Monday, June 22, 2009

Raising Kahne in wine country

NASCAR brought its travelling series to a road course this weekend, in sunny Sonoma Ca. After weeks of weather playing havoc with the series, it was almost a lock that this would go off uninterrupted.

The weekend started off with what had to be a surprise, Marcus Ambrose taking the pole. Don't get me wrong, I understand there are specialists out there. For as many specialists, I give you failures from them.

24 hours after securing the pole, the very same Ambrose blew an engine and had to go to a backup. Without having practice laps in his car, Ambrose would find himself in the rear, instead of the front when the green flag dropped.

I am not a fan of Watkins Glen. Sonoma however, gives good racing.

This was proved throughout the day. There was the impressive comeback after a pit road speeding penalty by Jimmie Johnson, Marcus Ambrose stalking the field twice and ultimately finishing third. AJ Almindinger and teammate Elliot Sadler both finishing in the top ten.

Thats right boys and girls, 3 out of 4 RPM cars were in the top ten, and the one missing was due to car problems.

Kasey Kahne ultimately led 38 laps. He led the final 38 laps, holding off Tony Stewart repeatedly after the dreaded double file restart, or whatever gimmick TNT wants to call it. And don't worry, I will address TNT in a bit. I cant remember the total restarts, but Kasey definitely drove it like he stole it and never relinquished the lead, snapping a 37 win less streak.

Seeing Kasey in winners circle to me looks like he should be there. The king however, looked about as out of place as his son Kyle does on TV. Look, I am not bashing the king, I am not trying to suggest anything other than the obvious when it comes to RPM. 4th tier team. So enjoy your final win, final win for Dodge and RPM. I am telling you that RPM will be a Toyota racing shop next year.

Which goes back to a post previously from this, Mr Kahne, you outran what could/should be your boss next year. Don't mind the fact that SHR is racing in the top twelve, they are having fun. If the conversations from the weekend prove true, SHR might be looking for the 3rd horse in the stable next year. The rumor mill circled Kasey, and another wild card, Kevin Harvick. Harvick becomes a free agent (driver) at the end of the year. Either way, either one, I would love to see in a SHR car. Mr Keslowski, keep looking.

Onto Kyle Petty:

Shut up. Shut up already about how you got screwed out of your ride, how you are a driver, and how sad this has all become. Seriously, your family kicked you out of the business. Ever heard of handwriting on the wall?
I love and respect you for your charity work. Everyone does. But you don't belong in a booth. Repeatedly making errors, opinions that weren't relevant. Please, put a tourniquet on it, stop the bleeding and get someone else in there. While we are on the subject, someone turn off Wally's mic too.

On the Jimmie Johnson turning of Kurt Busch:

I was shocked from how sorry Jimmie was. He came over the mic to Chad saying it was a mistake, a racing error blah blah blah. True it was, and sure crap happens, but this is racing. It was getting to the end and hey it happens.

Tony Stewart's 2nd place:

I am telling you now. Tony Stewart will win it all. He is consistent, he is achieving at a higher level than everyone else and he is keeping his head on. As a fan of his for many years, after the race I sit there in amazement with who I am listening to. So I am saying it, the 48 reign is over, all hail the 3 time cup champ Tony Stewart.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Unfortunately Tiger, your in a no win situation

The story on the eve of one of the greatest golfing tourneys in the world is not really if Tiger can win his 15th major. It doesn't center on Tiger and his rebuilt robo-knee. Its not about Tiger and the beast that is Bethpaige.

The story is Amy Mickleson. Amy was diagnosed with cancer recently, and in response Phil decided to stay at home. But then Phil made a return and today said that his wife would like to have a trophy in her hospital room while she takes on the mother load of all diseases.

Imagine that. Your wife basically calls you out. Um honey, help me pack my things, oh and by the way, this weekend, go win me that nice shiny trophy that you have never seemed to win before. I want it in my room while I am battling cancer.

Makes me have trouble swallowing, imagine Phil. I am not going to put Phil on the coals like I usually do. I'm not gonna talk about the nickname, or the sudden loss in swing.

I wish nothing but the best for him, and a clean bill of health for his wife Amy. Having lost my mother from this very same disease, I know, although not my wife, what they must be going through.

So if you are a fan of golf, if you are a remote control passerby this weekend and land on the coverage. Be prepared. This is going to play over and over. And rightfully so. Hopefully some serious money can be raised this weekend and send it to the Susan G Komen foundation and they in turn can fund more research.

So with that Mr. Woods, no matter what. The story will be the Mickleson's. Something tells me however, he wouldn't even mind.

So long story short. I root for Tiger. I root for others too, I rarely root for Phil. Given the situation, I will be pulling for lefty. And to me, if he doesn't win it all, but keeps it together enough to finish, I will forever be impressed with.

Good luck to you Phil, and good health to Amy.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Um, NO you dont have the credentials, you douche

Slammin Sammy = Slammin performance enhancing drugs into your system to make a name for yourself.

At least that's what it should be.
What's even better is this clown sat down earlier this month with a reporter saying that he's going to retire, and then "I will calmly wait for my induction to the Baseball Hall of Fame. Don't I have the numbers to be inducted?".

Then skip to today, and in, it's being reported that the great one popped positive in the very same tests that A-Roid took. Obviously, like A-Roid, these results were not supposed to be publicized.

Hey Sammy, do me a favor, hold your cheating breath. In fact, you, A-Roid, Bonds, and McGuire all sit in a circle and hold your breaths.

Your not getting in my friend, none of you will or should.

"I always played with love and responsibility and I assure you that I will not answer nor listen to rumors. If anything ugly comes up in the future, we will confront it immediately, but with all our strength because I will not allow anybody to tarnish what I did in the field,"
I want you to answer NOW. I want you to come out from behind your "I don't understand English" bull crap that you pulled when you were in front of our government. I want you to have the BALLS to confront it.

But, of course, you wont.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

How's that song go? Old man river?

I admit it. When the news broke I was like, seriously? Didn't this guy retire like 10 years ago? In fact, I was so sure of myself I called a couple of friends asking about wasn't he in a rocking chair doing a fair well tour? Isn't he starting to look like the dudes from Aerosmith?

But Mark Martin was signed to run the 5 this year (supposedly instead of Brad Keslowski). Mark would replace Kyle Busch and be paired with Alan Gustafson. He signed a 1 year deal, with a second option year.

And with enthusiasm and enjoyment, he has won. The latest today at Michigan.

You can say what you like, another fuel mileage race, or if Biffle and Johnson wouldn't have run out of gas they would have won. All true, but, if Kyle Busch didn't get passed late in the truck series and the nationwide, he would have won 2 races this weekend.

As hard as it is for me to get used to, I am coming to grips with it. Fuel mileage that is. If you are a 48 fan, or a 16 for that matter, there is nothing worse than seeing your car shake left and right trying to get that fuel into the pickup.

For the most part, the race was a snoozer. The 48 had the car to beat, the 24 was making an impressive run, and more impressively, we didn't have to be subjected to watching the 55 make doughnuts in pit lane! Oh Michael, enjoy next week off when freaking Patrick Carpentier drives your ride in Sonoma.

But back to what the story is, and was. Before the race, people interviewed said the it was the 5 and the 48 as favorites. In typical Martin fashion, he was there in the end. After a poor qualifying, he was there when it mattered most.

Now sitting 8th overall, 3 wins into the season, I am shocked. Congrats old man, your running well. Keep it up, your enthusiasm is refreshing.

Some other news and notes:

Rumor has it that there is a possibility Red Bull racing will be going to chevy's. Their contract with Toyota is up after this year. There is a link with the gazillionaire owner of red bull and HMS, don't be surprised.

Steven Wallace is looking for a run of 10 races next year in the sprint series under his dad's company.

Danica Patrick is rumored to have been talking contract with Chip Ganassi and NASCAR. 2 words. Bring it. Nothing like a side show. I want her to yell at Tony Stewart like she does on of those pretty IRL boys.

