Still waiting on the next big FA to drop, or next big trade to occur. Only 1 of the top 5 free agents have signed, and really very few actual trades this winter. If not for the M’s and Jerry Dipoto making five or six trades involving significant ML players, or the Reds acquiring back of the rotation pitchers, there really has not been a lot of player movement.
ML players that have changed addresses include, James Paxton, Robinson Cano, Edwin Diaz, Mike Zunino, Jean Segura (M’s), Carlos Santana, JP Crawford (Phils) Edwin Encarnacion, Yan Gomes, Yandy Diaz (Indians), Jake Bauers, Mallex Smith (Rays), Matt Kemp, Yasiel Puig, Alex Wood, Kyle Farmer (Dodgers), Sonny Gray (NYY), Omar Narvaez (ChiSox), and Tanner Roark (Nats). There may be others that I am forgetting, but nothing significant since the Dodgers/Reds pre-Christmas trade. There have been rumors of potential big-name trades, but nothing yet. I still think JTR gets moved, I just do not know where. And he may be the only name player to be traded within the next two weeks.
That is enough baseball for me today, because today is SuperBowl LIII.
I know the Super Bowl is more than just a game, but I learned long ago I could not follow both college football and the NFL and picked college football, except for my team…Green Bay Packers. I am an avid Packers fan, but since they are not playing, I plan on hitting the gym during the game with nobody around.
My second team is whoever my Trojans play for. That being said, the Rams have 2 Trojans that I know of (Nickell Robey-Coleman and Robert Woods), and I cannot recall if any Trojans play for the Patriots, so logic would dictate that I would root for the Rams. Not happening. I grew up despising the Rams which is why I became a Packers fan, and I only root for one Cal Bear QB. So, I am rooting for maybe America’s most hated team, the New England Patriots. I know people can’t stand Tom Brady and are tired of seeing the Pats win. But for me I am in awe of what he has accomplished. As an aside, how can you not root for a guy that looks that good with a wife that looks even better! Anyway, five super bowl rings, 4 super bowl MVP’s. I just stop to think what it would be like to have the Dodgers win 5 WS with Clayton Kershaw where he was 4 times WS MVP. How can you not love a winner, especially one as clutch as Brady?
In a league where the average lifespan is less than 7 years (most generous lifespan), and even the great ones find it hard to continue to compete for 10+ years, Tom Brady has been playing and winning since 2000. He won his first Super Bowl after the 2001 season ironically enough beating the Kurt Warner Rams, and winning not only the game but also his first Super Bowl MVP. If they win today, only the Pittsburgh Steelers will have as many Super Bowl rings as will Brady. I have heard it all…he and Belichick cheat, the Pats do not play anyone in the AFC East, and yet they keep winning Super Bowls.
The only season Brady missed was 2008, but that was my favorite Patriots season. The reason? Matty Cassel came in after Brady was injured for the season in the very first game. I have known Matt Cassel since he was in Kindergarten. My daughter and Matt went to a Catholic elementary and middle school together. We became very good friends with the Cassel family and my second son is still good friends with the oldest Cassel, former ML pitcher, Jack.
So, for me, while I will be at the gym, I will still be pulling for the Pats.
In January 1977, I had the very good fortune to work at Super Bowl XI at the Rose Bowl. One of my closest friends was a high school friend of Rex Paul. Rex’s father was former LA Rams linebacker Don Paul. After his football career was over, Paul opened a restaurant in the San Fernando Valley named Rams Horn. He also became a successful caterer and won the bid to cater lunch to the media at Super Bowl XI. We worked through the half time, and then got to watch the remainder of the game. It was a great game between the Oakland Raiders and Minnesota Vikings. The Raiders were led by Kenny Stabler, Fred Biletnikoff, Clarence Davis, Willie Brown, Jack Tatum, George Atkinson, Ted Hendricks…The Vikings still had ¾ of the Purple People Eaters front four with Carl Eller, Alan Page, and Jim Marshall. Doug Sutherland had replaced Gary Larson. Offensively the Vikes were also led by Fran Tarkenton, Chuck Foreman, and Ahmad Rashad. The Raiders had two Trojans, Clarence Davis and John Vella, and were coached by John Madden who was/is best friends with former USC coach John Robinson. They went to Catholic elementary school together and stayed very close. Guess who I rooted for that day. Even though the Raiders won, I was upset because after watching Clarence Davis run up and down the field all day, it was Fred Biletnikoff that won the MVP. Oh yeah, the Raiders beat the Vikings 32-14.
Now to bring it full circle for me in today’s game, John Madden’s best friend and former USC coach John Robinson (also the Rams winningest coach of all time) graduated from Junipero Serra HS (San Mateo), the same school Tom Brady graduated from. And to tie that to baseball, the same high school as graduated Jim Fregosi, Barry Bonds, and Greg Jefferies.
Enough of my reminiscing about some of my Super Bowl moments. Go enjoy Super Bowl LIII. Maybe one of those 4 out of the top 5 FA will sign next week. Go Pats!!