The Sacramento Kings have had many boyfriends aka coaches over the years. There was their first kiss Jerry Reynolds, the one-night stand Bill Russell, the older man Dick Motta, their first real relationship Garry St. Jean, and their first black guy Eddie Jordan. Then came Rick Adelman. The two were together for eight magical years and many thought they would spend the rest of their lives together. The Kings went from undesirable to Prom Queen (ahem, King) during their time with Adelman. Then they got greedy. Thinking they were hot, they ditched Adelman in hopes of doing better. There was the rebound Eric Musselman but his drinking and jealousy became too much. Then they went for looks by getting involved with Reggie Theus. Ultimately, that didn’t work out either. After messing around with Kenny Natt for a few months, the Kings found themselves single and unwanted again. Not wanting to spend the upcoming season alone, it was time to find a new man. At this point, the Kings have been around the proverbial block a few times. They’re not the bombshell they used to be. The options are not as plentiful as they once were. They basically had just three prospects who would possibly take them, once Eddie Jordan wisely decided he had been there, done that. Tom Thibodeau wisely deleted the Kings number from his cell phone, realizing they would never work out. Kurt Rambis was not ready to give up his much hotter and wealthier woman to get involved with the Kings. That left just one guy…. Paul Westphal.
The Kings are now like that friend you have that’s in a relationship, even though you know they aren’t meant to be together. They clearly just don’t want to be alone, or spend the time looking for a better partner. You know who I’m talking about. We all know them. We all know the Kings should’ve married their high school sweetheart, Adelman, but he’s happily engaged to an Asian now, so he would never be stupid enough to leave that. Westphal and the Kings are now an official couple, but we’ll see how long before one finds greener pastures and let’s the other go. It’s only a matter of time.
Tha Jacka featuring Dre Dog. Yay Areaaaaaaaaaaaa!!!!!
The A’s have shown signs of life the past few weeks, and I’ve wanted to write a post ripping them for this uninspired season thus far, but they just wouldn’t let me do it. The last two weeks they’ve won seven of their last twelve! So my assumption is they didn’t want me to write about how crappy their season has been going. I guess, since they are in the midst of their 2nd three game winning streak of the season, I will have to ease up on some of my feelings towards this miserable start, but for the most part it’s been about as bad as it could be…
During the first series of the year, I wanted to go to two of the four games that were in Anaheim. One of the games I went to was a come from behind win in the 9th, where they scored 3 runs in the 8th and 3 in the 9th to win the game 6-4. I was so excited that I ended up buying the MLB.com package to watch every game I could on my computer when time permitted. The second game was cancelled to the Adenhart tragedy. Little did I know that this would be their only exciting game to watch over the next month and a half. Aside from Mike Ryan Sweeney’s amazing grabs in the outfield, that was about the only positive feeling I had after watching them. The offense was so bad at one point, I wouldn’t even want to look at the box score because there would be six or seven guys hitting under .200!
I WAS excited about the players that they had signed over the offseason, because it was really the first time in two years that they really seemed like they were trying to compete in the west. Many people told me that we were signing too many old players, but I didn’t really care! I was just pumped to see them actually making off-season moves that didn’t involve (insert Oakland’s best pitcher/hitter) for (three major league ready MINOR LEAGUE PLAYERS)! No wonder the Rivercats are always so good… Well, here’s my understanding of what is going on with some of the players that I was convinced during the off-season would make the A’s a force in the AL West.
