Tuesday, June 30, 2009
After todays trade, Eric Hinske will have made stops with the Blue Jays, Red Sox, Rays, Yankees and Pirates [ick]. The next logical stop is quite obviously Baltimore to lock up 5 for 5 in the AL East.
I listen to New York's Major Sports talk radio stations daily and each and every time I am amazed by the delusional Met fans that call up the station complaining about how their team isn't winning and how they're falling out of the race. To which the obvious response is, "What the hell did you think was going to happen when half your team got injured?", yet everyday there's still a new caller spitting out the same garbage. Please just take a look at the blatant facts.
Currently the Mets are without Jose Reyes, Carlos Beltran and Carlos Delgado, effectively 3 of the 4 major pieces of their lineup. In 2007 these 3 players combined for 71 of the Mets 172 Homers, 81 of the Mets 138 Steals, 315 of the Mets 799 Runs scored, and 295 of the Mets 755 RBI. Currently these players are being replaced in the lineup by Jeremy Reed who has 11 career homers with zero coming this season, Daniel Murphy who's hitting a robust .246 in his "breakout" season, and Alex Cora a perennial utility man with no power.
Now for good measure lets toss in the pitching injuries. John Mayne and Oliver Perez were supposed to combine with Mike Pelfrey to formulate the 2-3-4 spots in the rotation. Instead, Oliver Perez blew up and has been on the DL for months and a few weeks ago Mr. Mayne joined him. Last season the two combined for 58 starts and 20 Mets 89 wins, they combined for 302 of the Mets 1181 strikeouts, and if you take out Santana's stats from the equation they pitched superior to the average Met in their 334 IP. These two are being replaced by a guy cut by the Astros in Fernando Nieve and a guy cut by a multitude of teams Tim Redding. On top of all that JJ Putz was brought in to be the setup guy and for awhile he was doing the job, but like Mayne he fell to injuries and now the ripple effect of the Mets bullpen is taking place.
If you had to pick the 10 key components to a succesful Mets season these 6 players along with Wright, K-Rod, Santana and Pelfrey would accumulate this top ten. 60% of Mets key players are injured and yet their delusional fan base still expects them to win. It's time for a reality check.
Monday, June 29, 2009
The Draft has come and gone so now its time for teams to attempt to pawn off tickets on their fans by packaging them with "prize packs". Let's look at some of the great bargains you can get for the low price of thousands of dollars and 41 games to a team that likely is going to still suck despite the draft pick.
Friday, June 26, 2009
What Sport is a series of posts dedicated to figuring out what sport a certain fictional character would play. Today's topic is the Noid. Don't remember the Noid? Here's a refresher:
Description: The Noid was the annoying Pizza Crushing Bunny Rabbit thing invented by Domino's Pizza for their commercials in the 1980s. He went on to "star" in the epic video game Yo! Noid. He's basically a foot and a half rabbit gnome thing that likes to jump a lot.
The Options: Um at under 2 feet tall, the Noid's options are limited. You pretty much can throw out all the major sports. Plus he probably weighs nothing, so he likely doesn't even fit into a weight class for boxing or MMA or lifting. You're likely going to have to look towards serious niche sports if you can find anything at all.
Competitive Jump Rope: Competetive jump rope just might be the ideal sport for The Noid. He jumps a lot, he looks relatively quick. Plus his small height makes it increedibly easy for the guys twirling the jump rope to swing it in a circle.
Spelling Bee: Is the Spelling Bee a sport? No. But at least you don't need to be tall or athletic or strong to compete in it. I doubt the Noid can spell at all though so this probably isn't the go to option.
Hide and Go Seek: At 2 feet tall and skinny the Noid should be able to find really excellent hiding places for any circumstance. The problem is that Hide and Go Seek really isn't a sport either.
The Verdict: Competetive Jump Roping, honestly its the only option. Sorry Noid.
Disagree? Feel Free to Blast Away in the Comments.
No not really, just his shirt the Weis Guys at Sportscrack is. Must not be a hot seller.
Also Super Mario Manningham's shirt now has a pot induced discount.
