Greetings loyal subjects and welcome to the Monday Night Monologue. There’s a lot to get to tonight so I’m just gonna get right to it.
There’s been a lot of pissing and moaning about the fact that the Oregon Ducks jumped over Boise State in the latest AP college football Top-25 poll after Saturday’s 52-31 win over then-9th ranked Stanford.
Boise State won 59-0 over New Mexico State, but they might as well have been playing the New Mexico School of the Blind. Oregon leapfrogged the Broncos because they actually played a worthy opponent.
Thanks to pollspeak.com, I looked at the votes to see who in their right mind would give Boise State a first-place vote. Apparently, Pete DiPrimio of the Fort Wayne News-Sentinel believes that the Broncos are the No. 1 team in the land, with Oregon at No. 3.
I would expect something like that from the Boise sports writer, but Indiana? This guy needs to have his vote taken away immediately.
Moving on…time for some NFL one-liners.
Josh Scobee’s stork-like leg single-handedly put the Colts in a lot of trouble.
LaDainian Tomlinson found the fountain of youth. Now if he could just give some to Brett Favre.
The Steelers managed a 3-1 start without Big Ben, time to go on a 12-game winning streak.
New Orleans barely beat an abysmal Carolina team…at home. The post-Super Bowl letdown is in full effect.
Brett Favre managed to avoid throwing an interception this week.
Tony Romo managed to stay out of the news…watch out Tennessee.
I told you the Bears were using smoke and mirrors. Jay Cutler was on his back more than Paris Hilton. My wife, a big Cutler-hater, says “I wouldn’t trust him to throw me a party.” I love you honey.
The Seahawks beat the Chargers and then lost 20-3 to the Rams???!!! I told you they got lucky against San Diego.
Week 5 is a HORRIBLE week for NFL games. The most intriguing game is Green Bay and Washington….yikes.
At the beginning of the MLB season, I made my annual predictions. I was updating you each week on the status of my predictions. Here are the final tallies categorized by how far off I was. The +/- indicates how many games I was off.
Holy crap I got it right! (+/- 0-4)
Atlanta: 91-71 (92-70, -1)
Arizona: 65-97 (67-95, -2)
Philadelphia: 97-65 (99-63, -2)
Minnesota: 94-68 (91-71, +3)
Kansas City: 67-95 (70-92, -3)
Milwaukee: 77-85 (80-82, -3)
Florida: 80-82 (83-79, -3)
Close, but close only counts in horseshoes and hand grenades (+/- 5-9)
San Francisco: 92-70 (87-75, +5)
New York (NL): 79-83 (72-90, +7)
St. Louis: 86-76 (93-69, -7)
Detroit: 81-81 (73-89, +8)
Tampa Bay: 96-66 (87-75, +9)
Cleveland: 69-93 (60-102, +9)
Cincinnati: 91-71 (82-80, +9)
Just….a bit outside (+/- 10-14)
Houston: 76-86 (66-96, +10)
Oakland: 81-81 (70-92, +11)
Colorado: 83-79 (94-68, -11)
Los Angeles (NL): 80-82 (91-71, -11)
Los Angeles (AL): 80-82 (92-70, -12)
New York (AL): 95-67 (108-54, -13)
Pittsburgh: 57-105 (70-92, -13)
Boston: 89-73 (103-59, -14)
Washington: 69-93 (55-107, +14)
Chicago: 75-87 (89-73, -14)
Not even close (+/- 15-19)
San Diego: 90-72 (75-87, +15)
Baltimore: 66-96 (82-80, -16)
Chicago: 88-74 (71-91, +17)
Texas: 90-72 (72-90, +18)
WHAT THE HELL WAS I THINKING? (+/- 20+)
Toronto: 85-77 (64-98, +21) - They caught a lot of people off guard this year.
Seattle: 61-101 (87-75, -26) - Some people picked the Mariners to win the World Series this year. I didn’t even have them making the playoffs but this was ridiculous.
How the award picks turned out.
