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About Jon
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1) using profanity or any euphemisms for profanity
2) personally attacking other commenters
3) baiting other commenters
4) arguing for the sake of arguing
5) discussing politics
6) using hyperbole when something less will suffice
7) using sarcasm in a way that can be misinterpreted negatively
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Mad Dodgers and Englishmen
2008-11-10 13:04
by Jon Weisman

The newly Frank McCourt-owned Los Angeles Marathon is moving from March to Memorial Day, says Greg Johnson of the Times (via L.A. Observed).

I'm envisioning a big finish for the hot, sweaty marathoners at Dodger Stadium, followed by a twilight ballgame. Alas, the Dodgers are on the road that day ... in Colorado, where perhaps they'll be playing their own Memorial Day Marathon.

Comments (176)
Show/Hide Comments 1-50
2008-11-10 13:12:26
1.   regfairfield
Yet another reason to hate Frank McCourt.
2008-11-10 13:13:39
2.   trainwreck
I cannot remember if Denorfia got hurt or was just sent down. I am guessing hurt.
2008-11-10 13:22:41
3.   ToyCannon
Weather is still nice in May. Not like they are going to running anywhere near the San Fernando Valley.
2008-11-10 13:28:48
4.   Brent Knapp
I'm glad that it was pushed back because I'm behind in my running, but I hate the idea of missing out on the fun of memorial day. Oh what to do.
2008-11-10 13:31:18
5.   Brent is a Dodger Fan
That's a horrible idea. The hotter the race, the more trouble people will have avoiding serious trouble.

It'll make sure that I never run the LA Marathon... My worst was an unseasonably warm summer day in San Francisco, and that peaked at 65 degrees...

2008-11-10 13:35:51
6.   MollyKnight
Bad idea to have a marathon in that heat.
2008-11-10 13:39:47
7.   Dodgers49
Dodgers Mailbag: Questions are Manny

1). If it takes a five-year contract to sign Manny Ramirez, the Dodgers should do it.
2). I was wondering if you don't like Manny.
3). Has any Dodgers player produced as much offense in two months as Manny did?
4). I realize that this could apply to any player, but isn't Jake Peavy possibly another Jason Schmidt?

2008-11-10 13:42:56
8.   Bob Timmermann
Central Library employees rejoice as they don't have to try to go to work on the same day as the Marathon.
2008-11-10 13:46:53
9.   trainwreck
Summer Heights High lived up to my expectations. Already waiting for the next episode.
2008-11-10 13:49:54
10.   trainwreck
A writer from CBSSportsline is suggesting the Rockies may flip Street to the Mets.
2008-11-10 13:56:49
11.   Marty
They should move it to Christmas day. That way it's pretty much guaranteed I won't be anywhere near the route.
2008-11-10 14:23:27
12.   kinbote
Interesting trade. Conventional wisdom seems to be that the A's gave up too much. I'm not so sure. All I know is that Holliday at the all-star break could command a king's ransom.
2008-11-10 14:27:39
13.   regfairfield
12 Do you think half a season of Holliday could get more than a full season.
2008-11-10 14:29:47
14.   trainwreck
I do not think they gave up too much.

Smith has a bad bb/k ratio and is a flyball pitcher.

Street's stuff is not that good and I think his career will really start to decline. If he cannot throw his slider for strikes or get hitters to chase it, he is screwed.

2008-11-10 14:35:12
15.   cargill06
Just curious, where does all this Street is on the deline/we want him closing for our rival talk come from? Sorry, for pointing out 2 people in particular, but everytime he's brought up (not just today) the way people talk about him you'd think he stinks.
2008-11-10 14:36:10
16.   kinbote
13 Perhaps, especially if you have 10-12 teams thinking they are making a playoff push. Also, the A's may value true prospects more than Street & Smith (CarGon is the one true prospect they're including). I believe in Holliday's talent, so I think it's possible they'll have a peaking multi-tool player available for the highest bidder on July 31st. This is one of those classic trading assets for assets trade. Beane must believe he will wind up ahead and I don't doubt him.
2008-11-10 14:36:35
17.   D4P
Via Rotoworld: is reporting that the Rockies are acquiring Street with the intention of moving him to a third team

Kemp/Billingsley/Kershaw/Martin for Street...?

2008-11-10 14:38:41
18.   trainwreck
Had his worst K/BB ratio and worst ERA of his career. His stuff is not that great, so I think he will decline.

Moves from an extreme pitchers park to Coors.

2008-11-10 14:40:58
19.   Eric Stephen
The fact that Street & Smith are together in this trade makes me wish the 3rd player was named Athlon.

I agree with this. I think Street is pretty good, but maybe this is just a reflex I have developed from defending Broxton so much. :)

2008-11-10 14:41:07
20.   kinbote
17 Those prospects are too valuable. ;)
2008-11-10 14:42:53
21.   trainwreck
Broxton has really good stuff though. That is the difference.
2008-11-10 14:43:25
22.   cargill06
18 1 season for a reliever is a very small sample size, in his case 70 IP. I didn't see him throw 1 inning this year, but just by the raw numbers he looks just like every other year with the exception of a few more walks, which is in all likelyhood an abberation as opposed to anything else.
2008-11-10 14:48:43
23.   trainwreck
Yeah, it is mostly based on what I saw from him. That and the fact that he is just another solid reliever to me, makes him not worth a lot.
2008-11-10 14:48:49
24.   Eric Stephen
Street's K/9:

2005: 8.27
2006: 8.53
2007: 11.34
2008: 8.87

How can he not have good stuff and strike out as many hitters as he has in his career? 2007 is looking like the aberration, as he looks more like an 8-9 K/9 guy rather than 10+.

2008-11-10 14:52:47
25.   Eric Stephen
I just saw a stat on ESPN that made me smile: Charlie Weis is 1-15 in his last 16 games against winning teams.
2008-11-10 14:53:28
26.   trainwreck
He has a good slider and then a fastball that is usually 90-92. I don't consider that really good.