Thursday, June 25, 2009
Well not really the pain train, but he was pretty close to kneeing her in the face which would have made for an ever more extreme video.
Courtesy of Hot Clicks
Here's your 2009 NBA Mock Draft, which was built according to my deviously brilliant calculation methods. Or by looking at experts mock drafts and changing things based on my random and likely incorrect personal opinions.
I'd explain the picks but, eh I don't feel like it. Just know my brilliance when I win the XBOX and NBA Live Game.
Congratulations goes to Danny Ferry this morning for trading absolutely nothing for Shaq. Absolutely positively nothing. Let's go over the three main reasons why this deal makes sense.
1. Getting Shaq Improves Their Team in 2009.
I don't think this really makes the Cavs immeasurably better than they were yesterday, but the fact is that they just got Shaq and gave up two players who aren't very good and a 2nd round draft pick that would likely amount to a player who winds up in the D League. Is Shaq the one missing piece Cleveland needed? Probably not. But in the end nothing about this doesn't make sense because even if the experiment fails miserably, than you still have point #2.
2. Getting Shaq Does Nothing Negative to Their Cap Space in 2010
When I talked about Lebron's needs earlier this year, I mentioned the fact that right now the Cavs are on pace to be incredibly cap open in 2010. The only three players that will be on their books in the offseason will be Mo Williams, Delonte West and Booby Gibson thus giving the Cavs the chance to sign Lebron James and two studs. Now with Shaq in the fold and coming off the books after this season, theoretically, the Cavs could sign two major free agents, say Joe Johnson and Chris Bosh, and then sign Shaq and Lebron afterwards to jump over the cap thanks to the NBAs weird cap rules.
3. Most Importantly This Will Make Lebron Happy
The key part of the Cavs future is making damn sure that LBJ goes no where in 2010, so to do that they need to make him happy. Getting Shaq shows Lebron that they are putting forth the effort to improve the team. Even if it doesn't morph into a Championship it gives LBJ the thought process that the Cavs are willing to make major maneuvers to put him in a better place. This can only help in convincing him to stay in Cleveland and to sell Cleveland to other free agent superstars in next years offseason.
All in all, I love this move for Cleveland. Even if next years team again comes up short for the title, it can only help their ability to keep LBJ come 2010, and that's the goal.
Dear MLB GMs,
I'm on the block. If you need an Ace pitcher, please call Josh Byrnes and let him know that Dan Haren told you to call because he's sick of the shit that plays around him on a nightly basis. Just in case you need to see my resume, it's right here.
Oh look, I'm basically the National league leader in every major pitching stat, except wins of course, because my team sucks. Hence my desire to pitch for a team that doesn't suck.
If you're curious as to how many wins I should have, well its 12. I've outlined the 6 games this year in which I've given up at most 2 runs yet not once in those games walked away with a win. Four of the 6 games I actually walked away with a loss.
Alright, I'm pissed and I don't really feel like talking about it anymore. Just someone please save me.
Wednesday, June 24, 2009
In fairness to all those douche Red Sox fans out there, if I'm gonna chronicle David Ortiz's Quest for the Mendoza Line, than I should give equal ground to Alex Rodriguez's quest. He's at .207 now with an average that's just gone down down down during the month of June.
I've mentioned this once already, but does this draft just feel like one of those drafts that is filled with mediocre players? First off basically everybody that's going to get drafted in the lottery is ridiculously young, so chances are good that you've barely seen any of them play much. Secondly, if you have, I doubt you came away terribly impressed.
Let's do a run down of each player in the top 30 and give my impressions of each.
1. Blake Griffin - He's far and away the best player in the draft, but A) He's going to be a Clipper and B) Does he have a mid range jumper? He's athletic as hell and will be good, but the Karl Malone comparisons are a bit much. How about somewhere in between Karl Malone and Carlos Boozer? Sound good?
2. Ricky Rubio - Raise your hand if you've seen Rubio play? [My hand is down]. The scouting reports say "Great Passer, Needs to Add Bulk, Not Incredibly Athletic, Not the Best Shooter, Defense is Good". 18 Year old upside is nice, but nobody seems to say this guy is gonna drop 20+ a game. So, not really screaming out #2 overall pick to me.
