Thursday Night Notes

Ouch. I had a very, very, very rough day of Match Play forecasting. Of my picks for the final four yesterday only one – lowly Ian Poulter – is still standing it was a bloodbath. Tiger looked mortal. Actually, he looked like what he is – a guy coming off a major surgery who has been out of action for eight months. It was a lousy time for him to become human. The carnage means that I like Camilo Villegas more than ever right now. That means, of course, that he will get pulverized tomorrow.

Baseball salaries are so bizarre. Average old players make a fortune, but good young players work for peanuts. Case in point – Tim Lincecum , fresh off winning his first (of many, possibly) Cy Young award, has signed a one year contract with the Giants. The tab – $650,000. A-Rod almost makes that per game. Until a player makes it to arbitration he works for relative peanuts. At that price, Lincecum could be the biggest pitching bargain in history.

Johan Santana missed a start today with a sore elbow. I’m sure that’s just the aches and pains of spring training and nothing to worry about, but it still probably makes some people in the Mets’ organization very nervous. I don’t particularly like the Mets, but I would love to see Santana light it up this year.

I loved the move that the Pittsburgh Penguins made today. They badly need secondary scoring, and they got some in the form of Chris Kunitz. He’s an underappreciated offensive threat who has been with Anaheim. He is a selfless linemate, and will help one of the top two lines immensely. In exchange they only had to give up Ray Whitney. He’s a nice defenseman, but he was pretty much redundant given the presence of Sergei Gonchar – a better power play presence than Whitney by far. The Pens also got Eric Tangradi, a 20 year old prospect who has 87 points in 52 games in his last year of junior hockey in Belleville of the Ontario Hockey League. This deal moves Pittsburgh forward now and later. I have said for a while now that I like their chances of getting back into a playoff position before the season ends, and this certainly doesn’t change that.

Huge, huge, huge win for my beloved Wolverines. They just finished off a nine point win at home against number 16 Purdue. That’s a massive boost for their tournament hopes. They now travel to Wisconsin this Sunday and Minnesota next Sunday. One win over those two and we are probably in the field. After the way we played tonight I am beginning to believe again. That means my soul will likely be crushed, but that’s what being a Michigan fan is all about.

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