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One Word

Posted by Brian Mulligan on 5/26/2010 2:44:00 PM

Through the courtesy of Tony Soprano, here’s is one word for all the scribes that are begging for a change or tweak in the format of the Triple Crown series--- FORGETABOUTIT.

The theory of some of these self-proclaimed guardians of the sport is that a Triple Crown winner would somehow change the atmosphere, the vibe, the overall climate of the sport, but the truth of the matter is that a Triple Crown winner would be nothing other than a blip on the equine barometer.

Face it, this is a niche sport and the sooner the geniuses that spout negativism about a non-Triple Crown winner wake up and smell the cannoli, the better for all.

Winning 5 races in three weeks under conditions those runners, which are not yet mature 3-year-olds, is a difficult feat.

So is throwing a perfect game in baseball. That’s why there have only been 19 ‘Perfectos’ in the history of baseball.

Before Dallas Braden’s gem against Tampa on May 9, the last perfect game came in July of last year by Mark Buehrle but before that you had to go back to May of 2004 to review Randy Johnson’s special day against at Atlanta.

To take it a step further, the last perfect game before Johnson’s was in 1999.

Did major league baseball gather and whisper and try to move the pitching mound in 6 feet? No, they went to the ballpark and rolled out the ball the next day.

If a National Football League team loses 5 or 8 games in a row, does the NFL say you guys only have to go 75 yards to score next week?

No, the schedule is done, tough luck, move on.

I was so lucky to watch Affirmed train early in his sophomore season at Santa Anita in 1978 and had no concept how great a horse he was to become.

He was special physically and almost a glow was around him in the early morning hours when he was put through the motions by Laz Barrera but racing writers and fans that just woke up from a slumber in the cave next to Osama bin Laden may have forgotten that before the golden age of the 70s, it was 25 years before Secretariat duplicated the Triple Crown feat recorded by Citation in 1948.

Also, remember that since 1980, 10 horses won the first 2 legs of the Triple Crown and 4 of them just failed to turn the ‘triple’ when second.

So FORGETABOUTIT. Leave well enough alone. As Tim Layden in Sports Illustrated recently said: “The Triple Crown, by its very exclusivity, is one of the sport’s rare strengths.”

Well said.


BELMONT TAKING SHAPE

Even with the Derby and Preakness winners licking their collective wounds and staying away from the Belmont Stakes, the prospective field is still light at this point in time.

Setsuko, who would have been a late factor in New York, developed inflammation in his ankles and is out.

That will leave 10 shooting for the money in the Big Apple. Ice Box looms the chalk and would be joined by Fly Down, Drosselmeyer, First Dude, Game on Dude, Make Music for Me, Stately Victor, Spangled Star and Uptowncharlybrown.

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