Thursday, December 9, 2004
DISCUSSION QUESTION: ANNOUNCERS
Good morning everyone! It's Thursday, which means tomorrow is Friday, so be sure to send me your response today for this week's Discussion Question! Yesterday, I discussed the Twins big decisions made late the night before. They signed Brad Radke and offered Corey Koskie arbitration. Today, not as much going on as far as the Twins go, so I am going to just discuss a number of random topics today. Some baseball, some basketball, some movie and TV and much more. So, let's get to it. If you have any thoughts or opinions on any of it, please e-mail me. Have a great day!
Corey Koskie commented today about how if he is going to take a discount to stay with the Twins, he wants a no trade clause included. Here is his comment from the article, "I can't take a hit here, then get traded somewhere." I happen to believe that this is a more than fair request. If the Twins are only offering him $8.25 million and other teams have offered him $16 million, then there has to be some incentive for him to stay. Yes, he lives here and so does his family. He likes it here. All that is great. But, $7.75 million!!! That's a lot of money. What Koskie fears is that he is giving up all this money to be loyal to the Twins yet, if the team goes bad, they can trade him at any time! The loyalty thing needs to go both ways, so I don't think Koskie is asking for too much.
It was a hoop-watching night for me last night! I went home from work, hopped on the treadmill for an hour and the Timberwolves game came on at 6:00 from Philadelphia. After that became a blow-out, I started watching the Gophers game at Nebraska on ESPN2.
The Wolves got absolutely embarrassed at home by the Mavs the night before despite a huge game by Kevin Garnett. Last night was a completely different story. The 76ers are bad! But it was the coming-out party for Eddie Griffin. I have written numerous times about how high his ceiling is. Well, last night in his hometown, Griffin was incredible! He scored 27 points (a career high) and grabbed 11 rebounds, his third straight double-double. He hit seven 3-pointers in 15 attempts last night, including six in the first half (tying James "Hollywood" Robinson for most 3s in a half... Remember, he hit 6 of them in about a two minute span!). The 6-11 Griffin knocks down three pointers at a high percentage, grabs rebounds and blocks shots! Wouldn't it be great to sign him long-term already?!
Latrell Sprewell missed Tuesday night's game. He was suspended for that game because of an unfortunate incident with a female fan at the Staples Center last weekend. Apparently she was taunting him and he yelled back at certain request to her! A request that was heard on the telecast. Sure, it would be funny to hear if you were watching a movie, but it was certainly not appropriate. However! Have you ever watched a Timberwolves game on TV? He is the greatest player in basketball, a great teammate and a good ambassador for the game, but I wonder if anyone in the league swears as much as Kevin Garnett. Every time the other team scores off of him, there is an expletive! And Fox Sports North has their mics in places so that the whole audience can hear it! So, the difference must be that it was directed at a fan, right? And that is going to cost Sprewell a game and 1/82nd of his salary? Last year, Shaquille O'Neal threw a few expletives out to a live audience and got a small fine. Fact is, the whole Pacers/Pistons/fans situation has made the NBA's Offices a lot more strict. Incidentally, Sprewell came back last night with 24 points on 9-14 shooting (5-8 from 3 point range). He is missed because of his speed, intensity and defense!
Halfway through the first half of the Gophers game at Nebraska, the Cornhuskers were ahead 19-5. I was thinking about how I wrote the other day that they would at least be competitive and you were probably thinking I was an idiot at that point. At halftime, the Gophers still had just 19 points. It was just a very sloppy game with bad ball handling, passing, shooting. Just bad! But in the second half, the Gophers crawled back into the game and finally overtook Nebraska. Vincent Grier, who struggled some but played 40 minutes, hit two huge three-pointers to clinch the win for Minnesota. He led the team with 17 points, but everyone contributed a little bit down the stretch, particularly Jeff Hagen and Brett Lawson. I found it interesting that this was the Gophers first road non-conference win since 2000. It was also Nebraska's first non-conference home loss in 17 games. Now the Gophers play six more non-conference games at home that they should win. That would mean that they would enter the conference schedule with a 10-3 record!
Since I bought my house, I have not spent as much time as I used to watching TV. I missed the last edition of The Bachelor or Big Brother. I haven't been watching The Amazing Race, one of my favorite reality shows. To top it off, I haven't even watched Survivor. I don't even watch many sitcoms or dramas anymore like I used to. There are really just two shows that I absolutely never miss. First, I can't miss Joey! What a great show! It is even better than I thought it would be. I try to watch Will & Grace, although that show hasn't been great for a few years. I will watch The Apprentice though, and ER is usually on in the background. But the other show that I have managed to get into and watch all the time is My Big Fat Obnoxious Boss! It isn't as great as My Big Fat Obnoxious Fiance, but it is still great! I seriously just sit there and laugh! Oh, and I'm definitely enjoying The Biggest Loser and Scrubs on Tuesday nights, but I have unfortunately missed a couple episodes of each! Oh, and NBC is starting to show previews for an upcoming sitcom called Committed, which will premiere on January 4 and looks absolutely hilarious!!
