Baseball Toaster Bad Altitude
Three Quick Thoughts in Descending Order According to Relevance
2007-02-27 11:37
by Mark T.R. Donohue

1) I read today in the Colorado Daily that Alan Roach, who has been the Rockies' PA announcer since their inaugural season in 1993, is retiring. In his honor, for the rest of the year whenever we discuss Brad Hawpe, let us say his name in the manner Roach did. For some reason Roach, who extended out every other Colorado player's name in the traditionally dramatic stadium announcer manner ("shortstop Cliiiiint Barrrr-MEZZZZZZZZZZZ!"), was tickled by the economy of Hawpe's moniker and always tried to get it out as fast as possible. The trick is to make it sound like more than one syllable and less than two. "Bru(dd)p!"

2) It's an absolute travesty that Ron Santo has been left out in the cold by the Hall of Fame voters again. They should all be fired, or at least prohibited from profiting from the autograph show opportunities they so greedily protect, for repeatedly breaking the heart of one of the great living figures in the game. And one of the best third basemen who ever played, let's not forget.

3) It was trying watching the Chicago Bulls get taken to school by Darko Milicic and the Orlando Magic last night, the team's complete and utter lack of a post game being made miserably clear just days after the trade deadline came and went with Chicago doing nothing to address their obvious area of need. However, I wouldn't have traded Luol Deng, Tyrus Thomas, P.J. Brown, and the Knicks' #1 pick for Pau Gasol either. I'm not unconvinced that Deng isn't the best player in that deal right now and he definitely has the most upside going forward, with due respect to the staggering and completely unfinished skill set of Thomas. A lot of writers from Chicago and otherwise have ripped the Bulls for not pulling the trigger, but I don't think the difference between making the NBA Finals and losing (which would be no guarantee with Gasol on board and isn't impossible with the roster as presently constructed, assuming Andres Nocioni gets fully healthy in time for the playoffs) and making a second- or third-round exit is as big as they assume. The four or five best teams in the league are all in the West this year and I don't buy into the theory that whomever survives the rugged Western Conference playoffs will be weakened for the Finals. Dallas, San Antonio, Phoenix, or even Houston or Utah operating at 80% would still whip the Pistons, Bulls, Cavs, Wizards or whomever manages to claim the Eastern Conference title and booby prize. The Bulls are better off staying young in a conference that doesn't have many teams on the rise past Orlando and Toronto, who have only emerged ahead of schedule thanks to a historically bad Atlantic Division.

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