will face Niagara 7p.  Earlier Florida meets Big Ten playoff champion Nebraska at 3p.


At U of Oklahoma in Norman, UConn meets Duke and host Sooners play Oral Roberts.


In local high school playoff news, the PSAL quarter-finals are set for Tu May 28 at 330p.

Inwood v Richmond Hill, Forest Park Victory Field in Queens on Woodhaven and Myrtle Aves, Diamond #1

Beacon v John Jay, Parade Grounds in Bklyn, Diamond #3

Monroe v West 50th St Campus at Randalls Island, Field #48

Luperon (slayer of #1 seed Tottenville) vs Grand St Campus, American Legion Field #1 in Canarsie, Brooklyn


Semis will start on F May 31 at sites TBA, best of 3 series. Final for all three divisions will be either M June 10 or Tu June 11 at tentatively Yankee Stadium.  Check psal.org for the latest information. 


Before I close, here's a tip of the hat to MASNsports.com reporter Roch Kubatko for his informative interview on May 22 with former Orioles first baseman Trey Mancini.  He's living in Miami now. Only 32, he hasn't been signed by any team after not making the Marlins roster after a good spring training. He is not ready to retire but the best news is that he is cancer-free.  All his checkups have been positive.  


That's all for now.  I'm off to Cooperstown to give a talk at the annual Symposium on Baseball and American Culture.  My topic this year is "Remembering Birdie Tebbetts (1912-1999); Baseball's Last Idealist".  More on that adventure when I check in again early next month.

Always remember:  Take it easy but take it, and Stay Positive, Test Negative.

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