What is up with these pitcher's contracts? Kris Benson signed for 3 years and $22.5 million. Jaret Wright signed a 3 year, $21 million deal with the Yankees. The Yankees appear close to signing Eric Milton to a three year deal around $24 million. Jon Lieber left the Yankees to sign a 3 year, $21 million deal with the Phillies. All of these pitchers are "good" pitchers. But they're not Brad Radke. They're not even Carl Pavano. Is there something going on again that these contracts are so similar?
It was announced yesterday who the highest paid actresses for 2004 were. Julia Roberts, Cameron Diaz, Reese Witherspoon, Nicole Kidman and Drew Barrymore are on top of the list. What I found interesting was some of the per-movie salaries of some of the younger actresses. Kirsten Dunst makes about $8 million per movie. That's fair, she's a great actress. Jessica Alba makes about $2 million per movie and Sarah Michelle Gellar gets about $3 million. What I found incredible is that Lindsey Lohan gets about $7.5 million per movie. That's sad! I realize she's hot and hot right now, but she has done very little compared to Alba and Gellar! Just caught my eye!
I bash Kris Humphries a lot on this site for what the Gophers hoops team was like last year. It was a one man show, that's it. This year's team is actually a team and more fun to watch. He was complaining about his playing time earlier in the season before he was put on the injured list. Well, All-Star, All-Everything Andrei Kirilenko got hurt and Humphries was back on the active roster. Since coming back, he has now played in five games. Here's how he's done.
Date MIN PTS REB AST Opponent
11/30 26 13 4 1 Phoenix
12/1 18 6 5 3 @ Seattle
12/4 18 5 4 0 @ Dallas
12/6 25 8 8 2 Miami
12/8 18 7 4 1 Orlando
Now sure, I could say that he had more assists in those five games than he did all year with the Gophers last year, but I won't! Basically, he is doing a good job off the bench, playing along side Carlos Boozer and Matt Harpring in the Jazz frontcourt.
Last night, the Jazz lost to the Orlando Magic 106-100. It reminds me that I have meant to write about Grant Hill for awhile now. I am so happy that he's been able to come back. And, not just that, but he has played great! Going into last night's game, he was averaging 20.1 points on 50% shooting, with 7.7 rebounds and 6 assists. He's playing right where he left off! Just a great story, and I really hope he can stay healthy because before his ankle injuries, he was a truly great player!
The Magic traded Tracy McGrady to the Rockets this off-season for Steve Francis, Cuttino Mobley and Kelvin Cato. All three of them are starting for the Magic. Francis is averaging almost 21 points, 6.5 rebounds and 6.5 assists. Mobley is averaging 16.6 points a game as well. McGrady and the Rockets have both struggled so far this season. But just as big a story for the Magic is the play of #1 pick Dwight Howard. Howard, who turned 19 yesterday, is starting and averaging 10.5 points, 10.4 rebounds and almost 2 blocked shots a game. That's pretty good! He had another double-double last night with 17 points and 11 rebounds.
Remember when Cuttino Mobley was at Rhode Island? They were one of my favorite teams back when I actually watched a lot of college basketball! Mobley was great! Lamar Odom was the troubled youth who was going to make them great. But, my favorite player on those teams was their point guard Tyson Wheeler! He never did make it!
I was flipping through channels during commercials last night. Have you ever watched the show Scare Tactics on the Sci-Fi Channel? That show is hilarious. They basically just scare people to death and then tell them they're on a hidden camera show and someone set them up. Considering that the show is hosted by Stephen Baldwin (and used to be by Shannon Doherty), it is really a good show!
Anyone surprised that Mike Tyson got arrested yet again last night. Apparently he was jumping on the roof of someone's car and damaged it. He is a smart man, isn't he?
My cable company has like 40 channels. I'm actually happy with the selection. If there was one channel I would like to see added, it would definitely be VH1! When I was home for Thanksgiving, I watched it a lot! They have great shows on there like the Top 40 Bad Rock Videos of all Time, or the Top 30 One-Hit Wonders or Two-Hit Wonders. However, there is a show on there called Motormouth. On it, hidden mini-cameras are installed into people's cars. These people have XM Satellite Radio, and the show chronicles them driving around singing and whatever else they do while driving. Some sing decently. Some are horrid, but just funny to watch. Some, well, you would not want to be driving near them because of their 'dancing' and movements! Then the accomplice gets in the car and pretty much encourages the driver to make a fool out of themselves. Anyway, it's a great, fun show to watch!
