13) When you’re a college basketball coach trying to win, you do all kinds of stuff to get players:
Oklahoma State hired the older brother of top prospect Cade Cunningham as its new assistant coach; this is perfectly legit, has been done many times, usually with a father- that is how Kansas got Danny Manning back in the 80’s, they hired his father as an assistant. Ed Manning played in the NBA, but was a truck driver when Kansas hired him.
Cannen Cunningham played at SMU from 2011-15 and spent last season at Tulane as the associate director of video operations under Mike Dunleavy Sr.
12) What happens if the Cunningham kid goes somewhere other than Oklahoma State? Does Oklahoma State tell the brother to take a hike? Chances are strong the kid is going to OSU.
11) The last few weeks, I’ve heard five different Bronx baseball fans refer to DJ LeMahieu as “this kid LeMahieu” as if they had never heard of him before this year. Oy.
LeMahieu will be 31 on July 13; this is his ninth year in the major leagues, he has 1,125 hits and a career on-base %age of .353. Two All-Star games, three Golden Gloves; he’s been a really good player for several years, but since a lot of the Bronx fanbase just follows their own team and not the whole sport, they just don’t know.
10) Blake Snell’s last three starts for Tampa Bay:
7 IP, 18 hits, 17 runs (16 earned), 9 walks, 7 strikeouts.
When you’re using an opener 60% of the time, you need your two aces to give the bullpen lot of rest and that isn’t happening for the Rays right now.
9) Kerry Blackshear transfers from Virginia Tech to Florida, big pickup for the Gators- some pundits have now put Florida in the preseason top 10 for college hoop.
8) Middle of the night a few nights ago, Moneyball appeared on TV, which was fine with me; hadn’t seen it in a while. I won’t embarrass myself by telling you how many times I’ve seen it, but couple of thoughts popped up in my head while watching it this time:
— Bill James should be in the Hall of Fame, as a contributor; he certainly changed the game.
— There must be some great discussions/arguments behind the scenes now, with the old school baseball guys taking on the numbers guys, as far as strategy goes.
7) Baseball stuff:
— Bronx put Giancarlo Stanton (knee) back on the IL.
— Detroit recalled 3B Jeimer Candelario from AAA.
— Angels recalled P’s Jaime Barria, Trevor Cahill
— Twins’ OF Eddie Rosario (hamstring) left Wednesday’s game early
6) Kevin Durant declined his $31.5M player option and will be an unrestricted free agent; will be interesting to see what kind of contract a 31-year old guy (he turns 31 in September) with a torn achilles gets. History tells us achilles injuries aren’t kind to basketball players.
5) New York City is made up of five boroughs; Manhattan, Brooklyn, Bronx, Staten Island and Queens- the borough of Queens, by itself, has more people than 16 states.
4) I’ll say this once and only once: I don’t give a rat’s ass who wins the MVP in any league, ever, in any sport. Some days, it is all ESPN talks about. Individual awards? They. do. not. matter.
3) White Sox 8, Red Sox 7— Jose Abreu homered in the ninth inning for the win.
2) San Diego 10, Baltimore 5— Orioles have allowed 165 home runs n 80 games; not good.
1) Bob Ley is retiring after 40 years at ESPN; he joined ESPN as a SportsCenter anchor in 1979, on the third day ESPN was on the air. In 1980, he hosted the first NCAA selection show and live broadcast of the NFL draft and continued in that role for the next nine years.
In a modern age when every TV studio person has to have their own shtick, Ley had no shtick, he was just really good at his job, and he will be missed.