Eagles Sign Mike Vick.

Does Vick Still Rock his Khakis with a Cuff and a Crease?

Does Vick Still Rock his Khakis with a Cuff and a Crease?

I don’t know that I’ve ever been more surprised about a move a Philadelphia team has made.  Bringing in Michael Vick doesn’t seem like an Eagles move, an Andy Reid move, it just doesn’t really fit.  Vick’s signing will probably drive a stake through the heart of the fan base.  In a couple hours I’ve heard cries of outrage from many Eagles fans.  They’re in disbelief, they’re angry, and some have even threatened to start rooting for another team.   That, of course, would be ridiculous.  Let’s take a look at this:

Anyone who has known me for more than five minutes is probably aware of the fact that I like dogs more than I like most people.  Dogs are pure.  They’re all heart, and the thought of running a dog fighting ring or syndicate, or whatever the bleep it is called…is sickening to me.  All that being said, though, if the Eagles bring someone in, it is almost impossible for me to root against them.  I don’t think Mike Vick is a good person, I don’t look up to him, he’s not a role model, but I’m an Eagles fan.  If it comes down to it, and we need a play that Mike Vick can provide…I’m on board. 

What the guy did was terrible.  No one is arguing that, but it’s not my place to sentence him, or determine whether or not he should be able to play in the NFL.  That’s not my job.  He served his time in prison.  A relatively long sentence…think about Donte Stallworth doing a few weeks for killing a man with his car.  Vick didn’t get off scot free.  Again, it’s not about condoning his actions, but it’s about football. 

Another thing I’ve heard a million times already in the last couple hours are the T.O. comparisons.  I feel like there is no comparison.  T.O. was a proven bad teammate.  A trouble maker, a selfish guy who created problems, drew attention to himself…etc.  He also happens to be the best receiver the Eagles have had in decades, but that’s besides the point for now.  Vick has never been called a bad teammate.  What he does off the field may be appaling, but I don’t think he’s coming in here to make waves.  This guy is on his last chance.  If he doesn’t toe the line, and become a team guy his career is going to be over before it gets started again.  There is no T.O comparison, so just stop it. 

The Eagles take virtually no risk here.  The money is minimal.  Basically a little over a million for this year, and next season is a team option.  They’re not on the hook for anything.  Are we worried about what Don thinks?  Well, Don can get over it.  He got his extension.  If he’s worried about a guy behind him who has been in jail for a couple years, then we have a whole other set of problems.  The Eagles are a good enough team, and have a good enough leadership structure in place to handle Vick’s arrival.  If Don is going to make a problem out of it, then that’s an issue with Don, and not Vick.  

Vick may never score a touchdown in an Eagles uniform.  I don’t know what’s going to happen, but like I said if Donovan went down with an injury late in the season do you want Kevin Kolb coming in?  And, just stop with A.J. Feeley.  That guy is awful, you know it, I know it…he’s a backup’s backup.  At least Vick is someone you have to gameplan for.  The gameplan against Kolb would be sit back in a zone, and wait for him to throw picks. 

You don’t have to go out and buy a Vick jersey or anything like that, but maybe the guy deserves a shot.  You’re telling me it wouldn’t be interesting to see Vick get 6-8 touches a game?  The Eagles have some pretty creative offensive minds.  I think they can find a way to use him.  What defense in the league could handle some crazy formation with Westbrook, Maclin, Jackson, Curtis and Vick?  That’s a king’s ransom worth of speed and shiftiness. 

So, I’m not letting Mike Vick pet sit for me, and I’m not shaking his hand if we run into each other, but this is football…not life.  Maybe it’ll work out, and everyone who is spitting the hate, I don’t want to hear you coming around if Vick helps the Birds.  You’ve made your opinion clear.  And, if you want to go become a Giants fan or go root the Broncos because they have B-Dawk…you go right ahead.  Believe me, you won’t be missed. 

In actual  football, the Birds dropped a close one to the Pats in preseason action Thursday night.  Akers missed a field goal late that would have locked up a win…not that it really matters.  I was probably most impressed with the play of LeSean McCoy, who I think will be a real contributor right out of the gate.  Maclin showed some bursts, this RB Buckley looks like a tough kid, and other than that…we need some work on kick coverage, and what can you tell really from one preseason game.  No one broke their leg.  Good times.

Jennie Finch Is Hot (You know, like Angry)

I'm too Classy to Go for the Bikini Shot.

I'm too Classy to Go for the Bikini Shot.

 The only real news is that this afternoon is “Mother Lovin” Lee time.  That’s right, another day game.  I’m all over it today.  Cliff is going to try to finish off the sweep, and he probably will, because he’s Cliff “Mother Lovin” Lee.  I have Phillies 6, Cubs 1.  I’m not saying that’s going to be the final score, but it will probably be pretty close, because you know I got more skills than those cats that play the buckets on street corners. 

Oh, why did I post the picture of Jennie Finch?  Well, we have high olympic controversy today.  Apparently some committee or something recommended that Golf, and Rugby be made Olympic sports.  This left softball on the outside looking in.   Finch, who I guess is kind of the face of USA Softball, was crushed by the decision to leave out softball, and says the fight will continue.  I’m pretty sure she’s out of avenues.  Unless she gets the guys who dreamt up the UFL to hold a softball tournament the same week as the Olympics.  That might work.  It’ll be a shame to see softball go…the USA was a solid squad, and something about a chick throwing 70 mph underhand I just find fascinating.  That and the concept of a “rise ball”…total mindblowers.

