Monday, October 02, 2006

Monday P.M. Quickie:
I'm Back! (So What'd I Miss?)

I'm back to blogging, and allow me a few thoughts to circle back to the last 24 hours in sports:

The No. 1 team in the NFL? Everyone saw them crush the defending NFC champs last night.

(I may have to revise my "1/4 MVP" ballot to give it to Steve McNair for the AFC and Rex Grossman for the NFC.)

Albert Haynesworth suspended 5 games: It's notable not for the viciousness of his stomp on Andre Gurode's face, but for being the longest NFL suspension ever for an on-field action.

Cubs fire Dusty Baker: Who didn't see this coming? The only question is whether the corporate restructuring within Tribune Co. will keep the Nats from poaching Joe Girardi.

Giants fire Felipe Alou: Hey, I hear Dusty Baker is available...

Remember that old rumor about Duke teammates Christian Laettner and Brian Davis? They're buying the Memphis Grizzlies together. Aww, how sweet...

(Could they possibly convince Coach K to take a pro job coaching the Grizz with Jerry West running the franchise?)

Clemens scandal: Well of COURSE he denies it. The question is: Will Hall of Fame voters hold this against him in the same way they're holding it against McGwire, Sosa and Bonds? Won't believe it 'til I see it.

(Now, the lead prosecutor for the Feds says that the LA Times story contains "significant inaccuracies." He didn't say if "inaccuracies" meant "The L.A. Times has lost all credibility, because Roger Clemens isn't listed.")

NBA Training Camps open tomorrow/Tuesday: I'll try to start rolling out my NBA preview, but I think it's mostly going to be back-loaded to the end of the month, closer to the actual opening game. Amazingly, the No. 1 storyline is the new freaking balls.

Also more tomorrow/Tuesday: It's the actual anniversary of the "Shot Heard 'Round the World," the most famous moment in baseball history. (It's also the subject of a great new book: "The Echoing Green," by Joshua Prager.)

And what about the MLB LDS series?!

I'm going to do a lot more tomorrow (Tuesday) morning in advance of the day's series starts. Here's my gut reactions ("gut" = I picked a Mets-A's World Series back in April in the Quickie):

A's over Twins (no confidence)
Yankees over Tigers (low confidence)
Mets over Dodgers (medium confidence)
Padres over Cards (high confidence)

-- D.S.


mkud said...

Where's Clemens' denial:

``I didn't see [this report], nor do I need to see it. But for the people involved, I think it's very dangerous and malicious and reckless on their part for some guys to have a document or whatever he did and supposedly put it out there with somebody else's writing on it. Grimsley never worked out with myself or Andy [Pettitte, also named] at any point. I don't know where that's coming from. When it's going to take a serious turn for me is when one of my sponsors pulls out. Then somebody's going to be responsible for that. Then my lawyers will take over from there."

Seems to me he angrily skirts around the issue, never actually addressing his own innocence or guilt.

manninghamheisman said...

I've been saying Clemens and D Ortiz have been on supplements for 3 years now. Pretty soon they'll see D Ortiz is too. I mean look at the size of him. As far as Clemens, nobody will ever take this seriously because he is a golden boy. This is exactly why I have no desire to watch baseball anymore. For all I know everyone is guily till proven innocent. Even Jeter. The MLBPA backed their players so much in not allowing them to be tested that it's going to come back to them. Now every hypothesis will be heresay. It's really sad. Thankfully we have college footballl....a clean, clean sport in comparision

mkud said...

You're far too presumptuous if you accuse any player of using ped's simply because he is large, and an idiot if you think college football is anywhere close to clean.

manninghamheisman said...

Baseball is the messiest sport.

It's never going to regain it's historical spot as the nation's #1 game. 2 reasons:

1) Steroids. It'll always be unproven which dilutes the whole game

2) 162 game in an age where people have short attention spans. It's like who has time for that? Everyone wants 16 or 12 games. It's that simple

mkud said...

I don't disagree as to football's preeminence on the sports is a much more appealing television product, and much easier to follow.

If you belileve for a second, however, that football is even a scintilla cleaner than baseball, you're blind.

D. Ling said...

Dan, you're killing teams with the Shanoff Curse of calling them the best team in the league...
Two weeks ago you were calling the Jaguars the best team in the NFL.. how has that worked out for you?
If you curse the Bears you might end up with Wilbon on your doorstep with baseball bat preparing for a "beatdown".

