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Dunn Dunn Dunn Dunn….Dunn!!!

Hey National fans, Christmas has come early this year because you just signed Adam Dunn!

Now A National

Now A National

Before being traded to Arizona last season, the 29-year-old left-handed free agent outfielder (1B?) had played every game of his career with Cincinnati, after having been drafted by Reds (led by then Cincy GM Jim Bowden) with the 50th overall pick in the 2nd Round on the 1998 MLB Amateur Draft. Dunn debuted with Cincy three years later on July 20, 2001, and over 8 seasons has averaged 29 doubles, 42 HR’s, 96 RBI’s, 114 walks and 118 K’s per 162 games played. Not shabby.  I’m not a huge fan of the whiffing statistic, but the rest I’ll take…. however, some feel differently about Dunn’s arrival. The Washington Times’ Thom Loverro referred to National’s GM Jim Bowden’s policy as “…running a welfare hotel for Cincinnati rejects and refugees.”

Due to a poor track record of signing players for too much/too long, Washington didn’t offer Dunn the BIG the big dollars he was seeking for in the open market. This is proven in the way that he “sat” on the Nationals’ offer for a longer than appropriate period. During this time the Natty’s front office held their ground and remained steadfast. Now Washington has found their seat-seller in Dunn, and you have to give it them for signing him for 2 years at $20 M. The Nationals got the offensive power they were looking for, without breaking the bank. Now they are in a position to deal for whatever else it is they think they need heading into the ’09 season, which many expect will be in the starting rotation or bullpen.

Here’s the kicker, the Nationals don’t lose a draft pick since Arizona traded for Dunn late last season and didn’t offer him arbitration. The signing doesn’t hinder the DC system’s development. The price tag of 2-years and $20 million dollars doesn’t seem outrageous. Even though he has been dubbed a “strikeout machine” you must acknowledge that he knocks himself in for 40 of every 100 RBI’s. He’s an offensive weapon that DC has been missing since Alfonso Soriano left the capital.

Does the recent news in Washington enable the Nationals to become a legit threat in the NL East, or potentially in the Wild Card race? What moves will have to be made with money left in the bank? Will Dunn play first or left? Well…seems we already have the answer to that. Undoubtedly answers will be revealed to us in the upcoming months.

February 11, 2009 Posted by | Major League Baseball | , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

U.S. vs Mexico, it’s gonna get Dirty!

In the road to the World Cup, the United States has a huge qualifier tonight versus rivals Mexico in the CONCACAF bracket. These two teams hate each other and the intensity and flow of the game is usually dirty and fierce. In this type of game, people usually get hacked and it brings out the best in the US team. Tonight in Columbus at 7 pm all the action happens. It’s the first round of the final leg of World Cup qualifying and it’s time to step it up.

78112036BL023_U_S_MNT_V_MEXI hate Mexico for their dirty play and I just can’t stand watching them. They lack the skills of an up and coming US team that really looks to make more of an impact in 2010. Freddy Adu was left off the roster but expect Landon Donovan to pick up the slack. Donovan has struggled in the World Cup but recently has been playing in Germany for Bayern Munich. The Adu snub is due to the lack of action he’s seen in France. Baby Pele is getting upset, personally he’s not too impressive. He’s young but hey hype is much too large for this young little man.

The U.S. has dominated recently gathering an 8-0-2 home record against Mexico since 2000. In this time the U.S. has totaled 17 goals, while the Mexicans have countered with three goals on American soil in this decade.

The U.S. finished 2008 with a 9-3-2 record, including a 7-1-0 record in World Cup qualifying.

Action starts tonight at 7pm ET. Get loud in Columbus…I’ll be watching.

RaginRondo

February 11, 2009 Posted by | Soccer | , , , , | Leave a comment

Final Thoughts From A Favre Fan

 

Thanks
Thanks

I’ll admit right from the beginning that the FlyMaster is a bonafide Brett Favre fan.  It’s not his stats, both the good and the bad, or his exciting and often nerve-racking plays.  For me, Favre played football the way everyone should play games.  He went all out all the time and was always having fun.  Let’s face it, sports are games and games are meant to be fun.  Bottom line.  Nobody puts their 6 year old son in sports in the hopes of him becoming a Hall of Famer.  And for those of you who do that, shame on you.  No, we put our kids in sports so they can learn some values and also so we see them having fun.  Pure unadulterated fun.  As we age many of us lose that inner-child and we then stop playing games.  Brett Favre never let go of that inner-child and played the game like a 6 year old at the highest level. 

