Thursday, August 27, 2009

Agents, Pitino and Fantasy Football

There are a few things in life that the better they are, the more they go unnoticed. These things include waiters/waitresses, referees/umpires, offensive linemen and agents, particularly NFL agents. Do you know who the agents for Peyton Manning, Eli Manning, Tony Romo or Adrian Peterson are? Of course not, because they are great at their jobs. Any guy that gets Eli Manning 100 million has to be considered one of the best. FYI- The Mannings, Romo and Peterson all have the same agent, Tom Condon. I say that to say this: Watching Michael Crabtree and especially Andre Smith holdout makes me angry. There's no doubt in my mind that these agents are looking to be more like Drew Rosenhaus, who pops up every couple of months, than Condon, who could walk down the street in total anonymity. Smiths agent, Alvin Keels (who has a twitter by the way. The second I find out my agent has a twitter, we're done) is attempting to standout, but is actually screwing his player and ultimately himself, out of money. When Smith finally gets to camp and gets tossed around the field because he missed camp, his value goes down. And when his value goes down, so does his agents. Last night on "Hard Knocks", Smith was openly mocked while players and coaches fell over with laughter. I have a hard time believing that once Smith does get into the locker room, he will make friends fast. Hell, Brett Favre is already creating "issues" in the Minnesota locker room and he's a future Hall of Famer. Andre Smith has nothing to fall back on and part of me hopes he sits out the whole year and enters next years draft. Yes, we would have blown a pick, but we wouldn't be saddled with a terrible contract for an undeserving player and it would show the guys in the locker room that the team actually goes to bat for them. Too bad Smith will waddle into camp in about 2 weeks and grossly under perform despite being grossly overpaid.

Feel bad for Pitino? Not at all. Nobody forced you to have sex in that restaurant with a mentally unstable woman Rick. She didn't stick you up for that $3,000 of abortion money. Nobody made you bribe the trainer to marry her to get her out of your pressed, gelled hair. What made me laugh the most is how Pitino said how much is hurting his family. You mean your wife who hates the state of Kentucky and lives in New York. The same wife who couldn't make the flight down to be by your side during these press conferences? How about the son who bolted for Florida probably after he found out that this scandal would break? I have to believe this isn't the first time this has happened. This is just the first time someone called Pitino's bluff and tried to extort him. So no, Rick gets no sympathy from me either. I'll tell you who I do feel bad for in this situation...actually, there's no one I feel bad for. I'm rather enjoying this saga.

Did my Fantasy Draft last night and of course it's premature, and completely unjust but I see big things for us this year.
Here's my team:

QB: Kurt Warner- Of course this will be the year he turns into injury/fumble prone Kurt again.
RB: Adrian Peterson- I actually didn't want to take him, but no one else seemed that appealing.
RB: Clinton Portis- It seems like every year I lose a couple games at the hands of Portis. I can't beat him, so I drafted him.
RB/WR: Derrick Ward- I was loving this as a sleeper pick until I found out that Rasheem Morris plans to do 2 series with Ward, 1 with Earnest Graham and 1 with Cadillac Williams. Maybe he'll read this and reconsider.
WR: Greg Jennings- For the first time in my life, I have a rooting interest in the Packers!
WR: Desean Jackson: That offense should be potent. That counts for something.
TE: Greg Olson- Cutlers got to throw to somebody right?
D/ST: Patriots- I was THIS close to taking the Bengals but decided against it.
K: Kris Brown: Um, the Texans score a lot of points?

-Ahmad Bradshaw: Ward is gone and Brandon Jacobs hasn't played 16 games in 3 years. Hello my new sleeper pick.
-Hines Ward: Another guy that kills me every year so I reluctantly welcome him to the squad.
-Carson Palmer: You didn't think I was going to go Bengal-less did you?
-Torry Holt: Garrard has to throw to somebody and I think Holt has something to prove.
- Josh Morgan: Crabtree is nowhere to be found and Isaac Bruce just turned 44.
-Sammy Morris: He always gets a good share of touches in New England
-Kyle Orton: Ok ok, hear me out.
1. I can't count on Palmer or Warner to stay healthy for 16 games.
2. Matthew Berry made a good point: He has the same cast that helped Cutler succeed: Two good WR's, a stable of solid RB's, a good TE and a good offensive line. Not to mention that Josh McDaniel is on the verge of becoming an abject failure before he coaches his first real game. He's going to invest all he has in Orton to make sure he's a presentable QB.
3. Time was running out and it was Orton or Laurence Maroney. I went Orton.

