Kingston and Callahan Win Dallas City Council Runoffs: Philip Kingston and Rick Callahan won their runoff campaigns this past Saturday. Kingston was the choice of outgoing council member Angela Hunt for her seat. Callahan becomes the representative for Pleasant Grove. With the victories, the Hispanic representation on the city council drops from three to two.
Man Drowns in Plano Golf Course: There is a lot unclear about how a man drowned in a water hazard at The Course at Waters Creek golf course. Who was it? Why was he there? Was he alone? And what’s with Plano? Or, as FrontRow’s music critic (and Plano native) Chris Mosley said on Twitter of the golf course death, “This city’s ability to turn ordinary into tragic is unparalleled.”
Police Association Recovers Smoker: On the street, a $10,000 trailer-mounted smoker is apparently worth $75 in dope.
Rangers Losing Streak Worst in Three Years: The Rangers dropped their sixth game in a row yesterday, making it their worst losing streak since April 2010. Manager Ron Washington held a closed team meeting after Sunday’s game. And speaking of flopping, Dirk Nowitzki doesn’t think it’s a big deal in the NBA.
Breaking the Cycle of Poverty in South Dallas: Tod Robberson wonders how Veronica Jacquez beat the odds in South Dallas. She grew up across the street from the Turner Courts public housing projects, amidst crime and poverty, but is now a junior at the University of Texas at Austin on her way to law school. The key, Robberson argues, was Turner 12, a program founded by a Lincoln High School coach who picks 12 students every five years for hands-on mentoring from eighth grade to graduation. In other words, it’s all about taking a one-on-one approach, fostering personal responsibility, and involving parents and family in the child’s future.
Rockwall Shocked By Recent Teen Suicides: An eighth grader and a freshman, both females, have killed themselves in recent weeks in Rockwall, prompting community-wide soul searching and questions about why the athletic and seemingly happy girls took their own lives.
Profar May Be Real Deal: Even if you only casually follow the Rangers you have likely heard of the team’s much ballyhooed top prospect Jurickson Profar. Profar played in a few games last season, but with the recent injury to Ian Kinsler, he’s getting some real playing time this spring. And his play during this stretch, including his game-winning home run yesterday, seems to suggest the rookie may live up to the hype.
Some people decide which Rangers games to attend by looking at the opponents. I’m more interested in what kind of free or discounted stuff I can get. Promotions schedules are almost exclusively detailed in chronological order, but this subject-based breakdown should be more useful.
If you’re not worried about your waistline, scarf down dollar hot dogs at just about any Wednesday game: April 10, May 1, May 22, May 29, June 12, June 19, July 3, July 31, Aug. 14, Aug. 21, Sept. 11, or Sept. 25. The only exception is July 24, when the Yankees are in town, because Yankees fans must pay full price for their hot dogs.
If you need something to shield your bald spot from the sun, you can get a blue cap (June 16), a fedora (July 2), a camouflage cap (Aug. 20), a red batting helmet (April 7, only if you’re 13 or younger), or — get this — a wrestling mask (Aug. 17, 13 and younger).
If you’re OCD, you’ll probably want a magnetic schedule (April 5), a calendar (April 6), a yearbook (May 5), and an Adrian Beltre growth chart (June 2, 13 and younger).
If you like to get your drink on, you can pick up a set of cups and a pitcher (June 18) or a beer stein (Aug. 13).
If you sell bobbleheads on eBay, you can accumulate new stock that looks like Nolan Ryan (May 21) or Yu Darvish (June 11).
If you need a new T-shirt, you can get one featuring Yu Darvish (April 9), Adrian Beltre (April 21, 13 or younger), or Joe Nathan (May 19, 13 or younger).
And if you need something in which to carry all this loot, you have your choice of a drawstring backpack (July 23), a reusable bag (July 30), a gym bag (Aug. 18, 13 and younger), or a pillowcase (July 21, 13 and younger).
