Archive for April, 2021

Selena 50

Selena would be 50 today.  She was just fixing to turn 23 when she was murdered. “Selena” the movie is one of those flicks that I just stop and watch if I come across it.  I last saw it at my Dad’s house. What could have been. I miss her so much.

What’s up with State Rep. Harold Dutton supporting constitutional carry? 

Constitutional carry. Voter suppression. Anti-trans kids.  We have an extremist Texas legislature. What an embarrassment.

The Harris County Elections Administrator sent out a press release this morning and included the following:

The following jurisdictions are contracting with Harris County for the upcoming election: City of Pasadena, City of Humble, City of Missouri City, City of Nassau Bay, City of South Houston, City of Southside Place, City of Webster, City of West University Place, Cy-Champ PUD, East Lake Houston Management District, Goose Creek CISD dist. 1, Goose Creek CISD dist. 2, Goose Creek CISD dist. 5, HC FWSD 001A, HC MUD 170, HC MUD 217, HC WCID 001, HC WCID 070, Humble ISD, Lee College District, NW HC MUD 005, Pasadena ISD, Sunbelt FWSD defined area, Timber Lane UD, Trail of the Lakes MUD, HC MUD 081, HC MUD 082, HC UD 006. 

70,000 vote by mail applications have been sent to voters 65 and older that reside in the jurisdictions participating in the election. The deadline to return an application to vote by mail is Tuesday, April 20.  

As of this morning, a little over 3,000 mail ballots have been submitted.

Early voting in person begins on Monday.  There are a few drive thru locations.  On April 26, the early voting hours will be 7 am to 10 pm.

From CBS Sports:

The Atlantic League, an eight-team independent partner league of Major League Baseball, will experiment with moving the pitcher’s mound back 12 inches in 2021, the leagues announced Wednesday.

I am sure the baseball purist won’t like this.  Right now, it is 60 feet and 6 inches from the mound to home plate. They will experiment with 61 feet and 6 inches. Back in the late 1960s, they lowered the height of the mound.  I won’t sweat it.

The Astros are in Seattle this weekend.

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Here is the headline from today’s front page of the Chron hard copy:

Not playing ball with virus

Commentary has not let my guard down.  I still mask up and carry around hand sanitizer.  I am also fully vaccinated.  COVID still rules in my book.  Not enough folks are vaccinated.  I saw a poll yesterday where 40% or so GOPers were not inclined to get the shot.  The latest with the Johnson and Johnson shot just proves that stuff is still messed up out there.

Let me give you snippets from three separate Chron stories today:

According to Harris County’s COVID-19 guidance, residents should avoid all unnecessary contact with others. They should not go to bars or barbecues or ballgames. They should work from home if possible and leave only for errands, such as groceries or medicine.

Hardly any of the county’s 4.8 million residents appear to be following this advice now. Gov. Greg Abbott fully reopened Texas last month and nixed the mask mandate. Youth sports have resumed, houses of worship again welcome in-person parishioners and 21,765 fans attended the Astros home opener at Minute Maid Park.

Yet, for 42 consecutive weeks, Harris County has been at its highest COVID-19 threat level, red, even though the virus metrics here have improved significantly since January and other counties have relaxed their guidance for residents. Though local officials have no authority to issue COVID-19 restrictions, Harris appears to be the only of Texas’s 254 counties to still urge residents to remain at home.

And this:

The Astros will be without four key players —  Jose Altuve, Alex Bregman, Yordan Alvarez and Martin Maldonado – indefinitely because of MLB’s COVID-19 health and safety protocols.

The loss of those four, plus infielder Robel Garcia, is a brutal blow for a team already in a mid-April funk and a reminder that baseball is still operating in a pandemic.

And this:

Lance McCullers Jr. questioned Major League Baseball’s decision to proceed with the Astros’ scheduled game against the Detroit Tigers despite missing five players due to health and safety protocols.

“I’ll just say that we felt that it would have been better if we weren’t there today, we felt that would have been the smartest thing to do, but we were overruled,” said McCullers, the Astros’ player representative to the union.

I like Lance and I watched him get nailed last night.  There were also 14,000 plus at last night’s game and most fans were not masking up.  The Astros are not enforcing their own mask mandates.  I won’t be too critical.  They are letting me opt out for now.

Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo is correct to keep the County at a code threat level red.  Even if folks aren’t paying attention.

People are still getting infected, and some are dying.  Who in their right mind would think we are out of the woods? COVID still rules. 

We have lost 5 in a row.  We are playing like an 0-5 team.  We should have won last night with the bases loaded and nobody out in the bottom of the ninth.

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Everybody likes to attribute alright, alright, alright to Matthew McConaughey. 

This is from “Revolution” by The Beatles and sung by John Lennon that came out in 1968:

“Don’t you know it’s gonna be alright, alright, alright.”

Just so you know. “Revolution” was on the B-Side of “Hey Jude.”

Now you know.

Some folks on Twitter like Fox News try to badger Vice President Kamala Harris into doing a press conference about the border.  These guys don’t get it.  The VP isn’t like Donald Trump who listened to the likes of Fox News.  The VP and the Joe Biden Administration are going to act responsibly.

Former Texas Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst needs to stop hanging out with the opposite sex.  Last year his former girlfriend kicked his arse.  This is from a story online this morning:

Former Texas Lieutenant Governor David Dewhurst was arrested Tuesday in Dallas on a charge of domestic violence, police say.

The Dallas Police Department announced the arrest in a news release shortly before midnight.

According to police, officers were called to a disturbance in the 3300 block of West Mockingbird Lane, near Dallas Love Field. When they arrived, they met with a woman who said she was physically assaulted by a man she knew.

The investigation led officers to identifying Dewhurst, 75, as a suspect, police said.

What else can you say?

We have a 6-5 team. We have lost four in a row at home.  We are playing like an 0-4 team.   I am not going to sweat it.

I am back to listening more and more to The Beatles Channel on SiriusXM.

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Liar, Liar

Sigh.  From the Chron today:

Texas’ vaccination rate per capita puts it towards the bottom among all states.

Rice University health economic Vivian Ho said the state’s comparatively low vaccination rates are due in part to Texas’ decision to administer doses through its hospital systems, many of which are in urban areas and already had information on patients that made outreach efforts easier.

“We went for the low-hanging fruit,” she said. “The state decided to send the bulk of its initial doses to the hospital systems, and so its very easy to start there… But once you’re done with that, you have got to pivot and figure out how to send those doses elsewhere.”

She and other public health experts have for months said the state needs to do more to increase vaccination and education efforts in rural counties or low-income neighborhoods in urban areas.

That’s Gov. Greg Abbott’s lack of leadership.  Spurs’ Coach Popovich ripped Abbott a new one yesterday.

The Chron caught a GOP Texas State Senator telling a big lie.  I mentioned yesterday State Sen. Bryan Hughes going on CNN Sunday and Pamela Brown eating his lunch. Here is from the Chron:

In defending his controversial voting bill on CNN on Sunday, Texas state Sen. Bryan Hughes claimed half a dozen times that the attorney general’s office had 400 open voter fraud cases.

“That’s the fact,” Hughes, R-Mineola, said in an interview with CNN host Pamela Brown. “It’s documented. There’s no question about that.”

Yet that number is almost 10 times larger than the number of people with pending voter fraud charges in Texas, which is 43, according to data from the attorney general’s office. Only one of those pending cases stems from the 2020 election, in which more than 11 million Texans cast ballots.

Donald Trump told like eight kazillion lies that were documented.  Some like Sen. Hughes think it is ok to lie.  It isn’t ok.  He got caught.

Voting by mail in the upcoming May 1 Uniform Election in Harris County is picking up.  We can thank the Harris County Elections Administrator for sending out the mail ballot applications to those 65 and older.  Sen. Hughes’ racist voter suppression bill wouldn’t allow the Elections Administrator to send out mail ballot applications. Think about that.

If it was up to Commentary, I would not have provided a video tribute on El Grande to former Astros Skipper A.J. Hinch like they did last night before the game.  If folks want to cheer him when he is announced during the line-ups that is one thing. He was suspended for a year.  Oh, well.  I wasn’t there.

Then we lost the game.

I am opting out for Phase 2 at The Yard.  It is wait and see.