Do you feel as good about my squad as I do? Will you be there to comfort me when we sputter into the playoffs and I'm left wondering where the wheels came off?

Don't look now but the Reds have won 3 in a row...right after losing 24 of their last 31.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Favre (Again)

My feelings on Favre are much the same as they were when I thought he was coming back with the Vikings a number of weeks ago. I don't like it, but I can't blame him. I have heard from a ton of former players that walking away from the game is hard. I'm sure it gets even harder when a team wants you as bad as the Vikings wanted Favre. He still feels like he can play, and he found a team that wants to pay him lots of money. I really couldn't blame anyone for taking that.
If I were on the Vikings, though, I would be a little unhappy that this guy can just waltz in and claim the starting QB position (especially if I were Rosenfels or Jackson).
Still, I'd take Favre over either of those guys. I like Jackson. I believe he will be a good starting quarterback some day. But not this year. Everyone has been talking about how great Rosenfels looked in training camp...but I'm not buying it. Have people forgotten about the disastrous ending against the Colts last year? The one where he threw an interception and fumbled three times (losing two), including a terrible fumble in the closing minutes that gave Indy the win? Sorry, but I'm not buying Rosenfels as a good QB.
Favre, on the other hand, should give them a good chance to win...if he picks up the offense in time, that is. People seem to forget that, even though the Jets missed the playoffs, they still improved by 5 wins during his season there (from 4-12 to 9-7). I know he faded down the stretch, but a 5 game improvement is a 5 game improvement.
All that being's still going to be hard watching in come into Lambeau wearing a Vikings jersey.
I've said this over and over again, but it's worth repeating: I can't hate the guy. I can't. I grew up watching and loving him. He was the quarterback of my favorite team for a long time, and he rarely lost. He won a Super Bowl for us. We all loved him. Even after all of this, I don't know how any Packers fan can turn against him. I cheered for him last year with the Jets. It'll be harder to cheer for him this year, as the division will be at stake, but I don't want to see him crash and burn.
I see him as a wayward brother. I may not agree with what he's doing, but I still love him, and hope that, wherever he is, he does well. I just hope that he one day comes to his senses and realizes the mistakes that he has made.
One more thing, and I'm done. I don't understand all the people that say he's tarnishing his legacy. That's ridiculous. Does the fact that he's ending his career with a rival mean that he wasn't a great quarterback? That he didn't love playing? Of course not. Maybe people don't agree with what he's doing, but I don't see how this late career indiscretion can tarnish an entire career. I just don't.

Packer talk? Okay...
I love what I'm seeing. Granted, it's only preseason, but they look great on both sides of the ball. Their offense looks terrific (better than last year), and their defense looks great. Their transition to the 3-4 doesn't look like it could go much smoother. Raji got on the field this past game, and he's looking pretty impressive. The linebackers look great (and Nick Barnett hasn't even been on the field yet).
I know I's preseason. And they've played the Browns and the Bills. It means nothing. Still, it's hard to ignore how great they have looked so far. Consider me extremely excited for this season.

I've heard of Worldwide Wes. I remember reading something about him the day Calipari announced that he was coming to Kentucky. While I can certainly appreciate what he does, it's hard to ignore the fact that he just sounds like a shady fellow. They jury is still out.

You know as well as anyone how much I hate the Red Sox. I also hate reading stories about the Red Sox. Still, this one was too good to pass up.
You may have heard Papelbon's comments about the Sox's interest in Billy Wagner a couple of days ago. In case you didn't hear them, he basically said that they didn't need Wagner, and that Wagner wasn't really all that good, anyway.
Apparently Theo Epstein sat Papelbon down and talked to him about it. When asked later about it, Epstein explained about Papelbon, "He's not a Rhodes scholar to begin with." Is there a better way of saying, "They guy is an idiot."
That quote kills me.

