Archive for March 7th, 2007


Wednesday, March 7th, 2007

No Ordinary Joe

Mets Rumors & News

In today’s Times, Ben Shpigel profiles rookie side-armer Joe Smith – a dark horse candidate to make the Mets’ bullpen out of Spring Training. The Mets hope that Smith could eventually become the sort of right-handed specialist whose submarine delivery befuddles the opposition a la Chad Bradford. The Times article discusses Smith’s transformation from a mediocre talent with an over-the-top delivery to a pro reliever with devastating sidearm action.

The article also has an accompanying graphic that compares Smith’s delivery to that of Bradford, El Duque, and Mike Mussina, so be sure to check that out as well.

Knicks Could Make Run At Rashard Lewis

Knicks Rumors & News

Via Newsday’s Alan Hahn:

Rashard Lewis called his winning three-pointer “big-time, especially here in New York City at the Garden.” It was his only MSG appearance of the season, but might he find his way to the Knicks in the summer? The 25-year-old forward, who was the subject of trade speculation before the Feb. 22 deadline, can opt out of his contract after this season. The salary cap-restricted Knicks would have to work out a trade in order to land Lewis, who would forfeit $10.1 million next season and $10.9 million in 2008-09 to become a free agent. The midlevel exception, which maxes out at around $5 million a year, certainly won’t cut it. But it’s likely the Knicks will explore something if Lewis is available.

And via Frank Isola in the Daily News:

“I’m a good player, but publicity-wise, I’m not out there as much,” [Lewis] said. “I think being in a big market will help me be out there off the court as well as on the court.”

Where Have You Gone, Channing Frye?

Knicks Rumors & News

A year ago, rookie Channing Frye was the crown jewel of a 2005 Draft that netted Frye, along with Nate Robinson, and David Lee. By most accounts, he was the one player on the Knicks roster with any semblance of trade value, and the closest thing to an “untouchable” that the team had.

So what happened? Frye has regressed in nearly every statistical category this season and has looked lost in general. Today, in the wake of the Knicks’ one-point defeat to Seattle last night, ESPN.com’s John Hollinger defends the game’s superficial goat, Stephon Marbury, and says there is plenty of blame to go around. Hollinger points to Frye as having a particulary inept evening:

What made it so frustrating for the New Yorkers was that the early struggles came as the result of serial mental errors. Foremost on the list was Channing Frye, who passed up multiple open jumpers, made a ridiculous goaltend on a contested Johan Petro fling that seemed to have little chance, and took a …

Jints Jilted Again

Giants Rumors & News

Who knows what’s going on behind the scenes, but at least from the outside, the Giants appear to be in trouble. While GM Jerry Reese got everyone’s attention by cutting several overpaid veterans – most surprisingly LT Luke Petitgout, who yesterday signed with the Bucs – the Giants haven’t exactly exploded onto the free agent scene as many people expected. In fact, the organization seems to be having a lot of trouble simply getting free agents to speak to them.

According to Dan Benton at Giants 101, WR Kevin Curtis was a no-show for his scheduled visit with New York yesterday. Curtis is at least the third player in a week to give the Giants the brush off. Days earlier, Leonard Davis skipped a scheduled meeting with Big Blue in favor of signing with the rival Cowboys, and while the Giants reached out to Travis Henry, Henry showed zero interest, instead signing quickly with the Denver Broncos.

All of this leads Benton to wonder if perhaps Saints …

Belichick Awake, Filled With Terrible Resolve

Jets Rumors & News

If you’re keeping score at home, the New England Patriots are having themselves quite an offseason. Over at thejetsblog.com, Brian Bassett humorously sums up how a lot of Jets fans must be feeling, despite their own recent offseason splash.

“I fear all we have done is to awaken a sleeping giant and fill him with a terrible resolve.”-Admiral Isoroku Yamamoto after attacking Pearl Harbor

I have to admit, I am starting to feel a bit like Admiral Yamamoto now as I hear that after signing [Adalius Thomas], Wes Welker and some role players like our old friend Kyle Brady, now the Patriots are looking at Donte Stallworth and that they have entertained the idea of bringing Randy Moss on board again ( there were rumors at the trade deadline).

Sure the student beat the master last fall, and as elated as I was from watching that great muddy game when the Jets bested the Patriots in Foxboro, I have to wonder if it caused some kind of psychotic break in …

Thomas Jones: In His Own Words

Jets Rumors & News

Over at their official site, the Jets have posted video of a brief interview with newest Jet Thomas Jones, as well as the transcript of the conference call held yesterday with reporters. Jones talks about his excitement at the opportunity to play in New York, and his thoughts on his departure from Chicago. Concerning his role in the Jets offense, Jones refuses to anoint himself the featured back, instead insisting that those things will be proven during practice, and he knows that in the Jets system the best players will play. He comes across as a high-character athlete – as advertised.

Jones Trade Could Prove Costly?

Jets Rumors & News

Not so fast, Jets fans. While the acquisition of Thomas Jones from the Chicago Bears has been nearly universally praised as a steal for Gang Green, Dan Leberfeld of MSG Network cautions that the loss of the 37th pick in the draft could prove more costly than you might think:

While the Jets did need to add a tailback, they also have major needs on defense, and it’s essential they add some big-time 3-4 talent in the first couple of rounds.

Say they pick a defensive end like Nebraska’s Adam Carriker with their first round pick. They could have added a top-shelf outside linebacker at the top of the second round like Purdue’s Anthony Spencer or Georgia’s Quentin Moses. If this trade knocks them out of contention for a dynamic 3-4 pass rushing OLB, that could be a problem.

The Jets can’t get away with the Front Seven they had last year. Their run defense was substandard in 2006. It needs major repairs. They also need to improve their pass rush.

Gang Green could …

Shocking News: John Rocker’s A Cheat

Mets Rumors & News

Via the New York Daily News:

With his career fast fading in 2003, loudmouth pitcher John Rocker of Atlanta Braves and 7-Train fame turned to human growth hormone.

His publicist, responding to an inquiry by the Daily News, said Rocker admitted taking HGH, now prohibited by Major League Baseball, but insisted he needed the controversial substance for medical reasons. His name emerged today in a wide-ranging investigation originating in the Albany County District Attorney’s office into a nationwide prescription drug ring in which more than a dozen people have been indicted….Rocker earned fame as a fearsome closer with the Atlanta Braves in 1999, and became the player Mets fans loved to hate, but he skyrocketed to infamy with a rant in a January 2000 issue of Sports Illustrated on why he hates New York: “Imagine having to take the 7 Train to the ballpark, looking like you’re riding through Beirut next to some kid with purple hair, next to some queer with AIDS, right next to some dude who just …

Kernan: Start Phil Hughes!

Yankees Rumors & News

As you may have heard, Yankees projected 5th starter Kei Igawa was less than impressive in his Spring Training debut. According to the Post’s Kevin Kernan, some scouts he’s spoken to don’t even project Igawa as a full-time starter in the majors – more of a reliever capable of the occasional spot start. But Kernan has the perfect solution: Start Phil Hughes!

Hughes is a mature 20 and ready for the challenge, says Kernan, who cites “some Yankees talent evaluators” that would have liked to have seen Hughes in the majors last season.

The notion would’ve seemed absurd last week as Hughes was coming off a sub-par Spring Training debut himself. However on Tuesday in his second outing of the spring, Hughes posted two scoreless innings, showing poise and patience, according to the Daily News’ Mark Feinsand.

If anything, the conversation shows just how quickly things can change during March baseball. This time next week, we could be discussing whether Igawa has a …

Injuries Keep On Comin’ For Blueshirts

Rangers Rumors & News

Via ESPN.com:

Rangers forward Marcel Hossa could miss a month with a knee injury sustained in Monday night’s 2-1 victory over the New York Islanders.

The 25-year-old left winger sprained the medial collateral ligament in his left knee with about five minutes left in the second period. He limped to the bench but came back on the ice with about one minute remaining in the frame. That was his final shift of the game….The Rangers recalled forward Brandon Dubinsky and defenseman David Liffiton from AHL Hartford on Tuesday.

Hossa was playing his best hockey of his five-season NHL career. He has 10 goals and eight assists in 64 games, but 13 of his points — including eight goals — have been scored in his last 15 contests. Since the All-Star break, Hossa has a team-high eight goals.

Igawa The Next Ishii?

Yankees Rumors & News

It’s never a good thing when you’re removed from a spring training game in the 2nd inning. Via George King in today’s Post:

Kei Igawa is working on the initial season of a five-year pact worth $20 million after the Yankees landed the right to negotiate with him by paying the Hanshin Tigers $26 million.

In his first exhibition outing, Igawa had to be removed in the second inning after giving up two runs, two hits and walking three. He did fan three, but his control wasn’t good. Still, the 27-year-old lefty wasn’t shaken.

“In Japan during spring training this is normally what I do,” Igawa said after the Yankees took a 6-5 win over the Tigers. “It was the same as the intra-squad and the same as Japan, during this time my pitches are usually higher. The results weren’t good, but it’s something to learn about and I will move forward.”

Meanwhile, the Daily News’ John Harper offers that Igawa could turn out to be the second coming of Kaz …

The Golden Child

Mets Rumors & News

WILLIE: REYES LOOKS GOLDEN

New York Post

COSMIC REY

New York Post

Reyes’ Golden age

New York Daily News

SPRING TRAINING: Reyes’ glove skills shining like gold

Newsday

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