Baseball Toaster Bad Altitude
The Surge Is Working
2008-06-15 17:00
by Mark T.R. Donohue

The Rockies won two low-scoring games in a row in Chicago, shutting out the White Sox 2-0 yesterday and triumphing 5-3 this afternoon to give Aaron Cook his tenth win. Colorado has won eight of its last eleven. That's the good news. The bad news is they're still 13 games under .500.

I know we're trying to turn over a leaf and be positive here, but I think that every point I ever had to make about Willy Taveras was made by his performance in the game Saturday. Taveras stole five bases -- and scored zero runs.

Jorge De La Rosa has been my go-to whipping boy this year whenever I'm discussing how the Rockies management team cheaped out on improving the pitching during the offseason. So it was astonishing to see that De La Rosa didn't allow a run in his start yesterday. Even for five innings, that's way more than we had any right to expect. The real pitching diadem in the Rockies' tiara, as we've discussed, is Cook, who has double-digit wins well in advance of the All-Star break. The franchise record is 17, shared by the unforgettable duo of Kevin Ritz and Pedro Astacio.

I'm not focusing very much on baseball right now because the NBA Finals have utterly delivered on the classic matchup the teams involved suggested. I guess I was way off with my pick of Lakers in 5, but I didn't expect Pau Gasol and Lamar Odom to break and for Ray Allen to spring back to life. I guess Allen's resurrection shouldn't have come as so much of a surprise; the man did play Jesus. The moment in the series that I'll always remember is down the stretch in Game 4 when the Celtics were trying to make their miracle comeback stick and Kevin Garnett went right down into the post and made a little jump hook just like it was the first quarter. Garnett has been passing up that shot in the fourth his whole career. It's exciting now that the ultimate goal is within his reach he's doing what needs to be done to take that last little incomplete space on his Hall of Fame resumé and fill it in.

Maybe I am jumping the gun rewarding the series to Boston before the game tonight, but I think that this Lakers team was exposed Thursday night. They don't have the fight in them, and it's not hard to guess why. Who would want to play behind Kobe Bryant? Kobe's attitude and body language could not make it any clearer that he feels like everyone else on the team is garbage. Bryant makes me angrier than almost any other pro athlete today. How can anyone be that gifted and yet be so completely unappreciative of it? Michael Jordan, Tim Duncan, even Shaq in his own way, understood that their talents put an obligation upon them to become great teammates and all-around players. Kobe is the opposite. He feels like because he's so good, the world owes him everything he wants. What a loser. If I was on his team I wouldn't hustle on defense either.

2008-06-16 14:08:01
1.   billywingard
Mark Donohue is wrong about Willy Taveras. Wow; talk about being stuck in a rut. Willy's batting slump pales in comparison to Mark's perpetual hang-up with Willie. Give us all a break. What about the record that he set with the Astros for hits three seasons ago. Garner said that Willy was the most exciting batter in baseball. No one in baseball is as fast. If the Astros get him back they can have the same set up at the top that the Rockies had last year with Berkman backing them up. The people in Houston loved him. Mark needs to learn what a "spark plug" is and why they are important for a team. Go WillY! Your slump is over.

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