Pitino says the media has made his life "pure hell". Do you feel bad for him at all? I sure don't.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Favre: Back in Action...and this time I mean it

I must say, I actually can't blame Favre for coming back this time. The media is the one that stalks his every move. I think he could have handled the "skipping training camp without saying I want to skip training camp" thing better, but I certainly can't blame him for wanting to skip it. He also stepped into a better situation than he did last year in New York. That Jets team doesn't need him as bad as this Minnesota team does. I don't think he makes them Super Bowl contenders, but I think as long as he gives them a "B-", they will win the division again. Do you even have feelings on this anymore or are you all cried out? Have your feelings since last season changed any since he's now guaranteed to make at least one trip into Lambeau this year?

24 months in jail for shooting yourself in a club.
23 months in jail for charges related to dog fighting.
24 days in prison for vehicular manslaughter while you are drunk and high.
Eh, makes sense. The system works.

Calipari hasn't coached a game in Rupp Arena yet and his name is already in the news for all the wrong reasons. He just had his second Final Four appearance stripped from him after it was confirmed that someone took the SAT for Derrick Rose. First, how dumb do you have to be to not make the minimum score on the SAT and have people arrange for someone else to take it for you because they know you won't get the minimum score? Second, Coach Cal hasn't been to any Final Fours officially and is still making 31 million dollars over the next 8 years. The "punishment" for recruiting violations has to be more strict. Nobody lost in the recent Memphis violations. Calipari and Rose have since moved on to greener pastures. Memphis still has all the money from merchandise and tickets from all that season. As long as a championship win isn't vacated, nobody really gets punished. I think that's almost as ridiculous as players being forced to sit out a season while transferring, yet coaches can come and go as they please.

Speaking of Cal, are you familiar with William "Worldwide Wes" Wesley? He's a good friend of Coach Cal, Michael Jordan, LeBron James, aka anybody who's anybody. He's the guy that walked Artest off the court after the Brawl in Detroit.
If you're not familiar with him, and even if you are, this article will tell you all you need to know. I'd take quotes from it but it would really be doing the article a disservice. Do yourself a favor and check it out. On one hand, he is tied to controversy and shady dealings, but on the other hand he is helping kids get to where they want to be, he's not breaking any laws doing it and his name has never been directly tied to any scandals. Your thoughts?

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Malkovich? Malkovich?

I have to say: I love the idea of taking over Michael Phelps' body just to see how awkward he would be in any sort of athletic activity. You know what? Let's expand that to every day life. Wouldn't you like to know what Phelps looks like when he's putting bread in a toaster? How about Phelps loading songs onto his iPod? Eating a hamburger? I'm willing to bet that he looks awkward no matter what he's doing (especially smiling). You becoming Michael Phelps would be like Being John Malkovich, but with more awkwardness.

Sorry about the Lakers Championship stuff. The pain lessens eventually...but it never fully leaves. Even now, a couple of years removed, I have a hard time watching any game in which the Cardinals are involved (even seeing the name makes me cringe a little and lament a blown opportunity).

Packers signed BJ Raji and he's saying he should be in the next preseason game. I'm pretty excited about this. I'm currently watching the first Packers preseason game (yes...I'm watching a preseason game that has already been played. There's nothing wrong with that), and their defense is looking pretty good this season. Granted, it's the first preseason game (and they're playing the Browns), but their defense is looking solid. Most teams can't make the transition to 3-4 right away, but the Packers are looking like they know what they're doing. Throwing Raji in there certainly can't hurt anything. I'm just itching for the first game.

I think I would enjoy "Hard Knocks", but I have not seen it. No HBO. I've heard other people saying the same thing that you have: "This team is going to go 16-0. They have no weaknesses." I have a feeling I would do the same thing.

I'm not even touching the Brett Favre situation right now.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Usain Phelps in the house!

