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“Which is why I appreciate what Lester Hudson did not just last night, but this whole weekend. When the camera followed Hudson to the Cavaliers’ sidelines late in regulation on Sunday against the Nets, and we saw him leap up to celebrate his fourth quarter of basketball wizardry with Manny Harris, I could only imagine the emotions he was feeling. About seven years ago, Lester first followed his hoop dreams to Southwest Tennessee Community College. He then moved on from there to the Ohio Valley Conference, and played well as guy nobody really heard of for the University of Tennessee-Martin Skyhawks. He’d then play so well that he’d eventually become that Conference’s Player of the Year, and go on to be drafted late in the second round by the Boston Celtics in 2009. If his journey from college basketball anonymity to the most storied franchise in NBA history ended there, it would be hard to not deem such a run ultimately successful.” [Bowers/Stepien Rules]
Ranking the Indians’ 25 man roster- “#15 Shelley Duncan, LF It is quite possible that Shelley Duncan fails to establish himself as a legitimate Major League outfielder this year – after all, he has yet to do it to this point in his career. Yet, it is also possible that Duncan can play well enough to be a serviceable player. The Indians have quite a few of those average-type players, but there are worse fates to have (see: the Houston Astros).” [Piascik/Indians Prospect Insider]
More tradition out the window? “USA Today reported last week that the 11 BCS commissioners and Notre Dame were considering a “Four Teams Plus” model that would allow the Big Ten and Pac-12 champions to continue to meet in the Rose Bowl even if one of those teams isn’t among the top four teams in whatever poll they decide to use to determine a four-team playoff. This didn’t exactly sit will with Adams, who thinks the top four teams should just be the top four teams regardless of conference affiliation, and that the historic Rose Bowl rivalry between the Big Ten and the Pac-12 is dated.
“This is not 1950, or 1960,” Adams told The Wall Street Journal. “There are great schools in the [Atlantic Coast Conference] and the Southeastern Conference and the Big 12. I think it’s time to put everybody on an equal footing. I just reject the notion that the Big Ten and the Pac-12 ought to be treated differently in this process.” [Watson/ Dr. Saturday]
Taking a look at early velocity numbers- “Across the board the Indians were low, with the differential ranging from -5.4 (R Perez) to -1.9 (C Perez). The temperatures and early season conditioning probably account for a good deal of the difference, while small sample size and pitch f/x calibration issues possibly filling in much of the remaining gap. In Raffy’s case, for example, he only had one pitch classified as a fastball (and possibly questionably so), so I wouldn’t put any credence into that number. The broader point is simply that this was an across the board difference, and not something that is strong evidence, by itself, of any individual concern for any given pitcher.” [Let's Go Tribe]
Finally, your Ebay item of the week- Indians’ logo stickers from Fleer. You’re welcome. [Ebay]