Broxton's slider has more bite, but Street can throw his for strikes better.

2008-11-10 14:53:37
27.   D4P
So when he faces a winning team, you're saying there's a chance...
2008-11-10 14:54:40
28.   Daniel Zappala
If not Memorial Day, then it should be on Bob's birthday.
2008-11-10 14:56:26
29.   Eric Enders
26 Street doesn't have a good slider. He has an exceptional one, probably one of the best of all time. Whether that counts as "stuff" or not is open to interpretation, I guess.

He's a good pitcher. The worry with him isn't that he'll stink, but that he'll get hurt.

2008-11-10 14:56:46
30.   Patagent
Is there any chance Holliday signs a long term contract with the A's? I mean if Beane is banking on moving Holliday at the next trade deadline, it seems like a decent risk considering that Holliday might not get off to a great start given the new park/league.
2008-11-10 15:00:19
31.   trainwreck
The problem I saw last year, was that it seemed hitters began laying off it more.
2008-11-10 15:06:10
32.   Bob Timmermann
I saw that game that Notre Dame won against a team with a winning record. In person.

Oh, the humanity!

2008-11-10 15:06:43
33.   KG16
31 - that's the problem with having a great breaking ball. you have to be able to throw it for two kinds of strikes: swinging and called. A lot of pitches out of the zone are swung at and missed. but if it appears that you can't throw your breaking pitch over the plate for a called strike, hitters are less inclined to swing at it.

this duality is what makes Kershaw's breaking pitches so scary. he can throw them for strikes and also throw them so the hitter has to chase.

I haven't seen enough of Street to comment in any meaningful way, but I suspect that, presently, his breaking stuff isn't chaseable.

2008-11-10 15:07:33
34.   kinbote
{Multiple "if" forewarning}

If we don't sign Manny and if Holliday doesn't sign an extension this year, I wouldn't mind seeing Holliday roaming our leftfield in 2010. I see some Gibby similarities in him.

2008-11-10 15:08:01
35.   KG16
32 - calling UCLA a winning team is like calling me a basketball player. sure, i play pick up games on occasion, and i can usually get the ball somewhat close to the hoop, but that's not saying much...
2008-11-10 15:09:37
36.   trainwreck
Olney is saying watch out for the Giants in the CC sweepstakes.
2008-11-10 15:11:09
37.   Bob Timmermann
UCLA was 4-1 at the time when Notre Dame beat them.
They went 2-6 the rest of the way.

And that inspired the Arizona fans to storm the field!
Somebody must have told them that there was free beer.

2008-11-10 15:11:12
38.   trainwreck
Hitters will chase his slider, but not as much as they used to. I noticed the same thing with Zito and his curveball. Hitters seemed to just ignore his curve and sit on fastball.
2008-11-10 15:15:24
39.   trainwreck
Who makes the bigger moves this off-season? Dodgers or A's?
2008-11-10 15:19:21
40.   cargill06
Just stumbled upon this quote from Buddy Bell, anyone up for a cheap chuckle continue to read on.

"There's so much more to this game than just stats and OPS, PMS, whatever it's called," Bell said. "Stats do have some influence on me. I try to look at a minimum of them. Matchups over a course of time. I do a lot of that, and it tells me some stuff. But I have found that knowing the little I do about it, the guys that come up through that system – it's almost like they're too passive. They're not aggressive early in the count. There's probably a stat out there that tells me I'm wrong."

2008-11-10 15:21:56
41.   Ken Noe
Bell was higher than league average in PMS in 1998 and 2002.
2008-11-10 15:22:41
42.   fritts
Adding C.Gonzalez to the Rockies' young offensive core of Tulowitzki, Iannetta, Stewart and Fowler for a year of Holliday seems like a good move. They also get some pitching depth.

If they they moved Hawpe to LF and got rid of Taveras, they would probably improve a lot.

2008-11-10 15:38:31
43.   MC Safety
36 Rule 13!
2008-11-10 15:39:57
44.   Eric Stephen
C Iannetta (age 26 in 2009)
1B Helton (35)
2B Stewart (24)
3B Atkins (28)
SS Tulowitzki (24)
LF Hawpe (30)
CF Gonzalez (23)
RF Fowler (23)

SP Cook (30)
SP Francis (28)
SP Jimenez (25)
SP Morales (23)
SP Smith (25)
SP Reynolds (23)
CL Street (25)
RP Corpas (26)
RP Buchholtz (27)

I don't think this is a bad team. Gonzalez and Fowler dramatically improves the outfield defense. The lineup as it stands now has above average fielders at every position except 3B & LF. It will be interesting to see if Atkins is trade bait. He is arb eligible the next two years. Keeping Ian Stewart at 2B could be intriguing; he was +2 in 93 innings there last year. Stewart is kind of a better DeWitt in a similar situation.

2008-11-10 15:48:09
45.   regfairfield
44 They have the same problems as last year still. Their pitching is pretty bad and if anyone gets hurt they have nothing of any value to replace them with.
2008-11-10 15:56:31
46.   Bob Timmermann
Reports out of the Boston Globe state that Shea Hillenbrand is trying to make a comeback.

Woo hoo!

2008-11-10 15:58:09
47.   Eric Enders
45 The pitching is pretty bad only if you assume Francis and Morales are going to be as bad as they were this year. If those guys can pitch the way they did in 2007, Colorado has four good starters.
2008-11-10 15:59:14
48.   Eric Enders
Shea Hillenbrand has a better chance of finding a hippopotamus in his back yard than he does of making a major league comeback.

What? Oh.

2008-11-10 16:24:43
49.   ToyCannon
Who does at this point? Until rosters are complete everyone looks thin. The core is solid and if they flush things out right they should easily compete with us. It is not like we will be having Rafy, Manny, Lowe, and Penny playing for us.

