New England Just Gets It

26 April 2008

So the Patriots had the 7th pick, and you just knew that it was likely they would trade down.  Why?  That’s their M.O.  So why did they do it?  They moved down three spots where they can get the guy they wanted in the first place.  In the process they moved up from a fifth round pick to a third round pick.  They also saved themselves a couple million dollars by drafting out of the ten slot instead of the seven.  They lost a lot of players defensively this offseason so moving into the third round was a great move. 

With the 10th pick the Patriots selected Jerod Mayo, a linebacker out of Tennessee.  They are very old at linebacker and this certainly addresses a need.  Mayo can play inside or outsidel inebacker, which is also the Patriots M.O.  They like to add players who can play multiple positions.  That flexibility is something Belichick desires.  I thought they would go LB or CB with this pick so  I can’t argue with the selection.  Look for the Patriots to draft some more defensive players with their next few picks.

 | Posted by | Categories: NFL |

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Favre_is_overrated_2007, a friend of mine from Sporting News, suggested Frank Viola.  Here are my findings.



The Numbers
420 Starts
2836.3 Innings Pitched
176-150 Record
.540 Winning %
3.73 ERA (compared to 4.18 League ERA)
1.301 WHIP
1844 Ks
74 Complete Games
16 Shutouts
Two 20 Win Seasons

Playoffs:  5 Starts, 3-1 record, 4.31 ERA, 25 Ks

Awards
1988 Cy Young
1987 Babe Ruth Award
1988 AL Sporting News Pitcher of the Year
1987 World Series MVP
3 All-Star Appearances
Cy Young Votes in 3 Seasons
MVP Votes in 1 Season

Top Ten Finishes
Wins – Six Times (Led league in 1988)
ERA – Five Times
Winning % – Once (Led league in 1988)
Innings - Seven Times (Led league in 1990)
Strikeouts – Five Times
Starts – Nine Times (Led league in 1986 & 1990)
Complete Games – Four Times
Shutouts – Four Times

Sweet Music had a great nickname.  He’s basically Orel Hershiser without the scoreless inning streak. He basically had four really good seasons (84, 85, 88, 90).  He was a real good pitcher, but comes up shy in the Hall of Fame Department.

References
Baseball-reference.com

Past Chronicles
Bert Byleven
Andre Dawson
Dale Murphy
Mark McGwire
Bobby Matthews
Tommy John
Buck O’Neill & Minnie Minoso
Jim Rice
Ted Simmons
Lee Smith
Jack Morris
Al Oliver
Steve Garvey
Jim Kaat
Pete Ro$e
Shoeless Joe Jackson
Dave Concepcion
Lou Whitaker
Alan Trammell
Ron Santo
Ron Guidry
Gil Hodges
Dave Parker
Tony Mullane
Keith Hernandez
Don Mattingly
Dwight Evans
Ralph Houk (Manager)
Jimmie Dykes (Player/Manager)
Charlie Grimm (Player/Manager)
Billy Martin (Player/Manager)
Harold Baines
Gene Mauch (Manager)
Whitey Herzog (Manager)
Tom Kelly (Manager)
Joe Carter
Rusty Staub
Gary Gaetti
Jimmy Ryan
George Van Haltren
Roger Maris
Lance Parrish
Mo Vaughn
Mark Grace
Dennis Martinez
Chuck Finley
Fred McGriff
Wes Parker
Steve Finley
Orlando Cepeda*
Albert Belle
Willie Randolph
Graig Nettles
Luis Gonzalez
Lefty O’Doul
Rocky Colavito
Boog Powell
Jerry Koosman
Mike Cuellar
Edgar Martinez
Brooks Robinson*
Roberto Alomar
Dave Stieb
John Franco
Maury Wills
Sherry Magee
Phil Rizzuto*
Orel Hershiser

* signifies actual Hall of Famers

 | Posted by | Categories: Cooperstown Chronicles, MLB |

Friday, April 25th

Justin Morneau
went 3 for 5 with a Run, a Grand Slam, and 5 RBI.  Jason Giambi hit 2 HRs and drove in 3 runs.  Jose Lopez and Russell Martin each banged out 4 hits.  Johnny Peralta and Kelly Johnson each drove in four runs.  Chris Coste (3 RBI), Gregor Blanco, Manny Ramirez, Kevin Cash, Jeremy Hermida, Mike Rabelo, Carl Crawford (3 runs), and Garrett Atkins each had three hits. 

