Thoughts From A Long Weekend Sunday

The Dodgers look to have a live arm to help with the problems at the bottom of their rotation. They rushed their next phenom, Clayton Kershaw, into the lineup straight from Double-A on Sunday. They needed his arm because they have no others – they cut Esteban Loaiza on Saturday because he couldn’t get it done anymore, and they hadn’t found anyone better. They are pretty desperate right now, too – they play 17 straight without a rest, so they will need five arms to keep the Diamondbacks within sight. Kershaw was the first high schooler chosen in the 2006 draft when he went to the Dodgers seventh overall. He was the national player of the year as a high school senior. The 20 year old was 0-3 in Double-A, but he wasn’t getting much run support. His ERA was only 2.28, and the most eye-opening number was his 47 Ks in 43 innings. He has a solid fastball, a nasty curve that drops more than 20 mph from that fastball, and a circle change. His first appearance in the pros was a decent one. He lasted six innings, striking out seven with just one walk. He allowed five hits and two earned runs. He didn’t get a decision, but his new team did beat the Cards. On Tuesday I’m going to take a look at how to deal with these phenoms as they come along.

The biggest single day of car racing of the year didn’t disappoint. Lewis Hamilton won an exciting F1 race in Monte Carlo to start off the day. Scott Dixon followed it up with win in the Indy 500. That result was sweet justice for him – he was the fastest car all month and he stayed out of trouble in a race that was far from accident-free. The biggest non-story of the day was Danica Patrick – she ended up 22nd when she was taken out in pit lane by Ryan Briscoe. The best part was that she looked like she was going to beat Briscoe senseless. The nigh ended with a win by Kasey Kahne in the longest NASCAR race of the year, the Coca Cola 600. As is so often the case, Tony Stewart was the biggest story – he should have won, but he gave up his lead with three laps left when he bumped the wall and got a flat tire.

The Belmont is still two weeks away, but there is no end of intrigue on that front. Big Brown has a small crack in his left front foot. He’s missed two days of training and could miss three more. He’s getting the best possible care, and it’s pretty likely that he’ll be just fine by race time. More interestingly, there are rumors out there that Kent Desormeaux’s agent is angling to get his charge the mount on Casino Drive in the Belmont. The rider of that horse will be named on Wednesday. It seems almost impossible that this would be true sine Desormeaux is on Big Brown, but it opens up a million different possibilities for conspiracy theorists.

Joakim Noah got arrested in Gainesville for drinking in public and marijuana possession. Also, Noah is an idiot.

Phil Mickelson won this weekend with a spectacular wedge shot on the 72nd hole to set up winning birdie putt. Now all he has to do is put together a knockout blow like that against Tiger Woods instead of Rod Pampling.

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