Johnny Benson was in a horrible wreck Saturday evening racing in Michigan. The problem was, it wasn't in the trucks. You know those Saturn commercials that say something about buying a car, losing your job sounds like a bad week? Imagine Johnny's. Dropped from his ride in the truck series on Monday due to sponsorship, Johnny ends up in a fiery wreck and breaking some ribs on Saturday night. Talk about having a bad week.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Come on Kasey, the writing is on the wall

The demise of the economy has taken countless victims. Need more examples than Red Horse Racing and Johnny Benson?

Now Richard Petty Motorsports has let go of employees for fear of reducing funds from Dodge.

Further, it has been noted that RPM has partnered with Braun Racing for races in the Nationwide. This would normally go as unnoticed as the lack of wins the 88 has, except for the fact that Braun is a Toyota based team.

Is this a sign? Is RPM switching to Toyota's?

Either way, there is the Kasey Kahne situation. Kahne is under contract with RPM through 2010. However, would you go down the slippery slope with RPM another year after potentially changing manufacturers.

Let alone the fact that they do not have the financial backing to run the r6p8 engine from Dodge. They ran it in Dover, but couldn't in Pocono. Kasey was competitive in Dover, and was a mere blip on the scoreboard in Pocono by starting 14th and finishing 15th without ever leading a lap.

ESPN is saying that RPM may not run the new package in Michigan.

So what is Kasey to do?

How about coming to the hottest team in NASCAR. Make a 3rd team, and run with what has to be the biggest surprise this year, Stewart Haas Racing.

The simple fact is, in NASCAR, the teams that have it will get results, the rest are merely just playing for 20th.

With rumors that Truex going to MWR to join his brother (slit wrists now), make a move for yourself Kasey. Make a move that will show that you are still a great driver, just sub par equipment.

I swear it was the poppy seeds on my muffin

Well well well.

The saga that is Jeremy Mayfield vs NASCAR has taken another twist.

ESPN is reporting that the drug that Mayfield has been suspended for was in fact methamphetamine.

Nothing says idiot like a jackhole who takes meth, and gets behind a 200 mph rocket.

For weeks Mayfield said it was a reaction to adderall, treating ADHD.

More so, I think legal action needs to be taken. There are 43 drivers out there in a race. Giving their life for a sport, and when an individual is impaired by drugs, they need to go away.

Enjoy your permanent black flag Mr Mayfield. At least now you have time to do more of that home brewin.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Sorry about that, I just woke up

So there I was, ready for the Monster Mile. Ready for a good hard race. Ready to watch drivers get angry, old grudges rear their head and people drive vehicles that look more like something that would look like the local wrecking yard.

What did we get?

Snoozefest. Again.

Don't misunderstand me, the finish with Stewart and Johnson was impressive. To a degree. 4 tires vs 2. Johnson sailed through the top 6, overtook the leader and sailed away.

Congrats to Johnson, another win and another impressive Sunday.

But even when the known temperamental Stewart got out, I was thinking, here we go, a little excitement! But NO! Credits go out to the team, to Johnson, talkin about how it was done for track position, nothin about, I HAD THE LEAD AND I'M PISSED.

Where oh where has the passion gone? I know that some will say that the France's, corporations, and owners have taken it away, but I miss it.

These shoebox's that they drive make for boring racing. They are basically sherman tanks, or even overgrown Pontiac Fiero's. I fully understand the reason that NASCAR went this route, but holy crap is this racing vanilla.

I am not experienced enough to say with an adjustment to the body here, or maybe changing that will open things up, and as much as this hurts to say, NASCAR is starting to look like the NBA. Meaning, it doesn't matter about anything that occurs after the first 2 minutes, all the way though until the last 5 laps.

More so, I want anger. I want passion. I don't want drivers getting out of their ride, grabbing what ever soda they have to pimp, thank all the drivers that raced them clean, and say something stupid like well we will go get em next week.

Come on Mr Ed errr Carl Edwards, go to Kevin Harvick's stall and cause some trouble. Shoot, even go after your own teammate like you did when you went nuts on Kenseth. Tony, you write the checks, go after someone, for the love of pete, someone do something.

Stop making this look like church. Stop making this look like Danica Patrick is a badass.

Friday, May 29, 2009

Oh calm down Jr nation, truth hurt?

Alright. So I expect some bad replies from this, but, I am still doing it.

The most average driver in NASCAR was called to the carpet today. "it's never Junior; it's always the crew chief" was said about Jr by Kyle Busch. The funny thing is, he's correct, for the most part.

So the nation (both Jr and NASCAR fans) are calling Kyle Busch out. At least someone is. Jr looked like a sad puppy at the press conference talking about how Kyle always has something out for him. WHAT? A lot like his driving, Jr went out soft. Are you going to tell me he took the high road? How about showing some heart? How about showing some anger? How about showing some emotion because a large part of you just got your family member fired? Why not go and drink some of those Amp energy drinks, act like you're angry and want to take on the world?

But no. Jr just limped along the press conference, whoa is me, feel bad for me.

Remember it was not too long ago that Jeff Gordon was called out because he "didn't want to win"? Eh hem.

You want to hate Kyle Busch because, he, um, competes? Wins? Says 2nd place stinks? Now don't get me wrong, I don't have any 18 gear, but he does drive for JGR who I support. I do respect the fact that at any given weekend he could be driving in 3 series, trying to win in all.

I read some of the postings from fans on, and on, and man, its a war. 18 this, 88 that.

Simple facts are, Jr under-performed, a lot of money is involved, and someone had to go. Just like in any other sport, in fact just ask the Colorado Rockies. Two years ago they were in the world series. Today, they fire the manager.

One thing is outrageously clear, Mr Earnhardt Jr, you have one more pass. When you do get your new crew chief, you might want to win. You don't have Eury Jr to deflect any more attention, its now all on you.

I suggest you show some heart.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

A "key role'' in HMS's research and development group

So the much anticipated firing of Tony Eury Jr came down this morning. Well, it really isn't a firing since he's going to be filling a "key role" in R&D. What in the hell is that? Is he going to do testing on which coffee works best in the break room? Or is he gonna be the guy that taste's the oils to find out which one taste more like chicken? For a guy that couldn't adjust a car right, this will be interesting .

Anywho, the trainwreck that was the "family" racing team is over. Eury Jr is being replaced by Brian Whitesell. Whitesell most recently was Brad Keselowski's crew chief at Darlington. Good luck with that Brian. Obviously, I don't think there is a job that is more pressure in NASCAR.

More than the firing of Eury Jr, Earnhardt finally has to fulfill what people expect of him, and that's to be an elite driver. Currently Jr is 19th in the standings, 7 positions out from the chase. It will be an uphill road if they can pull this off. Granted its early, but to make a switch like this, however necessary, is risky.

Hang on boys and girls, the saga that is Jr is only getting started

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Seriously Martin?

Rumors are swarming that Martin Truex Jr is on his way to Michael Waltrip Racing. Now I know what a whirlwind MWR is on, shoot, first win and all due to a rain out, but Martin, WHAT GIVES?

Granted he has been involved in a smoke and mirrors organization since coming to the big show, but why leave one train wreck for another? Ask Bobby Labonte, Mark Martin and others what its like to finally get it that you cannot turn an organization around, it takes many. Look at Stewart-Haas racing. Mired in what was a lower 20's, mid 30's owner points organization, Tony Stewart was brought in, wholesale changes were made, and presto.

Plus, why leave Bass Pro Shops for NAPA? That has to be as lame as what Clint Bowyer had to go through. Seriously, Jack Daniels to Hamburger Helper!

Friends of mine have discussed where he might end up, the third ride for Stewart-Haas, possibly the 4th car for JGR, but never in a million years would I think that it was to MWR.

If this is true, if Truex goes to MWR, that means Michael Waltrip's historic career is over. I think that all the drivers in the series will be thankful in a way, I mean, at least he wont do what he normally does and take out the field somewhere in the race!!

Monday, May 25, 2009

MLB this aint Houston, and you have a problem

Two games, two serious issues.

