Fun Fact of the Day: Since 2010, Aroldis Chapman has thrown 1,513 pitches at 100+ mph. That’s more than the next 18 pitchers on the list combined.
Carpe Diem. The Chicago Cubs traded 4 players to the New York Yankees to get closer Aroldis Chapman. Chapman only has 1 year left on his contract, which means that the Cubs are really serious about getting better right NOW and taking this team all the way to the World Series! After starting the season blazing hot, the Cubs started slowing down last month, partially because of weakness in their bullpen. Now, they’ve solved that problem by getting Chapman, who is one of the best closers in the game. The Yankees came out ahead on the deal, too. They got Chapman for a big discount last year because he was in the middle of an ugly domestic violence investigation and 30-game suspension.
Stay off that Wacky Tobacky. After serving a year-long suspension in 2015 for smoking marijuana, Cleveland Browns wide receiver Josh Gordon has been reinstated to the NFL. Who is that again? Way back in 2013, Gordon was one of the best wide receivers in the game. Then he tested positive for pot over and over and over again, including one failed test this spring. Clearly, the NFL suspensions and tough love weren’t working. This time the league is giving him a lighter 4-game suspension where he can continue to train with the Browns. They’re hoping spending some quality time with his teammates will set him straight. It definitely can’t be worse than letting him hang out with his usual funemployment buddy, former Browns QB Johnny Manziel.
Seen and Heard
Athletes and role models. Yesterday, basketball legend Michael Jordan donated $2M to groups that help to strengthen relationships between the police and the black communities they serve. This was a big move for MJ, who has tried to stay out of controversial issues in the past. In fact, during the years of his peak popularity he was criticized for ignoring social issues in order to keep up his broad commercial appeal. Now, MJ joins a growing list of basketball stars like Carmelo Anthony, Chris Paul, LeBron James, and Dwyane Wade who have spoken out against the violence of the past several weeks, as well as 4 WNBA teams that have worn warm-up t-shirts with social messages supporting the shooting victims.
Still the NFL’s golden boy. After a 7-month investigation, the NFL cleared retired QB Peyton Manning of allegations that he took HGH. Last year, Al Jazeera released a documentary that accused Manning of having HGH shipped to his wife when he was recovering from neck surgeries in 2011. Peyton got into a tizzy and called the allegations “complete trash.” Now that the NFL has cleared Manning’s name, he can go back to being the squeaky clean, Papa John’s-selling QB we all know and love. You there! Not so fast… The NFL is still investigating the other players named in the documentary including Pittsburgh Steelers linebacker James Harrison and Green Bay Packers linebackers Clay Matthews and Julius Peppers.