Dallas Police Chief Fires Officers Who Allegedly Planted Drugs During Investigation: Chief David Brown had a busy Friday, firing two officers who are now charged with fabricated and/or tampering with physical evidence and aggravated perjury related to a 2011 drug investigation. The chief also suspended or fired additional officers for drinking and driving, getting into fights with off duty officers, the misuse of city equipment, whipping their children with computer power cords, and, lest we forget, waving around guns in rap videos.
Are Nolan Ryan’s Days With the Rangers Numbered? Late Friday Texas Rangers General Manager Jon Daniels became the team’s president of baseball operations, and Rick George, the Rangers’ COO, became president of business operations. That quiet administrative switcheroo had more than a few commentators wondering if Nolan Ryan will soon leave the team.
Dignitaries On Hand to Lay Van Cliburn to Rest: George W. Bush and Rick Perry were among those who eulogized the late musical legend, and Russian president Vladimir Putin sent a statement that was read during the memorial service at Broadway Baptist Church in Fort Worth.
From ESPN’s annual ranking of the top 100 prospects in baseball, released today:
Profar is the best prospect in the minors this year thanks to an incredible combination of tools, skills, and baseball instincts rarely found in players who play in the middle of the field. His feel for the game is unusual for a player of any age, much less a teenager, and should put another nail in the coffin of the old saw that American-born players have better instincts.
He has an outstanding approach at the plate that allowed him to make the two-level jump from low Class A to Double-A without losing much production, and he showed more power this year than I expected; his frame isn’t big but he stays upright through contact better now and he does get plenty of hip rotation to drive the ball. At short he has superlative actions with a plus-plus arm and plenty of range in both directions, so there’s never been a question about his position.
A good defensive shortstop who posts OBPs around .400 and hits 15-20 homers a year is a player around whom you can build your roster, and who should help keep the Rangers in contention for the next decade.
The Rangers had three other prospects in the top 100: third baseman Mike Olt (71), pitcher Cody Buckel (90), and pitcher Martin Perez (93).
No one was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame today, but six former Texas Rangers received votes. It’s almost impossible that any of them will ever get in.
Players need to be on 75 percent of voters’ ballots to be enshrined; former Houston Astro Craig Biggio was the closest this year, with 68.2 percent. The Baseball Writer’s Association of America (BBWAA, taking a page from Grapevine’s book) had to deal with three (alleged) steroid-users facing the ballot for the first time this season: Roger Clemens, Barry Bonds, and Sammy Sosa. None received more than 38 percent of the vote. The former Rangers, their vote percentage, and why they won’t ever get in:
Golf Courses Are the Ultimate Cure-All For Urban Poverty: Here’s another article (paywall) that talks about how Mayor Mike Rawlings is really jazzed about how great that golf course is going to be for South Dallas. But you don’t need to click through. You already know how huge this deal is going to be. Just think about what a major boom Dallas National has been for Cockrell Hill. I mean, can you think of a more affluent and booming neighborhood in North Texas than the island city of Cockrell Hill? It’s like a second Highland Park, which also has a golf course in it. Coincidence? I think not.
Man Tries to Steal $269 Worth of Meat: In order to really appreciate this story about Rodney Johnson’s attempt to make off from a Kroger with $269 worth of meat shoved up under his coat, you have to try and picture just what $269 worth of meat looks like. Then read how he was first tackled by police and then struck in the back of the head before officers finally managed to arrest the hungry thief.
Michael Young Is No Longer a Texas Ranger: Drop your head to your chest, raise your right arm, extend your fingers, and drop a final claw on Michael Young as he heads out the door to Philadelphia. “If there was crying in baseball, I guess I’d cry,” Wash said. But we all know Wash cried.
Cowboys Win Game, Josh Brent Just Loses: What do you say about Josh Brent? Over the weekend he lost his best friend, he lost his career, and he quite possibly lost his freedom for up to the next 20 years (the maximum sentence for intoxication manslaughter). He was released from jail after posting bail that was $10,000 more than his $490,000 2012 salary. “It’s not a good moment for anyone right now,” Brent’s attorney said. I guess that’s all you really can say.