Jonathan Sanchez allowed 1 run on 4 hits with 10 Ks for his second win of the year.  Braden Looper allowed 2 hits in 7 shutout innings in a no-decision.  Scott Olsen threw 7-1/3 shutout innings for a no-decision.  Yovani Gallardo threw 7 shutout innings with 5 Ks for a no-decision.  Ryan Dempster allowed 2 earned runs in 7 innings with 5 Ks for a no-decision.  Odalis Perez allowed 2 runs in 6 innings with 7 Ks for a no-decision.  Zach Greinke allowed 1 run in 7 innings, but took a no-decision.  Shawn Chacon allowed 1 earned run in 7 innings in a no-decision.  Randy Johnson allowed 1 run in 6 innings with 7 Ks for his 285th career win.  Aaron Harrang went 7-1/3 innings allowing 1 run with 8 Ks, but took the loss.  He’s 1-3 on the year with a 2.76 ERA.  Talk about snakebitten.  Wilfredo Ledezma pitched 3 scoreless innings of relief with 5 Ks.  Cha Seung Baek pitched 6 innings of one-run, one-hit relief with 4 Ks.

Photo courtesy of Icon SMI

 | Posted by | Categories: MLB |

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Photo courtesy of TSN Archives/Icon SMI

Favre_is_overrated_2007, a friend of mine from Sporting News, suggested Orel Hershiser.  Here are my findings.


Photo courtesy of Icon SMI

The Numbers
466 Starts
3130.3 Innings Pitched
204-150 Record
.576 Winning %
3.48 ERA (compared to 3.89 League ERA)
1.261 WHIP
2014 Ks
68 Complete Games
25 Shutouts
One 20 Win Season
59 Scoreless Innings Streak

Playoffs:  18 Starts, 8-3 record, 1 Save, 2.59 ERA, 4 Complete Games, 97 Ks

Awards
1988 Cy Young
1988 Babe Ruth Award
1988 Major League Player of the Year
1988 Sporting News Pitcher of the Year
1988 NLCS MVP
1988 World Series MVP
1995 ALCS MVP
3 All-Star Appearances
Cy Young Votes in 4 Seasons
MVP Votes in 2 Seasons
1 Gold Glove
1 Silver Slugger

Top Ten Finishes
Wins – Six Times (Led league in 1988)
ERA – Five Times
Winning % – Five Times (Led league in 1985)
Innings – Three Times (Led league in ’87, ’88, & ’89)
Strikeouts – Five Times
Starts – Six Times
Complete Games – Seven Times (Led league in 1988)
Shutouts – Five Times (Led league in 1985 & 1988)

The Bulldog was amazing in 1985 & 1988.  That’s an understatement of epic proportions.  His scoreless streak is one of the most impressive individual records out there.  He was fabulous in 1989 but was snake-bitten (15-15 despite a 2.31 ERA).  I wouldn’t exactly say he had sustained greatness though.  If you take away his miraculous 1988 season I don’t even think it’s close.  As much as I loved Orel and what he brought to the game, I’m going to have to leave him short for Hall of Fame entrance.

References
Baseball-reference.com

Past Chronicles
Bert Byleven
Andre Dawson
Dale Murphy
Mark McGwire
Bobby Matthews
Tommy John
Buck O’Neill & Minnie Minoso
Jim Rice
Ted Simmons
Lee Smith
Jack Morris
Al Oliver
Steve Garvey
Jim Kaat
Pete Ro$e
Shoeless Joe Jackson
Dave Concepcion
Lou Whitaker
Alan Trammell
Ron Santo
Ron Guidry
Gil Hodges
Dave Parker
Tony Mullane
Keith Hernandez
Don Mattingly
Dwight Evans
Ralph Houk (Manager)
Jimmie Dykes (Player/Manager)
Charlie Grimm (Player/Manager)
Billy Martin (Player/Manager)
Harold Baines
Gene Mauch (Manager)
Whitey Herzog (Manager)
Tom Kelly (Manager)
Joe Carter
Rusty Staub
Gary Gaetti
Jimmy Ryan
George Van Haltren
Roger Maris
Lance Parrish
Mo Vaughn
Mark Grace
Dennis Martinez
Chuck Finley
Fred McGriff
Wes Parker
Steve Finley
Orlando Cepeda*
Albert Belle
Willie Randolph
Graig Nettles
Luis Gonzalez
Lefty O’Doul
Rocky Colavito
Boog Powell
Jerry Koosman
Mike Cuellar
Edgar Martinez
Brooks Robinson*
Roberto Alomar
Dave Stieb
John Franco
Maury Wills
Sherry Magee
Phil Rizzuto*

