Here's hoping everyone got through the Fourth of July with life and limb, while, at the same time, remembering the liberty that was forged 238 years ago. The Fourth should be more than just a long weekend and blowing off illegal fireworks, independence is something none of us should ever take for granted.
Baseball in July---
I'm not usually one for 'I told you so', but I was one of those guys who thought the Royals should have chased Nelson Cruz in free agency. I know the former Ranger would have been a hard sell after a 50 game suspension for his part in the Biogenesis scandal, but, at $8M for a year he came relatively cheap and his 26 homers and 70 RBI lead the Major Leagues.
Those totals would be incredible in the Royals lineup and when you consider that they've struggled more than any team in MLB in one run games-how many wins do you suppose he could have delivered so far this year? Even if KC was only 4 games better in one run games, at 13-12, they'd still be tied for the lead in the American League Central and that doesn't even count other games the Royals might have won with a few more runs.
The A's become the clear favorite in the American League with their pickups of pitchers Jeff Samardzija and Jason Hammel from the Cubs. Chicago gets three top prospects, including each of the A's last two first round picks and a player to be named later, Oakland gets two pieces which, arguably, give them the best staff in American League. Remember, The A's made this move as the team with the best record in baseball-talk about not resting on one's laurels.
After I asked the question, 'has Wimbledon lost its relevance'? I got a really good theory from a caller on Sports Daily. His contention is that the sports viewers have so many more choices now, that they never develop the competitive itch that needs to be scratched. I thought it was the fact that for the first time in 103 years an American wasn't in either of the quarterfinal fields or that the personalities in the game have become vanilla and non-descript. But, the listener was right-I can remember being glued to the set watching McEnroe-Connors on the Fourth of July and it would be the only sports I'd see all day
Sock it to them---
Overland Park's Jack Sock won the last of his four Kansas State High School State titles in 2011, three years later he's already a two-time major winner-well, kind of. He added a Wimbledon men's doubles championship this weekend to go along with mixed doubles championship from the US Open. He's currently ranked 77th in the world, the sixth highest amongst American players. Pretty cool.
Pick a better name---
I'm all good with the self-aggrandizing that goes along with the one-name handle. Madonna is better as Madonna than her given name of Madonna Louise Ciccone. Bono is Bono, Pele and the list goes on, but someone needs to help out Brazilian star-Kaka. It doesn't exactly evoke the image of one of the world's greatest players, but it certainly does evoke an image.