The Weekly Rapport #24: Yanks, Golf, and Half Marathons

Hi All,

Here is your weekly guide of things I’m reading, doing, and experimenting with. Enjoy.

Book I’m Reading

Inside the Empire: The True Power Behind the New York Yankees – Bob Klapisch & Paul Solotaroff

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I love a good piece of sports journalism. Inside the Empire: The True Power Behind the New York Yankees by journalists Bob Klapisch and Paul Solotaroff is a quick light read on the New York Yankees organization. It is a little weird since it’s all about the 2018 season, so it reads more like a lengthy ESPN article, but it gives great insight into the thoughts and lives of Brian Cashman, Randy Levine, and Hal Steinbrenner, as well as the players – things that I didn’t know about at all. If you’re a baseball fan, you sometimes forget how much of a business the MLB is. There is so much more involved than just keeping the good players and getting rid of the bad ones. The book does a good job talking about the business, the personalities, and the actual performance of the 2018 New York Yankees.

Accomplishment Checked Off

Popular Brooklyn Half Marathon

Brooklyn Half

I ran my first half marathon this weekend (13.1 miles) and it SUCKED. Granted, I didn’t train nearly as much as I should have. With the amount of shitty weather the last two months, I made excuses to stay inside rather than layer up and go out on the long runs that I should have. I only did one long training run, and it was just 8 miles. And in case I haven’t made it clear, I absolutely hate distance running. I only sign up for these races to force myself to stay in shape and to check it off my bucket list.

So basically anything above 8 miles was going to be unchartered territory for me yesterday. The fact that I finished under two hours (1:57) was a solid accomplishment, and really my only goal going into it. I actually felt fine most of the race, but shocker, the 9-mile mark kicked me in the ass. I never ran more than 8 miles in my life so that makes a lot of sense. By mile 12 I thought my knees were going to collapse, I was basically shuffling like a grandpa for the last half mile, but somehow was able to maintain a 9 minute pace.

I’ve done four triathlons. Each time I’ve been able to finish strong – sprinting the last 50 yards and crossing the line with my arms raised triumphantly. But yesterday, after running 13 miles, I dragged ass across the finish line and was just relieved I didn’t have to run another step.

Yeah, I posted happy pictures with my medal like we all do – but I gotta be honest, I was miserable. I don’t like running, and don’t think I ever will. I gained a lot more respect for anyone who does this type of stuff all the time. Like I said, if I had trained more liked I should have, I probably would have felt fine. But knowing I have to run two of those in November is going to haunt me for the next five months.

The New King of Golf

Brooks Koepka

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Twenty-nine year old Brooks Koepka won his fourth major championship yesterday, dominating the difficult Bethpage Black course in Farmingdale, NY. Watching him is pretty mesmerizing. He crushes the ball, putts with utter confidence, and keeps a deadpan super-calm demeanor the entire time. He doesn’t have the glare of Tiger Woods, or the charm of Phil Mickelson. He isn’t hip like Rickie Fowler, nor is he golf’s darling a la Jordan Spieth. He just wins, and he truly doesn’t care weather you like him or not. Although Tiger Woods’ former caddie, Stevie Williams saw something special in him early on:

“Once in a great while, a player comes along who hits a golf ball the way it was meant to be hit. Powerful, piercing, the perfect trajectory. Of the young players out there, one I’ve seen has that special ball flight: Brooks Koepka. … Obviously he’s searching to find the other parts of the puzzle, but I haven’t seen a ball flight like that since Tiger, and before that, Johnny Miller.”

Stevie Williams in a 2015 interview with Golf Digest

[h/t Kendall Baker w/ Axios Sports]

And honestly, I can’t really tell if I like him. I’m kind of undecided. I root for him and think he’s amazing, don’t get me wrong. But his personality definitely leaves a bit to be desired. He’s sort of like a Kawhi Leonard or a Mike Trout. He has the potential to be the face of the sport, but he literally could not care less about it. It almost seems like this is just his day job and he just does it to pay the bills.

One thing I do love is how dumb he makes reporter’s questions sound with his simple, deliberate responses:

Reporter: “Brooks, how do you remain so calm out there?”

Something Koepka would say: “…. Idk, I’m just playing golf. Why wouldn’t I be calm?”

He shrugs at just about every question he fields and answers dumb questions with well-deserved dumb answers, he thinks golf is boring, he says winning majors is easier than the other tournaments – all of which I agree with, which makes me like him again.

Great Reads Across the Internet

  • How a Cheap, Brutally Efficient Grocery Chain is Upending America’s Supermarkets: “New customers may be jolted at first by the experience of shopping at an Aldi, which expects its customers to endure a number of minor inconveniences not typical at other American grocery stores. Shoppers need a quarter to rent a shopping cart. Plastic and paper bags are available only for a fee. And at checkout, cashiers hurry shoppers away, expecting them to bag their own groceries in a separate location away from the cash register.” [CNN]
  • The Seven Most Underrated Units in the NFL: Don’t sleep on that Jets receiving corps [The Ringer]
  • The Best Time to Book Summer Travel: According to the highly-heralded Points Guy, the best time to book a summer flight is about 21-28 day out. But who the hell actually has the patience to wait that long? I want to book my preferred flight times before it gets booked up. Yeah, I bet I can get a cheap flight 3 weeks out because it’s the 2:45am flight on a Tuesday. [The Points Guy]

The Best Video I Watched All Week

My favorite band The Black Keys just released a new song called ‘Go’ and the music video is pretty entertaining.

-KB

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