If I were one of their fans,
I'd want more of the attitude of Kerry Wood and less of the attitude
that you hear out of people talking on the SCORE! Wood effectively
put the team on his back and willed them away from an immediate
withdrawal from the race.
Then yesterday, there was a
cloudburst, and the Chicago bats were unleashed! Many may feel that
those two games were not important. On the contrary, if you expect
to hang close to the 'Stros, who are on fire, you have to win games
in opposite ways like the Cubbies did over the weekend.
The Cubs STILL have the finest
arms in the division when it comes to starting pitching, and when
you see the disaster that the Cardinals pitching staff has become,
you know that Houston is now the team to beat. I just hope that
Chicago and St. Louis didn't let them get this little spurt of
confidence at exactly the wrong time!
Houston has won something
ridiculous like 10-out-of-11 thanks to the Cincinnati Reds, who will
rise up to pound the Cards and maybe take a game or two from the
Cubs but will lay down when they're playing the Astros. I just don't
understand it… It must be like politics.
Cards' adventurous ways
If you like those good
old-fashioned 1-0, 2-1 games that guys like Bob Gibson used to hurl
for you, this year's edition of the St. Louis Cardinals is not your
kind of team! At any given time this team could allow an eight-spot
on the scoreboard. It does pack some offensive wallop, but how many
offensive teams have made their way to the playoffs simply
outscoring their opponents?… I'm waiting… I'm STILL waiting… Not
very many. In fact, if you can name even one, please send it in in
care of our editors and I'll be happy to give you credit for it.
The Redbirds rode the pitching
of rookie Danny Haren on Saturday and the pitching(?) and hitting of
Woody Williams on Sunday to record their first two wins over the LA
Dodgers this season. Those two wins could prove of critical
importance down the stretch. Even winning back-to-back games didn't
help, as the Cards find themselves three games behind Houston, a
team suddenly blowing up! The race for the wild card may be on. A
lot will rest on the Cards going into San Diego and having a
(It's hard for me to even write
San Diego. When I was a kid out there, all we had was triple-A
baseball; oh, how times have changed!)
If the Redbirds can somehow
find a way to get themselves healthy, they may have a chance at the
playoffs. Unfortunately, they look to me like a very tired ballclub,
and tired ballclubs usually don't fare all that well. And if
somebody doesn't start beating up on the Astros, it's not going to
Who in the heck is Ben Curtis?
He's the new reigning British
Open champion, thank you very much. Not only was this his first tour
win, but he wins a major in his first start out of the gate.
Oddsmakers at some locales had
him at a 500-1 shot to win. I don't know if his chances were that
good. But when Thomas Bjorn did his Jeff Mayfield imitation, which
was quite flattering on worldwide television, and promptly hit not
one, not two, but three shots out of the sand on No. 16, he slammed
the door on himself and opened it to one of the most unsuspecting
characters ever to win a golf tournament, much less a major!
[to top of second column in this
One of the great things about
golf is that luck oftentimes enters into the final outcome, and this
Curtis kid must have been owed a whopping sum by the golf gods to
let it pour on him like it did this weekend! What a story. I'm not
sure you could think it up if your life depended on it. I'm not sure
you could believe it if it happened. But, it DID happen! This kid is
about the most unlikely athlete to win something of this prominence
you may ever see… Isn't it great! I wish there were more Ben
Curtises… and when are the golf gods gonna start repaying ME all
that they owe? I'm waiting!
Amazing discovery or the power
One of the leftovers of the end
of the Bill Self era was the question, what would you do if one of
the top five all-time college hoops meccas called you to be their
new basketball coach? Not that that is ever going to happen to you.
But, is there so much talent at UCLA, North Carolina, Kentucky, Duke
and Kansas that all you'd have to do is roll out the balls? We have
been told that recruiting is a both a war and a nightmare. That many
jobs have been axed when coaches couldn't land another half dozen
McDonald's All-Americans. I'm not even gonna get on that soapbox
again… but, I am gonna get on this one.
As you examine the all-time big
five, do you see any common denominators? It had been staring me in
the face for decades, but I must have refused to see it. It's not
just the superstars that these teams seem to have on their rosters
year after year. It's not just the Hall of Fame coaches that stroll
the sidelines of their historic gyms. So, what is it then?
It's as simple as this… It's
the COLOR of their uniforms! That's right! Every one of those
schools has BLUE as its MOST predominant color. I'm not too
brilliant, but if I was at a school with a different color scheme,
I'd immediately look into bringing blue into the picture somehow,
Maybe there's hope for the
Illini after all. After years of putting an emphasis on orange,
maybe it's time to but more of our energy on the blue side of the
equation. This has been a public service announcement to those in
Illini nation. GO ILLINI!!!
--Lance Armstrong is hanging on
to his lead in the Tour de France but looks vulnerable to most
--George Karl is out as the
Milwaukee Bucks head coach.
--LeBron James went 2-for-14 in his
final summer league game.
--St. Louis' Albert Pujols
cranked his 100th career dinger, and Houston's Jeff Bagwell sent his
400th into orbit. Chicago's Frank Thomas should join that 400 club
within in the next week.
excited that this is scheduled to be a cooler week. Make it great