* signifies actual Hall of Famers

 | Posted by | Categories: Cooperstown Chronicles, MLB |

Thursday, April 24th
Three-way tie for the top batting honors last night.  Felipe Lopez went 2 for 4 with 1 Run, a Grand Slam, and 6 RBI.  Magglio Ordonez went 3 for 4 with 2 Runs, 2 HRs, and 4 RBI.  Donnie Murphy went 3 for 5 with 3 Runs, 2 HRs, and 4 RBI.  Grady Sizemore had four hits.  Lance Berkman (3 RBI), Chase Utley, Ryan Braun, Bill Hall, Gary Matthews, Jr. (3 RBI), Manny Ramirez, Rajai Davis, Scott Posednik, Victor Martinez, Miguel Olivo, Josh Willingham, Chipper Jones, Yadier Molina, Luis Castillo, Carl Crawford, Adam Jones each had three hits.

Cliff Lee countinued his mastery with a complete game three-hit shutout.  He didn’t walk a batter and struck out 9.  He’s 4-0 with a 0.28 ERA.  Tim Lincecum threw 6-1/3 shutout innings allowing 4 hits while striking out 9 to improve to 4-0 with a 1.23 ERA.  He outdueled Chris Young who allowed 1 run in 7 innings on 2 hits with 10 Ks.  Aaron Cook  8 innings allowing 2 runs on 4 hits with 5 Ks) outdueled Jason Marquis (7 innings, 2 runs, 4 Ks).  On the year Cook is 3-1 with 2.91 ERA.  Zach Miner pitched 3-1/3 innings of scoreless relief to earn a win.  Jamie Moyer (6 innings, 1 run, 4 Ks) and Jeff Suppan (7 innings, 1 run, 3 Ks) each got no-decisions in their pitchers’ duel.  Justin Masterson pitched 6 innings allowing 1 run, but got a no-decision as Boston’s bullpen imploded.  Greg Smith threw 7 innings allowing 2 runs to improve to 2-0 with a 2.88 ERA.  Joel Pinero allowed 1 run on 4 hits in 7 innings with 6 Ks for his first win of the year.  Chad Billingsley allowed 5 runs and took a loss, but he struck out 12.

 | Posted by | Categories: MLB |

Friday Tidbits 4/25/08

25 April 2008


Isiah Thomas finally got fired.  Looks like he owes Matt Millen and Kevin McHale dinner. NBA owners have agreed to allow Seattle to move to Oklahoma City.  KG had his first kid.  LeBron helped Cleveland get off to a 1-0 lead vs. Washington.  San Antonio took the opener vs. Phoenix in Double-Overtime despite 40 from Duncan.  New Orleans stormed back to pound Dallas and take a 1-0 lead.  Chris Paul dominated with 35 points and 10 assists.  Utah took Game 1 vs. Houston.  Dwight Howards 25 point, 22 rebound effort was too much for Toronto in Game 1.  Gasol had a monster game (36 points, 16 rebounds) as the Lakers took the opener vs. Denver.  Philly shocked Detroit in their opener.  Manu Ginobili won the 6th Man Award.  Big Shocker.  Scott Skiles signed a four-year deal to coach Milwaukee.  LeBron messed around and just missed a triple-double as Cleveland took a 2-0 lead over Washington.  Utah took Game 2 90-84.  T-Mac is starting to sweat.  KG took home the Defensive Player of the Year Award.  New Orleans crushed Dallas behind CP3′s 32 points & 17 assists to take a -0 lead.  Dwight Howard (29 points, 20 boards) had his second consecutive 20-20 game as Orlando took a 2-0 lead.  The Spurs got 79 points from their Big 3 to take a 2-0 lead over Phoenix.  Italian star Danilo Gallinari has declared for the NBA Draft.  Vince Carter had a bone spur removed from his ankle.  Detroit fought back in a big way to even their series with Philly.  Boston handily beat Atlanta for a 2-0 lead.  Kobe scored 49 and handed 10 assists as the Lakers took a 2-0 lead.  Larry Brown resigned as Philly’s VP.  Ron Artest had surgery on his thumb.  Toronto (Orlando) and Washington (Cleveland) struck back in their series to avoid going down 3-0.  Tracy McGrady kept the trend of the road team winning as Houston avoided going down 3-0 vs. Utah.  All three series sit a 2 games to 1.


