Athletics should have kept Hudson | NevadaAppeal.com

Athletics should have kept Hudson

Some thoughts for a Saturday morning.

How could the Oakland A’s trade Tim Hudson? What has kept the A’s afloat in recent years is their solid starting pitching, and now they have dealt probably the most consistent starter they have, and didn’t get immediate help in the process.

It’s sad that the A’s have owners who want to do things on the cheap. Few baseball owners make huge amounts of cash unless they reside in a certain big city on the East Coast. The A’s, if they really want to be a perennial World Series contender, need to stop worrying about the bottom line and worry more about giving their fans a team that can compete year in and year out.

I would have preferred the team trade away some of its position players, except third baseman Eric Chavez, instead of a front-line pitcher. Pitching and defense wins championships. High-scoring teams may be fun to watch, but if your pitching staff is giving up five or six runs a game, you won’t be playing baseball in October.

Former Wolf Pack basketball coach Trent Johnson is off to a rough start at Stanford. The Cardinal are 2-4 with narrow wins over USF and Denver. Part of the problem is the Cardinal don’t have a lot of depth, and another issue is that Stanford has spent a lot of time on the road while Maples Pavilion is being refurbished. When you have a young, untested team the last place you want to be is on the road.

And while we’re on the subject of Stanford, what’s up with school officials? They refurbished Maples and made it smaller. What sense does that make? Usually you remodel to add on, not get smaller. Stanford now has approximately 300 less seats. Stanford did the complete opposite of Cal. The Cal athletic department paid to nearly double the size of Harmon Gym, which went from 6,600 to 12,000.

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Kirk Snyder, who left Nevada after his junior season and was drafted in the first round by the Utah Jazz last spring, has had an up-and-down season thus far.

The 6-6 guard had many games where he didn’t see action, but his playing time is starting to pick up. In a recent game against Portland that I watched on television, Snyder scored a career-high 13 points, 11 of which came in the first half when he literally carried the Jazz offensively.

One of Snyder’s scores came when he was driving down the right side of the key, wrapped the ball around his back and dunked it. It brought the crowd and his teammates to their collective feet, though coach Jerry Sloan was probably grimacing when he saw Snyder do that.

This is starting out to be a tough season for the Carson High boys’ basketball team.

After watching the Senators play twice, their inexperience is really showing through. Players don’t seem able to comprehend the offensive sets and where they are supposed to be on the floor defensively which led to some pretty easy baskets by Bear Creek on Thursday. Also, Carson is undersized compared to Douglas and Reno. With that understood, the Senators need to play tougher defense and take advantage of any transition opportunities that present themselves. And, the Senators will be playing without Kevin Brush and Jack Jacquet (broken finger) for at least the next month.

Hopefully coach Bruce Barnes will get things turned around during the Carson tournament which runs Dec. 21-23. Carson opens with Damonte Ranch at 7:30 on Dec. 21. Dayton, the other local team in the tournament, battles Reed at 4:30.

Cary Groth, Nevada’s energetic athletic director, admitted that Nevada may not be able to host a tournament if it can’t start securing at least one top-flight team every year. Coach Mark Fox had to scramble to get fields for both the Jim Thorpe Classic and the Dodge Holiday Classic this year. The latter tournament was supposed to include Stanford, but Johnson backed out after he took the Stanford job.

If you can’t attract a nationally ranked team, maybe UNR officials should look at trying to get teams like Saint Mary’s, UOP, Santa Clara and maybe a Washington State or Oregon State. If you attract West Coast teams, you might be able to put a few more butts in the seats.

If a tournament doesn’t happen, why don’t officials from the WAC talk to Mountain West reps about a WAC-MWC Challenge? I’m sure ESPN or Fox would pick up something like that. You could rotate it between Reno and Las Vegas every year. That might spark some interest.

And while we’re on the subject of Nevada basketball, I hope that people in the community support the conference tournament in March. A good home crowd could give Nevada a good chance to run the table and win the tournament again.

Fresno State said it needed to average between $5,000 and $6,000 each of the five days to break even for the event. Hopefully the bulk of Nevada season ticket-holders will purchase seats and support not only the event but the team.

Darrell Moody is a Nevada Appeal Sports Writer. Contact him at dmoody@nevadaappeal.com or 881-1281.