13) Toronto Raptors fired coach Dwane Casey Friday. Really, they did.
Last three years, Raptors went 166-80 in regular season; they were the #1-seed in the East this season, but Casey was 21-30 in playoff game, and that cost him his job.
The problem for the Raptors’ owners is this: Who do you replace that will maintain Toronto’s regular season success, but also do better in the playoffs? Won’t be easy.
I guess my point is this; all change isn’t positive. Winning 55 games a year in the regular season has to sell a lot of season tickets.
12) Then there are the San Diego Padres, who have a terrible team every year; how does GM AJ Preller (he is also the executive VP) keep his job? Dwane Casey gets fired, Preller keeps his job. Go figure.
This is Preller’s 4th full year running the Padres; their record during that time is 227-299. San Diego hasn’t finished within 16 games of first place in NL West since 2010.
11) Not only are the Padres terrible, but Preller has been nailed twice by MLB for cheating; when Preller ran international scouting operations for the Rangers, Major League Baseball suspended him for a month, for improper contact with a prospect.
In 2016, Preller was suspended 30 days without pay over improprieties related to the Padres’ trade of pitcher Drew Pomeranz to the Red Sox- he withheld medical information that he was required to give to the other teams.
So a two-time cheater who runs a terrible team (but hey, their farm teams are great!!!) has a contract that runs thru 2022. He went to Cornell, he must be smarter than everyone else.
No wonder some teams always suck.
10) Mets played their 36th game of the year Friday; Devin Mesoraco is already the fifth catcher they’ve used this season.
9) Before Friday night’s game, Astros were hitting .227 at home, .289 on the road.
8) Rangers 1, Astros 0— Houston has now been shut out in three of its last four home games. Texas (+$220) winning was 10th-biggest upset in the major leagues so far this season.
7) Remember Alan Alda, the great actor who played Hawkeye Pierce on MASH? Turns out he was a high school classmate of wrestling star Captain Lou Albano at Archbishop Stepinac HS in White Plains, NY.
6) How much do college commencement speakers get paid? Oprah Winfrey was the speaker at USC’s commencement this week; that had to be a pretty hefty tab.
Winfrey’s website says her speaking fee is $200,000; she must speak really well.
5) Chargers’ head coach Anthony Lynn is 49 years old; he’s getting his college degree Saturday, 30 years after he started college. Good for him.
4) Tilman Fertitta owns the Golden Nugget casino in Las Vegas and bought the Houston Rockets for $2.2 billion in September- he is really rich.
Because casinos aren’t allowed to take bets on teams owned by their owner, if you bet on Golden State to win the NBA’s Western Conference at the Golden Nugget, you’ve already won, since you couldn’t bet on the Rockets in that casino.
3) Mariners’ manager Scott Servais is off this weekend; his daughter is graduating from Ole Miss this weekend. Bench coach Manny Acta will manage Seattle, with Ichiro Suzuki serving as bench coach for the two games Servais is missing.
2) Blue Jays 5, Red Sox 3 (12)— Luke Maile homered to tie the game in the 7th inning, then won it with a walk-off homer in the 12th. Those are his only two home runs this season.
1) Reds 6, Dodgers 2— Matt Harvey got the start for Cincinnati; he blanked the Dodgers for four innings, allowing one hit. He got only two misses on 23 LA swings, but Reds have to be pretty darned happy with his performance.
As for the Dodgers, they’re in a deep funk.