I hope everyone had a safe and happy Fourth of July. I took the week off and was very much off-line and it was great. And there is a lot of sports news to filter through.
American League All-Star 1B
I follow baseball very lightly. I keep track of the MN Twins and have a general understanding of everything else going on.
I saw the AL Starting Line-Up for the All-Star game and I am going to play the “homer” card here. New York Yankees first base man, Mark Teixeira, was voted into the starting line-up over Twins slugger Justin Morneau and I have to say that I completely disagree. I will file this under “East Coast/Yankees basis”, so I thought I would lay down some stats in some of the major offensive categories.
- Hits: MT – 83, JM – 101
- HR: MT – 20, JM – 21
- RBI: MT – 61, JM – 69
- AVG: MT – .273, JM – .323
Morneau also leads in OPS, SLG, and OBP. But I do not really know the calculations that make up these numbers.
Morneau *Stats pulled from ESPN.
|Ranks 3rd in AL in BA (.323)
||Ranks 2nd in AL in HR (21)
|Ranks 2nd in AL in RBI (69)
||Ranks 8th in AL in R (56)
|Ranks 5th in AL in OBP (.399)
||Ranks 1st in AL in SLG (.601)
|Ranks 1st in AL in OPS (1.000)
|Ranks 4th in AL in HR (20)
||Ranks 5th in AL in RBI (61)
|Ranks 6th in AL in BB (48)
||Ranks 8th in AL in SLG (.546)
|Ranks 8th in AL in OPS (.928)
Ok, I am done. I think I have proved my point. Morneau should start!
I am a huge soccer rub and I watched the US team in the blowouts and the victories of the Confederations Cup and I was very impressed with the turn around Bob Bradley’s team made from the group stage to the finals.
The US team proved they can compete and are a legit top-15 team in the world, but they need to play more consistent. As cliche’ as that sounds, the US was incredible versus Egypt, Spain and Brazil and then very “sheepish” against Italy and Brazil – the first time.
Landon Donovanshowed he is a European level player, Oguchi Onyewu signed with AC Milan, and Jozy Altidore may get some time in Spain.
I am not completely convinced that Bob Bradley is the coach that can take the team to their full potential, but he did take a US team to the finals of a semi-major tournament that include soccer power houses.
There are concerns that the US brass to consider, but my major issue is this: How the hell is Freddy Adu not on the pitch? Other than Donovan and maybe Clint Dempsey, Adu is the most creative player on this roster who can create scoring opportunities in open play.
The back line is solid, goal keeping is top-notch, the mid-field is improved with Ricardo Clark playing the defensive holding midfielder, and speedster Charlie Davies is great counter-part to the strength of Altidore up front.
We will see how they handle the next step in the evaluation of a potentially strong team in the World Cup.
NBA Free Agency Grades
Rasheed Wallace to the Celtics = A. This makes sense for both sides. Wallace will get a chance at another title and the Celtics get KG knee insurance.
Hedu Turkaglu to the Raptors = B. Portland would have been a good fit, but I the roster is similar to the Magic, it will depend on the style.
Trevor Arizia to the Rockets = C+. Should have gone to LeBrons house. Rockets are in rebuilding mode, but if he stays could be a crucial part of the foundation.
Ben Gordon to the Pistons = B+. I don’t know what this means for Richard Hamilton, but Gordon can score and the Pistons needs help.
Charlie Villanuevato the Pistons = B. Rasheed Wallace Jr. He will have the oppurtunity to grow and become a major player.
Marcin Gortatto the Mavericks = C. I am not sure why, unless he is there to replace Erik Dampier.
Ron Artestto the Lakers = A-. This move has the potential to be messy, but Artest is a good player now. Solid defensively and better than Arzia offensively. Lakers are better.
Over all, the teams made themselves better. Wallace and Artest are very short-term fixes, but their teams are pushing to the title now. It will be a tough year in the East and Houston is going to struggle without Yao and who knows what they will get from Tracy McGrady.