The first, on Sunday. The Milwaukee Brewers were playing the Minnesota Twins. In the 7th inning, Joe Mauer was hit by a pitch, however the umpire called it a foul ball. Mauer strutted down the line, only to be called back. The umpire was saying that he fouled the ball off, and not off the hand. The issue is not if he got hit or not, the issue is after saying it was foul, the manager for the Twins, Ron Gardenhire came out to argue. He went out, Mauer showed his hand, and somehow, the ump changed the call. Milwaukee's manager Ken Macha immediately came out and tried to get an explanation. However, the overturned decision stuck, and Macha quietly left the field. With bases loaded, the very next pitch, and I do mean very next pitch, Justin Morneau took it deep into the right field bleachers.

Second, tonight. During the Mets and and Nationals game, Gary Sheffield took John Lannan deep into left field. Except, under the new rules, the manager of the Nationals came out and said that a fan interfered with the ball, and that it wasn't in fact a home run. With this, the umpires are expected to come in and watch it on replay. The video on ESPN clearly shows the fan hitting it, it dropping down and should be called anything but a home run. To anyone who watched the replay/game, the ump's come out and call it a home run.

In two days, MLB got the best and worst from people that argue and argue against replay. What should have happened in the Minnesota game was the ump go into the, well, where ever they go, and look.

In the Mets game, obviously they need some high def. WHAT in the world were they watching?

Two games, two plays that changed the game. And the people that are in charge of enforcing the rules clearly screwed up. I know that the Minnesota play is not able to be replayed. But, if you are going to have replay, have replay. If it's contested, someone for god's sake look at it. And more so, look at it with a good TV that doesn't have rabbit ears and has some color to it.

In baseball where one play can change a game, anything should be looked at. For god's sake, its already a slow game, adding 5 minutes isn't going to kill anyone.

Also, shame on you Macha. You should have come unglued after the grand slam. You should have thrown bases, kicked chalk, shoot, even be like that minor league manager from last year that used the rosin bag as a grenade. To go back to the dugout, watch it go yard and do nothing is disappointing.

2 other things, Mr T as the 7th inning stretch singer? What, was everyone on the list of hopefuls busy? And lastly, oh to be a Ray's fan. Up 10-0 and lose? Ouch

Coca Cola 600 Recap and some notes about Indy 500

In what has to be a disappointing end, the weekend at Charlotte will better be known for rain than great racing that comes from Lowes.

The Nationwide race was shortened and after being delayed from Sunday night to Monday, we would find no difference in luck. Mother Nature had different plans for this weekend. But, some racing happened, and what was there was either really good for some, or a wreck for others.

Kyle Busch started the race and took off, which this and last season we have been very accostumed seeing. A few cars looked strong early, Vickers, Kahne, Stewart, Kyle Busch, and even Juan Pablo Montoya.

The race was stopped as more rain came, and then started and stopped and started and I cant remember how many times it happened. And finally a long red flag and inches more of rain led to a long, long stoppage.

One thing that did occur in the race, and it was something that I have never seen in any sporting event, which was at 3:00 pm the race stopped. In recognition of Memorial Day, NASCAR showed its respect by stopping the cars, getting the crews over the wall, and the track stood silent. I myself, was very moved. Tony Stewart called it the coolest thing he's ever been apart of. I as a fan was watching very proud of what NASCAR did.

The was decided unfortunately by the 00 car, David Reutimann not stopping along with others during a caution, and staying out. Before this, Kyle Busch was leading with a slew of cars behind him.

Michael Waltrip Racing was awarded on a rain shortened race. To me, it was reminiscent of Waltrips Daytona win. How fitting.

For a particular 2, the race could'nt have come sooner. Kevin Harvick started the race and promptly dented in his right front fender only to a couple laps later bury it into the wall. His race was over, and was it going to be a long day for the 29 crew. For that matter, all of RCR (Richard Childress Racing) were junk. To me, there is no greater disappointment overall than this team.

The most overrated driver in the series, Dale Jr, didnt have the luxury of saying he hit something. In fact, he missed everything. Every setup that his teammates ran seemed to work, but for NASCAR's dynamic duo, Eury Jr and Jr, they could'nt yet again figure it out. I don't know what it is with those two, I don't know if Jr can't explain what it is that's going on in his car, or if Eury Jr can't understand what is coming out of Jr's mouth, but whatever it is, this combo is still not working. I wouldnt look at today's race results and say Hendricks all missed it, because that's not what happened during the race. The 48,24, and 5 all were strong. Since 2000, Jr has won 18 races. In the last 3 years, he has won 3. For being the most popular driver, results obviously arent required.

During one of the stoppages, Stewart went to Reutimann and had a conversation about something that occured on the track. During the conversation, one of Reutimann's crew members decided to intervene. I know that Stewart can come off wrong, but to me, Reutimann's crew member should have been put in his place. It's between the drivers, not crew members. Stewart had what I thought was the last laugh in calling the member Billy Bad Butt, and Fox evening airing that when he was on TV, however in the end, the 00 got it with winning the race.

Just a couple things from the Indy 500.

I'm so tired of hearing about Danica Patrick and where she's going and everything else about her. Listen, she should not decide her next move is to NASCAR. This is not a sexist thing, this is reality. She has only driven in open wheel, NASCAR is a completely different beast, and like others before her, chances are, it wont work. I dont understand all the hype around her anyhow. She has won one race. In Japan. Other than a couple top 5's, thats it. She's more known about screaming at other driver's and telling them what they should do. I would love to see her try that with one of the NASCAR drivers. Plus, in the year of sponsorship problems, who on this earth is going to take a risk like this?

Stay where you are Ms Danica. You have a better chance there at winning a race then you ever will in NASCAR. God I hope that is the last of that.

So finally, a disappointing weekend is over, and its north to Dover next week. Let's hope for better weather and the 43 best drivers (OK not really 43) take on the Monster Mile.

Have a great week

Friday, May 22, 2009

OK ESPN, Here's a tip

Enough already. Enough of the developing stories regarding Mike Vick and how he went from the bedroom to the living room because one of the reporters that are camped out in his yard saw him do this.

Whats next?

This is ESPN with a developing story:

Mike Vick went down to his kitchen at 1:23 pm today and heated up one of those steak and cheese hot pockets, and after doing so, Mike spent the period of 1:55 to 2:08 on the pooper. ((Geese what do you expect after eating one of those things?))

It is being reported that he read "Dog World", this months "Animal Planet A Pit Bull special".


Holy Hindenburg Batman, where oh where has the offense gone?

I have heard it said before, and I do believe it, one of the hardest things to do in any sport is to hit a baseball.

But with 14 guys on the roster, you think that someone could do it. OK, that's not fair, I hear ya, but, again last night the Mariners were held scoreless thanks to Joe Saunders dazzling the Mariners at the plate with the white 9" in circumference, 5 oz with white with red stitching thing we call a baseball.

I guess we should be thankful that Beltre decided to take advantage of the tip that if you take that wood off your shoulder and swing it on a horizontal axis, sometimes it makes contact. With a 2 for 4 night, Beltre raised his staggering offense to a whopping .207 avg. If you didn't have a glove, the Wisconsin Timberrattlers would be looking to dump you.

Id like to give the award for hard effort of the night award to, um, judges, please, judges, the verdict, what do you mean there aren't any candidates?

Come on now, Bedard had a decent night, 5 ip, 2 er, his era is a respectful 2.64

And Morrow, shoot he threw 2 scoreless innings. Denny Stark threw one inning of scoreless innings late in the game also.

But the offense. Oh the offense. Ichiro got the hit fest off in the second inning, getting the party off with a single into left field. But somehow, the swiss cheese bats that the Mariners brought with them to the Safe would not be able to connect again until the 5th when Lopez singled to right, to be followed up with Betancourt also singling to right. Gutierrez powered up with a foul ball to 1st, then Ichiro hit into a fielders choice moving the 2 already on to third and second respectfully. AND THEN.....LOPEZ in his best Jacob Ellsbury and this was the new Yankee's stadium and stole home. Except the fact that Lopez forgot to take the Piano, Encyclopedia set and other various items that might slow down the speedy Lopez . What in the hell. Anywho, Lopez attempts a steal, I don't need to continue.

