Are the St. Louis Cardinals the worst team ever to play in a World Series. No honestly, I really wonder. Let's go over really quickly what they bring to the table. They have 3 all-star regulars in Pujols, Rolen, and Edmonds. All 3 are banged up to a certain degree. Actually, you could argue with the injuries, the biggest hitting threat is Chris Duncan. Not exactly a dynamite offense.
Now let's get to the pitching. This has been a starting rotation of one good pitcher, (Carpenter) and a bunch of below average arms. The game 1 starter (Reyes) is a guy who won a total of 5 games. Here are the WHIPS of Cardinals pitchers who started at least 15 games for them during the regular season. Suppan (1.45), Reyes (1.38), Weaver (1.50), Ponson (1.62), Marquis (1.52), and Mulder (1.70). The bullpen has been sharp in the playoffs, but the Tigers have 3 guys who would all be closers for the Cards. Wow is the National League pathetic that they could produce this team as it's representative. Please Tigers, make this short and relatively painless, because if the Cardinals win it all, it would be bad for baseball.
I wrote when the trade went down that the Pirates were crazy to give Oliver Perez away for so little. In a world where starting pitching is at such a premium, how do you make this move? Oh yeah, because they are the Pirates.
Conan O'Brien does a segment where he casts actors for "made for TV movies." He did this Friday night for the LCS and my 4 favorites were the following:
Jim Leyland would be played by UN representative John Bolton
Joe Buck would be played by Martina Navratilova
Chris Duncan would be played Fred Durst
Albert Pujols would be played by the Genie from Aladdin.
Later on the show, Joe Buck was the guest and when Conan put up the picture of Buck/Navratilova, Buck had a great quip saying that he has never looked so manly. Buck actually was in the ring with Conan, trading line for line with the funniest Network talk show host on TV.
I tire of the relentless bashing I hear around here in regards to Buck. The guy is smart, witty, and knows the game. Sure he's a bit swarmy at times, but so are a lot of quick-witted people. I wouldn't say he's the best I have ever heard, but outside of Vin Scully and Jon Miller there doesn't seem to be any baseball announcer that a majority around here like. I think all professions need to be graded on a curve and if you only think 2% of the people who do the job are any good, then you might want to reconsider your standards.
Went 3-1 in the NFL, while splitting in the college ranks. Usually I have 6 college games and 5 pro games, but this week I'm switching it around.
One NFL note. Michael Vick was on the cover of Sporting News and featured in an Inside the NFL interview saying that he feels disrespected. He believes he should get to audible more at the line of scrimmage and now wants to throw the ball more. At one point he mentions that he would study harder if he was allowed more of a free reign. Vick is not an accurate passer and hasn't shown the leadership skills that top QB's have. Atlanta has playoff talent, but Vick holds them back. He makes them too one-dimensional on offense.
4 star Miami(-17.5) Duke
3 star Purdue(+7) Wisconsin
3 star Texas(-5) Nebraska
3 star Syracuse(+18) Louisville
3 star Iowa(+13.5) Michigan
The Hurricanes are reprehensible, but the past week sets up a great opportunity to get a team with a chip on its shoulder. Talent-wise, Miami is 40 points better, so I like the spot a lot.
Wisconsin has quietly put together a great record, but once again, talent-wise, the Boilermakers are slightly better.
I don't see what the Huskers have done to deserve to be only a small dog.
Iowa has traditionally played well in Ann Arbor under Ferentz and I think it will be a close, as I'm still not sold on Henne in a big game.
3 Star Carolina(+3.5) Cincy
3 Star NY Giants(+3.5) Dallas
3 Star Pittsburgh(-2.5) Atlanta
3 Star Minnesota(+7) Seattle
2 star Buffalo(+6) New England
2 star San Diego(-4.5) Kansas City
An example of 2 teams going different directions. Bengals o-line banged up, which is not good when facing the NFL's best d-lineman (Peppers.)
The Giants defense is starting to play to their potential. Bledsoe has another tough week against an NFC East foe.
The Steelers defensive speed keeps Vick from running wild, as they are starting to hit their stride on offense.
The Vikings are a team that is built to play games decided by field goals. Should be another close one.
I suspect the Bills will find a way to lose at the end, but win the stats battle.
I've been promoting that the Chargers are the best team in the NFL for awhile and even though Arrowhead is a brutal place to win at, this appears to be a transition season for the Chiefs.