Bryce Harper bolts D.C. for the Phillies in March — and the Nationals reach their first-ever World Series 7½ months later.

Ken Griffey Jr. and Alex Rodriguez punch their tickets out of Seattle in 2000 — and the Mariners win an MLB-record 116 games in 2001.

We therefore urge the Angels to embrace the trend, trade Mike Trout (Seattle would be nice) and start printing playoff tickets.


• At @SportsPickle: “2039: John Madden passes away peacefully at age 103. ‘Whoooaaa. Classic case of the Madden Curse.’ ”

• At “Scientists pretending to be interested in kicker offering up brain for research.”

Dropping his time

Kenyan marathoner Eliud Kipchoge broke the 2-hour barrier with a lot of extra help — including an ultrafriendly course layout and a passel of pacesetters rotated in and out around him.

So what’s next — breaking Usain Bolt’s record by dropping somebody off a 100-meter cliff?

No shocker here

Padres pitcher Jacob Nix not only got caught while allegedly trying to break into a home in Mesa, Ariz., through the doggie door, the homeowner tased him for his troubles.

On the bright side, though, scouts say Nix’s stuff has never looked more electric.

Paging Tab Hunter

The best free-agent signing in Washington Senators/Nationals history was:

a) Walter Johnson

b) Joe Cronin

c) Max Scherzer

d) Joe Hardy


Some 310 birds crashed into the windows of the NASCAR Hall of Fame building in Charlotte, N.C.

Even more stunning, the birds were chimney swifts, not racing pigeons.

Wave goodbye to 10 grand

The NFL fined Packers RB Aaron Jones $10,527 for “taunting/unsportsmanlike conduct” for waving at a Cowboys defender on his way to the end zone with the third of his four touchdowns.

Cheesehead spinmeisters say Jones mistook it for a bye week.

Baking turnovers

QB Baker Mayfield has coughed up 11 interceptions and a lost fumble in the Browns’ first six games.

Probably not the Baker’s dozen his coaches had in mind.

Crowded backfield

Los Angeles’ Pierce College placed football coach Carlos Woods on administrative leave after players complained he forced 30 players to share a three-bedroom apartment, according to The Roundup News campus paper.

In related story, Pierce plans to change its nickname from the Brahmas to the Packers.

Getting his Phil

Chargers QB Philip Rivers apologized for grabbing Steelers CB Mike Hilton and giving him an earful after throwing a last-minute interception that sealed a 24-17 loss.

Rivers might have been sorry, but certainly the spirit of Woody Hayes was smiling.

Yellow fever

Officials called penalties on six straight plays in the Cowboys’ final drive in their 24-22 loss to the Jets on Sunday.

Forget free tacos — did everyone in attendance get comp tickets for Six Flags?

Talking the talk

• Bob Molinaro in the Norfolk Virginian-Pilot, on fans rubbing the Nats’ World Series trip in the departed Bryce Harper’s face: “When it comes to social-media traffic, the high road is an HOV lane. The low road is bumper-to-bumper.”

• Michael Grey, via Twitter, on the offensively inept Broncos: “John Elway is a great example of why you should never trust a great pilot to build your plane.”

• Mike Hart of the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel, on Babe Pirrilli throwing four TD passes in a Packers win over the Eagles in 1958: “A lot of guys scrambled to get him on their fantasy teams after that.”

Slippery step for mankind

Ice discovered in craters at the moon’s south pole could be more than a billion years old, Brown University scientists say.

Canada’s first lunar mission, we assume, will include a Zamboni.