Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Why Am I So Jacked Up About the NBA Summer League?

This is the question I keep asking myself. I know that as a W's fan, the bulk of the excitement around the  year centers around the lottery selection, the draft, opening day, and Vegas Summer League...mostly because these are when the W's show the most promise and they are all PRIOR to the season starting. 

I know that's a bit harsh but harsh is what we Warriors fans know. While Summer League is usually pretty exciting, I am especially excited about this one. Why is that? Well for starters, we are fielding a team that is perhaps among the best in the field - that's rare. And, we get to see on display probably the only two "untouchables" on the entire W's roster... Stephen Curry and Anthony Randolph; Curry for the first time since being named the next Steve Nash by Nellie (supposedly). 

With the W's very quiet in free agency so far, it is much easier to look toward the future than the present. But AR and SC are pretty darn exciting. Match them with the NBA's leading 3-point shooter in Anthony Morrow along with the previously coveted PG Acie Law, and this team has the makings of an intriguing group. When you add to that some local stars like Stanford's Lawrence Hill and Cal's Jamal Sampson, we've got the makings of some fun local summer sports. 

Can't wait to see how future core of the Warriors in Randolph-Curry and hope that this is not the high point of the W's season...

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Bobby Crosby - How He Stacks Up Against 2004 A.L. ROY Candidates

I was reminded the other day that in 2004, Bobby Crosby was the American League Rookie of the Year. After laughing out loud and then realizing that it was actually true, I thought it would be interesting to see who the runners up were in 2004 and how they are doing now compared to B-Cros. So, I created a little chart below in order of the rookie of the year voting in 2004 and the stats as of today, June 30, 2009:

1. Bobby Crosby, Oakland Athletics (current stats: .197 AVG, 3HR, 19RBI)
2. Shingo Takatsu, Chi. Sox (last pitched in the majors in 2005, currently in AAA for SF Giants)
3. Daniel Cabrera, Baltimore Orioles (current stats: 0-5, 5.85 ERA for the Nationals)
4. Zack Greinke, KC Royals (current stats: 10-3, 1.95 ERA)
5. Alexis Rios, Toronto Blue Jays (current stats: .263 AVG, 9HR, 37RBI)
6. David DeJesus, KC Royals (current stats: .242 AVG, 6HR, 34RBI)
7. Ross Gload, Chi Sox (current stats: .288 AVG, 3HR, 12RBI for Florida)
8. David Bush, Toronto Blue Jays (current stats, 3-4, 5.67 ERA)
9. Nate Robertson, Detroit Tigers (current stats, 1.0, 7.71 ERA - currently on 15-day DL)
10. John Buck, KC Royals (current stats, .226 AVG, 3HR, 19RBI)

So...if I were voting for the Rookie of the Year based on the 2004 top 10 AL candidates, here is how I would re-order them: 
1. Zack Grienke
2. Alexis Rios
3. David DeJesus
4. John Buck
5. David Bush
6. Ross Gload
7. Daniel Cabrera
8. Bobby Crosby
9. Nate Robertson
10. Shingo Takatsu

Among the 5 batters, B-Cros is the only one hitting under .200. As the "heir apparent" to Tejada, I wonder if we've already seen him peak for the A's...

Monday, June 15, 2009

I Could Be In For A Long Summer

While the summer provides so many great opportunities to get outside and do things, it is not usually the most robust time for sports. Besides baseball, which is usually in full stride, we've got the NBA Draft, some pre-season football and not much else. As an A's fan and NOT a Giants fan, I can see the summer looking even more dreary than usual. 

In seasons past even after the A's have traded away some of their better talent, they have still put on the field an exciting team - young, but exciting. This year had promised even greater things with Giambi back, Holliday, young pitchers, etc. 

After this weekend sweep by the Giants, I am officially ready to lower my enthusiasm and interest in the A's. I mean, geez what is going on? Let me do a quick run-down of batting averages and home runs as of June 15 starting with the new additions...

Orlando Cabrera = 2 HR, .232 AVG
Matt Holliday = 8 HR, .274 AVG
Jason Giambi = 8 HR, .207 AVG
Nomar Garciaparra = 2 HR, .255 AVG

The ONLY player on the team batting over .300 is Adam Kennedy, who was claimed off waivers to replace Mark Ellis, who happened to be hitting .206 when he got hurt. Kennedy is batting .313. 

The ONLY player in double figure home runs is Jack Cust, who never hit more than 4 HR in a season prior to joining the A's  three years ago. 

I also want to point out that Bobby Crosby is hitting .194 which isn't even the worst on the team or the second worst. I did not have crazy high expectations for the A's this year, but they are vastly below and are officially worse than the Giants, which is what I always had to hang my hat on. I guess it's NBA Draft or bust now... when does College Football start again?

Friday, June 12, 2009

I Thought I Was A Hockey Fan...

