Madonna, she still has not showed
I was three years old when Madonna’s “Material Girl” video began airing on MTV in 1984. This was a particularly significant event in my life, because it initiated a lifetime of 100 percent heterosexual inclinations (“Not that there’s anything wrong” with the opposite, of course).
Flash forward 23 years, and if Madonna had followed the natural trend of the female pop icon, she would be washed up, wrung out, wrinkled and hung up to dry by now. She would be the subject of an “E! True Hollywood Story” that details her descent into a prescription-strength robitussin addiction, and her face would resemble an old catcher’s mitt.
But Madonna is none of those things. On my walk to Fenway this afternoon, I passed a ginormous billboard promoting her two upcoming concerts at TD Banknorth Gardens in Boston. Unaware Madonna even had a new album, let alone that she was touring, I did a quick perusal of the Internet and found she ranks fourth in the latest Pollstar power rankings (then again, AC/DC ranks first… so I’m not sure that’s really an indication of anything). A London Times review of Madonna’s Wembley Stadium show mentioned that she pole-danced atop a DJ booth and has the body of a woman half her age.
I don’t know whether to be horrified or impressed with all this new information. But I suppose it is beyond denial that Madonna, at 50, is still a sex symbol (even if it is among the AARP crowd), still relevant enough to have affairs with ballplayers (A-Rod should be available in October) and still a concert draw. Way to go, Madonna Ciccone. I’ll always be a fan of “Material Girl,” as long as the mute button is on.
On a completely unrelated note, let’s all congratulate former MLB.com and Indians.com associate reporter Andrew “The Scribble” Gribble for landing a full-time gig covering Auburn University athletics for the Opelika-Auburn News. Gribble did an excellent job helping out with coverage of the Tribe and several other teams this season, and he’ll be missed. But he has a fine opportunity down south, and I’m sure he’ll make us proud.
With all those accolades out of the way, let’s hear tonight’s lineups, shall we?
INDIANS (79-79): CF Grady Sizemore, 3B Jamey Carroll, LF Ben Francisco, SS Jhonny Peralta, C Kelly Shoppach, DH Travis Hafner, 1B Ryan Garko, RF Franklin Gutierrez, 2B Josh Barfield. LHP Jeremy Sowers (4-8, 5.48).
RED SOX (93-65): CF Jacoby Ellsbury, 3B Jed Lowrie, 2B Dustin Pedroia, 1B Kevin Youkilis, LF Jason Bay, C Jason Varitek, RF Mark Kotsay, DH Jeff Bailey, SS Alex Cora. LHP Jon Lester (15-6, 3.26).
EXCRUCIATING MINUTIA OF THE DAY…
- Jhonny Peralta said he’s been told he will be starting at third base Friday night in Chicago.
- Cliff Lee is dealing with a stiff neck and didn’t throw his bullpen session today. So now he’s questionable for Sunday’s start on multiple fronts — his physical state and the White Sox’s spot in the standings. Bryan Bullington would get the start if Lee doesn’t. The Indians held Bullington around 60 pitches last night, just in case.
- Speaking of Lee, in today’s editions of The Plain Dealer, he is asked in a Q&A what his favorite book is. His response? “I don’t think I’ve read a book in my life, to be honest.” I’m sure the University of Arkansas is very proud.
- Adam Miller made his Fall Instructional League debut yesterday in Goodyear and worked two scoreless innings, allowing no hits and no walks and striking out three in the Indians’ 7-1 win over the Royals. Miller hit 94 mph on the radar gun.
- Remember that giant Coke bottle that used to sit high above the Green Monster? Jensen Lewis does. In Game 7 of the ALCS last year, Lewis gave up a home run to Kevin Youkilis that rocketed off that bottle and further added to the Tribe’s misery. The bottle has since been removed. “Good riddance,” Lewis said. “I put a crack in that thing last year.” When Lewis returned to Vanderbilt to work out in the offseason, his buddies filled his locker with Coke bottles as a cruel reminder.
- Remember Ben Francisco? He’s 10-for-his-last-63 with two RBIs over his last 18 games.