** My cohort in crime just wrote a rant that ought to be plastered at the entrance of every sports broadcasting building in the U.S. It won't help, but it's comforting to see it print.
** Since the actual Superbowl doesn't seem to interest any of the media, they have latched onto "Deflategate." First of all, I hate 'cutesy,' so lets get rid if "De******te." Secondly, after watching major league baseball pitchers doctor baseballs in the last, I don't know, 120 years, it's hard to work up a really passionate hate over this. Gaylord Perry made a living throwing illegal pitches (spitballs) and he's in the Hall of Fame. Yes, we know deflating footballs is wrong, but we'll never know who did it, when they did it, if it was intentional, or anything else. All we have heard is the mantra of Bill Belichick, Tom Brady and Sgt. Schultz: "I know nothing!"
** We have a new baseball commissioner, Rob Manfred. Gone is Bunglin' Bud Selig. It's got to be an improvement, right? Not so fast, Bunkie. In one of his first interviews, he's indicated that he could be in favor of banning defensive shifts. Yeah, that'll work. "That's a ground rule double. The second baseman was too far to the left."
He also talks about improving the pace of the game but installing a pitch clock and shortening the length of time between innings. Nothing about keeping hitters in the batter's box. He wants to improve attendance by encouraging families to bring their children to the game. How many families in the U.S. can afford to but four tickets to a game, park their car, buy a program, four hot dogs, three soft drinks and a beer? At Yankee Stadium, that could run you about $3,000.
He wants to continue to get the best athletes on the field. I don't know about the 'best,' but he does have the greediest.
** Ichiro Suzuki is signing a one-year deal with the Miami Marlins. If he can sign with the Arizona Diamondbacks next year, he will have covered the four corners of the country.
** Syracuse missed 11 free throws last Saturday in a loss to Miami. Poor free throw shooting seems to have been an Orange bugaboo since the 1970's. What is Boeheim's problem?
** I read that pitcher Ted Lilly has been charged with insurance fraud. He allegedly filed a claim against his insurance for an accident that occurred days before he bought it, obviously thinking the company wouldn't bother checking on something that basic. Maybe Manfred should look into bringing intelligent athletes into the game.
This bugs me too: The headline read - "Former Yankee Ted Lilly indicted for insurance fraud." Lilly last played with the Yanks in 2002, appearing in exactly 49 games. He then played for Oakland (38 games), Toronto (89 games), Cubs (113) and finally, the Dodgers (59), ending in 2013. So 86% of his career was spent with teams other than NY, yet he's listed as "former Yankee". Why? What's next? "Former Yankee fan charged with conspiracy?" Mr X attended a Yankee game as recently as 1985 and actually bought a program.
** More drama ahead. It seems the Yanks are working to void that part of A-Rod's contract that calls for bonuses based on his home run totals, such as $6 million should he reach Willie Mays total, etc. The Yanks are saying they no longer have any merchandising value and that he lied when negotiating the deal. That should be interesting since the only thing A-Rod loves more than himself is his money.
***THEY SAID IT***
" First Spygate, now Deflategate. The line continues to blur between the New England Patriots and the team of inmates in “The Longest Yard.”" -- Brad Dickson
"It's official, he's now Coach 1K." -- Vince Girardi
"Congratulations to Gatorade, celebrating its 50th anniversary. At the next general meeting, the CEO will have football coaches dumped over her head." -- RJ Currie