News & Notes
- The Tigers had a three-year record that was the worst in the game and now have a midseason record that’s the best in the game.
- As much as I like the Oakland A’s squad, the Angels cannot be counted out at this point. Name a better rotation than Jered Weaver, Santana, Colon, Escobar and Lackey. Not to mention their bullpen and even more talent just waiting for their chance in the minors. Speaking of, if you have roster room, go ahead and stash Howie Kendrick, you’ll thank me later.
- It’s pretty ridiculous that a team featuring Mark Prior, Kerry Wood, Carlos Zambrano and last year’s deserving MVP-winner has the third worst record in baseball at the break. The Cubs figured they could be the next team after the 2004 Red Sox and 2005 White Sox to break a curse. They figured they could stay healthy, too.
- One of the biggest story lines in the second half has to be whether Joe Mauer can flirt with a .400 average or not. Hopefully he at least keeps it close for a while.
- With all the grumbling over All-Star snubs, including me, one forgotten name is Jim Leyland. It’s safe to say he’s done a better job managing than Eric Wedge has this year.
- Even though they haven’t won since 1996, maybe there’s hope for the NL All-Star team this year, as they are a career 4-0 in All-Star games played in Pittsburgh.
- A’s GM Billy Beane recently banned beer from the Oakland clubhouse, home and away. For home games, the visitors clubhouse will be dry as well. This was a reaction in part to Esteban Loaiza’s recent DUI but also something Beane said he should have done years ago.
- A GQ Magazine article reports that NBA groupies target bad boys like Allen Iverson and Rasheed Wallace, with GQ writer Lisa DePaulo proclaiming that this “isn’t just kinky, it’s smart business.” Of course.
- With the recent talk of baseball betting here at RotoScoop, I thought it’d be interesting to take a look at tonight’s opportunity – the home run derby. First off, let’s take a quick glance at PNC Park. The power alley in left, which reaches 410 feet at its deepest, and the 21-foot wall in right can be a challenge for tonight’s hitters. However, there is a short porch in right, seemingly benefiting left-handed hitters. David Ortiz could do some damage with the 320-foot line down right field. But at BoDog.com’s modest +270 line, and Big Papi’s past poor derby stamina, there might be a better bet out there.
- Remember, there is a six-foot wall in left, so a right-handed batter winning this competition isn’t completely out of the question. I’m thinking Troy Glaus for a couple reasons. Mainly, this bet is difficult and pretty much a crapshoot, but Glaus is for some reason the least favored of all the participants. He has been bothered by some leg injuries and has only two home runs in his last 17 games. Still, one of them came Sunday, and the guy has one of the best power strokes in the game. Don’t go crazy or anything, as this type of bet is obviously not a very safe one, but Glaus is listed at a lucrative +1000. With only one returning bomber from last year and a field that is very open, go Glaus and at the very least, the derby will become even more watchable.
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