Clearing out the notebook with one undeniable fact: A no-hitter is a no-hitter

If it’s Friday, and I’m pretty sure it is, time for Little Things That Should Be Bigger Things But Aren’t.

There’s been some debate – not recently but in the not too distant past and I’m just getting around to paying close attention to it – about what actually constitutes a no-hitter in baseball.

It has to do with this abomination that is two seven-inning games in doubleheaders and whether or non a no-hitter in one of them should “count.”

Of course they should.

If the poobahs who run the sport determine in their infinite wisdom that a game shall be seven innings long and a pitcher in one of those games doesn’t allow a hit, he should be credited with a no-hitter.

It’s not his fault that the game was bastardized by changing its length – it made sense last season, it makes no sense this season, I don’t think – and why should he not get due credit?

Sure, it’s unique and not traditional and done under odd circumstances that have changed the very makeup of some games.

But there’s an easy way to differentiate, if you feel they must.

It’s not like baseball is unfamiliar with asterisks or some other denotation to set some “records” apart from others.

So how’s this work in the all-time record book:

NO HITTERS

x-Smith (Toronto vs. Boston, May 22, 2021).

x-Denotes seven inning complete game.

Works for me. If a game is seven innings, and I honestly don’t think they should be this season, and a guy throws a complete game no-hitter, I cannot imagine why it would not be recognized in some fashion.

End o’ rant.

I know nothing much about computers and even less about websites but I do know what I don’t know and I were to be, say, put in charge of developing the single most important website that, for instance, a province ever had to develop, I think I’d (a) enlist the aid of very smart businesses and (b) test the dang thing before putting it out for public consumption.

There’s basically a half dozen submissions for Ye Olde Mailbag in there at the moment. Not a huge surprise because you’ve been a bit slow of late but there’s no reason not to fill it up today, right?

Just click on askdoug@thestar.ca and start typing, okay?

With the Raptors going to finish below .500 for the first time in almost a decade, I fear one of the biggest impacts is going to be on the chance any of them have to be honoured in any end-of-season NBA awards balloting.

There really are only two guys in any kind of serious consideration: Fred VanVleet and OG Anunobyy. They should absolutely be in the conversation for spots on one of the all-defensive teams but I wonder if voters will look at the team’s records and summarily disregard that possibility.

I don’t think the voters, of which I am one, should, especially not in this year when things have been so topsy-turvy but if it comes down to a razor thin margin between this guy and that guy, a team’s record and it’s overall defensive rating is going to be a factor.

And right now, that’s factor weighing against both of the Toronto players.

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So I see that charges have been laid against the Tillsonburg golf course that opened last weekend in clear defiance of pandemic closing regulations.

Now, the idea of closing parks and tennis courts and golf courses was utterly ridiculous and tone deaf and anti-science and reactionary and senseless and entirely predictable from the crowd down at Queen’s Park.

I have not yet read one logical explanation for why Ford and his buddies would absolutely reject scientific evidence that outside activity – with the correct social distancing measures, of course – is needed now and should not be banned.

It was, and is, an idiotic move.

That said, the folks at the golf course had to be charged. It was blatantly thumbing their nose at a law – a ridiculous, bad law, mind you – and there needs to be repercussions for it.

Now, we’ll see what the courts do with the charge and what penalties can or should be levelled but this step was, sadly, necessary.

And I say sadly because the only reason it’s gotten to this point is because a failure of leadership – or commonsense – at Queen’s Park.

Most of you know the affinity I have for old heads on sports teams.

In almost every situation, you need a 10-, 11-, 12-year veteran or two around to help great young talent learn what it takes to win and win big.

Nothing beats accrued wisdom and calm and even if those 30-somethings may have lost a step or two, they more than make up for it with their smarts.

And even with my minimal interest in or knowledge of the pucks, I think the presence of the Thornton and Spezza dudes might be the best thing management’s done over the last year or two.

Those are guys who win, know how to win and can bring youngsters by the strength of their personalities and history.

And since the local squad hasn’t won a single solitary playoff series in about a billion years, they might just be the guys to push them over the top when they’re about to fold in the first round. Again.

We, as they say, shall see.

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