July 29, 2014

Da Clip Show: Keeping an Eye on the Tribe’s AAA Squad – 5/31/2011

Clip Show aims to be your weekly update for all things Columbus Clippers. Check back each Tuesday afternoon for team records, roster updates, and performance updates on some of the brightest prospects in the Tribe system.
First and foremost, my apologies. There was no Clip Show last week, and the reason for that is a bit embarrassing. It seems your trusty Clip Show reporter managed to break his right leg in a couple of places, and last Tuesday was spent shuttling around Columbus to various doctors’ offices. Wednesday involved leg surgery, and the recovery from that has keep said reporter in a state of bed-riddenness for the past week. So, don’t think too badly of me for not getting back to this until today. If it’s any consolation, I’m forced to write this week’s update from a fully-reclined-with-my-leg-elevated position, which sucks if you’re scoring at home. OK, on to the baseball. The Clippers rebounded from a mini-swoon–and another crazed roster flux–to right the ship and get back onto the winning path, blazing their way 3.5 game lead for overall best record in the IL.

Two Weeks: 9-4
Season Record: 35-16, 1st place (of four) in ILW (International League West)

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Peyton Hillis Gets the Madden Cover Treatment

Taking a break from all the negativity surrounding Ohio sports for a moment, here is a video of Browns RB Peyton Hillis during his Madden ’12 cover shoot. Enjoy.

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=csN5RKUQ5TI&feature=mh_lolz&list=FLcSkNMuS0Y0o]

Awesome.

Paying Players Wouldn’t Have Saved Jim Tressel

(Note: WFNY doesn’t have a singular editorial voice. Today we will obviously have a lot of Ohio State posts as it is such big news. Remember that each writer’s opinion is their own.)

Excellent pieces already today from Andrew and Craig. There isn’t much left to say.

I think my stance on the Tressel situation is pretty clear. I believe he did the right thing by tendering his resignation. He allowed players he knew would be ineligible according to NCAA rules to play last season. And he tried to cover it up. That is the ‘unpardonable sin’ in college athletics.

But here’s the ridiculous part of the Tressel story- the idea that paying these college athletes would somehow put an end to the greed and keep the players content enough to stay away from those that would pay them for their signatures.

Yes, the system is flawed. But can you name me a major sports system that isn’t? How’s the NFL system working out? Pretty well for the owners I’d say. How about for the fans? Maybe not so much. How about the NBA? How’s that system working out? Or Major League Baseball? [Read more...]

Blaming Terrelle Pryor is Misguided

(Note: WFNY doesn’t have a singular editorial voice.  Today we will obviously have a lot of Ohio State posts as it is such big news.  Remember that each writer’s opinion is their own.)

Terrelle Pryor will probably go down in history, at least in some fans’ minds, as the guy who ended Jim Tressel’s career at Ohio State.  Fact is, Pryor was one of a few whose actions were the catalyst for this whole mess.  Being the catalyst isn’t really a reason for blame as much as it is just bad luck, though.  Being the catalyst will end up causing Pryor to go down in history as “the guy,” but putting all or even most of the blame on Pryor is far too simplistic.

Obviously, blaming Pryor relieves Jim Tressel of his part in lying to the NCAA.  That is unacceptable all by itself, obviously.  Tressel made his bed by how he reacted to the situation.  I want to focus on Pryor though.

Like many things, I have been on a journey with the Terrelle Pryor situation.  I have learned over the years not to always trust my most reactionary of thoughts, especially when something makes me angry or sad.  Over time, my opinions become far more substantial when they are firmly planted in between intellect and emotion rather than swimming exclusively in the latter. [Read more...]

Ohio State and Jim Tressel Just the Latest Victims of a Flawed System

(Note: WFNY doesn’t have a singular editorial voice.  Today we will obviously have a lot of Ohio State posts as it is such big news.  Remember that each writer’s opinion is their own.)

Throughout history there have been cycles. Empires have risen, and inevitably, they have fallen. The same can be said of sports, to a certain degree. In particular, in major college athletics, the system ruled the most by money, profit, and power, you can only experience so much success before your success begins to attract unwanted attention.

It’s a pattern that plays itself out far too often. University is successful, media begins to focus on program and inevitably finds loose ends, University stands behind coach, more media info comes out, boosters and donors get nervous and begin to melt under intense scrutiny, University parts ways with coach in an effort to keep their hands out and their palms up. And life goes on.

That’s the way college sports tend to work, and it’s the way the Jim Tressel era has ended at The Ohio State University. In many ways, this ending was so spectacularly destructive that it seems like this was really the only way this ever could have ended. Like the brightest star imploding into its own violent death, so too has arguably the most glorious era of Buckeye football been crushed under its own weight. [Read more...]