Penny made the top 20 list of top free agents by Yahoo's Jeff Passan. Even if he is overvaluing him, I still think he had plenty of trade value at the cost of that salary.

2008-11-10 16:30:26
50.   Jon Weisman

Show/Hide Comments 51-100
2008-11-10 16:32:51
51.   regfairfield
49 Good point.
2008-11-10 16:33:07
52.   MollyKnight
I thought we all knew that Street was finished. And if we didn't all already know that, Billy Beane shipping him to Colorado should solidify it.

Fork. Toaster. Over.


2008-11-10 16:33:48
53.   MollyKnight
Any chance we can sign Manny, Furcal, AND CC?


2008-11-10 16:35:29
54.   Eric Enders
Molly has been reading my offseason playbook.

Unfortunately this book can be found at Barnes & Noble in the "Fantasy" section.

2008-11-10 16:53:13
55.   Bob Timmermann
So that's what happened to Daphne Zuniga?
2008-11-10 16:55:39
56.   fanerman
54 Is it a "Choose Your Own Adventure" book?
2008-11-10 16:57:47
57.   ToyCannon
We could, we won't sign any.

Any UCLA fans want to make some friendly wagers on who finishes higher in the rankings this year between UCLA and Gonzaga? I'm expecting big things from Daye this year and now that Heytvelt has gotten the mushrooms out of his system he can go back to being a force. We still owe you for making Adam cry.

2008-11-10 16:59:37
58.   Eric Stephen
We could, we won't sign any

This sounds like another wager!

2008-11-10 17:03:18
59.   Eric Enders
Gonzaga's going to be a beast. I wouldn't take UCLA over them. They have a loaded veteran team and two potential first-team All-Americans in Daye and Pargo. It's probably the best Gonzaga team ever and that's saying something.
2008-11-10 17:09:23
60.   bigcpa
Scott Olsen & Willingham to the Nats for Emilio Bonafacio and single-A chaff. So Rauch for these two.
2008-11-10 17:14:09
61.   Tripon
I thought Emilio Bonafacio was going to be the Nats 2nd baseman of the future.

Bowden was busting the Dodgers chops for not trading DeJesus for Rauch, and he flips the piece he got first chance he gets.

Anyway, does this mean that Dan Uggla's days with the Marlins are done, or he's moving positions?

2008-11-10 17:15:16
62.   ToyCannon
That can't be possible. Is that being reported as a final deal?
2008-11-10 17:15:25
63.   Brent Knapp
57 I think UCLA is going to be better than expected. I don't know much about Gonzaga other than I enjoyed watching Morrison's last college moments on the court.
2008-11-10 17:18:12
64.   ToyCannon
Not that I'm a big fan of Bonafacio but the Diamondbacks probably wish they still had him instead of nothing.

I think a healthy Tony Abreu runs rings around him.

2008-11-10 17:19:18
65.   ToyCannon
UCLA expectations are kind of high. They are ranked in the top 10 in the preseason.
2008-11-10 17:19:56
66.   ToyCannon
Who do you think we sign of those three?
2008-11-10 17:20:37
67.   Harold M Johnson
Wow, Uggla has struck out 461 times in 1774 career ABs. Career OPS+ of 115.
2008-11-10 17:23:26
68.   Brent Knapp
65 I know, I have been spoiled the last couple years. I just opened up my sporting news and it has them as the 8th team in the country. Part of me can't imagine them going to a fourth final four in a row, but then again its hard to imagine them not doing so. As our football team is absolutely horrible I'll take some action on basketball.
2008-11-10 17:23:55
69.   ToyCannon
If Ned had ever lost an Uggla to the Rule V it would make the Werth/Victorino/Double Ross growling the difference between the hiss of a house cat and the full bass throttle of a Male Lion.
2008-11-10 17:29:12
70.   bhsportsguy
68 UCLA did lose 3 starters and with Mata graduating, their post play defense will be an ongoing issue all year.

That said, UCLA does have its best perimeter play depth since the Bozeman, Farmar, Afflalo, Collison, and Roll team but Gordon and Morgan are going to have grow up fast to make them a factor this year.

2008-11-10 17:29:23
71.   Eric Stephen
At least one of Manny & CC. I don't think the market will materialize for Manny, and his deal won't be for much more than the current offer.

If Manny's contract is backloaded as reported ("only" $15m in 2009), I think that frees up CC money too.

2008-11-10 17:43:57
72.   Eric Stephen
Before I saw the stats, I would have though "The Hammer" Willingham was a butcher in the OF, but his defense took a surprising (repeatable?) turn upward:

2006: -6 (27th in MLB)
2007: -18 (30th)
2008: +10 (6th; in only 855 innings)

Both Olsen and Willingham are eligible for arbitration for the first time, so it appears Florida will attempt a $20m payroll again. Bonifacio has three more years before being arb eligible, so he fits into their "plan."

2008-11-10 17:51:45
73.   Eric Enders
Baseball-wise that's a good trade for Washington, since it's doubtful Bonifacio will ever learn to hit. I'm not sure it makes sense for the Nats though once you take the players' salaries and the state of the franchise into consideration. Olsen and Willingham will help them become a 90-loss team instead of a 95-loss one. What's the point?
2008-11-10 18:00:45
74.   Eric Stephen
Via the B-R Bullpen, I found this great quote from Preacher Roe himself:

"I got three pitches. My change, my change off my change, and my change off my change off my change."

2008-11-10 18:01:12
75.   Tripon
73 The Nats have been rumored to trying to make a big splash for free agents this year. This certainly shows they're trying, and its not like the Nats are owned by beggars, they're owned by stingy people who have money but don't care to spend it. They can afford Olsen and Willingham, at least until they hit FA.

I personally think this move is the difference between .500 in 2009, and losing 95 games. Also, say hello to Adam Dunn to the Nats.

