Saturday, May 3, 2008

News y Notes

Rodney Williams and Royce White: Yes, I'm lumping them together. It's their fault for being so similar and for playing on the same AAU team. Anyway, the Howard Pulley team travelled to Kansas this weekend for a tournament, and here's a couple of reviews from two different Scout writers on both of them from Friday night's game:

Rodney Williams, SG, Howard Pulley – Indiana Elite quickly found out what Williams does best -- dunk the ball. The 6-foot-4 wing attacked the basket and threw down dunk after dunk. To go with his incredible hops, Williams showed improvement on his jumper by knocking down a handful of three pointers. He went for 27 points in a close win over Indy Elite.

Rodney Williams - Those who have seen him play before have thrown out the theory that the springy 6-6 wing from the Minneapolis area is the top run and jump athlete in the class of 2009, those who saw him in action Friday night won’t disagree. After signing a few pre-game autographs, the slender wing came out and hit a deep three before beginning his assault on the rims. He dunked off the drive, he dunked in peoples faces and he dunked in transition. When he wasn’t dunking, he sported a much improved handle and more aggressive attitude which is a great sign.

Royce White, PF, Howard Pulley – His AAU coach said it wasn’t his best game, however we were still impressed with what White was able to get done against Indy Elite’s big men. The 6-foot-7 forward faced up defenders, knocked down threes and attacked the basket. He was aggressive the entire contest and put up 19 points.

Royce White - Fresh off of his commitment to Minnesota, White was scoring in bunches Friday night. Armed with a good jumper that he’s very capable of hitting off the bounce, he’s a 6-7 combo forward who frustrates bigger guys with his ability to score off the dribble while taking smaller guys inside to dunk on them. Brimming with confidence, he’s playing terrific ball right now and teamed with Rodney Williams to carry Howard Pulley past a tough Indiana Elite One squad.

Damn, these two are sounding better and better. Hopefully Royce can use his influence to get Rodney to sign on with the U as well. Oh, wait. I forgot Rodney had some academic issues last year. We don't want kids like that at our school. Guess we should forget it. I hear there's some white kid with a 4.0 who averages 8 points per game available though. Hopefully we can beat out Northwestern for him.

Verdell Jones: More on the recruiting front, Verdell Jones cancelled a scheduled visit to the U of Arizona this weekend, despite receiving a scholarship offer from them following the departure of Jerryd Bayless. Standing in the way is incoming freshman Brandon Jennings, the number one PG recruit in the country, and if his play in the McDonald's game was any indication, a hell of a player. Jones is expected to announce his decision Monday, and according to Scout, Minnesota is "the prohibitive favorite." Sounds good. Bring him aboard.

Delmon Young: As if in response to my post yesterday about how much he sucks, Delmon went ahead and 2-5 to show me how good he is. Not so fast. His hits were a seeing eye groundball between third and short and another ground ball back up the middle that the Detroit pitcher couldn't handle. Yes, two more groundballs. His outs? Two more groundouts and a strikeout. Four balls put into play, four balls on the ground. Pay attention to this next time you watch a Twins game. It's crazy. Speaking of the Twins, we were linked by, the best Twins blog on the interweb. If you haven't checked it out, do so now.

Francisco Liriano: Liriano made his first start down in Rochester on Wednesday, and it's not good. Not good at all. He only went 4 and 1/3, giving up four earned runs to go along with five hits and a red-light flashing five walks. According to the radio, he threw 94 total pitches, just 51 for strikes. He's basically lost not only a lot of his velocity and pitch movement, but now his command of the strike zone. I'm afraid his confidence is shot and at this point he's afraid to throw strikes, thanks in large part to him being rushed back to the majors way to early. In this article at they have some quotes from Liriano which make it clear that he is happy to be back in AAA, and I'm not sure how I feel about that. Even worse was this quote from Francisco, "I don't know what I'm doing." Yikes. I'm still holding out hope he can make it back to at least be a serviceable starter. To say I'm concerned right now would be putting it mildly.

Johan Santana: Wondering how Johan is faring over in the NL. I'll admit, I haven't been paying as much attention as I thought I would, even though he is on the Sidler and I's fantasy team. He's just 3-2, which, to the crowd that evaluates pitchers based on wins and losses isn't that great, but some of his other stats are looking very strong, including a 3.12 ERA and a 0.92 WHIP. He's still struggling with the long ball, sitting at 1.56 HR/9 this season, the worst of his career. He's been able to have such a low WHIP due to a really low BB/9 of 1.79 - which would be the second lowest of his career - and a low OAVG of .203. I'm guessing he'll fade a bit based on the lowest K-rate of his career (8.7 per 9) and an absurdly low .227 BABIP (batting average balls in play) which will likely go up. Although he's getting 47% of the balls hit against him on the ground, versus a career total of 38%, so maybe he's just turned over a new leaf. In any case, he's awesome and I miss him so much it hurts sometimes.

