October 20th, 2014
The Dodgers have taken quick and sudden action after being eliminated from the playoffs just over a week ago. As we expected, Ned Colletti paid the price, as he was demoted to a special advisor, while Rays GM Andy Friedman was hired as director of baseball operations, and he will hire a new General Manager. Ok, I get it. Friedman accomplished a lot in Tampa with few resources, and at face value, this could be a good move. However, I think the LA front office is badly overreacting to this entire situation. Just because the Royals are a small market team that made it to the World Series, that doesn’t mean the Dodgers need to operate like one to get there. The Red Sox and Tigers have consistently been in the hunt the last few years, and they’ve been spending plenty of money. It’s about spending money in the right places, while also developing your farm system. Hopefully Friedman and the rest of the Dodgers see it this way before blowing up the team, otherwise the Dodgers could be a lot further away from winning the World Series than they are now.
On to some college football, where watching UCLA football makes you want to jump off the Santa Monica Pier. The Bruins barely beat a horrendous Cal team in the Bay Area on Saturday by a measly two points. Cal Quarterback Jared Goff clearly lost his mind at the end of the game, putting the ball in the air and throwing an interception, when all his team needed to win the game was a field goal. We’re halfway through the season and it’s very clear now, UCLA’s talent is much better than the level of football it actually plays. Four of their five wins have been close games against teams they should have blown off the field. They’ve only put together one complete game, which was against Arizona State. Even Brett Hundley looks overrated, as he should have shredded this crappy Cal defense to pieces. His 330 yards are deceiving, because we didn’t see much of a vertical attack, against a defense that had the worst secondary in the nation.
Over at the Coliseum, Cody Kessler threw a ridiculous 7 touchdown passes in a blowout against Colorado. The last time he did that, he was playing Playstation against his roommate in his dorm room. This win was fools gold for the Trojans, and Kessler in particular. Since I was there in person, I can’t think of a single one of those long passes that wasn’t lobbed up in the air, that wouldn’t have been intercepted by a halfway decent defense. Then again, that probably explains why Kessler has only one turnover on the season. Sark simply doesn’t let the guy throw down the field, and wants him to be more of a game manager. Kessler isn’t going to single handedly win games for USC, but he’s solid enough to be their starter. The Trojans still haven’t had their annual slip up in conference play against an opponent they should beat. That would make me weary going into their games against Utah, Washington State, and Cal.
There’s no doubt the best game of the college football season thus far was Notre Dame vs Florida State. Apparently, none of you had any idea that Notre Dame was capable of beating FSU, and should have. That’s also probably because most of you forgot that Everett Golson is 16-1 as a starting quarterback. I know most of you Irish fans want to strangle the referee that made that offensive pass interference call at the end of the game, but it was the right call, even though you hate to see a great game end that way. Besides, as long as ND wins out, they should absolutely be in the playoff, and who wouldn’t want to see a re-match at the Rose Bowl in January? I can’t tell you how much I laughed out loud when i heard Jimbo Fisher tell the media how much of a “high character” program he has. Still, this Jameis Winston autograph scandal doesn’t make any sense. How is he supposed to sign autographs if he can’t even spell his own name?
To the NFL, where my hopes and dreams have been shattered, because the Jaguars actually won a game by beating the Browns yesterday. Was that Sunday Night Football on NBC last night? Or an SEC non-conference game? The Seahawks are probably ready to send Pete Carroll to the Jaguars for a 9th round pick after losing to the Rams. Meanwhile, Percy Harvin is still weighing the pros and cons of being traded to the Jets. The pros include no more touchdowns being called back. The cons include no more touchdowns. Southern Californians needs to do everything they can to make sure the Raiders do not move back here. Apparently nobody wants to win the NFC South. The Cowboys are making it really tough to keep making jokes about them. At one point in that Charger-Chiefs game, I was wondering why Alex Smith is even on the field. The Chiefs might as well have been snapping the ball directly to Jamal Charles. Still, the Chargers faced a real team for the first time in a month and failed. The Jay Cutler implosion is in full effect in Chicago. Are the Redskins really going to start Colt McCoy next week? Terence Newman made the worst tackling attempt I have ever seen in an NFL game yesterday too….
We’re just two weeks into the NBA pre-season, and people are already freaking out about the Lakers and how bad they might be. I never said they were going to be good, however, I’m not going to draw any big conclusions after the team was blown out in their last three pre-season games. I don’t see anybody commenting on the fact the Clippers and Spurs have the same preseason record as the Lakers either. Byron Scott is absolutely right: this team shouldn’t be jacking up a bunch of three pointers every night. They don’t have the shooters, and they are going to be much more effective slowing the pace of the game down, while focusing on the defensive end of the floor. Their personnel doesn’t lend itself to playing any other style folks, regardless of whether or not it’s more entertaining.
On the ice, the Kings are off to a very impressive start, and they are hardly playing their best hockey. LA is taking advantage of a cushy 6 game home stand early on, and they’ve won 4 straight. I always say, the sign of a great team is one that can win when they aren’t at their best. The Kings are winning with dominant play from Jonathan Quick, and one line that is scoring, better known as “That’s 70’s Line”. They are also allowing more shots than a UC Santa Barbara frat party, and can’t seem to do much on the powerplay. All that and they’re still off to one of the fastest starts in the conference. Also, good job by Dean Lombardi to re-sign Jake Muzzin, except I’m not sure where that leaves Alec Martinez, Justin Williams, and Jarret Stoll when their contracts are up at the end of the season.
Great news guys! I finally got the IPhone 6 Plus. It looks like this…….
On to The Walking Dead, which turned out to be way better than I thought it would this week. I was completely expecting a much slower episode, but this episode was intense. Spoiler alert for those of you that haven’t seen it yet. Let’s summarize quickly. The group is out in the wilderness and back in survival mode when they run into Gabriel, a priest who was being ambushed by Walkers. The group saves Gabriel, who then led them to a Church, and later on a food bank, where they had to fend off some more Walkers. Rick and the rest of the group do not completely trust Gabriel and his motivations yet, and make it clear to him by telling him “You’re hiding something.” Near the end of the episode, Bob is letting some emotion out in the woods, and is attacked by Gareth. Bob is tied up, and when he regains consciousness, Gareth admits that he and his group and cannibals. Bob’s leg is also missing, as Gareth and his group have begun bbq’ing and eating him (wow, writing that was even more disturbing than reading it).
I don’t trust this Gabriel guy at all. There’s no way anybody could live in a world with Walkers for this long and be afraid of them, so Gabriel has to be a villain. I’m thinking he might have made a deal with the cannibals. I’m still trying to figure out why Bob was crying in the woods, prior to being attacked by Gareth. I think it might have been because he was actually bitten by a Walker while he was in the food bank. I wonder what that means for Gareth’s group, since they might be eating infected meat. Wow, that Gareth guy makes you want to punch him in the face when you listen to him talk. I’m also dying to find out what happened to Beth, and who is in the mysterious car that swooped her up. This season is getting good real fast!