Tuesday, July 18, 2006

GAPB #8: The Herbie Post!

Another all-sports entry today. Also, my 53rd post on this board, a.k.a. the Herbie Post. Ah, the Love Bug. Dean Jones may be America's finest actor....or not.

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You know what’s underrated? Being a major league pitcher. These guys are able to toss a small spherical object at speeds of as much as 100 mph with pinpoint control into a zone that is only a few square feet large. Keep in mind that the throwing motion is in itself contrary to the natural motion of the shoulder, so with every single toss (even a soft toss game of catch you play in the backyard), you’re doing something you shouldn’t be doing with your shoulder. And these guys do it dozens of times per week for years upon years.

I really had no point to the previous paragraph. I’m just really impressed by pitchers. I think throwing a baseball is the most impressive thing in pro sports. I’m not being paid by, say, Justin Speier, to say this.

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Hey, the Maple Leafs are acquiring defensemen and grit! Hey, all of them suck! Hey, they’re overpaying Bryan McCabe by at least $2 million! Sure, he was the best Toronto defenceman last year, but that’s like saying you’re the best-looking kid in the fat camp. Players like Mike Peca and Gary Roberts (when he eventually signs) are a good step, but the Leafs are still missing on a key ingredient to any hockey team: TALENT. The Canes and Lightning had loads of gritty veterans like Glen Wesley, Brind’Amour and Andreychuk for their Cup runs, but they were really powered by young stars like Staal, Ward, Richards, Lecavalier and St. Louis. The one bright side of the team this year will be that with Maurice in charge, we’ll get to see if younger players are actually good, since they’ll finally get a chance to play. It’s a nice change from Pat Quinn’s apparent belief that you’re only a good NHL player if you’ve already played in the league for 10 years.

Sigh. The Leafs never fail to discourage me. I seriously think it will be a Red Sox/White Sox or (dare I say it) even a Cubs-esque drought before a Cup parade goes down Yonge Street. I guarantee it doesn’t happen without a change in ownership.

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Also, somewhat related to the Leafs, I’m not a fan of when people play the “my team has more championships” card when discussing favourite teams. When I get into a debate about, say, the Leafs and the Habs, the Montrealer too often falls back on the “Hey, 24 Cups” argument like it’s a denouement as gripping as a Johnnie Cochrane closing statement. Using championships to say why you like a team is like saying that Jurassic Park is your favourite movie, and when someone asks why, you respond with “Hey, $200+ million gross worldwide.”

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