2008-11-10 18:04:06
76.   Eric Stephen
How are Olsen & Willingham worth 14 wins?
2008-11-10 18:10:56
77.   Tripon
76 Improvements from Milledge, Dukes, addition of Olsen & Willingham plus better 1B play from a Texiera(unlikely) or Adam Dunn(more likely) signing can mean 14 more wins.

That, and it's the NL East. The Phillies aren't going to be as good as they were this year, the Mets bullpen is going to struggle again, and the Braves and Marlins are either going to regress or stay where they are. I can see the Nats making progress to... well, not the playoffs, but progress nonetheless.

2008-11-10 18:11:22
78.   Eric Stephen
Preacher Roe has the highest winning percentage in Dodger history (minimum 37 decisions):

2008-11-10 18:30:37
79.   MC Safety
Dirtbag fans gotta love Tulo and Longoria getting ROY back to back years. That's pretty cool.
2008-11-10 18:34:53
80.   Gen3Blue
The Dodgers offense will get better for the next several years. The core insures this, and even Furcals and Manny's PA's this year were not enough to cancel this effect out.
My question is whether their young pitching can offset the loss of Lowe and Penny. It might make sense to try to bring Lowe back.
2008-11-10 18:42:37
81.   Eric Stephen
Did Tulo have OJ go over to Ryan Braun's house to steal his award?
2008-11-10 18:43:54
82.   Tripon
Is Ryan Bruan already a better player than Prince Fielder?
2008-11-10 18:50:13
83.   MollyKnight
2008-11-10 18:50:57
84.   Eric Stephen
Now that he's in LF, I'd say yes.
2008-11-10 19:01:29
85.   MC Safety
81 Lol. Um, yeah. Not quite sure what I was talking about.

So....that's some football game on tonight, huh?

2008-11-10 19:25:25
86.   Eric Stephen
End of Hells Bells in San Diego?

The Padres withdrew their $4m contract offer to Trevor Hoffman.

2008-11-10 19:28:38
87.   Tripon
86 is Hoffman a type-B, or type-A FA?

I'd say the Angels make a quick offer to Hoffman.

2008-11-10 19:30:34
88.   Eric Stephen
Type B
2008-11-10 19:32:52
89.   Tripon
The Yankees are intrigued by the leadership abilities of Mike Cameron, Aaron Rowand and several others, but is it Jim Edmonds who some team insiders believe is the proper target. There have been more than one Edmonds/Brain Cashman flirtation over the years, and for different reasons, the two have never been able to pull off a deal.

"He's the next coming of (Paul O'Neill)," said one team exec. "We really think he's the answer to a lot of our problems, and with him in center and Johnny Damon in left, we'll cover a ton of ground and get some offense out of there as well."

What!? Torre said that Ethier was the next Paul O'Neill. We must get to the bottom of this!

2008-11-10 19:36:22
90.   Bob Timmermann
If Jim Edmonds is the answer for the Yankees, I'm not sure what question they are asking.
2008-11-10 19:39:05
91.   Tripon

Posted the wrong link.

2008-11-10 19:43:08
92.   El Lay Dave
Jim Edmonds is fully capable of putting up the same age 39 season as Paul O'Neill did.
2008-11-10 19:46:29
93.   Tripon

92 so Jim Edmonds retires in 2009?

2008-11-10 19:52:04
94.   El Lay Dave
93 He's certainly capable of that.
2008-11-10 19:53:15
95.   Eric Stephen
Maybe Edmonds can slow up while walking to the podium at his retirement ceremony, so he has a reason to dive.
2008-11-10 20:02:18
96.   underdog
Jim Edmonds will definitely be more productive next year than Paul O'Neill will be, so there's that.

I'm sorry, didn't he look like his defensive skills had declined radically last season?

Yep, the Yankees are not asking the right questions if that's an answer. Rowand would be more productive and if they're going for old outfielders, Cameron would be better.

2008-11-10 20:03:18
97.   Tripon
Why would anyone want Rowand with 4 years left on his contract?
2008-11-10 20:04:41
98.   Eric Stephen
I'm sorry, didn't he look like his defensive skills had declined radically last season?

Yep. Using +/-:

2006: +2
2007: -11
2008: -20

And he hasn't played more than 103 games in CF since 2005.

2008-11-10 20:33:49
99.   underdog
I was bored and doing some cleaning in the back of my place, so I had the MNF game on the radio, with the local Niners broadcast. I forgot how bad those guys are. You know what's as annoying as announcers like Rick Monday who won't tell you the score? Announcers who will tell you the score but won't say who's winning. I happened to know already, but I still noticed when Joe Starkey finally gave the score, as the Cardinals had the ball, as 24-23, but didn't say who had what. Then when they punted and the Niners got the ball, as it went to an ad Starkey said, "Close tense game, still a one point game." And... ad.

Then they came back and he talked about how close it is and how the Niners would like to not only drive down the field but take time off the clock as it's a one point game.

WHO is winning, Starkey?

I guess maybe he realized I didn't care who was winning.

2008-11-10 20:46:03
100.   Tripon
But I also believe that, while Coors/non-Coors splits are something to note, like always, no numbers are universal proof of anything, just as raw numbers. (Sorry, FJM!)

Guess we know now that Kawakami reads FJM.

Show/Hide Comments 101-150
2008-11-10 21:15:48
101.   Bluebleeder87
Looking at Matt Holliday's #'s (to me) he seems like a 25 dinger guy out side Coors field (maybe 30 long balls?) but what was more surprising to me was that he stole 28 bags & got caught stealing only 2 times 2 TIMES!?!?
2008-11-10 21:24:46
102.   Eric Stephen
Holliday is a great baserunner. On Bill James Online, he was rated 3rd in 2008 in overall net bases gained (through steals and baserunning):

Willy Taveras +70
Ichiro Suzuki +56
Matt Holliday +52
Grady Sizemore +50
Jimmy Rollins +46
Nate McLouth +44
Ian Kinsler +41
Randy Winn +41
Jacoby Ellsbury +40
Carlos Beltran +35

The list is mostly speed guys, and Holliday.

