13) Virginia 85, Texas Tech 77 OT— Random thoughts on this game:
— Game went over the total by 44 points.
— Virginia made 11-24 on arc; teams has been shooting under 30% on arc vs Texas Tech.
— Virginia’s last three wins: two OT games, third win by one point.
— Cavaliers’ two Final Four opponents both had a starter get hurt just before they played Virginia.
— Last year, Virginia was the first #1-seed to lose in the first round; they took a ton of grief for that. The value of sports is learning from adversity, keeping your head up and doing better the next time. Tony Bennett showed tremendous class; hope he enjoys this a lot.
12) From 2014-17, eight baseball teams finished 10+ games above .500 in one-run games; those eight teams, the next season, went a combined 169-178 in one-run games. Very tough to replicate success in close games two years in a row.
11) Exception to the rule; Seattle Mariners went 26-15 in one-run games two years ago, then went 36-21 LY. So the Mariners went 62-36 in one-run games for two years but didn’t make the playoffs either year, then they did almost a total rebuild this past winter. Unusual.
10) Must be noted that in 2015, the Cubs went 34-21 in one-run games, then only 22-23 the next year, but that next year was when they won the World Series- they were 66-25 in games decided by 3+ runs.
9) In 2016, Texas Rangers went 95-67 and made the playoffs; they were an amazing 36-11 in one-run games. Since then, Texas went 78-84 in 2017, then 67-95 in ‘18, fired their manager last winter after going 25-43 in one-run games. Success is difficult to sustain.
8) Over the last five years, the Reds are 85-145 in one-run games, winning 68 or fewer games each of the last four seasons.
7) Last three years, Minnesota is 45-68 in one-run games, even though they jumped from 57 to 85 wins in 2017- they were 15-18 in one-run games that season.
6) Mariners 12, Royals 4— Whit Merrfield has a 29-game hitting streak; he’s gotten a hit in his first AB in nine of those 29 games.
Daniel Vogelbach has homered in four straight games for Seattle. Felix Hernandez left the game in the 2nd inning with “flu-like symptoms”
5) Louisville basketball coach Chris Mack posted a picture of himself on Twitter Monday; he is in the hospital this week, getting a knee replaced. Must be a dead period for recruiting.
4) Cubs 10, Pirates 0— Good news for the Cubs; they scored six runs in the second inning and jogged to a win in their home opener.
Bad news for the Cubs; Jon Lester left in the 3rd inning with a hamstring injury.
3) Underrated baseball record: Ted Williams reached base safely in 84 consecutive games, which is the all-time record. Tampa Bay’s Tommy Pham has now reached base 43 games in a row, so he’s more than halfway to the record.
2) Jon Rothstein of CBS is reporting that Chris Mullin will step down as coach at St John’s this week. Apparently they’re going after Arizona State’s Bobby Hurley, who is from New Jersey, but he could be in line to replace Mike Krzyzewski at Duke when that time comes.
If I ran St John’s, we’d give Bruce Pearl a call. Think he would be big in New York City, but not sure where he stands with the NCAA.
1) Thought this was a poor season of college basketball; quality of play is down, the most talented players are mostly 18 years old,. Kids either jump to pro ball or transfer to a bigger name school every time they make two layups in a row. Far less continuity in teams from year to year now, which decreases the quality of play.