Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Tuesday Talkings (+bonus surprise happy fun-time US Open Preview)

-  First off, congrats to Dirk Dirkington and the Mavs on winning the NBA title.  Just as Lord Locksley once told us "Never fear, good will overcome.  Trust in that" and it once again rings true with the evil Heat vanquished by the shining whiteness of Dirk.  Of course, rather than focus on that most of the media is trying to dissect what's wrong with Lebron, but at this point it should be pretty obvious, especially to anybody who spent a lot of time watching the Timberwolves.  Forget Jordan.  Forget Magic, even.  He's basically a more athletic, shorter, Kevin Garnett.  They both have skill sets that are amazing for someone their size, they're both physical freaks, and they're both very intense on the court - for 3 quarters.  Just as KG didn't want to be the man (or maybe simply couldn't be the man) with the game on the line, Lebron is similar, which is why his pairing with Wade generally works (don't forget, they did make the finals, even if they lost).

-  Two quick notes on AL Central pitchers:  First, Justin Verlander is the best pitcher in baseball.  He pitched a complete game 2-hit shutout tonight (7.1 no-hit innings) with 12 Ks and just one walk.  He now leads the majors with a 0.89 WHIP and has struck out 105 Ks while allowing just 73 hits.  105 Ks vs. 73 hits meaning you're 50% more likely to strike out against him than get a hit.  Not to mention just knowing he's going to go out there and throw and give you a solid game is an amazing luxury to have.  He's thrown at least 115 pitches in a game 7 times this year (and never thrown less than 104).  Jered Weaver is the only other pitcher who has done that at least 6 times.  He's just so good.  Best pitcher in the league, and I'm not even sure who else you could make an argument for.

The other AL Central pitcher worth noting is Carlos Carrasco of the Indians.  You may remember him as the dude who shut down the Twins and I'm guessing you figured he was just the latest in a long, long line of shitty pitchers who looked like jesus odin against the crappy Minnesota bats, joining the likes of Kyle Drabek (just sent to AAA), Aaron Laffey (demoted to bullpen), Mark Rcepczynski (also bullpen), Luke Hochevar (plain sucks), Jeff Niemann (either hurt or in AAA, can't find it), and Luke French (back in AAA for the third sraight year) - jesus would you look at that crap?  Anyway, Carrasco followed up his Twink shutdown by doing the same against the Yankees as well.  He might actually be good.  I'm not saying I'm just saying.  Keep your eye on him.  I'm distracted now though because Mrs. W is watching the Voice and Xtina's boobs have gone from sublime to ridiculous.  Of course, it's the kind of ridiculous that is also has some bad that goes with it, but I'd still pay a significant amount of money to motor boat those puppies for a few seconds.

-  Speaking of boobs, I was planning on writing more tonight but I just got a text message and an email from the one, the only, the great Grandslam with his always awesome golf preview, this time for the US Open which is happening this weekend.  So here we go:


2011 U.S. Open Preview

It seems like every year the U.S. Open comes around, we’re discussing how it will be the longest course in U.S. Open History.  This year’s version will be exactly that.  The 111th version of the U.S. Open will be held at Congressional Country Club in Bethesda, MD, and the course will measure at 7,574 yards making it the new U.S. Open record.  This year’s version will look much differently than it did in 1997 when the tournament was last held here.  The most notable change will be to the finishing 18th hole which will once again be a par 4 after experimenting with a par 3 finish in ’97.  

The U.S. Open is flat out the most entertaining golf tournament of the whole year.  Many fans don’t like to watch a tournament where the possible winning score could be over par.  I personally enjoy watching the best players in the world struggle to get their ball in the hole.  It’s entertaining to watch a birdie fest, but watching a golf course that makes players of this caliber look like players at the local municipal is as entertaining as it gets.  USGA executive director Mike Davis has a theory every year when setting up the U.S. Open course, and that is to make it the hardest event these players play in all year.  To go with the length of Congressional, players can expect extremely fast greens, dry, fast fairways, and the longest, thickest rough players will see all year……if Mother Nature cooperates.
Once again the top story leading into a major is Tiger Woods.  However, this year’s story is a little different; the story is his absence from this year’s U.S. Open.  Tiger hasn’t played since The Masters and was expected to make his return this week.  Tiger continues to have problems with his left leg, leading critics to wonder when we will see him again.  I believe Tiger will return to form sooner than later, but from what we’ve seen from him lately, if he was playing this week, would he even be a factor?