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Abbott Joke

Fox News’ Chris Wallace made Gov. Greg Abbott look like a dummy yesterday. Here is from an MSN.com story yesterday:

Wallace continued: “Governor, there were thousands of complaints of sexual abuse at migrant shelters during the Trump years. Not to say that what’s going on now is right but we couldn’t find one instance of you complaining and calling that out when President Trump was president.”

Abbott, meanwhile, largely dodged Wallace’s question, claiming there were “multiple differences between what happened in the Trump administration” and the current White House.

Abbott looked like the Abbott we all know too well.

Texas GOP State Sen. Bryan Hughes, the sponsor of SB 7, the racist voter suppression bill, told CNN’s Pamela Brown yesterday, that there are 400 voter fraud cases in Texas.  Show us, dude. That’s new to us. Pamela Brown ate his lunch for sure.

Royko had a hilarious response to my take on Texas losing business because of the racist voter suppression bill:

I guess someone needs to point out that the Dems mislead when they object to proper ID’s, as they have mastered voter fraud.

Who doesn’t need ID, except when it comes to trying to vote multiple times?

The state has already lost a lot from cancelled events, and, even though not a single condition currently exists in Harris County that the pequeña Comandante cited as the basis of the decision by to declare a condition Red, and shut down Harris County, the condition Red order continues today.

Was it politically tone deaf to be posting pictures frolicking on a Galveston beach without a mask while the “sheeple” are ordered to stay home and forced to wear a face diaper everywhere in Harris County?

As far as declining attendance to watch a bunch of spoiled rich players (some exposed as cheaters) worship the Burning, Looting Maoists in stadiums taxpayers are paying for, seems to have started prior to the push to make it harder for Dems to steal the vote.

That’s funny.

It was good to see Japanese professional golfer Hideki Matsuyama win the Masters.  If you know what I mean.

From BleacherReport.com from this past weekend:

The Houston Chronicle fired veteran NFL reporter Aaron Wilson because of comments made on WEEI radio in Boston concerning allegations of sexual assault and misconduct against Texans quarterback Deshaun Watson.

Wilson’s departure was first reported by Diana Moskovitz and Kalyn Kahler of Defector.com. 

Speaking to The Greg Hill Show on March 19, Wilson characterized the allegations against Watson as a “money grab” and compared settling the suits as negotiating with terrorists.

I could not find the firing story on the Chron’s webpage.


Former Astro Joe Musgrove, now with the Padres, tossed a no-no against the Rangers at Globe Life this past Friday evening.

There have been five no-nos tossed against the Colt 45s/Astros since 1962.  We have never had a no-no tossed against us in H-Town.  We were a home team once when a no-no was tossed against us.  That was in 2008, against the Cubbies when we played the two Ike Games at Miller Park in Milwaukee, then known at Chicago North.  Now you know.

Former Astros Skipper A.J. Hinch is now the Skipper of the Tigers. The Tigers are in town for three starting this evening.  He paid a price.  He sat out for a year while the players didn’t and played.  I wonder if he is hearing it from the boo birds.

I still don’t know why the Astros had yesterday, a Sunday, off.

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Money Loser

The GOP Texas House Speaker said yesterday that he would be willing to sit with business leaders and go over the voter suppression bill line by line.  He doesn’t have to do that.  He just needs to read the Perryman Group’s analysis of the bill’s financial impact.  It is a money loser. Here is from Forbes.com: 

The Texas economy could take a massive hit if the state enacts new voting restrictions—potentially costing the state’s economy tens of billions of dollars and tens of thousands of jobs—according to a study from the Texas-based economic research firm the Perryman Group, as the Texas legislature Thursday moved one step closer to making the proposals.

The potential loss of conventions, major sporting events and tourism could cost the state $16.7 billion in annual gross product by 2025, and nearly 150,000 jobs, according to the study.

Internal factors, like decreased business activity and lower wages in the state, could lead to the loss of $14.7 billion in household purchasing power by 2025, according to the Perryman Group.

Retail trade would take the biggest hit, according to the study, losing more than 50,000 jobs from drops in tourism and economic development alone.

Not only is the bill a vote killer.  It’s a jobs killer.

The only folks who like the bill are racists voter suppressors.  They are the minority on this.  Don’t they get it?

On a related note.  More folks are voting by mail in the May 1 Uniform Elections thanks to the vote by mail applications that were sent out by the Harris County Elections Administrator. If it were up to the racists voter suppressors, these folks in Baytown, West U and elsewhere would not be voting. Think about that.

I watched the game last night.  I saw a lot of folks not wearing masks.  They were not eating or drinking either.  The Astros didn’t appear to be enforcing their mask rule.  I have no idea who in the bunch was fully vaccinated.  I have no idea who got their first dose or who is carrying the variant.  It really didn’t look like an environment that I would go into.  I will continue to watch from home.

It is nice that we are 6-1 and off to a great start.  We have only played two teams though. It is still nice. It is also early.

The Astros have Sunday off. Someone needs to explain to Commentary why we don’t play on Sunday. That’s a first. I think.

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Home Opener

Gov. Greg Abbott went to San Antonio yesterday to call out the treatment of migrant kids at a facility that is being run by the federal government.  Abbott says he is having the Texas Rangers and DPS investigate.

Let that sink in for a moment. 

He’s a goddamn Governor.  He can pick up the phone and call Vice President Kamala Harris, who has been tasked with dealing with this issue, and get to the bottom of this.  There really are ways to handle problems if you go about it properly.

Grow up and quit acting like a punkarse immature politico. Leadership isn’t part of his DNA.

He’s an embarrassment. This is about misdirection.  He wants us to forget about his handling of the pandemic, the Big Freeze, the rental assistance program and STAAR testing.

What is the point in asking this clown where he was when they were snatching babies from moms on the border in 2018 and 2019.

Here is from today’s Chron:

Fans going to Minute Maid Park for the Astros’ home opener Thursday night can expect the following policies, which will remain in force for the near future:

No bags will be allowed in the venue, with the exception of manufacturer designed diaper bags, when accompanied by an infant or small child; medical bags; gallon bags used for bringing food or water into the building; and single compartment clutches, wristlets, and hip/fanny packs that do not exceed nine inches by five inches.

Masks are required at all times except when one is eating or drinking. Eating and drinking are permitted only at ticketed seats.

Fans may enter the ballpark through all standard entrances, which will open two hours before game time. All fans will be subject to a verbal health screening upon arrival.

Concessions will be cashless at all points of sale. At sections 108, 218 and 315, there will be reverse ATMs that can change cash into an Astros themed debit card.

Commentary won’t be at the Astros home opener today. I am really not sad about it.  The pandemic turned our world upside down and changed things up quite a bit.  I read where they are going to sell 50% of the tickets and call it capacity.  Whatever.  I don’t want to pluck down big bucks to avoid crowds on the concourse, restrooms and Saint Arnold kiosk.

I also don’t want to be sitting in my seats with a mask on and having to lift it up every time I sip on my $14 Amber or Art Car.

There is just too much we don’t know about COVID-19 and the variants. I don’t feel like taking a risk.

To those that are going, play it safe and be careful.

Play ball, I guess.

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Commentary watched Tony Buzbee’s press availability yesterday on Deshaun Watson.  It was very difficult to watch and very disturbing.  If Watson doesn’t have a good defense, I don’t see how he takes another snap in the NFL.

GOPers who are supporting the racist voter suppression legislative proposals are not happy with the massive pushback they are getting from the public and business leaders.  They are on the wrong side of history and they know it.

U.S. Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell warned America’s CEOs to stay out of politics, but their financial contributions were still welcome.  That’s hilarious.

Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick is all riled up over the massive opposition to SB 7, the racist voter suppression bill.  Keep up the opposition and recruit more folks to oppose this racist voter suppression sh_t.  Make it hard for Patrick and other MFers like McConnell to support this crap.  They are cracking for sure.

Commentary got this on my take on the major partisan redistricting of Texas’ Appellate Courts:

RE: Kristen LaFreniere comment. As drafted, SB 11 provides the “surgical” fix of a few very minor anomalies in the appellate system.

But it’s being used as a Trojan horse for a GOP takeover of most of the appellate system through the committee substitute version. Sen. Huffman would have the media and the public believe that it’s not a redistricting bill, but the House counterpart bills (HB 339 HB 2613 were actually referred to redistricting. See here:

There would be no doubt if the text of the much more far-reaching substitute bill were actually shown on the Lege’s website.

