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Drew’s Morning Dish — Mon., April 29

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Drew’s Morning Dish — Mon., April 29

Posted on 29 April 2013 by Drew Forrester

I refrained from reading any national or local re-caps of the 2013 NFL Draft over the weekend.  Why?  Mainly because I didn’t want to hear or see what folks thought about individual teams and how “well” they did in picking players who have never played a game in their life that mattered.

I laughed right along with everyone else on Thursday night when the Bills stumped all the talking heads by going with E.J. Manuel instead of Ryan Nassib.

You probably giggled too, right?

“The Bills…” you said.  ”What on earth do THEY know about picking a quarterback?  Geez, just go back and look at their recent list of failures.  J.P. Losman, Trent Edwards, Ryan Fitzpatrick…”

My guess is that most people were saying the exact same thing about the Ravens in 2008 when they took that Flacco kid out of Delaware in the first round.

“The Ravens…what on earth do THEY know about picking a quarterback?  Geez, just go back and look at their recent list of failures.  Kyle Boller, Chris Redman, Derek Anderson, Anthony Wright, Steve McNair.”

See what I mean?

There’s no sense in judging any of these picks until we see how they all play out, including guys like Manuel and Geno Smith and Manti Te’o.

Just let ‘em play.  We’ll see who knew what they’re doing in this year’s draft in 2015.

And save the silly draft report cards for the experts who have to give grades so it looks like they know what they’re talking about.

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Caps and Rangers again, huh?

Fourth time in five years, I believe.

It’s getting to be old hat, but the two teams usually provide for some interesting hockey in the post-season.

I’m taking the Caps in five games.  I know, I know, that’s very risky considering the Capitals are perennial playoff gaggers.  But I don’t think this Rangers team is any good and, particularly without Marian Gaborik, I just don’t think they have the firepower to overcome this suddenly offensive-minded Washington squad.

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That Billy Horschel guy who won this week’s PGA Tour event in New Orleans is the real deal.  Watch and see…he’ll be on the 2014 U.S. Ryder Cup team.  Dude’s a player.

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Buck’s obviously a little concerned about bullpen overuse already and it’s only April 28.

How else can you explain his decision on Sunday for not bringing in Jim Johnson to close the 8-6 lead in the 9th inning?

I’m not criticizing him for it, mind you.  I think it was the right thing to do.  He knows a lot more about these guys and their durability than we do.  Plus, if you really like to pin losses on people, go ahead and put the blame for Sunday’s debacle on Pedro Strop.  He inherited a 4-run lead on Saturday and, per his typical form, put enough guys on base that Buck had no choice but to go with J.J. to close the game out.

So, what you saw on Sunday was a by-product of the manager simply not wanting to go back to the well for the 6th time in seven games and use his closer.

Nothing would wreck the season – as evidenced by the display produced by Brian Matusz and Strop on Sunday in Oakland – like an injury to Jim Johnson.

If you have to almost-intentionally eat a loss in late April and then perhaps again once every 6-8 weeks just to keep your best pitchers fresh and healthy, go ahead and do it, I say.

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Greg Norman blasted golf’s drug testing procedures over the weekend during a trip to Australia.  Rather than subject players to urine tests, as is the case now, Norman is demanding blood tests for golfers on the PGA TOUR.  He’s adamant about it.  The 2-time British Open champion even went as far to say, “Anyone who uses an illegal substance to improve their performance or their physical well-being is cheating, period.  And there’s no room in the game for that.  It sickens me.”

Sounds to me like a guy who knows something’s going on with someone, in particular, and it’s The Shark’s way of putting him on notice.

As I read through the quotes, he was just a little too emphatic about it for someone who is “just trying to send a message” about fair play.

Norman knows someone’s cheating.  He won’t say who.  But he knows.

 

 

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Drew’s Morning Dish — Wed., April 24

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Drew’s Morning Dish — Wed., April 24

Posted on 24 April 2013 by Drew Forrester

Well, that’s the end of Dylan Bundy’s career.

Unreal.

I’m kidding.

While I’ll admit it’s never good to see your name linked with Dr. James Andrews, unless he’s getting you on at Augusta National, I wouldn’t be overly concerned with Bundy’s visit to see the good doctor.

He fixes people, in case you haven’t heard.

And even if they find something structurally unsound in his forearm, that’s what Andrews is there for…to get it right.

Lots of folks will panic over Tuesday’s news, but let’s allow it to all play out and then go from there.  It’s not like Bundy was going to come up in July and go 11-2 in his 13 starts with a 2.49 ERA.  That just wasn’t going to happen.  So, this Orioles team won’t be affected at all by any decision made by Dr. Andrews.

Get the kid’s arm fixed and let’s move on.

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Nice work by the Capitals on Tuesday night to fend off a pesky Winnipeg team and win the Southeast Division with that 5-3 win in D.C.

That was a hockey player’s game on Tuesday.  In fact, really, it closely resembled “playoff hockey”, which hopefully prepares the Caps for what lies ahead in May.