2008-11-10 22:00:58
103.   ToyCannon
Hoffman at 4 mill would be a decent play for the Angels. The AL might not know what to do with his change up while Arrendondo gets a taste of closing.

I guess having great baserunners doesn't equate to wins. Of the top ten only Rollins played on a playoff team. I doubt we would see the same results for top OPS/Slug%/OB%. So I thought I'd check and I'd been wrong. Of the top 10 OPS+, only Manny, Teixeira, and Quentin were in the playoffs. Two were traded. How bizarre. For Slug% add Youkilis and subtract Teixeira. For OB% add JD Drew and subtract Quentin.

Did Ludwick have the greatest 29 year old season in history for someone who had hit only 28 home runs by age 28?

2008-11-10 22:01:42
104.   KG16
38 - that's probably the drawback to only have three pitches, and probably the reason I'd be worried about a certain once mythical beast. I really don't like the idea of a starter having only two or three pitches, especially if he doesn't have the confidence/ability to throw all of them for called strikes.
2008-11-10 22:11:28
105.   Eric Stephen
Did Ludwick have the greatest 29 year old season in history for someone who had hit only 28 home runs by age 28?

Edgar Martinez had 27 career HR before his .343/.404/.544 (164 OPS+) in 1992.

Wade Boggs had 32 career HR before his .363/.461/.588 (173 OPS+) in 1987, but he was already established as a great player before then.

2008-11-10 22:16:56
106.   Dodgers49
An interesting article on Nate Silver (not meant to be a Rule 5 violation):

Finding Fame With a Prescient Call for Obama

2008-11-10 22:49:56
107.   Dodgers49
Like it or not, Scott Boras is baseball's Mr. November

>> Lost in all this emotion and faulty finger-pointing is that Boras understands the economics of greed better than all the rest of us. It is a greed that includes, but is not limited to, the commissioner's office, team owners, players, fans and even the media. <<

2008-11-10 23:01:16
108.   PDH5204
79 I don't think that many will quarrel with the winners, but the BBWAA is surely a clueless lot. Jacoby Ellsbury gets more points than Mike Aviles and Armando Galarraga? Both Aviles and Galarraga should otherwise have received more votes than Alexei Ramirez as well. As I said, BBWAA = clueless.
2008-11-10 23:04:21
109.   Dodgers49
Angels play waiting game with Mark Teixeira

>> The Angels also plan to make a serious run at free-agent pitcher CC Sabathia <<

2008-11-10 23:08:40
110.   Eric Stephen
Speaking of Mr. November, Pete Carroll's Trojans have had quite the stingy defense this season, allowing only 6.7 points per game (including giving up 27 in a loss to OSU).

Right now USC has the 4th best average margin of victory in school history (dating back to 1888):

1) 1929 - 35.3 difference (41.0 - 5.8)
2) 1889 - 33.0 (33-0 -- only two games)
3) 1930 - 31.6 (38.2 - 6.6)
4) 2008 - 31.0 (37.7 - 6.7 through 9 games)

2008-11-10 23:24:14
111.   ToyCannon
Such a shame they lost to someone in the pathetic Pac 10 conference. Do these margins of victory mean squat playing in this pathetic conference? Boise State could probably beat everyone but USC. Let us see what their defense could do against a real offense. Get ND off the schedule and play a real out of conference team.
2008-11-10 23:36:10
112.   Eric Stephen
I have no defense of the Pac-10 this year. Except for the exceptional Oregon State team, of course. :)

What I find interesting is that let's say the SEC champ (Florida or Alabama) has two losses. Then there is a possibility that the top 3 teams in the BCS could be Big XII teams (if Oklahoma beats Texas Tech so the big 3 each have one loss). That has to be a nightmare scenario for the BCS, but it could happen.

Essentially, USC's only hope is that the human voters (2/3 of the BCS) don't vote the other two Big XII South teams 2 or 3 since they didn't reach their championship game. It will be a longshot for USC, but stranger things have happened.

2008-11-10 23:38:15
113.   Eric Stephen
By the way, I don't personally have a problem with, for instance, three teams in one conference having the 3 top-rated teams. But it's probably unfavorable from a BCS standpoint, since undoubtedly other conferences would be angry.

Perhaps angry enough to overhaul the system?

2008-11-11 01:18:46
115.   ToyCannon
I assume you are in the wrong thread?
2008-11-11 01:35:28
116.   Greg Brock
115 I assume you're in the wrong thread?

Is that a statement or a question?

Or did somebody slip a question mark into your teleprompter, Ron Burgundy-style.

I'm Ron Burgundy?

2008-11-11 02:14:32
117.   thinkblue88
happy end of wwi day.
2008-11-11 05:52:31
118.   Ken Noe
Interesting story via SOSG; Arizona is laying off 31 employees--9 percent of their total staff--due to "rising expenses and a sluggish economy."

2008-11-11 06:16:07
119.   D4P
Meanwhile, schmucks like Andruw Jones have guaranteed contracts for $18 million a year.
2008-11-11 06:26:52
120.   Ken Noe
118 In this economy, we may finally find out soon if and how McCourt is overextended. I've already suggested that the PR offers to Manny and Furcal, plus dropping Penny, may be more about pooling funds than anything else. Any signs of life on the stadium project?
2008-11-11 06:39:00
121.   D4P
And this from San Diego:

The Padres are in the midst of making a dramatic cut to their payroll, at a time when owner John Moores is going through a difficult and costly divorce. The San Diego payroll was about $74 million in 2008, and if they complete a trade of pitcher Jake Peavy, as expected, and eventually swap outfielder Brian Giles, their payroll -- now reduced by the departure of Hoffman -- will be cut by about half.

