Sunday, August 26, 2007

TWIR...the week in review...

The Yankees won two games in a row, Friday and Saturday, and lost a half game in the standings to the Red Sox who dismantled the White Sox.

Tim Wakefield and Josh Beckett both have 16 wins on the season and Daisuke Matsuzaka has 14. That's huge in the absence of an effective Curt Schilling.

Michael Vick is likely done in the NFL. The NAACP should stop wasting their time with this and find someone whose civil rights are actually being violated and help that person.

With the exception of one lapse in pass coverage late in the first half, the Patriots looked sharp in their pre-season match-up with the Carolina Panthers. Some quick observations -

  • After looking a little tentative and indecisive on his firs couple of rushes, Maroney looked good.
  • I'm not sure I like the offensive line going to a zone blocking scheme - it seemed at times that too many people were coming free in the backfield on running plays. The pass blocking, on the other hand, was almost flawless.
  • Tight end Marcellus Rivers is making a strong case for sticking with the team. He had two more catches including one for a touchdown, and is a decent blocker. If the Pats cut him and no one picks him up, I will be shocked. I can't figure out why the Giants cut him.
  • Donte Stallworth made a hell of a play coming back on a severely under-thrown fluttering duck from Brady.
  • Wes Welker appears to have come as advertised and might be the biggest impact free-agent the Pats picked up.
  • Am I the only one who is wondering if Randy Moss is pulling a T.O/Terry Glenn here with the hamstring injury?
  • Mike Richardson looks like a real player at corner. Hopefully that arm in the sling was precautionary and nothing more.
  • For a team playing with only one of its starting defensive linemen, the guys up front did a good job of slowing down the run and of getting penetration.
One final observation (not Patriots)...

Just another example of how ESPN's product has been slipping. ESPN has a piece about baseball teams and "who's the face of the franchise." In the case of the Red Sox, Eric Young at baseball tonight said that it was the Green Monster.

While not the worst choice, it is indeed a choice that required no thought, reflection, or the realization that an inanimate object associated with where the team plays cannot be the face of the franchise. That would be like saying the face of the franchise in Toronto is the Sky Dome because there is no player who is big enough, or has a strong enough personality to be the face of the franchise.

Not surprisingly, three of the other four sources named David Ortiz, and the fourth named Mr. Red Sox, Tim Wakefield.

Ultimately, I guess you have to wonder what the criteria are for being the face of the franchise. My own criteria, and the player has to meet any three of these to qualify - is he the guy the press go to for a comment? Is he the guy that kicks the rest of the team in the ass when they aren't playing well? Is he the guy that carries the team on his back when the team needs him to? Is he the guy that the Team actively markets to get fans to games? Is he the guy that fans automatically associate with the team?

The only exceptions to this can be owners. As much as Derek Jeter is the face of the Yankees, so to is George Steinbrenner. The player doesn't even have to be the best player on the team, he just has to...well meet a number of the above requirements.

To give you an example - two of the sources named Miguel Tejada the face of the Orioles. I live in Oriole country, and I don't see it. Brian Roberts, Peter Angelos, even Kevin Millar I think all are better choices.

It's an interesting, albeit flawed list. Worth a visit none the less.


falcon02520 said...

What Eric Young said on the "face of the franchise" list is horrible. I move him past Steve Phillips as the stupidest guy on that show. It is kinda ticking me off right now how bad that show has become.

Kevin Smith said...

Phillips has the occasional useful insight from a GM perspective - but this was just stupid. The Green Monster? I suppose that was the face of the franchise when Ted Williams played? Yaz? Evans? Rice?

I get that the first letter in ESPN stands for Entertainment, but please - at least have your people think about the things they say before they say it.

Animal Chaplain said...

I think it is a sad commentary that we, as a culture, our using the Vick story to compare "What's worse?" "What's worse", we ask, " carelessly fathering illegitimate children, or dogfighting?" "Dogfighting or rape?" "Dogfighting or racism?" "Dogfighting or (fill in the blank)....?"

Dogfighting is one more piece of evidence our country is in need of a spiritual transformation (please note I said spiritual and not necessarily religious). Animals are sentient beings - they feel pain, and they suffer, just like we do. They are not more important, or less important than human beings, but like human beings, they are important, too.

Every major faith teaches its followers to be responsible stewards of animals and the Earth. Please help us get the word out that caring for animals, just like caring for people, is an important part of just being a decent person and citizen. If we make this a priority, there will be no more dogfighting horror stories, and no more pointless comparisons of evils.

Chaplain Nancy Cronk

chris said...

That Pats game was fun! I checked the ranking of the Panther's defense afterwards just to make sure. Can't believe Warren and Seymore weren't playing...