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Starting Nine: The Giants put a ring on it

Many things are happening -- on Cut4, in baseball and out there in the rest of the world. Here are nine you need to know about today:

1. Heavy is the finger that wears the diamond-encrusted championship ring
The Giants received their World Series title-commemorating bling (modeled above by Pablo Sandoval) before their game against the Cardinals yesterday, and wore special gold-tinged caps and jerseys to mark the day as well. Forgotten in the all the hubbub was their ability to play baseball well, as they lost 14-3.

2. His power? More than middling
Red Sox third baseman Will Middlebrooks blasted three homers out of Toronto's Rogers Centre in a 13-0 Boston win. With a chance to equal the MLB single-game record of four, he came up just short in his last at-bat. He provided some interesting analysis of the near-homer, suggesting that the Blue Jays' facilities staff turned off the A/C on him, but that he counteracted its effect by "blowing on it running down the line."

3. Not a good night to be a starting pitcher in Arlington
Yu Darvish left in the fifth inning of the Angels-Rangers game with a blister, and Jered Weaver left in the sixth after tumbling to get out of the way of a comebacker. To our knowledge, no evidence of a dual voodoo doll crafted by a Houston, Oakland or Seattle fan was found at the stadium.

4. This is one baseball card we don't recommend attaching to the spokes of your bike
One of the cards universally considered to be the hobby's "holy grail," the 1909 Honus Wagner T206, sold last week. The previous owner rebuffed my offer of a Topps Danny Tartabull rookie, a Skybox Thunder Richie Sexson AND an entire Magic: The Gathering booster pack, and accepted $2.1 million instead.  

5. A defunct stadium in Indianapolis is being made into an apartment complex
Some old stadiums, like the Polo Grounds and Ebbets Field in New York, were torn down to make way for housing projects. An Indianapolis developer is executing something a lot more creative with Bush Stadium, repurposing the existing structure itself into an apartment building, with the former playing field as a park for residents.

6. Joe Maddon is a T. Rex superfan
MLB's hipster manager's new musical obsession is T. Rex's 1971 hit "Bang a Gong (Get it On)." He's instituted it as the team's introductory song, and Tropicana Field is now home to the title instrument, complete with dedicated gong operator. 

7. And speaking of T. Rex
Jurassic Park was rereleased in 3D on Friday and you best believe I was there to have 3D brachiosaurus snot shot in my direction. Now for some annoying science-y buzzkill! Velociraptors were actually two feet tall, Tyrannosauruses might have been covered in feathers and despite this iconic audio/visual moment, some paleontologists have theorized that dinosaurs made no noise at all.

8. Louisville could win two NCAA basketball titles
Louisville's women's basketball team, which pulled off the upset of the year when it downed Brittney Griner and the mighty Baylor Bears, defeated Cal to set up a title match with UConn on Tuesday. Meanwhile, the men's team will take on Michigan for the title on Monday as the Cardinals look to join UConn in 2004 as the only Division I schools to win men's and women's basketball championships in the same year.

9. Mad Men's sixth season premiered last night
In case you weren't already sold on the mysterious charms of Don Draper, it turns out Jon Hamm is a lifelong Cards fan. Did you ever doubt he was the perfect man? (We never did, Jon. Not even for a second.)

-- Cut4 staff

(Image via Yahoo Sports)