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ALL NEW BUCKY CHANNEL - Coming Soon

The Bucky Channel is making a triumphant comeback. Stay tuned for the latest.

ALL NEW BUCKY CHANNEL - Coming Soon

The Bucky Channel is making a triumphant comeback. Stay tuned for the latest.

Sunday, August 31, 2008

Packers Set Their Practice Squad

After being included in the Packers initial rounds of cuts, DeShawn Wynn is back with the team. Granted, it's on the practice squad, but it's better than nothing.

Other former Packers given a second chance are WR Jake Allen, WR Brett Swain, CB Joe Porter, TE Joey Haynos, LB Danny Lansanah, C Brennen Carvalho, and DT Alfred Malone.

The Packers, however, made no waiver claims. We thought they might put one in on LS Thomas Gafford, but it wasn't the case, so the Packers are still without a designated long snapper. I'm told Johnny Jolly and Tony Moll have taken long snaps in practice.

DT Daniel Muir was claimed by the Colts.

As Advertised, Suppan Stepping Up in August

I've been pretty hard on Jeff Suppan for much of the season, as I've felt he just wasn't delivering on his $40 million contract. But, everyone kept telling me to wait until August or September, because that's when Suppan will really start to shine. Looks like everyone was right.

Suppan lead the Brewers to an 11-3 victory over the Pirates on Saturday night, as he ended August with a 5-0 month. Suppan gave up two runs on just three hits in seven innings of work, as is a big reason why the Brewers have been able to extend their Wild Card lead to 5 1/2 games.

Of course, the offense deserves mention for bringing home 11 runners in the game. Corey Hart hit his 20th homer of the year, to become the first Brewer to steal 20 bases and hit 20 homers in two seasons. Also homering was Mike Cameron, who hit his 24th home run of the season. That's a pretty good number for someone who missed the entire month of April.

Both Cameron and Hart had multiple hits, as did Weeks, Hardy, Hall, and Kendall.

TBC's Player of the Game: Jeff Suppan

Box Score.

(AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar)

Let's Go To Sarah Palin For Sports

There's been a lot of discussion during the last couple of days regarding John McCain's selection of Sarah Palin for his VP pick. What is of interest to us, besides the fact she may be covering up her daughter's pregnancy, is that she used to be a sports anchor! Enjoy... (via Ball Don't Lie)



Still an interesting choice for VP, but still hot.

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Few Surprises as Packers Trim to 53

Mike McCarthy says that today is his least favorite day of the year, the day in which the roster is cut down to 53 players. Veterans that have been with the club for years are shown the door, while the NFL dreams of undrafted rookies are cut short. On the other side of the token, 53 guys are rewarded for their hard work during the summer, and given the chance to participate in the quest for a Super Bowl ring.

There were no big surprises among those that were cut, but the biggest names have to be running backs Noah Herron and Vernand Morency. The two were cut basically after the emergence of Kregg Lumpkin, who is most likely having the best day of his life.

The rest of the cuts were WR Jake Allen, CB Scorpio Babers, DT Conrad Bolston, C Brennen Carvalho, S Tyrone Culver, LB Spencer Havner, TE Joey Haynos, G Ryan Keenan, LB Danny Lansanah, DT Alfred Malone, DT Daniel Muir, CB Joe Porter, WR Johnny Quinn, WR Taj Smith, WR Brett Swain, OT Orrin Thompson and FB Corey White.

I was really pulling for Orrin Thompson to make the team, as the Packers drafted his brother, defensive lineman Jeremy Thompson, in the 4th round of this year's draft. That has to be a tough situation for the family, as the younger brother makes the team for the first time, while the veteran brother is left to look for work elsewhere.

If you're wondering where LS J.J. Jansen, G Junius Coston, and DT Rodney Allen are, they were all placed on the injured reserve.

So the roster is set to 53, the Packers aren't done yet. From JS Online:

There weren't too many surprises among the cuts, although the Packers released three defensive linemen -- Daniel Muir, Conrad Bolston and Alfred Malone -- which means they are in the market for another tackle and could make a trade or pick one up on waivers in the next 24 hours. The only three defensive tackles on the 53 are Ryan Pickett, Colin Cole and Johnny Jolly.
Plenty of moves yet to be made, as the Packers will also need a long snapper, and may be tempted to pick up a veteran quarterback (Joey Harrington, Chris Simms, Quinn Gray, and Jared Lorenzen were all cut today).

Badgers Beat a Lesser Opponent at Home.... Cool...

I love college football as much as the next guy, but I have to admit it was a little hard for me to get up and get excited about today's Badger game. I just feel like today's game is one I've seen hundreds of times.

The higher ranked Badgers welcome in a team that isn't very good. The Badgers are favored by about 30 points or so. The Badgers struggle in the first half. The Badgers pull away in the second half, but don't cover the spread.

Been there, done that.

I'm not trying to be a downer about college football, but this game really doesn't matter, unless of course the Badgers were to lose. Which was very unlikely. So while we're only treated to some 12 Badger games a year, we have to sit through stinkers like this one three or four times every season. It'll be the same next week against Marshall. It'll be even worse later this season when they take on Cal Poly.

Perhaps it has something to do with the fact that it's still August, and I'm not ready to be in college football mode. But more likely, it's just not fun watching something when you already know what the outcome will be.

As far as the game today, the Badgers did win (although didn't cover the spread), as they beat Akron 38-17. Allan Evridge didn't have to do much, he went 7 for 10, with 75 yards, 1 TD, and 1 INT. Tight end Garrett Graham caught the TD pass.

The real story for the Badgers was the running game, as usual. Wisconsin gained a total of 404 yards on the ground, 210 of them coming from P.J. Hill. Hill also had two touchdowns on the day. Zach Brown added 87 yards and a touch, while John Clay scored while gaining 71 yards.

The #13 rated Badgers start the season 1-0, and will take on Marshall next week.

Crew Extending Wild Card Lead

All the Brewers needed Friday night was one swing of the bat to beat the Pirates, as Ryan Braun's 3 run shot lead the Brewers to a 3-1 victory. The Brewer's bats were silent for much of the rest of the night, but they had already done what they needed to do. Another win on their chase to their first playoff birth since 1982.

Friday night also featured a solid performance out of our pitching staff. Bush picked up his 9th win of the year to improve to a .500 record. He went 6 2/3 innings, allowing just one run off six hits. Brian Shouse and Eric Gagne held steady through the later innings, and Salomon Torres picked up his 26th save of the year.

Whether you like to admit it or not, this is a huge series for the Brewers. The Pirates roster is near Triple A caliber right now, and the Brewers have a prime opportunity to go for the sweep and extend their lead in the Wild Card race.

St. Louis and Philadelphia both lost on Friday night, so the Brewers picked up a game on each of them. It's now a 4 1/2 game lead for the Brewers as they chase the Wild Card. If you haven't already, I think it's time to forget about winning the NL Central. Even though we still have six left against the Cubs, they are destined for the best record in the NL. Let's just focus on getting the Wild Card, and making the playoffs. That's when we'll have our best chance at Chicago.

With one month to go, you have to be pretty excited about a 4 1/2 game lead in the Wild Card. This is something I've personally been waiting my whole fan life for, so make sure you enjoy it while you can. I'm maybe enjoying it a little too much, as I've just locked up Brewers playoffs tickets (keep in mind, unemployment just around the corner). But hey, something tells me it's going to be worth it.

Box Score.

TBC's Player of the Game: Ryan Braun

(AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar)

Friday, August 29, 2008

It's Official: Chad Ocho Cinco

Apparently the man we knew as Chad Johnson as officially changed his name to Chad Ocho Cinco. First, I want to say that is the greatest thing I have ever heard. Second, get this guy on your fantasy teams, because crazy = good. Trust me. According to Lot D:

I just called the Broward County (Fla.) Court Clerk and Chad Johnson is no longer.

Officially, legally, yesterday, his name was changed to Chad Ocho Cinco.

Bengals spokesman Jack Brennan said the team has no announcement or response to the reports that the receiver has legally changed his name.

