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Friday, August 22, 2008

Pleasant Distraction

The riveting run of Team USA in Commiejing is coming to an end. The only really compelling event remaining is the "Redeem Team" (edit: I hate that name, it sounds stupid) going to Gold. Phelps' run is complete (and still damn amazing), the gymnasts medaled all over the place, beach volleyball took Gold in mens and womens for the first time ever at the same games. The closing ceremonies are Sunday. USA will likely celebrate it's "win" in the medal standings (whatever that means) and we will be forced to go back to watching our normal sports.

That's where the trouble comes in. We're left with a week of braves (they get lowercase letters for the rest of the season if I can remember to do so) before college football starts up (and even then it's only non-compelling blowouts for the first two weeks). Really we are 2-3 weeks away from anything worth getting excited about and that is boring. But since I still have sports on my brain, here are a few thoughts for the next couple of weeks:

The braves should rest Jurrjens the rest of the season. He's never pitched this many innings and there is no reason to wear his arm down now. He's a good pitcher now and could be a great one in 2 years. Let's not ruin that.

Similarly, bring up prospects like Anderson (riding a 26 game hit streak), Hanson, B. Jones, even Schafer. These guys need to get a feel for the league and there's no better way to do that than in low pressure situations. And they can't be worse in the field than Infante was in left last night.

I like the decision to give Matt Ryan plenty of time. He's not the typical rookie QB that will be phased by a weak O-Line and a steady stream of defenders in his face. He got used to that at BC.

I wish the Falcons would give Shockley some time with the 1st or 2nd string offense in a game. He's on the edge of the roster because he's behind the worst 3rd stringers in the league while Harrington and Redman get the benefit of having at least NFL level bench players around them.

While losing your left tackle like UGA did with Sturdivant stinks, I'd much rather lose him pre-season than mid-season. It's a lot easier for the coaches to adjust and get people in positions to succeed if you have a game or two to work the kinks out.

The buzz around Stafford is that he may go pro after this season. I doubt that. By coincidence I ate dinner across from him this week and he seems to enjoy the low-key life and relaxing with his friends. Some people have an air of superiority and you can just tell they want to move on. He just seemed like a good old boy happy to be hanging out with his friends. I may just be overly optimistic.

Relatedly, our waitress was an idiot. Besides screwing up our order twice, she (while being a college student and waitress in Athens) had no idea she was waiting on Matt Stafford. After he left she commented "Oh my God! Do you know I just served the #1 QB in the nation." My first thought was to discuss whether or not he is the #1 QB, but my second was to hit her on the head with a pizza box. I went with neither. Occasionally, I'm kind.

It's too early and the anger still too recent to talk about the Hawks.

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