As for the purported justification for the sweeping changes, the appellate docket imbalance/equalization argument is a sham. Only about 5% of all cases are transferred and this is done as needed. That’s because the need for transfers varies over time among the appellate courts, The direction and size of adjustment flows is not predictable because the underlying dynamics of appellate activity is not predictable, especially not with the disruptions last year due to COVID, which crated a severe backlog in the trial courts. If the Austin Court of Appeals is chronically over-burdened because it gets more government entity/admin law appeals, it could simply be enlarged in size, or more visiting justices could be used.

Tags tweeted this after the game yesterday in which Carlos Correa hit a two run dinger in the top of the ninth to lead the Astros to a 4-2 win over the Angels:

Carlos Correa: “I like hitting late in the game when the game is on the line. That’s when I feel sexy.”

Sexy, Carlos.

46 years-ago today, the Astros rainbow jersey made its debut against The ATL. Now you know.

From ESPN.com:

The rainbow uniform was introduced in 1975. It was a radical design for its time — nothing remotely like it had ever appeared on a baseball diamond. It was also the perfect embodiment of MLB’s Technicolor era, as a variety of factors (new fabrics, new tailoring concepts, the rise of color television, the loosening of longstanding cultural dress codes) helped to reshape the idea of what a baseball uniform could be.

The Astros wore the rainbows through 1986. More than three decades later, the rainbow design is now entrenched as part of MLB’s visual bedrock (the Astros have worn it as a throwback at least nine times since 1999). While time may have made this uniform more familiar, it hasn’t softened its audacity. It’s still a radical design, and it’s still unlike anything ever seen on a big league diamond. It’s simultaneously dated and timeless. It is, essentially, a category unto itself.

Moreover, while the rainbow uni has become a fan favorite over the years, it has lots of nuances and details that many fans are unaware of. With that in mind, here are 10 things you might not know about one of baseball’s most notable uniforms.

1. The rainbow uni was designed by an ad agency. If you’ve ever looked at the rainbow uni and wondered who dreamed it up, the answer is the advertising firm McCann Erickson, which was hired by the Astros to redesign the team’s look for the 1975 season. It would be fascinating to see the company’s original files and to know the identities of the people who worked on the project, right? The good news in that regard is that McCann Erickson still exists (it’s now known simply as McCann). The bad news is that a company spokesman said the firm no longer has any original sketches or other archival paperwork. The Astros haven’t saved any original documents, either. Sigh.

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Reckless Rangers

Commentary’s Dad went to Baylor.  I wasn’t with him last night.  I was with him Saturday when the Bears played the Coogs.  My 97-year-old Dad talked smack for two hours watching the game on Saturday.  He had me laughing and I have to say that never gets old.

The USA should have done a lot better against the pandemic this past year.  We have been let down by a number of GOP elected officials.  Don’t get me wrong. There were some GOP elected officials who were outstanding.  There were far too many who fumbled and were cowards like Gov. Greg Abbott.

Now check this from the Daily Beast:

Montana Gov. Greg Gianforte, who rescinded the state’s mask mandate weeks after taking office, has tested positive for COVID-19. The 59-year-old Republican got the first dose of the Pfizer vaccine last Thursday, but since full immunity doesn’t kick in until after the second dose, he would have still been vulnerable to infection. The Billings Gazette reports that he developed symptoms on Sunday after attending Easter services, tested positive on Monday, and will now quarantine for 10 days. It’s not clear how he contracted the virus or if he has infected others, but six members of the state legislature have also tested positive since January.

That is not surprising.

The Texas Rangers were reckless yesterday.  “Today” led off their program this morning with the Ranger game and fans packed together, many without masks. I read a story where some Ranger fan said they were taking a “calculated risk” by attending the super spreader home opener.  It was more like a dangerous guess.  Fuc_ing morons.

The GOP wants to boycott MLB and Coca Cola. Commentary is Ok with Gov. Greg Abbott boycotting MLB.  If we win the World Series, his sorry arse won’t be around for any of the playoff games, and he won’t ride in the Downtown parade. 

Donald Trump wants a Coke boycott, and he took a photo with a Coke not fully concealed.

