Sunday, July 06, 2014


Is all of sports going haywire, or am I simply a crotchety old man?  Annie-O says it's obvious and has nothing to do with sports, but really? Consider these scenarios.

## Melky Cabrera gets thrown out at home plate in the 8th inning of a close game. Do we get to see the replay? Sure, and at the same time, we get a dialogue box giving the recap of the final score. Where do they put the box? Right over the tag play at home. Did he miss the tag? Is Melky out? We'll never know. Do the people producing the games and the highlight reels ever watch their product? Can't be.

## Every team has at least two trainers on board full time. Most teams have "strength and conditioning" coaches. Teams give players a target for their weight when they report to camp and most players work out all winter. They take as much as six weeks in spring training to get in shape. So what? Players are dropping like flies. In the 60's, teams had a 40-man roster and you were lucky if you ever saw more than 27 or 28 of them. Now, 40-man rosters aren't enough. they have to drop people off the 40-man roster just to put enough healthy players on the field. The injuries range from broken legs to bruises. I was going to joke and say broken finger nails, but even that has happened. Maybe we need more players like John Kruk, who looked like he could have said, "Save my stool at the bar, it's my turn to hit," but he was always there.

## The Yanks lost another one yesterday in extra innings (I HATE Michael Kay's "Free baseball") when Francisco Cervelli tried to complete a double play at first base by throwing the ball to the right fielder, who happened to be in right field. I blame the pitching staff, who again failed to give the Yankees their best chance to win a game - by throwing a shutout.

## Years ago, teams would improve themselves by trading for different players or signing young players in the sandlots. Then came free agency and teams would offer players money to induce them to sign with them. Players were in a great position; they just waited for the dollars to roll in. The only problem came when a player would happily sign for X amount of money, and then start pouting two years later when another player would sign for X Plus money.  So they added Opt-out clauses, so they could declare themselves free agents and go after more money. Now the animals are really running the zoo. Not only do they want big money, they want to dictate to teams to sign other star players so they can play for championships before they'll sign with them.

## This one is really weird. Jimmy Graham of the New Orleans Saints has been given the "Franchise Player" tag by the Saints. This means he can't sign with another team, but the Saints have to pay him a certain amount based on the highest paid players at his position. He wants to be called a wide receiver, but an arbiter says he's a tight end, which means less money to Graham. So picture this conversation: "What position do you play, Jimmy?" "I don't know. The courts haven't decided yet."

## Over 5 full seasons in New York, the Yankees paid  CC Sabathia over $10,000 an inning to pitch for them. Now it appears that Sabathia's career may have ended with his latest knee problem, which means the Yanks will pay him almost $70 million to lay in a hammock for the next 21/2 years. We may be looking at something similar (but more expensive) next year, if they discover that A-Rod is done for.

## Bobby Bonilla, who last played in the majors in 2001, received his annual check from the NY Mets for $1.1 million dollars. He will be getting this same check for 20 more years. Isn't it time for him to "opt-out" and try for a larger annuity?

## News Flash! Headline on ESPN: Yankees bolster pitching staff by trading Vidal Nuno for Brandon McCarthy. Explain to me how this bolsters your staff by dumping a pitcher with a record of  3-7, 4.78 ERA and acquiring one whose record is  3-10, 5.01?  I think I'm beginning to see the cause of the Yank's problems.

"In the NBA draft, the New York Knicks’ second-round selection of Thanasis Antetokounmpo was booed relentlessly. And that was just by the Knicks’ play-by-play announcer."  -- Brad Dickson
"There are reports that a vast majority of Baby Boomers are overweight or obese. In fact, they say that half of all Baby Boomers make up two-thirds of them."  -- Tim Hunter
"Clayton Kershaw beat the Rockies 9-0 on Friday night, running the Dodger lefty’s streak of consecutive zeroes to 36 innings.Cross-marketing experts immediately declared him The Official Pitcher of the World Cup."  -- Dwight Perry
"Laker star Kobe Bryant looked a bit flabby in some offseason photos. Apparently Kobe doesn’t like to pass at the dinner table either.-- Alex Kaseberg
"Jose Canseco is touring Canada. This is obviously America's revenge on our neighbor to the north for sending us Justin Bieber."  -- Brad Dickson
"Cubs 16; Red Sox 9. Boston doesn’t need hitting, they need Tom Brady."  -- TC Chong
"Refereeing in the World Cup makes me long for the simplicity of baseball's balk rule."  -- Janice Hough


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