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Texas Rangers in Playoffs? MLB Postseason Features Familiar Faces

Texas Rangers in Playoffs? MLB Postseason Features Familiar Faces thumbnail

Rangers’ rooting in baseball playoffs, role reversal for Cowboys’ coach, power of three for Mavs’ MVP candidate and 40-year reunions, all in this week’s DFW sports notebook.

WHITT’S END 10.14.22

Whether you’re at the end of your coffee, your day, your week or even your rope, welcome to Whitt’s End …

*Since the Texas Rangers are long gone, who do you root for in the Major League Baseball playoffs?

We’ll always hope Ron Washington – currently the Atlanta Braves’ third-base coach – finally gets his ring.

But there is a decidedly Rangers flavor on the San Diego Padres, who feature former Texas assistant general manager A.J. Preller in the front office, Yu Darvish on the mound and Jurickson Profar in the outfield.

Those three were together in Arlington in 2012-13 on Rangers teams that won 93 and 91 wins but had zero postseason success.

*The knee-jerks are having a rough year. Remember just a month ago when the Dallas Cowboys started the season by not scoring a touchdown, losing quarterback Dak Prescott to a broken thumb and somehow burning dinner before the oven even reached 375 degrees? In the wake of the 19-3 loss to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, coach Mike McCarthy was saddled with the best (worst) odds of being the first coach fired during this season. Now? After four consecutive wins, a clever game plan that relies on the league’s best defense and caters to backup Cooper Rush’s limited strengths, it’s McCarthy who is again a leading candidate. But – with the 8th-best odds – he’s in line to instead win Coach of the Year. Deep breaths, everyone. In the NFL, there is only a one-yard-wide line between stupid and savvy. McCarthy’s hot seat is suddenly a cool, comfy recliner.

*Luka Doncic has a pristine chance of winning 2023 NBA MVP. Mostly because the Dallas Mavericks’ star is an elite, ball-dominant player. But also partly because he’s not Nikola Jokic. Like how People magazine never picks a repeat winner of the “Sexiest Man Alive” – do dudes get unsexy overnight? – the NBA is fickle about its MVP winners. Jokic winning the last two means he has zero chance to win it again this season. The league began awarding MVPs in 1956. You know who never won three in a row: Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Magic Johnson, Michael Jordan, Karl Malone, Tim Duncan, Steve Nash, LeBron James, Steph Curry and Giannis Antetokounmpo. They all won two, but not the third. The short list to win three straight MVPs: Bill Russell, Wilt Chamberlain and Larry Bird, the last to do it 1984-86. In the NBA’s flawed “best player” contest, it’s inexplicably more attractive to voters for a player to have never won the award than to have won it twice.

*Welcome to the Texas State … Fare! $20 parking. $8 for a corn dog. $12 to ride the Ferris wheel. Went to Texas-OU last weekend and the Fair was crowded with what felt like 100,000 people all meeting in Big Tex’s shadow. Don’t come at me with that “inflation” nonsense. People have money. Discretionary income. Enough to spend on things one wouldn’t necessarily consider essential.

https://twitter.com/richiewhitt/status/1578846216833486848

*Give Rush his props, but no astute sports observer thinks he’s in the same stratosphere as Prescott or believes there is anything remotely close to a Cowboys’ quarterback controversy. Let Dak complete only 10 passes for 102 yards in a game – as Rush did last week in Los Angeles – and see if anyone just shrugs and calls him a “winner.” Dallas’ defense is great. Dallas’ game plan is great. Rush is not great. How quickly we forget it was just last Summer we weren’t sure he was better than Will Grier or, for that matter, Ben DiNucci. Give him a new contract at your peril.

READ:  Texas appeals court upholds murder charge for ex-Dallas cop who killed her neighbor

*Hot.

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*Not.

*92 percent. According to history, that’s the chance the Cowboys have of making the playoffs with their 4-1 start. Only twice in 24 years – 1984 and 2008 – has winning four of the first five not led to the postseason.

*Get ready for J.J. Barea 2.0. The diminutive dynamo was a key in the Mavs’ 2011 NBA championship run. Now the Mavs are cloning him, signing veteran journeyman Facundo Campazzo to be an alternate playmaker to Doncic. The Argentinian Campazzo, all 5-foot-9 of him, is the pest you hate … unless he plays for your team. He played the last two seasons for the Denver Nuggets. But much more importantly, he was Luka’s teammate on Real Madrid when it won European championship titles in 2017-18.

