Welcome back, sports fans! I’m Sebastian Maldonado bringing you all of the latest news in sports. This week’s headlines include a scare in the Miami Heat, baseball fever, and the demise of a franchise.
The MLB Playoff race is still on fire. Colorado seems to be pulling away the NL Wild Card from arms reach. They also seem to be catching up to the Dodgers. The Cardinals and Phillies are pulling away their leads in the divisions. The Al Central is too close to call. Yet, Detroit is in the lead. The Angels are also pulling away in the AL West.
The Yankees are also keeping their lead over the Red Sox in the Al East. However, Boston has kept their Wild Card lead over the Rangers and Rays. Boston has been making moves to secure a postseason spot. They released Brad Penny, making him a free agent. They also traded for Billy Wagner off waivers. The Mets will get two players to be named later.
The NFL preseason has had quarterback battles within the Lions. Other teams are set whether they name their starters, rest them/give them more playing time, and signing them to long-term deals. The 49ers are set with their starting quarterback: Shaun Hill. Coach Mike Singletary named him the starter due to his performance last season. Jets Coach Rex Ryan named Mark Sanchez the season opener starter. The Chargers also are set, locking up Phillip Rivers for a 6-year, $93 million extension. $38 million of his contract is guaranteed to Rivers. In other QB news, Bengals QB Carson Palmer is likely to miss another preseason game after suffering an ankle injury against New Orleans.
Brett Favre wants to play the entire first half in the Vikings’ next preseason game. He might have to convince his teammates that he can lead them to the Super Bowl. Numerous reports state a schism between the team whether Favre should be the starting quarterback or the back-ups (Tavaris Jackson or Sage Rosenfields). Coach Brad Childress denies the rumored schism, saying it’s only a matter of opinion.
This just in: Michael Vick could start tonight’s game against the Jaguars. The report comes from an anonymous source in the Philadelphia Associate Press. The Eagles have set numerous plays designed for Vick, according to the person who requested anonymity because he was not authorized to discuss the game plan. ESPN first reported the quarterback would play in the first quarter.
The UFC has announced their heavyweight champion Brock Lesnar’s next opponent. Lesnar will take on the undefeated Shane Carwin on November 21. Both are powerhouse wrestlers, and both finish their opponents very quickly. Their match will be highlighted with the returning Tito Ortiz against UFC Hall of Famer Mark Coleman. Speaking of heavyweights, UFC 102 is this Saturday at 10PM eastern. Its main event features former heavyweight champions Randy Couture against Antonio Minotauro Nogueira. The winner will likely get a title shot against Lesnar or Carwin. Prediction: Couture in 3 via unanimous decision.
Time for the issues to be heard in: The Athlete’s Court!
- Nuggets F Renaldo Balkman has been arrested on suspicion of driving under the influence in Florida. He was arrested by Temple Terrace, Florida officers at 4 a.m. Saturday after he refused a blood-alcohol test, according to a police report on the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office Web site. Nuggets executive Mark Warkentien said the team was aware of Balkman’s arrest but declined further comment “out of respect for the legal process.”
- Former NBA referee Tim Donaghy has been put back in jail for a federal rule violation. He was being held without bond Tuesday for a federal rule violation, according to Hillsborough County jail records. Donaghy was being held in a halfway house after a stint in a federal prison. He was scheduled to be released in October.
Time for the magic man to take over!
The New York Mets have suffered like no other team. Injuries, trades, and bad management have claimed the Mets in every painful way imaginable. Only Luis Castillo and Daniel Murphy are the only opening day starters still playing. Yet, is this what they deserve?
The Mets’ pain and suffering began when Carlos Delgado became the first man down. Since then, nearly half of the roster has been put on the DL. Here is a list of every Met injured during the year:
Jose Reyes, Ramon Martinez, JJ Putz, John Maine, Carlos Beltran, Fernando Martinez, Fernando Nieve, Jonothan Niese, Alex Cora, David Wright, Johan Santana, and Oliver Perez.
That’s not all. They fired former VP of player development Tony Bernazard, who challenged minor leaguers to a fight. He was also a big influence in changing the Mets coaching staff. Omar Minaya, Mets GM and close friend of Bernazard, challenged a NY Daily News reporter about his credibility. They traded Ryan Church for Jeff Francouer because of a speculated feud with manager Jerry Manuel. They traded Billy Wagner and cut Ramon Castro.
Is this what they deserve? No team deserves this. No team deserves to be put into the obscurity of baseball, let alone any sport. The Mets have had more low moments than any other team, including the Pirates and Nationals. Why are they worse than them? All the hype, all the propaganda, all the excitement led to nothing. Now, all the Mets can do is start over and wait for next year. They have plenty of time for 2010.
- Shaquille O’Neal is a man of his word. I the recent episode of “Shaq Vs.,” he made a bet with volleyball gold medalists Misty May-Trenor and Kerri Walsh that if his team lost, he would wear a pink speedo and walk on the beach. Shaq lost and lived up to the bet. For those that can stomach the footage, here’s the link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-9DRxN4NzEQ&feature=related.
Heat F Michael Beasley has checked into a Houston rehabilitation center. The Miami Herald reported this is connected to a violation he committed during last summer’s NBA rookie transition program. Beasley is scheduled to be ready for the Heat’s training camp. I would like to wish Beasley nothing but the best on his road to recovery.
Well, that’s it for today. I will be on vacation for a while to focus on college. I will be back to give you in-depth analysis on the upcoming NFL and NBA seasons, the World Series, and the big fights coming up in boxing and mixed martial arts. If you disagree with anything I say, feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or leave a comment below. I look forward to hearing your opinions and criticism. Until then, see you next time you KNUCKLEHEADS!!!
Copyright © 2007 by Sebastian Maldonado