Dec 23

Wright to play for Team USA ….

WRIGHT: To play for Team USA. PHOTO: Mets

WRIGHT: To play for Team USA. PHOTO: Mets

After Alex Rodriguez opted to play for the Dominican Republic in the World Baseball Classic this spring, and with Chipper Jones expected to be the DH, third base opened up for David Wright. Team USA will have an all-New York left side of the infield with the Yankees’ Derek Jeter at shortstop.

Wright will likely be the only Met playing for Team USA, but the Mets could also send Carlos Beltran and Carlos Delgado (Puerto Rico), Johan Santana and Francisco Rodriguez (Venezuela), and Jose Reyes (Dominican Republic).

I found it interesting that Phillies Ryan Howard, Brad Lidge and Cole Hamels said they preferred getting their work in during spring training and preparing for the season to play for the team that pays them. Yankees’ CC Sabathia and AJ Burnett said the same thing.

Yes, I am well aware a player can get hurt anywhere, but I’m especially wary about pitchers throwing in game conditions that early in the spring. But, that’s just me. Does anybody have a problem with players leaving teams during spring training to prepare for the WBC and exposing themselves to injury.

Oct 29

Talkin’ Baseball: Does it end tonight?

Talkin' Baseball: Rays trying to take Series home.

Talkin' Baseball: Rays trying to take Series home.

Cole Hamels will be out of the game, but that doesn’t necessarily mean the Rays have the advantage for the end of Game 5 tonight. They might have gained a sense of momentum after tying the game, but let’s not forget the Phillies have a rested bullpen.

As the weather becomes a storyline in this World Series, unfortunately we could be hearing a lot tonight and in the near future about the showcase event being played at a neutral site. Yeah, that was me you heard screaming.

There are some things that shouldn’t be considered, and that’s one of them.

Oct 27

It could all end tonight ….

Hamels: Can wrap up title for Phillies tonight.

Hamels: Can wrap up title for Phillies tonight.

The World Series started with classic hopes. Both teams made destiny arguments with their grit persona that suggested we could have a Series for the ages. We still could, but the Rays have to beat Cole Hamels tonight and take it to Game 7 back in Tampa.

Let’s face it, the odds are long.

The last two games remind us how fragile things could be. Game 3 is the turning point of the Series, but the Phillies scored in the first and ninth innings with the benefit of a wild pitch putting the runner in scoring position.

A lot has happened to the Rays, but mostly their offense has disappeared since the end of Game 5 of the ALCS with Boston.

I’ll be blogging Game 5 with the hope it is compelling enough to where I won’t switch over to watch Peyton Manning. Join me tonight at 8.-JD

Oct 26

Talkin’ Baseball: Rays seek to even Series.

Talkin' Baseball: Could we have another classic?

Talkin' Baseball: Could we have another classic?

Is it possible for tonight to eclipse last night in terms of drama? Would be a classic if it does.

It’s “must win” for the Rays tonight because Cole Hamels starts tomorrow for the Phillies. Hamels is the best starter in the Series and you fully expect him if not to win, surely pitch well.

I said last night I believed the Game 3 winner would take the Series and see no reason be back off that tonight.

Oct 24

Gooood morning/scanning the headlines.

Some tidbits to start your day.

Some tidbits to start your day.

Good morning ….

Taking a peak at what’s going on this morning.

-Rain forecast for Philly tomorrow. Game 3 might be postponed. I have no problem with that because there’s Ohio State v. Penn State. Go Bucks. If everything is pushed back, Phillies say Cole Hamels will pitch Monday regardless. No word on what the Rays will do.

-It’s ironic as we brace for a rainout Commissioner Bud Selig is talking about shortening the World Series by two or three days by eliminating the off days. MLB added off-days when it opted to start the Series on Wednesday instead of the weekend. Eliminating off days won’t seem like such a good idea if there’s a coast-to-coast Series.

-Jake Peavy is available from the Padres. Early speculation has the Braves a contender, but GM Frank Wren said the club isn’t going to part with its best prospects.