In 2006 Johnson was fined for wearing an "Ocho Cinco" nameplate on the back of his jersey for pregame warm-ups. He wore "Johnson" on the back of his jersey for the game.

Now, presumably, he would be able to wear Ocho Cinco on the back of his jersey and the Bengals could sell them.

Bengals.com hasn't made the switch yet, and there's nothing in the Cincinnati newspapers. But Wikipedia has come through as they so often do, and made the switch!

Good News For You, Bad News For Me

You may have noticed that today I've been able to throw up more posts during the day, instead of waiting until I get home for work. We'll, there's a very good reason for that.... I have the day off.

Actually though, you can probably expect more day posts, as I have walked away from the television industry after four years of part-time and full-time work. That means there will be less of these floating around the internet in about two weeks(wait about 12 seconds):



As for what I plan to do next, well it's going to be a lot of job searching, and a lot more time working on the blog. Unless, of course, I decide to pull a Constanza.

Phelps to Host SNL

Here's some news for those of you that like to stay home on Saturday nights (ahem... me). When Saturday Night Live kicks-off it's 34th season on September 13th, it will be hosted by none other than Michael Phelps, swimming sensation.

Good for Phelps to enjoy the spotlight while he can, because as is the case with any Olympic hero, he will soon be forgotten. I mean, how much do people talk about Michael Johnson these days, anyway?

Let's Make Some Roster Cuts

Turns out projecting the Packers final 53 man roster is a very popular thing to do, as several of my favorite blogs and writers have already done so. I've resisted looking at them though, in order to give you my true opinion on the roster cuts (with a little help from my brothers, I might add).

As important as last night's loss to the Titans was in helping determine roster cuts, many of these decisions are the result of the entire training camp period, not just one game (By the way, if you're looking for stats and details about the game, head over to Packers.com. No recap from me because instead of watching the game I attended my brother's high school soccer match. He scored the game winner, so it was more than worth it).

However, if you're looking for strictly the highlights, I can help you out there:



Now on to the 53 man roster:

QB (3): Aaron Rodgers, Matt Flynn, Brian Brohm

Rodgers has looked wonderful this preseason, and I'm ready to finally see how he'll perform when these things count for real. Brohm is the number two, althought Flynn has played better, and with more confidence. There is an outside chance the Packers go and sign a guy like Daunte Culpepper, but I still think we're not going to sign a veteran unless one of these guys actually go down.

RB (4): Ryan Grant, Brandon Jackson, Noah Herron, Kregg Lumpkin

Vernand Morency's career as a Packer will be over, and that seems to be the common consensus among Packers fans. Four running backs might still be one too many when Ted Thompson does his version of this, but Kregg Lumpkin has been to impressive to cut. Jackson and Herron have looked good this preseason.

FB (2): Korey Hall, John Kuhn

No surprises here.

WR (5): Donald Driver, Greg Jennings, James Jones, Ruvell Martin, Jordy Nelson

The Packers have a lot of receivers vying for that 6th spot, and even though there are some decent candidates, none of them are going to be making the team. Brett Swain and Jake Allen have practice squad written all over them, while my guy Taj Smith has slowly faded into obscurity. Perhaps the Packers take six, as Jones is a little banged up, but I've seen the Packers go into games with only three healthy receivers before, and Jones will be fine soon enough.

TE (3): Donald Lee, Tory Humphrey, Jermichael Finley

Donald Lee could have a breakout year, I've been targeting him in my fantasy drafts. Humphrey is now a legitimate two, and Finley could shine if given the chance.

OL (8): Chad Clifton, Scott Wells, Mark Tauscher, Jason Spitz, Daryn Colledge, Allen Barbre, Josh Sitton, Tony Moll

Here's where things start to get tricky. I've cut Orrin Thompson and Breno Giacomini, although I'd be surprised zero percent if they both made the roster. I probably should have kept an extra offensive linemen here, but I found it tougher to cut the defensive fringe guys than the offensive ones.

DL (9) : Aaron Kampman, Ryan Pickett, Johnny Jolly, Cullen Jenkins, Colin Cole, Kabeer Gbaja-Biamila, Daniel Muir, Jason Hunter, Michael Montgomery

Jeremy Thompson is one of the cuts here, which means neither of the Thompson brothers made the team. I'm going with Hunter for his special teams play, and Muir because he is a body on the line. There's speculation KGB could be sent either the PUP list, or be cut outright. Perhaps traded.

LB (7): A.J. Hawk, Nick Barnett, Brady Poppinga, Brandon Chillar, Desmond Bishop, Abdul Hodge, Tracy White

One of the things me and my brother have agreed on the most is our desire to see the Packers keep seven linebackers. Maybe it's not traditional, but it's not that far of a stretch, and these guys are just too good to just cut. The linebackers stole the show last night (as I've been told), and have played well as a unit. If one of these guys is cut, however, it's likely to be Tracy White. Or Hodge. Or Bishop. Ah, just keep seven.

CB (5): Charles Woodson, Al Harris, Will Blackmon, Tramon Williams, Pat Lee

Not much surprise here. You have your two veterans, your two young guys that can return kicks, and your rookie.

S (4): Atari Bigby, Nick Collins, Aaron Rouse, Jarrett Bush

I said goodbye to Culver and Peprah, instead keeping Jarrett Bush. Bush has caught a lot of flack this preseason, but the Packers have had a tradition of always keeping that guy in the secondary that seems to suck in the preseason (read: Terrell Buckley, Lenny McGill, Marques Anderson)

LS (1): J.J. Jansen

Jansen has actually had a very disappointing preseason. There's talk he could be put on the IR, and the Packers go elsewhere (perhaps Thomas Gafford?)

K (1): Mason Crosby

P (1): Jon Ryan

No challenge for these guys.

So that's my list, although likely nowhere near what Ted Thompson will decide to do. Last year I would have never though to put 4th string Giants running back Ryan Grant on my list, so expect a trade or two before it's all said and done. Either way, if you look at my list, other blogger's lists, and the final list, it's clear to see there are some very difficult decisions to be made.

McCain Picks Tina Fey for VP

Ok, not really. But seriously, right? She's a dead ringer. Actually, his selection is Sarah Palin, Governor of Alaska. I consider myself someone who follows politics pretty closely, but I have never heard of this woman. I had to Wikipedia her this morning, which one MSNBC reporter admitted to doing as well.

I'm not so sure this is the greatest pick for McCain, although for the time being, he definitely did take the attention away from Barack Obama's speech last night, and brought it right back to him. I don't know if there are too many women that are going to vote for McCain now solely because he picked a woman, but it will definitely stir up interest in his campaign.

Plus, shes pretty hot.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

There We Go, Charter

After Time Warner finally agreed to a deal to carry the Big Ten Network, you know it only had to be a matter of time before the other shoe would drop. Charter Communications has announced they've added the channel as part of their expanded basic cable package, and will be available in time for the Badgers game this weekend.

You have to wonder a bit how things happened so quickly this time around, when last year the cable companies were holding strong in their fight against the Big Ten Network. I guess all it took was one little game against the Akron Zips to finally get the ball rolling.

You done good Charter, now let's see you get to work on the NFL Network.

Don't Stop Believing

We're going to be on the road for much of the day, but I wanted to post this video I came across on SportsBubbler. It's nothing special, but if you like clips of the Packers set to the music of Journey, then this is for you!



I'd also like to announce we will be doing preview type things for the Packer games come the regular season. If you're looking for one about tonight's game vs. the Titans, however, our friends at Pack and Cheese have a few thoughts.

See you back here tonight, my friends.

Bucks Still Headed to China

Even though Yi Jianlian is long gone from Milwaukee, the Bucks are still going ahead with their preseason trip to China. The Bucks will be matched up with the Golden State Warriors as part of the NBA China games. David Stern couldn't have been thrilled when he learned the Bucks had traded Yi, but Yi sucks so who cares.

Here's more on the schedule from JS Online:

Prior to their trip to China, the Bucks will play four games, including three in Wisconsin. The Bucks begin the preseason with a game against the Minnesota Timberwolves on Oct. 6. After a road game against the Detroit Pistons on Oct. 8, the Bucks will return to La Crosse to play the Dallas Mavericks on Oct. 10.

