The ties that bind ….
The toil and troubles we create and then seek to blame others for the mess created. In the world of baseball , the game`s hierarchy is now seeking to prove to the fans that they can be proactive in dealing with steroid cheats . Meanwhile, the NFL, the commissioner , Roger Goodell continues to act like a buffoon, while team owners continue to sit quietly, as players simply run amok. That being said , it is to be expected when the two unions in question the MLBPA and NFLPA are powerful enough to make the respective hierarchies in question , simply quiver in their boots .
Much of this NFL off-season has been encapsulated by the events in New England , with the arrest of Aaron Hernandez of the New England Patriots . With no exact timetable set for the player`s murder trial, . he remains incarcerated , without bail and having not spoken to law enforcement in any great detail, as to the allegations of he and his two accomplices and their implication in the death of former associate Odin Lloyd . With Patriots` owner Bob Kraft and head coach Bill Belichick offering the family of the victim , their condolences as well as stating that this was a tragedy that could not have been foreseen . I would like to know what was it , that could not be foreseen as it related to the behavior of Hernandez, when it was widely known that the player had serious behavioral issues whilst in college, as well as a juvenile ? Furthermore, with the NFL hierarchy now suggesting that they will now conduct far more wide-reaching research into the backgrounds of the players drafted each season . It also begs the question, what were they actually doing prior?
The NFL pre-season is now merely less than a week away and a number of players will start their seasons in a new environment and with their new teammates. Before the actual seismic eruption within the Patriots` organization , the big story was the acquisition of free agent quarterback Tim Tebow . The fact that Bill Belichick has sought to take a flier on the player, either has more do with the coach’s ego or the fact that he truly believes that he can make a successful reclamation project out of the now infamous player. And as much as Tebow is beloved by fans and the public alike , I truly believe that this season with the Patriots will be nothing more than mere titillation, without anything of note being achieved by Tebow on the field of play.
Last season for the New York Jets can be best described as comedic in its tragedy and the very fact that Rex Ryan was lucky enough not to join the list of coaches fired at the end of the regular season . Poor 2012 performances , poor coaching and lack of leadership , all played a part in the Jets` downfall . Quarterback Mark Sanchez has now gone from being the face of the franchise to the now down on his luck and a besieged player with a great deal to prove not just in the pre-season , but most definitely in the regular season , as well. After a lackluster year in 2012 , with a string of woefully inept performances . It easy to understand why GM John Idzik took it upon himself to draft a quarterback , as well as revamping the roster from last season. If nothing else, turning over to a new page and chapter , is perhaps the best way forward for this beleaguered franchise .
For rookie quarterback Geno Smith , his being drafted by the Jets did not exactly come as a complete surprise, but what was undeniable was the player`s lack of maturity and due reverence shown for the whole draft process . Granted , Smith would then seek to defer that melodrama, by stating that his presence was not required after the first round process . Then again , the player , one of a slew of high-profiled athletes signed to the sports` management agency of rapper and entrepreneur ,Jay-z , has single-handedly gotten off to a bad start within the industry . Roc Nation Sports in conjunction with CAA Sports will now have a presence within the NBA , WNBA , MLB and the NFL . The company founder also found himself in a great deal of hot water, when it was noted that he had yet to be certified as a licensed agent by both the NFL , MLB and NBA. Yet , this is now the type damn incompetency being repeatedly being shown on an annual basis by the hierarchies in question. There are those who see these issues as being rather minor . With the matter now resolved , concerning Jay-z`s certification , it will be interesting to see the growing appetite of the entrepreneur and his agency.
Geno Smith for his part , will have a great deal to prove and with their being a growing call for the young rookie to be the starter for the Jets` regular season opener at home against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers , rather than fans having to endure and witness the problems that repeatedly beset Mark Sanchez in 2012. It must be said, that Rex Ryan and John Idzik on the face of it , may well have a tough decision to make .
This season I believe, as it relates the fortunes of the New York Jets , will be predicated on the play of Sanchez and whether or not he can overcome is foibles of last season. Their division, AFC East could very well be up for grabs, with all four teams now in transition , vying for divisional supremacy , and no clear and distinct favorite to be spoken of. This much we were certain of , before the off the field problems of the New England Patriots hit the headlines. One might easily have suggested that they would once again have the division to themselves and with everything at their beckoning . With the upheaval from within and no apparent certainty of what the fans should expect , we could very well be in for one or two surprises, in determining the likelihood as to whether or they can make a successful defense of their divisional title . Or perhaps we could very well see the most unlikeliest of challenges coming from either the Jets , Buffalo Bills or the Miami Dolphins ?
