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Friday, July 13, 2007

Into the Future . . .

With the second dullest three day stint in sports behind us, the NBA All-Star weekend being the first, it’s time to look toward the more exciting half of the sports year.

With Kyle Kendrick nailing down yet another solid start, I’m thinking this really is the year we end the playoff drought in baseball. This is assuming Brett Myers returns soon, which admittedly seems less and less assured, and Ryan Howard, Chase Utley, and Cole Hammels stay healthy. It would be nice to see “Stand” Pat Gillick actually pull-off a trade for a pitcher, but I think they get there without it.

Hate Charlie Manuel all you want, and I’m certainly not a supporter of the manager, but the Phillies do improve in the second half under him. The Mets are showing some frayed edges, and the Braves aren’t what they used to be. It’s not a prediction, just a gut feeling that playoff baseball returns.

I usually have a count-down to Eagles training camp going by now. I still don’t trust that Andy Reid will run the ball, but if he does I think we could see an incredible season. They still screwed up by not re-signing Jeff Garcia, so we have to hope Donovan McNabb stays healthy for a change.

Even I can’t muster much excitement for the winter teams. The Sixers will return to the playoffs if they let Andre Miller play, but if rumblings about Lou Williams playing more and a trading deadline move of Miller are true, I’ll be done until Billy King is booted. The Flyers have their chests pushed out, but they can wake me in May.


Week-in-Review:

· Anyone that thought making the MLB All-Star game count would make it more entertaining can stop thinking. Just compare Alex Rodriguez tiptoeing into the catcher’s tag versus Pete Rose bulling over Ray Fosse in 1970. It’s about players giving a damn, and too many don’t.
· Those thinking David Beckham can save soccer in the United States are forgetting one thing: he’ll still be playing soccer.
· Watching the Phillies help the Colorado grounds crew cover the field during a nasty rain storm last Sunday is something people should be telling their kids about in 30 years. In an era of selfish, millionaire athletes, these guys just acted like people and helped out. It was awesome.
· By Tuesday, Daily News Live questioning if Pat Burrell was on the field during the Phillies’ effort to help out in Colorado. The media can stop scoffing at its role in Negadelphia.

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