Friday, August 27, 2010

Opining on Strasburg, an 18-game NFL sked and advice from Pete Rose

Spraying opinions to all fields . . .
• I was saddened to hear that Stephen Strasburg’s arm injury apparently is serious enough to warrant Tommy John surgery. This is a terrible blow for him and for baseball. The Washington Nationals pitching phenom had captivated even casual fans with his 100 mph heater, nasty curveball and fearlessness on the mound. Those of us privileged to have watched him pitch at Frontier Field in Rochester a few months back could tell that the kid was something special. Many pitchers have made successful comebacks from this type of elbow injury, but few have been as good as they were before their setbacks. Let’s hope this young man is one of the few who comes back even stronger.
• Speaking of injuries, I think the proposal to expand the NFL regular season to 18 games will wind up hurting the sport by shortening the careers of numerous players. As it is, few players – particularly at the star positions of quarterback and running back – make it through an entire season healthy. And given the size and speed of the modern athlete injuries are sure to mount with the addition of two more games-worth of car-like collisions. Hey, I, too, hate having to endure four- to five-exhibition games each summer, but this isn’t the solution. I say cut the preseason to two or three games and keep a 16-game slate. The human body wasn’t designed to play 18 regular-season NFL games, plus playoffs.
• Got a kick out of Pete Rose saying that Roger Clemens would have received more lenient treatment had he just fessed up in the beginning. Yeah, Pete, just like you did with your situation, right? If I recall correctly, you vehemently denied you bet on baseball for years, and only came clean so you could sell more copies of your book.
• So how is it that Clemens is indicted for perjury, but Rafael Palmiero isn’t? If I’m not mistaken, didn’t Raf test positive for performance-enhancing drugs after pointing his finger in defiance at that Congressional hearing?
• And, while we’re on the subject of cheaters, have you heard how Sammy Sosa is upset that the Chicago Cubs haven’t retired his number? Ah, Sammy, I think they’ll put your jersey in mothballs on the same day you get inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame. Which will be the day after never.
• I believe Carmelo Anthony would look pretty spiffy in a New York Knicks uniform.
• I could be wrong, but I think Chan Gailey has more important issues to worry about than some knucklehead twentysomethings heckling his quarterback at Bills training camp.
* Just when we New Yorkers think our state government can't be any more dysfunctional, we learn about a law on the books where there's a tax on sliced bagels.

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