The 32nd annual MACC Fund game will be held Oct. 11 against the Pistons. Upon their return from China, the Bucks will close out their preseason schedule with road games in Minnesota on Oct. 23 and Chicago against the Bulls on Oct. 24.


Sounds good to me. The Bucks should still be well received in China, with the aftermath of the Olympics in Beijing. Those Chinese sure did love those NBA guys. They even loved Michael Redd, who saw much of the tournament from the sidelines. And apparently this trip is justified because Joe Alexander speaks Mandarin, so they'll probably like him too.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

And Now I Hate The Cardinals

That's the thing about baseball, all it takes is one game to change everything. Tuesday night, Brewers fans felt on top of the world as we had put the Cardinals 4 1/2 games back in the Wild Card race. Wednesday night, a different story, as the Cardinals came back in front of their home crowd and celebrated like it they had clinched a playoff birth. I know earlier in the week I was settling for the split, but now that it's happened, I'm a little bitter.

The Brewers sent out Manny Parra, who delivered a pretty solid performance, going six innings, giving up one run, and striking out seven. Carlos Villaneuva got out of a bases loaded jam in the seven to keep things going, but David Riske collapsed in the 8th. So that sucked.

Offensively, we did some things, but not enough to win. I'd chat about this more, about as I mentioned, gotta get back to the fantasy draft (it's a long one, and I'm ready for bed.)

Box Score.

TBC's Player of the Game: J.J. Hardy

(AP Photo/Jeff Roberson)

Let The Fantasy Drafts Begin


I know I've said before that fantasy teams are like dreams. Everyone has them, but nobody else wants to hear you talk them. Well, I'm going to talk about mine, because frankly, I've shared a lot less important information with you anyway.

I'm participating in four fantasy drafts this week, two of which were on Wednesday night. I went into the first of these drafts blind, and by blind I mean all I had in front of me the list put together by Matthew Berry of ESPN.com. I've been quite busy over the last couple of weeks, so my information on all things fantasy is limited. Nevertheless, I'd like to share a few things that happened at my first draft of the night.

* First, you should know this was a ten team draft. You draft 2 QB's, 3 RB's, 5 WR's and then 2 TE, K, and DEF.

* Here is what I came up with, while picking second:

QB Tony Romo - DAL
QB Matt Hasselbeck - SEA
RB Adrian Peterson - MIN
RB Willis MaGahee - BAL
RB Michael Turner - ATL
WR Torry Holt - STL
WR Santonio Holmes - PIT
WR Donald Driver - GB
WR Reggie Williams - JAX
WR Antwaan Randle-El - WAS
TE Tony Schleffer - DEN
TE Dustin Keller - NYJ
K Neil Rackers - ARI
K Matt Stover - BAL
DEF Green Bay Packers
DEF Tampy Bay Buccaneers

Obviously, the starters are in bold.

* Running backs went off the board first, per usual, sprinkled with Brady, Manning, and Moss. The WR rush occured in the second and third rounds.

* This left some high rated backs to fall deep in the draft. Maurice Jones-Drew went 40th overall, while Edgerrin James didn't go until the 8th round.

* Brett Favre went in the 5th round. The same owner took Aaron Rodgers in the 13th.

* When you draft, make sure you know your bye weeks. I was this draft's annoying "Hey, when is the Jaguars bye?" guy.

* I was all set to take Tony Gonzalez, but then I changed my mind for and picked my 3rd starting receiver, Donald Driver. Homer pick.

* Jamal Lewis went in the 5th round, and I almost took him over Willis MaGahee in the 3rd. I'm very high on Jamal Lewis this year for some reason.

* This draft was a good practice for my Friday draft, which is the one I care about the most. That being said, tonight was good practice for that draft. Not for the actual picks however, but for the corny jokes made during the draft. Work on those Michael Vick / Shaun Alexander / Travis Henry jokes now people!

* Jason Witten was the 1st tight end taken, over Antonio Gates.

* I took my backup QB, Matt Hasselbeck, before I took a Tight End, Kicker, or Defense.

* This was a 16 round draft, yet the first kicker, Nate Kaeding, was drafted in the 11th. Don't take kickers until the last two rounds, people.

So those are just a few random thoughts from my first draft of the night. I'm doing another draft as we speak, and I've already fallen into the drop of taking guys more than once. Right now I have Romo and Driver again.

I love fantasy, so feel free to leave me your draft thoughts in the comments. And if you really want, I wouldn't mind hearing about your dreams, either.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Brewers Continue to Piss Off Cardinals

Still steaming over getting swept by the Brewers at home last month, the Cardinals were given another reason to hate Milwaukee Tuesday night. With the Brewers comfortably ahead 5-0 heading into the 9th, the Crew decided to tack on another seven runs for good measure, in a 12-0 victory against St. Louis.

Talk about adding insult to injury. St. Louis came into Tuesday's game 3 1/2 games behind the Brewers for the Wild Card spot, and this two game series is their only chance to take down the Brewers head on the rest of the way. I was hoping for, if nothing else, a split of these two games to keep the lead intact. But after game one, it's clear the Brewers are on a mission to kick the Cards while they're down, and eliminate them from their rear-view mirrow as they continue their quest for the playoffs.

In recent memory, the Brewers have been notorious for choking in August, if they were even considered good enough to be contenders come August. But this August has been different, this team has been different, and this is not a victory you would have seen from the Milwaukee Brewers one year ago. And I love it.

Leading the way tonight was Ben Sheets, looking to shut up the critics who've been saying he's not pitching like his usual self. Sheets gave up five hits in six innings of work, and struck out four in the process as he improved his record to 12-7.

Even though more than half of the Brewers runs came in the 9th inning, the offense was effective all night long. Ryan Braun went 3 for 5 with a HR, and Bill Hall added a pinch hit homer as well. Prince Fielder had a good night with a 3 for 6 effort, and Jason Kendall had a bases clearing triple to add to his resume. These are the kind of things I enjoy typing for you, especially when it comes against a division rival, and our main competition for the Wild Card.

So, I wanted the split, and my wish came true. But being 5 1/2 games up on the Wild Card would look pretty attractive, so let's say we go for that Wednesday night.

Box Score.

TBC's Player of the Game: Ben Sheets

(AP Photo/Jeff Roberson)

Instant Replay: Can't This Wait Until April?

I'm not here to debate whether or not instant replay in baseball is a good thing. Frankly, it doesn't really bother me if they have replay or not. Sure, when they plan on implementing it this Thursday, the purists may be unhappy.

"The human element is part of the game," they'll say.

Maybe so, but what if that human element causes your team to miss out on the playoffs because the crew chief thought to rule in favor of a ground rule double rather than a home run.

Either way, both sides, for and against, have valid arguments when talking about instant replay.

But I'm not here to talk about that.

My only concern with this, and I think it's a big one that isn't being talked about, is that they plan to implement the system in the middle of the season. What? I thought changing rules mid-way was something reserved for when you were losing a game you and your brothers created in the backyard.

At the beginning of the season, MLB didn't have instant replay. But then there were a few weeks in May where it seemed every home run was being debated, and the issue was brought to the forefront. It seemed like instant replay was inevitable, and that it would soon be implemented in baseball. But when I first heard discussions about this, I thought for sure it would be something voted on during the Winter Meetings.

Not during the actual season itself.

Think about it. What if for 8 weeks the NFL decided not to have instant replay, but then midway through the season they changed their mind? To me, that would jeopardize the whole integrity of that season. You can't play two halves of a season with a different set of rules.

What if the NBA decided in March to change the shot clock from 24 to 35? What if 4 months into the season the NHL eliminated their icing rule. What if your fantasy football league decided to give a point per receptions this year, only you didn't start awarding them until week 10?

Yeah, these things are bound to happen much more frequently than there will be a need to look at the replay machine in baseball. But changing the rules mid-season still seems questionable to me.

If only there was a way to review that decision.

Monday, August 25, 2008

Let's Go For the Split!

