What a brave and noble move by the United Nations earlier this month.

The general assembly voted to suspend Russia from the UN’s Human Rights Council. Stunning. The vote was 93 in favour, 24 against and 58 abstaining. Because the resolution received a two-thirds majority — minus abstentions, because why have an opinion on the Russian invasion, right? — it passed and Russia is off of the council. What an empty gesture by an absolutely empty body. Never mind the fact that only 93 of the 193 member nations were for it but that’s just one country off of the council that has no business being on it. Now do China, Cuba and Eritrea. You know it won’t because it’s the United Nations.

Anyway:

A ‘sellout’ in Tampa Bay

Opening day of any new Major League Baseball season is a big deal. All the hopes and dreams for a fresh campaign on day one and most fans knowing by at least day three that it’s all going to crap.

In Tampa Bay, it could be one of those years where things could be really good and it all started off on the right foot at the box office. Or, at least that’s what the team wants you to believe. Sellouts on opening day are expected in most ballparks and the Tampa Bay Rays announced a sellout for game one on April 8. It was the 16th time the team had sold out opening day. But there’s a catch.

You see, the Rays didn’t bother opening the upper level of Tropicana Field, its home diamond, and from the looks of it, it was barely half-full in the seats that were sold. Teams pull this sort of thing to try and gin up support. Oh, look — we had a sellout and what a day it was. Something teams do nowadays is tell people that because all of the tickets made available have been sold, it’s a sellout, even if it looks like half of those who “bought” tickets bothered to even show up. And not selling every seat is window-dressing, plain and simple.

Don’t fret, though … good seats will still be available at almost every Rays home game this season.

Come on, baby … light my bat

If you haven’t yet had a chance to watch the Savannah Bananas, check them out. They are a legitimate baseball team but they act like the Harlem Globetrotters in many ways and they’re fun to watch.

But one game versus the Savannah Party Animals had plenty of people talking simply because of one of the wackiest things ever seen on the diamond. Zak Whalin of the Party Animals took his place in the batter’s box during a game earlier this month with a flaming bat. Yes, you read that right. His bat was literally on fire as he dug in. He ran the count to one ball and one strike before stroking one up the middle for a base hit. Whalin was very nearly gunned down at first as the throw from the Bananas’ centre-fielder was bobbled by the first baseman.

The Bananas have become quite the draw because they’ve realized that this generation enjoys watching baseball in 90-second increments on TikTok. I still love going to the park and watching the entire game because I’m old, but since Greg Maddux isn’t pitching anymore, three hours to watch a baseball game doesn’t interest a lot of people. The Bananas seem to have found the magic elixir, so give them a watch. You won’t be disappointed.

And finally …

Good Idea: Leaving a sporting event when asked to by security.

Bad Idea: Leaving a sporting event in handcuffs after you’ve punched a cop.

Leave it to Toronto Blue Jays fans to show us how it’s done.

Opening day at Rogers Centre (SkyDome because it’s still the Dome!) on April 8 was eventful in the 500 Level, which is another way of saying it’s Tuesday in downtown Toronto, so three cheers for the fireballers in the value-priced seats. Anyway, a couple apparently rubbed some of the bleacher creatures the wrong way and that was enough for security to come up and check it out. It escalated to Toronto Police heading up the stairs to get involved and that’s where the fun began.

As the dastardly duo was being led down and out of the building, the male half appears to push the female half down a couple of steps. The female, thinking it was the cop, decided to turn around and slug the officer. Yeah, we know how that ended. As an old colleague once told me: stay off the booze and out of the news. Obviously, these two looked as if they had been saucing it for most of the evening and the woman, who’s been identified as a 27-year-old but no name, was carted away with two new bracelets.

Canada is back, baby! What pandemic? Justin Trudeau tried to kill any emotion in this country for more than two years but we have healed! I have seen the light and thy name is Blue Jays fan!

Until next time, folks …

James McCarthy

After being a nomad around North America following my semi-debauched post-secondary days, I put down my roots in Yellowknife in 2006. I’ve been keeping this sports seat warm with NNSL for the better...

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