3. Hasheem Thabeet - Upside is Dikembe Mutombo right? All defense no offense, no touch, no hands. The one benefit for Thabeet is his free throw is smooth so maybe, and this is a big maybe, he can develop a Yao / Brad Miller like 15 footer to spread out the defense.
4. Tyreke Evans - Outside of Griffin, I think I like Tyreke the best but he still has major question marks like, "Can He Shoot?" and "What Position is He Going to Play?". He has an NBA body and NBA athleticism, but those question marks could be the red flag for bust city.
5. James Harden - He's been a consistent producer at Arizona St., but my lasting memories all point towards his NCAA tournament No Shows. He's a big time college scorer but so were guys like Jarvis Hayes and Reece Gaines and well they amounted to nothing.
6. Stephen Curry - The Upside is Reggie Miller. The downside is a guy too fragile to play a full season in the NBA. If you could guarantee him to be a Rip Hamilton / Reggie Miller type than its obvious, but his arms are the size of quarters.
7. Jordan Hill - He's mobile big and athletic. Those are fun. His offensive game is speculative and ESPN compares him to Ronnie Turiaf. That's a top 10 pick?
8. Brandon Jennings - Another point guard who's not a very good shooter, YAY! Jennings is T.J. Ford, this does not excite me.
9. DeMar DeRozan - Big, Athletic, Swingman with a questionable defensive effort, questionable basketball IQ, and questionable shooting. And he averaged 14 points a game for USC as a freshman. Does that sound NBA ready to you?
10. Jrue Holliday - Oh look, another point guard that can't shoot. Holliday shot .307 percent from 3 his freshman year and averaged under 9 points and under 4 assists. Yay lottery pick project.
11. Johnny Flynn - At least we know Flynn can carry a team and win big games. But wouldn't you know that we still don't know if he can shoot a jump shot. We also don't know if he get finish at 6-1 in the paint against an NBA defense.
12. Earl Clark - Did anybody see anything about Earl Clark in college that screamed this guys gonna be a star in the NBA? No? That's what I thought.
13. Terrence Williams - And we move to Clark's partner in crime, Terrence Williams, who coincidentally left the exact same feeling as Clark did.
14. DeJuan Blair - I loved Blair in college and obviously loved what he did against Thabeet and his hands around the rim. But is he gonna be an All-Star or a Craig Smith level player?
15. Gerald Henderson - Again, I don't think I even saw flashes where Gerald Henderson screamed NBA All Star. Plus, he's a Dukie so he inspires hate and hate alone.
I could go on down the list some more, but to be honest, who cares about guys outside the lottery.
Can you find a single player outside Griffin who you would bet the farm on that they were going to morph into a multiple year all star? I certainly wouldn't be able to lock that up.
The Minnesota Timberwolves decided to morph their team into the High School project by trading Mike Miller and Randy Foye for the 5th pick in Thursdays draft as well as Darius Songaila, Oleksiy Pecherov, and Etan Thomas. The trade now gives the Timberwolves the 5th, 6th, 18th and 28th pick in the draft.
The rumors of Mike Miller be dealt by the Timberwolves have been floating around for as long as he's been a member of the team but I'm pretty damn surprised that they dealt away Randy Foye. Foye is just 25 years old, he did average 16 points last year and the Timberwolves did trade Brandon Roy for him on draft day. I would think that the Timberwolves could have done better than a #5 pick and 3 useless players for two solid NBA guys.
The Timberwolves apparently desire to move up to the #2 pick in the draft, but even if they draft #5 & #6, that's two picks that they hope will have a major impact. Throw in the fact that now the best players on their roster are all 26 or under and you have a major youth movement. The core of their team is now Big Al, Ryan Gomes, Corey Brewer, Kevin Love, Craig Smith and Sebastian Telfair. I'd imagine that they are going to target a point guard because having Bassy run your team doesn't seem like a sound decision. It also makes sense to get some kind of scoring 2 guard threat considering they just traded away both of those options.
In the end I agree with the straight youth movement. I'm just not sure I understand the need to jettison Foye.