With a two game set in St. Louis starting Tuesday for the Brewers, you gotta be happy if they walk away with the split. So far this season, the Brewers are 9-4 against the Cardinals, and it's the difference in the Wild Card standings right now, with the Brewers 3 1/2 games up. Splitting the upcoming series will keep those standings in tact, and leave the Brewers in a good position as they move forward.

It's at a time like this when you realize how huge that four game sweep a month ago in St. Louis turned out to be. That sweep has allowed the Brewers a little breathing room as they try to make the playoffs for the first time in my lifetime. Just as the Cubs sweep of the Brew in Miller Park has given them some breathing room, and in prime position to win the NL Central.

Even though it's just two games, it's sure to be a great series. Tuesday night the Crew will send Ben Sheets out against Todd Wellemeyer, while Wednesday's game features Manny Parra vs. Adam Wainwright.

Pick up that split boys!

Your Move, Charter

After a year of fighting, Time Warner cable and the Big Ten Network have reached a deal. Just in time for this Saturday's game against Akron, too, which will be shown on the Big Ten Network. If they can do it, what the fuck is taking you so long, Charter Communications? Let's go here!

Not So Sharpe

The NFL Network recently gave Sterling Sharpe the chance to call play-by-play, as he did in last nights game between the Colts and the Bills. He was joined by other NFL Network staples in Marshall Faulk and Deion Sanders. As Awful Announcing shows us, Sharpe has some work to do.
"The broadcast wasn't entirely bad, and the trio eventually settled in a bit, but the first half was beyond horrendous. It seemed as if Sharpe didn't know he was supposed to be doing play-by-play and at times he would go five to seven minutes without even describing the action on the field. During just about every series, and on punts and kickoffs, there were gigantic pauses and dead air while the play was going on, and occassionally players would be running back to the huddle before he would convey the results."
See for yourself...



Say it with me. Yikes. That was rough.

Wynn Cut, Harrell Placed on PUP List

What a difference a year makes. Remember the world before Ryan Grant, where DeShawn Wynn looked to be the answer to the Packers dilemma at running back? Well, the one time hot fantasy pick-up of the week will now be able to lend his services to one of the other 31 teams in the National Football League, as he was released by the Packers today.

Wynn has been battling injuries this preseason, which he really couldn't afford as that backfield was crowded enough already. Ryan Grant is obviously the starter, and Brandon Jackson has had an impressive camp as well. The final three spots now will be between Vernand Morency, Noah Herron, and Kregg Lumpkin (a Bucky Channel favorite). I'm guessing Morency might see the short straw, but it will probably be Lumpkin.

Also cut today were fullback Ryan Powdrell, wide receiver Chris Francies, and offensive lineman Ryan Considine. No real surprises there.

The other roster move made today was the placing of Justin Harrell on the Physically Unable to Perform list. This means Harrell won't be eligible to play in at least the first six games. While I'm not going to yet call Harrell a first round bust, he is looking to be a pretty awful pick. Thompson remains optimistic, but he's probably just trying to save face. Harrell was hurt when we drafted him, so this is no real surprise. The real surprise is that he's not already out for the year.

The Packers roster now stands at 75, but has to be cut to 53 after this week. Packers.com takes a look at the more intriguing battles.

I Was Fooled

I wanted to pass along something I was shown at work today. Follow this link and watch the video. When you're watching, count the number of times the people wearing white shirts pass the basketball. It's important you pay close attention to the number of passes. Do that, and then come back here and click on the "Continue Reading" for the answer.

What did you get? I had 14, but that really doesn't matter. Go back and watch the movie again, only this time keep your eye focused on the right side of the screen. I can't believe how I completely missed this, because now it looks so obvious. Just thought I'd share.

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Brewers Sweep Pirates.... Thank God

In a playoff race where your direct competition for the postseason seemingly never loses (Cubs and Cards both won today), you need to win every game possible. That includes games against below-average competition, which appeared in Miller Park Sunday in the form of the Pittsburgh Pirates.

It took 12 innings, but the Brewers were able to come away with the 4-3 victory. They had a lot of chances to blow this thing wide open, however, as the Brewers stranded the bases loaded in both the 3rd and 4th innings. But the got the runs when they needed it, including a Mike Cameron solo shot in the 8th, and a J.J. Hardy game winning RBI in the 12th.

CC Sabathia had a similar performance to his last outing, giving up a handful of hits but somehow keeping the runs off the board. He was only able to last six innings, as Yost pinch hit Gabe Kapler for him in the 6th. Yost's decision paid off, and the Brewers took a 2-1 lead at that point in the game.

The Pirates came back, and headed into the bottom of the 8th inning, we had a 2-2 contest on our hands. That's when Mike Cameron blasted a shot out of the ballpark to take the 3-2 lead. Mike Cameron ended up with four singles and a home run on Sunday, his first ever 5 career hit game. He also raised his batting average from .245 to .257 in just one game.

Salomon Torres couldn't hang on for the save though, and we were treated to some free baseball. Carlos Villanueva picked well in his first inning, but started to collapse and loaded the bases with no outs in the 12th. Enter: Guillermo Mota. Many of us were calling for his head earlier in the year, but he pitched brilliantly to get out of a jam in which the Pirates seemed destined to score. Thank you, Guillermo, and sorry about everything I ever said about you before.

For the game heroics, the Brewers turned to J.J. Hardy. It was his bobblehead day, after all, and he was given the chance to bring Rickie Weeks home for the game winner. And that he did. Weeks, and then Hardy were mobbed by their teammates, all shirts untucked, as the Brewers swept the Pirates in front of another sell-out crowd at Miller Park.

Thank God.

Box Score.

TBC's Player of the Game: Oh man. FSN went with Hardy, and Mota is a good choice, too. But if you think about it, it's gotta be Mike Cameron.

(AP Photo/Darren Hauck)

Dream Come True for Redeem Team

This was no easy contest for the United States Men's Basketball team, and it seems they wouldn't have wanted it any other way. After cruising for much of the tournament, the U.S. found themselves just two points up on Spain in the 4th quarter, even though they beat the very same team by 37 just a short week ago. Eventually though, the 118-107 scoreboard read in favor of the United States.

The United States got all they could handle from Spain, who found exactly how to take advantage of what the U.S. gave them on defense. Spain had all the second chances they wanted, and were able to penetrate the hoop a lot more than one would have liked to see.

Juan Carlos Navarro, who was tossed around my fantasy league last year as if he was a hot potato, kept driving to the hoop and floating in shots uncontested in the 4th quarter. His shots were what you'd expect out of a rec basketball game, but nobody wearing the red, white, and blue could stop him.

Spain saw many of their other players give the game of their lives as well, as the Gasol brothers dominated inside, and Rudy Fernandez began to make a name for himself with 22 points.

Despite their 107 point effort, it wasn't enough to capture the Gold medal. Dwyane Wade led the Americans with 27 points, and I'm not sure the U.S. leads at halftime without him. Kobe Bryant was a little to shot happy in the later stages of the game from beyond the arc, but came through huge with the signature play of the tournament, a 4 point play with 3 minutes to go. Kobe lives for the clutch moments, and after that play it became clear the United States would be winning this game.

For you Bucks fans out there, you'll be happy to know Michael Redd did get about a half a minutes worth of playing time as he celebrated his birthday. Even though he played sparingly, I think he was the happiest guy of all. It was strangely surreal to see Michael Redd actually celebrate on a basketball court.

Now not everyone played their best game for the United States, but together they played well enough to be Olympic champions. It truly was redemption for this team, and some are calling it the biggest win in American Basketball history. That's not up for me to decide, but I will tell you this. I can't remember the last time I was this happy at 4 in the morning (well, I can, but it wasn't sports related... you know what I'm talking about!)

Anything less than a Gold would have been a major disappointment, and this group of twelve guys with something to prove came through. As announcers Mike Breen and Doug Collins noted, these guys are already multi-millionaires, they could have anything they wanted. But to see these guys driven by competition, with a smiles that reflected years of hard work, was quite something.

They had to win one of the greatest Olympic basketball games ever to reclaim their position on top of the worldwide basketball stage.

They wouldn't have wanted it any other way.

