Results tagged ‘ Cowboys ’

Money for nothing and the chicks for free…well, maybe not…

 

Knock me down, dust me off, and get back up…

I never expected the Baltimore Orioles to catch the Yankees in the AL East in the month of September.  All season, I’ve been expecting the O’s to run out of gas and drop off the pace.  It was the Tampa Bay Rays that I was most fearful of.  At one time, the Yanks had what seemed to be an insurmountable lead, but sluggish play in August and now September allowed the O’s to catch the division leaders.

Fortunately, a night later, the Yankees are back up by one game after defeating the Rays, 6-4, while the O’s lost to the Toronto Blue Jays by the same score.

I keep hearing the excuses of injuries but every team deals with its share of setbacks.  It is how the teams respond to adversity that defines the winners from the losers.  After the Yankees had defeated the Orioles in the second game of a recent three-game set (a game the O’s should have won), I thought the Yankees had turned back Baltimore’s threat.  But in the third game, the Yanks fell flat and the O’s walked away winning two of three.  That set the stage for this week’s tie as the Yankees continued to under-perform.

I knew that tonight’s game with the Rays was a “statement” game.  The Yankees needed to show who they are and what we can expect in the coming days and weeks.  It was a close game and less than stellar start for pitcher Hiroki Kuroda, but the Yankees got the all important “W” so that’s all that matters.  Now, they need to continue upon the momentum and kick this into a short (or long) winning streak.

I have been worried that the Yankees didn’t really add any reinforcements at the trading deadline.  Being forced to use Freddy Garcia in the starting rotation or over-exposing aging vets like Andruw Jones, Raul Ibanez and Eric Chavez is not a good thing.  I had been hopeful that either Dellin Betances or Manny Banuelos would step up at some point this year after the season-ending loss of Michael Pineda in spring training, but injuries wiped out the talented duo.

I’d like to think the Yankees have the horses to win the World Series, but I do not.  I think they’ll persevere and win the AL East, but admittedly, I do not feel they’ll advance very deep in the play-offs.  Inferior pitching and the lack of timely hitting will again prove to be their Achilles Heel.  I am still convinced the Texas Rangers will once again represent the American League in the World Series.  Perhaps this is their year to finally win it.  I’d love it if the Yankees got hot and went on a roll that took them deep into October, but I just don’t see it happening.

Aaron Rodgers-Lite, is that too much to ask?…

As we move into the NFL season, it’s tough when your team (Minnesota Vikings) is picked to be on the fast track to a top pick in next year’s draft.  There is talent on the team so I don’t see anything close to 0-16, but Christian Ponder certainly needs to step up his game.  He has the intelligence and the ability to do it so time will tell.  It’s not going to hurt having T Matt Kalil watching his back.  Hopefully, the Vikings can regroup to the point that they are a championship caliber team by the time the new stadium opens.

Win a championship, lose to the Cowgirls…

Well, the NFL Season has opened and the Dallas Cowboys lead the rest of the league by one game.  Let the games begin!

–Scott

 

The Improbable Championship…

 

The 2nd winningest team in baseball history…

Congratulations to the St. Louis Cardinals for their World Series championship over the Texas Rangers.  It was a thrilling World Series, especially the three home run game by Albert Pujols and the edge-of-your-seat Game 6 that saw the Cards eliminate two 2 run deficits with two outs and two strikes in the 9th and 10th innings.  The Cardinals now have 11 World Series Championships, only 16 more needed to catch the Yankees…

2005 Astros and 2010 Yankees were nice, but…

A year after experiencing play-off failure with the Yankees, Lance Berkman achieved his first championship and played a significant role for the team.  I wish the Yankees could have seen the Berkman that played in 2011, rather than the 2010 version, but it wasn’t meant to be.  Berkman made the right choice in selecting the Cardinals over the Rangers in the off-season.