The Rangers sent the New Jersey Devils packing.  Detroit beat Nashville in OT for a 3-2 series lead.  Anaheim survived Dallas in Game 5.  Dallas leads 3-2.  Washington stayed in the hunt with a Game 5 victory over Philly.  Boston forced a Game 7 with Montreal.  Colorado finished off the Wild in Game 6.  Chris Osgood shutout Nashville to close out their series.  Cagary’s Miikka Kiprusoff shutout San Jose to force a Game 7.  Dallas knocked off Anaheim in Game 6 so there will be a new champion this year.  Montreal’s Carey Price shutout Boston 5-0 to send them packing.  Washington took care of Philly in Game 7 behind Ovechkin’s pair of goals.  Nashville extended Coach Barry Trotz’s contract. The Flyers stunned Washington on the road in Game 7 to win the series. San Jose beat Calgary in Game 7 behind Jeremy Roenick’s four-point game.  Montreal beat Philly in OT to take the series opener.  Detroit knocked off Colorado in their opener.


John Smoltz joined the 3000 K Club.The Rays were proactive in signing Evan Longoria to a six-year $17.5 deal with options to make it nine-years, $44 million.  Wise move.  Tom Glavine landed on the DL.  Big Papi hit a Grand Slam. Chipper Jones and Richie Sexson smacked another pair of HRs.  JImmy Rollins landed on the DL.  Toronto released Frank Thomas.  Hanley Ramirez and Chase Utley each smacked a pair of HRs on Sunday.  Chase Utley homered for the 5th straight game on Monday.  Jake Westbrook joined the rest of the league on the DL. Ronny Cedeno and Bobby Abreu each blasted each blasted Grand Slams.  Jacoby Ellsbury smacekd a pair of HRs.  C.C. Sabathia punished those who dropped him going 6 shutout ininings allowing 4 hits with 11 Ks.  The Reds fired GM Wayne Krivsky  and replaced him with Walt Jocketty. Miguel Cabrera is moving to 1st with Carlos Guillen taking over at 3rd.  J.J. Putz returned from the DL.  Josh Beckett and Dice K were both scratches.  The Cubs won their 10000th game.  Gary Matthews, JR. hit a pair of HRs.  Ken Griffey, Jr. hit HR #597.  Greg Maddux pitched lights out, but was still denied win # 350.  Frank Thomas re-joined Oakland.  The buried Big Papi jersey got $175K for charity.  Magglio Ordonez and Donnie Murphy smacked a pair of HRs on Thursday.  Felipe Lopez hit a Grand Slam.  Cliff Lee fired a three-hit shutout to improve to 4-0 with a 0.28 ERA.


Jake Long will be the #1 pick tomorrow.  The Vikings traded their 1st round pick along with two 3rd round picks for Jared Allen.  The Vikes signed him to a six-year, $74 milllion deal.  The NFL reinstated Cincy LB Odelle Thruman.  He hasn’t played in two years.  The Bungles declined Washington’s offer of two first round picks for Ocho Cinco.  I would have said “Deal” rather than “No Deal”.  Carolina’s Mike Rucker and Cincy’s David Pollack have retired.  Seattle cut Shaun Alexander.  Dallas traded a 4th rounder for Pacman Jones.  The Jets traded DL Dewayne Robertson to Denver for a draft pick.

Boston College kicked DE Brady Smith to the curb after he was charge with B & E and sexual assault.  Tennessee QB Jonathan Crompton had his elbow cleaned out.  Florida State WR Preston Parker was arrested on drugs and weapons charges.  Arizona State QB Rudy Carpenter had thumb surgery.  OL Justin Boren left Michigan Sate for Ohio State.