Tuesday, June 23, 2009
This is a quicky, but assuming you understand what BABIP is, if you don't go here, you need to see David Wright's ridiculous BABIP.
.467? Damn is that ridiculous. For some reason, I feel as if that .349 batting average is bound to take a dip soon enough.
Below are the stats of two individuals. See if you can figure out who they are. I'll list off a few helpful hints and then post the answer in the comments.
1. Players A is an outfielder while Player B is a third baseman.
2. The players play in opposite leagues.
3. Both Players are perennial all stars.
4. Player A's statline is close to expected while Player B's is a little out of the ordinary.
5. Player B has a BABIP of .467.
6. One player is a leadoff man while the other is a middle of the order hitter.
7. Neither player plays for a team who would currently qualify for the playoffs.
8. Player A and Player B play on opposite coasts.
9. Player A is in his mid 30s, Player B is in his late 20s.
10. Player A is Asian
Honestly is there anything more enjoyable than this whole Magglio Ordonez getting benched scenario. First off Ordonez has been absolute shit. He's hitting like a whimpy shortstop. The .273 average with a .347 OBP is catastrophic, but the .343 slugging percentage is hilariously inept. So him getting benched isn't completely ludicrous. Mr. Ortiz got benched earlier in the year for similar numbers and he's a Boston hero.
The hilarious part is obviously the vested options in his contract. His option is for 18 million dollars in 2010 and are based on the combination of his 2008 and 2009 total numbers. In 08 and 09 combined, Magglio needed to combine for 270 games started or 1080 at bats. In 2008 he had 614 at bats in 142 games played, meaning he needs just 464 at bats in 2009. Currently Magglio has 241 at bats, putting him just 223 at bats away or around 60 games away.
So who has the biggest problem with the benching? Scott Boras of course. He thinks the Tigers are benching Magglio strictly because of money. And why wouldn't he really? Even though Magglio has been shit, his backups are Marcus Thames, Clete Thomas and Brian Anderson, not exactly Murderer's Row. Regardless, I don't think there's anything Boras can do about it. His player hasn't produced, and thus his team is going to do what it can to free themselves from a miserable contract in 2010 and 2011. That's just how the cookie crumbles.
My favorite line was when someone compared his hitting to Rey Ordonez, now that's an insult. To Magglio's credit, he may be hitting like a bitch, but his .347 OBP and .343 SLG% are still better than any of Rey Rey's career highs in a full season.
Below there are 14 Pictures of NBA Players in their Draft Day Suits. How well can you identify the high flyers? If you get stumped you can opt for help by either going here for 14 clues or here for the list of the 14 players so you can play fill in the blanks. When you're done or have given up, here are the answers.
Monday, June 22, 2009
On saturday I went for a voyage into the city of Boston to place myself in a building where 300+ beers were at my disposal. It's safe to say that this was a no brainer decision for myself and that I was not disappointed.
The American Craft Beer Fest as it was called had a total of 75 different Brewers, mostly New England based, and 300 plus beers to choose from. When you walk in after you've dropped your $40 bucks you get a little glass, probably around 4 oz or so. You then walk from booth to booth as they fill up your cup and you guzzle down one after the other (they're supposed to give you 2 oz but they certainly don't). That's pretty much all you do for 3 1/2 hours. Drink beer. Delicious beer. IPAs, Stouts, Ales, Lagers. Whatever you desire, its there.
So what I'm saying is, if a Beer Fest comes to your town, Go. It won't be a bad decision.
Need some Jet apparel on the cheap? Well the New York Jets online shop has just the thing for you, the Favre Fan Packs, in honor of our dearly departed hero Brett Favre. Why buy one authentic New York Jet jersey for $220 when you can get 3 BRETT FAVRE!*&^%! jerseys for the same price.
Want your baby to look stupid? You can get all three infant jerseys for just 30$, that's a $120 dollar value for just $30 dollars. You're pracitcally stealing the shit.
Do you desperately need a T-Shirt that says "Brett the Jet"? Of Course you do. But why stop there. You can get 2, count it 2 t-shirts for $15 dollars. How can you possibly pass up that bargain?
They really should just send all this crap to Nicaragua.
