05.30.06

Theisman Goes Off On Ricky

Posted in Gridiron, Sports Radio at 11:44 am by

I suspect Cathy Lee Crosby might have something to say about about her ex’s degree of self-righteous outrage.

Still, it’s kind of sweet that Joe is “embarrassed right now to be a Toronto Argonaut,” (as opposed to say, a long retired player who is currently employed by the Walt Disney Company). How dare Ricky Williams tarnish the reputation of a club once owned by Bruce McNall!

Boras : Twins’ Treatment Of Lohse Is Lousy

Posted in Baseball at 9:17 am by

Though this is an instance where I don’t think the agent is doing his client any favors, I’m also surprised Kyle Lohse hasn’t been traded already. From the St. Paul Pioneer Press’s Gordon Wittenmyer.

As Kyle Lohse prepared to make his third start since his demotion to the minor leagues, his agent, Scott Boras, said Monday his client should be in the majors and suggested he would rather have the Twins trade him sooner than later if they don’t plan to bring him back.

“We know there’s a lot of teams interested in him,” Boras said from his dugout suite at Angels Stadium before Monday night’s game. “We’ve been told the Twins want a lot for him. Our frustration is that Kyle’s a major league pitcher; the Minnesota Twins know that, and we know that.”

Boras stopped short of saying he and Lohse have asked for a trade. “Terry Ryan runs the team. I don’t,” he said. “I’m not going to tell teams how to do their business.”

Lohse pitched his second complete game in three starts for Class AAA Rochester on Monday night but lost 3-1 to Toledo. He gave up two earned runs on four hits and two walks while striking out three. He is 1-1 with a 1.42 earned-run average in his 19 innings (the game he didn’t complete he left after four scoreless innings because of a lengthy rain delay).

He was 2-4 with an 8.92 ERA in eight starts for the Twins before being demoted.

Boras said he has been told at least six teams have been asked for top prospects in trade talks with the Twins.

The Dodgers’ Brad Penny was pissed off yesterday after being yanked against the Braves (a game won by LA, 12-5) and Dodger Thoughts’ Jon Wiseman would like the pitcher to put a sock in it.

The thing with Penny is this. With a seven-run lead, his job is to throw the ball over the plate. Thus, the first few hits that get smacked off him are excusable. Not desirable, but excusable. But after a certain point, Penny has to bear down and pitch. He might not have felt he reached that point until the Betemit hit – and then was disappointed to have (in his point of view) the grass pulled out from under him.

I apologize for tooting my own horn, but I think I was onto something when I warned the rest of you there was a scientific explanation for Jose Valentin’s sudden turnaround.

Surf’s up : Monday’s least convincing internet hoax. On a related note, Lastings Milledge was 3 for 6 yesterday in Norfolk’s 11-1 beating of Pawtucket, with a double and 3 RBI’s. Ewan McLane ran his record to 4-0, and lowered his ERA to 1.93 with 7 innings of one-run ball. Former Met / archery enthusiast / New Weird America figurehead Matt Ginter took the loss for the PawSox.

Describing the owners of Chicago’s sports franchises as “about as hip and 21st century as Engelbert Humperdinck” and stressing that Mark Cuban “likes rap music”, the Sun-Times’ maestro of mascara, Jay Mariotti would like to see the Dallas Mavericks owner with a boner purchase the Chicago Cubs.

Clearly, I am not the only one who has pondered the notion of this middle-aged frat guy — and the most successful of the new breed of sports owners — rescuing the Cubs from themselves. “Please ask Cubs fans to stop sending me e-mails asking me to buy the team,” Cuban wrote. “Between Chicago, Pittsburgh and K.C., it’s killing my inbox.”

The Doctor, Nearly Decapitated

Posted in Basketball at 12:03 am by

(link swiped from Supersonicsoul)

05.29.06

Bulls Ready To Trade Down?

Posted in Basketball at 10:03 pm by

Not only can the New York Knicks spend the summer regretting the Eddy Curry trade that cost them June’s no. 2 overall pick, there’s also a chance that said selection might’ve been enough to acquire Shawn Marion writes the Daily Herald’s Mike McGraw.

There is talk around the NBA that the Phoenix Suns may be willing to move Marion this summer. At first glance, the idea seems absurd, since the 28-year-old forward is coming off consecutive third-team all-NBA honors.

