The Other Bryan (Brian) Harris

The other day I went to lunch at Foley’s ,  one of the great sports bars in New York and arguably the best collection of sports memorabilia in any bar in any city. Or at least on the West Side of Manhattan. Anyway, I sit down with my friend Steve and he points to a photo under the glass top of the table (at Foley’s, every table has a display of trading cards, photos, ticket stubs, press passes, etc.) and says, “Hey, look, Brian Harris.” I stare of the photo, one of many that appears to be  a collection of Phillies minor leaguers. Indeed, there’s this photo of an outfielder named Brian Harris, same name as me, except  I spell Bryan this way.   What a surreal moment. What are the chances that you sit down in one of  a million restaurants in New York and your name is on the table? One in a million, I guess. When I get back to the office, I Google the name “Brian Harris” and “baseball player” and  I get a few entries. One is a former player at Vanderbilt, an All-SEC shortstop who interestingly is about my height and weight — and right-handed.   But not the guy from Foley’s. I then find another on LinkedIn. He played in the Phillies organization after graduating from Indiana. It’s hard to tell from his photo, but this must be the guy.  He’s now at IT professional at a company called SkillStorm. Maybe I’ll send him  a LinkedIn invite and freak him out  a little.

*  *   *

I breathed a sigh of relief after hearing about Nelson Liriano’s no-hitter the other night. More than a month into the season and not  a single no-hitter? I was starting to think that after last’s season glut of no-hitters and perfect games, that MLB had told the umps to widen the strike zone or maybe put the balls in a microwave before the game.   Last month, when Anibel Sanchez lost his bid for a second career no-hitter in the ninth inning (which would have been two more than the Mets have thrown as a team — ever), I thought, “What! A Marlins pitcher is never denied  a no-hitter! Something is out of whack.”  But Liriano reaffirmed my faith that it’s never been easier to toss a no-hitter. Sooner or later, even a Mets pitcher will throw one.

*  *   *

April ended with Matt Holliday and Lance Berkman of the Cards each hitting above .400. I know it’s very early, but two players on the same team at .400 after a  month of the season?  That has to be  a very rare occurence.

*  *  *

Frank McCourt should stop whining about how MLB’s takeover of the Dodgers is unfair while the Mets get to operate autonomously. McCourt has made a complete mess of one of the most storied franchises in sports and clearly never ingratiated himself to Bud Selig. Fred Wilpon, on the other hand, is a longtime friend of Selig. They trust one another. That does count for something, in business and in life. You think McCourt would have figured that out by now.

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