TOP OF THE TOWN – I don’t understand the Mariners. How can you continue to put in the lineup a guy who is hitting under .100 as Jarred Kelenic is? It screws up the lineup for one thing. If you are hitting in front of Kelenic you are not going to get anything good to hit because they will want to pitch to Kelenic instead. And the guy behind Kelenic is not going to get an opportunity to drive in runs because chances are extremely good Kelenic won’t be on base. What are t he Mariners thinking? Send Kelenic to Tacoma where he can regain his bearings and adjust not only his mental approach but allow him to relax and just play ball without the eyes of the world on him. See ball, hit ball. That’s all he needs to do. And he can’t do it in the big leagues right now, so get him out of there. … I’m not sad to see LeBron James out of the NBA playoffs. He is a great player, but I always see his weakness. He’s not a great defender and he’s a front-runner. When things are going well, LeBron is all smiles and more than happy to yuck it up. When they are going bad, LeBron has a tendency to quit. Twice in the series loss to the Phoenix Suns he took himself out and sat passively on the sidelines while his team took a beating. Don’t get me wrong, LeBron has done and probably will continue to do good things off the court, such as starting a school for needy kids. He’s one of the good guys. I just don’t think he’s all in when things don’t go his way on the court. I know one thing for sure; I would not want to guard him when he drives to the basket. He’s six-foot-eight and half inches tall and about 260 pounds of muscle and when he starts going toward the basket I don’t blame defenders for stepping out of his way. I know I would. … I thought the Milwaukee Bucks would stop the basketball express train that is the Brooklyn Nets. But the Nets easily won the first playoff game against the Bucks, and did it without James Harden who injured a hamstring 43 seconds into the game and sat out the 115-107 victory. If Harden isn’t able to play in the remaining playoff games, I like the Bucks’ chances. … The Mets’ pitcher Jacob deGrom is flirting with history. He has a 0.62 ERA through his first nine starts, which is lowest of any pitcher in his first nine starts since the ERA became an official stat in 1913. The full-season record for ERA is held by Butch Leonard of the Boston Red Sox. Leonard had a 0.96 EERA in 1914.  Big bad Bob Gibson’s 1.12 for the St. Louis Cardinals in 1968 is third. Chicago Cubs’ Mordecai Brown is second with the 1.04 he set in 1906. In an era where pitchers are throwing in the middle to high 90s, deGrom is leading the pack. He averages 99 with his fastball and his slider averages 92. What I don’t understand is how MLB batters can even hit a fastball ranging in the mid to high 90s.  It seems to me you would have to start your swing as you get off the bus from the hotel to the ballpark to catch up with them. … I saw a “Storied” documentary on former LSU baseball coach Skip Bertman and, boy, does that ring bells for me. I have always said, “You are what you think you are” and Bertman bought that philosophy to the Tigers in 1983 as he built a baseball powerhouse that included five national championships. He got his players to believe not only in themselves, but their teammates. His famous tool was “Hold the Rope.”  He asks if you are holding a rope on a cliff what teammate do you want holding the other end. The answer is not just one specific teammate, but all your teammates. You trust and play for each other, you can win championships. There is one scene in the documentary where the Tigers are down to their last out and trailing by one run in a national championship game and the No. 9 hitter walks to the plate. There are two runners on base and the No. 9 hitter with little power blasts a shot over the right field fence to give the Tigers their national title. Bertman later became the athletic director at LSU. He’s now 83 and retired. There are many things I have learned in a long life (and hopefully I will learn more before I leave), but the two that I thing can fit anywhere for anybody is the “You are what you think you are” and “You must love yourself first before you can love others.” I will add that love is the foundation of life. There is one guy now living in Florida who is just the opposite of love. He’s the king of hate. Love will eventually conquer his BS, his con, of hate. That’s it for today. Stay safe.

Be well pal.

Be careful out there.

Have a great day.

You are loved.