I don't know if its happened to you yet, but now that I'm starting to see all the "Get your 2009 Lakers Championship T-shirts/coffee mugs/butt plugs today!" commercials and it's really bumming me out about the Finals. In the past week, I've been much sadder about them than I was right after the end of Game 5. It's easy to say Dwight Howard and a relatively young Magic will make it back to the Finals, but the same was said about Shaq & Penny, Dan Marino and countless others. There are no promises in sports but I guess that's what keeps me coming back. I can't love the fire when it heats my food, but hate the fire when it burns my hand. You've got to take the good and bad of it. Maybe its just the pessimist in me but I'm already seeing the bad in the upcoming season. Boston has had a great offseason and figures to be healthy this year. Cleveland added key pieces without losing any of their core from last year. They just signed Leon Powe for the veterans minimum which I think could be the best move of the off-season. He won't be back until February but will have plenty of time to get himself in game shape for the playoffs and getting vengeance on the Celtics that let him go. It hurts looking back on each game of the Finals and knowing that we should have won 3 of the 4 games that we lost. It hurts knowing that we've all but dismantled the team that got us there. It hurts that a brand new cast will be expected to pick up where last seasons team left off and still be hungry to avenge a loss that they didn't suffer.

I think the Vick move is a great one for Philly. There's no guarantee that McNabb plays 16 games this season, and his backup just got hurt so getting Vick is a good look. Kolb is still the QB of the future, but this is an audition for Vick. He has to prove he's still got it and can be a solid QB in this league. I'm not big on the Wildcat offense craze, but I have to admit a formation of McNabb-Vick-Westbrook-Shady McCoy-Desean Jackson-Jeremy Maclin could be exciting to watch. I don't know exactly how things will play out but like you said, it will be interesting to say the least. Also, I hate PETA with a passion and couldn't be happier that they will be forced to protest around raucous Philadelphia crowds. I love it. I will say this: Within an hour of the news, I've had at least three friends make it clear they intended on ordering the Eagles Vick jersey. The jersey will be among the top 10 sellers in the league this season.

The Bengals haven't signed Andre Smith either and it really makes me nervous. Here's a guy who didn't exactly have an ideal combine and expected to slip in the draft before we drafted him. Shouldn't he sign for a little less because of the massive risk we took by drafting him? We've said it here before but there needs to be a payscale in the NFL. First of all, it cuts out ridiculous, potentially franchise killing deals. Second, it assures that the highest paid players in the league are the ones that have, you know, made a Pro Bowl or actually taken a snap. I know contracts are supposed to be based on what the player is going to do and not what they have done, but thats bogus. How else do you explain Eli Manning getting 100 million dollars? Payscale. NFL. Now.

Speaking of the Bengals, are you a fan of "Hard Knocks"? I love the show but I don't know if I'll be able to watch this season with the Bengals on it. With the way everyone is portrayed as being on the verge of a breakout season, I was convinced we would go 16-0 this year. Our third string fullback benches like 900 pounds! Look at Palmer throw that ball into a garbage can! Ocho Cinco looks better than ever! Well I was convinced until I saw miserly owner Mike Brown in the locker room chatting it up with the coaches and asking, "Do we really need 3 FB's and 3 TE's? Can't Jones play both?" That and Roy Williams openly admitting to the cameras he likes to slack during training camp and was trying to find a way to dog it through the Oklahoma drill. Suddenly I understand a lot more about Williams career, his flaws and why no team would take a chance on him this year...except us. Who dey indeed.

I did catch the brawl and Youkilis let me down. When I first saw him charge, I expected him to destroy Porcello. Next thing I know, Porcello throws Youkilis down. First off, why do batters throw down their helmet as they rush the mound? Shouldn't you take it with you? Second, shouldn't the move be to trot to first like nothings wrong, and then rush the pitcher? I'd love to see that happen. For my money, the one player I wouldn't want to see charge me is...Albert Belle. I know he's not in the league right now. Don't care. He scared the hell out of me as a child and I'm pretty sure he'd scare me now. I found this excerpt from Buster Olney in 2003 about Belle:

"It was a taken in baseball circles that Albert Belle was nuts... The Indians billed him $10,000 a year for the damage he caused in clubhouses on the road and at home...Few escaped his wrath: on some days he would destroy the postgame buffet...launching plates into the shower... after one poor at-bat against Boston, he retreated to the visitor's clubhouse and took a bat to teammate Kenny Lofton's boombox. Belle preferred to have the clubhouse cold, below 60 degrees, and when one chilly teammate turned up the heat, Belle walked over, turned down the thermostat, and smashed it with his bat. His nickname, thereafter, was "Mr. Freeze."

