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English Muffins

April 10, 2010 by

English Muffins by Admin

Two of England’s top golfers are tied at the top of the leaderboard after the 2nd round of the Masters.  Lee Westwood and Ian Poulter are tied at 8-under par, 2 strokes clear of  5 players (including God, I mean, Eldrick). Westwood followed up his 67 with a 69 and Poulter fired his second straight 68.  On a day in which only 3 players shot under 70, the two tied at the top posted 2 of them. 

In the 5-some that is 2 strokes behind the leaders is Tiger Woods….where else would he be than a 5-some?…”The Peoples Champ” Phil Mickelson, KJ Choi, Rickey Barnes and Anthony Kim.  Phil had a 65-foot putt for birdie on the 18th hole  that slammed the back of the cup and popped out.  Had that putt dropped, he would have been in Cpt. Transgression’s group on Saturday.  I’m actually glad that Phil didn’t hole that putt.  He deserves to be the focus of his group.  Not playing second fiddle to some self-centered loser. 

Of the 3 members of AARP that had fantastic 1st rounds, Sandy Lyle was the one who failed to miss the cut.  After posting an improbable 69, he shot an 86 today.  He must have had a bridge game, or something that he need to make sure he was at on Saturday morning.  Freddy Couples and Tom Watson didn’t exactly light the course on fire Friday, but they remain in the hunt.  They both fell back to 3-under for the tournament, 5 strokes off the lead. 

3-over par was this year’s cut line.  Favorites such as Jim Furyk (+12), Vijay Singh (+10), Stewart Cink (+8), and Paddy Harrington (+5) all missed the cut. 

All the storylines are there for a great weekend.  Can one of the two Brits take home the green jacket?  Can Phil win his 3rd Masters?  Can Tom Watson and Freddy Couples get the DeLorean up to 88-Mph and go back in time?  And will mistress number 20 show up at Augusta National looking for her cut of the winner’s check in order to keep quiet?  Personally, I’d love to see Phil and the guy who’s “In treatment” battle it out in the same group on Sunday…..with Phil CRUSHING him. 

Let’s all tune in tomorrow morning for “moving day”.  Wait?  It’s not on in the morning?  Oh ok, I’ll tune in at lunch time.  Stop, why can’t I watch the leaders tee off at 2:45 PM EST?  Oh, that’s right, because The Masters doesn’t want you to see the 1st few holes at their precious course.  So Live TV coverage will start at 3:30PM. 

Wasn’t  this attitude and arrogance the EXACT cause of Eldrick’s “transgressions”?   

Welcome to the “Old Boys” Club – Written by Admin

When Fred Couples, Tom Watson and Sandy Lyle came into the scorers tent following their opening rounds at this year’s Masters, they were asked for their “cards”.  It’s not that no one believed that they shot 66, 67 and 69…but that the Masters officials wanted to see their AARP cards. 

These 3 men are all former Masters champions.  Couples (50 yrs old), your 1st round leader with a 6-under 66, won it back in 1992 .  2-time green jacket winner Tom Watson (60 years old), who is tied for 2nd after a career best 5-under 67, was probably in the VIP room at Studio 54 celebrating his wins in 1977 and 1981.  And then there’s Scotland’s Sandy Lyle (52 yrs old), who shot a 3-under 69 and is tied for 12th.  He won the Masters back in 1988, right around the time when Sonny Bono was elected mayor of Palm Springs.

Now I’m not saying that Freddy, Tom or Sandy can’t win it, but I’d almost be as shocked as Elin Nordegren after unlocking Tiger’s blackberry, if any of them finished in the top 10.  Last summer, Watson gave a performance for the ages in the British Open.  He battled Stewart Cink to the very end but ran out of gas and lost in a playoff.  For Watson to pull that off again, it would be an absolute miracle.  Every year it seems as if a blast from the past shows up with a stellar and unexpected opening round , but then fades in the second round and eventually is forgotten.

Oh yeah, Tiger Woods is back this week.  I’m not going to waste anymore time on him unless he wins the tournament.  Even if he does, I don’t really care.  People were blinded by his “greatness”, but not me.  From day one, his antics on the course and his sense of entitlement made him impossible for me to root for.  This week, and every week, I’ll be rooting for “The People’s Champion”, Phil Mickelson.  There’s a man everyone should root for.  He took time off last year not because he got caught cheating on his wife, but to be there beside her. 