I was just on and saw a promo for game 7 tonight in the NHL finals. I looked at it and surprised myself by saying out loud, "Who cares - it's the Bay Bridge Series tonight." What?

I used to tell people that I was a big hockey fan. If I didn't watch a Shark's game, then I read about it or watched highlights - most often both. And, I kept tabs on what other teams did, especially in the Pacific Division. 

But then the Sharks got eliminated from the playoffs this year and within seconds from the final horn, I was done with hockey for the rest of the season. I have not watched one minute of playoff hockey (except for when I was eating dinner and a friend's house who is a big Penguins fan). But I didn't even find it that interesting or exciting. 

Maybe I am now programmed not to expect my team in the playoffs, like the Warriors, 49ers and A's. But I have loved the NBA playoffs this year; the NFL playoffs are always sweet and baseball is usually interesting enough. I guess perhaps I'm not as much of a hockey fan as I thought. So from now on when asked I will probably have to tweak my responses to, "Oh yeah, I am a die hard Sharks fan. This is their year, man. Stanley Cup or Bust!" I guess this year for me it was bust. 

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

My NBA Draft Matrix

With the NBA Draft only two weeks away (someone please tell me why I have a count-down clock widget on my computer), I thought I would test out my math skills and create a matrix to see which is the best draft starting with 1996. Here's how I set it up - A player who has become a superstar in my opinion is worth 25 points and a legit star (or all-star caliber) is worth 10.

I also highlighted players in red selected by the Warriors (not many) even if they did not remain with the team and players from Arizona (a few more) in blue...Only Gilbert Arenas fits the 'perfect storm' of being from UA and being selected by the W's...congrats Agent 0.

Here are the top 3 drafts in order - I encourage you to challenge me on this and see if you can pick a class that tops 1996...

1. 1996 (150 Points)
2. 2001 (135 Points)
3. 2003 (130 Points)

1996 - 150 Points
1996 Draft Superstars
Allen Iverson (1)
Ray Allen (5)
Kobe Bryant (13)
Steve Nash (15)

1996 Draft All-Stars
Marcus Camby (2)
Stephon Marbury (4)
Peja Stojakovic (14)
Jermaine O'Neal (17)
Ben Wallace (undrafted)

1997 - 70 Points
1997 Draft Superstars
Tim Duncan (1)
Tracy McGrady (9)

1997 Draft Stars
Chauncey Billups (3)
Stephen Jackson (43)

1998 - 105 Points
1998 Draft Superstars (overall)
Vince Carter (5)
Dirk Nowitzki (9)
Paul Pierce (10)

1998 Draft Stars (overall)
Antawn Jamison (4)
Rashard Lewis (32)
Brad Miller (undrafted)

1999 - 105 Points
1999 Draft Superstars
Elton Brand (1)

1999 Draft Stars
Baron Davis (3)
Lamar Odom (4)
Richard Hamilton (7)
Andre Miller (8)
Shawn Marion (9)
Ron Artest (16)
Andrei Kirilenko (24)
Manu Ginobili (57)

2000 - 55 Points
2000 Draft Superstars
Michael Redd (33)

2000 Draft Stars
Kenyon Martin (1)
Hedo Turkoglu (16)
Jamaal Magloire (19)

2001 - 135 Points
2001 Draft Superstars
Pau Gasol (3)
Tony Parker (28)
Gilbert Arenas (31)

2001 Draft Stars
Tyson Chandler (2)
Jason Richardson (5)
Joe Johnson (10)
Richard Jefferson (13)
Zach Randolf (19)
Mehmet Okur (38)

2002 - 95 Points
2002 Draft Superstars
Yao Ming (1)
Amare Stoudamire (9)
Carlos Boozer (35)

2002 Draft Stars
Caron Butler (10)
Tayshaun Prince (23)

2003 - 130 Points
2003 Draft Superstars
LeBron James (1)
Carmelo Anthony (3)
Chris Bosh (4)
Dwyane Wade (5)

2003 Draft Stars
David West (18)
Josh Howard (29)
Mo Williams (47)

2004 - 125 Points
2004 Draft Superstars
Dwight Howard (1)

2004 Draft Stars
Emeka Okafor (2)
Ben Gordon (3)
Devin Harris (5)
Luol Deng (7)
Andre Iguodala (9)
Andris Biedrins (11)
Al Jefferson (15)
Josh Smith (17)
Jameer Nelson (20)
Kevin Martin (26)

2005 - 65 Points
2005 Draft Superstars
Chris Paul (4)

2005 Draft Stars
Deron Williams (3)
Andrew Bynum (10)
Danny Granger (17)
Monta Ellis (40)

2006 - 55 Points
2006 Draft Superstars
Brandon Roy (6)

2006 Draft Stars
LaMarcus Aldridge (2)
Rudy Gay (8)
Rajon Rondo (26)
Too early to tell on any of the next couple drafts...