Remember me?…

I kept wondering how Arthur Rhodes felt after spending the majority of the 2011 season with the Rangers before being released in August, only to sign with the Cardinals and help them to the championship over his former team.  Sweet vindication…

I liked the Cowboys, Mavericks and Stars…

I lived in Dallas for 14 years, however, I could never embrace the Rangers.  I am not quite sure why.  I don’t care for the Arizona Diamondbacks after living in Phoenix, but I can attribute that to how rudely fans treated me during the 2001 World Series.  I am not a rude, “in your face”, obnoxious type of fan, but that’s how I was treated simply for wearing a Yankees cap.  Still, I am not sure why the Rangers bother me, but I just am not a fan.  I would prefer to see any of the AL West teams succeed over the Rangers.  So, I did take some satisfaction that the Rangers were SO CLOSE, but ultimately SO FAR AWAY in their quest for the organization’s first championship.  Of course, they’ll be a contender again next year so I recognize that their time may still come.

A signing that makes sense…

It was good to hear that the Yankees and GM Brian Cashman have apparently agreed on a new three year deal that will be announced on Monday.  Wrapping up Cashman before the expiration of his contract was essential for the Yankees to have a successful off-season.  Next up is re-signing CC Sabathia before he exercises his opt-out by midnight on Monday.  I really do not want to see CC hit the open market because it will take away the Yankees focus in finding other pieces to the puzzle.

Plus another signing that would make great sense…

As for free agents, I do hope the Yankees pursue C.J. Wilson.  I recognize that he lost Game 7 of the World Series, however, he is a talented pitcher and I think that he’d excel under pitching coach Larry Rothschild.  A top three rotation of Sabathia-Wilson-Nova would be very competitive.  It’s too bad that Phil Hughes took such a step back this year, and that A.J. Burnett continues to under-achieve.  But I really do not want to go another year relying on the aging arms of Freddy Garcia and Bartolo Colon.  The Yankees have to improve the rotation, and I do not believe that Dellin Betances or Manny Banuelos are quite ready for the challenge yet.

Admittedly, a sense of relief…

Congratulations to Jerry DiPoto for being named the new GM of the Los Angeles Angels, but I still think it’s an injustice that Kim Ng doesn’t get stronger consideration.  She is as well qualified (if not more) than her male counterparts, and she’ll make a terrific GM one day.  If I owned a team, she’d certainly be on my short list of people to hire.  As for DiPoto, it had seemed like he was destined for the Baltimore Orioles just a few weeks ago.  I don’t think they’re top candidates, but I’d hate to lose either Billy Eppler or Damon Oppenheimer to an AL East rival.  So, hopefully, the O’s will either go with an internal candidate or select someone without ties to the Yankees.  I do hope that Eppler and Oppenheimer get recognized for their great contributions, but I’d prefer to see it happen outside of the division (well, except for the Rangers).

Have we seen the end of the term ‘Lovable Losers’ in Chicago?…

I have to admit that I am anxious to see how Theo Epstein and Jed Hoyer put their stamp on the Chicago Cubs.  I hope it doesn’t involve signing free agent slugger Albert Pujols, whom I really hope finishes his career in St. Louis.  But someone like Prince Fielder might make great sense for the Cubs.  I am sure that they’d love to find a way to get out from under Alfonso Soriano’s contract.  While I can’t say that I am thrilled about Alex Rodriguez and view the weight of his contract as an albatross, the Yankees made the right decision in parting with the free swinging Soriano and of course it eventually opened a spot for the Yankees true MVP, Robinson Cano.  I expect Epstein to be aggressive and it will be interesting to watch the 2012 Cubs take shape.  I just don’t see how manager Mike Quade survives, but I could be wrong.  I believe that Ryne Sandberg would be the best field general for the Epstein regime.

My favorite NL team continues to be the Los Angeles Dodgers, primarily because of manager Don Mattingly, but I’ll definitely be pulling for the Cubs as well.  I would like to see them win a championship in my lifetime, well, so long as the opposing team is not the Yankees.