The course will be extra soft early on tomorrow after strong storms came thru this evening.  So you can expect some low numbers early.  This will be beneficial to Freddy and Sandy, who tee off early.  As the wind picks up in the afternoon, the likes of Phil Mickelson, Y.E. Yang and Tom Watson will have to be near-perfect on the back 9.

Prevention and Recovery.  That was the slogan posted in the Mets locker room in Port St. Lucie this spring.  After a rash of injuries that crippled the team, they needed to come up with a positive outlook on the 2010 season.

After game #1 of 162, Johan Santana prevented the Marlins from scoring and David Wright recovered from last year’s power outage.  Santana upped his opening day mark to 3-0 with the Mets, who interestingly ran their all-time opening day record to a MLB best 32-17.  That’s pretty amazing considering that they had lost their first 8 season openers.

In 2008 David Wright was Superman.  He had the best year of his career,  batting .302 with 33 HR and 124 RBI.  In 2009, Superman met his Kryptonite.  Citi Field.  From it’s opening in 1964 to it’s morbid closing in 2008,  Shea Stadium was by no means a home run hitters park.  It was known as a pitcher’s park, due to its deep power alleys.  But Citi Field zapped Superman of all his powers.  He only hit 10 HR last year.  It just seemed like every ball that Wright hit into the gaps were swallowed up by the Grand Canyon that has become known as Citi Field’s outfield.  But this is a new year.  2009 is in the rear view mirror and a thing of the past.  In the bottom of the 1st inning, Wright smashed an opposite field 2-run HR to give the Mets a 2-0 lead.  Wright didn’t get into a home run trot, he ran around the bases as if to tell his teammates  “Let’s go, get on my back.”  When arriving at the dugout he was dishing out high-fives like a Hulk Hogan double-axe handle off the top rope.

As important as David Wright is to the Mets offense, Johan Santana IS the Mets Pitching staff.  He was acquired by the Amazin’s 2 years ago and didn’t disappoint in his first campaign.  He went 16-7 with a stellar 2.54 ERA.  Last year, he was cruising along in his usual fashion, when he started losing velocity and later had his season cut short do to an elbow injury.  Fast forward to opening day and he was as good as ever.  Johan went 6 innings, while only giving up 1 run.  His change-up was devastating.  Hitters were constantly off-balance and hit many weak fly balls.  He used the change-up so effectively in his first two at bats with Hanley Ramirez, that in the third, he blew 3 straight fastballs right by him on the inside corner.  That’s a master a work.

The Mets aren’t going 162-0 this year, but with a few breaks here and there, a .500 record is not out of the realm of possibility.  The key will be the 4 starters behind Santana.  Pelfrey, Maine, Perez and Niese must have good years for the Mets to contend for a wild card birth.

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ICC World Twenty20 2010

April 6, 2010 by

ICC World Twenty20 2010 by Bevo_No_Spicy_Pls

A Twenty20 game involves two teams; each has a single innings, batting for a maximum of 20 overs. Twenty20 cricket is also known as T20 cricket.

A Twenty20 game is completed in about three and half hours, with each innings lasting around 75 minutes, thus bringing the game closer to the time span of other popular team sports. It was introduced to create a lively form of the game which would be attractive to spectators at the ground and viewers on television and as such it has been very successful.  Although the format has been proved successful, it has been argued that since Twenty20 encourages far-from-technical cricket, youngsters wanting to pick up the game will be misguided into believing that cricket is all about trying to hit 6s (kinda like a home run in baseball) and 4s no matter how you do it.

With less than a month left till the third ICC World twenty20 bowls off, the list of the 15 member’s squad has been announced by all 12 playing nations. The third edition of ICC World twenty20 will be played in the West Indies, April 30th to May 16th 2010 with matches to be played at four grounds – Barbados, Guyana, St.Lucia and St.Kitts & Nevis. The tournament will be organized in parallel with the women’s tournament, with the men’s semi-finals and final being preceded by the semi-finals and final from the women’s event. A total of twelve teams will participate in the tournament (Pakistan, Australia, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, New Zealand, Zimbabwe, India, South Africa, Afghanistan, West Indies, England and Ireland).