Mempis’ Chris Douglas-Roberts, Antonio Anderson, and Robert Dozier will turn pro.  UCLA’s Luc Richard Mbah a Moute will test the NBA waters.  Drake hire Mark Phelps, who was an assistant at Arizona State, to be its next Coach.  Memphis Assist Derek Kellog will be UMass’s next Coach.  Mississippi State’s Jamont Gordon will enter the NBA Draft.  Texas Guards D.J. Augustin and A.J. Abrams will test the NBA waters.  I don’t know hiow many teams they think are in the NBA.  Sad news to report.  Alabama State G Deshean Porchea collapsed and died following a pickup game.  He was 19.

Boo Weekley won his second consecutive Verizon Heritage Classic.  It’s the only tournament he’s ever won.


Kyle Busch won the Corona Mexico 200.  Danica Patrick won the Honda 300 at Twin Ring Motegi ain Japan to become the first woman to win an IndyCar race.

That concludes the Tidbits. As always feel free to add any stories you liked this week in sports or discuss any of the stories I mentioned.

Thanks again for supporting my blog. Be sure to check out My Blogroll. There are some amazing sites over there.

cooperstown-chronicles.jpg
Photo courtesy of TSN Archives/Icon SMI

mroctobr44, a friend of mine from Sporting News, wanted me to profile Hall of Famer Phil Rizzuto.  Here are my findings.


Photo courtesy of Icon SMI

The Numbers
1661 Games 
5816 At Bats
.273 Batting Average
877 Runs
1588 Hits 
239 Doubles 
62 Triples
38 Home Runs 
563 RBI
149 Stolen Bases

Playoffs:  52 games, 45 Hits in 183 At Bats (.246), 21 runs, 3 doubles, 2 HR, 8 RBI, 7 World Series Rings

Awards
1950 MVP
1950 Major League Player of the Year
1951 Babe Ruth Award
5 All-Star Appearances
MVP Votes in 8 Seasons

Top Ten Finishes
Batting Average – Once
On-Base % - Once
Games – Four Times
At Bats – Three Times
Runs – Three Times
Hits – Once
Doubles – Once
Triples – Three times
Walks – Once
Stolen Bases – Eight Times

The Scooter probably doesn’t deserve to be in the Hall of Fame based on his numbers.  However, how can you overlook the seven World Series titles as a key member of the team?  How can you overlook his work as an announcer for forty years?  He received MVP votes in virtually every season that he played, which shows his worth.  Scooter is the epitome of baseball.  “Holy Cow” does he deserve to be among the greats in Cooperstown

References
Baseball-reference.com

Past Chronicles
Bert Byleven
Andre Dawson
Dale Murphy
Mark McGwire
Bobby Matthews
Tommy John
Buck O’Neill & Minnie Minoso
Jim Rice
Ted Simmons
Lee Smith
Jack Morris
Al Oliver
Steve Garvey
Jim Kaat
Pete Ro$e
Shoeless Joe Jackson
Dave Concepcion
Lou Whitaker
Alan Trammell
Ron Santo
Ron Guidry
Gil Hodges
Dave Parker
Tony Mullane
Keith Hernandez
Don Mattingly
Dwight Evans
Ralph Houk (Manager)
Jimmie Dykes (Player/Manager)
Charlie Grimm (Player/Manager)
Billy Martin (Player/Manager)
Harold Baines
Gene Mauch (Manager)
Whitey Herzog (Manager)
Tom Kelly (Manager)
Joe Carter
Rusty Staub
Gary Gaetti
Jimmy Ryan
George Van Haltren
Roger Maris
Lance Parrish
Mo Vaughn
Mark Grace
Dennis Martinez
Chuck Finley
Fred McGriff
Wes Parker
Steve Finley
Orlando Cepeda
Albert Belle
Willie Randolph
Graig Nettles
Luis Gonzalez
Lefty O’Doul
Rocky Colavito
Boog Powell
Jerry Koosman
Mike Cuellar
Edgar Martinez
Brooks Robinson
Roberto Alomar
Dave Stieb
John Franco
Maury Wills
Sherry Magee

 | Posted by | Categories: Cooperstown Chronicles, MLB |

So I didn’t do that well (I chose New Jersey, and Minnesota)Washington)  in the Opening Round of the Playoffs.  That’s not enough to stop me from making another round of predictions.

