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From the guy who likes to randomly cogitate...
Baseball Division: MLB
- THANK GOD it's baseball season!!!
- Am I the only person who wants the Chicago Cubs to get to 200 years without a W.S. trophy? Probably not, but I bet I'm the rare one that isn't a Cardinals fan.
- Don't look now but the Boston Red Sox are 3-1 and the bandwagon's suspension just got creakier...
- Kansas City is undefeated and leaning towards another victory as I type this. Only 25 more weeks left to blow their lead!!!
- Does anyone else remember when Joe Torre was a pitiful NL Manager? You can't remember all the way to last night?
- Chipper Jones is on pace for 324 RBI. I think he'll fall slightly short of that - I love early season projections. By June we will have COMPLETELY forgotten about them! After all, Scott Hairston won't hit 54 jacks and Johan Santana definitely won't get those 54 wins he's currently on pace for...
- My surprise team this year (besides the Rays) - the San Francisco Giants. The NL West is overloaded with young talent - which means teams will lose games they should win and the Giants are a scrappy team. If not, Aaron Rowand brings grit a lot of teams will need come the end of July...
- I get the sneaky feeling we're not done with Barry Bonds yet... He's gonna pull a Clemens and join a team in late May. But we are no doubt done with Clemens.
- Speaking of Bonds and Clemens - I think they are two of the best thing to happen to MLB ever. Young players will look at them and realize "Hey, if I'm not a dick to the media, I can get away with more shit". See: Andy Pettitte.
- BTW - what Jason Grimsley was doing - supplying HGH to other players - was WAY worse than anything Clemens or Bonds did. But he sucks so no one cares...
- It's going to be a good year for Mets fans when September rolls around. They'll be in first and the Yankees won't.
- Teams I think are severly over-rated:
- Boston Red Sox - 96 wins last year and they took a step backwards in making NO moves.
- Toronto Blue Jays - they still have leadership issues and a garbage SHORTstop.
- Detroit Tigers - their record won't be bad but when they don't win the AL Central, it will be a massive disappointment. Miguel Cabrera isn't THAT good and the team is getting old, quick.
- Seattle Mariners - WHY do people think they're any good to begin with? Erik Bedard hasn't proven jack to me until he plays a whole season.
- Chicago Cubs - I think Lou Piniella is done as a useful manager. He is living on past accolades and not present ability.
- St Louis Cardinals - most of baseball is "pitching" and Tony LaRussa is the most overrated manager in MLB history.
- Arizona Diamondbacks - plenty of talent and no cohesion. The team is based on a different guy getting hot every other day but it also has no identity. NOT a good mixture for sustained success.
- Colorado Rockies - I love Clint Hurdle but they had no business winning the NL last year.
- Teams I think are underrated (other than the Rays):
- New York Yankees - hello? They will make the right moves when they need to. The youth they are banking on isn't the solution but they can still make moves no other team can (Barry Bonds?)
- Kansas City Royals - they won't get to .500 but they'll win a lot of games they shouldn't
- Whatever they call themselves Angels - Will win the AL West by a country mile. They have a ton of over-rated players but that makes them deep.
- Oakland A's - you knwo what? They still have a ton of good players you don't know now, but will when they trade them all away again. Actually, they are preparing for a move to Fremont and Billy Beane clearly knows what he's doing.
- Cincinnati Reds - Dusty Baker gets a bad rap - rightfully so most of the time - but this is the kind of team he can lead into overachieving.
- San Diego Padres - the best team in the NL Worst. Pitching, pitching, pitching!!! But I still don't get the Edmonds signing.
Baseball Division: Tampa Bay Rays
- Give Andrew Friedman the Executive of the Year award right now. In fact, do it a couple times.
- "Carlos Pena 2007" was not a fluke. "Carlos Pena 2006" was.
- Carl Crawford had his option picked up (well, duh) and is muttering the words "I want to be a Tampa Bay Ray for life". As long as he keeps doing what he's been and stays healthy - he might be a Hall of Fame Tampa Bay Ray for life.
- Scott Kazmir is fine and anyone who says other is just a Yankee fan trying to jinx the Rays out of fear. Yeah, that what hapens when you get your ass kicked by Jonny Gomes
- Yes, I really truly believe the Rays will win 92 games and take the AL East this year.
- Tampa Bay will only get BETTER as the season goes on. Evan Longoria will be up in a couple weeks, Kazmir will hit the rotation and get going in the second half - JUST like last year and Friedman will have MANY CHIPS to move at the trade deadline.
- Oh yeah, the Rays STILL have the BEST farm system in the game, they still have David Price AND have the #1 overall pick again. If you don't realize what this all adds up to, you're probably still calling them the Devil Rays, aren't you, fool? I just fined you a dollar!!!
- Edwin Jackson might be on the trading block, but then again he might be a hell of alot better than you realize. He is still very young, very talented and just learning how to use his abilities to pitch and not just throw.