Are vertical stripes supposed to be slimming? I'm not sure it's working for Phil Mickelson. Especially today's white with brown stripe concoction. At least yesterday he looked like a 1920s Italian Mobster.
Unlike Ricky Barnes, I have actually heard of Lucas Glover before. But really the only reason I have is thanks to my addiction to ESPN Best Ball Challenge which was unceremoniously dumped this year. Regardless of my knowledge, I'm willing to bet you have no idea who Lucas Glover is so I'll give you a little run down to help prep you for this mornings action.
Lucas Glover was a 2-time 1st team all American at the University of Clemson which afforded him a spot on the Walker Cup team. For those of you who don't know what the Walker Cup is, it's essentially the Ryder Cup for college kids. The two yeas following college he played on the Nationwide Tour before earning his PGA Card for the 2004 season.
Since 2004 Glover has been on the PGA Tour. His results have been enough to keep him on the tour, but not enough to gain him any notoriety to the masses. He has 1 win since 2004, this coming in 2005 at the FUNAI Classic at Disney. He has made the cut of a major just 4 times in his career with his best finish being T20 at the 2007 Masters. 2009 is actually the first time in four attempts that Glover has made the cut of the US Open.
In his career Glover's best finish on the money list came in 2006 when he was 21st. Other notable moments for Glover came in 2007 when he was a member of the winning US President's Cup team. This season he has 2 Top-3 finishes, one coming at the Buick Invitational and the other coming at the Quail Hollow Championship.
Likely, none of these moments are enough to imbed the name Lucas Glover into the skulls of the casual golf fan. But today just might be that day. Like Ricky Barnes, Glover has no experience in this moment. He could easily choke. But with a 5 stroke lead, he's got the margin for error, and he definitely has the potential to be US Open Champion.
I like to think of myself as having a wealth of knowledge in all sports. I feel as if you throw a golfers name out there and I could likely say, "Yup I've heard of him" and in most cases be able to pick the player out of a lineup. But on saturday when I turned on the US Open and saw "-8 Ricky Barnes" at the top of the leaderboard, I immediately thought to myself, "Umm who the hell is Ricky Barnes?".
Thinking back on it, I've probably heard the name floated around before, but I 100% would not have been able to pick him out of a lineup. But since he's still tied for the lead going into the "final day" of the US Open, I figure it's time we all get to know Ricky Barnes and his goofy hats.
Barnes won the US Amateur in 2002, which is the only real reason you may have heard of him. He beat Hunter Mahan in the finals and in 2003 he went on to play in the three majors the US Amateur Championship affords a player. He finished 21st in the Masters that year for his best Major finish of his career. He followed that up by making the cut at the US Open and missing the cut at the British Open.
And since 2003, well there's not much to talk about. This is only his 2nd Major appearance since he missed the cut at the British. The only other Major he made was the US Open in 2007 when he missed the cut. Additionally, his PGA resume is almost non-existant as well. Since 2003 he's bounced mostly through the Nationwide Tour, which unless you work for the Golf Channel I'm going to guarantee you don't pay attention to. Even this year, a year he's on the PGA Tour, his best finish at any event is 47th.
Perhaps the 2009 US Open will be his reintroduction to the world. In 2002 he obviously was amongst the most talented youngsters on the planet. Today we find out if his gritt and his gut will be able to hold on to the US Open lead and afford him the resume of a two time USGA Trophy Holder.
Friday, June 19, 2009
Let's watch the not web gems of the season, featuring Luis Castillo & Milton Bradley of course.
Watching the US Open at Bethpage is quite enjoyable. You get to watch players like Padraig Harrington look mortal by shooting +6 over par and scrambling everytime he hits the ball into the rough. You get to watch 40 people search for an arrant tee shot because the rough is so long that there's no way 1 person would be able to find the ball. And then you think, I'm an ok golfer, I shoot in the 90s. What the hell would I shoot if I played Bethpage in the conditions they are now.
At first I said 125. You figure the Par 4s that are 500+ yards you are completely screwed. If I sting my drive the best I can, I can maybe hit it 270. On the largest par 4 that would mean I would need to sting my 3 wood off the fairway 250 yards and somehow softly land it on the green. HA. In my dreams. So that's pretty much automatically a bogey at best.