I can’t remember the last food or drink product I boycotted.  Maybe table grapes back in the 70s on behalf of farmworkers.

It looks like Mike Collier will be running for Lt. Governor again.  We have Joe Jaworski running for AG.  Those fellas are Ok.  We need a diverse ticket that looks like the Texas Democratic Party.  Commentary is talking about folks of color, women and from the LGBTQ community.

I just saw on “Today” that Peeps – you know, the candy – will be made into a movie.

I got this from the team yesterday:

We wanted to inform you of a brand new parking opportunity at Minute Maid Park. Located on the corner of Preston & Crawford St. across from the Center Field Gate, this small but convenient lot is the only lot on the west side of the stadium.

Full season access to parking spaces in Lot E is available on a first-come, first-serve basis. 

Now you know.

We lost our first game last night.  We end the roadie with a 3 pm start today in Anaheim.

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Lazy GOPers

When did revamping Texas’ appellate courts become a priority?

Answer: When Democrats started winning again.

Check this from the Chron:

The first redistricting battle of the 2021 legislative session is here — but it’s not about state or congressional districts.

Sen. Joan Huffman, a former Harris County district court judge, is proposing an overhaul of the Texas appellate court district boundaries in an effort, she says, to help balance the workload. Under the current setup, which hasn’t been restructured in decades, the state frequently has to transfer cases from high-volume courts to lower-volume courts.

“Texans routinely explain that these transfers lead to confusion, frustration and increased cost,” said Huffman, a Houston Republican.

Senate Bill 11, which was voted out of committee on a 3-2 party line vote Thursday, would cut the number of appellate districts in half to seven.

But Democrats have described the proposal as a power grab after a blue wave helped them win majorities on half of the 14 appellate courts in 2018 and greatly increased diversity on the bench. The party, along with appellate court attorneys and judges, also worry that the new districts would reduce the voting power of minorities.

And this:

Second District Court of Appeals Chief Justice Bonnie Sudderth, a Republican who is chair of the Texas Council of Chiefs, said the bill would cause a disruption “at every level of our operations.”

And this:

Kristen LaFreniere, an appellate lawyer from Lubbock, said it was “nonsensical” to seek increased efficiency by reducing the number of courts. She said she’d rather see a more surgical fix to the overlapping areas, as proposed in other bills.

“It’s kind of hard to look at this and say that’s not partisan,” LaFreniere said, a self-described conservative Republican from West Texas. “It does seem to be more of a response to the shift left on some of the courts that we’ve seen. And that concerns me, Republican or otherwise, to see our courts being used in a political way.”

Here is the entire Chron article: Houston lawmaker’s proposal to slash number of appellate courts threatens diversity, critics say (houstonchronicle.com).

Even fellow GOPers think this is flawed. Rather than compete for the voters on ideas, some lazy GOPers like Sen. Huffman, would rather change the rules.  Pitiful.

This is what GOP Tarrant County Judge Glen Whitley says about voter suppression bill SB 7:

It’s ridiculous. You’re going to have to reduce the number of machines at the main locations.  People will have to stand in line longer.  If it’s not voter suppression, it’s at least voter inconvenience.

We’re in the middle of a pandemic. We’ve had problems with our electric grid. And they’re screwing around with how many machines we can have in a polling place?

Pure and simple laziness that is turning into racism.

We aren’t taking sh_t anymore.  We are tired of some in the GOP suppressing our vote in broad daylight.  MLB did the right thing and snatched the MLB All Star Game and the MLB Draft away from Georgia.  Take that MFers. 

GOP leaders in the Texas Legislature need to decide if they want to put Texas in the same position. No more MLB All Star Games, Super Bowls, Final Fours, NBA All Star Game, just to name a few.  You are just not picking on Latino and African American voters.  You are picking a fight with democracy and folks have had it.

My bracket had Baylor winning it all.

Babe Ruth of the Yankees set the modern MLB record for runs scored in a season in 1921, scoring 177 times.  Now you know.

I hope you stayed up late Friday night and got to see Jose Altuve score on a sacrifice fly to second base.  That was amazing.  That was hustle.  That was also an RBI for Kyle Tucker.

The team certainly opened the season firing away on all fronts. They are averaging 8.75 runs per game. 4-0 baby!

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