Today is the last day of Major League Baseball’s regular season. The Texas Rangers, your defending back-to-back American League champions, have not managed to win their division yet. Despite having eight All-Stars on their roster, the Rangers enter Game 162 in a tie with the Oakland A’s, a team comprised of journeymen, rookies, and castoffs.
The Rangers could have secured the division title with a win on Monday night, but they lost to the A’s, 4-3. The same was true last night, but Texas’ suddenly impotent lineup managed to produce one measly run in a 3-1 loss.
Both of those games ended around midnight Dallas time. Today’s game in Oakland starts at 2:35. So, local bosses, forgive your baseball-loving employees if they seem both sleep-deprived and distracted today.
DISD Superintendent to Overhaul UIL Athletic Committees: Coaches who currently sit on University Interscholastic League committees will be replaced with school principals and assistants. Those changes come as superintendent Mike Miles takes action after a WFAA report that revealed a lack of disciplinary action against coaches who violated UIL rules by recruiting players into the district.
Supreme Court To Tackle Texas Cases in New Term: The high court begins its new term today, and the cases it will hear include a fight over the University of Texas’ affirmative action policy and a case from Texas that may impact voter ID laws.
Earthquake Rattles Irving: Odd. I was actually in Irving Saturday night at 11:30 p.m. and I didn’t feel the 3.4 magnitude earthquake, followed a few minutes later by an after shock, that had its epicenter in the Dallas suburb.
Rangers Clinch Playoff Spot: Sure, it was kind of expected the Rangers would be playing ball deep into October, but at the very least, the team’s win in the second game of Sunday’s doubleheader against the Angels secured one of two wild card spots.
There could be a whole lot of Texas Rangers on the field for the American League at the Major League Baseball All-Star Game on July 10 in Kansas City (yes, Kansas City still has a Major League team).
If the voting were to end today, there would be 5 Rangers in the starting lineup. Outfielder Josh Hamilton is leading all players with more than 3.8 million votes so far. (His starting spot already is fairly secure.) From MLB.com:
Hamilton’s teammate Nelson Cruz holds the third starting spot in the outfield, and he has a race on his hands: he’s edging out No. 4 Jose Bautista of the Blue Jays by fewer than 42,000 votes, and he’s fewer than 35,000 votes behind the No. 2 outfielder, Curtis Granderson of the Yankees. The Orioles’ Adam Jones is in fifth place and in the mix as well, trailing Bautista by fewer than 40,000 votes.
Adrian Beltre has a cushion of more than 300,000 votes over the Tigers’ Miguel Cabrera at third base, an increase in his lead from the first update. That makes three if-they-played-the-game-today starters for the Rangers.
The other two: Second baseman Ian Kinsler, who has a lead of more than 282,000 on the Yankees’ Robinson Cano, and catcher Mike Napoli. Napoli has a wide lead over the next two catchers, who are much closer together. Napoli has more than 1.6 million votes, while the Twins’ Joe Mauer and Orioles’ Matt Wieters each have a little more than 900,000.
Word is making the rounds in Austin that Bernie co-star Matthew McConaughey and his fiancÃ© Brazilian model Camila Alves have literally set up camp with 42 air-conditioned tents in their backyard for guests to spend the weekend. The occasion? They are getting married today.
For their honeymoon, the alleged newlyweds will be at the Rangers Ballpark at Arlington Friday with Nelson Cruz to promote the Texas Rangers Foundation’s Just Keep Livin program.
It’s at 1:05 p.m. May 17 (Thursday) against the Oakland Athletics. Yes, that means it’s a day game.
We will select TWO winners. Three tickets and a parking pass to each.
To win, provide the correct answer to the trivia question via the form below. The winners will be selected at random from among all the correct answers received, and they must be able to pick up the tickets at the D Magazine offices in downtown Dallas. We’re open 8:30 a.m.-5:30 p.m. weekdays.