Than you have to think about what happens when you hit the ball in the rough. The rough would easily go past my knees. So if I wasn't playing with a gallery I would likely just give up trying to find the ball every time I hit it there, but lets assume for arguments sake I could in fact find every ball. How far do you think you could actually hit the ball from the rough? 50 yards? Maybe? My drives are at best 50% of the time in the fairway, and that's at more generous fairways than the US Open.
And of course you also have the Par 3s that are 220+ yards. I'd likely be hitting a 5 wood into these holes and my 5-wood isn't much more accurate than my driver. In fact it might be a little worse.
Essentially I figure add 1 stroke per hole before we even start talking. So for me it would be like a Par 90. And then I'd shoot 35 over par. I think that's about right.
So how do you think you would shoot?
Thursday, June 18, 2009
This past November the Yankees sold Darrell Rasner to the Tohoku Rakuten Golden Eagles of the Nippon Professional League in Japan. Now just months later, he is no longer Darrell Rasner, he is the RAZUNA!
Unfortunately for the RAZUNA and the Golden Eagles, Rasner has sucked. Now I'm translating the stats via google translate, but it appears as if the Razuna has pitched 10 games is 3-4 with a 6.62 ERA and is averaging barely over 5 innings per start. Not exactly dominating the competition. I guess to his credit he's at least been better than Wang.
Do you know Jered Weaver's stats this season? Be honest, do you have any idea how good Jered Weaver has been this season? I'm guessing not, but I'm not going to blame you. I watch Sportscenter on a daily basis and really haven't seen any features or much talk about him period. Maybe it's because he plays on the West Coast. Maybe it's because the Angels haven't performed at quite the levels that they were expected to thus far this season. Whatever the reason, I'm not going to blame you, I'm just going to inform you that you should know.
Jered Weaver is currently second in MLB in ERA at 2.08. Weaver is #1 in MLB in WHIP at 1.00. Weaver is #1 in batting average against at .203. Weaver's record sits at 7-2 in part due to some games where he had poor run support and suffered a no decision. At this point in time the only thing really seperating his stats from Greinke's who we all fell in love with last month are Greinke's superior K rates (he has close to 30 more).
Weaver is on fire now and emerging as a legitimate Cy Young contender and I figured that he deserved at least 1 person to talk about him.
Given my affinity for Big Al, I figured I'd talk about the rumor being tossed out that the Timberwolves were going to be jettisoning him and the #6 pick for Amar'e Stoudemire. Simply put it makes no sense. Before we discuss, let me just display their 08-09 stats.
First off let's just put it out their simply, Big Al had better stats than Stoudemire did. Now you can qualify it two ways, Stoudemire had Shaq and Big Al didn't so obviously his rebounds and shot totals are going to be down from what the Timberwolves leaned on Big Al to do. But you can also say that Amar'e's percentages are greatly enhanced by the easy buckets that having an elite point guard like Steve Nash can get you. Both suck at defense so really, it looks like Big Al probably had a better season.
Now to the off the court matters. Big Al is signed to a long term deal through 12/13 while Stoudemire can opt out of his deal following next year. Given that Minnesota isn't exactly the big time hot spot to attract free agents, why exactly would they want someone off the books next year when they have a building block currently in place.
Next is the age factor. Big Al is 2 years plus change younger than Amar'e. Neither is out of their prime or anything, but this is just another factor in Big Al's advantage especially given the fact that he's improved his scoring in each of his 5 years.
Health is currently in Amar'e's favor given that Big Al is recovering from a torn ACL, but in reality Stoudemire has been plagued by injuries his entire career and did have the microfracture surgery a few years back. This can't be that major of a factor, especially given the fact that the Timberwolves wouldn't exactly morph into a title contender if they picked up Amar'e for next season.
Lastly and most importantly, this entire post has been debating whether trading Big Al for Amar'e straight up makes any sense. Why the hell would the Timberwolves give up on their best player and the #6 draft pick for a guy that's set to be a free agent after this season? This makes absolutely positively no sense.