- So where are the people who doubted "Aki Mazeroski" couldn't play second. Amamzing, amazing artist with the alligator leather. And should hit well in the leadoff spot.
- BJ Upton will be an All-Star - MANY times.
- James Shields will push the 20 win plateau this year.
- Worst to first has happened enough times before - like the 1991 Atlanta Braves, for instance - the team the Rays are modelling themselves after...
- I became a Rays fan for charity but I stayed a Rays fan out of selfishness.
Basketball Division: NBA
- I won't get into specifics, but the NBA refs REALLY have sucked the past two-three weeks
- The Boston Celtics aren't winning the East.
- The LA Lakers are in trouble. Kobe won't win MVP and "Poodle" Gasol has shown his paper tiger side. If Baby Bynum comes back for the playoffs he will hurt the team's rotation more than help it. No less than 6 teams can run the Lakers out of the building in 5 games. Relying on 24 to carry the team is not a wise decision day after day; sure he can win a game for you but he loses more games by not playing within the team concept. Oh yeah, one more Technical foul for Kobe - #15 - and he'll be suspended a game. MVPs don't do that...
- Byron Scott looks like an awesome coach when he has a once-a-decade point guard running his teams. Chris Paul is absolutely your 2007-08 NBA MVP
- Will everyone quit bitching about a 16 team seeded playoff format? It's stupid and illogical. It isn't broke, so don't break it.
- Portland will be scary next year and for a while. Brandon Roy is no joke.
- LeBron might be the most improved player from last season.
- Al Horford deserves the RoY - he helps his team more than Kevin Durant. Durant is pretty smooth but he brings one dynamic. Horford is a well-rounded player adding to a deeper team in playoff contention.
- The Golden State Warriors are going to be on the outside looking in, not the Dallas Mavericks, not the Denver Nuggets. But the Mavericks WILL go one and done.
- Jason Kidd is a Hall of Famer and a great player but boy, does he suck.
- Message to the San Antonio Spurs - it's an EVEN numbered year! HA HA!
- Oklahoma City is an absolutely great town for basketball. They proved thier worth with the Hornets. The lower midwest is a basketball nutty area and let's face it... Kansas City and St Louis aren't getting teams anytime soon.
- Dont worry, Seattle... you'll get a new expansion team when Vegas gets their team. Charlotte wasn't as worthy as you!
Basketball Division: Phoenix Suns
- Raja Bell getting thrown out for smiling at a ref is absolutely the biggest bullshit. he gets no respect from refs and is one of the hardest playing dirtworkers in the Association. He is a better player in every respect than Bruce Bowen and 10 times the gentleman off the court.
- The Suns title hopes don't rest on Shaq. They rest on Leandro Barbosa and Boris Diaw.
- Let me tell you - I am a Gordan Giricek fan! He was a STEAL!!!
- Boris Diaw needs to get mean and also needs to understand how good of a scorer he is. Defenses play his passes not him. He is an outstanding passer - one of the best passers in the league - but he is too unselfish (an unselfish NBA player? It's true)
- The Big Shaquaro has been amazing as a Sun. Trainer Aaron Nelson has dipped him in the fountain of youth. The Suns training staff has some very state-of-the-art and crazy equipment including a treadmill that lifts the runner up with air and allows them to run at down to zero gravity. This lets players with lower injuries keep their respitory condition in shape.
- I'll finally admit it. I was dead wrong about Grant Hill. (It took me 17 years to admit it? Am I going to regret it now?) He has been an awesome addition to the Suns, although he is still a brutal 3pt shooter and I still have to hate him because of his Duke-iness. Class guy, but still a Dukie. Grant Hill earned his last three games of rest. He hurt his wrist and is good to play but they want him to be 100% for the playoffs.
- Shaq's FT shooting has been a joke for a long time, but Suns Asst. Coach Shot Doctor Phil (Weber) has Shaq spreading his hands and not shot putting the ball -he's 27-39 (69% - well oveer his career average) in his last 6 games. If you don't think Weber is a magician - look at Amare and his 75-84 (89% - WELL over his career average)over the last 6 games!!!
- Amare Stoudemire should recieve consideration for MVP. He is absolutely THE best post player in the game right now and is 100% unstoppable. He can hit all the way out to the three point line and dunk on your head from anywhere short of the free throw line. He has improved his defense, his passing AND his handle. He is amazing on and off the court and Shaq has only made him better. He averaged 29.4 pts and 9.4 reb for the month of March. Nash and STAT would take Stockton and Malone in a 2 on 2. Seriously.
- Don't look now, but Steve Nash might be the first ever "50-50-90" player in NBA history. 50% from the field, 50% from 3 and 90% from the line. He is disgustingly clutch and downright murderous from 3 point land this year.