Bright Lights, Great City…

When the Minnesota Twins played their final home game at the end of the regular season, I knew that I was going to miss the magical lights of Target Field from my downtown Minneapolis home.  I don’t know why, but the lights were on at the stadium a few days ago and it is amazing how much they enhance the already beautiful Minneapolis skyline.  I am looking so forward to the lights next April.  However, I recognize that there is still about 50 to 80 inches of snow that stand between me and those lights.  Let the Hot Stove League begin…

 

–Scott

 

 

 

Time for a new Most Eligible Bachelor…

If the reports are true, Derek Jeter will be breaking the hearts of women and girls across the country…

 

 


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According to Newsday and the New York Post, Derek Jeter will marry Minka Kelly on November 5th…right after the end of the World Series.

 

 

 

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The reception will likely be held at Oheka Castle in Huntington, Long Island.

 

 

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It is hard to believe that DJ has finally decided to settle down, but I think he’s made a wise choice with Minka.  From afar, they seem like a very happy couple.  Let’s hope that 2010, all the way around, is DJ’s best yet!

 

 

(l. to r.) Jorge Posada, Andy Pettitte and Derek Jeter from the 2009 World Series Champion Yankees stop by to talk to Dave on the 'Late Show with David Letterman.'

 

Staab/CBS

 

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New York Post

 

Much is being made of the alleged wedding date which ends a day or two after the last possible game for the World Series.  I think Derek will be fine with a night’s rest after he helps the Yankees win their 28th World Championship.  But, of course, my friend Julia will argue that DJ will have several weeks, if not more, to rest up for the wedding following the end of the Yankees’ season.  Well, I guess that’s why they play the games.

 

 

 

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Congrats to Derek and Minka!…if the rumored wedding is true…

 

 

 

 

 

Speculation continues to churn out more names for left field.  I like the one that would put Rick Ankiel and Rocco Baldelli in a platoon.  I do not want to see the team sign an aging veteran like Brian Giles or Jermaine Dye.  But the longer Johnny Damon goes unsigned, the more I get renewed hope that he’ll settle for less and return to the Bronx.  Clearly, his return is the best case scenario.

 

 

 

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The Dallas Cowboys are headed to Minnesota in the divisional play-offs next week.  For me, it is chance for revenge of 1975′s Hail Mary Pass by Roger Staubach as the Cowboys ousted the Vikings from the play-offs.  The 1975 Vikings were a great team, much like the 1998 version, and both of those teams suffered bitter, disappointing losses to end their respective seasons.  Brett Favre has a great deal of experience facing the Cowboys in the play-offs.  Too often, the games were played at Texas Stadium and Favre ended up on the losing end.  However, this time, the game is at home so Favre has a chance for vindication.  After years of watching the Cowboys end his season, he can finally return the favor.  Let’s hope that a trip to the NFC Championship is in store for the Vikings.

 

 

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The Cowboys entered December trying to find post-Thanksgiving success…something that has eluded the team in recent years.  This year, the Cowboys were able to turn it up a notch when the temperatures dropped.  They definitely have momentum on their side following two lop-sided wins over their bitter division rival, the Philadelphia Eagles.  Many experts had predicted that the eventual NFC champion would come from the winner of the Cowboys-Eagles game.  I hope that’s not the case…

 

 

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Hey Julia, only 84 more days until you experience the Red Sox first defeat! ;)

 

 


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Who’s On First?…

“I consider this position I am playing in as a bench role”…

 

 

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These were the words of Yankees GM Brian Cashman on January 6th regarding the current Yankees outfield.  Cashman is apparently looking for a right-handed bat to complement Brett Gardner in left.  Let’s see if these words still hold true on, say, February 23rd.  I guess we’ll check back at that time to see if Cashman held true to his words.

 

An intriguing option in a platoon situation is free agent outfielder Rocco Baldelli.   Rocco has had medical issues the past few years and suffers from channelopathy, but in a limited role, he might be a viable option.  He appeared in only 62 games last season for the Boston Red Sox, batting .253 with 7 home runs and 23 RBI’s.  I don’t know what the future holds for Rocco, but if he can overcome his medical condition, he might thrive in a part-time position.  I am sure the price tag would be enticing to a GM looking to keep the payroll under $200 million…

 

 

Jim Rogash/Getty Images

 

 

I am warming up to the idea of Reed Johnson as a possibility for a potential platoon, but as each passing day goes by and Johnny Damon remains a free agent, I am hopeful that his price tag falls far enough that he fits into Cashman’s budget.  If the Yankees could get Damon to come back for one year, it would be an ideal situation and Johnny could test the free agent waters next fall.

