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Davis, California

Wednesday, November 29, 2023

Column: Used socks for sale

The world of sports is an odd place.

Curt Schilling’s bloody sock from 2004 just sold for $92,613.

My disgust here has nothing to do with the fact that I’m a Yankees fan and the 2004 American League Championship series was my least favorite series ever. Or the bloody fact that it’s a bloody bloody sock.

There was a live auction this week that saw the sock soaked with Schilling’s eight-year-old blood sell for almost the price of 100,000 McChickens, or 50,000 Pop Tarts when they’re on sale at Safeway. Think of how many people that could have fed (the answer would be one college student).

I just can’t believe someone would actually want this so-called “artifact.” Is this really going to become the symbol of the season that broke an 86-year World Series drought?

First off, let it be known that, according to Yahoo Sports, this isn’t even the bloody sock. Schilling had two bloody socks (I could call them BS, which can either be short for bloody sock or something else), one that he wore against the New York Yankees late in the 2004 ALCS.

Given the situation that each of the bloody socks was worn in, I think the first one that he wore against the Yankees was at a more pivotal point in Red Sox history. Unfortunately for Schilling, the sock apparently had been thrown away at Yankees Stadium before he realized he could discharge bodily fluids onto a sock and sell it.

The fact that Schilling burned all his baseball earnings on his failed video game company might show why he could be so desperate to sell the sock. He can no longer afford to do laundry, so everything he wears he’s just going to auction off to buyers. Now that I realize this, it does make me pity Red Sox fans. Maybe a little.

I’m not saying these things because I’m still bitter about that 2004 ALCS series. Okay, maybe I’m still a bit hurt. But I still can’t believe it — $92,613.

Anyway, in other news, UC Davis men’s basketball has given its fans quite a thrill this season.

The Aggies are currently 7-7 in conference this year, an improvement already from their 3-13 record last year. As crazy as it sounds, UC Davis has a shot at this conference title. If a bloody sock can be sold for $100,000, then this sort of statement is possible.

UC Davis has won three of their last four games. With an added team to conference this year — Hawai’i — there will be two teams that don’t make it into the Big West Championship tournament.

The Aggies have fared well against conference teams, and the 7-7 record, although not impressive, speaks volumes as to how far they have come.

UC Davis played tight with Long Beach State, dropping a close 71-65 decision that saw the 49ers pull away late in the game. This is a team that went on an 18-game losing streak, facing off a perennial March Madness team.

The Aggies will have one more matchup against the 49ers before the end of the season and it will be in front of the home crowd. A win over the first-place, 13-2 LBSU team won’t count any more than a win against 3-11 UC Riverside, but it would definitely do a lot to boost confidence and send a message.

The Aggies’ next two games will be against UC Riverside and Cal State Fullerton, both teams that UC Davis has played before. Both are below UC Davis in the Big West standings, with the Highlanders in last and the Titans in seventh. Depending on how the other games this weekend go, two road wins could vault the Aggies higher in the league standings.

The Aggies have been a second-half team this season, which could be good and bad. They’ve been figuring out how to come out of the locker room with intensity from the first quarter, rather than just the third.

Still, it’s a work in progress. Granted, if the Aggies weren’t the way they are now, we would not have games like the ones against Cal Poly last month and against Northern Colorado.

On Saturday, senior Paolo Mancasola hit a clutch basket from the top of the key to give the Aggies a win with just 1.8 seconds left on the clock. UC Davis squeaked out another win at the buzzer this season.

Keep watch, as the Aggies will definitely provide more entertainment to fans, and Curt Schilling may turn up with another bloody sock that he wants to sell.

Rain is gone, now wind is here. Summer comes in phases I guess. If you’d like to frolic in the fields with MATTHEW YUEN contact him at sports@theaggie.org.


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