Friday, June 29, 2018

Sports this 'n' that

Tonight, the Albany Empire are in a position where they can run the table and win the Arena Football League's regular season title. All they need do is beat Washington for the fourth time this season, this time on the road, setting up a showdown with first-place Philadelphia (The Soul & The Empire are owned by the same ownership group) at Times Union Center July 7. Luckily, the Empire do have a radio deal to go along with most of their games being broadcast on CBS Sports Network, so fans won't miss much, although with the Empire on the road, sports junkies will be gravitating to Bruno Stadium.......
The Tri-City Valleycats' hold on 1st place in the Stedler Division of the NY-Penn League is tenuous at best after losing to Hudson Valley, 3-1, on Thursday. The Renegades have the best record in the league at 10-2. The 'Cats, however, played without pitcher Chad Donato (3-0, 0.00 ERA) and Houston's 1st round draft pick, Seth Beer, who were promoted to Davenport, Iowa, earlier Thursday. so a period of transition has already begun. Expect more 'Cats to move up the ladder, as is an annual tradition, before the end of the season.
Mets GM Sandy Alderson has taken a leave of absence from the team to address some health issues. Former GM Omar Minaya will aid assistant GM's John Ricco & J. P. Riccardi in running the team, but it seems ownership is resigned to the prospect that Alderson will not return this season or beyond. The Mets could certainly use some stability at the top, though disgruntled fans are begging the Wilpon family to sell the team. Good luck with that.

One thing I don't like hearing are rumors of top players such as pitchers Jacob deGrom, Noah Syndergaard, & Jeurys Familia on the trading block. Sure, Familia has struggled this season, such that 1st year manager Mickey Calloway moved him out of the closer's role, opting, apparently, for closer by committee, and Familia was tagged with the loss after failing to record an out Wednesday vs. Pittsburgh, but that speaks more to Calloway and pitching coach Dave (Long) Eiland's general unfamiliarity with the Mets' pitching staff, making unnecessary tweaks where they don't belong. If this keeps up, Calloway will likely be leaving for the nearest golf course come October, one & done.
Congratulations to the Oregon State Beavers of the Pac-12 Conference, this year's College World Series champions. The Beavers, down 1-0 in games vs. Arkansas (SEC), came back to win the next two games, wrapping up the title on Thursday night.

The NCAA & ESPN did the smart thing by scheduling each game for a 7 pm (ET) start, something Major League Baseball should consider for the World Series. A 7:30 start is fine, as long as the pre-game is kept to a bare minimum, like, 10 minutes. Otherwise, the glacial pace of post-season games at the MLB level will keep the kiddo's away, forcing parents to DVR the games......
Happened to see in the transactions section of the sports page that former Met Gonzalez German, who had a cup of coffee in Flushing a few years back, has resurfaced with the Long Island Ducks, an independent team. If this doesn't work, his career's definitely over, although some players do use the indies as a way station toward getting back to The Show.

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