Kyle Lohse: Speaking of former Twins who are dominating the NL, how about this guy with the Cardinals? In six starts he's 3-0 with a 2.36 ERA and a 1.16 WHIP. Other than his low strikeout rate, everything else looks good. Can he keep it up? I doubt it, but just looking at the stats, it's scarily possible.

Dylan Hale: Lastly, I wanted to mention this guy. A commentor mentioned him in a couple of different posts, and I hadn't heard of him, so I figured I'd look him up. He plays for St Paul Central, and Rivals doesn't even have him in their database while Scout has him as a 1-star SG, with no other info. They don't even have his height and weight listed. Looking at Maxpreps, he is 6-2, and averged 17 points, 4.5 rebounds, 3 assists, and 2 steals per game last season as a junior, which included a 39 point outburst against Arlington, whatever that is. On the season he shot 60% from the floor, including 57% from three. Since he's not really on the recruiting radar right now, there isn't a whole lot of info on him, but what I can find makes it clear he's a big-time shooter with great range. I have no idea if he's D-I material or not, but I'll be watching for his name.


Anonymous said...

quick note; RWJR and RW and the rest of their pulley panthers will be battling an instate rival MN magic Elite in the elite eight at the jayhawk invitational.

Magic is lead by carlos emory, and SLP's own s.jensen; they beat CA pump N run (top 5 in the nation)sat night behind 24 from jensen.

looking to watch some fun HS basketball this weekend around town? SLP will be playing Tartan and (marc sonnnen) in the semi finals of their MBA spring tournament at Spring Lake Park (9am), and the winner will face the loaded Henry Sibley team (Mike Brusewitz and Chris Halvorson) are both playing this weekend with SIbley. 11am

Nick Faldo said...

In case you missed it, Anthony Kim won his first PGA tour even this weekend at the Wachovia. I doubt there are 3 other people that frequent this blog, who actually know who this kid is but he won a pretty good tournament and it is important for 3 reasons.

1. He is an American under the age of 25.
2. Critics have said that he has talent but can't finish.
3. He is cocky, very young and extremely talented.

I think it was Nantz who told the story of how Kim was on the range one day and Tiger made a derogatory remark to Kim about his belt buckle (Kim wears a big buckle with his initials A.K.) and Kim said Nike doesn’t make these...Yet. He has been characterized as a brash, young player that needs to mature. Well he got help somewhere because he played great and doesn't mouth off as much as he did last two years, being cocky but not letting the media get a hold of anything Tiger can use for bulletin board material is good. This kid will be someone to watch and hopefully can push the envelope of American talent trying to make a run at Tiger. Plus he got 1.1M and some financial advisors blue sport coat for the win. All in all a good event to watch and Kim made it better by having a hot putter and the confidence to win. Sorry if this gets in the way of the idle hoops and baseball chit chat but it was a good weekend for the PGA. TPC this week, maybe gayslam can give us his thoughts. He should be feeling refreshed after his 3-4 week hiatus but since Tiger is out I am sure he has no idea who to pick as a winner.

Dawg said...

Snacks - Rumor has it that Bogart aka Daddy Fat Pockets blew his load in gambling again this weekend. My source tells me that he was pissing benjamins down his leg at an alarming rate.

snacks said...

He must have been listening to WWWW again. He should know better.

WWWWWW said...

It was about time for Kim to win. Last year he was on fire for a while but couldn't quite finish it off. He sucked to start this year, but turned it around. I'm guessing he'll suck this week coming off his first win hangover, but he's certainly one to watch.

And hopefully gayslam will be back.

Snake said...

Eat it Grand Slam! The Big "not so Brown" Bear just putted his balls into your clown mouth.

Bear, one bit of advice. Please add a bunch of charts and statistics to all future posts so the fun can be sucked out of Golf as wells as baseball!

Bear said...


Bear said...

V. Jones to IU. You heard it here first.

The Todd said...

Dammit Bear, you are quick. I just saw that on Stib's site. F the Hoosiers.

Snake said...

V. Jones must not like dumpy arenas!