*Thieves recently smashed a window at a Dallas 7-Eleven and dragged out the ATM. Those things can be stocked with up to $200,000 cash, but apparently are almost impossible to break into. By the way, ATM stands for “Automated Teller Machine”, meaning it’s redundant to say “I need to find an ATM machine.” Same with “hot water heater.” It’s merely a water heater. But I digress. Come to think of it, I’ve perfected the art of digression.

*If you enjoy the challenge of bikini-waxed greens, enough sand traps to serve as a South Padre Island reserve and 600-yard Par 5s into the southerly Summer breeze, get yourself out to the new PGA headquarters golf course in Frisco. If not, wait until next year’s Senior PGA or the big-boy PGA in 2027 and watch the professionals try it.

https://twitter.com/richiewhitt/status/1579902980228550656

*Leftovers from another lousy Rangers season: Nate Lowe is the first Texas player to hit .300 since 2016 … They were 30-26 in starts by pitchers Martin Perez and Jon Gray; 38-68 in all others. Pitching, anyone?

*Fact that will drive some Texans crazy: The current “Miss Texas USA” is R’Bonney Gabriel, an Asian-American. The current “Miss Texas America” is Averie Bishop, also Asian-American. Fact that drives this Texan crazy: We really need a Miss Texas USA and a Miss Texas America to be two different women?

*Came across a stat last week that feels surreal: Cowboys’ eight-year veteran offensive lineman Zack Martin has more Pro Bowl appearances (seven) than holding penalties (six). He’s played more than 4,000 NFL snaps. Six holding penalties. Rookie Tyler Smith has three this season … in five games. And that doesn’t count one that was declined last week.

*Hug your Mom. Or maybe just answer one of her daily, multiple phone calls?

https://twitter.com/richiewhitt/status/1580588567343947776

*Happy Birthday, Jerry Jones. Wondering if the 80-year-old multibillionaire gets nervous when a story surfaces about one of his peers/friends having “dirt” on him? I’m guessing not. By the time you’re 80, you likely have dirt on all the folks who have dirt on you.

*Graduated from Duncanville High School 40 years ago. Since then our class of 652 has lost 57 people. Being old is a blessing.

*This Weekend? Friday and Saturday let’s rejoice in high-school reunion festivities. Sunday let’s forget all the people we just temporarily remembered and dive into Cowboys-Eagles. As always, don’t be a stranger.

Rangers’ rooting in baseball playoffs, role reversal for Cowboys’ coach, power of three for Mavs’ MVP candidate and 40-year reunions, all in this week’s DFW sports notebook.

WHITT’S END 10.14.22

Whether you’re at the end of your coffee, your day, your week or even your rope, welcome to Whitt’s End …

*Since the Texas Rangers are long gone, who do you root for in the Major League Baseball playoffs?

READ:  Deadline day LIVE: Rangers announce Ramsey, Aubameyang leaves Arsenal for Barcelona, Everton unveil Van de Beek and Alli as Newcastle sign Burn, Tottenham confirm Bentancur and Kulusevski deals

We’ll always hope Ron Washington – currently the Atlanta Braves’ third-base coach – finally gets his ring.

But there is a decidedly Rangers flavor on the San Diego Padres, who feature former Texas assistant general manager A.J. Preller in the front office, Yu Darvish on the mound and Jurickson Profar in the outfield.

Those three were together in Arlington in 2012-13 on Rangers teams that won 93 and 91 wins but had zero postseason success.

*The knee-jerks are having a rough year. Remember just a month ago when the Dallas Cowboys started the season by not scoring a touchdown, losing quarterback Dak Prescott to a broken thumb and somehow burning dinner before the oven even reached 375 degrees? In the wake of the 19-3 loss to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, coach Mike McCarthy was saddled with the best (worst) odds of being the first coach fired during this season. Now? After four consecutive wins, a clever game plan that relies on the league’s best defense and caters to backup Cooper Rush’s limited strengths, it’s McCarthy who is again a leading candidate. But – with the 8th-best odds – he’s in line to instead win Coach of the Year. Deep breaths, everyone. In the NFL, there is only a one-yard-wide line between stupid and savvy. McCarthy’s hot seat is suddenly a cool, comfy recliner.

*Luka Doncic has a pristine chance of winning 2023 NBA MVP. Mostly because the Dallas Mavericks’ star is an elite, ball-dominant player. But also partly because he’s not Nikola Jokic. Like how People magazine never picks a repeat winner of the “Sexiest Man Alive” – do dudes get unsexy overnight? – the NBA is fickle about its MVP winners. Jokic winning the last two means he has zero chance to win it again this season. The league began awarding MVPs in 1956. You know who never won three in a row: Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Magic Johnson, Michael Jordan, Karl Malone, Tim Duncan, Steve Nash, LeBron James, Steph Curry and Giannis Antetokounmpo. They all won two, but not the third. The short list to win three straight MVPs: Bill Russell, Wilt Chamberlain and Larry Bird, the last to do it 1984-86. In the NBA’s flawed “best player” contest, it’s inexplicably more attractive to voters for a player to have never won the award than to have won it twice.

