Spare Change

March 29, 2010 |

Today’s Pro Day for the University of Oklahoma and more importantly for QB Sam Bradford will have a big effect on this month’s NFL Draft.  A good showing for Bradford should land him in the drivers seat to be the first overall selection by the St. Louis Rams, however if the Rams brass walks away with any doubts about Bradford, it is possible that he’ll slide to the Redskins with the fourth overall pick.  The difference between being selected with the 1st pick and the 4th pick in the draft would be near $15 million for Bradford on his first NFL contract.  Talk about good motivation for Bradford!  I honestly can’t imagine the Rams not taking Bradford, unless his shoulder continues to be an issue, something I’m sure you can point to as the reason for the Sooners late Pro Day event as they wanted to give Bradford’s shoulder as much time to heal as possible.

Staying in the NFL, the Steelers continue to make headlines with another night club incident.  As if the sexual assault case facing their franchise quarterback wasn’t enough drama, now one of Roethlisberger’s favorite targets has caught his own court case.  Santonio Holmes is facing legal troubles in Florida as he’s involved in a civil case after a woman is taking legal action against the receiver for allegedly throwing a drink at her while both were at a night club.

It’s not even April yet, but the Steelers are trying their best to gain the title of “Team of Idiots” from their  AFC North rivals, the Cincinnati Bengals.  Lets not also forget that the Steeler most often linked to bar/club issues has been their kicker Jeff Reed, who famously was arrested for public urination, amongst several other police incidents throughout his days in Pittsburgh.

Given the current events it might make sense for the Steelers to go for the crown and address their secondary issues by signing Adam “Pacman” Jones.  If the Steelers really want to get down at night, then Pacman is a must!  Can you imagine walking into the club and seeing Roethlisberger, Holmes, Jones, and Reed all at the same VIP table?  Now that sounds like a fun night!

While Pittsburgh keeps making headlines for their bone headed football players, the one positive news coming from the “Steel City” is that it looks like the Penguins will be hosting the Washington Capitals for the NHL’s Outdoor Classic on New Years Day at Heinz Field next season.  This matchup of Ovechkin’s Caps and Crosby’s Pens was completely inevitable for the event and I can’t believe that it has taken this long to happen.  The Caps-Pens game drew huge TV numbers when they played on Super Bowl Sunday, which I’m sure was enough to cement this matchup of teams to play during one of the NHL’s primier events. 

The Caps expireinced a day of highs and lows yesterday as the Calgary Flames had as many goals as the Caps had shots early in the game.  The Capitals lost the game to the Flames 5-3, but even with the loss the team clinched the top spot in the Eastern Conference, meaning the Verizon Center will be covered in red throughout the spring.

It will be exciting to keep an eye on Alexander Ovechkin during the remainder of the regular season as he trails Henrik Sedin by one point and Sidney Crosby by one goal for the league’s top point scorer and goal scorer respectively.  Ovechkin’s leading the hunt for his third straight Hart Trophy (MVP), but I’m sure the NHL would love to find a reason not to give it to him and hand it to their poster boy Sidney Crosby.  However there’s absolutely no way that Ovechkin can’t win the award if he leads the league in points, goals, plus/minus, all while being the captain of a team that could also win the league’s President Trophy (league’s highest point totaling team).  Ovie knows what’s at stake during the rest of the season and I’m positive he’s going to do his best to lead the way in every stat category he can.  A motivated Alex is a joy to watch and a nightmare to play against.  Stay tuned!

Opening day for the Orioles is right around the corner and it appears that manager Dave Trembley has begun to formulate his batting order.  While I wasn’t shocked by the news that Miguel Tejada will start the season as the clean-up batter, I’m also not pleased by the decision.  The idea that Tejeda is worthy of batting fourth or being productive in that spot is troubling to me as I can already see Tejeda ending many promising innings for the Orioles with his knack for striking out or grounding into double plays when his team needs his production the most.  Maybe the Orioles are still looking at the back of Tejeda’s 2004 baseball card and seeing numbers that would make Miguel a worthy candidate of batting clean-up, but I’ve seen enough of Tejeda recently to know that he’s not the right man for the job.

This is how I’d make the batting order:

1.  B. Roberts (switch)- The club’s best option to bat lead-off

2.  N. Markakis(left)-  Markakis is a contact hitter and being a lefty should help Roberts get to 3rd base when Nick singles to right field.

3.  A. Jones (right)-  Jones is on the verge of explosion and batting 3rd would give him plenty of opportunities to put up big numbers.  Making an All Star appearance and winning a Gold Glove last season was just the beginning for Jones.

4.  M. Wieters (switch)- I know it puts added pressure on the kid, but this is where the club envisioned Wieters batting when they drafted him.  Even if the timing isn’t “right”, I want to see this guy learn how to handle the pressue now, so that when the club’s ready… so is Matt.

5.  G. Atkins (right)-  Atkins was the right handed bat in the middle of the order they choose to add this off season, so why not see how it works for Atkins.  Will he put up ’07 numbers or ’09 numbers in Baltimore this season?

6.  F. Pie (left)- Assuming Reimold isn’t ready to play LF Pie finally showed off some of those five tools we all heard about.  I like the idea of having Pie’s speed in the middle of the line-up.

7.  M. Tejeda (right)-  #7 is where Tejeda should be batting in 2010.

8.  L. Scott (left)-  This is probably the lowest that any DH bats in the order amongst all teams, but that’s the reality when Scott is the best you have.

9.  C. Izturis (switch)-  He does have to bat…doesn’t he?

What would you do if Dave Trembley gave you the responsibilities to create the batting order?