Twenty Games over .500 For the First Time Since 1992

If the Brewers are going to be blessed with the Pirates making up more than a quarter of their remaining schedule, they better take advantage of it. So far in this series, they have, as they were once against victorious Saturday night in a 6-3 contest.

Jeff Suppan continues to pitch well post All-Star break, going seven innings and giving up three runs. He improves his record to 9-7, and drops his ERA to 4.58. Brian Shouse let Suppan's earned run come home in the 8th inning, but otherwise kept his card scoreless. Salomon Torres then had the chance to pitch the 9th versus his old team, and earned his 25th save of the season.
The Brewers were able to chip away at the Pirates Tom Gorzelanny early. Corey Hart had a sac fly RBI, Prince Fielder added another two, and Ryan Braun brought three runners home. The bottom of the order struggled however, as the only hit that didn't come from the top four batters was a Jeff Suppan single.

The Brewers go for the sweep against Pittsburgh on Sunday, start time 1:05 pm. Look for my parents in the 2nd row behind home plate, as they somehow keep scoring these tickets yet don't invite me.

Box Score.

TBC's Player of the Game: Prince Fielder. Could have been Braun, but Prince was the difference maker early, and had a nice game at 1st.

(AP Photo/Darren Hauck)

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Packers Get Their "Must Win"

Quite honestly, I have no idea how I'm going to be doing these Packers recaps this season. Doing a recap for a Packers game is a little more intense than anything I've done for the Brewers (because they play 148 more times a season), and the Bucks (because their season was done in December). You'll probably be able to find the stats and the play by play elsewhere, just what I'll try to do is just put each game in perspective as to what each win or loss means for our season.

Tonight, however, I'm going to break it down position by position, and just point out some things I noticed in the Packers 24-21 win over the Broncos.

Quarterbacks: Any confidence Packer fans had in Rodgers after the Bengals game were wiped out with his performance against the 49ers last week. But Rodgers, with the pressure on him, delievered with a spectacular performance against Denver Friday night. Spectacular may be too strong of a word for the preseason, but he won a lot of people over tonight.

Rodgers went 18 for 22 with 193 yards and a touchdown. That, my friends, is what a 118.4 rating looks like. Not to mention he also snuck the ball in from the one for a score. I honestly love watching this guy play, and I couldn't be more excited for the Monday Night season opener.

Brohm went 0 for 4, while Flynn went 2 for 2, but neither saw much action. This is a battle that will likely be settled on the practice field, unless one of them completely steps up next week against the Titans.

Running Back: I was impressed with our running game for the most part, even though cumulatively they only averaged 2.9 yards a carry. Kregg Lumpkin had a pretty good game for himself, 11 for 39 with a TD. Brandon Jackson looked alright, but couldn't punch the ball in when the Packers were on the goal line. Noah Herron had a nice run or two, but I remain continually unimpressed with Vernand Morency.

Wide Receivers / Tight Ends: Donald Driver found the end zone, which has been a stranger to him in recent memory, on a nice slant pattern over the middle. It's nice to see he's finally done dropping the ball and willing to give Rodgers a helping hand. James Jones, on the other hand, dropped a very catchable ball, a problem for the whole receiver corp that needs to be solved, and quickly. Greg Jennings had 4 catches for 42 yards, and Tory Humphrey picked up 35 yards on his one reception.

Offensive Line: A few Packers got dinged up tonight, but out of all of them, McCarthy says Josh Sitton's was the most serious. The kid was being mentioned as a possible starter, but now he could miss a substantial amount of time. My guess is a couple of weeks, but I am basing on that on nothing besides my own meandering experience (bonus points for anyone that just got that Baz Luhrman reference. More bonus points if you know who Baz Luhrman is).

Defensive Line: The Broncos ran for 136 yards on the Packers, getting a good chunk of that on their 99 yard scoring drive. A good run defense starts with a good defensive line, so the Packers will have some things to work on in that regard. The Packers did get some good pressure throughout the game, but came away with zero sacks.

Linebackers: Tracy White looking good. He had an interception and a some nice hits, if I recall correctly. I liked the play of Desmond Bishop as well, and Poppinga lead the team with 5 tackles (tied with Aaron Rouse). The Packers have a very good crop of linebackers, and whoever is the last one to get cut will quickly find himself with another team (ala Paris Lenon and Hunter Hillenmeyer).

Secondary: Played pretty well for the most part, I thought. The second and third team guys did a good job of not letting the Denver receivers hang on to the ball when they got their hands on it. Pat Lee almost had a 90 some yard pick six, but couldn't hang on for the interception. Nick Collins had a neck stinger, but should be ready for next week.

Special Teams: Will Blackmon had a nice 43 yard punt return. Jordy Nelson only got his hands on one kick return, for 24 yards. Jon Ryan had a good night, including a 72 yard punt. Mason Crosby had a couple of field goals, to go along with this new commercial.

Overall, I was pleased with the result, especially the play of Aaron Rodgers and the offense. Sure there are a few kinks to work out, and the final cuts will be interesting, but I think this is a team ready to show themselves off to the world September 8th against the Vikings.

If this isn't enough information for you, here's everything you need to know from Packers.com.

Obama Picks Biden as VP


Don't worry conservatives, when John McCain announces his VP choice as a birthday present to himself, I'll post that up here too. But for the time being, it appears the Democratics will be represented this year by a Obama/Biden ticket, as Sen. Joe Biden of Delaware gets the nod.

An Obama/Biden ticket looks a hell of a lot better than a Kerry/Edwards ticket ever did, as well as the Gore/Lieberman campaign (the 2000 version of Gore anyway, not the popular "30 Rock" cameo version of him). Biden's tried for the White House twice, obviously unsuccessful. Where he's from and what he's about probably won't matter, as he's basically the old white guy campaign Barack needs to win over voters still uneasy about not voting for an old white guy.

Even though it's apparently official, I'm still waiting for my text message!

Friday, August 22, 2008

Bats Break Out Against Pirates

Bumped to the back burner by many in the state of Wisconsin because the Packers were on (albeit the preseason), the Brewers put on quite a show for those that were watching. Lead by six runs in the the 7th inning, the Brewers cruised to a 10-4 victory over the Pirates at Miller Park.

The Crew got at least one RBI tonight from every batter 1 through 8, including two each from Hardy, Cameron, and Hart. Cameron and Hardy homered in the contest as well.

Off the mound, it was Dave Bush going seven strong innings, giving up three runs. He improved his record to 8-9 on the season. Gagne gave up a run in the 8th, and McClung pitched a scoreless 9th.

It was a big win for the Brewers, as tonight was unofficially blowout Friday in the NL Central. The Cubs lost at home to the Nationals today 13-5, while the Cardinals beat the Braves 18-3. The Brewers are now 4 1/2 back of Chicago, and still 2 1/2 up on St. Louis.

Admittedly, this wasn't the best Brewers recap I've ever written. As is the theme of the night, this Brewers recap was put on the back burner as I'm watching the end of the Packers game.

Box Score.

TBC's Player of the Game: Corey Hart got things with a 2 RBI double in the 4th, so we'll give it to him.

(AP Photo/Darren Hauck)

Redemption... Almost

They may not have played their best game, but it was still 20 points better than the offering Argentina could come up with. Chris Sheridan of ESPN.com can explain a little better of the USA's struggles, but all that I'm concerned with is that for how off the Redeem Team might have played, they still came away winners.

The U.S. won 101-81, and will now face Spain on Sunday morning in the finals. Carmelo Anthony lead the way with 21 points, although he was just 3 for 14 from the floor. Jason Kidd had 7 dimes for the Americans and kept the team under control, while Michael Redd walked away scoreless in just five minutes of play.

We're thinking about a live blog for the finals Sunday morning, that is, if we get up. I'm participating in an Alumni Soccer tournament on Saturday, and that soreness coupled with the afterparty might make it a late morning.

Update: Just realized the game will be held at 1:30am Sunday morning. Scratch that live blog idea!

Boom Goes the Dynamite... UPDATE!

Last night we told you Brian Collins (... looking good) was able to land on his feet and found a sportscasting gig. Alas, I may have been wrong.

Thanks to this video from Awful Announcing, it looks like Brian is working in KXXV's news department!

Eh... best of luck kid.

