Saturday, February 12, 2011

Dusty's Decisions May Have Doomed Harang

In the world of sports it doesn't take much for a player in any sport to lose it. Ask Jake Delhomme, Steve Blass, Jim Everett, Chuck Knoblauch, or Steve Sax. They were mental cases to say the least. Some are derailed by a strange coaching decision, like keeping a star player in a blow out game. San Diego Padres pitcher Aaron Harang was doomed by the latter.

When Harang was with the Cincinnati Reds, he says a relief appearance back in 2008 against, how ironic, the Padres, his current team. It was an extra innings game and Harang was summoned in by manager Dusty Baker, he of the weird pitching decisions. Harang pitched well in that game, but in his next outing, a start against the Pirates, he gave up six runs in four innings. You know Baker has ruined a pitcher before so this is nothing new.

Sometimes you need to conserve a pitcher for the long haul instead of using him for an early season extra inning game, especially if that pitcher is a starter that eats up a lot of innings for you. But you know Dusty, he consulted the wristbands and the wristbands told him to put in Harang.

"What it did," Harang said of the relief appearance to the San Diego Union-Tribune, "is fatigue me beyond the point of recovery. I started to change my arm angle to compensate for the fatigue and that’s when my forearm started to bother me. I feel like I’ve never been able to get back to the consistent, repetitive mechanics that I had," he continued. "The last couple of years have been, 'Try this, try that. Move your arm angle out a little.' I’ve had a couple of my old coaches call me, asking, 'What are you doing? You had so much success before doing the same thing. Now, all of a sudden, you’re turning your back on that?' "I got away from my main thing, which is throwing my fastball and throwing everything off that. I got to thinking I’m going to trick people and it just didn’t work."

I know the bottom line in sports in general is wins and losses. Sometimes you have to let one go early for long term success. The short term gain wasn't worth it for the Reds or Harang that season. Now Harang is working to get back to his old self while Dusty gets to possibly ruin Edinson Volquez or Aroldis Chapman.

Brandon Banks Injured In Late Night Stabbing

Washington Redskins return ace and recevier Brandon Banks was injured following a stabbing outside a Washington, D.C. nightclub early this morning according to reports.

They said the stabbing took place around 3a.m. at a club called 'the Park'. No offense to anyone in D.C. but that doesn't sound like a place that I'd like to be that late at night. Police said there ws an argument and a man attacked Banks and a friend he was with. The friend is in serious condition, while Banks was treated and released. The man that attacked them has been arrested and is in custody.

It's a good thing Banks was relatively unharmed and that it didn't turn into a Paul Pierce situation. I'm not going to sit here and preach, but these athletes need to learn that they're not untouchable. Anyone can get to you if they try hard enough.

Rex Ryan Predicts Super Bowl Win For Jets

The NFL offseason has barely started and Rex Ryan has put the pressure on himself and the New York Jets already. Rex and his wife Michelle were taking in a Knicks game last night and Rex predicted a Super Bowl win for the Jets while he expressed his disappointment with the loss in the AFC championship for the second straight year.

"It feeds the competitiveness in you," Ryan said. "You're sick that you missed out again, two years in a row. I know how important it us to this town and our fans, and how important it is to me, this football team. To come up short again, it's a huge blow. "But you do remember. It drives your competitive spirit, like there's no way, no way we don't get it done next year. That's how you feel. That's how I feel. You can't wait to get back and have at it again."

Hey, if you don't have confidence in yourself who will. That's why I like Rex. He has confidence in his team and the team feeds off of it. The Jets had their share of off field stories and the beat goes on with the Mark Sanchez story. But Ryan doesn't see it as a problem.

"Not everybody can play quarterback in this town," Ryan said. "It takes a special person, and Mark can do it. He's proved that he can do it. He's focused and determined. Some guys would wilt under the pressure of New York, of being in the city. But Mark looks forward to it. "You've got to have broad shoulders, he has broad shoulders. I always talk about skin like an armadillo—though I know it's armor, but that's the illustration we make to our guys. He's a great player, a great person, and he can handle this."

Rex has everyone's back on that team and they love him for it. I'm sure he may ruffle a few feathers every now and then but deep down they know short of committing murder or rape, he'll go to bat for them. I'm pretty sure they don't mind him going on record saying they'll win it all. That's what you play the game for and if your not then you shouldn't be playing.


"You've got to have broad shoulders, he has broad shoulders. I always talk about skin like an armadillo—though I know it's armor, but that's the illustration we make to our guys. He's a great player, a great person, and he can handle this."


Clay Matthews Laying The "Smackdown"

Here's some footage of Clay Matthews' appearance on WWE Smackdown.