Might be time to sell the team, buddy.

2008-11-11 07:13:41
122.   oshea2002
121 - some local SD radio guys are claiming that Lucchino, who I think lost his power struggle with Theo, is going to try and get an ownership group together to buy the Padres.

My dad is a huge Padres fan, he's been saying that Moores' divorce would ruin the team for a good 6 months now. If you can't run the franchise, then sell.

2008-11-11 07:37:13
123.   Daniel Zappala
I am certainly hoping that the Angels do not sign Trevor Hoffman.
2008-11-11 07:40:07
124.   Daniel Zappala
112 I think it's absurd that USC is reduced to hoping a bunch of people vote a certain way. This is how a national championship is decided? I've decided to ignore any talk of champions and just enjoy good football games, because that's all the system can hope to give us.
2008-11-11 07:58:14
125.   ToyCannon
Even if USC wins out does anyone who is not partial really believe they deserve a shot at the Championship game?
2008-11-11 07:59:41
126.   ToyCannon
Why, he is not pretty but he gets the job done and the cost would be cheap and short? Type B free agent who cares.
2008-11-11 08:08:56
127.   Eric Stephen
Impartially, if every team had one loss, I would put Texas, Texas Tech, Oklahoma, and Florida ahead of USC.
2008-11-11 08:11:06
128.   oshea2002
125, 127 - what's your criteria? Who'd win on a neutral field, or who deserves it? I'd take us in the former against anyone with a tossup against UF, but we're down the list in the latter.

If the pollsters follow their edict from the last 2 years, they'll leap us over the Big 12 teams that don't make it to KC. Then we need Mizzou to win. I'm not sure how realistic this is.

Our best shot, IMO, is UF loses to FSU, then blasts Alabama.

2008-11-11 08:12:31
129.   Eric Stephen
Our best shot, IMO, is UF loses to FSU, then blasts Alabama


2008-11-11 08:22:24
130.   Xeifrank
114 seems a little Rule V-ish.
vr, Xei
2008-11-11 08:24:26
131.   Disabled List
USC is not going to go to the title game, and they don't really deserve to go. The Pac-10 is simply awful this year, and that was an underwhelming win against Cal last week. But cheer up: Penn State vs. USC will make for a terrific Rose Bowl.

As of right now, Florida and Texas Tech are the best teams in the country, with Alabama a close third. The SEC title game is going to be absurdly good, as is the TT-Oklahoma game next weekend. This has been one of the most entertaining college football seasons I can remember. Every Saturday this season has had a game of critical, lose-and-the-season's-over importance. The BCS is not perfect, but I don't want to hear any more talk about how college football needs a playoff. It most certainly does not.

2008-11-11 08:28:33
132.   Daniel Zappala
126 Mainly because he's 40, turning 41 next season.
2008-11-11 08:30:55
133.   D4P
Jamie Moyer is 45.

Jamie Moyer!

2008-11-11 08:31:21
134.   Daniel Zappala
127 I'd put Alabama up there too, and it's not clear to me that USC is that much better than Penn St., Georgia, and Missouri. I'd love to see BYU or Boise St. play USC so I could calibrate the MWC and WAC.
2008-11-11 08:32:15
135.   Eric Stephen
I'm normally not on the playoff bandwagon, but if Oklahoma wins this weekend, how can you decipher between these three teams:

Texas: one loss at Texas Tech
Texas Tech: one loss at Oklahoma
Oklahoma: one loss vs Texas

That's a tough call.

2008-11-11 08:32:29
136.   Daniel Zappala
131 I'm not arguing college football needs a playoff, just that it's absurd to consider the BCS a system that crowns a champion.
2008-11-11 08:32:43
137.   LogikReader
As an SC fan, I've come to the point where going to the Rose Bowl is a "disappointment". Call me spoiled, but I always feel like this team loses to a bad team once every year.

Let's review: Last year it was Stanford. The year before it was UCLA. The year before that it was Texas in the then championship game (happened to be the Rose Bowl).

Even though Offensively they've been mediocre for three years, I feel like they're good enough to hang with the best teams. It's just such a shame they have to resort to rooting for other teams to help them. I'd rather be USC right now than a lot of teams, but still, I wish USC would take their regular season more seriously.

2008-11-11 08:33:52
138.   LogikReader
ooooooh, I should clarify: Texas was not a bad team in 2005. However, they were an inferior team to USC, and I doubt anyone would argue with that.
2008-11-11 08:38:44
139.   Eric Stephen
As an SC fan, I've come to the point where going to the Rose Bowl is a "disappointment"

I hope I never see that day. Just think of the Paul Hackett Era, and you will gladly appreciate a Rose Bowl birth. One, might I add, that is not yet set since Oregon State needs to lose one of its final three games.

2008-11-11 08:38:53
140.   oshea2002
131 - I agree the Pac 10 is terrible, and I don't think USC deserves to go over a 1-loss SEC or Big 12 champ. In defense of USC, we played Ohio State, ND, and at UVA. I'm not sure what more SC can do short of not scheduling Nonconf games in advance and just last second scheduling the SEC and Big 12 champ from the year before (which of course isn't realistic) I wouldn't completely write off our chances though, it could be as simple as Mizzou or Florida State winning one game. I do agree with you on Florida. I think they're the best team in the country too, they look awesome on both sides of the ball. Tech has played three awesome games in a row following two terrible games. If they win in Norman, I'll believe they are there with UF.

I disagree on Alabama. If USC's Cal win was unimpressive, that's how I look at Alabama's entire season. LSU should have won that game by 3 TD's, and they aren't that good. Alabama scored 1 offensive TD and had 170 total yards at home v. Tulane. They beat Kentucky at home by 3. They beat Mississippi at home by 3. My best friend from law school went to school at Bama and even walked on for a year - he calls them the worst undefeated team in SEC history. I think UF is going to win that game, big, like 35-7 type big.