There will be four groups consisting of three teams in each group. Each team will play with each other in their corresponding group and the top two teams from each group will qualify for the super 8’s stage. The twenty20 Final at Kensington Oval, a game which I finally secured tickets for after a 2 month search (long story), will be on May 16th.

Being from Trinidad and Tobago means by default I’m cheering for the West Indies team, even though they are currently ranked #8 of 12 in the world in the one day 50 over version of the game, they do have some of the world’s most explosive players in the twenty20 version of the game – one being Chris Gayle (only player to score an international twenty20 100 score). Chris Gayle is responsible for hitting the some of the biggest sixes in cricket and although it’s not an official stat, he has lost the most balls in domestic and international form of the game, he hits the ball so far over the wall that they couldn’t be found, but when your stadium is located in a jungle that a pretty easy thing to do I guess.

The West Indies team can be described as the NY METS of international cricket, they are surely going to break your heart repeatedly but a fan is a fan and we always hold out hope however faint and unwise it may be.  The W. Indies lost their last twenty20 international to lowly Zimbabwe in a game described by some experts as “the worst international cricket ever played.” They start off in a relatively easy group along with England and the Irish but knowing what I know about the W. Indies, easy usually means finding a way to lose.

Stay tuned for more…..

The Dallas Cowboys and Jerry Jones are doing away with the past.  We’re not talking about the 5 Super Bowl trophys.  We’re talking about expensive, unproductive veterans.  5-Time Pro Bowl left tackle, Flozell “The Hotel” (he’s 6 foot 7 inches tall and 340 lbs) Adams and 2007 Pro Bowl safety Ken “my neck is so long that I should be on a National Geographic special” Hamlin, were cut by the Cowboys Thursday.  Adams and Hamlin both signed six-year deals through 2013 before the 2008 season.   Adams, who will turn 35 in May, was due a $2.5 million roster bonus in June and a $5 million base salary for the 2010 season. Ken Hamlin’s base salary this season was to be just over $5.5 million.

Ordinarily, moves like these could possibly cripple a team’s salary cap space.  Like when the Cowboys cut Terrell Owens prior to the start of last season (he was cut after 1 season after signing a 4 year contract extension).  Instead of dealing with all of the distractions he brought to the team, they took a $9 million cap hit.  $9 million of dead cap space just to rid themselves of a cancer.    But this year, due to the owners and players association not coming to an agreement on a new collective bargaining agreement, there is no salary cap.  Hence, no penalty for releasing overpaid veterans.  This move saved the Cowboys $13 million for the upcoming season.

Normally, you would think that Jerry Jones would be licking his surgically enhanced chops when he hears the words “Uncapped Season”.  OK, he might be licking them, but not reaching for his wallet at the same time.  This seems to be a new and improved Jerry that we are seeing.  After opening “Jerry’s World” last year, millions upon millions of dollars of new revenue are streaming into his bank account.  But this hasn’t meant that Jerry will open his checkbook and spend as much as possible.  The uncapped season is letting owners shed these bad contracts in order to re-position themselves with younger players for the long haul.  With the Cowboys, this means getting wide Receiver Miles Austin signed to a long-term deal.  That $13 million coming off the books makes this possible.

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(Not so)Fantastic Four

March 31, 2010 by

These four are left?

The Final Four is basically the first major sporting event of the year.  Even if you are not a die hard college basketball fan, you can’t help but get wrapped up into it due to the number of office bracket pools.  Even if you don’t know who is good this year, you can generally get a way with picking two or three number one seeds and sprinkle in an upset or two in there.

North Carolina. Check.  Kansas. Check.  Kentucky. Check. Duke. Check.  Well at least you got one of those right.  Tournament staple, and perennial national championship contender, North Carolina, didn’t even make the field of sixty-five.  God it pains me to have to type sixty-five.  It just doesn’t fit. Kansas, led by four NBA prospects, bowed out in the second round to the University of Northern Iowa.   In their elite eight matchup with West Virginia, Kentucky started out missing on their first twenty (that’s right TWENTY), 3-point shots of the game.  They were on their way to shooting an unfathomable 4 of 32 from 3-point range in their loss to West Virginia.  They lost by 7.  But hey, at least you picked Duke to reach the Final Four.

