SportsCrack Blog

Thursday, November 13, 2008


Watching ACC football can sometimes be painful to the eyes. Don't get me wrong, it's not nearly as boring as Big Ten football or as wretched as a Dane Cook comedy special. But the ACC produces a ton of NFL players(mostly from Miami and FSU) and yet always has marginal teams which is code for shitty in SEC minds. So tonight we get the once proud ghetto program of the Miami Convicts going against the Vagina Tech Stokies. I'm not going to sugarcoat this matchup... it could be very ugly football but entertaining if you are into sadomasochism like myself. Sort of like watching midget porn. You can't help but watch it even when every logical part of your brain tells you it's just wrong and not as funny as it looks. So yeah, ACC football is like midget porn.

Instead of going into an in-depth mumbo jumbo preview about these two programs and how they stack up against each other I figured I would let a video demonstrate the magnitude of this game tonight on ESPN...



The Dallas Stars' Mike Ribeiro pulled the ultimate deke shot on the King's goaltender Erik Ersberg the other night and I thought it deserved some attention from the Sportscrack nation out there. At first I was with the announcers thinking he just accidently fucked up and somehow pulled the goal out of his ass like Andy Dick landing roles in Hollywood. But then watching the slow motion instant replay you realize Ribeiro meant to go through his legs with the deke. Hell of a play and I'm sure Dick would love to be waiting on hands and knees to congratulate him afterwards like a dog. Speaking of dogs I like how Ribiero is barking back at the Kings bench after scoring.

Video Ht: FanIQ


Tomorrow marks the opening of the 2009 MLB free agency market. Or as I like to call it the crazy, overpaid, makes no sense bonanza chock full of bull shit rumors and innuendo fueled by Satan (Scott Boras) and the owners and players who play things close to their chest. But you should know I love this time of the season because the baseball season itself can be long and boring at times and if you tend to root for a perennial loser like myself (don't worry, the Orioles are turning it around) you look forward to who you may or may not get to help improve your team or the other teams in your division. Call it the NFL draft if it was dragged out for 3 months or so. Baseball wouldn't have it any other way.

And despite a struggling economy where hundreds of thousands of everyday normal people who go to baseball games are losing their jobs and their homes don't expect the free spending owners to tighten up their wallets. As commissioner Bud Selig reminds anyone who will listen baseball has never brought in more revenue.

Here is my list of the top 10 major league baseball free agents hitting the open market tomorrow with predictions as to where they may land. Feel free to chime in with your thoughts in the comments section...

1. C.C. Sabathia-Good big league starting pitching is always a premium and Sabathia tops the list for free agent pitchers this offseason. Sabathia used a second half stint in Milwaukee after being traded from Cleveland as his own personal playground by dominating the senior circuit and was the main reason why the Brewers reached the playoffs for the first time since 1982. Sabathia will get a huge deal despite the wear and tear on his arm and his belly so don't be surprised if he passes the money Barry Zito got a couple of off seasons ago. Sabathia is a proven #1 ace and will get at least a 9 figure contract from someone willing to dish out the dough for the doughboy.

PREDICTION: The New York Yankees need starting pitching and with guys like Giambi, Mussina, Pettitte, Pavano and others all coming off the payroll and them missing the playoffs for the first time since the mid 90's it creates a perfect storm for Sabathia to accept a contract upwards of $140 million.

2. Mark Teixeira-A middle of their prime superstar first baseman who hits like a Silver Slugger winner and fields like a Gold Glove winner is going to get a lot of attention. Teixeira is 29 years old and is the perfect cleanup hitter for any major league team. He also is a switch hitter with power from both sides and is a smart hitter who gets on base over 40% of the time while stroking a ton of extra base hits. He made Chipper Jones and Vladimir Guerrero better players in my opinion during his short stints with the Braves and Angels. He is a Severna Park, MD native like myself and grew up an Orioles fan along with his family. The whole state of Maryland wants Teixeira back at his home and playing for the O's while hitting between young phenoms like Nick Markakis, Adam Jones, and Matt Wieters.

PREDICTION: The Baltimore Orioles and Peter Angelos will open up their checkbook and do whatever it takes to bring Tex home. The O's need starting pitching and a shortstop too but bringing in Tex would be a huge boost to ticket sales and draw back interest for the fallen franchise. I think he will get at least a $150 million contract.

3. Manny Ramirez-ManRam was a beast for the Dodgers last season and like Sabathia helped push his team into the playoffs. Ramirez is probably the second best right handed hitter in the game right now behind Pujols and has been a RBI machine where ever he has played. His personality or laziness as I would call it can be very annoying to some but in Southern California it can be tolerated by the fans unlike the East Coast teams. His age is up there(he will be 37 next season) and his fielding is terrible at times but Manny is like a fine wine and I really can't think of another hitter I would want up over him with runners in scoring position.