Time to Start Cramming

No, Favre didn't get traded again. For the uninformed, that's Allan Evridge, the Badgers starting quarterback. Bret Bielema named his two-deep roster for the August 30th game against Akron earlier this week, and the 5th year senior will get the nod under center. So get to know this guy, he'll be coming into your house every Saturday this fall (if you have Big Ten Network, that is).

For me personally, I am going to have to study the shit out of this two deep roster, because I will admit, my biggest weakness of being a fan in the Badger State is learning the names of the Wisconsin Badgers football team. It always has been. Usually I know the quarterback, the running back, a couple of receivers, the kicker, punter, and maybe one defensive guy. Maybe an offensive linemen too, and it usually helps if they are from Fondy (where is Cory Raymer these days anyway? Maybe I'll try to hunt him down and interview him for the blog. That'd be fun).

The thing about these guys in college football is they only start for one or two seasons, and then they are gone. It's hard to get to know people when they change so often. That, and college football video games never are able to show the name of the player, they always just show the number, so I can't learn that way.

But I'm going to study this thing from now until August 30th, so if Evridge gets a key block from Mickey Turner and hits Issac Anderson in the corner of the endzone, I'll know exactly what the hell just happened.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Farewell, Scott Williams

We're all ready aware that all things must come to an end, but it still stings a little bit when we found out unexpectedly. That's how we felt tonight while checking out The Bratwurst, who shared the news that Scott Williams was leaving the FSN Wisconsin broadcast team for the Milwaukee Bucks.

Williams spent the last year as the co-host of Bucks Live with Craig Coshun, and we thought he did an excellent job. We loved the FSN segment when they brought him in the booth with Paschke and McGlocklin, because Williams provided some great analysis, and did so in a clear and effective manner. He was one of the best parts of watching a Bucks game, we've been saying that since April. He will be missed.

We do, however, feel happy for the guy. His new gig will be with the Phoenix Suns, where he will provide color commentary. Since McGlocklin isn't leaving anytime soon, Williams jumped at the opportunity, and we don't blame him one bit.

What that does mean though is that we might be seeing more of Mike McCullough, who we absolutely couldn't stand last year. Can anyone think of any possible replacements for Williams? How about Vin Baker? Larry Harris? Tractor Traylor? Trenni Kusnierek?

Positive News Regarding Bogut's Ankle Injury

Andrew Bogut wasn't much of a factor in the Australian National Team's loss to the Redeem Team on Wednesday, scoring just four points in the contest. While Australia lost the contest, it appeared as if the Bucks may have lost Andrew Bogut, who sprained his ankle during the game.
This would be more than a crushing blow to the Bucks, who are basically building their future around him, especially after they signed him to a large multi-year extension.

It appears however, that the situation might not be as bad as we thought. Bogut underwent an MRI test on the ankle today. Via the JS Online Bucks Blog:

"The initial tests show no tear or break of anything," said David Bauman, Bogut's agent, when reached by phone today. "It looks like it's a bad sprain, and he will probably need a couple weeks of rest, recuperation and rehab.

"As of now, we're not worried that its' something very serious. It's just a very bad ankle sprain." Bucks general manager John Hammond said he was keeping closely informed on the situation regarding Bogut.

"From what we know at this point, our understanding is the injury is not as significant as first thought," Hammond said today. "That is a relief."


You're damn right it's a relief. I wouldn't expect this injury to linger through October and the start of the NBA season. Perhaps he'll sit out some exhibition contests as a precaution, however.

An Inspiration to Kids Everywhere... Goes the Dynamite

When I first saw the "Boom Goes the Dynamite Kid", I was enrolled in my university's communication program. I was the sports anchor of a program quite similar to the one Brian Collins was a part of, and I couldn't help feel bad for the kid. His nervous and heartbreaking college experience had become an internet phenomenon, and I thought he'd be too devastated to follow his dream of getting into the sports television business.

Turns out, the embarrassment has only made him stronger. Now a graduate from Ball State University, Collins has joined the sports staff at KXXV-TV, an ABC affiliate out of Waco, Texas. If you look at his bio, he's no longer the baby faced anchor he was two years ago. He's apparently never been to Texas before, and we wish him the best in his new endeavor.

The television is a hard business to break into, especially sports. I can't tell you how many rejection letters from stations I've thrown away in my lifetime. While my dreams of anchoring sports have diminished from what they once were, if the "Boom Goes the Dynamite" guy can make it, maybe there's hope for me after all.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

It's Not a Glitch

Here's a video thats been making the rounds on the internet today, and for good reason. If you've ever spent any time playing "Tiger Woods" on your console of choice, you probably know about the "Jesus Shot", where Tiger can shoot while walking on water. Well, apparently, it's no glitch (via Awful Announcing).



Thing is, if that really happened, I wouldn't be that surprised.

Olympic Update: Redeem Team Cruises to Semis

If this U.S. Basketball team doesn't win the Gold, whoever beats them will have pulled off an upset worthy of the U.S. Hockey Team in the 1980 Winter Games. The Redeem Team is destined for the medal, and proved it again today with a 116-85 victory over Australia.

Kobe Bryant lead the way for the U.S. with 25. LeBron James chipped in with 16, and Carmelo Anthony added another 15. As far as the Milwaukee Bucks are concerned, Michael Redd played just 9 minutes to score 5 points. At the other end of the floor for the Aussies, Andrew Bogut could only contribute with 4 points.

Next up for the U.S.: Argentina, 9:15am CDT, Friday.

In other Olympic news, crushes from my teenage years, Kerri Walsh and Misty May-Treanor won the Gold in beach volleyball for the second consecutive time.

Elsewhere, if you haven't heard already, this Usain Bolt guy is pretty fast.

Brewers Bounce Back Against Astros


I just sat here for ten minutes trying to come up with a way to start this posting. I thought about Kapler, maybe something about Hardy. Thought about writing about Parra, or maybe about how the Brewers won the series. But as you can tell, I decided on none of those things. There really was no standout in today's 5-2 win over the Astros. It was about as much of a team effort as you could have asked for.

Manny Parra was effective on the mound, although he only was able to last two innings, giving up two runs. Carlos Villanueva pitched two scoreless after that, followed by Gagne, and the 24th save of the year from Salomon Torres. Interesting sidenote, Gagne and Riske cleared waivers today, meaning they can now be dealt to anyone. I don't see them getting traded, however.

As Ryan Braun continues to heal from an abdominal strain (should we be worried right now?), it has been Gabe Kapler who has been taking his place the majority of the time. While Gabe is clearly no Braun, he has been proving capable in the last few weeks. Today, he chipped in with an RBI single, and a great throw to get Mark Loretta at home.

Elsewhere, Rickie Weeks scored three times, Prince Fielder had 2 RBI on sac flys, and J.J. Hardy went 2 for 4 with a home run.

Not a bad team effort, all the way around.

Box Score.

TBC's Player of the Game: Kapler. His outfield assist and RBI were very timely.

(AP Photo/Darren Hauck)

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Sheets, Brewers Struggle in Loss to Astros

So many things tonight should have worked in the Brewers favor. Today was the shared birthday of Ned Yost, J.J. Hardy, and even Chris Capuano. My "uncle" Henry Winkler was on hand to throw out the first pitch. It was even Fond du Lac Area Night at the ballpark. But even with the stars aligned for a magical evening, the Brewers could only muster a pair of runs in a 5-2 loss to the Astros.

The Brewers got a couple of runs early, via doubles from J.J. Hardy and Mike Cameron. But the Astros stormed back on a 2 run triple from Michael Bourn, followed by a 3 run shot from one of the league's newest Brewer Killers, Geoff Blum.

Sheets, who has been struggling as of late, gave up five runs in the losing effort. He's now 1-5 with a 4.06 ERA in his last five starts. Not what you'd expect out of our "co-ace", but Sheets says he's not pitching as bad as we think he is. Just do what you need to do to right the ship, Benny, because this team isn't going to win anything without you.

Rubber match tomorrow at 1:05, which happens to be La Crosse Area Day. I went to the game last year, when Damian Miller hit the walk-off home run. Hopefully they can expect similar magic in Wednesday's contest. The game isn't on TV, so do what you can to get out to the park.

