Seven Interesting Stories (At Least To Me)

1. There are only six guys in the majors with the last name Cabrera, but it seems like there are about 212. Every time I turn around another one is in the news. The latest did it in an impressive way – Cleveland second baseman Asdrubal Cabrera turned just the 14th unassisted triple play in major league history in the second game of a doubleheader against Toronto. He dove to catch a line drive, touched second for out number two, and the tagged Marco Scutaro, the guy who should own a hundred pizza places based on his name alone, to enter history. Troy Tulowitzki had one last season, and the previous unassisted play was in 2000.

2. That wasn’t the only crazy thing to happen in that game. I don’t know Cliff Lee, but I can only imagine that he is one angry dude right now. The ridiculously hot ace threw nine scoreless innings in that game to lower his already almost non-existent 0.81 ERA. The problem is that his team didn’t score any runs, either. The bullpen poured gas on the mound and lit it on fire in the tenth, allowing three runs. Lee should have had a brilliant complete game shutout. Instead, he threw 117 pitches and has nothing to show for it. On the plus side, his ERA is down to 0.67. That’s obscene. To be fair, we should note that Shaun Marcum is having a very solid year, and he was brilliant as well. He allowed just two hits in eight scoreless innings.

3. Detroit cruised to a third easy win against Dallas. This is as one-sided as a conference final can possibly be. A friend sent me an e-mail late in the game that said it well – “Dallas looks like a good junior team playing an NHL team”.

4. A-Rod is not going to be healthy and back in action in time for the Yanks’ series against the Mets this weekend. That’s the story, anyway. More likely, he knows how nasty fans in New York can be, and he has trips in the friendlier and more apathetic climes of Baltimore and Seattle after that. No one ever said A-Rod wouldn’t duck a tough spot.

5. The Lakers series just got tougher to figure out. Now we have to play psychologist, figuring out how much Kobe’s back injury is for real, and how much of it is just showmanship in an attempt to get an edge over Utah. There’s no question that he isn’t 100 percent. It just seems a bit odd that he showed up in front of the media wearing some funky electric stimulation device on his back. Teams and players are notoriously tight-lipped about injuries in the playoffs, and they never seem to tell the truth when they do rarely speak. Based on that, it’s pretty easy to concoct a conspiracy theory that would suggest that he isn’t in nearly as bad shape as his actions would suggest. The problem is that he’s the only player still active outside of LeBron James that singlehandedly can determine the outcome of his series based on his health.

6. We’ll have the Preakness field set in two days, but it is still pretty fluid. Recapturetheglory has pulled out of the race. Now Harlem Rocker, the undefeated horse trained by Todd Pletcher that Big Brown’s connections admitted was the only one that they were concerned about in the field, has decided to find an easier spot. That means that this is going to be a ridiculously easy field for Big Brown if he is anywhere near his best. The one thing that could make it a bit more interesting is the rumor that Gayego could give the race a try. He had a lousy Derby, but there is a lot to like about the Arkansas Derby winner. If nothing else, his presence would inflate Big Brown’s price from the microscopic to the merely ridiculously low.

7. The Celtics have now played five road games in these playoffs. They have yet to win or cover a single one. Despite what they accomplished this season, I find it hard to view them as a truly elite team with that on their record. If they can’t beat Atlanta or Cleveland how are they going to get past L.A., San Antonio or Charlotte.

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Posted by on May 12 2008. Filed under Sports Handicapping. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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