I really have to wonder how Tubby Smith is feeling right about now. His predecessor is caught in an ugly situation involving adultery, extortion and abortion. His successor was ran out of town after a lack of success on the court and a lack of sobriety off of it. Meanwhile he's sitting pretty and building a solid team in Minnesota.

I agree with your brother on Collinsworth: He's much better as the third wheel. I heard an interview with him where he claimed he wouldn't do well as a play-by-play/color commentator, because he doesn't watch the ball during a play. He watches the line of scrimmage to see who wins the point of attack and then he finds the ball. If he's the color guy in the booth, he's eh, but if he can do his thing as the third man, I really enjoy his insight. Jon Gruden on the other hand...

Did you see Usain Bolt's race on Sunday? I'm no big track and field buff, but I'll tune in to any race he's participating in. Lexington native Tyson Gay ran the race of his life in the 100 meter dash and set a US record with 9.71 seconds...and still came in second place to Bolt. Bolt broke his own world record and set a new one at 9.58 seconds.

That's unbelievable. He slowed up with a few meters to go and still shattered his own record. I read somewhere that his speed equates to running the 40 yard dash in around 3.5 seconds. I'd love to be able to run that fast, if only for a day. If you could occupy any athlete's body, present or past, for 24 hours, who would it be?

In reverse order, I would go with:

3b. Michael Phelps- Not for the swimming abilities, but to see if he can do anything remotely athletic i.e., throw a baseball, catch a football, shoot a free throw, etc. I'm willing to bet that he can't.

3a. Young Shaq- Shaq in his Orlando days where he was about 315 pounds of muscle. I'd like to be that big and agile for just a day.

2. Usain Bolt- Possibly the fastest man ever on a 6'5 frame? Say no more.

1. LeBron James- Could it be anyone else? I'd do 360 dunks for hours at a time and then go to the local YMCA and dominate at any sport I chose. Raquetball, volleyball, tetherball, doesn't matter. All bets are off.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

The NFL...It's Vicktastic!

Big up for the Eagles on their acquisition of Mike Vick. It's not a terrible deal for either of them; Vick gets at least one year at $1.2 million, with a second year option for $5.2 million. If he doesn't work out, the Eagles don't have to bring him back for a second year, and they're not out any major money.
How do you think McNabb feels about this, though? I know that he just signed an extension, so that makes this a little easier to bear. Still, over the past couple of years, he has felt like the Eagles have been looking for his replacement. I know that Vick hasn't played football in a couple of years, but what happens if he plays great? What if McNabb gets injured, Vick steps in for a couple of games and they go on a winning streak? Would they want to get rid of Vick after this year? If not, how can you justify spending $5.2 million on a back-up quarterback? This should be interesting.

B.J. Raji is still unsigned, which kind of sucks. I was really looking forward to having him on the defensive line. I really hope he signs soon, so that he can start learning the defense. I'm pretty hyped for our defense this year, and I think we have a strong defensive line. However, a big guy (or three) always goes down by Week 4, and it would be nice to have someone that would be able to step in and be effective right away.

Did you happen to see the Tigers/Red Sox brawl? If I didn't know this before, I know it now: Kevin Youkilis is a mad man. I would be terrified to go anywhere near him.

I haven't weighed in on Eli's contract yet. Yikes. I know he won a Super Bowl, but didn't that have more to do with the defense? Did the front office even watch what happened post-Plaxico last year? I'm excited to see where this is going.