Box Score.

TBC's Player of the Game: Ah, what the hell. Happy birthday, J.J.

(AP Photo/Darren Hauck)

Don't Take A Bite of that (Big) Apple, Brett!

I mean, I don't know if this "flys" in the religious community or not, but you gotta like the effort. Because of this sign alone, I would definitely choose to worship my Lord at the Waupun Assembly of God. Problem is, I don't live in Waupun. Also, I don't believe in church. Either way though, kudos on the sign.

Church Sign of the Week (OnMilwaukee.com)

Bucks Coming Back to La Crosse, Rest of Pre-Season Schedule Unknown

Believe it or not, that is actually an NBA game being played on that floor, in that arena. Well, it's actually an exhibition game that was held between the Milwaukee Bucks and the Chicago Bulls before the season last year. It's been announced that the Bucks will be making the return trip to La Crosse, taking on the Dallas Mavericks on Friday, October 10th at 7:30pm.

We first caught wind of this when Herb Kohl was in town (again, currently living in La Crosse), and he briefly mentioned the Bucks were coming back here. Nobody followed up on the question, and we were left curious as to why we hadn't heard this news sooner.

That's when we found via the RealGM message boards the article posted last week on the homepage of the Dallas Morning News. The game between the Bucks and the Bulls was a success last year in La Crosse, and made many here regret the fact that the city was unable to lockdown the Arkansas Rimrockers NBDL franchise that was contemplating a move here.

I don't know for sure why the Mavericks would announce their preseason schedule, and the Bucks wouldn't. I know the Bucks had plans to play exhibition games in China this preseason, but that was before Yi Jianlian was dealt to the Nets. Maybe those games are still on and being worked out, or the Bucks are deciding to remain stateside and need to find venues for those contests. I'm sure that will be announced soon enough for the die hard preseason fans out there.

Maybe CC For NL MVP Talk Isn't So Crazy After All...

Could CC Sabathia really win the NL MVP award? I'm not talking the CY Young award, which would be improbable enough for a pitcher that switched leagues midseason, I'm talking the actual NL MVP. The discussion came up the other night on ESPN's Baseball Tonight, and Sabathia's named was seriously considered. After you're done thinking about how crazy of a scenario that would be, think about it some more. Would it be that surprising if he won?

Since being traded to the Brewers, Sabathia is 8-0 with a 1.60 ERA. He's also added a home run in that time, and improved his batting average with a 2 for 3 performance and 2 RBI. In the Brewers 9-3 victory against Houston on Monday, Sabathia went the distance again. I'm actually surprised now when he doesn't go the full nine innings.

It's not just his impact on the field that has put him in consideration to be the Most Valuable Player of the Senior Circuit. His jersey shirt at Miller Park is still selling for $35, and they are flying off the shelves. 10,000 fans walked up to buy tickets the night of his first start, and the Brewers have now sold out 16 straight home games. His arrival put the Brewers in the national spotlight, and changed the national perception of the team to "fun loving young kids" to "serious contenders in the National League".

It's hard to win the MVP as a pitcher, I mean, that's what the CY Young is for. And while I still give the team MVP award to Ryan Braun right now, at the end of the season, should Sabathia keep up this torrid pace, I may have to reconsider. Bottom line, thank God the Brewers traded for him. We're not where we are without him. Whether he's the "most" valuable can be debated, but we all know what he's worth to this team.

Other game notes... Ray Durham went 3 for 5 as Weeks sat with a sprained left thumb. Corey Hart went 3 for 4, which included a home run. Jason Kendall crossed home plate 3 times in tonight's contest.

Box Score.

TBC's Player of the Game: I don't write a Sabathia article and give it to Corey Hart. Sabathia gets the nod.

(AP Photo/Darren Hauck)

Sunday's With CC

I remember the days when ESPN only did one Sunday Conversation a week, now I feel like that number is closer to three or four. Kind of takes the aura out of it, but it's still always fun to see one of your guys in the spotlight. In honor of another complete game victory by the man, here's the Sunday Conversation with C.C. Sabathia.








I still can't believe he's a Brewer.

Monday, August 18, 2008

The Highlight of My Weekend: Michael Phelps

Deep in the middle of wedding season, it can be easy to compare and contrast the ceremonies you attend in a given year. Church or no church? Indoor or Outdoor? How large was the party? How many were invited? Most importantly, was there an open bar?

No two weddings are alike, and that's part of what makes them so fun. Different people, different atmosphere, and if you're lucky, a different girl at the end of the night. But at the two weddings I attended this weekend, there was one glaring similarity: Michael Phelps.

Friday night at the Hilton Garden Inn in Oshkosh was where I was when Phelps was going for number seven. My friends and I had decided that no matter what point we were at in the reception, even if it was time for the Cha Cha Slide, we would be ditching out to the hotel bar to watch Phelps race.

We weren't alone. About 30 others from the wedding made the trip over, and we all had our eyes glued to the tv. The cheer was the loudest I've ever heard for a swimming race, and to be honest, I don't remember too many moments I've been around a louder cheer. It was as if the Packers had just taken the lead in the NFC Championship Game all over again. The race couldn't have been closer, and it was debated throughout much of the night. (It's also probably appropriate here to once again thank the man who bought the entire bar shots of Goldschl├Ąger after the victory).

Thinking that my experience was rare, I told some of the other attendees on the next wedding I was at about what had happened. Turns out, a group of people had gone down to Bloomington, Indiana the night before and were out partying at one of the local establishments. There too, they said, the entire bar focused on the Phelps race, and let out a cheer similar in decible and excitement to the one we let out in Oshkosh. It was then I realized that this had to be a scene occuring all over America. Fairweather swim fans gathering together to watch Olympic history.

On Saturday night, Phelps had one more race to go to complete his quest for eight gold medals in a single Olympics. Again, a group of people decided to find a television during the game, this time it happened to be in the basement at Alumni Hall on the University of Indiana campus. There had to be at least 50 people down there, probably more, gathered to watch the 4x100 relays.

The best part of this race? Even the wedding's groom was glued in front of the TV.

Everytime NBC showed the graphic of who touched first, the place would either cheer in exuberance or groan with dismay. By the time Phelps was swimming, we were all on our feet, and as Jason Lezak brought it home, we found ourselves in someone else's arms, hugging out the victory.

It was sort of a surreal moment, to be gathered with that many friends and strangers, at two different weddings, in two different cities, on two different nights. All of us there for the support of the bride and groom, but bonded by our support of America.

Final count for the weekend? Girls brought up to hotel room: 0. Phelps Gold Medals: 2.

I'm fine with that.

We Have Some Catching Up To Do

If you're running a blog where your goal is to constantly provide updates and analysis on any subject, you end up spending a lot of time on the internet. But sometimes, real life comes calling, and you're forced to part with your beloved laptop for an extended period of time. As I've found out this weekend, two days without internet is an awfully long time.

(By the way. It's either "Internet" or "The Web". Why is everyone using "the Interwebs" these days? It's the most annoying word ever, please stop.)

In the two days we've been gone, we sure did miss a lot. Let's cover our bases now, so that we can get on with business as usual.

Saturday Night - 49ers 34, Packers 6

The Packers drop to 0-2 this preseason, in one of the worst attempts at playing football in the history of the game. Rodgers looked mediocre, although Driver and Lee dropped very catchable balls, which made him look worse than he was. Also, he got sacked about four times, which doesn't bode well for him or the offensive line.

Defensively they played even worse, the main culprit being Jarrett Bush. The defense made J.T. O'Sullivan (or as we know him, JTOS) look All-Pro. We're happy to see the former Packer land on his feet, but anyone that throws like Brian Shouse should NOT be a starting NFL quarterback.

The lone bright spots were Mason Crosby (who has become one of the highest drafted fantasy kickers this season) and Jordy Nelson (we have found this season's return man, folks).

If you're still dying for two to three day old preseason coverage, here's Packers.com's take on the game.