- Suns pre/post game guy/legend Tom Chambers might not like me much (reasons I won't divluge at this moment) but Eddie Johnson and Dan Majerle are hands down the best tandem color guys in broadcasting and two very cool cats. Not just knowledgable, insightful and entertaing they are both fun-loving dudes. I've met both of them on several occasions including this past weekend when I took wifey to Majerle's new restaurant in Chandler (have been to his downtown restaurant meny times) for our 5th Anniversary and Thunder Dan made sure we had a good time. Wifey knows Dan and his Family from her days working as a Beer Betty on the golf courses in Traverse City, Michigan.
- The Suns will win the Championship this year. And the only teams that even scare me in the slightest is the Utah Jazz (so tough at home) and the Hornets - they are REALLY deep. The Suns have the Spurs number and I CAN'T WAIT UNTIL WE BEAT THEM in the playoffs!!!
Basketball Division: WNBA
- Every NBAer I've ever asked LOVES the WNBA, why can't "regular fans" understand the beauty of the game too?? Afraid of girls that are better than you?
- Yes, the WNBA season is right around the corner and I actually give a damn.
- My local WNBA champion Phoenix Mercury are preparing to defend their title without their Coach (Paul Westhead left to assist the "OKC Whatever they're gonna be"s) and most likely without their most dominant post player - Penny Taylor-Gil who was considering staying in Australia to prepare for the Olympics.
- Diana Taurasi is pound for pound the best basketball player on Earth. She can shoot like Bird, post up like Duncan, beat you off the dribble like AI, pass like Magic and can pump up a crowd like NO ONE else... I love her and so does anyone who knows and understands the game of basketball.
- At Majerle's restaurant, the men and women's bathrooms have NBA and WNBA logos on them. Very Clever.
Just for fun
Here is the intro to book my agent can't get sold... I might re-title it and change it around and try agin or I just might write a whole different book. When I get done being depressed about it, I'll decide!
==BABE RUTH DID IT WITHOUT PENICILLIN==
By Manny Stiles
The Game is not Pure. It never was Pure, it never will be…
...why does it need to be, anyway?
From the beginning of time man has sought the edge over his competition. Whether beast or human foe, nature or himself; beyond competition and dominance - man by his very essence constantly strives to achieve the comfort of a higher plane. Man chases endless bounds to feed a hunger of deeply desirous proportions. A force that exerts and consumes as if controlled in the depths of a heroin swoon, stirring inner strengths only to keep that high in tact.
It has been said that professional athletes can get addicted to the lime light and the adrenaline rush of carrying the moment. In places where crowds numbering well in the tens of thousands in person and into the millions of technologically informed who are subconsciously in the consumer demographic of “outcome concerned” there is an energy that transcends time. New legends are created every day. New memories are formed daily. These players of sport and game were our heroes until they became human again and we stopped paying attention to them. After their playing days are over many athletes go into deep depressions (see: Donnie Moore) and lash out with erratic behavior (see: Jeff Reardon)
I intend within the confines of the covers of this compilation of many Stilings to take you through a journey into our selves – the fanatics of Professional Sports - as much as into the landscape of Professional Sports. We will delve into what makes Sports the girder of society beyond the realms of our physical, mental and spiritual senses. We will investigate how our perceptions of these Sporting events weave into the fabric of our History, Entertainment and Leisure. We will explore how Sports has been a crucial Petri dish of scientific and medical discoveries that has benefited the general population and other ideas that might benefit us more. And finally we will define sports as analogous for life, as an art, a creation of man and how it says more about us than we can say about it.
It is a journey, a romantic tale of Love for Sports that breaks apart the mechanism of that special, breathtaking swoon of Love. How far the heart will travel to secure its Love. How far the brain will bend to push further it’s Love. How steely the Will must forge onward for its Love.
Oh! And how we cherish the annual rides of hope and panic and despair and glory and defeat and eventually distraught into the spiral of loss and then the gleam forward, onward to next season in hopes of being swept away into Eternal Destiny on the wings of Dynasty.
For the long awaited and openly doubted to the newest and truest :
For Today and Evermore…
We just all wanna be winners, damn it!
We are FANATICS …and We are MORE than just a Catch Phrase!!!
This book is dedicated to the very best that sports may bring you in life. It is a palate of experiences that has carved and still guides my very being daily. Competition will teach your to make challenges into opportunities. Physical play will lighten your soul and your gut, Ole’ McDonald’s Double chin and fat ass. It will give you something to look forward to. “I can’t wait until we kick the next team’s ass!”
When my favorite teams do well, I feel better, If my beloved Suns win, I am happier, I give a little more and act greedy a little less. I hold doors open for strangers and say “Go Suns!” while people driving behind me in traffic always flash me Amare’s new jersey number with their finger! “Yes, Shaq You, as well!” I say… The Suns are hot! I love it!
Is using a delusion of ignorance “cheating”?
We ALL want to be winners… How FAR will WE go? ? ? ?
This article was posted under the influence of 18 year Chivas (for me) and while listening to Thomas the Train playing on the DVD player (for the Q-Dog)... It's a celebration,. bitches!!! (and I'm not in the mood to go to the store to get some Patron Anejo)