A couple parting items to chat over between hoops playoffs this weekend:
1) So last night 12-year-old Mackenzie Brown, who happens to be a girl, threw a no-hitter in her Little League game. This prompted an insanely stupid segment on Fox News, during which the hyperactive "Live Desk" anchors yammered at her like a pair of coked-out parrots. One even called her "Mackenzie Phillips." Seriously.
But that wasn't the worst of it. The worst of it was when we found out that, despite throwing a freakin' perfect game, this is young Mackenzie's last game playing baseball. She has to play softball next year. Because there aren't co-ed teams after her age group.
Does this make anyone else really sad?
2) Last Sunday's New York Times sports section published a story discussing Indy Racing League driver Danica Patrick's options once her contract with Andretti Green racing is up this year. For those not familiar with auto racing (and who is, really?), Patrick is the first woman to ever win an I.R.L. race (she won in Japan last year), and she wowed the racing world in 2005 by almost winning the Indianapolis 500, which she lead for 19 laps before finally finishing in fourth place, the highest place ever for a woman.
Open-wheeled I.R.L. racing is even less popular, at least in the United States, than Nascar stock racing, however, and Patrick reportedly is mulling a switch to the high-profile league, home to a good-ol' boy network unparalleled in its good-ol'-boyness than any other sports league of any kind.
The pluses and minuses of such a switch make for interesting fodder, but what also makes for interested fodder are some of the story's quotes from two Nascar folks about what kind of effect it would have if Patrick were to move to their league. Behold:
"Sixty percent of the Nascar crowd is male, and they like the current drivers, but there's not any pretty ones out there." –Humpy Wheeler, former president of Lowe's Motor Speedway in North Carolina
"As a woman and a cute girl, she would be a special kind of sensation." –Max Muhleman, of Private Sports Consulting in North Carolina