Montreal vs. Philadelphia
As much as I’d like to see the Broad Street Bullies continue to surprise, I’m going with Montreal.  Boston foot them tooth and nail, but they shoule know not to understimate anybody the rest of the way.

Pittsburgh vs. New York Rangers
I predicted New York to lose to New Jersey, so it should come as no shock to see I’m choosing Pittsburgh to roll over the Rangers this round.

Detroit vs. Colorado
This should be a fun series.  They have had epic battles in the past.  Problem is Colorado has many of the same players from the original rivalry, which means they are too old to be able to skate with Detroit.

San Jose vs. Dallas
Originally I chose San Jose to win the Stanley Cup.  I haven’t changed my mind yet (although Pittsburgh is close to making the switch).  I say they survive Dallas.

 | Posted by | Categories: Uncategorized | Tagged: NHL, playoffs, Stanley Cup |

Wednesday, April 23rd

Prince Fielder
hit a pair of HRs and drove in 4 runs.  Carlos Guillen went 3 for 4 with 5 RBI.  Torii Hunter, Derrek Lee, Geovany Soto, and Jorge Posada each went 4 for 5.  Dan Uggla, Darin Erstad, Hunter Pence, and Orlando Hudson each had three hits.  Gary Matthews, Jr. and Matt Stairs each hit a pair of HRs.

Chad Gaudin pitched 7 shutout innings to improve to 2-1 with a 3.37 ERA. He allowed 4 hits and struck out 4 batters.  Chris Sampson pitched 7 innings allowing 2 runs with 6 Ks for his first win.  Aquilino Lopez pitched 3 scorless innings of relief for the Tigers with 3 Ks.  His ERA is 0.52.  Andrew Miller allowed 1 run in 5 innings for his first win.  Johan Santana allowed 2 runs in 7 inning while striking out 4 for his 3rd win of the year.  He added two doubles at the plate.  Roy Halladay took the loss, but he threw yet another complete game.  Cole Hamels didn’t pitch extremely well (5 runs in 7 innings), but he did strike out 11.  Mike Mussina went 7 innings allowing 2 runs on 4 hits for his 252nd career win (2nd on the season).  Matt Cain took a no-decision despite 7 innings of one run ball with 7 Ks.  His counterpart, Greg Maddux, fired 7 shutout innings allowing 4 hits with 5 K’s.  He also got a no-decison and was denied win #350.  Daniel Cabrera lasted 8 innings allowing 2 runs on 5 hits with 5 Ks to improve to 2-0.  Carlos Silva allowed 2 runs in 6 innings.

Photo courtesy of Icon SMI

 | Posted by | Categories: MLB |

Time for the 19th installment of the NFL Free Agent Report.  Click here for a link to earlier reports.

Jared Allen
Obviously the big news was the trade and signing of Jared Allen, who led the league in sacks last year.  The Vikings traded their first round pick along with two third round picks for Allen.  He signed a six-year $74 million deal to join the Purple. 

Rashied Davis
The WR/Special Teams star signed a three-year deal with the Bears.  Not bad for a former Arena league player.  He had 17 catches for 165 yards last year and 11 tackles on Special Teams

Pacman Jones
The other big news was the Pacman trade.  He is going to Dallas for a 4th round pick.  If he plays this year, Tennessee could get an additional pick.  If he isn’t reinstated, Dallas will get a 4th round pick next year.  Pacman settled a contract issue with Tennessee where instead of repaying money owed to Tennessee he has to “make it rain” $500K on a charity.  He has also restructured his deal with Dallas so he has no guaranteed money.

Matt Stewart
Arizona signed the LB to a one-year deal.  He didn’t play last year, but in 2006 he had 20 tackles and a sack.  My guess is he’ll be be a Special Teamer.

Nate Washington
Nate signed a one-year deal to remain with Pittsburgh.  Last year the wideout had 29 catches for 450 yards.  He had two 2 TD games last year. 

 | Posted by | Categories: NFL |

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