The work Ovechkin put in on the game-clinching empty net goal was an indication that his effort level has drastically changed under Adam Oates.  He started the whole play twenty seconds earlier by applying pressure near the middle of the ice as a loose puck rolled back in the Winnipeg end.  Ovi kept fighting along the boards long enough for Backstrom to come in behind him and get involved in the play.  As a loose puck appeared and Backstrom swooped in to collect it, Ovechkin realized he was going to be in an offsides position and hustled some fifteen feet or so back into the neutral zone.  Now onside, The Great Eight collected a nice pass from Backstrom and slapped it in from 35 feet for the backbreaker.

This time two years ago, I’m not sure Ovechkin would have put in that kind of effort.

For sure, last season, Dale Hunter would have been mad at Backstrom and Ovechkin for both being in the offensive end of the ice at the same time.

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I’m guessing the Ravens haven’t cut Rolando McClain yet because they’d rather not give away their position prior to Thursday’s NFL draft.

In other words, if they cut him, they’re letting 31 other teams know they’re linebacker-shopping again.

I assume sometime next week he’ll be gone.

Right?

I mean, I realize he went to Alabama and all, but Ozzie’s not really going to keep Rolando McClain, is he?

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That Stephen Curry kid can really shoot the basketball.

And, because he didn’t go to Duke, he’s actually likeable.

Everything about him looks Duke-ish, and it’s hard to believe Coach K didn’t get him, but he somehow flew under the radar screen and wound up at Davidson of all places.

But he can absolutely shoot the ball as well as anyone I’ve seen in a long time.

And those jerseys they’re wearing in Golden State…wow x 5!  How they ever lose a game wearing those duds, I have no idea.

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Hey, did you read that story about the two Flyers fans who both wound up getting Rhodes Scholarship offers in the same year?

Yeah, me neither.

 

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Drew’s Morning Dish – Mon., April 8

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Drew’s Morning Dish – Mon., April 8

Posted on 08 April 2013 by Drew Forrester

One of the dumbest lines in professional sports has to be this one:  ”Let the players decide the game.”

We heard this twice over the weekend.  First, it was in the Louisville-Wichita State game when the refs blew a quick whistle on a late scramble for a loose ball.  In the other semi-final, there was a charge called on Syracuse with 19.2 seconds left that easily could have been called a blocking foul.

Then we heard it:  ”Let the players decide the game.”

Oh, OK, you mean don’t call fouls at the end?  Yeah, that makes sense.  ”Hey, guys, I know we’ve been calling fouls for the first 37 minutes or so, but in the final three minutes, you guys have free reign to do whatever you want and we’ll swallow the whistle.”

It was obvious to just about everyone that the quick whistle in the Wichita State-Louisville game was just a bad call.  The refs lost sight of the ball for a nano-second and they blew the play dead.  It was a bad call, that’s all.

The much-discussed charge in the Syracuse-Michigan game could have been called either way.  So, do BOTH ways count as “I hate it when the refs take over the game”?  If he calls Michigan for a block there, do we still say, “Let the players decide the game”?

If it’s a foul, call it.

That should be all there is to it.

Granted, not all the calls are good, or right, but NOT calling fouls down the stretch wouldn’t be the answer, either.

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I’ll have Joe Unitas on Monday’s D&L Window Tinting Morning Reaction to discuss the family feud involving the selection of Joe Flacco to play Johnny Unitas in parts of the upcoming movie “Unitas We Stand”.  Maybe I’m in the minority, but the use of Flacco is curious, to me at least, although I can’t imagine he was selected in some attempt to jab at John Unitas, Jr., who called Joe “a goofball” and claimed him unfit to portray his late father in the film.

I’m assuming Flacco was chosen to give the film some much needed box office push, if the whole project even gets to the finish line.  A smart marketing person would probably give the move a thumbs-up, since people going to the movie is one of the only ways the project becomes profitable.

Family money (and this coming from someone who has zero wealth in his extended family) must be a terrible thing to fight over…we’ve all seen it cause great strife amongst people that should know better.

It’s a shame that money has created this chasm between the two Unitas boys.

Flacco might be smart to just say, “I don’t know…maybe I shouldn’t involve myself in this thing.”

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The Astros are off to a 1-5 start, which begs the ONLY question that matters right now as it relates to Houston.

“How on earth did they win one?”

If you found $100 under your mattress and you were forced to bet on the Astros and their win total on June 1, would you say they’ll have more than 12.5 wins or less?

I’d take under 12.5.  They might not have double digits by then.

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Another nice win for the Capitals last night at home over Tampa Bay.

This is the best Ovechkin has looked in two or three years.  He’s actually trying now.

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Everyone is making a big deal that Adam Jones lost a ball in the sun on Sunday in the loss to Minnesota.

That’s better than losing his glove in Fells Point.

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I’ll be in Augusta later tonight and will wake up bright and early Tuesday morning ready to walk the storied grounds of Augusta National Golf Club.  I’m staying through Wednesday.

I’m going with Matt Kuchar to win this year.  I think he’ll turn back a spirited Sunday charge from the likes of Tiger Woods and Dustin Johnson.  I have a feeling Graeme McDowell might even be in the mix too.  But, Kuchar is my pick to win his first major championship.

I know what you’re thinking:  ”Drew, what do you know?”

Yeah, you’re right.  After all, I’m the clown who picked Louis Oosthuizen last year and we all know how that turned out for him.  He lost in a playoff after Bubba Watson hit the luckiest shot in the history of golf on the first playoff hole.

Have a great couple of days with Nestor and I’ll be back on Thursday morning.

DF

 

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