Though his figures are not all consuming , for James Loney of the Tampa Bay Rays (62-43) , this might well be looked upon as his most productive season from a team a standpoint . Loney , along with the pitcher Matt Moore , are two of the reasons why the team has been able to keep abreast with the Boston Red Sox (63-43) and Baltimore Orioles within the AL East for much of this season . Six weeks ago , I would have been one of the first to suggest that their season might well have been over . Yet the guile, with which Joe Maddon and his staff have kept the Rays relevant and their recent run of having won twenty of twenty-tree games , has put the ball-club of not just contesting the division, but also for an AL wild-card berth .
Having taken two out of the three games recently played at Yankees Stadium against a beleaguered New Yankees` team. It must be said Tampa`s fate now rests in their very own hands . No excuses can now be made at this juncture , as to any reason why the organization cannot seek to win their second divisional title over the course of their history . The fans now seem to willing the layers on , and they are now answering those calls with their play . Pitching and defense have always been the cornerstone behind the Rays success and this season is proving to be not different .
Monday, pits the Rays against divisional rivals the Boston Red Sox , in a game to be played at Fenway Park Boston , Massachusetts. With only a half game separating the two teams at the top of the division, both ball-clubs are fully aware how pivotal and meaningful this contest is likely to be . Taking the mound for the Red Sox will be Felix Doubront(7-4, 3.78 ERA) against David Price (5-5, 3.75 ERA) .
Perhaps I am mistaken , but I was always under the impression the reason behind having a coach or manager was one of instilling into the players a love of the game as well as preparing the for the day-to-day rigors of an elongated season . Also the expectations are , that the coaches and coaching staff will be able to impart their wisdom unto the younger and less experienced players on a roster . If the allegations are to be believed , then recent incidents between Miami Marlins` hitting instructor and batting coach Tino Martinez are to be believed . Then the former Yankees first baseman`s behavior was reprehensible and beyond disgusting. Martinez is said to have lost his temper,physically and verbally assaulted several of the younger players on the team on more than one occasion .
In light of that fact , manager Mike Redmond , GM Michael Hill and team owner Jeffrey Loria , are all said to have wanted the coach to remain within the organization . It was only after the players made their views public on the matter , Martinez offered his resignation to the organization and then issued a public apology to the players and fans alike . If it took Tino Martinez over a month to take this action , to my mind, it simply showed a complete lack of respect for the players under his tutelage . Also , what should the fans and public alike make of a situation, where the front office and manager collectively , stand behind the coach after such disdainful behavior ? Then again , the Marlins are going through a pitiful season where absolutely noting has gone right for a ball-club, where their competitive level is at an all-time low, as well as possessing one of the worst records in the Majors (MLB).
Picture gallery .
At a time when the image of baseball is said to be in tatters and with Bud Selig and the league hierarchy commanding about as much respect as one might hold for a current seated member of Congress . Is it any wonder why the fans and public alike, no longer have any faith or respect for the game`s leading officials , never mind the very fact that the players themselves lack any integrity whatsoever ? By all means, chime in with your thoughts on this and anything else you believe pertinent to the subject matter as you deem fit .
Picture and sideshow details below .
(1) New York Jets coach Rex Ryan speaks to the media at their NFL football training camp Monday, July 29, 2013, in Cortland, N.Y. The beleaguered head coach will be under a great deal of pressure to succeed this season. AP Photo/Bill Kostroun …
(2) New York Jets quarterback Geno Smith throws a pass at their NFL football training camp Monday, July 29, 2013, in Cortland, N.Y. AP Photo/Bill Kostroun …
(3) Tampa Bay Rays’ James Loney follows through on a three-run home run off of New York Yankees relief pitcher Adam Warren in the seventh inning of a baseball game at Yankee Stadium on Friday, July 26, 2013, in New York. AP Photo/Kathy Kmonicek …
(4) Miami Marlins hitting coach Tino Martinez looks from the dugout during a baseball game against the Pittsburgh Pirates in Miami, Sunday, July 28, 2013. Martinez has resigned after players complained he verbally abused them. AP Photo/Alan Diaz …