Thursday, July 31, 2008

He Went Where?

Welcome to the jungle...Well interesting day today, as expected. Manny did not go to the Marlins as most expected, instead he heads to LA to play for the Dodgers. It's strange...Manny said he didn't feel "comfortable" in Boston...yeah, because you'll really feel more "comfortable" in Los Angeles? At least it's not the big apple... Speaking of which, Manny will be playing for former long-time Yankee manager Joe Torre. Makes you wonder what that first conversation will consist of...Intriguing.

Even though no one had talked about him for a little while, as I stated in my last post, I wondered if Jr. Griffey would end up somewhere else. Supposedly Griffey will join Jermaine Dye and Carlos Quentin in the outfield...but not at right...he's going back to center. White Sox GM Ken Williams, when asked about starting Griffey in center said "I know it's hard to believe but trust me, center is the easiest outfield position to play from an injury standpoint." I beg to differ, but then again I'm no GM. You have a lot of lateral movement in center, not to mention how much ground you have to cover. Sorry to say it but that ChiSox outfield might be slower than molasis in January. And what's going to happen to Nick Swisher? I know he's only hitting a dismal .230, but he does have 15 homers and 50 RBI.

Other stuff:

The Mets made no moves. Way to not get a corner outfielder, Omar Minaya. You may be the only person on Earth confident in putting Endy Chavez and Fernando Tatis in the starting lineup. Manny Ramirez would have sounded better.

Minnesota fans began throwing garbage on the field in the Metrodome today after a bad call on a check swing...which lead to Ozzie Guillen requesting his team be taken off the field. Then Ozzie got in a very emphatic argument with a Twin fan above the dugout. Really? No...Ozzie?...Pshh.

In five days the NL Central has gone from tied to a five game cushion for the Cubs over the Brewers. A four-game sweep on the road for the Cubbies?...Impressive. But it probably felt like a home game as supposedly about half the crowd was rooting for Chicago. Hopefully the next series will be a better one...maybe Milwaukee will decide to show up. Oh and Prince Fielder is strong. If you can bust a bat into 3 pieces simply by slamming it onto home plate, you're a man...even if you ARE a vegetarian. Someone tell Prince eating four veggie burgers every lunch doesn't make you a vegetarian. Just kidding Prince. He's a big man....

MLB Teams Finally Making Moves

In one of the slowest trade deadline years in recent memory, some deals are FINALLY starting to happen (Unless you consider the CC Sabathia and Rich Harden moves "trade deadline").Mark Teixeira to the Angels, Pudge to the Yanks, and now the huge rumor swirling around the MLB is that the Florida Marlins...that's right...the Florida Marlins are close to obtaining a certain Manny Ramirez in a 3-way deal that would send Jeremy Hermida to the Pirates and Jason Bay to the Red Sox. That would be one hell of an aquisition for a small market team like the Marlins, who are now looming right around the Phillies shoulders at a game and a half out of first in the NL East. It seems obvious that this would only be a rental for Florida...No way they can keep him with the contract he'll want.

But then again, don't all three of these sound like rentals?

In order for the Angels to keep Teixeira they would need to give him a contract that would seemingly exterminate any chances of keeping Vlad Guerrero or K-Rod. Is Mark really THAT much better that Casey Kotchman? At least Kotchman provided them a future...maybe LA should have gone out and gotten some pitching instead...after all, pitching and defense wins championships.

I like what the Yankees did...Posada on the shelf for the year so they pick up another veteran and former World Series champ to fill the hole behind the dish. But New York needs someone young to fill the catching position...both Posada and Pudge will be 37 by opening day 2009...

And the possibility of a two-headed Ramirez monster in that Marlin lineup might rattle the opposition a little. How is Florida even in the hunt? I looked at their roster during spring training and it looked like a a AAA team plus Dan Uggla and Hanley Ramirez. Hats off to those young guys. 1997, 2003....2008? The Fish might break the pattern and win it all this year instead...okay just kidding...even with Manny in that lineup they still don't have the pitching depth to go anywhere... Sorry Florida fans.

Well, I guess we'll have to keep checking in on the ESPN bottomline tomorrow to see what happens... Maybe a Griffey Jr. move? Will Ohman? And is Bengie Molina going to Florida?...Many possibilities...tomorrow should be fun to watch.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Ocho Cinco. Need I Say More?

