Tuesday, June 29, 2010

If You Start Me Up...

Okay, exhale (not you, President Clinton). US Soccer team, what went wrong? I tried to inspire through my emotional, cathartic blog last week but to no avail. It was a good run but we came up a bit short against Ghana. Did our World Cup run change your perception of soccer in the country? Maybe for a short time - but objectivly I do believe that soccer is getting more love in the US now. On the way home from work today the lead story on the sports update was the World Cup. Did we fall short of our expectations? Yes, I think we absolutely should have beaten Ghana. But was this one of the more enjoyable runs a US soccer team has been a part of? Absolutely. I definitely didn't agree with some of Coach Bradley's starting decisions but overall I think he did a good job. That being said, I do think he gets fired (another hot story in the sports section). The US team constantly started slow and that cost the team a spot in the quarter finals. In fact, both Ghana goals were scored within five minutes of the respective halves (well first half and first OT) and I believe all but one of the goals we gave up were within the first 8-10 minutes of the game.

By the way ESPN, can I get another cutaway of President Clinton and Mick Jagger? I'd give a week's salary to be a fly on the wall for that conversation.

So before everyone hits the panic button on the Phils lets take a couple of deep breaths here. Yes, losing 2/4 of our infield hurts. Yes, Chase Utley is our leader. Yes Placido Polanco is third in the NL in hitting this season, but as I said to loyal SFCS-head Derrick Hinmon, I would much rather this happen now than in 4-6 weeks. I think we have enough talent to hang around the race and be poised to make an August push. Mind you, Chase, Polanco, J-Roll, Madson, Happ, Lidge, Ruiz and Durbin all have missed time this year (all but Lidge have missed significant time) and we are still just a few games out of first. We have seven guys currently on the DL. Incredibly Rollins and Polanco have played in a TOTAL of 10 games together this season, and our starting infield has been together for less than that. Eventually we will be healthy - and if we can stay in the race until August, I like our chances to get heatlthy come August and down the stretch.

I expect J-Roll, Howard and Werth to all continue playing well and but the key is going to be Rauuuuul. If he can continue to slowly bring himself back, I think we will be more than fine.

In other news:

  • May 2011 will mark a sad day in American TV. The end of Steve Carrell's run on the office as do-nothing boss Michael Scott. Hard to think of another show that leans on one specific character more than The Office. The good news, it seems to be on syndicate everywhere and all the time.
  • Just saw one of those forwarded powerpoints, that my Mom loves to send and it was the most simple point really stuck with me. "Be ALIVE while you are alive." Love that.
  • Ever say something really foolish to someone, that given the context of your relationship, makes no sense. This happens to me quite a bit. For example, I was speaking on the phone to a customer care "specialist" yesterday about a billing issue. Once my issue was resolved, my closing salutation was, "Thanks again and I'll catch up with you later."
  • Ever notice that when you bang your head on something - like a cabinet or or a overhead freezer door, there's a sudden rush of equal parts pain and anger. It's like I immediately want to turn into fists of fury and no household object is safe.
  • Loved the first episode of Entourage. Typically, the first few episodes are slow, but this was good. The business that Turtle started was a bit confusing and I thought it was going to be part of a dream sequence, but I guess LA needs a scantily clad driving service
  • Someone please tell me why Andy Roddick get so much tennis hype. Outside of his wife, he's done nothing to warrant the credit or praise. He loses big matches frequently and regularly comes up short. Someone asked him if his recent second-round loss at Wimbledon would bother him the next morning? Roddick responded, "Yeah, of course I'm gonna be pissed tomorrow morning." Poor guy. You make millions, you play a sport for a living, you are insanely overrated and you are married to Brooklyn Decker.
  • And the dear G-d please don't let her be our next President (or ever) quote of the day comes from Mrs. Sarah Palin, who talked about one of her hero's Ronald Reagan by telling a crowd in California, "This is Reagan country, and perhaps it was destiny that the man who went to California's Eureka College would become so woven within and interlinked to the Golden State." Only one problem, her hero President Reagan went to Eureka College in Illinois from 1928-1932.
Thank you. You've been a great crowd.

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