What a day for local sports fans.
It is pretty surreal what has happened. Three times in Mizzou history, the school has had the No. 1 overall player in either basketball or football. RB Tony Van Zant blew out his knee. WR Dorial Green-Beckham was kicked off the team. And now basketball's Michael Porter Jr. will undergo back surgery, playing just 1:40 in his Tigers career. I honestly don't know if he'll come back at all. Kyrie Irving played only a handful of games for Duke before an injury, and he still left after his freshman year to be the No. 1 pick. You would have to think that MPJ would go pro this summer. If you're a top-five pick, man, it's hard not to. But yes, I suppose you can say that if he wasn't coming back next year anyway, then the only blessing in disguise is that the current team gets more chances to grow for next year. Like, besides Robertson and Barnett, all these guys will likely be back next year. But this injury is devastating for like 73 reasons, and we'll get into more of it in this chat, along with Stanton talk.
Savior is a strong word. Here's what Michael Porter Jr. was for Mizzou: Very seldom has a team been thaaaaat bad and nabbed a recruit thaaaaat good. It was the perfect storm (though I think that a perfect storm actually means the coming-together of a lot of bad things ... at the time, it was the coming together of good things: Anderson fired, Cuonzo hired, Romar fired). Here was hope -- no, I don't think most people thought Mizzou would win it all this year, but Porter Jr. was such a wonderful star and Pied Piper for a school that's had a buncha bad breaks the past few years (or decades, really). He would provide 20 ppg and enticed at least three other studs to come to Mizzou.
I will say, it's tricky for reporters to be completely plugged into private talks a teams having with at least two other teams, probably more. But yes, the talented Mark Feinsand reported today that the SF Giants have had "deeper discussions" with Miami about Giancarlo Stanton. Does that mean STL is doomed? Of course not. It's the flow of the news. Surely STL will react and adapt and not just give up. Acquiring an elite player is like a marathon, and we're on mile 21, trying to gauge the winner. If Stanton wants to win, I don't know why he doesn't look closer at St. Louis or Boston. Honestly, I don't know why he wouldn't try to go to Boston -- you could be the big man on a 90-win team with amazing pitching and young talent and you're in one of the biggest market, and you and Aaron Judge could be these two larger-than-life sluggers facing off for the next decade.
I still plan on being 5 foot 6 9/10
I've said this before, and hopefully no one will throw beer on me next time I'm at J.P. Fields, but I like Berglund. I think he'll be a bigger boost to the Blues than even Jay-Bo, since the third line has been so paltry. But I'm excited to see Jay back with the Blues -- heck I'm excited to see the Blues back, it's been like a month -- and this will definitely strengthen the penalty kill. The Blues had a few bumps in the road, and some advanced stats suggested they were getting a little luckier than other teams, but this is a solid, solid team, if anything. That comeback in Vancouver! Down two goals late, on the road, on the last game of a road trip? Impressive. I don't wanna say anything about Presidents yet, but I'm very optimistic about this team, especially with a hunk of home games coming up.
This is a great question. A really good one. I think the way they won those games against Tenn and FLA show how good the team has gotten. They didn't survive those games, they attacked them, winning quite emphatically. But I see where you're coming from. They're bowl eligible. That was the goal. They achieved the goal. But their SEC wins are against two teams winless in the conference and a third, Florida, that was on a freefall. I think it's fair to keep that in the back of your mind when judging this team going forward, but winning is winning, right? And now they have all this momentum, a chance to win a seventh game and -- and this is SO valuable -- but free weeks of practice. So I'm cautiously optimistic, but not as much as I'd be if their SEC wins came against, say, Georgia and Kentucky.
Even without Michael Porter Jr., you're right, the InBev Product Braggin' Rights Game will be a spectacle this season. Two new coaches, two local studs, one on each team -- Mark Smith on ILL, and of course Jeremiah Tilmon on MIZ, after scorning ILL following the coaching change. I think with the MPJ injury, we can step away and look at this like this -- Mizzou was horrendous under Kim Anderson, and hey, at least they got this new coach, Tilmon, Jontay Porter, Blake Harris, Kassius Robertson and some momentum. Look at where you are, look at where you started. And I know numerous local media members skipped the Braggin' Rights game last season -- you'd think they'd be there this year, though I liked the elbow room on press row!