 

 

 

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It’s tough when you pull up a New York paper, and the leading Yankees story is the signing of pitcher Sergio Mitre to a one-year, $850,000 deal.  Okay, I accept that the possibility that Mitre will be significantly improved since he’ll be further from his elbow ligament replacement surgery (July 2008).  But to spotlight him in the New York tabloids is a bit much.  I do not see Mitre as more than a bit player in 2010.   Maybe he’ll prove to be the second coming of Aaron Small but who knows…

 

 

 

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Peter Abraham says that Chien-Ming Wang is ready to move on from the Yankees.  I am still a bit perplexed why the Yankees didn’t try to give Wang one more chance.  Maybe there’s a possibility that he could still return, but I would hate to see him experience a rebirth in Boston (not that they need another starter with that rotation).  Actually, if it were me, I’d go to Seattle.  The Mariners are definitely poised to make a run in what should be Ken Griffey, Jr.’s final year.  The Mariners have made some great acquisitions this off-season.  Sure, they lost Adrian Beltre, but they’ve acquired Cliff Lee, Casey Kotchman, and Chone Figgins.   But like with Damon, I do hope that Wang finds his way back to the Bronx.

 

 

 

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I was sorry to see David Cone leave the YES Network.  There was always something very re-assuring about Coney as a player and as a broadcaster.  I can’t say that I was pleased when he decided to go to Boston to pitch, but he is a class guy.  Whatever the future holds for Coney, I hope that it’s what he wants to do. 

 

 

 

 

Congratulations to pitcher Joba Chamberlain for being a winner of the Thurman Munson Award (which acknowledges excellence in competition and philanthropic work in the community).  The award will be given on February 2nd.  This is definitely a preferable off-season event over a DUI.  I am glad to see Joba’s growth and maturity in a very positive direction.

 

 

 

Sports Illustrated, courtesy of Microsoft

 

 

My weekend football predictions:

 

Cincinnati Bengals 21, New York Jets 17

New England Patriots 31, Baltimore Ravens 20 (Okay, this is for my friend Julia!)

Arizona Cardinals 27, Green Bay Packers 17

Dallas Cowboys 33, Philadelphia Eagles 31

 

The only problem with my predictions is that it would bring the Dallas Cowboys to Minnesota to face the Vikings.  This, of course, is the match-up that has haunted me for many years.  On December 28, 1975, I was watching the Cowboys and Vikings in the NFC Divisional Play-offs.  It appeared that the Vikings had the game in hand until Roger Staubach threw the unbelievable Hail Mary pass caught by Drew Pearson as Nate Wright fell to the ground.   I remember exactly where I was, where I was standing, and my reaction.  Fortunately, I’ve had the Yankees all these years to give me some “relief” from the disappointment…

 

 

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When can we start talking about baseball?…

 

 


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 Let’s Go Yankees!  :)

The End of A Championship Year…

To all the great MLBloggers & Readers…

 

 


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I’d like to wish everyone a very Happy New Year!  I hope that 2010 is our best year yet…one and all!  It’s hard to believe that 2009 has come and gone, and it was quite a year.  However, I am anxious and excited for the possibilities of 2010.  Who knows if the Yankees will repeat or if the Phillies will recapture the crown thanks to Doc Halliday or if the Mariners move into the upper echelon with the brilliant moves to acquire Cliff Lee and Chone Figgins or if the dreaded Red Sox ride John Lackey and company to another championship.  Regardless of what happens, it will be a very fun and exciting year for all of us.  Who knows, maybe next year is this year…

 

 


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Not much sports news to talk about but I’ll try…

 

 

