Tag Archives: NFL

Ex-Yankee Dineen dead at 63

You have to be a really good Yankees’ fan to remember Kerry Dineen. He was one of those players who had a “cup of tea” in the majors. I remember Dineen, though.

In 1975, while playing at Shea while Yankee Stadium was being renovated, the Yankees’ outfielders had trouble with Shea’s outfield, and eventually Roy White, Bobby Bonds and Elliott Maddox all came up with knee injuries. Maddox missed about 100 games that season and never was the same after hitting .303 and (according to WAR, Wins Above Replacement) being the Yanks best player in 1974.

On top of those injuries, Lou Piniella had an inner ear infection which affected his balance and he wound up hitting .196 that season. He missed about half the year.

Things were so bad that I remember a game in which Ed Herrmann was catching, and the corner outfielders were Thurman Munson and Rick Dempsey.

Between them, in CF, was a slight rookie OF named Kerry Dineen. Dineen had no power, and in seven games for the Yanks in 1975, went 8 for 22 with a double and an RBI.

The next season he played in four games for the Yanks, going 2 for 7, both singles, with an RBI. He was out of the majors in 1977 and resurfaced with the 1978 Phillies, for whom he went 2 for 8, 1 double, in five games.

For his MLB career, he played in just 16 games, going 12 for 37 (.324) with 2 doubles and 2 RBI.

Dineen passed away about two months ago at the age of 63.

You may ask how or why I remember him. Probably because of that strange day when two top catchers (Munson and Dempsey) had to play LF and RF while a third catcher, Ed Herrmann, was behind the plate, and with Munson and Dempsey in the outfield, the trivia question would be “who was playing CF between Munson and Dempsey?”.

Well, Conference Championship Sunday is set. Brady/Manning again in the AFC. My Steelers put up a good fight without Williams or Brown and an injured Big Ben (and if you recall, Bell and Pouncey were lost very early on in the preseason and regular season). Brown’s absence wasn’t only felt in the receiving aspect of the game, but also in the punt return aspect also. I can’t stand the Patriots, and the thought of Denver in the Super Bowl fills me with dread. I mean, outside of the two Super Bowls Elway won at the end of his career (Thank You, Terrell Davis), the Broncos history in the big game is one of being blown out (43-8, 55-10, 42-10, 39-20….). Not looking forward to another one of those.

One heck of an ending to Arizona/Green Bay this weekend, now Arizona travels to Carolina. I’ll probably be rooting for the winner of this game to win it all. The Cardinals have only won one title—in 1947 when they beat the Eagles for the NFL title. Oh yeah, the Cardinals were the CHICAGO Cardinals at that time.

Irvin, NFL news….

Hall 0f Famer Monte Irvin passed away at the age of 96. Irvin couldn’t break into the majors until the age of 30 in 1949 but was, for a while, considered to maybe be what Jackie Robinson was—the man to break the color barrier.

Because of his late start, most of Irvin’s accomplishments came in the Negro Leagues, but in 1951, Irvin finished 3rd in the MVP balloting after a season where he hit .312-24-121 (leading the NL in RBI) and helped to lead the NY Giants to their improbable come from behind pennant.

Irvin had an excellent WS against the Yanks in the Giants’ loss to the Bronx Bombers. He went 11 for 24 (.458) with two RBI and even stole home in Game 1.

He was an All-Star for the only time in 1952 and finished 31st in MVP voting despite playing just 46 games because of a broken ankle.

He hit .329-21-97 in 1953, finishing 15th in the MVP voting and was a member of the 1954 WS Champion NY Giants, going 2 for 9 in that WS—the last WS Champion NY Giant team.

He played for the Giants from 1949-1955 and finished his career with the Cubs in 1956.  He hit .293 with an OPS+ of  125 in his shortened career.

After his career ended, Irvin worked in baseball for many years in the commissioners’ office.

Big news in the NFL. The St. Louis Rams are headed backed to LA, where they played from 1946-1994 (winning the NFL title in 1951 and losing Super Bowl XIV), and the San Diego Chargers may follow. The Chargers started out in the AFL in Los Angeles, playing there in 1960 before moving to San Diego. The 1960 Los Angeles Chargers lost the AFL title game to the Houston Oilers, 24-16.

The Rams are moving to LA next year, to play in the LA Coliseum. A new stadium is expected to be ready for 2019. I don’t know where they would play in 2017 and 2018, I’ll have to check.  The Chargers may move in 2017, if a lease agreement can be worked out with the Rams. If one can’t be worked out, then the Raiders may move from Oakland to LA, where they played from 1982-1994, winning Super Bowl XVIII.

Meanwhile, the playoffs are going on, and last week saw a couple of doozies. KC beat Houston 30-0 and Green Bay knocked out Washington 35-18 but it was the other two, the way they finished, that was shocking.

Minnesota missed a chippy 27 yd. FG at the end of the game to lose 10-9 to Seattle. The game was played in sub-zero degree weather.