Maher said...

Tell me again how 5 games is enough? If one of us did that one the street we'd be looking at serious legal issues. At least in the NHL they took care of it right (though after the strike knocked out the whole season, they should have extended bertuzzi's suspension another year).

Maher said...

have you seen the bears's schedule? do they have a shot at 16-0? If they get past Buffalo (not a big if really, home game and Losman starting for the other team) they should be 8-0 going to the Meadowlands.

wildpitch_20 said...

Hey Dan, did you see Michael Lewis on the Colbert Report? I'd love to see what you thought about how he did. I enjoyed it more than Bill Simmons

Steve said...

260 interceptions down 17 to go, come on Favre you can break the record, I know it.

Mikepcfl said...

That's so cute that Davis and Laettner are buying a team together. Do they share a house too? How come Hurley isn't involved? Did they have a spat? I really thought Hurley and Laettner would last forever. Sad.

Moe said...

Big game for the Twins and A's - bigger for the Twins since if they were lose a game started by Cyntana could mess with their heads.

Twins' offence has been a bit shaky lately. Punto especially finished in a bit of a slump.

I love the stat of the Twins being 71-1 when leading after 7th inning.

This team has the Cy young winner, rookie of the month and the batting champ yet I'm really worried about the strength of the A's pitching staff.

Play ball!

Gary said...

I stumbled across this on the metro news feed, it's long and about the Clemens steroid thing in case you want to skip it

"Former Arizona Diamondbacks pitcher Jason Grimsley is denying claims by federal agents that he implicated fellow baseball players in the growing steroid scandal. Speaking through his attorney Ed Novak, Grimsley said he had no knowledge of star pitchers Roger Clemens and Andy Pettitte using performance-enhancing drugs. The "Arizona Republic" quotes Grimsley as saying "never in a million years" would Clemens and Pettitte use steroids. An affidavit filed in federal court last May was said to have contained the names of those players Grimsley identified, but the names were later blacked out when the document was made public. Grimsley, who was caught by investigators receiving an illegal shipment of a growth hormone last April, still hasn't been charged with any crime. He had agreed to cooperate with investigators, but later stopped when he hired an attorney."

Jake C said...

Baseball is not the dirtiest's simply the only major sport to have loads of media coverage on the issue. College Football and the NFL have far more use, I can guarentee you that...they just don't care.

Unknown said...

But... I dont care either.

Baseball has always pulled the 'tradition' and 'holier than thou' attitude about its sport that opens them to more criticism.
America's pasttime..the unwritten rules..integrity of the game bullcrap with Rose..etc.
The NFL and NBA have not done that, so escape the tighter scrutiny.

Eric in High Point,NC said...

That is very cute, the rumors about B.Davis and Laettner have been around since they left Duke in 1992. Apparently Laettner bought B.Davis a Benz when he got drafted...but on the other hand how many former college basketball players do you know that are part owners of NBA teams. Now all they need is to hire
JJ Reddick to be their pool boy.

Jake C said...

If you want to buy that, then that's fine. It's called media spin. You don't think the NFL has problems and is even worse, when half of a Super Bowl team comes up with PED issues and EVERYONE dismisses it?

TBender said...

Baseball is messier than football? HA!

The Carolina Panthers organizational steroid program?

Anonymous said...

It's simple, really. Baseball and their marketing arm and the news media made such a big deal of the home run records, and brushed aside any of the doubts (such as Reilly's column about how the players are juiced) about how they were doing it.

I think hitting probably takes as much skill as quarterbacking, running back, etc. But that's not the perception, and for a record as large as the home run record, it's clear now that the steroids gave them a sizable long term advantage that the Babe never had.

So that's why baseball looks awful and no one makes a big deal about football. Baseball created the problem for itself.

Personally, I find the Bears' Urlacher to be the scariest creation on the planet. If you've seen him with the pads off, it's hard to believe he's even human. He's more like a real-life comic book hero. Maybe the padding helps us to suspend disbelief?

Sean said...

My buddy saw Brian Davis and Christian Laettner walk into the Cosmic Cantina (burrito joint) in Durham together at 2am in the morning. And that was about 9 months ago. They are DEFINITELY together.

The Laughing Man said...

so how about "the declining Patriots"?

buaidhnobas24 said...

So, as for the Laettner thing. Is buying his way into a NBA team the only way this no talent ass clown (or should I say, no talent ass jockey) will make it on a NBA roster?