Archive for February 9th, 2017

On What?

Name the four likely Opening Day starters for the ‘Stros who will be playing in the World Baseball Classic?

The Chron’s John McClain had a post-Super Bowl piece on an upgrade to NRG is in order if we want to host another Super Bowl. Here is how it starts:

Houston did a terrific job hosting Super Bowl LI.

If you don’t believe me because I’m biased, I think you’ll believe members of the print, broadcast and online media who offered unsolicited praise about the exceptional job our city did.

A lot of city leaders should take a bow for a job well done.

Not many cities can brag about providing more excitement than Houston.

New England defeating Atlanta 34-28 in the first Super Bowl to require overtime came on the heels of Kris Jenkins’ three-point buzzer-beater that gave Villanova a victory over North Carolina in the NCAA championship game.

NRG Stadium hosted both of those title games, and city leaders want more. But keep this in mind: We went 12 years between Super Bowls. If Houston wants to host another one, it’s going to have to spend a lot of money to upgrade the stadium.

Here is the entire read: http://www.houstonchronicle.com/sports/columnists/mcclain/article/Houston-did-super-job-but-stadium-needs-to-be-10915845.php.

On what? Upgrade what? McClain never mentions any specific upgrade. No paint job, no repaving the parking lots, no redo the bathrooms. Let’s hear some complaints about the facility before we start talking upgrades that we all know who will pay the bill.

There is another story in today’s Chron on NRG upgrades and again there are no specifics. Here it is: http://www.houstonchronicle.com/sports/texans/article/Ric-Campo-believes-NRG-improvements-essential-to-10919384.php?cmpid=btfpm.

From The Score:

If the Houston police do eventually find Tom Brady‘s missing jersey, they will ensure that it’s returned to the quarterback safe and sound. However, the piece of missing sports memorabilia isn’t something the police department’s losing sleep over.

While Texas Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick announced that he’s enlisting the Texas Rangers Division to assist the Houston Police Department in its search for Brady’s missing Super Bowl jersey, Chief Art Acevedo downplayed the seriousness of the task on Tuesday.

“It might be the highest priority for (the) lieutenant governor, (but) I can tell you we had three homicides the night of the Super Bowl in the city of Houston,” Acevedo told 104.9 The Horn, according to Maribel Molina of Statesman. “We’d like to find it, but I don’t think we’re burning the midnight oil worrying about a jersey.

“It’s just not the biggest, greatest importance in the big scheme of things.”

Acevedo knows there is plenty of media attention on the jersey search, but he’s made sure to remind his staff to keep its priorities straight.

“I told those guys, ‘Hey guys, we’ll give it a run, but let’s keep things in perspective, it’s a jersey,'” Acevedo said.

I feel better.  Now there is story out that it may not have been stolen after all.

Once again, where is the outcry? I am talking about the need to make a major change in MLB and extra innings. This is ridiculous. Check this from Fox Sports:

Major League Baseball, in its ongoing effort to address the sluggish pace of games, intends to test a rule change in the minor leagues this season that would put a runner on second base to start extra innings, Yahoo Sports reported Wednesday.

The test would take place this summer in the Gulf Coast and Arizona Leagues, the lowest levels of the minors, with the purpose of gaining a greater understanding of the effects of the change. The rule — an offshoot of which is already being used in international play — would apply to every inning from the 10th inning on.

One obvious effect would be an increased likelihood of scoring in extra innings, resulting in (hopefully) shorter games and fewer bullpen-destroying marathons that last five hours and beyond. From Yahoo:

“Let’s see what it looks like,” said Joe Torre, the longtime major league manager who’s now MLB’s Chief Baseball Officer and a strong proponent of the testing. “It’s not fun to watch when you go through your whole pitching staff and wind up bringing a utility infielder in to pitch. As much as it’s nice to talk about being at an 18-inning game, it takes time.”

The move would have many interesting strategic side effects. For one, it would give a decided advantage to a home team that gets out of the top half of an extra inning unscathed. Their leadoff hitter could opt to bunt in an attempt to move the winning run to third with less than two outs, and a sacrifice fly or any hit would then win the game. There’s also the matter of who that runner on second would be. Would it be the next batter due up, or a pinch runner at a manager’s discretion? The Yahoo report didn’t specify how that would work and said that details of the rule were not yet final.

Even if this rule is a success in the minor leagues — MLB’s standard proving ground for potential rule changes — it would “likely take years” for us to see this being implemented in the majors, the report said.

Also this week, MLB proposed to do away with the intentional walk, in another effort to speed up games.

Dumb, dumb, dumb!

Carlos Beltran and Carlos Correa will be playing for Puerto Rico, Jose Altuve for Venezuela, and Alex Bregman for Team USA of course.

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