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I think that Jason Bay’s  decision to join the Mets was foolish on his part.  He had a great thing in Boston, and the park was very conducive to his offensive style.  It’s unlikely that he’ll hit 36 home runs playing half of his games at CitiField.  Given his weaknesses defensively and the poor second half that he experienced in Boston, the high expectations in Queens will be very difficult to meet.  Bay could very easily become the player the fans love to hate.  In an era where most of us are simply thankful for a paycheck, Jason will rue the day that he disregarded the very generous offer extended by the Red Sox.  From the Red Sox’ perspective, I don’t blame them for moving on.  The idea of moving Jacoby Ellsbury to left is intriguing given his offensive prowess (so long as he doesn’t move to San Diego in a potential trade for Adrian Gonzalez).  Not that I want the best-case scenario to work out for the Red Sox, but it may have happened when they decided to move on without Bay.  Meanwhile, it probably won’t be long before GM Omar Minaya is fighting for his job because of moves like Bay and other albatross contracts he has hung on the Mets.

 

 

 

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I was not closely following the situation with Texas Tech University and head coach Mike Leach, but at first, I thought that Craig James was just using his position as an ESPN college analyst to blow a situation with his son out of proportion.  However, after getting a better understanding of the facts, there is nothing that would justify locking a kid in a shed.  Regardless of the reasons and aside from the fact that Leach had been very disrespectful to the university prior to the incident, I felt his firing today was justified.  The sad part is that it is the university which will pay the highest price.  Leach will land on his feet with another school because he has proven that he can win.  The Red Raiders, meanwhile, will have to re-establish credibility with potential recruits and find a new coach who can continue the positive advancements made by Leach.  Any way you slice it, it’s a bad situation and a black mark on Big 12 football…

 

 

 

 

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I am a very disenchanted Vikings fan right now.  I have been a fan of the team all my life.  After enjoying several near misses with Fran Tarkenton at the helm, the team has suffered years of championship deprivation.  1998 looked like THE year, however, the season ended in disappointment with the loss to the Atlanta Falcons in the play-offs (a game that the Vikings could have won with better play-calling).  I almost gave up as a Vikings fan after Fran Tarkenton retired and the Vikings named Bob Lee the starting QB.  I know other fans who quit after 1998.  I have to admit that I am nearing the fork in the road once again.  I have never been a fan of head coach Brad Childress and now the team is in a funk that I am not so sure they can recover from.  Sure, 8 Vikings made the Pro Bowl.  However, it means absolutely nothing if the Vikings lose the first play-off game.  Several weeks ago, they were assured of a first round bye and had momentum on their side.  Now, it’s possible that they could lose the first round bye to the Dallas Cowboys.  There are many experts that say the two best teams in the NFC right now are the Cowboys and the Philadelphia Eagles.  It would be hard for me to argue against it.

 

 

 

 

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I recognized football before baseball when I was a kid, so for the first couple of seasons, I was a bigger Vikings fan than I was a Yankees fan.  Of course, that turned rather quickly and I was a baseball fan first by 1975 even though the Yankees had endured many losing seasons under the ownership of CBS.  George Steinbrenner was still a young and inexperienced owner, but I liked the guys on the team.  Catfish Hunter was my idol and Thurman Munson quickly became my favorite Yankee.  Nevertheless, I continued to follow the Vikings but it has never been the same since former owner Max Winter departed the organization.  I like and respect owner Zygi Wilf, however, I think he is making a mistake by staying the course with Brad Childress.  The 2009 team has so much potential, however, it won’t be realized because of Childress.  Put a good coach like Bill Cowher in charge of the team and the Vikings would be challenging the Saints for the best record in the NFC.

 

 

 

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The Vikings can turn things around on Sunday with a solid win against Wilf’s former favorite team, the New York Giants.  However, I am not so optimistic about the team’s chances.  Somehow, I see another lackluster performance with several key Adrian Peterson fumbles.  I hope that I am wrong…

 

 

 

 

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Well, this does it for me in 2009.  I am glad to be among such great MLBloggers and I look forward to a fantastic new year for each and every one of us! 

 

 

 

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