Chad Johnson may be the most confusing character in all the NFL. I was watching a short clip on a post-training camp interview with Chad on ESPN yesterday and I must admit, he had me listening. First off, he didn't have his usual "grill" in...must mean business. But seriously, how many times the last two years has he claimed to want out of Cincy but still stuck around? You have to give the guy some credit. Randy Moss complained about being in he left games early and didn't show to some practices...oh then he complained about being in Oakland too, but who blames him there? Chad said that he and Carson were going to have some fights and have some issues with eachother in training camp. But what is their feud even over? I guess Carson hates all the media attention Chad's getti...hghm..demanding. All Chad's attention is only bringing this team down. The Bengals already have a number one receiver in T.J. Who's your mama. Maybe Cincy needs to just trade Chad, seeing as that's what he seems to want every year, get either a great future draft pick or some help on defense. Won't that make everyone happy? Palmer won't have to deal with the media, Houshmandzadeh can be even a bigger threat (although I may second-guess that...double coverage), Marvin Lewis won't have to babysit, and Chad can go be happy with another team. Happy Days, happy days...

Monday, July 28, 2008

On The Hotseat

Iowa head football coach Kirk Ferentz has been in a heap of trouble lately. 14 player arrests since April? That's an absolute joke. And now not to mention his possible involvement in a sexual assault case cover-up for a couple of former players? Somebody's stock has fallen off the table... Remember when Ferentz was all over ESPN with the analysts debating over whether he would go to the NFL or take on another highly touted school?...Then he stayed at Iowa and since then has seen his average wins per season drop from 10.3 (2002-04) to 6.3 (2005-07). But hey, he's still raking in the cash and his contract sees him through 2012. Normally I would bash the U of Iowa for signing him to such a long-term deal, but honestly, who saw this coming? Ferentz's problems seem to be looming over quite similar to a once mighty Iowa State coach by the name of Larry Eustachy...and we all know what ended up happening to him. Ferentz is quoted, defending himself, "If a logical person looked at this for anybody to be involved in a cover-up here, basically you’d have to be morally bankrupt and secondly you’d have to be fairly ignorant." Who is he trying to bash here? The media? Sometimes it's better to just keep your mouth shut. Calling out the media is only going to cause him more trouble. Here's an idea Kirk: Get your players in line and keep them in check before you call ANYONE ignorant. Ignorance is not knowing any better, you on the other hand, do. So get your players off the streets and out of the big house, then maybe you can call some shots around the media.


Yeah, so Charles Barkley may just have the worst golf swing on the planet, but you gotta love this guy... I wonder how many times he's yelled "fore" in his lifetime? He speaks his mind and doesn't think twice about it. If you ask me, he's the modern-day Yogi Berra. So today, I'm going to leave you with my top five Barkley quotes...

#5: Kenny Smith: "Charles, there's guys who go over to Europe and play overseas from America, and they dominate!"....Charles' response: "Yeah, those are called 'brothers'."

#4: Before his famous race against referee Dick Bavetta: "Dick Bavetta and Moses parted the Red Sea together"

#3: Talking about an NCAA tournament game that saw UNC miss 22 of its last 23 shots in a loss to Georgetown...Charles goes, "Stevie Wonder could make one of 23 shots."

#2: On one of Nate Robinson's dunks during All Star weekend in 2007: "Any time a little midget does something like this, you gotta give him a 10!"

#1: "Poor black people are in great shape. Black people use duct tape for everything. You break a chair, use duct tape. Your pants rip, use duct tape. You tear your ACL, use duct tape!"

Now Charles wants to be a politician....Hey if Arnold can get in, why not Barkley?

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Who's It Gonna Be?

Rex Grossman or Kyle Orton? Kyle Orton or Rex Grossman? Excuse me, may I interject with my opinion? Okay here it is. Neither. Rex Grossman has been an underachiever ever since his debut against Minnesota in '03 where he only completed 13 of his 30 passing attempts. Kyle Orton, the stud from Purdue has also underachieved...but at least he seems to win games and not throw them away like Grossman. I think Rex has more talent than Kyle, but I remember a 2005 rookie season that saw Orton go 10-5. So who do you take? Talent and losses or no talent and maybe some wins with a more unreliable QB. Unfortunately the Bears can't start Brian Urlacher or Devin Hester at QB. Also too bad that great Chicago D and special teams has to have such a hideous offense. Here was my idea on the quarterback controversy. It could be fixed in 3 different ways: #1: The Bears had 12 picks in this year's draft...quarterbacks drafted: zero. Opporunity #2: Two words - Donovan McNabb. Chance #3: Might be a little rash, but just start firing some offensive coaches...But who knows...maybe one of those two will have a miracle season...if I'd have to pick between the two: Orton. If he doesn't start winning: Grossman gets the call...after all, he DID go to the Super Bowl a couple years ago.