- Matt Holliday – He was acquired via trade, and is supposed to be our big bat in the middle of the order. Observing him closely through the first month of the year (probably even a little more because he was on my fantasy team) I noticed one main theme. He looked like Pedro Serrano from Major League, as he constantly swung at bad pitches that weren’t even hittable. I wonder if he ever watched video of himself, because if they kept a stat for swings at a bad pitch out of the strike zone, Holliday would have one per at bat! Holliday’s thought process when he goes to the plate must be something to the extent of, “Cmon Matt, hit a bomb! Swing as hard as you can at the next pitch no matter where he throws it! Then grimace and tap the bat barrel on your head.” It really makes me wonder how he could have ever won two out of three triple-crown categories in one season. I guess Coors is truly the ultimate hitters’ park, I am a believer! I can’t say I’ve been impressed with anything he’s done this year! Ok, Ok he has turned it around lately, and I truly hope he proves me completely wrong! I hope I praise him and he inspires me to write up an MVP ballot for him, but he’s got to prove that to me. The whole “not mind being traded thing”, nope, not getting into it today…
- Jason Giambi – I’m guessing that I must’ve set the bar a little too high for the Giambino, since my last glimpse of him in the green and gold was his MVP season, and well, that Giambi will never stroll to the plate again, unless he starts taking some PED’s again! During this A’s offensive struggles, he was slumping as bad as Holliday, I found myself wishing that he had never signed on again and we just had Cust hitting in his spot with whoever at first. My opinion has been swayed lately with his power coming alive a little bit. Part of his problem was the way his swing has looked this year. I guess I didn’t watch him much while he was on the Yankees (seeing him only on SC highlights). At times I’d say he looks about as good as David Ortiz this first third of the season, but at least Giambi has 800% more homers than Ortiz! Bottom Line, his bat speed must be slowing, if not, it must be his reflexes…
- Orlando Cabrera – This guy tried to find any way possible to not sign with Oakland, and in the end I can’t completely blame him, since they were low-balling him. It’s been hard for me to root for him watching him play for the Angels and Red Sox, but I’m slowly adjusting. One thing is for sure, he has been playing like an unhappy guy (.225 BA). It’s probably like when I was answering customer calls for Oakley (I really hated the job), but I needed to work, so you just do what you gotta do. I just hope something snaps him out of his funk. I’ve watched way too much Angels baseball over the past few years living in Southern California, and when he was in Anaheim he always looked like he was having fun. In Oakland he’s had the someone just told me a relative died look on his face for nearly every game. If I was playing as bad as him, I’d probably have that look on my face too. I’ll tell you what O-Cab, we’re unhappy with your play so far this year, you need to step it up!
- Nomar Garciapara – Well, he’s played a lot so far this year… I guess he came to Oakland to take Chavez’s place when he’s hurt, er, uhh, I guess now Nomar is just competing with Chavez for who can spend the most time on the DL this season…
- Our Pitching – I’ve been excited at times, and shrugged my shoulders at times. What can you expect from a bunch of guys making their first dip in the major leagues!?! I have to say I’m pleasantly surprised. If their offense wasn’t ranked 12th out of the 14 teams in the AL we’d probably be close to .500. Ok, maybe that’s a bit hasty, but they’ve pitched plenty of games that the offense could have won if they could have scored a couple! Oh yeah, have to mention Mazzaro’s first gem in his first career start going 6 1/3 shutout innings only giving up two hits on Tuesday. Anderson and Cahill, the other two of the “big three” young guys, have pitched well on and off. Our bullpen has a lot of “live arms”. I really do like our pen, we’re full of guys with closer stuff. Between Bailey, Ziegler, Casilla, and Wuertz (even Breslow) we should be able to hold a lot of leads, if we can actually get them!
I feel at this point there’s no way to go but up! I’m finally content with the way the A’s are playing as winning will cure everything. I’m crossing my fingers that the team on the field over the last two weeks is what people were making a big fuss over during the off-season. They need to be within 5 games of first by the All-Star break or it’s going to be time for this year’s fire sale! First on the block, (Matt Holliday) for (Three major league ready minor league players). I hope this day doesn’t happen too soon, as I’m just starting to get into it again!
Back to back National Champions…. 60 game win streak…. and Bill Russell. “The second best team in the country was USF’s second string”
Many people haven’t seen this movie. You’re trippin. It’s a classic. Behold….
Where South Park meets the NFL. John Tayman, the creator of Bang Cartoons, has been making comical cartoons of our favorite players, coaches, announcers, and executives across the NFL since 2003. He writes, draws, and speaks for 99% of the characters in his cartoons. I have to say, I never envisioned Al Davis as a rapper! Plenty of players have come across his cartoons, even Terrell Owens and Kellen Winslow thought the skits making fun of their mishaps were funny. He started making the videos, because he felt that people take sports way to seriously! He wanted to lighten the mood, and show the mishaps of these sports figures when they aren’t placed up on the “pedistal”. Check some of them out they are pretty funny or atleast the ones from your favorite team!
