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Friday, August 20, 2010

Roger Clemens is being indicted for perjuring himself during his testimony in 2008.  What took them so long to get around to a mere decision?  Clemens faces 30 years in the Crow Bar Motel and up to $1.5 million in fines.  This is gonna get good.  Clemens tweeted "I never took HGH or Steroids. And I did not lie to Congress. I look forward to challenging the Governments accusations, and hope people will keep an open mind until trial."  Well that takes care of it.  Call off the trial!  And finally, the Sports Pickle weighed in with this gem: "Still not sure if a perjury charge is worse than being a Blue Jay."

Detroit Tiger Johnny Damon told The Michael Kay Show that you "can count on" the New York Yankees chasing soon-to-be-free agent Carl Crawford this off season.  Me likey.  He also said "no question" that he preferred playing in New York over Boston.

The NHL is experimenting with rule changes at a Mississauga rink this week.  Some of the changes are interesting, like one faceoff circle in the middle of each offensive zone, while others are lame, like being able to pick who to take a faceoff against when the original guy is thrown out.  Those, and others, discussed here.

I always thought "hot yoga" was about the temperature of the room.  No more.  It is hot yoga when 2007 Playboy Playmate of the Year Sara Jean Underwood demonstrates moves.  Kudos to the camera man here for some fantastic work.

Here's an interesting stat:  in 2009-2010 Manchester United racked up 13,500 travel miles.  Houston Dynamo of the MLS racked up 54,700 miles.  North America is big, in case you were wondering.

If you're wondering what any MLS player is making, wonder no more.  The complete listing here, in order by team.  Toronto FC's Nana Attakora and Dan Gargan need to find themselves new agent, the kid is pulling a mere $40k.  Of course, that will change.  As for TFC's Julian de Guzman, he must show up to collect his pay cheque with a gun and ski mask.  He's pulling $1.7 million.

Chicago White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen got off another priceless blast, this time on the subject of Jim Thome no longer being with the Pale Hose - and why doesn't that term get used anymore? - and coming back to kill them with a walk off shot the other night.  Read here for that, and a collection of Ozzie's finer works.

In addition to being smokin' hot, and being able to talk like a badly overdubbed kung fu movie, Abbey Clancy has forgiven Peter Crouch over the allegations he got busy with an Algerian hooker.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

OHB is back, the world yawns

OHB says this will definitely be his last year.  If he means on the planet, we accept. Looking forward to seeing the New Orleans Saints, Dallas Cowboys and others send the sink at him.   The OHB says he "owed it to" the Minnesota Vikings to return.  Clearly, much has changed in the past week or two when the subject of owing the Vikes anything wasn't even uttered.  That, or he has changed his name to "Minnesota Vikings" and we're just finding out.

The Boston Red Sox are a perfect 9-0 against the LA Angels this year.  Struggling in Boston this year?  Scalpers, who say they're down 70% or more on Sox ducats.

Tony Dungy is by all accounts a decent guy, and football man.  But him suggesting that NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell look into the language used by New York Jets coach Rex Ryan on NFL's Hard Knocks is laughable.  Dungy is the exception to the sporting language that applies universally - one of f-bombs as a starting point.  Interesting though that he took up for dog killer and herpes dispenser Michael Vick but wants to crack a guy for colourful language on HBO.

There are some handy blogs out there, but none I've seen in the game of soccer, from a Canadian perspective, than this one, that offers a daily update as to games being broadcast in Canadaland.

French and Chelsea striker Nicolas Anelka was suspended for 18 games by the French Football Federation for the shenanigans in South Africa.  His response was to laugh, noting that he had no intention of playing for France again.  Typical French, one quitting, the other going to a war it knows it cannot lose.  Well, guess that part is rare.

A great collection of athletes getting hit in the face with balls.  Not that kind, Bukkake.

Those crazy Icelandic footballers are at it again.  A pair of videos here.  Not sure what wins for best celebration, but the baby one sure is creative.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

TFC stun Mexican'ts

Toronto FC stunned themselves and their fans with an incredible performance in downing MexicanCruz Azul 2-1 powerhouse in the opening game of Champions League group play.  Martin Saric and Mista scored a pair of first half goals for a dominant TFC squad that could easily have led by two or three more.  That night at BMO Field made up for a lot of painful days and nights over the previous few years.

I'm sure that the people of Cleveland are thrilled to hear the news that LeBron James is open to one day returning to play for the Cavaliers. Going to go out on a very thick limb here and suggest that bridge is torched and they don't feel the same. What a tool.  James also told GQ that he didn't find Charles Barkley's attempts to be humourous when talking about LeBron to be very funny.  He's the only one who figures Chuck was joking.  LeBron also said his performances on and off the court even spoiled his own family.  Class act.

You're the Boston Red Sox, sitting third in the AL East. The LA Dodgers are likely to put former BoSox left fielder Manny Ramirez on waivers. Do you block the Tampa Bay Rays and New York Yankees by putting in a claim, or let them have a stab at him?  Pretty wild scenario potentially, not to mention how ManRam might react to going back to a place he fought so hard to leave.  Defensively, however, ManRam remains in the AL East in the form of Toronto Blue Jay Travis Snider.  Nice butcher job last night. 

Werder Bremen and German midfielder Mesut Ozil is off to join Real Madrid.  Looks like new coach Jose Mourinho clearly wants to top Barcelona this year. Not sure how great a move it is for Ozil in a very crowded Real midfield with Cristiano Ronaldo, Kaka, Xabi Alonso, Rafael Van der Vaert, Sami Khedira and more.  Only so many minutes and touches to go around.

