Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Mailbag V1.0

You know how some writers get a free column every once in a while where instead of coming up with an intriguing angle or shedding light on a hidden subject, they simply answer questions in a mailbag format?

Well, I think you might know where I'm going with this. The only thing is that I didn't exactly have the option of selecting real questions from my readers (both are extremely busy) so I had to go ahead and make them up myself.

Here we go...

Q: Is the American baseball media really this dumb?

A: Over the weekend Roy Halladay stopped the Mets eight game winning streak and improved his own record to 5-1. He has three complete games (including two shutouts), a 39/4 strikeout to walk ratio, and a 1.47 ERA. Anyone who followed the Blue Jays over the last 10 years will tell you these stats are not surprising in the least, especially with Halladay now pitching in the inferior National League, and yet the American baseball media is acting like they're seeing Bigfoot.

Q: What was Chris Bosh thinking with his recent Twitter posts?

A: I could easily say that Bosh is just a technology junky, another of the new generation of famous people who embraces social media and thinks everyone else wants to know where he ate supper last night or how warm it is in Dallas...but that wouldn't be the real answer. Bosh tweeted the two questions about his upcoming free agency as a pre-emptive strike. He basically informed everyone in Toronto that he isn't coming back, and that's fine because Bosh is a 26 year-old power forward who can't score in crunch time and has plateaued as a player (Pts, Reb, Ass, FG% have all been the same since his 3rd year in the league). The guy always starts great and then wears down over the long regular season and ultimately cools off as the games become more important. Bosh is not worth a max contract in Toronto because he will never be the best player on a championship team. Am I excited about a Andrea Bargnani/Hedo Turkoglu led team in 2010-11? No. But this team has won zero playoff series since Bosh arrived. If this franchise is ever going to get to the next level, or even the second round of the playoffs, it won't be Bosh who leads it there.

Q: Which of the two Canadian teams remaining in the NHL playoffs will advance further?

A: This question is actually considerably more difficult than it appears on the surface. The Canucks were a far superior team than the Canadiens during the regular season and have the scoring depth that Montreal can only dream of. However, the West still has all of the best teams remaining making the road forward much more difficult. If Vancouver can get past the Blackhawks (112 regular season points), they'll still have to face either San Jose (113) or Detroit (102 and still not dead even though they're down 3 zip) in a monstrous semi-final. Montreal on the other hand, has the hottest goalie currently playing (although Tuuka Rask may still have something to say about that) and a far easier path to the finals. If the Habs knock out the Pens they won't be the underdog against either of Boston (91) or Philadelphia (88) in the next round and could very possibly end up playing for the Cup. Vancouver was my pre-playoff pick, so I'm sticking with them, but the table has definitely been set in Montreal's favour.

Q: Is it that big of a stretch to assume if you stick your glove in someones face and you get your fingers in their mouth you may get bit?

A: If Daniel Carcillo is the one who allegedly gets bit does anyone really care?

Q: Was Tiger Woods missing the cut last weekend the best thing that could have happened to him?

A: Two weeks ago I suggested Tiger go bad boy and last Friday at Quail Hollow he answered with a tremendously calculated move. What, you thought his game really was that bad? Not a chance. Firing a 7 over 79 was no accident. We're already hearing plenty of "Tiger will never be the same" arguments and reading "Has Tiger lost it?" articles. Just like that, Tiger has put himself in a sympathetic position. Well played Tiger.

Q: Are the Blue Jays actually better than we gave them credit for?

In a word: No. At 15-13 on the season, the Jays current record is absolutely better than expected...and it's because they're playing above their heads. Toronto has had what feels like more 9th inning comebacks and two out RBI's in the first five weeks than they've had in the last five years and other than Aaron Hill, they've been pretty much injury free. The Jays are 8-3 on the road, which means they should go about 25-45 away from the 'Dome the rest of the way.


  1. TOTD comment: In the previous series, what a heartbreaking loss by the Rangers against Windsor in the OHL! Now Windsor is off to the Cup. Should have been Kitchener.

  2. Barrie would've beat Kitchener in the final.

  3. Montreal looked awful last night and they're lucky to be in this series. If Pittsburgh can find some momentum and Halak finally succumbs to some of the pressure he's never experienced before, the rest of the series will go quickly. Bye bye Habs.

  4. If Staal returns tonight and is the same player, then it could be lights out. However, Montreal has shown they can come from behind in a series, and Halak is absolutely capable of stealing a game or two...so as much as it pains me to say it, Montreal is not done yet.