Monthly Archives: April 2010

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Posted in major league baseball

NFL Draft, Tebow steal the spotlight

[gallery]ubaldo-jimenez

Did we forget that it was baseball season?

In Denver, hype has followed Colorado Rockies pitcher Ubaldo Jimenez since throwing the first no-hitter in Rockies history. How does he reprise his performance? With a dominating win, pitching 7 1/3 shutout innings against the hapless Washington Nationals. While Jimenez is a star in the making in Colorado, the talk of Denver was the news announced across the country, at Radio City Music Hall in New York. The Denver Broncos were on the clock with the 25th pick in the first round of the NFL Draft. The Broncos make the surprise pick of the draft, selecting QB Tim Tebow of Florida, who had been expected to fall into the second round, which resumes tonight on the NFL Network at 6 p.m ET.

So, did anyone notice that baseball was being played in stadiums throughout the land? It was crickets in St. Louis Cardinals news. But at St. Louis Rams headquarters, all was jubilant, as they got their man. Sam Bradford of Oklahoma was not only the first overall pick, but also the first of four Oklahoma Sooners players drafted, when he was chosen by the QB hungry St. Louis Rams. The Rams are in need of the “franchise” quarterback they have lacked since the departure of Kurt Warner.

Did anyone seem to care that Justin Verlander finally shed the 300 lb. gorilla off his back with his first win? Not hardly. People were having a hard time with the name of the 300 lb. gorilla that will dominate for the Detroit Lions defense and even if people weren’t saying his name, they were talking about Nebraska DT Ndamukong Suh. Suh was the first draft pick of the day for the Lions. They made their second pick after trading up from the second round (#34) with the Minnesota Vikings for their first round pick at #30 and drafting Cal running back Jahvid Best.

The fans in Tampa Bay were all abuzz in the second coming of Warren Sapp in the form of Oklahoma DT Gerald McCoy who the Buccaneers selected with the third-overall pick. But hardly anyone noticed the other big news coming out of Tampa. The Tampa Bay Rays and star right fielder Ben Zobrist agree on a 5-year, $30M contract extension.

Jamie Moyer of the Philadelphia Phillies beat the Atlanta Braves 8-3, but everyone was talking about a kid young enough to be the 47-year-old Moyer’s son. At number 13 the Philadelphia Eagles selected DE Brandon Graham of Michigan.

The Pittsburgh Steelers were hoping to fare better than the Pirates did against the Milwaukee Brewers, who lost by a football score, 20-0. Whoever the Steelers starting quarterback is next year, depending on how Ben Rothlisberger saga unfolds, will have some protection from Florida center Maurkice Pouncey who was taken with the 18th pick.

Maybe it is still baseball season. But the distraction was well worth it.

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Poll: MLB performance-enhancing drugs policy

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Stand Up 2 Cancer

On the left hand side of the blog, there is a link to Social Vibe where you can do simple, quick tasks to donate to a cause. I have chosen to endorse the cause “Stand Up 2 Cancer.” My wife … Continue reading

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Reds Edinson Volquez gets 50 game suspension for performance-enhancers

Cincinnati Reds pitcher Edinson Volquez is the latest major leaguer to be suspended for violation of baseball’s drug policy. He will begin a 50 game suspension immediately, despite being on the disabled list. I wrote in Milk, the new performance … Continue reading

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Griffey’s lucky he’s not in Boston

The Red Sox Nation is calling for David Ortiz’s head on a golden platter after a .111 (2 for 18) start. Meanwhile, in “Coffee” Bean Town on the other coast, Ken Griffey Jr. is hitting .211 (4 for 19) for the Seattle Mariners. Neither fading star has hit a homerun yet and each have an RBI a piece.

Dan Shaughnessy of Sports Illustrated wrote an article Boston’s big problem: Big Papi past his prime, no longer everyday DH, in which he states the Red Sox faithful have all but publicly given up on him.

Griffey, on the other hand, is lucky to be in Seattle, where the fans go to Safeco to network behind home plate, sipping an extra foamy latte and eating their garlic fries. Every time the P.A. announcer introduces number 24, the crowd gets manic.

He was once revered as the man who put Seattle baseball on the map, then saved Seattle from it’s second basbeall exodus. That was before an ugly, public divorce. The fans and the media in Seattle that once loved him, ran him out of town.

Fast forward to June 2007. Griffey was making his first appearance at the Safe’ since his 2000 trade to the Cincinnati Reds. Junior was given a hero’s welcome, as the city, the team, the media and the fans rolled out the red carpet for him. After that series Griffey said that he owed it to the fans and the city of Seattle to end his career as a Seattle Mariner.
After having his 2009 club opption declined by the Chicago White Sox following a disappointing season split between the Reds and White Sox, Griffey became a free agent. The Atlanta Braves and Seattle Mariners both made serious offers to the future Hall of Famer. On February 18, 2009, Griffey made his Seattle return official. The club announced a one-year deal and Griffey became the Mariners designated hitter. He hit 19 homeruns in 2009, but hit only .214.

Griffey is more fortunate than David Ortiz. He plays in a city that adores him, and where he can do no wrong. The city and Junior’s parting was mutually painful, but the reunion, so sweet. Even if he isn’t the Ken Griffey Jr. Seattle fell in love with 22 years ago. David Ortiz has always been a hired bat in a place that disposes of athletes that don’t perform and calls for the resignation of management that refuses to bench a struggling, fading star.

The divorce is painful and for Ortiz, there will be no reunion, just a one-way ticket out of town.

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Posted in a.l., a.l. central, a.l. east, a.l. west, a.l. wildcard, american league, atlanta braves, baseball, boston red sox, chicago white sox, cincinnati reds, n.l. central, n.l. east, n.l. west, seattle mariners, sports | Tagged , , , , , , , | 2 Comments