BAM! Yep, it’s me, the Dan LeBatard of the Gab. Back for another round of annoying takes, so let’s kick start this hopefully Aloha Friday with a few sports takes to set the table for the weekend…
Baseball Races. I’ve been thinking that there are some franchise who might want some help from our friend Jobu…
Atlanta Braves, 2-8 in their last ten and now three games back from the second Wild Card.
San Francisco, 5-5 in their last ten and one game up in the First Wild Card slot. They need to get Angel Pagan back soonest, and need to pour an extra shot of rum to get their pitching back up to speed.
Philadelphia Phillies. According to MLB.com, Cliff Lee is out for the season and the bats stink, so the Phillies actually went out and placed Cole Hamels and Marlon Byrd on waivers, only to have “unidentified teams” claim them? OK, let me understand this – they place Hamels on waivers, yet he has a limited no-trade clause which means he will only accept trades to the Angels, Braves, Dodgers, Cardinals, Nationals, Padres, Rangers, Red Sawx, and Cranks. So out of that group, whose gonna trade for ole Cole and give up what the Phillies might want? Anaheim or LA…MAYYYYYYYBE…
Not only that, Jonathan Papelbon cleared waivers and he has the audacity to say that he will happily waive it to close for a contending team? At first, I was gonna make fun of that, but he actually has good stats: 2-2, 1.71 ERA with 26 saves and 45 SO in 47.1 IP. After reading those stats, I was surprised he couldn’t be dealt, but then I read further: He has $13 mil owed to him next season, and $13 mil in 2016 (at the team option).
Philly ought not to get too greedy, but they could get some good out of Hamels and Papelbon.
Baseball Stadiums. I have had the good fortune to attend three spring training venues and now four different ballparks across the country in the last two years – ATT Park in SF, Marlins Park in Miami, Target Field, and Kauffman. If I had to rank them, it would be Kauffman (4), Marlins (3), ATT #2, and Target #1.
Ongoing Ray Rice Saga. Try as I might to ignore this, it keeps coming up – and if Keith Olbermann is right on this, it’s getting pretty damn scary…
Oh, and Keith, not to get political here, but you are one hypocritical son-of-a-bitch! You whack the Sheriff for a lack of transparency, but you are noticeably absent when it comes down to your heroes running the country. That’s right you liberal mouthpiece – everything you say applies to everything happening in Washington, DC but yet you won’t go after them.
NFL Training Camps. Not too many “traditions” in camp that I can recall, but it seems to me that it’s pretty damn cool to watch these kids in Green Bay with their bikes and Packer players.
Having been to two camps, I find it interesting the differing approaches. Vikings did two a days a morning walk-through no pads, and the second with pads and hitting. In KC, it was one practice with pads and hard hitting.
NFL Off-season. It seems pretty clear to me that in the off-season that more than a few NFL athletes let themselves go. If they can’t pass a basic conditioning test in July, then of course injuries are gonna be the next logical conclusion.
I’m certainly not a doctor, but there has to be some correlation between the relaxing of the off-season rules in the last CBA and the number of serious injuries that occur in July and August. I’m not saying be a slave driver, but what I am saying is can’t there be a more happy medium in keeping players in better shape heading in to camp?
NFL Pre-Season. With all the above being said, I personally think four games is too many and would like nothing better than to see it reduced to three or even better two games. Injuries are already too extensive and these exhibitions rip off the fans.
Buffalo (Toronto?) Bills. I’ve never been to Buffalo, and I only know one person whose ever lived there, but what I do know is that the Bills have been in Buffalo since what 1960? They have one hell of a fan following, and now some rich fat cat carpetbagger wants to steal the team and put it in Toronto? If I’m a fan of the Bills, hell yes I’m worried, and no Jon Bon Jovi, I don’t freaking believe you when you say the team is staying if your group gets them – why do you think Andre Reed busted verbal and virtual caps in your comments recently? Don’t you freaking know you’re being used?
Hey Canada and specifically Toronto, are you willing or even inclined to embrace an NFL team at the expense of the CFL and the Toronto Argonauts? Do you really want an NFL team owned and run by the same folks who give you Maple Leafs hockey every season? Just sayin’…
Finally, let’s be completely honest here Canada…are you willing to support the NFL when Hockey is starting up? Seriously?
Politics. I actually heard something from a talking head that made sense yesterday, and that is having the states start taking constitutional action against DC in the form of holding a new constitutional convention. You see DC, you’re about to get eaten up by politicians at the state level. They see what is going on and are starting to talk about going after you in terms of changing the rules of the game.
Look, it doesn’t matter what side of the spectrum you’re on politically or even if you have no opinion, nothing is getting done, and you are getting hurt in ways that you can’t imagine – inflation and increased prices are only the beginning.
Food - BBQ debate. Jerry and I got to thinking about this, and I’ve decided that adding to my bucket list will be a BBQ trip across all the different regions and deciding which is best. KC, St. Louis, Memphis, Carolina, Texas, “Deep South”. If you have recommendations of places to go, I will store them on my list.