MLB All-Star Break: Here we go: Midseason Awards! It's the unofficial official unofficial midpoint of the season, so here's your chance to weigh in with your award winners. Here are your categories (along with my picks):
Why: Because I'm an OPS snob.
AL Cy: Johan Santana
Why: Because he's STILL the
AL Rookie: Delmon Young
Why: Because who could pick Elijah Dukes?
AL Manager: Mike Hargrove
Why: Because it's so damn ironic.
NL MVP: Prince Fielder
Why: Because he's the new Ryan Howard.
NL Cy: Jake Peavy
Why: Because he was so due for this.
NL Rookie: Ryan Braun
Why: Because he's
Jewish only 160 AB into it.
NL Manager: Ned Yost
Why: Because the Brewers are in 1st.
Use the comments section to weigh in with your selections. Extra credit for inspired unconventional picks (but don't forget to back 'em up).
Finally, a special category worthy of our daily routine: Biggest AL Dud and Biggest NL Dud. (We'll presume that "MVP" is a proxy for "Stud.") I leave that one up to you -- fans' choice.
MLB All-Star Home Run Derby: The group is one of the more compelling in years: Defending champ Ryan Howard, Albert Pujols (which is totally exciting), Prince Fielder, Alex Rios, and a trio of AL MVPs: Vlad Guerrero (2004), Justin Morneau (2006), Magglio Ordonez (2007?!). My pick: Prince Fielder, the new Ryan Howard.
MLB All-Star Blogger Award: To USS Mariner, long the gold standard among MLB team blogs. The Mariners' pitching coach actually used one of their blog posts to change strategy for Felix Hernandez... and it worked. This is up there with TrueHoop's acquisition by ESPN as one of the guaranteed Top 3 sports-blog moments of 2007... if not ever. (h/t: DS.com reader Scott H.)
The hottest team in baseball: The Tigers, who have won 5 straight (including a weekend sweep of the Red Sox) and 14 of 19, to move into first place in the brutally tough AL Central. The defending
Mark Buehrle is staying with the White Sox: 4 years, $56 million. Quite the opposite of "imminent trade," isn't it?
NBA Summer: What you missed this weekend... In two games, Greg Oden has picked up the same number of fouls (19) as points... Kevin Durant is off to only a slightly better start (5-of-17 FG shooting against Summer League D)... Yi Watch: In last night's win for Team
Tiger's Golf Tournament: KJ Choi wins it. But it was more significant for what it meant to Tiger in his ability to create his own PGA-type event. Or will that be... events?
Tour de France: Sprint specialist Robbie McEwen finished first in the first stage. McEwen is one of those rider names you always heard about during the Lance Era as "If only Lance wasn't competing." Which means the positive drug test should be happening any minute now.
Navel-Gazing: If you are as fascinated as I am by the relationship between mainstream sports media and sports blogs, Matt Ufford's Fanhouse post explaining said sports blogs to said mainstream media is a must-read. (TrueHoop picked up the SI gaffe, too.)