But here™s the theory: The Suns™ payroll is already close to $60 million for next season, just below luxury-tax threshold. The team also has a new owner, Robert Sarver, who paid a high price to gain control from the Colangelo family.

The Suns expect to have Amare Stoudemire back from a knee injury next year, and they found a capable small forward in Boris Diaw, who won the most-improved-player award and hit the winning shot against Dallas in Game 1 of the Western Conference finals.

Marion is owed about $48.5 million over the next three years, so the Suns might be willing to make a trade if they can get a big man in return and lose a few million in salary. Trimming the payroll would help Phoenix re-sign Diaw and guard Leandro Barbosa, who are eligible for extensions.

The Bulls could send their two first-round draft picks to Phoenix for Marion, which would give the Suns a shot at LaMarcus Aldridge or Tyrus Thomas with the No. 2 selection and also lower their payroll by about $10 million.

Would the Suns be interested in such a deal? Hard to say, but former Phoenix general manager Bryan Colangelo is sitting in Toronto with the No. 1 pick and might jump on the same trade if it™s available.

The Association’s Brett Edwards seems to be suggesting that Larry Hughes is done mourning. Hey, life goes on.

To borrow a popular phrase from a prior generation, No Justice, No Peace.


(Flash — closing in on his first Finals)

Rasheed Wallace just fouled out with 3:30 remaining and the Pistons trailing the Heat by 11. There’s a pretty huge disparity in free throws tonight but the Pistons — one or two calls aside — aren’t being jobbed. One of these teams has been playing a smart, well executed game, and it isn’t the squad coached by Flip Saunders.

The Albert Pujols Question

Posted in Baseball at 8:18 pm by

I can understand how it might be a wonderous distraction for MLB from all the sleazy Sultan talk if Albert Pujols were to break Barry Bonds’ single season HR mark…but what’s it gonna look like if Pujols cracks 80 by September 1? The Cards’ 1B hit a 3 run HR off Houston’s Chad Qualls today, providing all the offense St. Louis required in a 3-0 defeat of the Astros, as a strong effort by Roy Oswalt (6 IP, 0 runs, 7 hits, 5 K’s) was squandered.

Short of intentionally injuring Pujols and/or mixing up his urine sample with that of Abraham Nunez, I don’t know you can defend against him. Not only is pitching around him adviseable, but if Pujols came to bat with the winning run on third and the bases loaded, I’d seriously consider walking him intentionally, just to preserve a little dignity.

Both starters have been removed due to injury in Philly tonight ; Jon Lieber leaving early with a strained groinoid, and the Nats’ Mike O’Connor taking a bullet off his shin. The Phillies have just taken a 5-2 lead, as Ryan Howard has hit his 18th HR of the year off Gary Majewski, a 3 run shot to the front row of the left field seats. Howard’s had a ridiculous May, as has teammate Chase Utley.

The Mets’ 4-1 2nd inning lead over the Snakes is in peril of being washed away ; if only the rains had come before Howie Rose expounded at length regarding a supposedly snazzy pink shirt David Wright was wearing yesterday. Rose, perhaps trying to send a message of some sort to friends and family, hoped that Wright’s bravery in wearing such a garment in public would give others the resolve to do likewise.

In what can only be described as a total coincidence, SNY segued from live action to an episode of a Rain Delay Theatre feature in which “Sopranos” star Joe Gannascoli expressed his admiration for the Mets’ rugged third baseman.

This Day In Baseball History

Posted in Baseball at 4:43 pm by

May 29, 2000 : Oakland 2B Randy Velarde turned an unassisted triple play against the Yankees.

On behalf of everyone outraged by all things BALCO-related, I have petitioned the Commissioner’s Office to have Velarde’s achievment reclassified as an assisted triple play.  You’re welcome.

This Kinda Says It All…

Posted in Baseball at 3:23 pm by

The above jpg was swiped from the erudite gent behind Bloody, Vile Excrement.

At Wrigley this afternoon, Matt Murton just hit a solo HR off Cincy’s Elizardo Ramírez, and the Cubs lead the Reds, 4-2 in the bottom of the 6th. Plenty of time for the Cubs’ pen to blow it for Kerry Wood, then.

