Tuesday’s Hot Clicks: Barry Zito Led an Awesome Energy-Efficient National Anthem for Earth Day

Saving the planet, one anthem at a time

The undisputed best way to hear the national anthem at a sporting event is when it’s sung by all the fans. Usually that happens when there’s some kind of mishap with the microphone, but the A’s did it on purpose last night before last night’s game against the Rangers.

Oakland invited former ace Barry Zito out to the ballpark to lead the crowd in an unplugged rendition of the national anthem in honor of Earth Day. All the video boards and LED screens in the park were also turned off during the anthem, to send a message about conserving energy.

The result was eerily beautiful.

In addition to dabbling in music in retirement, Zito is also working with an organization called Energy Upgrade California to encourage people to conserve energy.

“I’m a native Californian, and I think California is just the most beautiful place on the planet,” Zito told Athletics Nation. “Energy Upgrade California is an organization that tries to inspire people to be more efficient with energy. My family, we’ve been doing a lot of the little things—switching out our light bulbs for LED bulbs, turning our phones off at night, washing our laundry on cold, turning off and getting off technology, it all adds up. We’re just trying to keep California golden, keep it golden, baby.”

Giannis isn’t fair

I don’t know if Giannis is going to win the MVP award, but there’s no denying that he’s the most unstoppable player in the NBA right now. He was an absolute terror on both ends of the floor Monday night against the Pistons.

I’m not sure whether the block or the acrobatic layup was the better highlight.

He dropped 41 points, his most ever in a playoff game, and the Bucks completed a sweep of the Pistons for Giannis’s first playoff series win.

Alex Ovechkin had a bad night

The Hurricanes beat the Capitals at home Monday night to force a Game 7 in Washington on Wednesday. If the Caps want to win, they’ll have to hope Alex Ovechkin has his head screwed on a little straighter than he did Monday night.

First, he taunted Carolina’s Dougie Hamilton for avoiding a hit.

Then he went ballistic after his game-tying goal was waved off.

Then, with the game out of reach after two empty-net goals, he picked up a slashing penalty in frustration and mockingly applauded the referee, who also ejected him.

The best of SI

Chris Long’s second Game of Thrones recap is just as good as the first. ... The hidden cost of climate change: its impact on winter sports. ... How hard is it to be a college football ref? Andy Staples found out firsthand.

Around the sports world

A Texas family faces federal charges for an alleged scheme to use stolen identities to get Masters tickets. ... A Twitter troll’s heartless remark to a Thunder reporter led people to rally around a good cause. ... The Suns are now the second Phoenix team this year to fire their head coach after only one season.

It doesn’t get more thrilling than a series-clinching overtime winner

Such a scary injury

Remember, there’s no such thing as a pitching prospect.

Bryce Harper got ejected for arguing a call against somebody else

Jake Arrieta wasn’t happy with Harper’s antics

Don’t trade the pick, please

Magic Johnson quit but people are still getting fined for tweets

At least they can get free two-day shipping if they lose it

I’d take three shots to get out of this thing going backwards


Canine Messi

Arkansas’s mascot had a good birthday

Not sports

A woman trying to dislodge a fish bone in her throat ended up swallowing a metal spoon. ... An Iowa man was convicted of plotting to steal a website domain name at gunpoint. ... Some movie theaters are going to be open 24 hours this weekend because of high demand for Avengers: Endgame.

What an earthquake does to a rooftop pool

How to make your own bonsai tree

One last Avengers trailer

A good song

Email dan.gartland@simail.com with any feedback or follow me on Twitter for approximately one half-decent baseball joke per week. Bookmark this page to see previous editions of Hot Clicks and find the newest edition every day. By popular request I’ve made a Spotify playlist of the music featured here. Visit our Extra Mustard page throughout each day for more offbeat sports stories.


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