Blue Jays 11 Indians 1: The Swoon is Officially Here

11 days ago, I wrote a piece for Cleveland.com saying that danger time was approaching for the Indians. With the brutal schedule, injuries to Travis Hafner and Grady Sizemore, and the fact that they weren’t going to continue on a .700 winning percentage pace, the other shoe was going to drop at some point. If they could just stay afloat and get through this brutal stretch and stay far enough ahead of the Detroit Tigers, they could be alright in the end.

I expected to see some sort of swoon, and it appears that it has finally arrived.

Yesterday’s 11-1 loss in Toronto was the Tribe’s fifth in their last six games. Luckily for them, the Tigers haven’t exactly been lighting the world on fire either. They have gained just one game on them in the last week and sit five games back. Despite the struggles, the Tribe still carry the largest lead in any division.

There are many concerns right now. [Read more...]

While We’re Waiting… Tressel Resignation, Buckeye’s Future and Bad Break for Tribe

While We’re Waiting serves as the early morning gathering of WFNY-esque information for your viewing pleasure. Have something you think we should see? Send it to our tips email at tips@waitingfornextyear.com.

He said, she said? Does it even matter? “Ohio State football coach Jim Tressel, who met with coaches and players this morning to announce his resignation, was encouraged to resign, sources told The Dispatch today. Less than three months after President E. Gordon Gee and Athletic Director Gene Smith said they fully supported their embattled coach, mounting pressure, a pending NCAA disciplinary hearing and new revelations about the culture of the program forced the university to act on their once-revered coach, sources said. University officials wouldn’t confirm that Tressel was asked to resign. Gee had appointed a special committee within the past month to assess the impact of the football scandal on the university, an indication that Tressel’s departure was in the works for several weeks.” [The Dispatch] [Read more...]

SI: Ohio State Scandal Dates Back to 2002, Involves At Least 28 Players

After hours of speculation and boundless conjecture, Sports Illustrated has lifted the embargo on the much-discussed report penned by Pulitzer Prize-winning writer George Dohrmann. With the curtain now lifted, we receive a report that the Ohio State “memorabilia for tattoos” incident that has been well-documented stretches back to 2002 and has involved at least 28 players.

Ohio State’s head football coach Jim Tressel submitted his resignation early Monday morning ahead of the Dohrmann “special” report which discusses an entire history of issues surrounding the various programs led by the now-former play-caller.

It was earlier this week that former Ohio State wide receiver, return specialist, and all-around failure Ray Small went public with a dissertation that painted all Buckeye football brethren with a scarlet letter – pun fully intended.  In the wake of said interview, several former Buckeye football players have come out in defense of the program[Read more...]

Serenity Now

It’s been a rough day for Clevelanders and OSU fans but ESPN really took it up a notch with the above graphic featured today on Sportscenter.  ESPN and Cleveland fans have had an adversarial relationship for awhile now – it’s easy to moan and complain about some of the garbage that comes out of Bristol.  In between ABC Finals promos characterizing the Heat as “surviving” the hype, and the schadenfreude over the fall of Tressel, it’s important to take solace in your first place Indians.  They had one of their rougher weeks this season but can get back on the horse tonight in Toronto.  Fausto will be on the hill for the Indians.

In the interim, enjoy your Memorial Day and remember the fallen.

Jim Tressel Resigns at Ohio State

The Columbus Dispatch is reporting that Jim Tressel has resigned as the head football coach at Ohio State.  The Dispatch is reporting that it was a situation where the University forced or encouraged the resignation, after scandalous headlines continued to pile up.  Luke Fickell, who was named interim coach for the first five games of the 2011 season while Tressel served a suspension, will now serve as interim coach for the duration of next year.

The Dispatch also obtained a memo school President Gordon Gee sent to OSU trustees:

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While We’re Waiting… Cavs Draft Strategies, Indians Draft Prospects, Actaball

While We’re Waiting serves as the early morning gathering of WFNY-esque information for your viewing pleasure. Have something you think we should see? Send it to our tips email at tips@waitingfornextyear.com.

More on the Cavs draft: “If the [trade exception] is going to be used, I continue to think that will happen on Draft Night.  So what does all this trade talk mean at this point for the Cavaliers? To me it’s exactly what I thought the night Nick won the lottery.  The Cavaliers are good with Irving at 1, as they should be.  Beyond that, they are exploring every - and I mean each and every single - trade opportunity out there with respect to both the TE as well as that 4th pick overall.  I continue to think they will not pick 4th on Draft Night.  All the smoke that appears to be coming off the keyboard of Chris Grant’s blackberry seems to support this too.  Cavs don’t look too content at that position.”  [Bowers/Stepien Rules]

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While We’re Waiting… Analyzing Indians’ Success, Browns Free Agency Targets, Drafting Derrick Williams

While We’re Waiting serves as the early morning gathering of WFNY-esque information for your viewing pleasure. Have something you think we should see? Send it to our tips email at tips@waitingfornextyear.com.