We’ll accept entries until Â 4 p.m. on Tuesday, May 15, and winners will be notified shortly after. Limit of one entry per person.
UPDATE: The contest is closed. The winners have been notified via email. Â There were two different correct answers to the trivia question (since there are two accepted calculations of WAR): Joaquin Benoit and Kevin Millwood. Â Either was accepted.
Speaking of Mismanaged Pension Funds, Teachers Squander Millions on Bad Investments: The Dallas Police and Fireman’s Pension System is not the only public pension program getting bad press for risky investments. In this two part investigation by the Dallas Morning News’ Steve McGonigle, the Teacher Retirement System of Texas is shown to have blown $100 million gambling on a casino company. Part one looks at the pension fund’s risky investing, which the DMN reports to involve losses of upwards of $1 billion. Part two raises suspicions about the relationship between the casino company and Governor Rick Perry, who was the beneficiary of campaign donations from the casino owners. It’s worth a read (if you know how to skirt the pay wall).
Run Katy Trail At Your Own Risk: Three separate incidents of armed robbery along Katy Trail were reported over the weekend, all occurring between 11:30 p.m. Saturday and 6:30 a.m. Sunday. Wallets, credit cards, and iPhones were stolen. The victims describe the similar incidents here.
Winning Lottery Ticket Still Hasn’t Surfaced: If you purchased a Lottery ticket from the Crossroad Shell on Western Center Boulevard in Fort Worth, you may want to dig it out and double check the numbers. The Texas Lottery Commission believes a $28 million ticket was sold at the store.
Josh Hamilton Breaks Historic Bat in Angels Rout: Hamilton got his 44th RBI and his average rose to .402 with a broken bat single he hit in the seventh inning of last night’s game. It was the last swing for a bat that Hamilton used to smack four home runs in a single game a week ago Tuesday in Baltimore. All together, Hamilton hit eight home runs with the bat, which is now off to Cooperstown for enshrining.
The game is at 1:05 p.m. Thursday against the Seattle Mariners. We will select TWO winners. Three tickets and a parking pass to each.
To win, provide the correct answer to the trivia question via the form below. The winners will be selected at random from among all the correct answers received, and they must be able to pick up the tickets at the D Magazine offices in downtown Dallas. We’re open until 5:30 p.m. today, and in the morning at 8:30 a.m.
Since this is short notice, we’ll accept entries until 4:30 today. Now, go:
UPDATE: Wow. Who knew so many people were available to attend a Thursday afternoon game? The giveaway has been given away. The winners have been notified via email.
Trinity Parkway: Still Crazy After All These Years: The Federal Highway Administration has released a report commissioned in 2009 that analyzes various alignments of the Trinity Parkway, and you can see all four volumes of the report in this blog post, which circumvents the pay-walled DMN story here and this rundown of the details. The takeaway: the report favors the city’s favorite alignment, to stick the parkway in between the river and the east levee. Still unknown, however, is how to pay for the $1.76 billion road; whether or not the Corps of Engineers will actually allow a road to be built in a floodway; or, most importantly, whether the traffic relief or development-spurring potential of the parkway is worth the astronomical cost or squandering the full potential of transforming Dallas’ largest natural asset in a usable public space. There will be a public hearing on May 6, but you know what you will hear then: The citizens of Dallas voted for a park. We now have a bridge and a plan for a road. Same as it ever was.
UTD Researchers Build Robotic Jellyfish: You know what is cooler than building a parkway in your park space? Building a robotic jellyfish (paywall). That’s what researchers at UT Dallas and Virginia Tech have done, and the hope is that the hydrogen-powered RoboJelly, as they are calling it, will be able to generate its own energy while being deployed to perform underwater surveillance. Here’s a video of the robo-beast in action.
Excited About The Return of Rangers Baseball? Yu Betcha! The Rangers took the season’s opening series last night. Tonight’s the night Yu Darvish throws his first major league pitch. Napoli will catch. The Rangers are expecting a near-sellout, with just 6,000 tickets left for tonight’s game.