From the sixth on, 3 hits. 2 were Beltre. 1 Branyan. That's disgusting. Actually, when my daughter was young, she couldn't pronounce disgusting correctly, she would say, that was digusting, and the offense is digusting.

The good news is, the Giants of San Fransisco are coming to town. That's right boys and girls, the experiment that has run its course and should be put out to pasture is back. Interleague play. If there is something that is more done than this, please let me know.

The Big Unit, yes Randy Johnson is coming to town tonight. Unfortunately this is not the same Randy that we know, he's 3-4 with a 6.86 era. We counter with Vargas who is 1-0 and a 1.29 era.

Shoot, tonight should be Joey Cora "Tears in my eyes" bobblehead night.

Come on guys, remember the 7+ run games when we were hitting games? Remember that? Lets get it started, bring out that can, open it up and use it this weekend on the Giants.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

A sad demise for something with so much promise

This is not a bashing. This is not a husky/cougar thing. This is just a posting that on the AP states there is an indictment on Ryan Leaf for one count of burglary to a habitation, seven counts of obtaining a controlled substance by fraud and delivery of a simulated controlled substance.

There was an abrupt leaving from the Assistant Coach position he held at West Texas A&M. He was also the Head Coach of the golf team. Apparently Mr Leaf is in a rehab in British Columbia. It is not known if he has an attorney, and currently they (Randall County Prosecutors) are asking for Ryan to come back on his own accord rather than extradite him.

Like him, hate him, another sad story of someone that had an opportunity and struggled. Its been documented and laughed about enough, I am not throwing fuel on the fire, just writing about it because the fall is sad.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Puppy Chow's new spokesman

Has been sent home for confinement. I cant wait to hear where he will land. I have read that the leading candidates are the Bills and the (of course) Raiders.

Irregardless, yes I know he has paid his debt to society, yes I know he will hear it where ever he goes, but I will never root for this a-hole. He's lucky we don't live in the society of eye for an eye.

Friday, May 15, 2009

Thursday, May 14, 2009

I will take: Give me an F'ng break for $1000 Alex

For those of you that don't know it, that is the symbol for the North Dakota Fighting Sioux.
That symbol and the name has come under fire since 2005 when it was "deemed" "hostile and abusive" to American Indians.
The symbol and nickname was changed in the 1930's, a move to bolster the Universities name, which was named the Flickertails. Who in the hell would be proud to be a Flickertail?
The University and the Standing Rock and Spirit Lake Sioux tribes
have until Oct 1st to agree that the University can continue to use the name, or the name has to be removed by Aug 1 2010.
Sadly, the tribe said that the possibility of this happening is "remote".
If the University doesn't do this, they will be barred by the NCAA in post season play and other sanctions.
The University of Illinois is going through the same sanctions, and unfortunately have decided to change this too. The Washington Redskins fell under the same scrutiny.
I am sorry, but this is freaking ridiculous. The tribes think that the representation is disrespectful? I think that the fact that Universities have been put under the pressure from the NCAA is disrespectful. The fact that they have to change their name, the same very names they have used for decades is disrespectful. The board for North Dakota voted 8-0 to change it. Typical politicians.
I hope they go back to the Flickertails.
I hate this "politically correct" society that we live in that everything is touched with soft gloves and make everything nice.
So, North Dakota, you change the name, I say anyone that comes to your sporting event that is from the tribe has to pay double to pay for the costs of changing all the merchandising, posters, etc.
But that's just my nonpolitical correct opinion

Lets take a look at the Bedard trade

So here we sit, 14 days into the month of May and are we seeing what the Mariners truly are? Did we see what a team with a new Manager and energy can bring to the start of the season, and then reality set in? On the heels of getting swept by the first place Rangers, here are some ugly stats:

The Mariners have 2 wins and 11 losses for the month of may, heading into a long home stretch with the likes of Boston, and the Angels, only to get on a plane for 3 games at Oakland and 3 games at LA only to return to play a series with Baltimore. That is 22 days of games. 22 straight days, with a staff that is old, position players that are struggling, and sorry, but a lot of losses coming.

I was reading the story that Bedard is expected to miss his turn on the mound Saturday, and that got me to thinking. Honestly, yesterday watching replays of Adam Jones got me thinking, and before I go on, hind site is 20/20 and its easy to go this route, but I am going at it anywho.


32 127 35 47 12 1 8 26 10 25 3 2 .370

That would be the line of one Adam Jones who runs the outfield for the Baltimore Orioles

15 0 0 14.2 17 6 6 3 7 13 0 1 6 0 2 1.64 3.68

That would be the line for George Sherrill who was also part of the Bedard trade.

7 7 0 0 42.2 39 14 12 3 11 43 2 1 0 0 -- 1.17 2.53

That is Eric Bedard's line this year.

Adding both Sherrill's and Jones's salaries it is $3,185,000.00.

Eric Bedard's salary is $7,750,000.00

Adam Jones currently is third in the league in BA, 1st in Runs, 3rd in slugging percentage, 13th in HR, 5th in OBP, and 4th in OPS.

Franklin Gutierrez who is roaming the center green for the Mariner's makes $20,000.00 more a year than Jones. I know that that will change shortly for Jones, but it is important.

Gutierrez's line looks like this:

32 103 15 26 3 0 3 13 13 23 1 2 . .252

The only thing that is close is that Gutierrez is close on Caught Stealing and leads by 3 in walks.

Face it, another horrible trade on the Mariners. Another sell the farm to get a hopeful that isn't working out. Adam Jones will be in the league for years to come, and unfortunately, for us, we will be watching him making spectacular plays in center field, reminiscent of the guy we brought back for one year.

Sadly, Jones's numbers beat all the Mariners in offensive production alone.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Inflamation of the Shoulder? More like ERA

That's it, Wak has seen enough. The train wreck that is Carlos Silva is getting a much deserved....errrr.....needed break. Shutting down the powerhouse that is Silva is a risky move no doubt. By putting your offense on notice that they will not need to score more than 8.48 runs tonight, the offense might take the night off. Wak is definitely a gambler.

In a career that has more losses than wins, I thought that I might post this tool's career standings for your viewing pleasure. In fact, next time you are up for a job review, go into it with these kinda stats and attempt to get a pay raise let alone keep your job.

w l w% era g gs gf cg ip hits
60 64 .484 4.71 293 159 38 6 1127.0 1373

runs er hr bb ibb so
630 590 142 212 23 474

No doubt not only does this move put more pressure on the staff, they are replacing him with Vargas, but can you imagine the pressure the Team Chef is under now? Shoot, at least he had a break on game day when Carlos was forced to go out to the field, now Carlos can wander the buffet table with reckless abandon. Oh the pressure.....

Monday, May 11, 2009


A purple warning track? Really?

Recap of the Sounders debacle

Alright, I will give it to you, I agree. Soccer has a terrible problem. What transpired on the pitch yesterday was embarrassing to watch. Infact, it was hard to watch. There should have been academy awards handed out yesterday after the game. I will list the candidates:

Award for: "Best Impersonation of a Ref" goes to Tim Weyland. Apparently Tim had retired from being a ref, and unfortunately for the Sounder faithful, he came out of retirement and showed what happens when you lose control of a game that is full of emotions, and show zero consistency in the way you call the game.

Award for: "Help me I've fallen" goes to the Galaxies Donovan Ricketts. Between the falling down episodes and looking like he had concocted the swine flu, this guy should have been carded repeatedly. The worst was the closing minutes and he falls down due to the pull of the earths orbital pull.

Award for: "I'll Show You" goes to, sorry Seattle fans, Sigi. After the match was final, Freddie went after the refs who were walking off the pitch. Sigi decided to, at a distance, share his thoughts of the events. It looked silly. It looked desperate. I'm not saying he should have done it during the game, obviously not, it could have potentially hurt the team even worse. I get that. You have a forum, its called the press conference, use that instead.