If you were looking for that super-model, sexy looking Final Four, you’re going to have to settle for Kirstie Alley.  Sorry.   Michigan State (#5 seed), Butler (#5 seed), West Virginia (#2 seed) and Duke (#1 seed).  If you didn’t have that Final Four in your bracket, don’t worry.  Neither did the other 99.9% of America.

In the early game on Saturday, Michigan State will take on Butler.  Since this year’s Final Four is being played in Indianapolis, Butler will essentially be playing at home.  With their campus only about fifteen minutes away, you can expect Lucas Oil Stadium to be rockin’ for the Bulldogs.  Butler carries a nation long, 24 game winning streak into the game.  So if these two factors aren’t enough for Michigan State to handle, they will also be playing without their starting point guard, Junior Kalin Lucas.  Lucas suffered a torn Achilles tendon in the Spartan’s second round win over Maryland. Michigan State will have to rely heavily on Coach Tom Izzo’s experience to get them to the championship game. Izzo is leading his Spartan’s to their sixth Final Four appearance since 1999.  On the other hand, Butler has been slaying everyone in their path on the way to the Final Four.  After going undefeated in the Horizon league (18-0), 33 year old coach Brad Stevens has led the Bulldogs past #1 seed Syracuse, and #2 seed Kansas State along the way.  Home crowd, being on a total roll, looking for respect.  I believe this is Butler’s game to lose.  If they come out early and his 3-pointers like they have all season, this game could be over before you know it.  I like Butler to play for the national championship.  Butler 74 Michigan St. 65

 

In the second half of the double header, Coach K’s Duke Blue Devils take on the Bob Huggins lead West Virginia Mountaineers. Duke has made 15 Final Four’s, and last made it there back in 2004.  West Virginia is making only its second Final Four appearance ever.  The other time was all the way back in 1959, when that guy who the NBA logo is fashioned after, led them to the national championship game.  In case you didn’t know who it was, it’s Jerry West.  This game just feels like a Final Four type game.  It’s got flavor and pizzazz.  Two big time schools with big time coaches, and the love em’/hate em’ opinion that nearly every college basketball fan has for Duke.  A Duke staple for the past 20 years is that they always had great guards.  This year is no exception.  Although Nolan Smith and John Scheyer may not be top NBA prospects, they team up with G/F Kyle Singler to form the highest scoring threesome in the college game.  What is different about this Duke team is that they have three big guys who can rebound.  They are the biggest  Blue Devil team in years and one of the best offensive rebounding teams in the country. Against Baylor, Duke ripped down 23 offensive boards, leading to 23 second-chance points.  Brian Zoubek, Lance Thomas, and the Plumlee brothers are sure to give Westy V all they can handle.

Da’Sean Butler, one of the best players in college basketball, can do it all.  He can score in big bunches, to the tune of over 17 ppg.  He is going to be the focal point of Duke’s defense.  The Mountaineers are going to need secondary scoring, like they got in their upset victory over Kentucky.  Kevin Jones and Devin Ebanks will have to take it to the Duke big men and step up the scoring.  With starting point guard Darryl Bryant doubtful for the rest of the tournament with a broken bone in his foot, backup guard Joe Mazzulla will have to have a big game like he did against Kentucky.  His 17 points were a huge lift for West Virginia.

Having the two top remaining seeds battling it out for the right to play for the national championship, it’s going to be a close battle to the end.  I like duke’s big three to take over this game in crunch time.  I’ll take Duke 78 West Virginia 76

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Total Sports Blog is proud to announce its launch today.  This idea has been brewing in my head for a while now, and I have finally decided to put my thoughts and opinions out there for people to discuss and critique.  The goal of this blog is to get people talking about the hottest topics in sports, and to also enjoy it with a little bit of humor. 

Along with posts about general happenings in the world of sports, I will also be making posts about Fantasy Baseball and Fantasy Football.  Everything from injury updates, matchups, hot and cold streaks and minor league call-ups.

I would love to hear suggestions about what you, the sports fan, would like to read about.  If it’s June, and you want something about the World Cup…let me know.  If you want to hear my opinion about the NL East…let me know.  I love talking about sports and hope you do to.