My new nickname for fading Captain Derek Jeter: "Captain Crutch". It works on so many levels, tying in his gimpiness, his lack of range, and his lack of clutch performance. It does not include saying the Yankees can lean on him anymore.

Not exactly a ringing endorsement of MLB umpires when a recent study by ESPN showed that 20% of calls made are wrong. No word on how heavy Joe West weighed in on those figures.

Didn't we say something about the OHB returning in time for the third pre-season game?  Guess what?  He's back.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

K-Rod Drama Karma

Who says there is no karma?  New York Mets closer Francisco Rodriquez might be out of a job.  Seems the Mets are looking to void his contract for tearing ligaments in his hand last week while laying a beating on his father-in-law, an injury that ends his 2010 season.  Gonna make Christmas extra special in K-Rod's house I'm sure if he's jobless with $17 million down the drain, the remaining number on his contract.

In baseball, ESPN's Jayson Stark has come up with a stat called the CUS - "Criminally Unsupported Start" (ESPN Insider only).  That's when a pitcher goes 6+ innings but his team scores one run or less while he is in the game.  So real quality starts, real poor support.  If Felix Hernandez, currently 8-10, had won all his Criminally Unsupported Starts he'd be 19-3. Cliff Lee would be 17-1, Cole Hamels 15-4 and Johan Santana 18-3.  Some other interesting stats on Josh Johnson, who might well be the best in the game: he has 5 Criminally Unsupported Starts, and his Florida Marlins have scored more than four only once while he was in a game since May.  Crazier stat?  His bullpen has blown six games in which he handed the ball over with a lead.

Do Paul Scholes and Ryan Giggs ever age?  Both were fantastic yesterday in Manchester United's 3-0 demolition of Newcastle United.  Could easily have been double that or more.  Gotta give some praise to the Magpies Joey Barton for his ridiculous mustache, something he's keeping until Newcastle wins.

If you wondered why the Buffalo Bills, with Fred Jackson and Marshawn Lynch in the backfield, not to mention multiple (yes, MULTIPLE) other needs drafted CJ Spiller at running back, wonder no more: he's now the starter with the other two banged up.

Another night in which Derek Jeter could come up big for the New York Yankees in the ninth, and he came up oh so very small by hitting into another GIDJ...err...GIDP.  Captain Clutch is a fading myth.

Man owns pit bull.  Man has sex with said pit bull.  Man arrested.  Man will not be anybody's bitch in prison, methinks.

For a guy who some perceive to be having a terrible year, New York Yankee Alex Rodriguez' projected 30 home runs and a league leading 138 RBI sure don't seem too bad.

In a season of cameos, Chris Bosh on Entourage has to be the low point.  Could he have seemed more wooden in offering $1,000 for a bottle of vodka at a tequila party?  That's CB4, always just a little out of position.  Speaking of tequila, here's video of what happens when one tries to chug an entire bottle of Patron.  Step up there fella, get to the Cabo Wabo already.

How is it $2.50-$3.00 to fill an 18L bottle of water, but a litre of Evian costs $1.29?

It is well established that I think any football pre-season is a waste of time, but when I hear that New York Giant Eli Manning got busted up against the New York Jets last night, a video huntin' I go.  Question: if you're the Giants team doctor, how are you going to know if he's not displaying symptoms of a deeper head injury?  Dude sounds like he's concussed at the best of times.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Ch-ch-ch-ch-changes...some good, some strange

Want a ticket to the Miami Heat home opener? The average ticket price is a mere $805 against cross-state rival Orlando.  How reasonable.  $805 with no guarantee LeBron James and Chris Bosh show up.

Since 2007, Boston Red Sox purported ace Josh Beckett's ERA is 4.46.  This season, he has recorded all of three outs after the 7th inning.  Good thing they signed him to a big extension this year.  Oh, and the New York Yankees and Tampa Bay Rays own him.

No shortage of goals in the opening weekend of the English Premier League.  Champions Chelsea hammered West Brom 6-0, with Didier Drogba netting three.  Tottenham and Manchester City played a wild scoreless draw that should've seen Spurs win going away, if not for a fantastic game from Joe Hart in goal for CityBlackpool made a shocking debut in the EPL with a 4-0 win over Wigan Arsenal and Liverpool drew 1-1, thanks to 'pool's goalie Pepe Reina dropping a last minute deflection into his own net.  The rest of the scores here.  Up today at 3pm, Manchester United host a returning Newcastle United, with a 3pm kickoff.

With an election not too far off in Ontario, Premier Dalton McGuinty figured it time to flip flop again and is now allowing MMA into the province.  About time, DM.  You don't have to like it, but there is no sensible reason to keep something that is legal in 49 American states and every other province in Canada out, not when your province could use the millions that will pore in each time the UFC touches down.  Word is a card is being worked for 2011 at Rogers Centre, which they're aiming to break the UFC's 30,000 attendance record.  My bet?  They blow that figure away.

San Francisco Giant Tim Lincecum has thrown the third most pitches in the bigs since 2008, and given his slight build and drop in velocity, is messing with his mechanics to try to hump the fastball back up.  That's a potential recipe for disaster.

One of the things most people would agree in soccer is not the best way to sort out a draw is penalty kicks.  Little disputing that among fans, or those who don't like the game (won't use "haters" because that term is so played).  So what is FIFA President Sepp Blatter musing on?  Going to the PK's in all World Cup games that finished tied.  Ridiculous.  For the record, I don't know that there is a perfect solution to games that go through extra time all square.  Continuing on indefinitely risks injury too greatly, particularly in the heat.  Allowing more subs only freshens teams up and takes away from the long time rules of the game only allowing three subs and the relative time boxing of the game.  Not sure what the right call is.  Thanks to GBVH for the (infuriating) link.

Have a great day.