Great Sunday read on the Tribe, with analysis of the magic of Brantley and Asdrubal: “To watch the current team and to know the pain that came pouring upon Indians fans’ (particularly in that fateful week in July of 2009) is to gain some measure of respect for the Front Office realizing what needed to be done and to go about doing it. Granted the compelling reasons to make some of those trades were self-inflicted (Mike Aubrey, Jerry Sowers, Crazy Eyes Crowe, Beau Mills…you want me to keep going), but in those mid-season moves, they unquestionably have had more hits than misses and as much as the questions were flying back then (and here’s another piece from yours truly attempting to rationalize what seemed irrational back then) as to what the organization was even doing or what direction they were headed, the Indians asked themselves the hard questions, realized that there were hard answers, and didn’t shy away from what that meant.” [The DiaTribe/Paul Cousineau]

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NBA Trade Rumors: Cavs Discussing Three Team Deal to Land 1st & 2nd Picks in Draft

Chris Broussard is reporting this afternoon that the Cavaliers are discussing a potential 3 team trade that would net them the 2nd pick in the draft.  The Cavs would then take Kyrie Irving at number one and Arizona’s Derrick Williams at number two.

The deal would involve the Timberwolves and the Pistons.  The Cavs would take on Rip Hamilton’s contract via the trade exception and also acquire Detroit’s 8th pick.  They would then spin the 4th and 8th picks into the 2nd overall in a deal with Minnesota.  Broussard added the disclaimer that the trade is being discussed at this point and nothing is imminent.

WFNY’s Scott is reporting that particular deal tweeted by Broussard is unlikely.  An initial source with the Cavs put considerable doubt on that specific trade rumor, indicating that the Pistons would demand more, and that the Cavs don’t value Williams enough to burn picks – they’d rather use the 1st, 4th, and 8th picks in that hypothetical.  A second source told Scott the reported deal is “bogus.” All this stems from the Pistons desperate desire to unload the expensive, aging, and disgruntled Hamilton.  It’s still early in the process with a lot of “discussions” taking place.  No trade is imminent.

It’s certainly an appealing scenario for Cavs fans.  Coming away with Irving and Williams in one night would be a delicious outcome.  Thus, a third source told Scott that the deal between the three teams is not far-fetched.  We have a month to go but, as is his wont, Dan Gilbert is exploring all options, including those where the Cavaliers take on more money to gain the opportunity to add young talent.  Follow WFNYScott on Twitter for the latest draft rumors.

Ray Small Back in the News: Ohio State Paper Twisted His Words

Ray Small put himself in the headlines this week, telling The Lantern he had sold his Big Ten title rings for cash.  The Cleveland native said he knew it was a violation of NCAA rules but he needed the cash to make ends meet.  He also indicated that this practice was pervasive among OSU players while he was there.

The backlash from OSU fans and players was immediate.  Players denounced the statements and excommunicated Small from a brotherhood.  Well, it looks like Small is back on a media tour but this time to “retract” some of his statements and blame The Lantern for mischaracterizing his words.  Prepare for an appearance on Outside the Lines.

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David Price Makes it Three in a Row for the Tribe

The most exciting thing for Indians fans about Friday’s game in Tampa Bay was the lineup.  Grady Sizemore returned to action but in the DH role and batting 6th.  Michael Brantley remained in the leadoff spot.  Shin-Soo Choo got the night off as Orlando Cabrera moved up to the 2 spot, Asdrubal moved down to the 3 hole and Santana was pushed all the way down to 7. It was a new bag of tricks for Actaball.

Unfortunately, it didn’t matter against Rays ace David Price, who had a career high 12 strikeouts.  Price had two rough outings since his last start against the Tribe but last night he walked only two Indians and gave up only four hits.  He has 19ks in two starts against the Tribe this year.  There was never a threat last night – except for a Grady Sizemore broken bat that helicoptered up the middle and grazed Price’s head.  Other than that, the Indians bats were helpless.

[Read more...]

While We’re Waiting…Cavs Should Stand Pat, Camp Colt, West Coast Offense Primer

While We’re Waiting serves as the early morning gathering of WFNY-esque information for your viewing pleasure. Have something you think we should see? Send it to our tips email at tips@waitingfornextyear.com.

Your NBA Finals t-shirt courtesy of Darren Rovell.
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Avoiding a knee-jerk trade: “The 2011-12 season is when the embers stir, and Cavs fans should be able to envision what might be. There will be no playoff push this season, but there should be a palpable future.