Other stuff:

Manny wants to get traded now...why doesn't that surprise me? He says "If the Red Sox are a better team without me in the lineup then I would welcome a trade." Get your head on straight Ramirez, that comment made no sense seeing as you took yourself out of the lineup in the first place.

Watching part of the Yanks/Boston game on ESPN. Jon Miller, you might be the worst commentator on the planet. Get Charles Barkley in there or something...Sir Charles is the man.

I think it's about time they re-named SportsCenter to FavreCenter.

Hats off to Goose Gossage. Welcome to the Hall.

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Boring Friday, Let's Talk About The Yankees

I worked until damn-near 11:00 last night so I didn't get a chance to write yesterday. And even now I struggle to find a topic. Friday was a pretty uneventful day for sports. One thing did catch my eye though. Yankees/BoSox. I saw last night that SportsCenter was doing a poll on whether the NY/Boston series is any more exciting than any other series in the bigs...of course it is! The Yanks knocked off Josh Beckett in a 1-0 thriller and Joba nearly knocked off Kevin Youkilis' head. Both benches were warned, but would they have been if it was any other series? Exactly as Joba put it in a post-game interview: It was a 2-0 count and you have a 1-0 lead. Not exactly a plunking situation so stop crying BoSox...and don't get me wrong, I hate the Yanks so I'm not picking sides. It is interesting though that Joba picked Youk to throw at in NY last year and got tossed for it. But I must admit, Chamberlain is the man. He's allowed 3 runs or less in all 10 of his starts, but somehow is posting a 3-3 record...where's the run support, Giambi?

Speaking of Giambi, you gotta love the 'stache...mustache ride anyone? All right, I'll stop picking on Jason...he did have the winning "hit" on Friday...if you call an infield dribbler away from the shift a "hit."

Where in the world is Manny Ramirez? Sitting out a rival series game with a supposed bum knee when the doctors said it's fine? Somebody's sending somebody a statement....Just Manny being Manny.

Also in the news:

Trade deadline's coming up...and I have NO idea where ANYONE is going. I'm not even gonna make a guess. I'll leave that to ESPN's so-called "experts"...or former MLB players who know nothing...(cough) Eduardo Perez (cough)

Favre can talk to Tampa Bay and the Jets now...God I'm sick of Favre. Too bad, I used to like the guy.

Former Notre Dame stud receiver Jeff Samardzija finally got the call from the bullpen for the Cubbies. Didn't look bad except he gave up the lead...and that pitch that he threw "just a bit outside!" ...Nice try getting that one..And one more thing...maybe Jeff and Bronson Arroyo can go to the barber shop together...if they even know where to find it anymore.

Boston fans were holding up pictures of Madonna during A-Rod's at-bats on Friday night...I couldn't help but laugh...

Friday, July 25, 2008

Big Z: Hitter's AND Pitcher's Worst Nightmare?

Carlos Zambrano is hitting .356....and has a slugging percentage of .542...not to mention he's 11-4 with a miniscule 2.96 ERA in 20 starts this year. If none of those numbers mean anything to you, allow me to put some emphasis on them. First off, don't get me wrong...I understand the guy only hits in the lineup every 5 games, but seriously, have the Cubbies considered moving him up in the order? That .542 slugging tops the .501 a certain Ryan Howard is posting. Oh and that one guy...uhh..oh yeah, Josh Hamilton: Slug % of .542. That .356 average puts him only behind Chipper Jones, who finally is no longer in the chase for .400 sitting at .369. The Biz Z on the mound is also tied for 5th in the NL in wins and 6th in ERA. Knocking the ball around the park and pitching your team to wins in a tight divisional race (thanks to the Brew Crew's 8 straight victories) has got to feel good, especially for a guy who brings that kind of an attitude to the ballpark. How can you not like this guy?

Other notes:

With Dan Haren and Brandon Webb, can someone please tell me how the D-Backs are a game under .500? Oh yeah, this is why. Those two are a combined 22-9 and Doug Davis, Micah Owings and an ancient Randy Johnson round out the rotation with a 16-20 record and posting an average ERA of about 4.70. The team is can't expect them to throw up 6 or 7 runs on the board every game.

The Rays and Red Sox are now knotted up at the top of the AL East thanks to a disappointing loss by Tampa to Kansas City. Why do I have a bad feeling about this feel-good Rays story...?

The Packers might postpone Brett Favre's jersey retirement...really? Fancy that.

17 players got ejected during a 10 minute brawl in a class A game between the Cubs and Reds affiliates and a fan was taken to the hospital when a Cubs pitcher threw a ball at the Reds' dugout but missed. Wow guys, can someone tell these hotheads to grow up? You can see the whole fiasco here.

