Thursday, January 8, 2009

Sporting Thoughts

Some updates from around the world of sports.

- After yesterday’s rant against college football, Rick Reilly publishes a piece about the very same thing. I swear I didn’t read this first. Reilly does a much better job than I, but I get to use obscenities and he doesn’t. So there.

Anyway, a couple of things Reilly mentions that I wasn’t even aware of.

First, the current system (I will not use those three letters) only includes 66 of the nation’s D1 football schools. And one of those is NOT Utah. No idea how they decided who would be included, but I’ll bet bags of money were involved.

Second, the Attorney General of Utah is launching his own anti-trust investigation into that evil organization that will never be mentioned by me again and none other than President Elect Obama has pledged to do the same thing if some sort of fair playoff system isn’t instituted immediately.

Let’s see where this is headed. Everyone on the outside looking in thinks the Utah hearings are just sour grapes and Obama has better things to worry about, but I’m all for intensifying the heat on this idiocy.

- If you’re wondering, no I’m not worried about the Celtics current slump. However, I should point out that the only reason I’m not worried is because I haven’t even been watching them. I’ve seen a few spurts here and there, but have yet to sit through an entire game. Once NFL season is over, I’ll pick up on it. Usually late January or mid February is when I pick up the NBA torch. Talk to me then.

- As disappointing as it was not to get Teixiera and the added depression of seeing him go to the Yankees, I’m glad the Red Sox didn’t sign him to that long a contract. Eight years is a long time. Just ask Manny and every Red Sox fan that enjoyed watching him.

- I do like the signing of Brad Penny, by the way (is that even official, yet?). I still hope the Sox take a chance on Ben Sheets, too. Some sort of incentive contract that protects them when (not if) he winds up on the DL.

- Let me get this straight. Manny (or more likely Boras) has refused multi year offers from both the Dodgers (rumored to be two years at $40 million) and now the Giants who have stepped far back after hearing his contract demands. This means there are basically two teams that can afford to sign him. The Mets and the Yankees. I would add the Red Sox, but let’s be real. While I still wouldn’t count out the Yankees, it would seem the most logical landing spot would be the Mets. Only they don’t seem interested.

So the question becomes, what the hell is Boras doing? Does he expect another 8 year $200 million dollar offer for a 36 year old outfielder who is an infamous space shot, a defensive liability and been known to quit on his team more than a few times? While the Giants say his demands are too high, what exactly are those demands? (rumors are a 4 to 5 year deal at $25 million per). And at what point does Boras have to settle for a lower than expected contract for Manny? If teams that can actually afford Manny are scared of by Boras’ price tag and other teams won’t bite, what happens then?

Let’s not forget that Boras completely bungled A-Rod’s opt out last winter to the point that A-Rod himself took over the negotiations with the Yankees.

- I noticed Andy Pettitte declined a one year, $10 million offer from the Yankees. Wonder how he would look in a Boston uniform?

- In a story that gets more ridiculous by the hour, the Boston College football head coach is probably going to be fired because he interviewed for the New York Jets head coaching spot. I don’t know the dirty details, but when the Athletic Director found out (from a reporter, no less) that Jeff Jagodzinski had an interview scheduled he was told he’d be fired if he went through with it.

Jagodzinski, in a move similar to what most of us would have done, basically flipped them the bird and interviewed anyway. Look, I understand that contracts are involved, but is that AD really going to tell the world that if he had a shot at becoming General Manager or Vice President of an NFL team he wouldn’t at least look into it? Maybe talk to a few people on that team on the sly to see what’s going on? Of course he would. Just like every single one of us has interviewed for another job without telling our current bosses we were doing so. Changing jobs to further our career. We’ve all done it and, considering the egotistical nature of football coaches, why should we expect any less from them?

Holding Jagodzinski’s feet to the fire over an interview is only going to make people not want to work for you. Career advancement is the name of the game and the ultimate prize is to win a Super Bowl in the NFL. Can’t do that standing on the sideline of an average Catholic college.

Oh, look! They did fire him! Great!

- My ‘Streak For The Cash’ atrocious run took an even uglier turn Monday night. Instead of picking a team, I decided to mix it up and select Carmelo Anthony as scoring more points than Danny Granger. In the second quarter he went for a put back and somebody smacked his hand. Turns out it’s broken and he’ll be missing at least three weeks. Sorry, Carmelo. Didn’t realize I was an actual curse.

If I could only pick the Yankees I might be onto something.

- Hey, you know who else still hasn’t signed with anyone? Adam Dunn. He of the ‘I’ve had at least 40 homers the last five seasons, but only hit .240’ fame.

And since we’re here, a few other free agents that would be worth considering for short money:

Bobby Abreu
Garret Anderson
Rocco Baldelli
Eric Hinske (played great for the Devil Rays last season)
Orlando Hudson
Brad Wilkerson
Gregg Zaun

And if you’re still looking for starting pitching, these guys can be had:

Pedro Martinez
Paul Byrd (go figure)
Ben Sheets
Mark Prior (worth a gamble? Still only 28)
Andy Pettitte
Randy Wolf

And two starters that I would love to see on the Sox just to get Tim Wakefield out of the rotation (no offense, Wake, but you’re a crap shoot):

Mark Mulder: Coming off an injury, but word is some Sox reps went to Arizona to watch him pitch last weekend. Might be worth the risk if he can return to form.

Jon Garland: Not a great last year, but he’s durable and would be a quality end of rotation guy. And he’s only 29. I know. Feels like he’s been around forever.

Also, Sidney Ponson is still available. He can be found at the all you can eat buffet at the Divi Divi.

That’s it for today. By the time this goes up, there will probably be a huge Manny signing or another blockbuster trade or something. I can’t keep up!

Today’s distraction: High speed water photography. While these are impressive (and some downright beautiful), I’m having a hard time getting over that some dude is making a nice living taking pictures of drips.


Hammen said...

Thoughts on Rocco Baldelli? I'm on board.

BeachBum said...

Me too! He won't play every day, but has much better arm and bat then Coco, that's for sure.

I like the gamble on Smoltz, too. $5 mil is worth the risk if he's really healthy.