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Friday, April 18, 2014         

FURTHER REVIEW


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Pink for cancer awareness is better in small doses

By Dave Reardon

POSTED:



OK, those of you thinking it but afraid to say it, come on.

Repeat after me: Pink stinks.

Too much of it does, that is.

Many watching the University of Hawaii baseball team lose two of three games to Valparaiso over the weekend were less than tickled pink. Me too ... I had to double-check my TV to make sure something wasn’t wrong with the color.

I’m not saying that’s why the Rainbows lost. Valpo was hot coming into the series.

But enough is enough and too much is simply too much. Shoelaces, cool. A ribbon, cool. Hot pink shirt and socks? Not cool.

You don’t have to be pro-pink to be pro-cancer awareness. It’s not that just about every person I talked with about local sports in the past two days and I are insensitive. We’ve all lost close friends and family members to cancer.

Rainbows fan Tom Haynes has lost several, and is all for cancer awareness. But his eyes hurt. And he questions a major UH sponsor’s role in this, too.

“It very much appears that Under Armour used this great cause primarily for its own brand awareness,” Haynes wrote me in an e-mail. “Pardon me while I gag.”

I’m certain UA donates profits made on pink sales to cancer research, but that’s not the point. Marketing based on illness should be less garish.

Crissy Terawaki Kawamoto works in cancer research and is a huge sports fan.

“Pink as a breast cancer ‘awareness’ vessel is overdone,” she wrote me in an e-mail. “Seeing baseball players in pink isn’t going to remind a woman to book a mammogram appointment, especially at night or during a weekend day game, when the doctor’s office is closed. If you want to make a difference as an organization, you’re better off making a donation or doing health education/PSAs than spending money on pink shirts.”

» Part of me wishes I could say, “Mouse Davis needs to remain at UH this season because the receivers he coaches aren’t ready for the upcoming season and they need more of his expertise.”

But I can’t, because it isn’t true. The receivers looked great in spring practice, despite the turnover among the starters. Mouse coached ’em up good.

Davis is one of the most credible and comedic people in our sports community. I hope he decides to stay, but best wishes to him if he returns to the mainland to be closer to his family.

» Yes, Pal Eldredge does look like Babe Ruth ... a lot. And his partner on Oceanic’s OIA baseball championship telecast, Kanoa Leahey, strikes a resemblance to a Yankee of current vintage, Jorge Posada.

» The perfect pedigree for a major league manager is quite different than that for a major league star.

And that’s why all those years as a player in the minors — as well as four seasons in the majors with four teams — is good for Chris Truby’s resume.

The Damien product, now 37, is in his third season as a manager in the Phillies system. Don’t be surprised if he moves up the ladder quickly.

» A followup to yesterday’s column about Major League Baseball records: I used to believe the 162-game regular-season schedule was sacred ... simply because that’s what it was when I became a fan. Older folks see the beauty in 154 games and no playoffs.

Now that the facade of records having inter-generational meaning has been torn down by the steroids scandal and other issues, it is past time for the pastime to look at contracting the regular-season schedule.

Cold-weather baseball isn’t anybody’s idea of fun, especially with championships on the line.

A shorter regular season, say 120 games, would also mean better quality of play from beginning to end. Fewer wear-and-tear injuries would mean longer careers, especially for star pitchers.

The stumbling block, of course, is money. As long as advertisers are willing to pay the freight, the owners and the commissioner won’t want to shorten up the season. But if attendance continues to decline ...

Reach Star-Advertiser sports columnist Dave Reardon at dreardon@staradvertiser.com, his “Quick Reads” blog at staradvertiser.com and twitter.com/davereardon.






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