That WNBA fight lead to a 50-year old ESPN analyst Nancy Lieberman playing tonight.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

What's Bugging Me

So am I the only person on earth who is getting sick and tired of hearing about Brett Favre, Tim Donaghy, and A-Rod?

First, Favre. Okay Brett, so you retired too early...was anyone doubting that? So now your Pack is saying they're moving on and sticking with the kid Aaron Rodgers. Asking for a release simply isn't happening. Let's be realistic here. Brett, you are ranked NUMBER ONE on the all-time touchdown passes list and had a hell of a season last year. You're not going to get thrown away. A trade needs to be made by the Packers organization...but they continue to stall for some unknown reason. Bottom line - Brett: be realistic. Packers: do something.

Next up, Tim. This guy is a loser. Flat out. Everyone needs to get it through their head that the entire group of NBA refs aren't corrupt. You come upon one idiot and he flips the entire sport upside down. Well at least it's getting some publicity for the NBA and commish Stern.

Ahh, and then there's A-Rod. Speaking of losers...okay I'm not calling him a loser but who cheats on a wife who looks like this? And for soon-to-be 52 year-old Madonna? Wow, this is almost as bad as the Hugh Grant/Divine Brown "oral survices" incident. Come on Alex, get your priorities straight. You finally get New York off your ass and now you find another way to get negative publicity.

Oh and just for fun...a little something to think about for the day...How good would the Tampa Bay Rays be if Josh Hamilton wouldn't have jumped on the heroine band wagon?

The Name Game

So I was talking to a friend of mine yesterday and somehow we got on the "Why is Ichiro's first name on the back of his jersey?" conversation. Well if you find yourself asking that question right now, I've heard different answers. False rumor: Ichiro, while playing in Japan, was on a terrible team and put his first name on the back of his jersey as a publicity stunt. (Maybe T.J. Houshmandzadeh should consider doing this...might save some fabric). The fact of the matter is that part of Asian culture is to have the family name first. So Ichiro Suzuki is actually Suzuki Ichiro in English. Okay, so now you're thinking, "So then why does it say Matsuzaka instead of Daisuke?" Because Ichiro doesn't like the name Suzuki...that may be the case for Yao as well...I guess the other guys don't mind having their first names on their jerseys...Just a thought.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Battle of the Manuels!

Okay, so I'm surfing my home page, of course they have a rolling page of updates and I notice there's a clip of the Mets v Phillies game where Phillies manager Charlie Manuel (note Charlie, not Mets manager Jerry) gets ejected in the bottom of the 3rd inning for arguing a supposed check swing by Carlos Delgado on an 0-2 count. Unfortunately I can't lift the video clip but Delgado obviously went on the swing. In response, C. Manuel steps out of the dugout and seems to have a normal coversation with third base umpire Marty Foster... Or else it seemed to be... Foster ejected Manuel and Delgado eventually went on to hit a jack in that at-bat. Maybe I'm making a bigger deal out of this than I should be, but from the video Manuel looked like he was just having a normal conversation with Foster...hmmm...maybe they pulled a 'Sweet' Lou on the Aquafina commercial...I guess Manuel has a reputation to uphold as the manager of the new leaders of the NL East....All thanks to a 6 run barrage in the 9th off Joe Smith and Pedro Feliciano...5 of those runs scored before the Mets even recorded an out. I'm I missing something? Smith and Feliciano....was Billy Wagner taking a nap? A 5-2 lead and Billy's on the shelf with a "tight" felt "tight" in warmups Sunday and he mowed down all 3 Reds he faced to earn his 24th save of the year. The MRI was negative. You're all right Billy. Well is this not slightly reminiscent of last year's Mets team?...Blowing leads, games, series', and playoff chances...I guess only time will tell. (above photo courtesy

Welcome, I Guess?

Hey everyone. I guess I'd like to welcome any of you who are sitting on your computers, in your PJ's, eating a bowl of last night's chile....or whatever you're doing... First let me introduce myself if you don't already know me. My name is Jason Miller and I am from a tiny town called Coon Rapids, Iowa (pop. 1,205). I recently graduated from CR-B high school and I'm attending ISU (Iowa State) in the fall majoring in journalism and mass communications. Because blogs are such a hot topic these days I figured I should get a head start...I read some sports blogs and it looked like a good way for me to express my opinions on sports as well. So here it is! I'll cover pretty much anything I feel like in a particular day...but I'll try to stay on the whole sports topic. Oh and if you've made it this far, I am quite impressed...haha.