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Teams I hate

Family Business Paralysis!

Apropos of nothing, here’s a new twist to the continuing Frank and Jamie McCourt divorce saga.

Major League Baseball has moved to seize control of the Dodgers, a famed franchise that fans and much of the baseball world had come to see as crippled by an owner who does not appear to have enough money to operate the team.

A lot of employees will be hurt in this spectacle. And by employees, I do not mean Andre Ethier. The 9-to-5ers for the Dodgers (ticket sales, customer relations, etc., etc.) will have some sleepless nights as this mess gets sorted.

I suppose when ownership is at 50-50, you need to make it work out somehow, or be a selfish ass and screw everyone else, even when you say you care about them out of the other side of your mouth.

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Another $10 million arm, $.10 head

Mike Leake was supposed to be one of the Cincinnati Reds’ top young pitchers, an ace in the making. Strangely, he was shut down in the last month of last year to preserve his fragile rookie arm. Whatever, Leake was expected to come back and take a prominent spot in the rotation.

Leake is 2-0 so far this year for the Reds, but the news out of Cincy makes me wonder what his future will be.

Leake stole six shirts from Macy’s. The value of the shirts was less than $60.00. Leake makes $425,000, which makes him a relative pauper in the Major Leagues, but quite comfortable in this country.

Since the first bonus baby was signed, we’ve heard of pitchers with “Million Dollar Arms and Ten Cent Heads.” They get the tag for different reasons.

Take a look at another pitcher, a right-hander who as far I know is not a felon. Jake Peavy has been on the comeback trail since last year’s gruesome injury. He pitched lights out in spring training and then admitted he felt some shoulder discomfort all along. The White Sox put him on the disabled list and had him continue to rehab in Arizona before sending him on a few rehab stints in the minors.

His first two starts went swimmingly. He pitched well, and he reported no disomfort.

His third start was tonight. Peavy didn’t last 15 pitches. Shoulder discomfort. While I know that Peavy desperately wants to return to the Major League mound, he hasn’t done himself any favors by being less than honest with the Sox trainers. For his sake, I hope his $0.10 head doesn’t devalue his $10 million arm.

Hard to hate

It’s always a battle building up white-hot hatred of the Brewers. Sorry, I reserve that for the St. Louis Cardinals, Houston Astros, New York Mets, et. al.

What you might not know is that I used to love the Brewers, starting in the early 1980s, when I was a little kid getting into baseball and we would get Channel 18 out of Milwaukee, which broadcast the Brewers. I was hooked when they went to the World Series in 1982, losing to the Cardinals, a team I already had no use for.

I went to a few games at County Stadium with my Dad, but by high school, my friends and I figured out that a Brewers game was a pretty cheap date (bleacher tickets $4), so County Stadium was where I spent many summer nights in 1991, 1992, 1993, 1994 and 1995.

Then they joined the National League. I couldn’t give them most favored status. The Cubs still sit in the driver’s seat. But I can’t hate them.

What’s weird is watching these Friday night games. Tonight, the Cubs beat the Brewers 7-4. But look at the Brewers’ laundry:

It’s the 1980s all over again! Sigh.

By the way, why not make these their full-time uniforms? They really are the best unis that franchise has had.

Egg on his face

As I noted yesterday, Matt Painter had little reason to leave Purdue for Missouri. It didn’t really add up. But the St. Louis Post Disptach’s Bernie Miklasz seemed to have the story nailed. Yesterday, things just looked very good for Mizzou. Today, Miklasz wrote that Painter took the job and was going to West Lafayette to say goodbye to his team.

Except he wasn’t. In fact, Painter did consider the Missouri deal, but it just wasn’t enough to lure him away from his home state and his alma mater. Painter signed a contract extension through 2018-19.

There’s a lot to be excited about right now with Purdue basketball. We are moving into our new offices and locker room complex over the next couple of weeks. Our program is built on hard work, and we are ready to get back to improving as a team and a staff. At the end of the day, my heart is at Purdue, and this is a place where I want to win a national championship.


For Miklasz’s part, the crow eating is in progress. Miklasz went so far as to suggest Painter would make an appearance at the Cardinals’ opener at Busch Stadium tomorrow. Sounds like someone gone overboard with some anonymous sources.

Is Bernie red-faced? Well, yeah.

At Lafayette’s Journal and Courier, the sports staff should celebrate. They did enough on-the-record reporting and showed the patience not to report something as fact even when other, larger organizations were reporting it. They trusted their instincts and didn’t rush to be first, only to be right.

Good job.

Painting the town… oh nevermind

Tomorrow will bring dread or relief in West Lafayette, Ind., as Matt Painter will announce his intentions. He will either stay head coach of the men’s basketball team at Purdue or he will accept the same position at the University of Missouri.

Logic says that Painter is simply trying to get leverage for himself and his assistants, and Mizzou is a willing accomplice. If Painter were really on his way out, Cuonzo Martin might not have jumped at the Tennessee opening. After all, as the Lafayette Journal and Courier notes, Martin and Painter share an agent.

Indiana fans remember quite well the dalliance Bob Knight had with New Mexico in the Spring of 1988. Knight reportedly was headed back to Bloomington to say goodbye to his team and to then-AD Ralph Floyd. Only thing was, he stayed, and he remained in Bloomington for 12 more seasons.

But, that was then. This is now. That was Bloomington, Indiana, back when it was on par with Chapel Hill, Durham, Lexington and Westwood as the centers of the basketball universe. Purdue might have a nice program, and West Lafayette might be a nice place to live, but it’s not that many rungs above Mizzou and Columbia.

Add a strained relationship between Painter and his AD, and maybe this makes a little more sense than once thought. I know Purdue is going to give a longing look towards Brad Stevens at Butler (not sure if he’d take the job) and towards Shaka Smart at VCU, but how do you recover from a rising star leaving what he said was his dream job?

Bernie Miklasz says it looks good for Missouri. And while Miklasz is wildly optimistic (he is a bit of a homer, and I don’t know how good his connections are in the college hoops world), some of this makes sense.

Purdue came back today with a sweetened contract that would also bump up the pay of his assistants. Miklasz said Painter was not overly impressed. It’s going to take something to convince him to stay. At least the Purdue students are rallying in support of Painter.

Eleven students? Eh, it’s a start.