Earlier today in Cleveland, the White Sox teed off on the Indians’ “Jump Off A” Cliff Lee (2.2 IP, 8 hits, 7 earned runs), winning 11-0. Jim Thome (above), Paul Konerko and Juan Uribe all went deep off Lee, with Thome adding a 2 run blast off noted Mike Piazza punching bag Guillermo Mota. Thome has 20 homers on the young season and it is very safe to say that someday, he might be as prodigious a hitter as Ryan Howard. Javier Vazquez, Neil Cotts and Jeff Nelson combined on the 2 hit shutout.

Another AL Central club could only manage a pair of hits today, as Randy Johnson, Ron Villone and Kyle Farnsworth toyed with the Tigers in a 4-0 Yankees win. Johnson had a no-hitter through 5 and 2/3rds before allowing a single to Ivan Rodriguez. Derek Jeter left the game in the 5th inning ; the NY shortstop jammed his right hand while sliding into 2nd during the 3rd inning. It was just yesterday that John Sterling solemnly pronounced that “we’ll never see another one like him” when extolling Jeter’s virtues as the greatest living human. Perhaps the YES mouthpiece oughta consider the way he tempts fate with such superlatives.

NCAA Baseball Field Of 64 Announced

Posted in Baseball, College Spurts at 2:21 pm by

And as usual this time of year, there’s no outcry whatsoever for an NIT featuring another 32 teams.

A couple of thoughts on how the tournament might shape up :

1) UT-Arlington at Texas (Friday, 4pm, ESPNU) looks like a mismatch, but the Longhorns struggled in a few non-conference games this year against schools within driving distance.

2) Oklahoma State shouldn’t take Princeton too lightly — look out for that back door play!

3) Congrats to the Jaspers of Manhattan on qualifying for The Competition That Dares Not Call Itself The Big Dance for the first time in nearly 50 years.

Baseball America’s John Manuel examines the circumstances surrounding LSU’s lack of an invite, the first time the Tigers (35-24) have been excluded in 18 years.

Mississippi State got into the 64-team field over the Tigers. The Bulldogs–whose athletic director, Larry Templeton, is the head of the Division I baseball committee–finished a half-game behind the Tigers in the Southeastern Conference, did not qualify for the SEC tournament and won only one of their last eight weekend series after beginning the season 21-1. Mississippi State won the head-to-head series played in late March, winning two of three at LSU.


(unidentified Bulldogs players celebrate the New England Journal Of Medicine’s findings that there’s no correlation between excessive hot wing consumption and early impotence)

Committee member Mike Hamrick, the athletic director at Nevada-Las Vegas, handled questions about the Bulldogs-Tigers controversy after the field was announced because Templeton was not in the room when his school was discussed. Hamrick said it didn’t necessarily come down to the two SEC schools for one spot, saying instead they were part of 17 teams bidding for the last seven spots, and then later 12 teams for five spots. He cited the usual factors, such as Ratings Percentage Index (RPI), strength of schedule, wins against top 100 teams and how teams fared in their final 10 games.

“Mississippi State went 23-3 against teams outside the SEC,” Hamrick said. “It did take two of three (head to head with LSU) . . . Sometimes, the teams are so equally grouped, you have to look at the head to head.”

Iraq Unlikely To Win The Davis Cup Anytime Soon

Posted in Internal Affairs, Religion, Tennis, Video Games at 11:41 am by

You’ve probably heard the horrible story about two members of Iraq’s Olympic tennis squad (and their coach) being murdered last week for having the termerity to wear shorts in public.

With this horrible act of zealotry firmly in mind, today’s poll question is :

Q : Which vocalist for a Western pop group once slugged his tour manager and justified the assault by pointing out the victim had been wearing shorts?

The first person to correctly identify the superstar in question wins a copy of 2K6′s Major League Baseball (XBox or PS2 version).

Ricky Signs With Argos, Pledges Positivity

Posted in Gridiron at 11:32 am by

From the Toronto Star’s Rick Matsumoto.

Ricky Williams, sans the bushy beard and dreadlocks that had been his trademark, denied radio reports that he had attended a couple of Argo practices, but went unrecognized because of his altered appearance.

He’ll definitely be there when he lines up in the backfield today wearing jersey No. 27.

He said he wanted that number when he returned to the Dolphins last year after sitting out the 2004 season, but NFL rules do not allow high profile players to change numbers because of marketing profiles.

“This is a more positive outlook on life than I’ve had in the past and I wanted to initiate with No. 27, which is a positive number,” he said.

I’ll have to take Ricky’s word for it. And after all, who’d know more about testing postitive?