It is imperative for Dan Gilbert to understand this. He was justifiably elated when the Cavaliers snagged the number one pick in the NBA Lottery, but one worries he might allow that elation to consume him, skipping past the “new beginning” of which he spoke and forcing roster moves that favor minor, short-term successes. This week, Memphis rejected a trade proposal in which the Cavs offered the number four selection in the 2011 draft and a Rudy Gay-sized chunk of their trade exception in exchange for the Grizzlies’ injured star. Andre Iguodala’s name keeps floating around in unsubstantiated trade rumors; presumably the Cavs would offer or have already offered Philadelphia the same type of deal. These whispers sketch an unsettling picture: I sense Gilbert’s giddy tentacles creeping into the frame and meddling with the Cavaliers’ future.” [Colin McGowan/Cavs:TheBlog]

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Zeke’s Option Sets Stage for Sizemore’s Return

It took a mere pitch for Ezequiel Carrera to win over the Cleveland fan.  It may be many more before the the lighter-holding (or cell phone toting) are afforded an encore.

The lighting quick 23-year-old Carrera was optioned to Triple-A Columbus during the Tribe’s day to recuperate – after all, they were eviscerated by the Boston Red Sox a day prior – clearing the way for the pending return of fellow outfielder and fan-favorite Grady Sizemore.  Sizemore, who had been placed on the 15-day disabled list earlier in the month due to a right knee contusion, was activated on Friday afternoon with the Indians taking their talents to just north of South Beach via a three-game stint with the Tampa Bay Rays.  In his return, Sizemore will bat sixth and be the team’s designated hitter. [Read more...]

Former Buckeye Contradicts Ray Small

Former Buckeye Ray Small made headlines this week with his admission that he sold items during his Ohio State tenure and received discounts on cars. He also threw teammates under the bus by saying “everyone was doing it.” Not surprisingly several Buckeyes have stepped forward to address the issue. Harrison Till is not a name that most Buckeye fans are familiar with. As a long-snapper, you generally only hear their names mentioned when something goes wrong. Today Small came forward to change his tune.

Harrison wanted to have his voice heard, and gave his statement to BuckeyeSports.com. We asked for permission to reprint the statement here.

As far back as I can remember, every single Saturday during the Fall months in Northern New Jersey were dedicated to watching the Ohio State Football Buckeyes march up and down the field in Ohio Stadium. My father was a varsity letter winner for The Ohio University men‟s track & field program and my Mother, a member of a sorority who appreciated the wholesome life of the mid-west while enjoying the culture of Ohio State. Bottom line, they both bled Scarlet and Gray.

After meeting at Ohio State and eventually getting married, they have spent the last 41 years maintaining their friendships and all of their memories from Ohio State. [Read more...]

Football is King in Ohio, but is Ohio King of Football?

Friend of the site Mark Leonard is back with another guest piece, but this time he seems to have had a little too much time on his hands and a visit to Pro Football Reference. You can see Mark’s other guest pieces here.

Have you ever wondered which state has produced the all-time most or fewest NFL players? Or which foreign countries have generated the most football pros, active players or hall-of-famers?

Have you ever wondered what pros share your birthday or birthplace? Did you know only one American state is without an active NFL player?

Were one to visit the aforementioned web address and click onto the sub-category “Fun,” one could discover an itemization of all players born on that date. Or search for those whose births fall on a differently identified day. Or learn the identities of all those born in a given state, city or country.

For example, an examination of a link to “birth places” reveals that Vermont is not only the sole state without an active player, but also the location generating the fewest all-time NFL athletes (9) participating in the fewest total of league games (376). Only Alaskans (14) have scored fewer career touchdowns than Vermont’s 16, totals commonly exceeded by a single player most any season. [Read more...]

Re-Sign or Release: Semih Erden

Back in May, 2008, we featured a little series called “Re-Sign or Release” where we went through every player on the Cavaliers roster and turned to the readers to see what they would do if they were the general manager of the Wine and Gold and – hypothetically, of course – all of the players were up to have their respective contracts renewed.

Same hypothetical this time around: We’re looking to build for the future; all players are restricted free agents, likely requiring a bit of a pay raise from last season.  Do you re-sign them? Andrew has already laid out the roadblocks currently facing the Cavaliers in 2011; now it’s your turn. Vote below and leave your support in the comments.

The best part about this exercise is gauging the overall pshyche of the Cleveland fan.  Back during the first iteration in 2008, the Cavaliers had just finished a 45-win season and suffered an unfortunate bounce from the playoffs; the fans wanted to keep two (two!) non-LeBron-named players: Daniel Gibson and Delonte West.  Even Anderson Varejao had a two-thirds vote to be released.

Now, fresh off of 19 wins, Luke Harangody becomes the ninth player to be kept on the island.  Does Semih Erden become the 10th? [Read more...]