Award for: "Let's fight like this is the NBA" goes to all the players involved in the incident that eventually sent Riley off. It looked like for a second that an NBA fight broke out, you know, like a bunch of swinging like they dont know what they are doing! Then pushing, obviously comments about the mothers (I know, even on mothers day), and then the eventual apology, pat on the back and lets play.

Award for: "Best actor in a missing plot" goes to David Beckham. The torture is over, the Beckham tragedy has been settled, and we didnt have to put up with it. Beckham wants to take his ball and play in Italy, in preparation for the World Cup. I dont pretend to think that the MLS is equal to say Serie A, I just hated when that tool showed his face with his stuck up wife like he was sent here to save the league. My wife will definetly disagree with this.

It was a game that got lost. Emotions, anger and testosterone hindered any kind of flow that might have developed in between the inconsistency of the ref's whistle. I hate the diving, I hate the noncalls from diving. It was another game that Seattle lost another player due to a red card. They have to stop doing this to themselves, this is a recipe for one point games and not closing the gap with Chivas.

On a great day that is Mothers Day, this game left a bad taste in atleast my mouth.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Baseball and its Performance Enhancing Drug problem

So the infamous Manny Ramirez of the LA Dodgers today has been banned 50 games by MLB for testing positive for using the female fertility drug human chorionic gonadotropin, or hCG, which is considered a performance enhancing drug. Manny of course is blaming the doctor that prescribed it. The drug is designed to restart the bodies natural testosterone levels.

Alex Sanchez Jorge Piedra A. Montero Jamal Strong Juan Rincon R. Betancourt R. Palmeiro
Ryan Franklin Mike Morse C. Almanzar Felix Heredia Matt Lawton Yusaku Iriki Jason Grimsley Guillermo Mota Juan Salas Neifi Perez Neifi Perez Mike Cameron Dan Serafini Jay Gibbons Jose Guillen Eliezer Alfonzo Henry Owens J.C. Romero Sergio Mitre Manny Ramirez Damian Moss Robert Machado Clay Hensley Brian Mallette Jon Nunnally Tom Evans Grant Roberts Darnell McDonald Steven Smyth Christian Parker Luis Ugueto
Wilson Delgado Luis Ugueto Nerio Rodriguez Abraham Nunez Yamid Haad Henry Owens
Sergio Mitre

That is the list of players that since 2005 have also tested positive for steroids. That isnt including players that played before this. Granted ARod would be added if he would have "officially" been tested. But eventually the press finally found it and he in time copped to it. Roger Clemens is sweating bullets as the days pass. Barry Bonds walks freely still today.

Has the congressional intervention with baseball worked? Has it deterred the player from cheating? 44 players since 2005 have tested positive. Many of these players were positive in 2005, but it shows that even since its inception, players are still trying to get around the system.

I think the testing has worked. If you look at the amount of players that play for a MLB team, and throw in the minor leagues, the number of players vs the one's cheating, the numbers are small.

The saying a few bad apples holds true here. You can hope to police everyone, but there will always be individuals that feel the need to cheat to get ahead.

Which is worse? Is the Chicago White Sox of 1920 with "Shoeless" Joe and his gang of 8, or Pete Rose and his betting worse for the integrity and game or is one individual such as Manny injecting/swallowing steroids worse?

One good thing that has come of this is Mark McGwire, although never testing positive, only received 22% of the required votes to get into the Hall of Fame. A message clearly sent by the voters that steroids will not be accepted there.

The sad thing is, in July when the suspension is lifted, Manny's 2 month vacation will be over, he will step on the field and play again.

Instead of a 3 strike policy, it should be one and done. Guilty and you are finished. If it is something that isn't true, then in the court system, you have your venue to prove your innocence. Sadly though, the selfish individuals that cheat, that "received it through their cousins", or the doctor prescribed it, will never be brought to light.

Thursday, April 30, 2009

There's no other way to look at it but as a success

It is being reported that the Hawks have signed Leroy Hill to a 6 year deal. Keeping the linebacking corp intact, with Tatupu and now Curry. I personally look at the offseason as a success. How cant you. Added 2 lineman, a hard hitting corner, top notch receiver, and drafted the best athelete in the draft. Not to mention gaining another first round pick next year. Kudos go out to the front office.
Nicely done Hawks. Now there's just one thing to do, go out and crack some heads

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

See boys and girls, this is what happens

When you have the world at your fingertips, decide that everything else is more important than your craft, and spend months destroying it.

Yes, he's back. Sponsorless, an frankly, it shows.

Good god someone get that man a tailor

If I had it my way (just some thoughts)..........

If I had the sports world my way:

The words "Mike Vick" would not be brought up in conversation or topics again

The NBA would go away. Ok, how bout they introduce the 2 minute penalty like in hockey instead of 5 fouls, and there is a 2 for sissy fouls. I want a MMA fight to break out between Yao Ming and Tim Duncan. That would be money.

Someone would shove Sean Avery's dome through the boards and he wouldn't be allowed to play anymore.

The Detroit Red Wings would suffer the same fate as the rest of the auto industry in Michigan and fold.

The NHL would introduce cheerleaders with NFL type uni's on the ice, if you catch my drift

Did I mention the NBA would go away?

Seattle would host a Superbowl, and it would rain like a mofo.

I wouldn't hear things like, a major league baseball player can't play a night/day game, or a double header. They need to rest. WTF.

MLB would have a salary cap, not this thing they call a salary cap. Forcing equality throughout the league and Alex Rodriguez would find himself in Kansas City.

ESPN the Magazine would concentrate on sports, not lame stories.

In fact

ESPN would stop showing the following (these are not sports):

Whatever basketball game is being played when the players have nicknames and there is an m.c. Bowling
Around the Horn (This is a stupid show)

When two drivers in Nascar feud, they get called to the trailer, but the trailers' a cage match

I dont know, maybe its the lack of sun, that's just what I was thinking this morning.

I'm just sayin

Monday, April 27, 2009

Weekend wrap up

So lets do a quick recap:
The AL West leading Mariners played a 3 game set at Anaheim. Surprisingly, the Mariners took 2 out of 3 and would you have believed it that Silva won and Washburn lost? That was exactly what happened. Washburn on Sunday struggled with control and only going 5 innings, giving up 6 runs.

Silva continued his confusing run Saturday with a 5 inning, 3 earned run outing, taking the win. The bullpen this weekend did not hold up that well. In Silva's game, the bullpen gave up 5 earned runs and almost the game, while on Sunday, they gave 3.

Most importantly however, the Mariners continued to stay in front and so far have a 12-7 record.
I do have to do this however. Hi Mr Griffey and Mr Beltre, I would like to introduce you both to this thing we call a Louisville Slugger. See ball, hit ball. In that order. $15.4 million dollars for 2 players hitting under .200. And trust me, Silva saved me from a rant.

The Seahawks had the NFL draft, and selected Aaron Curry. I love this pick, I wanted this pick, but to find out that it came with the expense of losing Hill by pulling the franchise tag, hurts. The drafting of Unger from Oregon was masterful. Unger is a lineman that can play any position, however, likely will be used as the next center for the team.

I do like the pick of the Penn State Deon Butler, and think that the drafting of Rutgers QB Mike Teel has some upside.

I think the greatest coup of the draft and something that is not talked about, is the highway robbery we committed on Denver by giving this years second round draft pick for Denver's first round next year. To those of you that might not like it, WHY NOT? Any time you can get a 2 for a 1, come on. And, most importantly, should be where your next QB should be coming from.

Overall, I give the Hawks, a "B" on the draft. All is not lost, heck, you could be a Raiders fan this morning waking up with a bad draft hangover asking, what just happened? The Oakland Raiders again showed why they are the most ass backwards franchise in the league.

My Flyers showed why you have to put all sharp objects away when it comes to April and being a Flyers fan. Again losing in the first round, this time to the Pens.
Nascar went to Talladega and the big one started early in the 8th lap. Kenseth and Gordon getting together ending the hopes of many. Only to be outdone by Keselowski dumping Edwards in the trioval. I didn't know horses could fly! What? I'm just sayin.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Welcome to the Hawks Mr Curry

Wow, this couldnt have played out any better to me than what happened this afternoon. I have written on earlier posts that I hoped that Curry would somehow slip, that we would not go after Sanchez, and to my delight it played out correctly.

