Yankees’ Michael Pineda 10 game suspension
After Wednesday nights Red Sox/Yankees game, many fans had to be wondering what is on Michael Pineda’s mind as well has his neck. He was ejected for having a foreign substance on his person in the 2nd inning after Boston manager John Farrell called to the ump’s attention a brown mark on his neck, which ended up being pine tar. Pineda will not appeal the ruling and will serve immediately. This is an odd subject, because it is against the rules to doctor the baseball but pine tar is not banded. Batters use it for grip and it is readily available. However, rosin is also technically doctoring a baseball right and that is right behind the mound. The bottom line is this unwritten rule needs to be explained now, there is too much grey for me. And furthermore, as discussed on the Baseball Buffet, where were the Yankees coaching staff on this? Yankees manager Joe Girardi said he didn’t see it, but why hadn’t the managers talked to Pineda after the first time he was caught? It is known everyone uses tar on the ball, so why not teach him the proper way to use it where you don’t get caught. Farrell didn’t want to say anything but it was so obvious that you almost have to. GM Brian Cashman was not happy about this situation because it embarrasses the Yankees so we will have to see how this snowballs.
New York Knicks fire coach Mike Woodson
Early Monday it became official that the New York Knicks relieved Mike Woodson and his entire staff of their duties. First off, I feel bad for Woody. I don’t feel he deserved to be fired, he did a great job here. But I always said we couldn’t win a ring with him and now with Jackson in the fold as a GM, he deserves the right to bring in his guys. For it to work, a GM needs to hire his coach because you can’t go in as a GM with a 5 year contract and not have your guy to make it work. You’ll be out of the job and not done all you can to win. Jackson also needed to change the culture in NY, from coaches, players, execs, everyone. This is a franchise that has won one playoff series in 14 years, so it is painfully obvious that what we have been doing isn’t working. The culture has accepted the losing as long as we make headlines, sell out the Garden and have stars in the front row. Jackson has to change all that and it starts with the coach.
There was a NY Daily News report that came out saying Knicks owner James Dolan wanted to fight some of Jackson’s firings. They have since refuted that story, but it’s not hard to imagine that being the case. Dolan has meddled in former GM Donny Walsh’s business (i.e. bringing in Melo) and he has always be the Knicks worst enemy. But it’s also fair to note that the Knicks and Daily News do not get along to say the least. Dolan needs to step back and let the Zen Master work, period. Jackson conducted his exit interviews and it was clear the team lost their way and didn’t buy in. Change must come on swift wings…
NBA Playoffs, who’s in trouble?
We have seen some Game 3’s in the NBA First Round Playoffs not exactly go to plan, and some have. The Thunder and Pacers losses were not foreseen by all, but not a big shock. The Warriors losing at home was a bit of a shock, but not if you think they had a chance in the series. The Thunder will take their series against the Grizzles, because even though they lost I think they found their way in the 4th quarter to even get it to OT. The Bulls are the most dangerous team in the playoffs, but they are facing the worst opponent they could match up with. The Wizards are young and they have a lot of offensive firepower. The Chicago Bulls just can’t score enough to be dangerous, they miss not having Rose and Deng to score at will. The Brooklyn Nets should rebound from Game 2 at home and put their veteran knowledge to good use. The Golden State Warriors are missing Andrew Bogut in the middle and they can’t stop Blake Griffin. The series will be close, but the Los Angeles Clippers should get to the next round with their inside play. The Houston Rockets are done because the wrong hero showed up in Game 2. Dwight Howard can’t lead this team offensively, he isn’t consistent enough. James Harden needs to be the guy and he hasn’t left the regular season yet. Oh and Aldridge is a beast and can’t be stopped right now, he is getting any shot he wants at any time.
But the Indiana Pacers look so bad it’s scary. Roy Hibbert needs to be benched because when you look at the box score and see only 2 rebounds from him, there is a problem. When you look at the energy of the Pacers and see only Lance Stevenson showing any type of emotion, there is a problem. When Paul George, who was in MVP talks not too long ago, looks lost and disgusted at everyone: there is a problem. When you hear rumors of fights before Game 1 and Vogel’s job on the line: there is a problem. I thought the NBA Playoffs would be able to snap this Indiana Pacers team out of the funk, but there is a problem.
NFL Playoff Expansion
What ever happened to the old saying that if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it? The NFL has been seriously considering expanding the playoffs to add 2 more team, one from each conference, to the mix as early as next year. NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell has said it won’t hurt anything and he’s all for it. While I’m tired of seeing 10-6 teams just miss the wild card and 8-8 division winners host first round games, I just can’t get on board with more teams being added. I think the teams that get in are the teams that have a shot to win. The reason we have 8-8 or 7-9 teams in is because of league expansion and 4 divisions in each conference. So how do we plan to fix it, expand the whole playoffs. It works the way it is now, they just want more revenue and this is the end all reason. If you really wanted to be fair you would add all teams in or dump undeserving division winners. It’s all about the money at the end of the day, this is why Goodell wants to be in London also.