The Texas Longhorns were part of the longest game in NCAA baseball history which lasted 25 innings. What was more amazing is that Austin Wood came in to the game as a reliever for Texas with one out in the 7th. He stayed in the game and threw 13 scoreless innings. He threw 12.1 innings without even giving up a hit. His final line was two hits, four walks, and fourteen strikeouts. He threw 169 pitches over the 13 innings. Wood also threw two scoreless innings the previous night! He logged another 30 pitches in that effort. After the game, Augie Garrido, Longhorns Coach, kept saying “He said he felt good, so we left him out there. He didn’t feel tired so we kept letting him pitch. He was unhittable.”
Now, I’m not an expert about how pitching arms work, but there is no way you can convince me that throwing nearly 200 pitches over two days isn’t a lot! That’s not including warmups in the bullpen and side work! He may have been on a roll, but would you risk some kids future by overworking him in college? This kid sounds like he’ll at least have a shot in minor league ball, and who knows one day maybe make it up to the MLB. Would it be the coaches fault if this kid’s arm falls apart in a couple of years? I would probably blame myself if I was that coach! Who knows maybe he’s so old school of a coach he knows what he’s doing. I think he definitely should have had some type of moral responsibility for putting Wood’s future in front of the game at hand. Here’s the box for the game.
Enough Said…….(best seen in high quality)
Short and to the point for this post….Once again the future of Chelsea FC is at a crossroads. With one of the most anticlimactic managerial appointments in recent memory wrapping up today, Carlo Ancelotti takes the helm at Chelsea. As a long time supporter of Chelsea I have mixed feeling about this announcement. First on the positive side, Carlo’s European pedigree is first rate. Taking any club to three Champions League finals is no small task, and his ability to build cohesive teams with diverse world backgrounds is with out question. I’m particularly happy that the Chelsea hierarchy moved quickly and with great purpose to get Ancelotti on board as quickly as possible. With the news coming only two days after the FA Cup final (I almost called that score line in my previous post….anybody think goal line technology isn’t a must in football anymore?) maximum time is now given to Ancelotti to begin his squad shaping. Minimal moves are required really (let’s just assume right now Deco and Carvalho end up at Inter shall we?), the squad is strong up top, and has one of the fiercest center midfield’s in the world. Our back-line was tied for fewest goals conceded in the Premier league which suggests the continued partnership of Alex and Terry will be fine, the emergence of Branislav Ivanovicwas also a nice development towards the second half of the season. The immediate focus for Carlo should be addressing an attacking wing position; Malouda, Cole, and Kalou are solid pieces but a world class winger preferably with a strong left foot would be an ideal addition.
As for the negative side of this hire? Didn’t we just go down this road with a foreign coach less then a year ago? Who also lacked strong English skills and came from a completely different background of football? I know all about the argument of the differences of national team management compared to that of club, and how the comparisons between Scolari and Ancelotti really shouldn’t be drawn…..but I don’t care, this hire seems a tad to close to same mold and style of coach for me to be comfortable with. Marcel Desailly one of the legends of Chelsea is on record as early as last week voicing his concern on the potential hire that now has become reality. How quickly will Ancelotti adapt to the massive differences of Premier League play? How will he build a flowing brand of football that Roman Abramovich demands? Anybody who’s watched an AC Milan match quickly recognizes a methodical, build up style of soccer that may not be ideal for the fast paced, end to end action of English football. Which brings me to Ancelotti’s domestic league record. In eight years at AC Milan he can only point to one league title? With several second place and third place showings maybe this isn’t a huge deal, but is worth noting as a possible concern.
The Chelsea nation will be eagerly awaiting the launch of the World Football Challenge in July. Only questions and conjecture are left to ponder, as once again, Chelsea have a new face at The Bridge trying there hand at living up to the lasting impression of “The Special One” who still looms large. With Hiddinks recent successes, that task maybe impossible.