Look, I am not saying that Sanchez isn't going to be, or isn't a great QB. What I am saying is our QB is healthy, they shut him down last year to do this. This pick is going to come in and make an immediate difference, make an impact on the field right now.

I love this.

Oh, and nicely done Raiders. No wonder they are in the toilet bowl, picking Bey? Are you serious?

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Ummm, well, we all have one of those days/nights

After giving up 15 hits, 9 runs, 2 errors, the Mariners only scoring 3 runs, 4 total hits by only 3 batters and seeing the team batting average dip again to .246, lets just hope it was one of those days.

Area's of concern:

Mike Sweeney's back. Although reports today are it is not bad

Jr. Umm, love you, but, is it time to get out of the 3 hole? .171 as a 3 hole hitter isnt a recipe for offensive success.

Beltre batting .172, umm where's Tui? Let alone his back to back errors late in the game last night.

Only 4 batters hitting .300 or better on the team, and one of them is Balentien who has 13 AB's.

Again, let's just hope this was one of those nights. King Felix is on the mound tonight, hopefully he can go some innings and keep them in it while the Mariner's look for their offense.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Who in the world stole Jarrod Washburn and replaced him with this guy?

5-14. 4.69 ERA. 87 Strikeouts.

That was the totals from the 2008 season for Jarrod Washington.

3-0. 1.71 ERA. 17 Strikeouts.

So far, that is his line this season.

Jarrod has already thrown 20% of his strikeouts from 2008. He has already won 60% of his wins from last year.

I don't know who abducted him, don't care as of this morning, in fact, don't bring him back. I like this guy. Jarrod threw another gem last night giving the Mariner's a solid effort and pitching another 7 innings last night. The offense (OK, Sweeney and Bentancourt) came back last night scoring 4 and giving up only 2.

Now if someone could do something with Silva...............

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Alrighty, here it is, the Seahawks draft question

So we are 4 days away from what could be a very interesting day for the Seahawks and the NFL draft. I've read the blogs, the "experts", and the mock drafts. A couple things are for sure as we get ready for the draft:

1. Detroit again has the #1 pick

2. Seattle is in a interesting predicament.

3. Nobody really knows what is going to happen.

In regards to Seattle, if for some reason Seattle finds itself in a position that Curry, Monroe, Crabtree, and Sanchez are available, I still think the answer is easy.

Curry is the fit for the Hawks. I don't expect that we will see Monroe, and as nice as having Crabtree as another option for Hasslebeck, I don't see them going for a wide receiver.

Curry can make a difference now. He can physically fit in with this core of linebackers and make immediate gains. I think that is what is most important to the Hawks.

Personally, I think the Hawks did the right thing last year in shutting down Matt. We were going nowhere, the offensive line was banged up something fierce, and allowing him to get healthy and come back this year ready to go was a bold, but right decision.

I know the offensive line is getting old, but they too were put on ice for the better part of the year, allowing to get healthy.

Further, if it does fail, and the Seahawks struggle, I personally think that next years crop of QB's far out way this years.

Another huge area of concern is getting a running back. This could be done in the second or third round, but I don't like the options at running back.

I just hope they don't go QB on the first pick. What do you think? What do you see the Hawks doing?

Monday, April 20, 2009

I'd like to address some of the other sports


Its playoff Hockey time. There is few better playoff's than the NHL. I am a Philly Flyer fan, and after almost jumping off the roof of my house due to a lackluster game 1, and then blowing it in game 2, the boys came out like someone peed in their cheerios and finally took it to the Pens. I cannot stand Sidney Crosby. And with that, every time he was on the ice, one of my Flyers were trying to put him on his butt. Game 3 started off as physical as any I have seen. The Flyers ultimately put a smile on my face, winning 6-3, getting back into the series and now only trail the hated Pens by one. Tonight, my pick to raise Lord Stanley's cup, the Bruins, look to go up 3-0 against the Habs. Boston just flat out looks better. If your a hockey fan, your thinking, what about the Detroit freaking Redwings. That team, in my house, is not allowed to be discussed. They are to me like the New York Yankees, Rangers, Michigan Wolverines and others. The mere thought of them makes me ill. Some that know me that after I was born in Philly, we moved to Chicago, and then finally the NW. So, naturally my second favorite team is the Blackhawks, and after a long drought, made it back with youth and hard work. Back to D'troit, the sight of Chris Chelios skating for them makes me contemplate eating peanuts right now. That move, granted years ago, would be like Luke Skywalker joining the dark side. Unthinkable. But he did, and quickly became part of public enemy number one.

Is there no bigger loser in hockey than Sean Avery? GOD I can't stand him. Let alone the putrid organization he plays for.

The Canucks are 3-0 over St Louis, and looking good. Those who are not:

Washington. Seriously, one time, just do something worthwhile

San Jose. Age, Age, Age. Man they look HORRIBLE.


Those that know me, know I am a die hard Stewart fan. Tony Stewart switched from JGR to a team he now partially owns. In the build up to this year, I didn't know what to expect. Granted he's running everything Hendrick (The Darkside of Nascar) ((shut up Dave)), few have been able to pull it off. Tony has never been a media darling, a buffet darling maybe, but no media. He is known to speak his mind, hit cameraman, talk smack about Goodyear, and win races. Although he has not won yet this year in 8 starts, Tony has 3 top 5's and 6 top 10's. As a 2 time Champ, he is the greatest driver in NASCAR (shut up Dave)

What in the world is going on with RCR? A 15th, 20th, 26th, and 30th place showing at Phoenix? Overall, Clint Bowyer is 6th, Jeff Burton is 11th, Kevin Harvick is 16th, and making another strong showing is Casey Mears. My friends have heard this before, I thought drivers like Casey, Kasey Kahne, Elliot Sadler, and Jamie McMurray were victims of bad teams. But Casey, and McMurray have proved me wrong. Strong teams, bad results. And don't even get me started about the most overrated driver in Nascar, Dale Earnhardt Jr.

What I am sad to see about Nascar is how vanilla this sport has become. Everyone drives around till the last couple, begging not to mix it up and keep the car clean, and just like the NBA and it only counting in the last 3 minutes, the drivers don't heat it up until the end. Being a long time fan, this is disappointing. I think it really came to a headway when Denny Hamlin was leading the race, only to give it up late at Martinsville and acting like it was no big deal. NO BIG DEAL? I thought the point in racing was to stand up there with that big cardboard check, the hottie Nextel girls standing around not knowing what sport they are even at, talking about I won. As much of a fan I became of the chase, this has also made the race boring to watch. Bristol and Martinsville used to be one of my favorite races. Grudges were held until then, and in payback fashion, taken out there. Kyle Busch should have derailed the 88. He should have made his car look like something that came out of a wrecking yard. But no. Some might say that if Sr.was still here, things would be different. Who knows, the France's have taken this sport to the ultimate in paydays and publicity, but have also to a degree made chess more combative.

Third and finally, it is clear that Chuck Lidell simply needs to retire. A poor outing, an old crusty vet who has seen his run in MMA pass him by. In his day, he was simply amazing, and now is becoming punch drunk and honestly boring.

Mariners update and a little something about my FAVORITE Mariner

All was good. It really was. A 2-2 won/loss record to start the season against Minnesota, went on the road to Oakland and swept them, only to come home and win 3 out of 4 against the perennial division winner Anaheim. We were rolling, the Detroit Tigers were coming in for some more of our crafty pitching, timely hitting. But on a Thursday night, the Angels stymied the offense for a win with a 5-1 outing. Ryan Rowland-Smith was hurt and Jakubauskas was called into duty. The offense was quite, but the Angels pitching was short of masterful.