Pittsburgh blew a 15-0 lead they had entering the fourth quarter, and had their QB hurt. They had to go with their 3rd and 4th string RBs in the game. With 1:50 left, Cincinnati, who had not won a playoff game since 1990, took a 16-15 lead. Pittsburgh’s backup QB threw a pick, and Cincy had the ball in Steelers’ territory, only to fumble the ball back with 1:23 left. Back onto the field came Steelers’ QB Ben Roethlisberger, who was injured. We now know he suffered a sprained AC and torn ligaments in his throwing shoulder due to a sack and dirty play (knee to the shoulder after the sack) by a Cincy LB. He couldn’t throw long but got the ball to midfield with 22 seconds left. Then Cincy got called for back to back 15 yd. personal foul penalties, one on a dirty hit by the same LB, to move the ball forward 30 yards and Pittsburgh hit the 35 yd. FG to win the game 18-16.

The behavior of both teams in the game as well as fans was disgraceful (and I am saying that as a Steelers fan who is happy Pittsburgh won, but who is not happy with the actions of coaches Munchak and Porter, even though what Porter did may have affected the outcome of the game).

So Pittsburgh at Denver in the next round, but with a RB (Williams), QB (Big Ben) and WR (Brown) all questionable.

KC at New England. Seattle at 15-1 Carolina. Green Bay at Arizona.

Lastly a minor Yankees trade regarding minor leaguers. You can check it out here on Lohud’s link.

http://yankees.lhblogs.com/2016/01/12/yankees-fill-40-man-trade-lhp-tyler-olson-inf-ronald-torreyes/

 

 

Seattle blows SB 49, 28-24.

Yes, as I mentioned before, I hate the Roman Numerals. And sorry, Patriots fans, but Seattle blew it more than the Patriots won it. I mean, 27 seconds left, you are one yard away from a SB winning touchdown and you have a beast in the backfield along the likes of a Jim Brown, Jim Taylor, Larry Csonka, Emmitt Smith, Franco Harris, John Riggins,…. you get the drift. And you THROW the ball? Really? The late Ohio State coach Woody Hayes said that three things can happen when you throw the ball, and two of them are bad. And one of the bad things happened. New England picked off the pass to preserve their 28-24 come from behind lead and win the game. The Patriots were down 24-14 at one point. But Marshawn Lynch is in your backfield, you have 2nd and goal from the one. There are three things you CANNOT do. Fumble the ball away is one, get picked off is another (the third is to get hit with a penalty, making Lynch’s job harder). But you have one of the best backs in the game, an absolute bruiser who, with 27 seconds left and your team still owning a couple of time outs, you don’t just give him the ball three times to get 36 inches? Really? The Seahawks benefitted just moments before from what looked at the time to be deja vu. David Tyree part 2 if you will. An unbelievable catch to set up Seattle to win the game in the closing seconds. Then Seattle just gave the game away. More games are lost by the losing team than won by the winners. Here is Case #1. Unbe-friggin-lievable. Pete Carroll and his offensive assistants, and some players, better buy a lot of Sominex, for there will be plenty of sleepless nights ahead. For Brady, his 3rd MVP, tying Montana. For Belichick, his 4th SB win, tying Chuck Noll. Brady ties Bradshaw with 4 SB wins. For Seattle, a whole offseason of wanting a do-over of the stupidest call in SB history.

Nats land Scherzer. Super Bowl set.

Max Scherzer goes to the Nats, $210MM over 7 years, with 1/2 deferred. So $15MM over 14 years. I don’t know about paying someone $15MM between the ages of 37-44, esp. when they are a) washed up b) declining severely and/or c) injured. Not to mention d) retired.

The Yanks said they were not in for Scherzer or Shields, and some but not all, believed them. Maybe with Scherzer off the market, it can be believed now (Shields is still available). It seems last year’s big splash took them out of the market for any big splash (just little splashes–see Headley, Drew….) this year.

That said, there are a lot of free agent pitchers available next year. See this post

http://bronxbaseballdaily.com/2015/01/top-9-pitchers-yankees-can-sign-in-2016/

from our friends at Bronx Baseball Daily to see who may fit the Yanks needs in next year’s free agent draft. The problem is, who comes off the books? McCann has four years left on his deal, A-Rod three, Teix, CC and Beltran a couple. Then you have in-their-prime players like Ellsbury and Tanaka signed to multi-year deals. Even Headley has a four-year deal. Hal doesn’t want to increase the payroll, and there is little flexibility as long as those multi-year deals, especially the ones for aging, fading players, are on the books.

The Yanks did look at Johan Santana, a low-risk, high-reward option. I doubt anything will come out of it. I hope not.  Santana was pitching in the Venezuelan league in hoping for a comeback. Reports have it he was at 86-89 and pitching more on guile than anything else. Santana has missed all of 2011, 2013 and 2014. In his only season since 2010, Johan was 6-9, 4.85 in 2012 (with a tainted no-hitter, the only one in Mets’ history). ERA+ 79. He’s had two shoulder surgeries and turns 36 in March. Minor league deal with incentives? Maybe. But I wouldn’t expect much out of it. Santana had a nice career, not HOF, and it’s a shame his career came to an end basically at the age of 31. 2 CYA, 6x consideration, and 2x in the top 10 for the MVP award. 139-78, 3.20, ERA+ 136. Once great. Now?