I have to again encourage everyone to check out BrentNet, and also take the time to check out his fun-filled forums where there are a lot of great topics! One topic that I found very interesting was a discussion on Great Sports Names. I mentioned the likes of Wonderful Terrific Monds and Hiawatha Terrell Wade and Adewale Ogunleye. You should sign up for his forum and participate. You'll find me commenting all over the place in there!
Brent has done a lot of DVD Reviews on his site. I do a few on here too, but not as well and not as detailed. I just did a recount of how many DVDs I own. As I am typing this, I am watching one of them. It made me kind of think about a question. Are there any DVDs, or movies in general that you tend to watch over and over? I know I do. I am watching Joe Dirt as I'm typing, and I watch that a lot! Over the summer, I bet I watched Van Wilder a dozen times. I watch Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back about once a month. I bet I have watched 8 Mile six times in the last month. I have a lot of VHS tapes too and throw those in from time to time, usually an Adam Sandler movie like Billy Madison, Big Daddy or Mr. Deeds. I've got a bunch of baseball movies, at least the top five or so. I watch Good Will Hunting a lot.
Two 'older' movies that I think are classics and completely underrated are movies that I watch a bunch too! The Jerk was one of Steve Martin's first movies, made in the mid-70s. I can quote most of the movie! The other is Class Act which stars Kid and Play, the late-80s and early 90s rap duo that starred in the House Party movies too. Oh, and Cool Runnings puts a tear in my eye every time!!
The White Sox signed Dustin Hermanson to a two year contract. Does that scare any Twins fans? It doesn't scare me at all. I see him as having the potential to be another Billy Koch!
Well, that is a bunch of thoughts on a bunch of random topics. I really hope you enjoyed it, or at least parts of it! Remember to answer the Discussion Question of the Week! If you have any questions or comments on anything, please e-mail me.
DISCUSSION QUESTION: TWINS ANNOUNCERS
Reprinted from 12/7/04 - I got an interesting e-mail from a guy named "Mike" this weekend and think it is worth posting. I myself am quite curious as to what the answer might be. So, I am going to post it as a new Discussion Question of the Week. We haven't really had one of them for a long time. But what it is is a way of making this site a little more interactive. Here is the process:
I will post a question or multiple questions today.
On Friday, I will post the responses that I receive to the question of the week.
So, you need to take a look at the question, and then send me an e-mail with your response to it, by Thursday night.
The reason I really like doing this is because so many of you come to my webpage and take the time to read my thoughts on a daily basis. What this does is allows you to participate a little bit in the site and to let your thoughts be heard to a bigger audience.
So, let's get to "Mike's" e-mail and questions:
Since XM radio is going to broadcast MLB games this year, I was curious about other team's announcing crew. If you have time, could you address a few of the topics below regarding the Twins announcers?
knowledge of the game
keeping track of the game situation
sense of humor
knowledge of sabremetrics
ability to criticize home team
frequency of cliches?
attitude towards umps (is he highly critical?)
Thanks...I appreciate both your website and any info you can give me,
I guess what Mike, and now I, would like to know is a couple of things. First, please tell us who your team is. Second, since XM radio will likely broadcast the radio broadcasts of the game, who are your team's radio announcers? Third, just to add a little bit to this, who are your television play-by-play and color analysts? And finally, please tell us how they are at announcing using the above criteria or measures? Mike was specifically asking about the Twins, but let's get thoughts on as many teams as we can!
So yes, there are multiple questions and it might even take a couple of minutes to compile a message, but please take the time to do so, especially if you aren't a Twins fan because I am sure that it could create a fun debate when reading how other other announcers call a game. The Twins radio crew includes Herb Carneal (who is a Hall of Famer, a legend, but is getting up there), John Gordon (who is very annoying to listen to and frequently wrong and wayyyyy too easily excitable) and Dan Gladden (who I actually think is the best of the three despite being relatively new to it). On the TV side, Twins fans listen to Dick (I set up Bert) Bremer and Bert (I should be a Hall of Famer, and my birthday is April 6, and you are hereby circled) Blyleven. I am curious as to how Twins fans feel about listening to these announcers too.
So please, take a couple of minutes and respond to this week's Discussion Question of the Week (by Thursday night). E-mail me. Thanks!
If you're looking for a great way to organize your family's Christmas Wish Lists, be sure to go to this site, designed by a good friend of mine.
And as I mentioned yesterday, I got my copy of 2004 Hardball Times Baseball Annual over the weekend! It is far more impressive than I ever would have thought. Great articles, get writing, and very interesting and comprehensive statistics. It is well worth picking up for yourself or as a Christmas gift for family and friends who are baseball fans! By it here.
And on that note, I am going to call it a day! If you have any thoughts, opinions or questions on any topic, please feel free to e-mail me. Have a great Thursday!
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