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New Football Thread - For the Limey contingent, Vince Lombardi is demonstrating above how real...

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New Football Thread - For the Limey contingent, Vince Lombardi is demonstrating above how real football is played. Lotsa talk in the press about the race for 4th. Who do you think has the best schedule "run-in" to finish the season? TOT - CITY - POOL - VILLA Remember - City and Tottenham will play each other in Manc toward the end of the season - just not on the sked yet.

Tony Bernazard article

Tony Bernazard is long gone as a Mets' executive, rather famously fired last summer for bad behavior, but the legend of his notorious influence on all phases of the organization continues to grow. . It turns out that Bernazard even dictated the extreme opposite-field hitting philosophy the Mets adopted last season, which may have contributed to their stunningly low home run total. ---------------- What gets me is how such a stupid idea was able to grow and fester in a supposedly class A pro environment. baffling

Riley Cooper Chooses Football

"Cooper said Monday afternoon that he had told the Texas Rangers, who had drafted him in the 25th round of the 2009 draft, that he was not going to play baseball and instead wanted to continue his football career in the NFL. Cooper had to give back his signing bonus, which Baseball America reported was $250,000." [H/T to Ming at the NMLR board.]

Projected line-up by OPS+

The link above is to a Posnanski blog post about the Royals' projected line-up for 2010. It got me curious to see the Rangers' projected lineup by OPS+ for comparison's sake. Based on the 2009 OPS+ at Baseball-reference.com [ballpark adjusted] ... Borbon - 105 Kinsler - 107 Young - 128 Hammy - 90 Nellie - 117 Lowell - 106 Davis - 85 Salty/Tea - 70/65 Elvis - 82 Murphy - 101 Inglett - 87 Gentry - 2 Atkins - 66 Kevin Richardson - 166 Kevin Richardson's wife - 10 So, surely Borbon's gonna come back down to earth a tad, but you'd hope Kinsler, Hammy, Davis and at least one of the catchers improves their act come 2010. Also, you can kinda see where JD's comin' from wanting Lowell to DH some this coming season. If not him, who?

Kevin Millwood chat at Inside Corner

I hadn't seen this mentioned anywhere and I thought there were some interesting HSO's from Milly ... On Maddux - Mike's approach is not that different from other pitching coaches. I just think he does a better than job of relaying the message. It's pretty simple stuff: Throw strikes, get ahead in the count and stay on the attack. Tempo plays a big part of it. It keeps everybody ready. Shows the other team that you've got a lot of confidence out there. I think offenses have had a lot of confidences playing against us in the past and I think that's starting to change. On Holland - I think Derek has a chance to be very special. I think he has all the tools that you need. Now, it just comes down to applying it and learning how to pitch to big leaguers. He really wants to learn. He wants to get better. And that's the only way you are going to get better. And believe me, there have been plenty of guys with talent who just didn't care. I think he really knows his place as a rookie right now. He doesn't act like the proverbial "10 year veteran." He just goes about his business the right way. On Harrison and BMac - Well, we've already touched on Holland, but as for Harrison and McCarthy - don't forget Harry is only 23 - he may have the best stuff on the team. I think he's got a chance to be very, very good. I think his presence on the mound right now is really, really good. He's got a lot of confidence working and he's getting everybody out. Brandon is going to get better and better the longer he stays healthy. That's been the biggest obstacle for him. He's a very smart young pitcher. Knows what he's doing and why he wants to do it. He finally gained some weight and that will be important. On Salty and Tea - To me, it really doesn't matter. And it shouldn't matter. I call my own game. The thing that helps is when we are on the same page early in the game. Salty is a lot better player this year than he was last year. I think it's because he's played a full year and he's worked his tail off. He's got a great ethic. He does everything he can to be mentally and physically prepared. When I pitch, we talk a couple of times before the game and he talks a lot with Mike and [bullpen coach] Andy Hawkins. He's constantly asking folks about how are we going to go after this guy or that? On the improved defense - I think any time your confident in your defense, you are going to pitch better and you are going to be more willing to throw more strikes and not worry about letting guys hit the ball. You aren't trying to strike everybody out; you are just trying to keep it off the sweet spot. On who would win an arm-wrestling match between him and Padzilla - I would kill him. I'm bigger, stronger and I'm smarter. What else do you need? On Andrus - I think he's a really hard worker and he's got crazy range. He gets to a lot of balls that off the bat you would typically say, "that's a hit," and let it go. He gets to them and then he throws guys out. He's been better to this point than I thought he would be. On the upcoming Angels series - I think you can expect a great series. It's going to be close games with a lot of excitement. And how good is it to be talking about important series in the middle of May? Everybody likes that. Thanks everybody. I really enjoyed being able to chat. Sorry we couldn't talk longer. But having your support and your interest means an awful lot to everyone in the clubhouse.

Get Fuzzy

Check out the Jan 23rd episode - nice jab at Sox fanz by Meno's avatar.

FanPost

John Manuel discusses the Rangers

This long read is worth every second of your time.  LINK  But that's really when push is going to come to shove for Texas. They just have to start turning this talent into Major League wins....

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