In honor of my man Brian Grawer, I'll go with Pattonville.
Another local loss for Mizzou, but I loved Trout's announcement via video. If you didn't see it, the Chaminade stud was in this documentary style video, talking about his love for a lost cousin, who had died five years prior. He said he wanted his cousin to be the first to know where he'd choose to go to college. So the video showed him placing something on the gravestone ... and the camera then zoomed in and showed it was a USC pennant. Classy and emotional.
You makes some good points. I think the idea is that the Cards aren't going to sign a 30-something starter to a deal that's longer than, say, two years. So the idea of signing a Darvish until 2022 is out of the question. But, I wouldn't rule out a trade for a pitcher, and another thing to keep in mind is this -- they can always trade for a starter at the trade deadline. Also, I wonder if the addition of Mike Maddux and the recent trends about bullpen usage in baseball will mean that STL doesn't plan on having started eat up as many innings as in previous years? Perhaps you'll have those young guys you mentioned just go through a lineup twice, and the Cards possibly put more of an emphasis on matchup pitching with the relievers -- that also means, of course, they need some new relievers.
I don't know what that means though, in regards to "waiting around?" We haven't heard if Donaldson is truly even available, so besides that, Stanton is the only A-plus-lister available right now. You gotta do everything you can to nab him. You gotta be able to say, if the Giants get him, "Man, we NEVER wouldve offered that, that's crazy!"
I get a loooot of questions on this thing, and they flood the screen like a twitter feed, so sometimes I don't get to all of them. And the "calling out" questions are tricky, because I don't want to turn this into a free-reign forum... but I will say this, myself and the other writers have been particularly passionate and pointed in our commentary about the Cardinals since last season fell apart.
Touche' on the name Lincoln Hawk. A heckuva arm wrestler.
Good question, and I would think less likely, right? Why go all in on one thing and then take away a key run producer?
hahaha I do feel bad for the Mizzou people. Like, I know other colleges have had terrible things happen. I'm not saying Mizzou has had the most. But man, if you just think about Mizzou basketball in the last decade, you've got a Haith team No. 2 seeded and it loses to Norfolk State...then the Haith fallout... Anderson comes in behind the eight ball already, and he can't get any momentum... and then you have the No. 1 player in the country?!? ... And then you get a glimpse of his greatness in that Kansas game? And now this? I feel bad for the people who suffer through this program. But we can also wonder -- hey, maybe this team'll still be pretty good even without MPJ. Maybe they can still crack the tourney?
People ask these kind of questions occasionally. And it's easy to let your mind wander. But the difference is, stolen bases are way down in the modern game. Catchers are better than ever, and there is much risk to being caught stealing (or, at least, more of an onus put on it than in previous decades -- just look at Vince Coleman's stats). And you need need need the slugging, the doubles and homers, to create runs.
is are your middle names Jacob Jingle Heimer? That's my name too! Yea, I'm with you and I've definitely written about it a lot this fall -- the Cards came in second on some free agents in the past, and tried to work around it, but this is the year they need a big win in the offseason. They need numerous new players -- a bat, multiple relievers, maybe a short-term starter. And I'm also curious, as you are, about people showing up to the games. Yes, DeWitt Jr. acknowledged that the team had more no-shows last year than the year before. And if they are an average team next year, you'll see it again. But I don't think it'll turn into San Diego or something. There's too much history -- and fans come often just for the experience, not simply the nine current Cardinals. But missing the playoffs three years in a row? Most teams don't do that these days. Or at least the ones the Cards call contemporaries.
I'd think he's still a lottery pick, definitely. These aren't the days where an injury can change a person's career, but then again, the only time I've been a doctor was in 2015 when I told that girl that at Bar Napoli. If I'm him, and I'm age eligible to go to the NBA, I go to the NBA. It's a dog-eat-dog world out there (and as Norm Peterson from Cheers once said, "And I'm wearing Milk Bone underwear."). MPJ will remain a top talent, but I'd hate for him to "lose" a year or "waste" a year by coming back to Mizzou in 18-19, just because he wants to for the fans and stuff. Strike while the iron is hot.