Let the pundits debate Favre’s credentials as a top tier quarterback or whether or not his high interception totals tarnish his legacy, or whether the one year in a Jets uniform did him a disservice.  While those curmudgeons argue, I’ll be sitting back revering a guy who played the game the same way I see kids playing in the street.  In fact, Brett Favre has taught me more about my own affinity for still competing and playing hard at the age of 34.  Times are depressing, but give me 30 minutes of a pickup basketball game, 45 minutes of running up a hill with my lungs on fire, or an hour of teaching martial arts and it’s all in perspective.  Play the game to play the game and play it right.  That’s the Favre legacy. 

Favre, unlike so many other major sports icons, possesses an everyman quality.  His wrangler commercials are believable.  His battle against painkiller addiction and his dogged determination to always go to work made him more like us than any other icon from this era.  It’s imagineable to see Favre getting an offseason job just to work for work’s sake.  It’s plausible to walk into an Hattiesburg bar and see Brett at the end of the bar holding court over a pitcher.  Can the same be said of Tom Brady?  What about Tiger Woods?  No way, those guys aren’t like us.  They’re openly better, and that’s okay.  Favre is the uber normal man.  This week we’ve seen some pretty low stories with A-Rod and Phelps, but quietly the “boy-man” Favre left the sports spotlight and I highly doubt there is anybody who can step into his role.

FlyMaster Signing Off…For Now!

February 11, 2009 Posted by | Features & Opinions, NFL | , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

With Favre Gone, Where Do the Jets Go from Here?

Today, it has been reported that Brett Favre has informed the New York Jets that he plans to retire.

Again.

This isn’t shocking.  While Favre had some success in New York, the team tanked in December and blew a shot at the playoffs with a loss against Miami in week 17.

Coupled with that, Favre has been battling against a shoulder injury that may or may not need surgery, while some of his teammates have suggested that Brett’s penchant for throwing interceptions was a significant reason as to why the team finished so cold.

Favre Calls It Quits

Favre Calls It Quits

At least Favre did not drag out his decision. And with a decision now made, the New York Jets can finally move on.

With new head coach Rex Ryan, there are a few options for the team to pursue.

They already have Kellen Clemens, a young quarterback who has seen limited playing time.  He appears to have a big arm, but his potential is completely unknown.

The Jets could also go after a veteran quarterback.  It’s highly unlikely that the Jets would like to give up what’s needed to acquire Matt Cassell.  It’s also highly unlikely that the New England Patriots would want to trade their young quarterback to a division rival.

Jeff Garcia could be available, but Garcia is almost the same age as Favre.  There’s no future in acquiring Garcia, and his style of play is very specific.  Garcia likes to be able to roll outside the pocket–something he wasn’t given as much leeway to do during his unproductive years in Cleveland and Detroit.  Garcia would have to truly fit into a system perfectly, and with a new head coach, it’s hard to know what type of system Rex Ryan prefers on offense.

Jeff Garcia

Jeff Garcia

Then there’s Derek Anderson of Cleveland–an intriguing prospect.  Though Anderson had a disappointing 2008, his 2007 season was off the charts.  He’s only 25 years old, and has a rocket arm.  On the right team, it’s possible he could flourish.  His salary wouldn’t be as high as Matt Cassell, and he could probably be had for a third round pick.  The only sticking point would be that former Jets coach Eric Mangini is now the head man in charge in Cleveland.  Due to the seemingly bad blood between Mangini and the Jets front office, they wouldn’t want to be trade partners with each other.

Other options include Pittsburgh’s Byron Leftwich, Kurt Warner, Kerry Collins, and even Vince Young.

In a year when the quarterback class isn’t as strong–both in free agency and the upcoming NFL Draft, it just might be a seller’s market.

February 11, 2009 Posted by | Features & Opinions, NFL | , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment