Here are some random things I've taken note of recently. Without trying to provide more introduction than necessary, let's get right into it.
* Colorado is going to award it's football players iPods. I guess they found some of the money ex-coach Gary Barnett didn't get receipts for after all. I love just how ridiculous big time college athletics can be.
* I will rarely say anything nice about most people in the entertainment industry. In fact, you may notice a dearth of information about them on this blog in general, nice or not. However, I was saddened to hear about the death of John Spencer of The West Wing. I enjoyed his work.
* I still cannot believe the Boston Bruins traded Joe Thornton.
* Candles have become very popular in recent years. I know lots of people, ok, women, who love them. Therein lies my problem. I have gotten candles as Christmas gifts the last few years. Now, I understand these candles are coming from those who don't know me very well, again, women, but I'm a forty something male who watches endless hours of sports. I studied history in college. Does that sound like someone who covets candles?
Yes, I'm married, but Mrs. B.B. isn't into the candle craze, either. Sure, candles are great when the power goes out and my flashlight batteries go belly-up, but aroma laden candles? Thank you. Really. Thank you. But, please stop.
* Michael Andretti is returning to Indy Car racing presumably to attempt to win the Indianapolis 500 which has eluded him. I'm not sure whether to wish him luck or wonder if he needs mental help.
* All Detroit Pistons fans, really all basketball fans, should start cramming the NBA All-Star ballot boxes (virtual or not) with the names of the Pistons starting five. You can only vote once every twenty-four hours, but get out there and vote for the best starting five in the league--Ben Wallace, Tayshaun Prince, Rasheed Wallace, Chauncey Billups and Rip Hamilton.
* If you can't legitimately vote for all five, at least give Billups and Hamilton your vote. Yes, Allen Iverson and Dwyane Wade are spectacular, but better?
* We hear so much about customer service these days, but am I the only one who thinks for all the talk customer service is far worse than it has ever been?
* Let me see if I got this straight. The Treasury Department stopped Cuba from competing in the upcoming World Baseball Classic? First, Al Capone, now Fiedel Castro. The spirit of Elliot Ness is alive and well.
* On a slightly more serious note, the U.S. government should relent and allow Cuba to play. We played a bunch of communist countries for years in the Olympics and have all kinds of trade deals with communist China, let Castro's boys come up and play a little of our national pastime.
* After losing Johnny Damon to hated rival New York, something tells me that the Red Sox off-season is just beginning. Here is my guess as to what the Sox will do to counter the Yanks and their depleted lineup. First, they spend the winter convincing Roger Clemens to do a farewell tour in his original uniform. The Sox peddle a starter (Matt Clement is my guess) to Seattle in a deal that brings them centerfielder Jeremy Reed. The Sox will move David Wells for some bullpen help or middle infielder. They sign free agent shortstop Alex Gonzalez. Boston will probably look for a lefthanded bat for firstbase as well.
* Did you see where the Chicago Cubs might be offering Mark Prior to Baltimore in a package for Miguel Tejada? The Cubs situation is one that scares me as a Tigers fan. Not that long ago, the Cubs had the young starting rotation in the game--Kerry Wood, Mark Prior and Carlos Zambrano. Now, Wood may be a closer due to ongoing arm problems. Prior, once the most coveted prospect in the game, has battled arm problems each year and is tradeable. Zambrano is now the ace of the staff.
It doesn't take much for young pitchers to fall. That's why you need so many to succeed--because so many never live up to expectations. That's why betting the farm on Jeremy Bonderman, Justin Verlander and Joel Zumaya is a risky proposition. The odds are two of three will never come close to what you believe they will be. There needs to be more quality arms in the system ready to go, if they fail. (Please, don't fail, boys.)
* That's another reason why I had hoped the Tigers would have added another solid veteran arm for 2006. You can't get too much pitching. If nothing else, you can always trade some later, as the demand always exceeds the supply.
* Oh, no. Not the Twins. Anyone else worried about how badly Rondell White is going to beat on the Tigers in '06?
Hey, you made it all the way through the entire post. Congratulations. Sorry, no prizes are available, but I thank you for stopping by and actually reading this. Have a happy holiday.