Friday brought in the Tigers, and with a win of 6-3 all seemed to have been fixed. Another game with 5+ runs, the pitching holding the Tigers to 3 runs. Just what the doctor ordered. All wasn't perfect, Garcia did not look good, and if you recall Verlander had a no-no going into the 4th. But, as this short season has shown us, the Mariners didn't give up and battled hard. Saturday and Sunday, however, were welcomed with mixed results. Although on Saturday the Mariners lost, Bedard again pitched a brilliant game, commanding his pitches and not really getting into trouble, only to be out done by a rookie Edwin Jackson.

Sunday, my boy Silva was back on the mound. You see, the stock market is more stable than Carlos. Carlos put in a "solid" effort, going 5 innings, giving up 4 earned runs, one walk and unbelievably, no strike outs. So Carlos has started the year, 0-2, 6.35 era and 6 strikeouts. The fabulous one has run his brilliant Mariners career to a commanding 4-17 record. That's right boys and girls 4-17. If you want to look at it a different way, he wins on a clip of 24%.


Carlos Silva made $7,000,000.00. This year, boy wonder is slated to make a sickening $11,000,000.00.

So, by simple math, last year, Carlos pulled in $45,751.63 an INNING. What's worse, is if you project his outings vs salary this year, it balloons to $71,895,42. An increase of $26,143.79. This is highway robbery. Now I know some of you are saying, that is a product of the old regime, and you are correct, but what is the purpose of continuing to run out a stiff that produces mixed results at best and cant be counted on. Is our minor league system that thin that we cant do something else? Can we not package one of our 57 catchers (preferably Clement) and package Silva and some Little Debbie's Cosmic Brownies? Shoot, we're in Seattle, if needed to seal the deal, we could turn those suckers into Magical Cosmic Brownies without any trouble.

Its been determined that Clement is not the catcher of the future. It was said they need to find another position for him, since, one of the better snowjobs that has ever occurred in the Mariners organization, Kenji Johjima somehow was given a three year extension. Although Clement is off to a slow start this year, he was the AAA player of the year for the Rainiers, finishing the season with a .337 ba. He has solid power numbers, 17 doubles, 14 homers and 43 RBI in 47 games with Tacoma. I dont want to lose him, but, to get some youth, get rid of Carlos, I'm for it.
I'm not saying that all is wrong in MarinerLand. The season is long and there are bumps in the road. But the organization has said there is a retooling happening, I am just giving my Monday morning help. I'm just sayin

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

I am not drinking the kool aid, but, I am getting thirsty

So as the boys of summer take the field tonight for the second game against many who believe will be the ultimate winners of the AL West, I have some interesting points for you. Again, I understand its 8 games into a 162 game year. I understand that its just roughly 5% of the season. But last night, again, the Mariners fought. They fought for 10 innings. Carlos Silva looked like he actually wanted to pitch and was going to give some effort. The crowd packed the house, of course to see the return of the prodigal son Jr. +/- 49,ooo fans made Safeco look like Safeco of the good years.

Jr. was limited to the DH role due to a stiff back, but managed to come through with a 1-3 performance, and with the amount of pressure he was facing, I will take it. Endy Chavez continues his torid pace by going 2 for 4, hitting .394 so far for the season. Again, Carlos Silva pitched very well. He went 7 innings, allowing 2 earned runs, striking out 4. Aardsma, Morrow, and finally Corcoran coming in for the win. This by far was one of the best outings for Silva, and also was very timely.

Tonight, Jarrod Washburn will face Jered Weaver. Both are 1-0, both are sporting a 0.00 era, a below 1 WHIP. Let's hope the pitching can continue. Ichiro returns from his first stint on the DL as a MLB player. We will see where he is at. Does this drop Chavez to #2 in the offense?

The following are some stats that stick out to me: power rankings list the Mariners as #5

Seattle is #2 with a 2.76 team era

Seattle is tied for 2nd with LA Dodgers in Runs Scored against with 24, the leader Pittsburgh has only given up 23

Seattle is 19th with a .253 BA

Seattle has a .990 fielding percentage

Endy Chavez is tied for 8th in the American League for batting average, 6th in the American League for hits.

Russell Branyan is tied for 12th in the American League for Home Runs

Endy Chavez is tied for 3rd in the American League with 3 stolen bases, with 0 CS

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Sounder Montero will not face charges

Freddy Montero hopefully has learned an important lesson in becoming a professional athlete. In this climate that we find ourselves, unlike the times of the past, professional athletes are not bulletproof. I have read the stories, I read the claim, and honestly I don't know everything. I can stipulate, boy meets girl, boy tells girl who he is, girl becomes enamored and who knows. It has happened, I am not saying the girl made it up, I'm simply stating Montero has a second chance. Hopefully the veterans of this team will surround him and show him the lessons that athlete's face. Hell, the NFL has education courses for these types of things for their rookies, I would bet MLB and the NHL does the same. The NBA, facing moral issues you know does this. Athlete's are not invincible. Look at the latest examples, Burress, Whitner from the Jets, Vick, hell the list could go on and on. They simply don't run the town, are above the law anymore. Is this wrong, heck no, is it correctable? Who knows. These kids that are groomed, coached, and shown that with hard work, the potential career at hand is full of dollars and glory. What little is done, is taking care of the same athlete when they are off the field, court wherever. Need an example?

How about Marcus Vick. His brother Mike was playing for the Falcons, making millions of millions of dollars, he was the heir apparent to the QB position in the same very place his brother made himself a star, and he simply could not figure it out. In 2004 he was suspended from Virginia Tech the entire year due to 2 criminal convictions. The next year, he was brought back with conditions, which was without incidents. In 2006, Vick was released from the school because of what the school said was "due to a cumulative effect of legal infractions and unsportsmanlike play". Marcus was forced to go into the draft, ultimately going undrafted and lasting into 2007, finally being released and never to be picked up again. His brother, Mike, needs no introductions, or time spent on his story.

In these economic times, people are losing jobs, houses, sanity and everything else. Yet, the pro athlete still makes headlines with million dollar contracts, and endorsements. To some, they become targets. They go out on the town, flaunting their riches, getting in trouble with fighting etc, and some meet women that don't care about them, but their bank accounts.

I do not blame the athlete for making the money, hell, if I could I would too. I am not trying to make this a negative story, I am just hoping for Montero's sake, a kid with massive talent, he will adjust, if needed, his thinking. Montero's career is just beginning, if he performs the rest of the season like he has the beginning, he could very well be playing on a higher level in Europe. I just want to see the talent on the field, and not the police blotter.

This of course is not everyone. There are great examples, Manning, Hasselbeck, Jones, Keller, and Edgar. Maybe in college, ethics courses should be taught to the athletes. I don't know what the answer is. I don't believe I have it, other than surround yourselves with the right people, for parents to teach the athletes morals and give them the right upbringing.

What I do know is it's disappointing when young athletes throw everything away because they think they are above the law. They lose the opportunity to perform on the world's biggest stages with the talents that God graced them with.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Here's a question for you

So as my family gathered round for a great Easter dinner, one of the greatest Master's tournament played out in front of us. A little background, I do "play" golf, and I respect and admire what those that play on a professional level do. To handle the pressure, to handle the crowd, to control your swing, hell, I can't do that on a weekend at Hawke's Prarie with 3 of my friends. Shutup Dave. I am not in their stratosphere, heck, I'm not in the same solar system as them when it comes to golf. You see, I grew up and golf is what sissy's did. Golf was not cool, golf was never even brought up. As I grew, I played a couple rounds here and there, and then came a cat called "Tiger". I would contest that there has been fewer athletes other than Michael Jordan that came along and grew their sport as Tiger has done to the sport of golf. So I play, if you want to call it that, and have a great time doing it. I have a brother that earlier in life realized much more than I that the Mariner's were in fact not going to call and picked up his clubs and started playing. To go out and play with someone of his caliber is mesmerizing. He is not a pro, but he is amazing to watch. Many times I have watched the swing or play and thought, am I watching T.V.? Am I supposed to do that? See, I can bang it. I can drive it with the best of them, 5 out of 10 times. Watching golf on T.V. to some might not be the most thrilling couple of hours spent, to me, I enjoy it. Hell, I even watch when Tiger is not in contention. Somehow I became enough of a fan that I have become fans of the like of Tiger, Kim, Ogilvy, Harrington, Scott and yes even Boo Weekley. Along with favorites I even found golfers I don't like, Mickleson, Garcia, Westwood, and Colin Montgomerie.

