Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Strousburg, Verlander and Some Football Stuff! by Denny McLain

By Denny McLain


STROUSBURG
If Strousburg of the Washington Nationals is healthy why isn’t he pitching after the 12th of September? This is just “NUTS!”

Washington Senator Manager Davey Johnson stated Sunday the Phenom Strousburg will be done after his next turn. Can you imagine? Here they are in the middle of a run for the World Series an opportunity that every major leaguer plays for, a World Series Title. Do you mean that the geniuses in Washington now know that he can’t pitch more than 160 innings or so. What happened to last year? You mean that they are so smart now that they can predict when a guy is going to get hurt? Why didn’t they see it coming last year?

Folks, you never see it coming, it takes one pitch, one bad wind-up, one bad anything, but who the hell can predict that someone is going to get hurt? If I am a fan in Washington, I want my money back if they sit this phenom down for the rest of the year, by the way, if they are afraid of him getting hurt, why pitch him at all? Maybe next year, 5 innings huh? Just from seeing him from afar, how good can he be if he stays healthy? But they must let him pitch and let’s see if he can pitch in the 7th, 8th and 9 innings. Pitching in the late innings is a different game than pitching in the first six, I guarantee you that fact.

VERLANDER
First our Tigers will win our division, no question, with am exception or two all we really play is Cleveland, K.C. and Minnesota. While Verlander has had some inconsistency issues Scherzer has stepped up big time and as well as Delmon Young, both have been super strong with timely pitching and Young’s hitting has been exceptional.

And to think that every broadcaster I believe in this town was ready to ride him out of town under a truck for his actions earlier in the year, thank God NO ONE wanted him huh? It’s a good thing too, cause the pitching in our league has caught up with Avila as well as a couple others, but Scherzer and Young have made up for those who have not produced. I would not be surprised to see the Tigers trade for a solid catcher over the winter.

Every pitcher gets his brains beat out once in a while. Now, Justin has had some issues lately, like getting his brains beaten out, much like the All-Star game and maybe he won’t win many awards this year, but he is still more formidable and effective than just about anyone, still one of the top five in the American League.

What confuses me at this time is the number of curveballs that he is throwing, usually that is a sign of one of three things; the pitcher is tired, he has a sore arm or he has lost something on his fast ball.

By throwing more curveballs you can protect your arm a little better in the short term by short-arming the pitch, and not having to extend fully your arm, if he is losing a little on his fast ball that is one thing, but it appears to me that his movement on his fastball is a little less than in previous years and his control does not appear to be as sharp as the previous years.

By the way, has Max Scherzer finally found himself? We all know that Max has always had the stuff to be a winner and a good solid winner and his last five or six performances have been way above the inconsistent performances that we have witnessed by Max. Fifteen wins now and I can tell you that is the best thing that can happen for Verlander too.

Competition within your own team is always healthy, I know, Lolich and I went at it for years, both of us wanted to be #1, so it made the two of us better and better.

CABRERA
There was a lot made of Cabrera not running out a ground ball last week and the ground ball turned into a double play because Cabrera took it for granted that it was a routine double play, which of course Cabrera does often. But Andy Dirks slid into a second baseman, upset the timing of the double play and if Cabrera had been running, he would have sure and easily beat the throw to first.

I suspect that any other player would have gotten pure hell and I suppose Jim did say something but the lesson is simple, YOU must run out every ball that you hit anywhere in the park, do I have to remind everyone what made Pete Rose the player he was, they did not call him Charlie Hustle for nothing.

The easiest thing that any major league player can do every time he hits the ball in play is run to first base as fast as one can. If he is hurt, sit him down for a couple days because you better be ready for the last week of the season because this race has got a great chance of being really intense the last week. And you sure don’t want Cabrera sitting on his cheeks the last week because you didn’t let him rest and heal now; rest him now “if” he’s hurt.

Lastly, Leeland needs to change the line-up just a tad, place Fielder ahead of Cabrera in the lineup and I promise you that Fielder will hit 30 points higher and that would get our lineup going big time. I think that if Jim would make that move, our Tigers would coast into the playoffs.

STEROIDS
Hey, steroids are back. I was told last year late in the season by a Tiger player that the “Super Steroids” are back in the game again.

Cabrera with the Dodgers has been suspended for at least 50 games, Colon with Oakland and at least five or six other guys this year suspended for steroids and it’s going to get bigger.

Victor Conti, the (alleged) Guru of Steroids and his (alleged) magical ability to hide steroids as he stated in a recent interview that they are all over the league again and how do you doubt the Guru with the number of guys being suspended. And baseball is going out of its way to avoid even testing.

For example, baseball is supposed to mandate at least 600+ steroid tests of players during the winter months, last year they only tested 300 players. That’s called avoiding the truth of the matters isn’t it? I’m only concerned with the message that it sends to our kids, if the big leaguers do it, the kids will follow suit quickly, especially if they find out how to hide the steroid use. Shame on baseball for not enforcing the rules and only giving lip service and a few suspensions and fewer tests than ever before.

ROGER CLEMENS
What the hell is going on with Roger? It appears that Roger is trying to not be included in the current Hall of Fame vote. He has been out of the game now five years and is eligible for the Hall on this next vote but if he plays one day in the big leagues that moves back the possible entry date. Number one, I don’t think that he has a chance to get into the Hall, between his lying and throwing his wife and trainer under the bus, I don’t think the voters have short term memory losses.

He pitched three plus innings against barely a college team, without giving up any runs, but the only point can be the Hall of Fame, what possible other reason could there be at this point? I know that we all know that we need some kind of competition in our lives, but a 50 year old guy trying to compete with 20 year olds won’t last long, I promise. I can’t imagine the pain Clemens must have felt the day after he pitched those three innings. Oh my God, I can feel the pain!

LIONS
My prediction for the Lions like everyone else I guess is 10-6, maybe the playoffs. If the Bears can keep their Gun-Slinger Cutler healthy, I think they will be 11-5 and finish behind the Packers. The Pack still has too much for anyone in our division.

Stafford must stay healthy, God forbid if he gets hurt, what then? Calvin Johnson may be the greatest receiver of all time if he stays healthy, God knows he has more tools than anyone that I have ever seen in the NFL with the exception of Barry Sanders who’s pound by pound or inch by inch (as far as I am concerned) the finest and best football player to ever play in the NFL Had he played another two or three years he would have set records that no one would have ever touched.

MICHIGAN & MICHIGAN STATE
I was not impressed by either team in their openers for the same reasons that we all saw, not much creativity with MSU and not much of anything with U of M.

I was really disappointed in the way MSU played a team that was not very good, blame the first game jitters, whatever, but man, no creativity at all.

Then we have U of M, man we knew that Alabama would probably win, but folks, I heard on our local radio that our Quarterback Denard was not responsible for the loss, in fact this alleged broadcaster stated that it was Denard by himself against 11 on the other team.

Man, our broadcasters need to count the players, stop kissing the ass of our teams and at least be honest. We were outplayed, out hustled, out manned, outscored certainly and anything else that you can think of! This game really showed the class of the SEC and our Big Ten is far from where we would like it to be and I don’t have any problem with saying that Alabama is going to get better and if they are this good now, watch out because I think we saw the other night, the best college team in the nation. I think that they proved that last year too huh? Despite all of this obvious talent in Alabama we are still going to play the schedules and see what happens.

Cause you never ever know what is going to happen, do we?

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