Saturday Night - Broadway Brett Makes Good First Impression

Brett Favre as a New York Jet. It still seems messed up, but Favre is in full swing with his new team. He made his Jets debut in a 13-10 loss to the Redskins, but nobody really cared about that. The numbers they were interested in: 5 for 6, 48 yards, 1 TD.

Congrats to Favre for a good performance, but we're reserving judgement until his first regular season game. We're also trying to figure out just how much we are going to cover Favre this season, but I feel like this is far from the last time you'll see him mentioned on this page.

Saturday Night - Brewers 4, Dodgers 3

One night after losing to the Dodgers, the Brewers eek out the 4-3 victory in 10 innings. J.J. Hardy is our player of the game, as he not only homered in the contest but had the game winning RBI single.

Sunday Afternoon - Dodgers 7, Brewers 5

Down 4 in the 9th inning, the Brewers rallied to extend the game. They do so via a Ray Durham 2 RBI double, and a Ryan Braun 2 run home run. Their success was short lived, as the game ended in the bottom of the 9th with an Andre Either 2 run blast of his own. One of the more deflating losses of the season. Braun earns player of the game in his first start in seven games.

Monday Morning - U.S. 106, Germany 57

This is a Dream Team sized blowout, as the Redeem Team is kicking ass and taking names. However, they seem to be doing so in a pretty respectful manner. So that's good. Next up for the U.S. is a quarterfinal game against Andrew Bogut and Australia on Wednesday morning.

So we think we're caught up now for the most part. What have we learned this weekend? The Brewers need to win games like Sunday's if they are going to win the division. The Packers can never afford to play like that again. The U.S. Men's team is going to win the gold.

More importantly, we never want to go two full days without internet again.

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Quarterback Controversy for Packers?

There may be a quarterback controversy in Green Bay after all. Clearly, we're not talking about the starting job, because Aaron Rodgers is amazing. But all you people that have already bought Brian Brohm may need to settle down, because the Packers are really liking what they are seeing out of Matt Flynn.

If you watched ESPN's coverage of last weeks Packers pre-season game, you no doubt saw the graphic that between the three Packers quarterbacks, they have zero NFL starts. That will of course change in due time, but the Packers don't seem to think it will be a big deal.

Packers.com says Matt Flynn is putting up a pretty good challenge for the No.2 QB job, which is fine with me, because a good competition will only make both Brohm and Flynn better. The issue that Packer fans have though is, if Rodgers gets hurt, are we really comfortable with Brohm or Flynn taking control of this team?

The Packers have talked about signing a veteran to come in, even previously offering a contract to Daunte Culpepper. In my opinion, the Packers will be fine with either Brohm or Flynn as their No.2, as long as Rodgers stays healthy. Should he get hurt for an extended period of time, that's when you'll see a veteran signing.

We'll see how they do tonight against the 49ers, game time now just three hours away.

"Redeem Team" Win Big Over Gasol and Spain

I woke up just in time to see this rout take place this morning. I reluctantly use the term "Redeem Team" I think I'm finding out that I am the only person who hates that name but I digress.

Team USA beat up on Pau Gasol and Spain 119-82. It was an offensive barrage led by LeBron James(18 pts) and Dwyane Wade(16 pts). Carmelo Anthony also had 16 points and was big from behind the arc shooting 4-6. Michael Redd checked in to score 4.

Spain had a lot of noticable NBA players such as Pau and Marc Gasol, Rudy Fernandez, Juan Carlos Navarro, Jose Calderon, and Jorge Garbajosa. I figured it might be a good game. But even from the start Spain looked completely over matched.

I simply do not see this team losing. And I can't imagine any other country will get close. They are too talented, have great team chemistry, the right mix of players and a great coach.

I would have shown a picture, but NBC has threatend to kill my family if I put something visual from the Beijing games....just kidding NBC....but not really.

Crew Drop one to Dodger Blue


The Brewers dropped another tough game last night against Chad Billingsley and the LA Dodgers, 3-5. Parra started out relatively well but struggled through the 4th and 5th innings. He ended with 5 and 2/3 innings pitched while giving up 4 runs and striking out 6 in the loss.

Even though Kapler has played well, I think it is safe to say the Brewers miss Braun's presence in the line up. The Crew have now dropped 2 straight. Really though, winning just one in this series would be satisfiable considering we have our 3, 4, 5 starters playing a hot team on the road and on the west coast, which has been a house of horrors for the Crew over the years.

By the way, its pretty safe to say Mike Cameron is on fire right now. In the month of August he has hit 5 HR, 1 3B, scored 12 runs, has an average of .304, and OBP of .418 and a ridiculous OPS of 1.136.

I'll be honest about last nights game which started at 9:40 pm central time. I didn't catch a whole lot of it. Unlike Winks, I'm a certified Olympics fiend. I'm talking day, night, live, taped, online, any format really. I even keep it on while I sleep in case I wake up so I can catch whats going on. I really get in to the whole country pride thing. In years past, America has kind of shied away from that, but this year I have seen more of it and it's kind of refreshing. Maybe it's because we have a country that rivals us closely in China during these games. Say what you want about the Olympics, but it really is the epitome of sport, the best at what they do vying for not only themselves but for their country. Either way last night I was watching more 10K walk race and heptathlon than my beloved Crew and America's past time.

The one thing about last nights game that did bug me was Corey Hart's 0-4 performance and especially his 0-2 with RISP. Hopefully Braun is back in the line up Sunday as he is expected to be out again tonight.

Catch the Crew tonight, unless you are watching the Olympics which is completely acceptable. Game time is at 9:10 pm on FSN Wisconsin, Dave Bush v. Derek Lowe.


Box Score

TBC's Player of the Game: Gotta give it to Gabe Kapler. 2-4 with a first inning HR too bad it wasn't enough.

(AP Photo/Gus Ruelas)

Friday, August 15, 2008

Time to Start Thinking September Call-Ups

With the Brewers seemingly not deciding to tank in August this year (knock on wood), September call-ups are going to be as important as ever this year. There aren't too many players the Brewers could call up that would actually make a huge impact, but they can still benefit greatly from the roster expansion.

Jeff Weaver was talked about as a call-up much earlier in this year, but he has since left the organization. Taking his place as washed up player in the Brewers system is Jay Gibbons, but I wonder if the Brewers will be willing to bring back up this quickly.

I would imagine a few bullpen arms to be added, including Randy Choate, who has practically been stashed on the DL all season as we wait for the call-ups. Joe Dillon seems to be an obvious call up for the offense. The rest of the positions could be up for grabs, but you never know just how many players a team will call up. A lot of people would love to see Mat Gamel and Alcides Escobar get the nod, which might be less likely than we think.

The guys at Bernie's Crew do an excellent job of analyzing just who may be called up in a couple weeks. Just don't expect Mel Stocker to be one of them.

Thank God This Didn't Happen

Would you rather have these updates that really just send you to another article, or would you rather not have The Bucky Channel be updated at all? I'd rather have the former, and that's what I'm doing with this post.

I remember when Joe Horn was a free agent last year, and I remember chatting with fellow Packer fans about how we should sign him. Alas, I was just joking, but apparently the Packers were not. In his new gig at The National Football Post, former Packers finance man Andrew Brandt talks about how the team almost signed Joe Horn last season.

Again, thank God that didn't happen.

Mrs. Listach, We Found Your Son!

I'll forgive Pat Listach for wearing a Chicago uniform, if only because the Brewers and Cubs were not rivals, much less opponents, when he spent his time in Milwaukee. But in case you have wondered just where he's been since his 1992 rookie of the year award and successive demise, he's been having a pretty successful career as a manager.

Listach began coaching in 1998, and was named the hitting coach for the Cubs Single-A affiliate in 2000. Like ballplayers, the goal is to work up the minor league system, and Listach has been doing just that. This year he began is first full season as manager of the Triple-A Iowa Cubs. (Sidenote: I never know whether to write Triple-A or Class AAA. Anyone know the more "appropriate" way?)

It's still sad to see one of our former beloved Brewers in the Cubs organization (I'm looking at you too, Henry Blanco), but it's nice to see Listach find success. So far, he seems to be much better of than Jim Gantner, who is managing the Wisconsin Woodchucks of the Northwoods League.

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