Fred Merkle lives!

More than a century after the New York Giants rookie staged “Merkle’s Boner” in 1908, Santiago Nessy replicated it last week for the Lansing (Mich.) Lugnuts in a Midwest League game.

Nessy, running from first with the bases loaded and two outs in the bottom of the ninth in a 4-4 game, peeled off to join the celebration when Chris Hawkins hit an apparent walkoff single up the middle. Just one problem: He failed to reach second base.

The opposing Great Lakes Loons alertly retrieved the ball, touched second — the force-out negating the winning run — and won the game in the 10th.

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• At, after quadragenarian Ken Duke finally scored his first PGA Tour victory: “The 44-year-old virgin.”

• At, on the Celtics’ coaching switch: “The doctor is out. The butler is in.”

Just do it

Scientists in Oregon have recreated human embryos to make stem cells.

But now comes the hard part: measuring each cell for 128 different uniform combinations.

Big man on campus

Michael Wyche, a 6-foot-4, 330-pound JC defensive tackle, has given a verbal commitment to:

a) USC

b) Monsters University

Food for thought

Hostess Twinkies — out of production for 1½ years — are slated to return to store shelves this Friday.

And Ding-Dongs are making a comeback, too: The Rangers just signed Manny Ramirez.

Ultimate test

Nebraska announced it is developing a surefire sideline test to determine if a football player has a concussion.

Apparently you just say the words “Tom Osborne” and wait to see if the player genuflects or not.

Now cut that out

Waukegan, Ill., has a junior high named after comedian Jack Benny.

Its mascot, fittingly enough, is the 39’ers.

Tailor-made luck

The Blue Jays’ Jose Bautista had to borrow teammate R.A. Dickey’s pants — and immediately went 8 for 13 on a four-game tear.

“Dickey’s pants until further notice,” Bautista told the Toronto Star.

On thin ice

Canadian curler Matt Dumontelle has been suspended for two years after testing positive for an anabolic steroid.

Suspicions were aroused when he started chucking his stones overhand.

Talko time

• ABC’s Jimmy Kimmel, after Phoenix recorded its fourth-hottest day in history with a high of 119 and a low of 91: “119 to 91? That’s not a temperature range, it’s a basketball score.”

• Steve Schrader of the Detroit Free Press, on why 77-year-old golfer Gary Player is posing nude for ESPN the Magazine’s Body Issue: “He misses the Skins Game.”

• Comedy writer Alan Ray, on WWE stars Natalya and Tyson Kidd getting hitched: “They’re a grudge match made in heaven.”

• Greg Cote of The Miami Herald, on David Beckham’s retirement: “What a big, big loss for the sport of underwear modeling.”

High-caliber race

Gun-rights advocates in Utah are planning a 5K run.

Finding a starter’s pistol shouldn’t be a problem.

Dwight Perry: 206-464-8250 or