My reason for saying that was at this get together, my other brother proposed a question. Kenny Perry was staring a +/- 150 yard shot onto the green, sink the put and get the tailor ready. Kenny was about to hit, my younger brother was discussing the pressure that Perry was under, and my older brother said, "What do you think is tougher, sinking a free throw, or making that shot?"

WHAT? I thought. Are you kidding me? A free throw or a shot to hold the green in front of the same amount of crowd. Seriously? Now, a quick background, my older brother has never I think played golf, although has shot many free throws on his sport court. My younger brother has done both, excelling more on the course than the court. Sorry little brother.

After my initial thought, which was that the golf shot is much more complicated than a free throw could ever be, I started thinking. What is harder? That got me thinking. On the car ride home, I was talking with my wife and she said, I think you have a great question to ask. In thinking about this question I thought I needed to add a sport. But Baseball is not the same, Hockey and Soccer is not the same. But wait, how about kicking a winning field goal in a football game like Super Bowl XXXVI similar to Adam Vinatieri did to beat the Rams.

So here is my question. What is tougher, taking a free throw, to win the NBA Championship, a field goal to win the Superbowl, or 150 yards out, not taking in consideration the putt, knocking onto the green on 18 at Augusta?

I must say, in thinking about it, there are more additional hazards in golf than the other two. Both basketball and football play on level surfaces, in golf with that shot, the ball could be above or below your feet. In basketball, your indoors and weather is controlled. In football, its either in a dome or scheduled for the best possible place to play a game. Golf, its what mother nature and the cruel and unusual punishment that the course designer concocted.

But what do you think? What is your opinion? For me, given all that comes into play, the weather, the course and the mechanics, it really goes to the golfer. And in conclusion, Mr Perry duffed the shot, sending it left and shooting for bogey. This pushed it to a 3 way sudden death playoff, which again he had a chance, but on the 2nd playoff hole hooked it left. He had an almost impossible putt to make to push it for a 3rd playoff hole, ultimately coming up second and missing the infamous green jacket.

Irregardless of the opinions, the Master's played out in what could only be described as a 12 round heavy weight bout. Tiger and Mickleson made late runs, only to come up short. Cabrera, Chambers and Perry were left to duke it out, and eventually the Cabrera that used to smoke on the track and the camera's hid it, powered through.

I have had many get together's with my family, and at one point, one of the wives thought, hmm who would have guessed they would all be around the T.V. watching golf. And if this was 15 years ago, I would have agreed.

Happy Easter to all

Wait a minute, maybe its not so bad afterall

Remember it was only a couple months ago that the nation was making fun of Seattle? The Sonics had moved to Oklahoma City and changed their name to the Thunder, the Mariners finished another stellar season with more than 100 losses, the Seahawks won just 3 games and lost their leader Mike Holmgren to greener pastures, the Huskies did the unthinkable with an 0'fer season in football, with the Cougs not doing much better? We were the laughing stock of the nation. In fact, ESPN even wrote a story about how dreadful it was to be a Seattle fan.

And then something happened, the proverbial switch was turned on, and no one is talking about it.

Lorenzo Romar had the boys of the hardwood playing hard and winning, and his counterpart east of the mountains was doing much of the same with lesser named players. A couple months into the season in the Pac 10 tourney, the Huskies did what some didn't think possible and won the whole thing. The Cougs did not qualify for the NCAA's, but played in the NIT. The Huskies made a run in the NCAA Tourney, eventually losing to Purdue by 2 in a much contested game.

Seattle gave birth to a new team in the Sounders, who to much avail ran the first three games without giving up a goal. The fans came out in droves, faces painted, scarves were waving, voices loud, and they sang proudly. New city hero's were found, Montero, Keller, Alonso, Ljundburg, and Sigi. The fans in this town created a fever, blue and green being worn, people talking, and most importantly pride. The face of the organization, Drew Carey, marched proudly with the fans on the streets of Seattle showing the city and the state the Sounders have arrived. And I haven't even talked about the on field product. This team, and I do mean team, played in sync like they have been together for years. The went to Argentina on a couple week trip, Sigi obviously used the time to bring this team together and show them his way. It stuck, they listened and it has shown. They play solid team soccer, even when losing their captain, their leader last night, only giving up one goal, the first goal of the season, the stuck together.

Who would have thought that the Mariners manager would be a guy named Wakamatsu? The boys of summer arrived, names missing like Putz and Ibanez, and so far the chemistry has taken shape. Clutch hitting, for the most part solid defense, and clutch bullpen work. Our boys in blue are projected to fill the bottom slot of the AL West, and maybe they might, but at least this product, given the fact that its the first week of the season, fight for 9 innings. Look at the stats, heck, look at last night, 5 runs in the 8th. I don't know if the Mariners of the past 5 years would stay in it, or even battle for it. I would be a liar if I didn't say that I too believe they will struggle, I think some names need to go, starting with Ichiro and rebuild, but I have watched, and even with a cynical eye, I must say, so far I am impressed.

So all is not dreary in the land of the rain. Much like spring, the sports teams in this town are starting to blossom, some for the first time, some possibly like the times of 1991. Unlike the economy, we have something to rejoice in, and even for just a couple hours, not having to worry about the economy, our jobs, our government, they give us hope. So rejoice Seattle fans, heads up, be proud, all is not gloom.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

You cant win them all

The Sounders squared off tonight against Kansas City Wizards at Qwest this evening. The house was rocking with more than 28,000 fans making the home team feel welcome. The Sounders came into the match 3-0, riding a shutout streak, and all was going smoothly. The attacking was there, the two Freddy's were on the pitch for the first time together all year when the unthinkable happened. A breakaway by the Wizards happened in the 29th minute and Kasey came out to challenge, except Kasey was out of the box and hit the ball with his hands. Keller tried to play it off as the ball hit his body, but in review, it was obvious, he hit it with his left arm. The red card came out, Kasey went off, Dragavon in, and Le Toux out.

The Sounders were forced to play with 9 on the field the remaining 60 minutes. The game progressed with many fouls, and alot of cards, and the Sounders finally succombed to the pressure with a hard strike, 25+ yards out Arnaud struck a screamer that Dragavon got his hands on but it was too much and deflected into the net.

The problem with the red card is, Seattle doesnt have another goalie on staff. Dragavon is not under contract, so Seattle will have to sign a backup this week before they head to California to play Chivas. Keller will not be allowed in the game due to the red card. Dragavon looked like he was comfortable, he was controlling and talking to the defense, it was a screamer of a shot that unfortunately went in.

Montero had repeated opportunities in this match, with the best being a penalty shot just outside the box. Ljunberg set up to take the penalty, with a push he sent it foward opening the wall of the Wizards and Montero shot a knuckler that cleared the wall and hit the bar skipping off. It was a great shot.

Seattle in my opinion outplayed K.C. all match long. 4 good scoring chances, except luck tonight was not on the side of our Sounders.

Not taking anything away from Montero, or underwear boy Ljundberg, but Osvaldo Alonso again played another solid match. Stabilizing the middle, marking hard and giving the Wizards offense fits.

The game ended with 3 minutes in extra time, unfortunately with a 0-1 scoring result.

Overall, a great performance considering losing your #1 goalie, your captain early on and having to be select in making runs.

If you havent watched a game, you are really missing out. This is a solid team, they play solid together and personally love to watch it. So four weeks in, we're 3-1, 2nd in the Western conference. We are playing Chivas USA next week, who are 3-1-0, on top of the Western conference, that played to a 0-0 tie tonight against the Galaxy. Chivas will also not have a player, Paulo Nagamura, a midfielder with 2 goals due to a red card.

So bring it Chivas, we'll be ready, and we want our #1 ranking again.