Monday, April 11, 2005

BRING ME THE HEAD OF VERNON WELLS

The Sox should take two of three from the Blue Jays this weekend, even though the Jays are a much better team than last season. Good young hitters with power potential, young arms, and a vastly improved pipeline of talent coming up from the minor leagues. General Manager J.P. Riccardi has done a heck of a job rebuilding this team. They should win 85 games this year and finish in third, ahead of the D-Rays and Orioles.

I would say the Sox should sweep, but that Roy Halladay is really a great pitcher.

The Masters will be on this weekend, but I have a hard enough time making time for baseball, I think random Tiger updates and Golf Channel recaps on ON-DEMAND are the viable alternatives.

It will be strange not to have Sean McDonough on the UPN38 Sox broadcasts on Friday night this season. I do not understand to this day why the Sox did not bend over backwards to get McDonough on at least half of the games. He is simply one of the best, pure sportscasters out there today.

I think the biggest problem Mariano Rivera has to deal with is the fact that the Yankees pitching coach is a joke. I believe Mel Stottlemyre is around only to share a few drinks with Torre after a tough loss. Otherwise, he seems to nod his head a lot, slap the pitcher on the butt, and say Go get them a lot. But he helps them win in the regular season by staying out of the way of the pitchers on the staff, so that is all that matters to Regular Joe…well, I bet he also mixes a great martini.

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MICHIGAN EAST:

Since the Patriots are signing Michigan Wolverine teammates of Tom Brady who were underachieving high draft picks of the Chicago Bears, can we expect the A-Train to rumble into town soon? Anthony Thomas, aka the A-Train, is an unrestricted free agent. Thomas fits the Belichick running back profile, as his between the tackles, downhill running style makes him similar to a younger Antoine Smith.

If Thomas is still available after the draft, and the Patriots do not address the running back position, Thomas could fit in on the cheap as a backup to Corey Dillon.

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MONTY! FAN CLUB IS CALLED TO ORDER:

Sorry, Oberacker, this is not the fan club to the daily comic strip formerly known as Robotman, but rather that the Patriots finally acknowledged their gaping hole at ILB and signed former Kansas City Chief Monty Beisel. I will from now forward refer to the Patriots new linebacker only as Monty! or Beisel the Diesel.

Monty! is viewed as a Bruschi Lite. Having moved to linebacker from defensive end upon joining the NFL, Beisel the Diesel spent time at special teams and back-up before becoming a starter, and performing very well, for Coach Cries-a-lot, Dick Vermeil, and the woeful Kansas City Chiefs defense.

Belichick apparently likes what he sees out of the Chiefs linebackers, having attempted to sign current KC inside linebacker Mike Maslowski back when he was a restricted free agent a few years back.

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FREE ADVICE FOR REGULAR JOE:

In the name of defense and decency, what kind of idiot does not have the common sense to move A-Rod to shortstop and Jeter to centerfield and put Bernie Williams on the bench as the designated hitter. Jason Giambi and Tino Martinez can then create the first lefty-lefty platoon at first base. Or bench them both and play Horsehead Posada over at first and make John Flaherty the full-time catcher. He cannot be any worse defensively than Posada.

THE DEIFICATION OF JETER:

Let me first say that I have nothing personal against Derek Jeter. I respect him as a baseball player. He is one of the only players in the league who actually hustles. He was the only Yankee player with a pulse in game seven against the Sox last year. But he is not a great player. He is a good player who plays the game right in the largest media market in sports that was desperate for a marketable star when he arrived in the Big Apple. If he played in Pittsburgh, he would be Jack Wilson.

Here is how the Yankee fans argue about how Jeter is the greatest:

He has intangibles.
That means we love him but his stats do not back up what we say. Tom Brady has intangibles and they translate into statistics and championships.

He is a winner.
That means he has played on the team with the largest payroll his entire career. I guess Luis Sojo had better prepare his Hall of Fame speech.

Remember the flip!
If Roids Giambi had slid into home plate the play would be fondly recalled in Oakland as Jeter was a half second slow.

He is the best baserunner in baseball.
You mean he goes from first to third on a single just like every other base-runner under 240 pounds?

No one goes back on pop-ups better than him at shortstop.
That means his centerfielder has no cartilage in his knees and his leftfielder plays twenty feet too deep on every hitter. It must be a byproduct from playing in those undersized Japanese ballparks for so many years. Check out Bobblehead Matsui in the field at Fenway, you would think that if he thought the coaches would let him, he would stand out there with his back to the Green Monster. Besides, catching pop-ups further strengthens my argument that he belongs in centerfield.

Bill James works for the Red Sox now, so his defensive zone rating analysis statistics that show Jeter as one of the worst defensive shortstops in baseball must be biased.
Right, and because he worked for the Royals in the mid 1980s he must be biased towards Angel Berroa.

A-Rod is a choker, Nomar has never been the same since his wrist injury, Omar Vizquel cannot hit, and Miguel Tejada is a roids poster boy.
Hey, who am I to deny this rant? Finally this is one argument that actually makes some sense, except for not having anything bad to say about Edgar Renteria.

He is comparable to Hall-of-Famer Wade Boggs in offensive categories, well, except batting average.
Right, because there really is no big difference between hitting .287 and .345 is there?

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