Here's my beef with the Big 12, and why I think we need a playoff. Do we really know that those teams are all that good? Oklahoma State, Texas, and Texas Tech all played no one with a pulse out of conference - the best win the three of them combined for is Nevada. OU played Cincinnati and TCU at home, good teams, but basically BCS buster type teams - ala a Fresno State or something. I'm not saying they aren't all good teams, but we really don't know since their resumes exist solely of playing each other. If there's an 8 team playoff, they either rise up, or get exposed. But in this system, there's likely to be a three way tie, and then the BCS computer will arbitrarily decide which of the three goes to KC, so to me it seems like assumptions/guesses layered on top of more assumptions/guesses.

2008-11-11 08:39:01
141.   Daniel Zappala
137 There is no shame in losing to Stanford. :-)
2008-11-11 08:41:16
142.   Disabled List
136 Without a playoff, the best way to put the top two teams together in a de facto "championship game" is to get a bunch of informed, knowledgeable, dispassionate football experts together and have them pick two teams. Which is sort of what the BCS is.

Like I said, it's not a perfect system. And it's certainly stands to be tweaked and improved (first up: no polls of any kind before mid-October or November, and get the coaches out of the polling business altogether). But if we want to keep the drama of the regular season intact by forgoing playoffs, I can't think of any better way to do it.

2008-11-11 08:41:45
143.   oshea2002
137, 139 - as a student during the "he shall who not be named" era, I'll never look at the Rose Bowl as a disappointment. Losing to inferior Pac 10 teams is a disappointment, the reward for winning our conference will never be a disappointment to me.

That said, I'd love to get a shot at another conference in a different BCS bowl, I think we'll blast Penn State. I want to win the Pac 10, but there will be a bright side if Oregon State wins out.

2008-11-11 08:44:50
144.   Daniel Zappala
142 Fine, it's just not a "championship" when it's decided that way. As 140 attests, I don't think we can properly determine how to rank teams when they don't play a schedule against enough other good teams.
2008-11-11 08:46:49
145.   Eric Stephen
it's not clear to me that USC is that much better than Penn St., Georgia, and Missouri

The Missouri one stings a little bit. Sure, the Pac-10 is way down this year, but looking at USC's entire schedule, the 9 teams they've played average 28.7 points/game in their non-USC games. USC has held their opponents to 6.7 points per game. The defense has been suffocating this year (and yes, I know they laid an egg against a midget named Jacuzzi in Corvalis).

If they are fortunate enough to get to the Rose Bowl, they will wipe the floor with Penn State.

2008-11-11 08:47:37
146.   Disabled List
140 The Big 12 dilemma this year is giving lots of heartburn to non-playoff advocates like myself. I agree, it's going to be nearly impossible to choose which team deserves to go to the title game, and I also agree, it's going to suck mightily for whichever teams get left out. But them's the breaks. They all had their chance during the regular season to settle the issue, and at some point or another, they blew it.

And no, it's not USC's fault that the Pac-10 is so horrible. But them's the breaks too. The Trojans can have all offseason to ponder how one loss early in the regular season cost them a shot at the national championship.

No sport has a regular season as important as college football's. I'd like to keep it that way.

2008-11-11 08:48:44
147.   Eric Stephen
That said, I'd love to get a shot at another conference in a different BCS bowl

A USC-Alabama Orange Bowl for instance? That would be pretty sweet.

2008-11-11 08:49:01
148.   Marty
138 You are going to get an argument from Mr. Enders.

I'm the biggest USC booster on this board I think and this year's team doesn't deserve any BCS championship talk. They'll be in a BCS bowl and that is about as much as you can hope for from this team. It will be fun at draft day to see a few of them go in the first round, but this "team" is a huge disappointment based on pre-season hype.

2008-11-11 08:49:18
149.   Daniel Zappala
145 Missouri doesn't have USC's defense, but they have a great offense. Their only two losses are to Oklahoma St. and Texas.
2008-11-11 08:52:12
150.   LogikReader
That said, I'd love to get a shot at another conference in a different BCS bowl, I think we'll blast Penn State.

Bingo. Eric is right too, because I lived through the Hackett era and I will always appreciate going to the Grandaddy of them All.

But the usual disappointment is in always playing a Michigan or an Illinois. I'm eager to see how USC does in a bowl game against an SEC team. It would be fun to see. By the way, I don't think it's ever happened in the BCS era.

Show/Hide Comments 151-200
2008-11-11 08:52:18
151.   Daniel Zappala
When USC goes to a BCS bowl in a down year for the Pac-10, with one loss, and a bad one at that to Oregon State, remember that BYU has one loss, on the road to a ranked TCU team, and has no shot at a BCS bowl because of it.
2008-11-11 08:55:03
152.   oshea2002
I think people underestimate USC offensively when playing outside the Pac 10. We've had arguably an underachieving offense for three straight years now, yet have scored way more points in non-conf games - Arkansas, ND, Michigan, Nebraska, Illinois, UVA, Ohio State, etc. Some of those teams were good teams with good defenses. I don't know if it's coaching, tendencies, a lack of fear factor with Pac 10 opponents, what. I'm sure if Pete knew, he'd do something about it.

What I'm saying is we can struggle with Cal, and may struggle with the Tree on Saturday. This doesn't mean we wouldn't beat Penn State or Missouri by 4 TD's. Of course this whole scenario just increases my frustration level.

2008-11-11 08:58:25
153.   Ghost of Carlos Perez
If Boise St. loses and BYU beats Utah, I think they've got a decent shot at a BCS bowl game.
2008-11-11 08:59:50
154.   Eric Stephen
As long as BYU remembers it scheduled 1-AA Northern Iowa (Sagarin ranked 119th), and only beat winless Washington by a point.