AL Cy Young: Felix Hernandez (34 GS, 13-12, 2.27, 232 K, 6CG, 1 SHO) - He led the league in ERA, was 2nd in the league in strikeouts (Jered Weaver had 233 but unlike Felix, Weaver’s manager let him make his final start). Felix has a lot of support from many writers. I think he ends up getting it despite the 13-12 record.
Who will win: Felix Hernandez would’ve gone 27-4 with the Yankees run support. The team scored 13 runs in his 12 losses. They scored 18 runs while he was on the mound in his nine no-decisions. C.C. Sabathia may have won 21 games but his 3.18 ERA is almost an entire run higher than that of Felix’s. King Felix should win.
NL Cy Young: Roy Halladay (33 GS, 21-10, 2.44, 219 K, 9 CG, 4 SHO)- Halladay had a rough patch mid-season, but so did the Phillies. He and St. Louis’ Adam Wainwright were the league’s only 20-game winners. Halladay was 3rd in ERA behind Florida’s Josh Johnson (2.30) and Wainwright (2.42). Halladay was 2nd in strikeouts behind Tim Lincecum (231).
Who will win: Wainwirght and Halladay will split votes due to their similar seasons. The edge may go to Halladay because the Phillies are in the playoffs and the Cardinals are not. Colorado’s Ubaldo Jimenez could sneak in there too. But I think Halladay gets it.
AL MVP: Joe Mauer (.327, 9 HR, 75 RBI) - Mauer finished 3rd in the league in batting average despite playing in only 136 games this season. His power numbers were down from last year (28 HR last year) but he was still a valuable component to the AL Central champ Twins. But he’s not gonna win this year.
Who will win: Jose Bautista will get some votes for his year (54 HR, 121 RBI) but his .260 average and the fact that the Blue Jays finished 4th in their division will hurt him. Josh Hamilton (.359, 32 HR, 100 RBI) led the league in batting average and led the Rangers to their first AL West title since 1999. He will win.
NL MVP: Albert Pujols (.312, 42 HR, 118 RBI)- Pujols had another banner year. His average was down a bit from previous years but it was still good enough for 5th in the NL while leading the Senior Circuit in both homers and RBI.
Who will win: While I won’t argue if the writers give it to Pujols, I feel the real winner is Cincinnati’s Joey Votto. Votto (.324, 37 HR, 113 RBI) finished 2nd in the league in average, 3rd in homers and 3rd in RBI while leading the Reds to their first postseason since 1995. I think Votto will get it but I won’t be surprised either way.
AL ROY: Brian Matusz (32 GS, 10-12, 4.30, 143 K) - A lot like Hernandez, Matusz suffered because of the fact that he played for such a dismal team. But, he finished strong, winning his last six decisions. He led the Orioles in strikeouts and looks like he’ll be ace material in a few years.
Who will win: The Rangers Neftali Feliz (4-3, 2.73) burst onto the scene and was a key part in the Rangers AL West title. Feliz converted 40 of his 43 save opportunities and held opponents to a .176 average.
NL ROY: Jason Heyward (.277, 18 HR, 72 RBI) - Full disclaimer: Heyward gets my vote because I’m a huge Braves fan. But look at the numbers, he earned it. Unfortunately, this a crowded field of really good rookies who all deserve it.
Who will win: San Francisco’s Buster Posey has similar power numbers as Heyward (18 HR, 67 RBI) but had a higher average (.305). Florida’s Gaby Sanchez had a lower average (.273) but led the rookie class in RBI (85). Fellow Marlin Mike Stanton led the rookies in HR (22) but had a .259 average.
On the mound, the Cardinals’ Jaime Garcia went 13-8 with a 2.70 ERA. Atlanta’s Jonny Venters had 24 holds and 93 strikeouts with a 1.95 ERA in 79 appearances. The Reds’ Mike Leake and the Nationals’ Stephen Strasberg had their seasons shut down early and that should eliminate them from consideration. I still vote for Heyward, but I think Posey gets it.
That’s all for this week. Thanks for reading.