I am heading up to the Stadium on May 24th. Hmmmm….. that’s about 1/3 of the way through the season, and A-Rod is 6 HR away from tying Willie Mays at 660. You can do the math. At 18-21 HR/yr. (how much does he have left, if anything?) that could be about the time A-Rod ties or passes Willie. If he does it in front of me, #660* or #661*, I won’t be applauding.

Not much else in Yankeeland right now. That, and busy at work, have me writing less.

The Super Bowl is set. The defending champion Seattle Seahawks vs. the New England Patriots. Interesting games yesterday on Championship Sunday. The Seahawks were outplayed by the Green Bay Packers for 57 1/2 minutes, and the Pack had a 19-7 lead with three minutes to go. TD Seattle with 2:09 left to make it 19-14. Recovery of an onside kick. TD. 2-point conversion to put Seattle up 22-19. Green Bay comes back to tie it on a last-second 48-yd. FG. 22-22. Seattle gets the opening kickoff of OT and scores to win 28-22. What a finish. What a choke by the Pack.

It was the fourth OT NFC title game in the last eight years.

In the AFC, no contest. New England wins 45-7 over the Colts. It’ll be SB #6 for the Belichick/Brady duo. Now the authors of “spygate,” Belichick and the Patriots, are being investigated for deflated footballs. Whatever. They still dominated and will be hard to stop.

It’s a pick ’em right now after the line opened at Seattle by 2 1/2.

So does Seattle repeat for the first time since New England did it a decade ago, or do the Patriots add to their legacy?

 

Yankees make incremental move.

You remember when, in playing SCAT, the card game, that you would put down a 3 of hearts and pick up a 5 of hearts because it gave you more points? (Especially if you already held the Ace and King of Hearts?)

That is kind of like the move the Yankees did yesterday. They picked up Chris Martin for cash from Colorado. Martin is a RHP, and a project. He did make the majors last season, and went 0-0, 6.89 in 16 games. 15 2/3 IP, 14 K. He is 6’8″, a big boy, and 28 years old.

In picking him up, they DFA’d Gonzalez German, a 27-year-old RHP, who they got from the Mets for cash just last month. German was 0-0, 4.75 for the Mets in 2014 in 25 games, 31 K in 30 1/3 IP.

Apparently the Yanks felt that Martin is, or has to potential to be, an incremental upgrade over Germen. We’ll see. It doesn’t appear like a major move or upgrade, but…. see the SCAT reference above.

The Yanks finalized their coaching staff. The hitting coach will be Jeff Pentland, who will have Alan Cockrell as the asst. hitting coach. Joe Espada (3b/infield). Tony Pena moves to 1b Coach and Rob Thomson becomes the bench coach. Larry Rothschild is the pitching coach and Gary Tuck the BP coach.

One thing I’ve pointed out elsewhere. Some people wanted a former major leaguer to be a coach. Sometimes it works. But coaches have to teach and just because someone was talented themselves doesn’t mean they can teach. Charlie Lau was a great hitting coach who was a .255 hitting catcher. Meanwhile, Ted Williams was the manager of the 1972 Texas Rangers who only hit .217 as a team.

So the #4 seed won the national championship? What’s scary is that Urban Meyer thought next year would be the time. A lot of sophs and juniors here. Ohio St. and TCU (who finished #3) are on top of a lot of lists right now for the best of next year.

Championship Sunday is set. AFC: Colts @ Patriots (the 4th straight AFC title game for New England), and NFC: Green Bay @ Seattle. Both home teams are favored by about 7.

 

Four-time SB winning coach Noll dies at 82.

I happen to be a fan of the Pittsburgh Steelers, and today is a bit of a sad day.

Chuck Noll, the only coach to win four Super Bowls, died yesterday, June 13, at the age of 82.

Noll coached the Steelers from 1969-1991, going 209-156-1 (of which 16-8 were in the postseason). He coached the Steelers to four SB victories in six years, winning Super Bowls IX, X, XIII and XIV.

He was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1993.

Before his coaching career (assistant and head coach) began, Noll played for the Cleveland Browns from 1953-1959. Those Browns’ teams won NFL titles in 1954 and 1955, and lost the NFL title game in 1953 and 1957.

SB 48 a blowout

From the first snap, the Super Bowl was a blowout. That first snap sailed over Peyton Manning’s head and resulted in a safety.

It was all downhill from there for Denver. Seattle won SB 48, 43-8.

It was basically over before halftime. One lousy game if you weren’t rooting for Seattle.

The weather held up as the NFL lucked out. Some 6-9″ of snow started falling less than 12 hours after the game ended.