I will give you the nod for biggest win over UCLA though. :)

2008-11-11 09:02:47
155.   oshea2002
153 - true. At that point it may come down to them or Ball State. Only one buster will get a bid even if more then one is eligible.
2008-11-11 09:06:57
156.   Daniel Zappala
154 Coastal Carolina (Penn State's first opponent) is 173 in Sagarin's rankings. USC is one of the few schools with a good non-conference schedule and they should get credit for that. But BYU shouldn't be penalized when other conferences aren't. Since the MWC has three top-15 teams this year, the argument that it is a weak conference seems irrelevant.
2008-11-11 09:07:57
157.   Daniel Zappala
And if both Utah and Boise State finish undefeated? One is going to be left out because of some outdated notion of what conferences are the strongest.
2008-11-11 09:09:27
158.   Bob Timmermann
It's much simpler to be a UCLA football fan and know that your team stinks equally against Pac-10 and nonconference opponents.

Who's spending their Saturday night watching UCLA at Washington? Let's have a show of hands.

On a related notes, somebody is trying sell tickets for the Apple Cup game in Pullman on StubHub for $400 each.

Good luck!

2008-11-11 09:10:34
159.   oshea2002
157 - yep. No BCS bowl will take them over Ohio State if they don't have to.

Steve Hartman was erroneously talking about this yesterday, he thought/thinks that if Boise and Utah are both eligible, they both go, so therefore SC would be stuck in the Holiday if Or. State wins out. The BCS-buster auto qualification that Boise and Hawaii got in on only works for one team.

2008-11-11 09:15:49
160.   Ghost of Carlos Perez
I believe BYU had informally scheduled Nevada, but they pulled out and all BYU could get was Northern Iowa.
2008-11-11 09:18:12
161.   Daniel Zappala
As currently construed, the BCS system includes the conference champions from the 6 BCS conferences and 4 at-large teams. Is there any (objective) justification for limiting it to the 6 BCS conferences? Why not take the 6 top-rated conference champions, regardless of what conference they are in? Then if the MWC champion has a better year than, say, the ACC champion, they would get the spot.
2008-11-11 09:20:39
162.   Tripon
161 Because the Big East knows its not the 6th best conference anymore, and would fight like hell to keep the current system.
2008-11-11 09:20:53
163.   D4P
Sad news regarding an Old Friend:

According to the St. Louis Post Dispatch, Juan Enacarnacion has "not yet recovered enough vision in his left eye to drive, let alone attempt to play baseball again" despite filing for free agency Monday.

2008-11-11 09:22:27
164.   oshea2002
161 - that rule seems fair to me, although I'd worry it would discourage some of the busters from playing decent teams in the non-conf. Their goal could just switch from exposure to going undefeated and hoping for down year in the Big East or ACC.

They could also just kick the Big East out (I think that conference is going kaput with Rich Rod leaving, Kelly likely to take a better job, etc.), and have 5 auto bids, with 2 bids automatically going to eligible buster teams.

2008-11-11 09:23:19
165.   Eric Stephen
Why not take the 6 top-rated conference champions, regardless of what conference they are in?

I wouldn't have a problem with that.

2008-11-11 09:25:49
166.   Bob Timmermann
There is a process where a conference can lose its automatic bid, but no one has met the criteria yet.

I think the ACC champ this year will be worse than the Big East champ.

Wake Forest vs Utah in the Orange Bowl?

2008-11-11 09:28:05
167.   oshea2002
161 - I would tell the Big East this. "Congrats on establishing your super hoops conference. Good luck on your 10-ncaa bid quest this year. However, you ceased to be relevant in football when you let Miami, Virginia Tech, and BC walk. Therefore you have lost your bid. If you get those schools back, we will reevaluate your position."

I'd imagine that while the Big East would fight it, the others may be in favor of it. If 2 busters aren't available, another power conference gets 2 teams. You could even allow a conference to have 3 teams if certain criteria are met (ie - no eligible 2nd team from any other conf. or no eligible buster team).

2008-11-11 09:28:11
168.   Bob Timmermann
On a sad and related note to that, RIP Herb Score. His obit is on The Griddle.
2008-11-11 09:37:30
169.   ToyCannon
Padres suffering through a divorce, cut salary and players
Arizona feeling the effects of the economy cut back 31 employee's.
Colorado can't afford their best player who is in the prime of his career, trade him for future salary relief.
Dodgers release Penny saving 7.5 million, sell off prospects for salary relief, take discounted cash now, make offers they know aren't competitive with the market and won't be accepted but for some reason make these offers public which is quite unusual.

Will another domino fall or will the Dodgers outspend their division rivals by ridiculous levels? Will the Dodgers have more money wasted on bad contracts (Pierre, Schmidt, Jones) then the Padre's whole budget? Or will we found out that the Dodgers are also hitting a credit crunch? As Ken Noe said, anyone know how this years capital improvements are progressing?

2008-11-11 09:38:35
170.   Bob Timmermann
I never knew that this in day, the Padres would be in the same financial situation as Sterling Cooper.
2008-11-11 09:39:00
171.   ToyCannon
How do you determine a down year for a conference if no one plays a tough out of conference schedule?
2008-11-11 09:47:06
172.   Tripon
Former Dodgers GM Paul DePodesta was promoted to executive vice president by the Padres. - via Diamond.
2008-11-11 09:51:06
173.   Bob Timmermann
A down year for the Big 10 is determined by the fact of whether or not Ohio State has a chance to win.
2008-11-11 09:54:23
174.   D4P
What does an "executive vice president" do?
2008-11-11 09:56:01
175.   Bob Timmermann
Cash larger paychecks than a vice president.
2008-11-11 09:57:53
176.   Jon Weisman
2008-11-11 09:58:32
177.   Eric Stephen
Don't forget an EVP also gets a key to the coveted executive washroom.

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