PREDICTION: The Los Angeles Dodgers will pay a lot to secure Manny's return to LA. He is too valuable for their team and I think he is the perfect fit in that lineup surrounded by all the young guys. The Dodgers will cave and give him 4 years at $100 million thanks to Scott Boras.

4. Francisco Rodriguez-K Rod set a major league record last year with 62 saves for the Angels and should get a ridiculous contract from somebody not named the Angels. It seems that owner Artie Moreno is fine with letting Rodriguez leave because they tried to renogiatiate 3 times last year and still failed to resign him. Closers are a dime a dozen in my book and there is always some young hot shot ready to be one so I don't think giving a closer Mariano Rivera type money is prudent. My guess is some team will be stupid enough to overpay him and he will fizzle away within 3 years. I say this because honestly he wasn't very impressive late last season despite setting the save record.

PREDICTION: He has New York Mets written all over him. Other teams like the Rangers and perhaps the Cubs will enter the picture but I think the Mets will offer him the most money and win out..or lose out depending on how you view this signing.

5. A. J. Burnett-I've seen Burnett pitch many of times for the Blue Jays and the Marlins and have always come away impressed but when you look at his career stats they don't spit out the notion of top of the rotation money he will get this offseason. But as you know even good not great starting pitching is hard to find and Burnett should use a career year in Toronto last season and get a huge contract. His family lives in Maryland and he supposedly wants to be near them which would mean the Nationals, Orioles, and Phillies would be the most logical destinations for his services.

PREDICTION: The Baltimore Orioles need starting pitching in the worst way. Besides Jeremy Guthrie they have a bunch of unproven young starters and one who will never become proven because he is a head case(Daniel Cabrera). Despite the Orioles finishing last in the division they are a few players away from being serious contenders just like the Rays were this past season. They need starting pitching to get there and signing Burnett might not be the wisest decision the franchise can make but they really can't afford to alienate a loyal fanbase that begs for a winner.

6. Derek Lowe-Again good starting pitching is hard to find and Derek Lowe is one of the most consistent starters in the game. He is getting up there in age(36) but he isn't an overpowering pitcher who relies on heat to get hitters out. He never really lived up to the contract the Dodgers gave him coming out of Boston so don't expect him to resign but I could see a team who didn't make the playoffs last season willing to overpay for his services because they think they are one starter away from being a playoff contender.

PREDICTION: A lot of people have him pencilled in for the Yankees starting rotation but I'm not one of them. I think the Detroit Tigers are going to come out and offer him a generous contract and give him a chance to come back closer to home and he will accept the deal as long as it is competitive to what the Yankees and Mets offer him.

7. Ben Sheets-If he didn't have so many damn injuries we might be talking about the best starting pitcher in the game right here. Personally I'm a huge fan of Sheets. His stuff is awesome and when he is healthy he is one of the toughest pitchers in the game. With the right franchise he could win 18 plus games. I might be letting my bias towards him jade my view but I think who ever signs him will be getting a bargain despite the elbow problem.

PREDICTION: The Houston Astros seems like the most logical but don't be surprised if the Atlanta Braves make a run at it even if they land Peavy. His health issues will limit the contract offer to 2-3 years max.

8. Ryan Dempster-Dempster had a career year last season with the Cubs and appears to be ready to hit the open market with a huge check waiting for him. The only problem is he wants to stay in Chicago and the Cubs appear to want him back.

PREDICTION: The Chicago Cubs resign him to a 3-4 year contract worth over $50 million.

9. Orlando Hudson-A gold glove winner at 2b, Hudson has always been an underrated player in my book. I guess because he plays second base and doesn't steal any bases is why people tend to overlook him. He gets the job done at the plate though and gets on base and his career numbers indicate he gets better every season. He is currently in his prime and should get a good offer.

PREDICTION: The St. Louis Cardinals need a second baseman and Hudson would be the perfect fit in their lineup.

10. Adam Dunn-He is a cleanup hitter who has hit at least 40 homeruns a season the last 5 years. He of course strikes out a ton and plays horrible defense in left field but his on base percentage is around 40% every season. I'm not an Adam Dunn fan but I can see why some people and/or clubs like him because of his power and his ability to get on base.

PREDICTION: The Washington Nationals needs a cleanup hitter bad and someone to boo for the next 5 years. Dunn makes sense in the Capitol.

Is there anybody I left off the list that I shouldn't have? Well then let me know by voicing your opinion on the comments section.