“Gentlemen, start your engines! Because it’s wide open in the AL Central! It feels like these teams are still defining themselves.”
Buster Olney, ESPN baseball analyst, 810 AM
GH: With the Detroit Tigers returning to the rest of the AL after a dismal past 30 days, the AL Central is either loaded with mediocrity or the most competitive division in MLB. Here we are in mid-June and every team is within at least four games. It might not be great baseball but it beats the hell out of the lousy, out-of-it-by-July baseball we have become far too familiar with here in Kansas City. Let’s have some fun this summer barking at Rex on the tube, bitching about Ned’s grumpiness and wondering if Billy and Moose are ever going to wake up and carry this team toward their lofty expectations. In other words, let’s not be Royal, Kansas City!
“I’d be lying to you to tell you it doesn’t mean anything to get over .500, because it does. It’s a big thing.”
Ned Yost, on the Royals going 7-3 in their last ten games to move their record to 33-32 and within 2.5 games of the Tigers, 610 AM
GH: Being one game over .500 in mid-June shouldn’t excite any fan base – unless you are the Royals fan base. And doggone it, we could use some summer excitement here in Clown Town. What a week on the road this is for our Blue Boys – three in Chicago and then four monsters in Detroit. Play ball!
“The backend of their bullpen is a complete mess.”
Buster Olney, on his assessment of the Detroit Tigers bullpen issues, ESPN baseball analyst, 810 AM
GH: How about the backend of the Royals bullpen? Wade Davis as the Royals setup guy has been magnificent. Everything I thought he was not. He’s been so good he has people whispering about trading Greg Holland – who has been ever better than Davis as the Royals lights-out closer. If I am any of the other teams in the ALC, the presence of these two weapons in KC’s pen has to have them concerned about the Royals staying in this race through September.
“I am a big believer in Dale Sveum can relate to hitters because he did step into a major-league batter’s box. He’s a very solid baseball man and he has a very solid approach to hitting.”
Mike McFarlane, when asked if he thought the Royals new hitting coach was making a difference in the team’s success since he replaced Pedro Grifol, 810 AM
GH: McFarlane has been kind about his critique of Grifol but it appears evident he is not a fan of hitting coaches who have not played in the bigs. I am of the opinion that hitting coaches at the MLB level are little more than shrinks and scapegoats.
“Boxing is fixed, we know that. Soccer is exactly the same as boxing!”
Kevin Kietzman, after a blown call against Croatia gave home-team Brazil a game winning penalty kick in the opening round of the World Cup, 810 AM
GH: And with those two sentences, KK pretty much bombed The Border Patrol’s weekly Friday programing schedule of topics. BTW, I would suggest Kietzman listen to his segment Thursday where he, Danny Clinkscale and TJ Carpenter debated the sport of soccer. It highlighted one of BTL’s major flaws. KK was confident, aggressive and clear with his opinions on how to fix soccer – just what you’d expect from a station owner and the boss. Clink and TJ sounded cautious, fearful and afraid to be completely honest with their opinions – just what you’d expect from two guys in radio arguing with their boss/owner on the air. It is never a fair fight on KK’s show. In other words KK’s show is fixed.
“The World Cup is a about a month event, but the three days the that USA plays, I tell vendors, staff, customers, ‘Hey, it’s going to be a Big 12 Tournament atmosphere down here (at Power & Light).”
Kyle Witherspoon, general manager at Johnny’s Tavern on Grand Blvd, Kansas City Star
GH: The P&L is expecting 12,000 thirsty folks to roll into downtown on Monday, just about the time all those office building empty at 5:00 PM. I am old. I will not be there. I wish I was young. I would be there with a very large smile on my face.
“We have a nice, comfortable place to watch the (World Cup) games. It’s a great alternative (to the P&L). We’ve had rock ‘n’ Roll concerts, I think we can handle soccer fans.”
Emily Behrman, general manager of the Performing Arts Series at Yardley Hall at Johnson County Community College, Kansas City Star
GH: I do not know Emily but I would venture to say that Emily does not know soccer fans like she think she knows them. Rock ‘n’ Roll’s got nuttin’ on Besler Fever.
“Jim Donnan just told us he thinks Missouri will be ‘the sleeper’ in the SEC this fall.”
Paul Finebaum, @finebaum, Twitter
GH: Sleeper? The defending SEC East champs are a SLEEPER? Perhaps it is the rest of the SEC that is asleep about Maty Mauk and his Tigers.
“This is one of the toughest challenges I’ve ever been through.”
Mario Chalmers, discussing his poor play as Miami’s point guard during the NBA championship series against San Antonio, Kansas City Star
GH: It is PAINFUL to watch Chalmers getting torched by Tony Parker and doing zip when the Heat have the ball. It is tough to watch a guy go from NCAA hero to NBA goat right there on my television set. The Heat will need a historic comeback to remove the stench that will now follow Mario’s career.
“The Jordan Rules are this; if he gets inside the paint, hit him. Make him make it from the foul line. LeBron is probably a better dribbler than MJ and he’s damn sure a better passer to his teammates! With LeBron, you’ve just got to put somebody in front of him and hope he shoots jump shots.” J
ohn Salley, who won three straight NBA titles with the Bad Boys Detroit Pistons, ESPN Radio
“I don’t know Rashad McCants. To say coach (Roy) Williams knew (of the alleged UNC academic fraud) and tried to sneak his way through it (college) would go against everything I’ve known about him in 20 plus years.”
Ryan Robertson, former KU guard, on the former UNC All-American’s damning accusations that he says Coach Roy knew of and helped orchestrate, Journal-World
GH: I am not the biggest Coach Roy fan, mostly because I thought he grew too big for his britches while at Kansas. But I cannot imagine he has changed that much to do what McCants accuses him of doing. If so, there may be nothing or no one college athletics cannot corrupt.
“The Summer Sadness brackets…
The Drive, 610 AM
GH: Danny Parkins and Carrington Harrison have launched their Summer Sadness bracket Kansas City edition – and it made for some great radio Thursday afternoon. While KK verbally abused Clink and TJ with his soccer takes, the youngsters down the dial described their creative summer distraction for KC sports fans with a sense of humor. They seeded 32 of the most heart-wrenching local sporting memories and asked their listeners to pick an overall “winner” over the next month or so. The filed has four regions – Chiefs, Royals, Mizzou and Sunflower (including both KU and KSU). The number one seeds in each region are: Chiefs – Lin Elliott, Royals – 1994 Strike, Mizzou – Tyus Edney, Sunflower – KSU’s 1998 Big 12 title loss to A&M. The Drive’s listeners will pick a winner each afternoon during the 4:00 hour. I see some sleepers in this bracket that could surprise. But my money is on Lin Elliott once again coming out on the bottom. Click here to view the bracket and the Facebook page here.
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