Should golf be an olympic sport?  I’m going with…absolutely not.  The Olympics will never be the pinnacle of golf.  I know Tiger said he will play, and that is great that he’d choose to represent the USA, but he’s not going to be judging his season on the Olympics.  Also, would he change his tune if the Olympics got in the way of his preparations for one of the Majors?  I assume by 2016 he’ll be long past Jack…so maybe he won’t even care at that point. 

It just seems to me that the Olympic organizers are focusing on sports that will bring in the cash.  It’s not the good old days when a couple guys wrestle around, do a lap around a track, throw something…this is big business.  You basically bring a top-flight PGA Tour event to the Olympics, and that is going to create some revenue.  The softball tournament…does not I would imagine.  I assume the same thing could be said for Rugby.  The rugby obsessed countries of the World will drive that event to great successes I’m sure, and the IOC can afford to have the events that don’t bring in cash…I’m thinking speed walking? 

By the way, does the US even field a rugby squad?  Do we recruit from the club teams at the Ivy Leaguers safety schools?  I say go with  “Thanks but no thanks”…and wait for Futbol Americano. 

So, I feel badly for Jennie Finch, the Olympics probably was the peak of the softball World, where having golf in the Olympics will be just like tennis.  The top players will play, but it’s not going to be Wimbledon, or Augusta.  When I think of the Olympics I don’t think of things like golf.  I think of sports that we only care about once every four years, like swimming, or skiing, or the 100 meter, or gymnastics and figure skating.  That kind of nonsense. 

Long Live Softball.

Allenby/Mallinger, Others setting a Good Pace.

If Alvaro Quiros didn't hit it 100 yards past you, you'd make fun of his Hat.

If Alvaro Quiros didn't hit it 100 yards past you, you'd make fun of his Hat.

So, it looks like Hazeltine is settling in as a nice test.  The course is extremely long, but providing plenty of birdie opportunites early on.  Robert Allenby (pegged by BK), and John Mallinger have it at 3-under for the early lead, but there are large groups of players at 1 and 2-under as well. 

One of the players at 2-under is the freakishly long Alvaro Quiros. Quiros has won 3 times on the European Tour, but we haven’t seen much of him in the states.  He’s had no real success in his major forays to this point, notably being less than high on his own chances at the Masters.  All anyone seems to be able to talk about is the Spainard’s length, but he’s got to have to some complimentary shots to reach this level.  Quiros is playing with Fred today…in the group behind Tiger, and some of his shots have already garnered “he hit it where” looks from TW and Paddy.  The guy’s played 5 holes so I’m not going to go too crazy here, but if someone was ever going to repeat a John Daly ’91, it’s going to be Quiros. 

Oh, how’s Fred doing?  He’s on the par train.  Thanks for asking. 

Tiger looks really solid.  He’s hitting fairways, and appears to be on the verge of getting it to 2-under himself.  This isn’t good news for the rest of the field.  I haven’t seen him spray one right yet today, or hit any loose irons really.  He birdied the 500+ yard par four 12th, and just added a birdie at 15.  Among the couple dozen players under par early there are plenty of big names.  Rory McIlroy started well, Camillo is 2-under as well. 

On the other end of the spectrum we have Justin Rose and Nick Watney…two young talents who have started poorly, both sitting at 3-over. 

PS…shifty Paul Goydos just hit 3-under as well.

4.5 Man Rotation?

Pedro Didn't Handle the Cubs as Well as he Handled Zimmer.

Pedro Didn't Handle the Cubs as Well as he Handled Zimmer.

The Phillies offense took most of the drama out of Pedro Martinez’s Philly debut.  They jumped all over Jeff Samardjiza, piling on runs until they had a 12-1 lead through four and half innings.  Rollins, Victorino and Ibanez all homered in what became a barrage of extra base hits.  It was Jamie Moyer run support for his spot in the rotation, and probably any Phillies pitcher at any level could have managed a win Wednesday night.  Pedro essentially did what he needed to do to win, but let’s hope that when he has to do a little more that he is able. 

The good news was that he threw 99 pitches.  The bad news was that it came in only five innings.  It was nice to see him get it up there in the low nineties, but his command still lacked a little sharpness.  The Cubs hit some balls hard, and he worked out a jam in the fifth giving up only a couple runs, but he’s not going to get 12 runs of support every time out.  I was almost expecting the Phils to pull Pedro, and save him for another day.  Throw Moyer out there in the reverse mop up role.  Disheartened?  Go pitch a few innings grandpa. 

In every outing Pedro’s had this season, major or minor league he has begun to get hit a little bit in the fourth, fifth, sixth inning.  I’m not sure if this is because he is tiring, or if the opposing hitters are getting a better feel the more times they go through the line up.  It was G&T Wednesday, and I was actually driving home during the bottom of the fifth, but it sounded like Pedro lost his command more than anything else.  He knows how to pitch, he knows how to get people out, but so does Moyer.  He still has to execute a little better.  Not a bad debut, but plenty of room to improve for old Petey.  The better news was the offense showed some real life, at least for 5 innings.