*Welcome to the Texas State … Fare! $20 parking. $8 for a corn dog. $12 to ride the Ferris wheel. Went to Texas-OU last weekend and the Fair was crowded with what felt like 100,000 people all meeting in Big Tex’s shadow. Don’t come at me with that “inflation” nonsense. People have money. Discretionary income. Enough to spend on things one wouldn’t necessarily consider essential.

https://twitter.com/richiewhitt/status/1578846216833486848

*Give Rush his props, but no astute sports observer thinks he’s in the same stratosphere as Prescott or believes there is anything remotely close to a Cowboys’ quarterback controversy. Let Dak complete only 10 passes for 102 yards in a game – as Rush did last week in Los Angeles – and see if anyone just shrugs and calls him a “winner.” Dallas’ defense is great. Dallas’ game plan is great. Rush is not great. How quickly we forget it was just last Summer we weren’t sure he was better than Will Grier or, for that matter, Ben DiNucci. Give him a new contract at your peril.

*Hot.

*Not.

*92 percent. According to history, that’s the chance the Cowboys have of making the playoffs with their 4-1 start. Only twice in 24 years – 1984 and 2008 – has winning four of the first five not led to the postseason.

READ:  Rangers outlast Hurricanes with timely offence, tremendous goaltending

*Get ready for J.J. Barea 2.0. The diminutive dynamo was a key in the Mavs’ 2011 NBA championship run. Now the Mavs are cloning him, signing veteran journeyman Facundo Campazzo to be an alternate playmaker to Doncic. The Argentinian Campazzo, all 5-foot-9 of him, is the pest you hate … unless he plays for your team. He played the last two seasons for the Denver Nuggets. But much more importantly, he was Luka’s teammate on Real Madrid when it won European championship titles in 2017-18.

*Thieves recently smashed a window at a Dallas 7-Eleven and dragged out the ATM. Those things can be stocked with up to $200,000 cash, but apparently are almost impossible to break into. By the way, ATM stands for “Automated Teller Machine”, meaning it’s redundant to say “I need to find an ATM machine.” Same with “hot water heater.” It’s merely a water heater. But I digress. Come to think of it, I’ve perfected the art of digression.

*If you enjoy the challenge of bikini-waxed greens, enough sand traps to serve as a South Padre Island reserve and 600-yard Par 5s into the southerly Summer breeze, get yourself out to the new PGA headquarters golf course in Frisco. If not, wait until next year’s Senior PGA or the big-boy PGA in 2027 and watch the professionals try it.

https://twitter.com/richiewhitt/status/1579902980228550656

*Leftovers from another lousy Rangers season: Nate Lowe is the first Texas player to hit .300 since 2016 … They were 30-26 in starts by pitchers Martin Perez and Jon Gray; 38-68 in all others. Pitching, anyone?

*Fact that will drive some Texans crazy: The current “Miss Texas USA” is R’Bonney Gabriel, an Asian-American. The current “Miss Texas America” is Averie Bishop, also Asian-American. Fact that drives this Texan crazy: We really need a Miss Texas USA and a Miss Texas America to be two different women?

*Came across a stat last week that feels surreal: Cowboys’ eight-year veteran offensive lineman Zack Martin has more Pro Bowl appearances (seven) than holding penalties (six). He’s played more than 4,000 NFL snaps. Six holding penalties. Rookie Tyler Smith has three this season … in five games. And that doesn’t count one that was declined last week.

*Hug your Mom. Or maybe just answer one of her daily, multiple phone calls?

https://twitter.com/richiewhitt/status/1580588567343947776

*Happy Birthday, Jerry Jones. Wondering if the 80-year-old multibillionaire gets nervous when a story surfaces about one of his peers/friends having “dirt” on him? I’m guessing not. By the time you’re 80, you likely have dirt on all the folks who have dirt on you.

*Graduated from Duncanville High School 40 years ago. Since then our class of 652 has lost 57 people. Being old is a blessing.

*This Weekend? Friday and Saturday let’s rejoice in high-school reunion festivities. Sunday let’s forget all the people we just temporarily remembered and dive into Cowboys-Eagles. As always, don’t be a stranger.

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