Thursday, June 12, 2008

Milton Bradley Lost It, The Sun Set, And Other News This Week

It has been over a week since I have written anything sports related because this page was not loading properly and I couldn't post to it anyway. To say the least, it has been an eventful week, so today will be just a quick recap of the biggest sports stories of the week in my world:

Everyone is piling onto Mets' manager Willie Randolph because the team stinks. For a long while I thought this was mostly unfounded, but the more they lose the more you realize that something needs to change. I wonder though, why is Omar Minaya's job so safe. After all, he is the person who spent all the money and equipped Randolph's clubhouse with all of these chumps. So Carlos Delgado seems to be hitting again, but the Mets' regular bench consists of Damion Easley, Endy Chavez, Marlon Anderson, Fernando Tatis. Granted, there have been a lot of injuries and the team has had to dig deeper into the bench than Minaya could have expected, but these guys combine for a .209 batting average, with 32 runs, 27 RBI, 16 extra base hits, 15 walks and 49 strikeouts in the equivalent of about 90 games played.

Granted: if Pedro Martinez, El Duque, Ryan Church, Moises Alou, Angel Pagan, and Luis Castillo hadn't all been on the DL for extended periods this season, they could easily have accounted for the 6.5 games that the team trails the Phillies, but every team gets injuries. This team fills holes with old, slow, injured, has-beens with no minor league prospects to be found. When do we start blaming Minaya?

It is hard to give any credence to what Tim Donaghy says about games being fixed in the playoffs because Donaghy is a crook who could likely just be throwing blame around, but the guys sure picked interesting games to mention. And not that I think we should go around believing every scrumbags conspiracy theories, but didn't the world react the same way to Jose Canseco's wild claims until they turned out to be almost 100% true? And David Stern is not doing the league any favors by being a smug, arrogant prick that almost makes you root for the other scumbag to bring him down.

Soon I will research the worst current contracts in baseball. The Dodgers' announcers were ripping the Mets last week for having this crazy payroll and I have a feeling they would not be happy with that I discover (I am looking at you Esteban Loaiza, Andruw Jones and Jason Schmidt).

The Orioles sent Steve Trachsel to the minors the other day. Since he has been gone, the league-wide average game time has dropped by 11 minutes.

Kevin Garnett did a commercial for ABC's Finals coverage in which he makes sweet love to the Finals Trophy. I don't like players holding a trophy they haven't won and talking about how good it feels to hold it. You don't touch it until you deserve to touch it.

Through three games, the Lakers' fans are proving what everyone things about L.A. sports fans: lazy, unintelligent and uncreative. They don't cheer unless the scoreboard tells them to, and the best chants they came up with were "Boston Sucks," and "MVP." Really? OK, so "beat L.A." is not much better than "Boston sucks," but it is better somehow. But Laker fans cannot compete with a Boston crowd that chants "No means no" at Kobe Bryant on the free throw line. Absolutely classic.

ABC pulled the most shameless in a long line of shameless promotional plugs in Game 3. They actually had a 3-D cardboard Wall-E ad in the seats for the game. This makes Fox look tasteful and dignified. Well, not dignified...actually, just forget I wrote that.

Chris Simms has asked to be released from his contract because he says he doesn't see himself fitting into their QB plans and wants to play somewhere. I have two thoughts here: the Giants should sign him and win Super Bowls with father and son (son on the bench of course), and why did Simms feel no hope for playing time in Tampa? San Diego Torero Josh Johnson, baby!

Michael Strahan pulled a John Elway and retired at the pinnacle of his career. Thank you Michael!

Dontrelle Willis was sent to the Minors because he was struggling. Not big news there. Except that he wasn't just struggling: his ERA was 10.32, and he had 5 strikeouts and 21 walks in 4 starts. And he wasn't just sent to the Minors, he was sent to Class A! Ya think his $29 million contract will be on my list?

Kobe Bryant got a technical foul in Game 2 and another in Game 3 for whining for calls on the only two plays that there probably was no actual contact. He hasn't punched anyone yet though, so thus far his behavior has been well above standard, except the pouting, screaming at teammates to stop shooting and give him the ball, whining, posing and almost total avoidance of the team's actual offensive strategy.

The Celtics are not as bad as everyone thought they would be and the Lakers are not as good. It is very likely that Kobe will not pass the ball once for the rest of the series (1 assists in the "must-win" Game 3). And as long as I watch the games with my friend Justin (who went to Gonzaga but I am the forgiving sort), the Celtics will win if the pattern holds.

5 points goes to any reader who can remember the first and last name of Big Brown's trainer without looking it up. Post it in a comment to this post. It has only been 5 days and already no one cares. But hey, at least everyone thought he was a complete ass during the duration of his 15 minutes.

It is weird to think that I have played golf on the course on which the U.S. Open is being played today/this weekend. That almost makes me a pro. I want free clubs. When I played at Torrey Pines, it was the week after the Buick Invitational in 2000. The course was tough and long, the rough was deep and the empty grandstands and T.V. towers were very intimidating. This week, the course is playing a lot tougher and a lot longer, the rough is probably 2 inches deeper and the grandstands and T.V. towers will be full. I am starting to think that professional golfers might be better than I am.

Milton Bradley blew up and tried to kill someone yesterday. Not news, I know, but it is a funny story: the Royals announcer said that Bradley would be well served to own up to his mistakes and move past them like Josh Hamilton has done. Bradley went nuts when he heard the comments, stormed through the clubhouse and had to be restrained from going into the booth to apparently take the guy's life, thus proving the guy right. He then was dragged back to the clubhouse and began sobbing about how no one thinks he's changed and gotten over his anger problems.

Maybe it was the scouting report on the Diamondbacks, but on Tuesday John Maine threw 104 pitches. 80 of them were fastballs. How about mixing in an off-speed pitch once in a while (that said, he struck out seven and was in line for a win before the bullpen blew another lead and the offense feel asleep in the last half of the game again).

Milton Bradley just screamed at me from the street. He's coming upstairs...I have to go.

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