Extremely hyped for the football season. I made some beer brats for the Hall of Fame Game last weekend. Just fantastic stuff. And it was actually one of the better Hall of Fame Games I've seen.
However, I was not overly thrilled with the Michaels/Collinsworth booth. I never have been a Collinsworth fan, and I think I liked him less on Sunday than I ever had. He just seems to like the sound of his voice a bit too much. I was talking to my brother about this, and he said that Collinsworth seems to work best in a three-man booth; play-by-play, color, and Collinsworth. I'm hoping that they get a little better before the season starts, but I'm not overly hopeful.

Friday, August 7, 2009

A little extra...

Because I'm doing absolutely nothing at work, I might as well get something done here.

Rashard Lewis has been suspended for the first 10 games for using banned substances that elevated his testosterone level. I'll be honest: I don't care. I don't advocate cheating but an extra 10 games off for a soon to be 30 year old jump shooter? I'll take it. It will take him a few games to gel once he does get back on the court, but buy then, the rest of the team should be in sync, so the team won't suffer much hopefully. In the first 10 games, we only play two teams that made the playoffs last year: Philly and Cleveland. I actually like him missing the Cleveland game. It's something Greg Poppovich has been doing for years in San Antonio. During regular season games against top teams in the West, Popp will sit either Duncan, Parker or Ginobili for "rest". If the team wins, they did it without a key guy. If they lose, it's a built in excuse for the loss as well as a night off for a key guy. Here, if Cleveland wins, its because we didn't have Shard. If Orlando wins, Cleveland looks bad.

Speaking of performance enhancing drugs, we may have talked about this in person but I don't know that we have in this space before so I'll ask it again. Over the last 5 years, you find out Tiger Woods AND LeBron James have been using steroids. Which one is a bigger story and which one shocks you personally more?

Speaking of LeBron, what more can he do to convince people he fully intends on leaving Cleveland after this season?

"I signed a contract in 2006 with an option, and it would make no sense for me to sign that contract if I didn't keep my options open," he said. "I'll let you fill in the blanks."

Alright I will. I can't fault him for leaving Cleveland, but wouldn't the Clippers be a much better place for him than the Knicks? Blake Griffin, Eric Gordon, Baron Davis and Bron would make a very formidable lineup. He'd be in a big market, live with better weather and the Kobe vs. LeBron talks would really be interesting with them sharing the same building. Plus he gets out of the Eastern Conference, which along with Boston's trio hitting their mid 50's, would hand the conference to Orlando for the next 10 years. I see no downside to this.

Michael Crabtree is threatening to sit out the entire year. Are WR's trying to one up each other in primadonna-ness? First one complains about a contract they just signed a year ago. Now guys are complaining about the contract they haven't signed yet. Next year, "Star HS receiver X" will refuse to go to Florida/USC because the under the table money contract doesn't meet his needs. Where does it end?

Ben Wallace is headed back to the Pistons. What a summer for the Pistons. 80 million for Ben Gordon and Charlie Villanueva, and now signing a 34 year old Ben Wallace. You can't say the Pistons haven't fully committed to being a 40 win team for the next 3-4 seasons. Good work Dumars.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

An over the hill Scott Rolen? Sign me up!

I'm with you: Detroit getting Washburn was a good move. Hopefully he will help the Tigers pull away from the White Sox/Twins. I know Jake Peavy is the Sox ace in the hole to help them down the stretch, but will he really matter if Washburn pushes Detroit to a 7 or 8 game lead over the next couple of months? I'll tell you a deal I wasn't big on: The Scott Rolen deal. If this was 1999, I'd be absolutely stoked. In 2009? Not so much. Not even a little. For a young team still rebuilding, I don't ever know if there's a reason to trade three 20-something players, including a 22 year old Zach Stewart, known as the best pitching prospect in the Reds organization, for a 34 year old third basemen past his prime. Maybe, just maybe if we were staying afloat in what was a wide open NL Central, this trade is justifiable. At the time of the trade, we were in the midst of a 1-10 slide. We've currently lost 8 in a row and 14 of our last 15. Combined with the news of Edinson Volquez needing Tommy John surgery, this is a time when most teams would shut it down for the year and focus on playing the young legs. Not the Reds. Here's to Rolen turning this team around!

