A Day That Changed The World

So many things happened on Sunday that its time we stepped back and looked at it all




In case you haven’t watched TV since Saturday or you’ve been living under a rock for the last week or so, you probably don’t know everything that went down on Sunday. If you haven’t, you saw history unfold multiple times in a very short period. But in case you are one of those earlier mentioned people, you’ve missed a lot.

If one goes in chronological order then you’d have to start with the death of the Miami Marlins star pitcher, Jose Fernandez. He was the young ace of the Florida based team and he died early Sunday morning.

The 24 year olds abrupt death comes as the result of a boating accident. He was out early Sunday morning with his fishing buddies when his boat slammed into a jetty.

The Marlins honored him during pregame on Monday, and almost as if it was written in the stars, the Marlins infielder Dee Gordon crushed a leadoff home run in the first inning in the honor of his teammate. It was Gordon’s first home run of the year and ninth of his career.

After the world had a few hours to let the Fernandez death sink in, it was time to say goodbye to another baseball legend. It was the last game for Hall Of Fame announcer Vin Scully at his home field of Dodger Stadium, and it would not soon be forgotten.

The game was pretty slow until the ninth inning; when the Rockies hit a home run against Dodger star closer Kenley Jansen to go ahead 3-2.  The Dodgers needed this win to secure the National League west over their rivals the San Francisco Giants, and it looked liked the Dodgers would have to wait another day.

What seemed like the last at-bat of the game was to fall upon the shoulders of the Dodgers breakout rookie, and possibly the entire NLs rookie of the year award winner Cory Seager. The kid didn’t disappoint. He belted a deep ball to right field that went yard to tie the game and keep the playoff hopes alive and to take the game into extra innings.

The Dodgers would waste no time in extra innings. A seemingly no name rookie named Charlie Culberson would seal the fate for the boys in blue by launching a ball past the left field fence to close the game and send Chavez Ravine into pandemonium.

The walk off home run was the first of the year for Culberson, and the game itself was one last miracle for Vin. After rounding the perimeter fence, the Dodgers and the fans gave a standing ovation to Vin and his 87 year career, as he saluted them back by playing the song “wind beneath my wings”

The home run put punctuation on the announcers’ legendary career. He has broadcasted for 67 years, called 19 no hitters, 6 Dodger World Series victories. He has called more sports than just baseball, but perhaps his most notable call was in Americas past time. Scully was fortunate enough to be the announcer when Hank Aaron hit his legendary record breaking home run number 715 to break the record held by Babe Ruth.

At around the same time, the final round of the PGA Tour Championship was being played. The tournament favorite Dustin Johnson fell apart in the last round leaving the game yet to be decided. All eyes turned to Kevin Chappell who was playing with Johnson and doing well, but it was difficult to count Irish superstar Rory Mclroy and his American counterpart Ryan Moore out.

Going into Hole 16 Mclroy was three back of the Chappell who was in the lead. He would hole out in his second shot to make eagle and then birdie 18 to tie the lead at 12 under par. Just before that, Moore missed his birdie putt on 18 to put him at 13 under, so he had to settle at 12 under. Chappell would par 18 and also finish at -12. The stage was set for a three way playoff.

The first playoff hole was a replay of 18. Both Mclroy and Moore would birdie but Chappell would end up with a par and long way home. The next playoff hole was also a repeat of 18. After two bad tee shots both Mclroy and Moore would par and move on to the third playoff hole number 15.

Moore would hit the ball just short of the green on the precarious par three, and Mclroy would hit well past the flag but remain on the putting surface. Both would collect par and move on to hole 16, and everyone immediately thought of the miraculous eagle that put Mclroy in his current position.

Both players would hit decent drives, but Mclroy would out hit Moore by a little bit. Moore would put his ball on the back fringe and Mclroy would do less than sink it again, but rather hit center green. After Moore hit an awful chip and two putt, the door would be left open for Mclroy: sink the ball in 2 putts or less and he wins.

And sink it he did. The 27 year old nailed his 15 footer to the sound of a thunderous crowd. Now, you might think this was a lot of excitement for a golf tournament, but consider this. The way the FedEx cup works is that if you place high enough in regular tournaments throughout the year, you get points.

The person who ends up with the most points at the end of the year is said to have won the FedEx cup and receives roughly 2 million dollars. The sure favorite to win the FedEx cup was Dustin Johnson, but because of his poor final day score, Mclroy was able to gain the points he needed to edge Johnson.

On top of that, winning the Tour Championship in itself brought a milder payday of about 1.5 million dollars. But the kicker is, if a player manages to win the FedEx cup and the Tour Championship, there is a hefty $10 million bonus payout. That means the putt that Mclroy hit was worth roughly 13 and a half million dollars. Not too bad for 27 years old.

Finally, after the dust had settled on what was so far a crazy day, there was still room for one more event, as tragic as it was. At the old age of 87, perhaps the greatest golfing hero of all time, Arnold Palmer passed away.

The Pennsylvania native was a rare type of person in this world. He was confident, yet sportsman like. He was charismatic, but humble. He was always a perfect gentleman, but always the biggest threat on the course.

While being a superstar golfer, Palmer is most notably famous for making golf a common game. He had an electric personality that drew fans to him, and they affectionately called themselves “Arnies Army”. He was the best player with the biggest personality.

His lifetime achievements are almost innumerable, but they include: 7 time Major Champion including 4 Masters wins. A spot on 6 Ryder cup teams, 20 aces, and he was the first player to ever make over a million dollars in tour winnings.

But perhaps he will be most remembered for what he did off the course. He established The Arnold Palmer hospital for Children in central Florida and the NBC affiliated “Golf Channel”, endorsed countless products, has his name on one of the most popular blended drinks of all time, and was a close friend to many. The king will truly be missed by many.

Its days like this where we have to step back as people, and assess everything we just took in. we saw a rising star taken from us too soon. We saw a farewell to one of the greatest voices in broadcasting history. We saw the start to a potentially historic playoff run for a prolific MLB team. We saw a thrilling finish to what was already a thrilling PGA season, and we said our final goodbye to one of the greatest athletes of all time.

The takeaway from Sunday is that history can be made or changed multiple times in just the course of a few hours. It shows us that we always live life on the edge, and that the only thing predictable about life is its unpredictability. It’s days like September 25th 2016 that show us just how small we really are

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