Some thoughts for the weekend
Appeal Sports Writer
Just a few thoughts for an overcast winter afternoon.
* I admit I had to laugh when I read a recent Associated Press story about the PGA pros complaining about the recent conditions they had to play in the Mercedes event on the Plantation course in Kapalua, Hawai’i.
I’m a horrible golfer and I’ve played the Plantation course. In fact, I’ve played all three of the Kapalua courses. It is indeed a challenge for any golfer of any ability. The tradewinds can be a bear to deal with, but again, you are talking about pro golfers, all of whom can make the golf ball do some pretty amazing things. I can’t imagine the weather being any worse than what pros have had to endure at Pebble Beach.
Come on guys, do you want every course to play like the courses in Palm Springs where there is barely any rough and you shoot 30-under par? Be men. Your on the PGA for crying out loud. It’s OK to shoot a 75 or 76 guys. The public will still like you. The only thing taking a hit is your ego, and those are probably too big as it is.
You should want the challenge. That’s what sports is all about – the challenge. If everything was too easy, more people would turn pro. I admire athletes that always want to compete against the best, and I have little respect for athletes who want to be a big fish in a small pond. Test yourself people. You will be better for it in the end.
* You’ve got to love guys like Baker Krukow, who figures to be Nevada’s starting catcher or designated hitter this season.
Krukow hit .280 and drove in 28 runs last year. He’s one of those guys who dosn’t care where he plays; a good clubhouse guy. He just wants to help the team, and that’s something that is really missing in athletes today.
“As long as I play, I don’t care where he (coach Gary Powers) puts me, and I told him that,” Krukow said Thursday after the Pack’s first practice of the season.
Catcher and DH are the logical spots, though Krukow played a little first base during fall ball. The Pack pitchers are happy to have Krukow back because they like the way he calls a game. Krukow is the only returning Pack catcher.
Krukow said this year’s Pack team may have a different personality. Brett Hayes, Ben Mummy and Jacob Butler who used their talents to make Nevada one of the most feared offenses in the conference a year ago, are gone. Butler used up his eligibility, while Hayes and Mummy signed pro contracts.
* I was happy to see Bruce Sutter finally get into the baseball Hall of Fame. Sutter may not have the saves, ERA and wins of some of the other premier relievers, but he was a workhorse. It wasn’t uncommon to see Sutter pitch two and sometimes three innings to get a save, a far cry from the guys of today, who rarely work more than one inning a game. Sutter once worked more than 100 innings in a season. When is the last time you saw a closer do that?
* My car radio always is tuned to ESPN Radio. It fills a void from when I left the Bay Area. I was a devoted KNBR 680 listener, and loved the rantings of Ralph Barbieri and Tom Tolbert. I loved the in-depth coverage the station gave to pro teams, ecpecially the Giants.
A few nights ago, there was a discussion about what era of the NBA was better – the LeBron James Era or the Larry Bird Era. I respect some of today’s superstars, but there was nothing bigger than Magic, Larry Bird and Michal Jordan.
* It was interesting to see Bode Miller, America’s top alpine hope in the upcoming Winter Olympics next month in Italy, apologize after a recent national interview where he talked about skiing drunk among other things.
There is a time and place for everything, and a month before the Olympics was not the time for Miller to start spouting off. I was happy to see the coach question in print whether Miller should be allowed to remain with the U.S. ski team.
No doubt the possibility of megabucks in endorsement money is probably what turned Miller around and caused him to apologize. Olympic heroes/gold medalists are always worth some nice cash.
Contact Darrell Moody at email@example.com, or by calling (775) 881-1281