With the news of Manny and Big Papi using performance enhancing drugs, I'm glad that Bronson Arroyo never ran with that unruly crowd.

There's been a lot of talk lately about Kevin Durant potentially passing LeBron James as the game's best player sooner than later and it's not out of the question. I get the sense that LeBron James is a phenomenal athlete who happened to choose basketball, and not surprisingly, excel at it. I feel that Kevin Durant is a basketball player first, and a good athlete second. It's not implausible for LeBron to get complacent with his basketball talents in his attempt to be sports first billion dollar man and a "global icon". Durant is all about basketball for the next 10-15 years. Once his body fills out, I think Durant will definitely give James, Wade, Howard, etc a run for the best player after Kobe retires.

Our old pal Eli Manning has signed a deal to become 107 million dollars richer over the next seven years. Under any circumstances would you give Eli Manning 100 million dollars? A little over a year ago in this very spot, you and I debated over whether Eli was in the top 10 QB's in the league, and now he's the highest paid one? At least the track record for QB's with 100 million dollar deals has to make the Giants feel good:

Brett Favre
Drew Bledsoe
Donovan McNabb
Daunte Culppeper
Carson Palmer
Ben Roethlisberger
Michael Vick

Good luck with that Giants.

Monday, August 3, 2009

Baseball, Beatles, Packers, and Urkel

Sorry for my absence. Let's get down to this...quick hit style.

- Big fan of the Tigers trading for Washburn (who will make his first start tomorrow). We have a good rotation, but we've been having some massive problems with inconsistency. Gallaraga started the season off great, but he's been struggling lately. The same goes for Porcello (whose last start was terrific, but was terrible for about a month previous to that). However, a top three of Verlander, Washburn and Jackson will look pretty good in the playoffs. Now, if we can find some consistency on offense, we'll be set.

- I've been a huge Beatles fan my entire life (as have many others...I realize this is not an original position to be in), and have been one of the few bands that I enjoyed as a child, but still appreciate today. They remain one of the most (if not THE most) influential bands of all time. The first half of their career is the part that Ben referred to when he said that teenage girls loved them. They started as a bar band, playing covers of some of their favorite artists (Buddy Holly, Elvis, etc.). The second half of their career was when they really hit their stride. They stopped touring to focus on recording...and it paid off. They are credited as bringing interest back into the album as a whole (up until that point, most artists recorded an album around two or three great singles and throwing a bunch of filler tracks to make it an album). They incorporated their classical influences into their music like no other band had up until that point ("Eleanor Rigby" was the first pop song to feature nothing but a voice and a string section). They experimented heavily in the studio, doing things that no other musicians during that time were doing. They pushed the limits of pop music further in their time together than anyone could have imagined during that time (the ending to "A Day in the Life" still stands as one of the most powerful pieces of a song I have ever heard).
Like anything recorded a long time ago, it doesn't sound nearly as impressive now as it did. Because their influence is everywhere, we feel like we've heard it all before. Without The Beatles, music would not be where it is today. Every major artist inspires someone...The Beatles seemed to inspire everyone, and I believe they moved music further than any artist before or since then.
I love The Beatles. And, while I don't feel the need to get into a fistfight with you over the topic, I do believe that you should give them another shot. Perhaps I'll put together a best of collection for you to listen to.

- If the Packers were to take Vick, I'd be completely okay with it. Vick for the veteran's minimum to run a handful of plays in the Wildcat formation? Sure...provided he behaves himself. I wouldn't want any, "I should be the starter" nonsense. I don't think he would say anything like that, as he knows that, if he screws up this chance, no one would have any interest in him. It's highly unlikely that he would go to Green Bay, but, if he did, I'd be okay with it.

- It's funny that you mention the downfall of Family Matters, as I talk about that from time to time. I loved that show as a kid (we called into the radio station requesting "The Urkel Dance" so many times that they told us to stop), but got really annoyed once Steve Urkel stepped into his transformation machine and became Stefan Urquelle. That was a terrible day for that show.