Whether Tiger Woods was in the field or not this week, the 111th version of the U.S. Open is wide open to the majority of the field.  With a winning score that I believe will be somewhere around even par (which the USGA is looking for) that brings a lot more players into the mix.  Schwartzel, Kaymer, Oosthuizen, McDowell, Mickelson, Yang, Cink, Glover, Cabrera, and Harrington…….what do these players have in common?  They won’t win the U.S. Open this year.  In the last ten major championships, we’ve had ten different winners.  Maybe we will have a first-time major champion if recent history repeats itself as the last four majors were all first-time winners.  

As for who to look for this week…….Well I don’t have all the answers, but whoever drives it long and accurate this week will almost surely find their name towards the top of the leader board.  As is every year in the U.S. Open, there will be a premium on hitting fairways as the rough will be up to 6” or more in some areas.  As well as accuracy, length will be a key to attacking the longest course in U.S. Open history.  I think it’s safe to say that the odds on favorite is Luke Donald.  He’s #1 in the Fed Ex Cup standings, #1 on both the PGA Tour and European Tour money lists, and oh yeah……the #1 player in the world.  Although Luke Donald has won twice this year (1 on each tour) including the biggest win of his career at the WGC-World Match Play, he will NOT win his first major this week.  Luke Donald has had an outstanding 2011 season thus far, but it could’ve potentially been record breaking.  Donald can’t seem to close tournaments on a consistent basis.  He has lost multiple times in 2011 in playoffs, and just can’t seem to find the consistency down the stretch on Sunday’s.  He’s a top-10 king this year, and that’s exactly where I see him finishing this week.
Alright Ladies and Gentleman, get ready to take these picks straight to Vegas……or at least your office pool.  Since this is my preview, I get to chose two players in each category so I don’t want to hear about it.

Winner:  Steve Stricker, Matt Kuchar
Contender:  Brandt Snedeker, Jonathan Byrd
Sleeper:  Kevin Streelman, Gary Woodland  


And there you have it.  Grandslam says he doesn't have all the answers, but lucky for you I do.  Look to Hunter Mahan, Rory McIlroy, and Steve Stricker (good call here by Slam) as your favorites (along with Phil of course) with possible sleepers Jason Day, Jeff Overton, J.B. Holmes, Robert Allenby, Ben Crane, and and Brian Gay (all 100-1 or worse).  I also really like the Byrd call.  Side note:  Mrs. W is in love with Byrd.  If anybody knows him let him know if he wins the US Open and wants to work out some kid of indecent proposal that he should give me a call.


SSF said...

Hey..does anyone remember when this blog didn't suck and it wasn't so god damn hard to leave a comment? I do.

WWWWWW said...

It's hard to leave a comment? How so?

And this blog has always sucked. Now if you'll excuse me, I'm going to go eat some non free-range chicken with a side of foie gras.

Anonymous said...

I had the foie gras at La Belle Vie last weekend - lights out!

Brett said...

Does non-free range chicken with a side of foie gras actually mean a bag of doritos, a box of ding dongs washed down with a phillips vodka/code red mountain dew cocktail.

WWWWWW said...

You obviously don't pay enough attention to this blog to know how my food tastes run.

Although the drink isn't far off. Generally it's either Svedka or Smirnoff with whatever mixer I have in the house-OJ, Cranberry, Coke, Sprite, and yes, Mountain Dew have all been in play before. The best, however, was vodka with club soda and a couple of squirts of grape snow cone syrup.

most interesting man in the world said...

I don't always drink mixed drinks, but when I do, I prefer tequila and mountain dew!

Loretta8 said...

i hope you put a bet down on rory

John R. said...

How about a live game blog before this winning streak ends for the Twins?? Something! You're like my fourth or fifth check in when I log onto the interweb.


WWWWWW said...

I know, I know. I haven't been posted enough lately. I'm sorry. I used to always post Sunday night, then either Monday or Tuesday, and then Thursday. But now I play softball on Thursdays. I guess I'll have to move that blogging time to Wednesday.

I promise I'll do better.