All around the America's Cup Pavilion the message was written loud and clear: It was time to wrap things up. The Ben & Jerry's vendors had been made scarce; the merchandise tent was locked and empty. "GOAT MILK ONLY" was scrawled on a big white discarded plastic barrel, and it was hard not to imagine all the customers who'd requested a ladle from it over the past few days and weeks, their faces blending into one lactose-free-please composite.
All that was left of the bar that had served everything except water (for that, you had to go to a different station to fill up a reusable container toted from home or purchased at significant markup on-site) was a rectangle of raw, peeled-back soil. The bones of a Nespresso lounge still remained, but not for long: Construction workers were well into the dismantling process, and trucks idled everywhere to take whatever they could away.
In case you were busy getting taken aback by the presence of hockey news in your Twitter feed, here's what you missed in sports on Wednesday:
Max Scherzer got his 21st win and the Detroit Tigers clinched the AL Central with a 1-0 win over the Minnesota Twins. "Fine, fine," said every sabermetrician in the world in unison. "We get it. Scherzer is the Cy Young winner, fine, fine. Fine," before adding a passive-aggressive "it's not the worst decision you guys have made — he is leading in fWAR, which you probably haven't even heard of" while throwing their arms up in the air all at once. Then every sabermetrician muttered under their breaths, "He might not even be the best pitcher on the Tigers, but hey, who are we to know things," adding a derisive "as far as you know, we're in our mothers' basements" in one harmonic voice.
"Eliminated," Yankees general manager Brian Cashman said, lying flat on his back, after New York's 8-3 loss to the Tampa Bay Rays. "I am no more. The Yankees are no more." Cashman let his mind think back on the odyssey he had taken this season to arrive at this moment: the Jeter injury, the Rodriguez suspension, the retirement of Rivera, the consistent presence of Jayson Nix in his lineup, until of course Nix got hurt. Everyone had gotten hurt. Cashman balled his fists and yelled at his ceiling, "Who am I?" Suddenly, a great shaking took hold of his office, and the ceiling split before him, as the hand of God itself reached down to grab the balding, drunken GM. "You are the Cash-Man," God intoned with a surprisingly feminine voice, as he was lifted into the air. "You are my Cash-Man. And to prove it—" Suddenly, God threw Cashman in the air, a flash of lightning showed Cashman he was falling back to his office floor amid a rain of American currency, and for just a second Cashman glimpsed the face of God. "Mrs. Steinbrenner?" A clap of thunder sounded, and all went black.
In case you were busy getting bad news from Dr. James Andrews, because that guy has never once given good news in his life, here's what you missed in sports on Wednesday:
Miami starter Jose Fernandez dominated with his arm and bat, throwing seven stellar innings and blasting his first career home run, as the Marlins beat the division-leading Braves, 5-2. Fernandez's outing was not without controversy, however, as both benches cleared after Fernandez indulged himself by watching his home run. "I'm disappointed. He's a great kid, but he let this whole city down," said Marlins manager Mike Redmond after the game. "I mean, this is Miami. You can't just stand around in Miami to check out something because it looks good. This is a city all about hard work and discipline, not about showing off and preening."
New York Yankees captain Derek Jeter has been shut down for the remainder of the season, leaving new acquisition and defensive whiz Brendan Ryan as the Yankees presumptive starting shortstop for their playoff push. "Darn," said Yankees starter Andy Pettitte as he high-fived fellow starter Hiroki Kuroda. "Man, that's tough for Derek. I'm gutted. Just totally gutted. For him." Pettitte then did a giddy shuffle and mimed a shortstop going confidently to his left for CC Sabathia's benefit, before adding, "Don't know how we'll get by without the captain."
During the NBA lockout last fall, Bill Simmons and Jay Kang fantasized about the players breaking off and creating a rebel basketball league. Their proposed name for the alternate universe: The Oracle. After all, as Kang wrote, "we need a commissioner/bankroller [and] Larry Ellison has to be the man to spearhead this league." Among Ellison's bona fides as the ultimate (slightly unhinged) sports sugar daddy? "He spent $200 million to win an effing yachting competition."
At least. The Sports Business Journal actually estimated the cost of Ellison's 2010 America's Cup victory to be more like twice that sum; perhaps they were tacking on all the legal fees Ellison racked up along the way. And the spending hasn't stopped since. With the America's Cup, which for decades had never left Newport, set to take place in U.S. waters for the first time since San Diego hosted back in 1995, Ellison has doubled down on his mission. He no longer just wants to win the effing yachting competition — he wants the effing yachting competition to win everyone over. Even those who may not know their Sunfish from their starboard.