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Friday, April 1, 2011

Rapid Fire Week-in-Review: Opening Day Edition 2011

I woke up to snow falling outside of my window. Ahh, Opening Day. Here’s my very Rapid Fire Week-in-Review as I wait for the first pitch:

• Injuries seemed like the only thing that would derail a Phillies’ World Series run, but nobody thought they would already have the upper hand on opening day. My preview of the Phillies season is very simple: If they don’t get a healthy Chase Utley back, they will struggle to win the division. I just have a feeling this could be Atlanta’s year. They can pitch very well, and may actually hit better than the Phillies. They can’t match the Phillies starting rotation, but I don’t think they’re far enough behind the Phillies talent for it to matter. Plus, the Phillies already have bullpen issues.

That said, I’m actually comfortable for now with Jose Contreres as the closer with Brad Lidge out possibly for half the season. I like what Charlie Manuel is doing today, moving Jimmy Rollins down in the lineup. Obviously, the Four Aces should keep them in the race all season.

If Utley really is healthy by the All-Star break, and the bats come back to life after last season’s second half swoon, they will compete for the World Series. I don’t see that happening, though.

• Luis Castillo is already an ex-Phillie. His most memorable move for the team was missing the first day of his 10-day tryout. Gotta love them Mets.

• I read a blurb, I think in the Inquirer, that Bud Selig said the World Series must be completed before November, and that was why MLB moved up the start of the season. It’s a step in the right direction, and weather would have been just as much of a crapshoot on Monday. But they need to shorten the season so that the summer game fits into summer-like weather. There’s even an outdoor stadium in Minnesota. Can’t wait to see any World Series they reach in the next 20 years.

• Lou Williams took a surprising step down the class meter. He recently released a song that I first heard via Where’s Weems this week, in which he essentially mocks going to school, studying, etc. Pathetic. And, by the way, is he really good enough not to be focusing on basketball? No.

• The Sixers showed some immaturity (on the court) this week, dropping an easy game to Sacramento. They bounced back nicely with wins over Chicago and Houston, but the habit of giving Andre Iguodala the ball at the end of games has got to stop. Despite his poor musical choices, Williams needs to be the guy with the ball at the end of games.

• Does 2-4 in their last 6 games sound like a Stanley Cup team to you? Me neither, Flyers fans.

• I don’t care about all of the “Cinderella” March Madness fans out there. This Final Four is weak. Kentucky versus Connecticut is the real title game, even if VCU or Butler wins Monday night. The biggest challenge that the major teams have in playing time mid-majors is taking them seriously. VCU nor Butler is the best college basketball team this season. They may win the Tournament, and they’ll be the winner of a single-elimination tournament. They deserve credit for getting this far. But I don’t see how anyone thinks they should have a chance to win the championship. If either team played the teams they beat to make the Final Four nine more times, they’re going 1-9 overall.

• LeBron James hid in the bathroom during introductions for the Miami Heat game in Cleveland this week. I’ll say it again, the man is not a winner and never will be.

ProFootball.com reported, “The league’s labor propaganda website, NFLLabor.com, contains a post listing all the great things the owners did for the players.” Note to Roger Goodell: No one cares. At all. Play football.

• Tweet of the Week: It comes from philaphillies, “The gates are open...let the games begin!!! #phils http://twitpic.com/4fpp6p.”

1 comment:

Pat Hilferty said...

Someone woke up on the wrong side of the blog. LOL