Is A-Rod just a lucky star?

The Baltimore Sun

News item: The New York Daily News reported recently that Alex Rodriguez and wife Cynthia are splitting just months after the birth of their second daughter.

My take: A-Rod, 32, has been seen around New York with Madonna, 49, and the gossip rags are buzzing because both reportedly are having marital problems. If they really are an item, Alex could soon be living in a material world with a middle-aged material girl.

News item: Joey Chestnut needed to chew into overtime to defeat Takeru Kobayashi in the annual hot dog-eating contest Friday at Nathan's on Coney Island.

My take: Each ate a total of 64 franks, which is pretty impressive. Because I believe strongly in moderation, I generally stop at 50.

News item: Michael Phelps has dominated the U.S. Olympic swimming trials and remains on course to go for eight gold medals in Beijing.

My take: Times sure have changed. If this were the 1930s, Phelps would be on his fifth Tarzan movie by now.

News item: The Milwaukee Brewers are rumored to have the inside track to acquire Cleveland Indians ace C.C. Sabathia.

My take: If that's true, that three-team race in the National League Central could get a lot more interesting in the next couple of weeks.

Related news item: Hank Steinbrenner told The Star-Ledger of Newark, N.J., on Friday that the New York Yankees are not interested in making a trade for Sabathia.

My take: This, along with the decision to chase off Joe Torre, is just more evidence that Tampa, Fla., resident George Steinbrenner has switched his allegiance to the first-place Rays.

News item: Lawyers for embattled personal trainer Brian McNamee insist in a court filing that DNA testing will prove steroid paraphernalia turned over to investigators was used by Roger Clemens.

My take: Don't know about you, but it has reached the point where I don't even have a rooting interest in this scummy soap opera.

News item: The Tour de France began yesterday with a 123-mile first leg through Brittany and many of the world's top cyclists ineligible to compete because of various doping controversies.

My take: Congratulations to early leader Alejandro Valverde, for what that's worth. I don't even get interested anymore until the second round of appeals.

News item: Arizona Diamondbacks catcher Chris Snyder has been placed on the 15-day disabled list with a fractured left testicle.

My take: I'm sure there's a joke in there somewhere, but I'm too busy curling up in the fetal position to think of it.

News item: Barry Bonds' asterisk-stained 756th home run ball will be enshrined at the Hall of Fame after all. The ball was delivered to Cooperstown - with no strings attached - Tuesday.

My take: Well, there actually is one string attached. Bonds has said he will boycott the Hall if the ball is displayed with the asterisk. I'm still trying to figure out if that's a promise or a threat.

News item: Retired Green Bay Packers quarterback Brett Favre might or might not be seriously considering a comeback, depending on which news outlet you choose to believe.

My take: This reminds me of that old saying, "Where there's smoke, it's probably coming out of Aaron Rodgers' ears."

News item: The Oakland Athletics signed 16-year-old Dominican pitching prospect Michael Inoa to a minor league contract that includes a $4.25 million signing bonus.

My take: A's general manager Billy Beane was particularly impressed when Inoa asked that the entire signing bonus be rolled into a giant moneyball.

News item: The baseball players union has filed a grievance against the Houston Astros, claiming that pitcher Shawn Chacon was unlawfully terminated after choking GM Ed Wade.

My take: Apparently, the union feels that since Wade was once the GM of the Philadelphia Phillies, he should be used to choking by now.

Listen to Peter Schmuck on WBAL (1090 AM) at noon most Saturdays and Sundays.

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