“Teams in Town-What I Think”
TORREY PINES….What a fabulous four days of action in the Farmer’s Insurance Open. The weather, the galleries, the shot making. Jason Rose has become a superstar on the tour over the last two years, and lived up to his #1-world ranking with a wild Sunday on the South Course. But it was not easy. Dodging bad shots, knocking in putts that were placed on the edge of the green. Fighting thru sand traps. Rose survived 3-penalty shots on Saturday but made great shots on Sunday.You go (-21), and he did it twice this weekend-getting to that total, you deserve the win. Adam Scott pushed him right to the final two holes but ran out of holes. Rose survived two bogeys early in the final round, survived a sand trap shot, a shot into the crowd, and a tough shot out of high grass. He tore apart the supposedly newly toughened-rebuilt South Course, with a 66- in the 2nd round, then the 69 as the sun set on Sundayand did it with new clubs. It was impressive.
TIGER TOWN…The galleries were superb in their support of Tiger Woods, who got better and better the final two rounds, and came home in double digits, at 10-under par, His game carries on, where he left it off at the end of last year, solid. Now we see if he can get spectacular.
JON RAHM…He had moments, especially opening day 10-under 62. He was close to getting back to the top on Sunday, but he had 3-puts that lipped off the edge o the cup. He hits those birdies and he would have been right on Rose’s heels. He was all over the course at the end, hitting one onto the golf cart path, another into a bunker late.
RORY ROARS….First time at Torrey, and likely will be back after finishing in a scramble mode at (-14). He liked the challenge, played well for the first time out.,
PADRES…Believe what you want to believe. But with spring training about to begin, I can’t fathom Manny Machado coming to San Diego, and I have doubts the franchise would fork out a 25-to-30M a year contract for a guy who openly admits ‘I’m not Johnny Hustle’. It would fast forward their credibility to add his bat to Hosmer-Myers-Renfroe-Reyes, but can he pitch also? The Padres boast one of the most unproven rotations of anybody in baseball.
BROWN IS BACK….They will look different a year from today when the Padres go to the Cactus League in Brown & California Gold, the new color scheme. White home jerseys with Brown lettering trimmed with gold. Brown road jersey with Gold lettering in the front. Looks good. What would look better would be a team in the wildcard playoff race too.
AJ-OK….You could be critical of GM-AJ Preller’s inertia in terms of finding some front of the rotation pitching. He obviously will not overpay. He is not interested in dealing away his young gems. Maybe standing pat is the right move. Maybe bringing azs many as 12-young starters to camp-he can find 6-trustworthy arms. That’s what spring training is all about.
AZTECS ARRIVE….They’re being people at home, and Jalen McDaniels has strung together 5-straight double double, and could wind up being played of the year in the Mountain West Conference. But SDSU must still prove they can do it on the road, where beatings have become the norm.
GULLS GREAT…It’s been some mid season run for the AHL-San Diego Gulls, but now the Anaheim Ducks have called up their top goal scorers, in the wake of an injury ravaged NHL season that is threatening the Ducks even getting to postseason. Credit Dallas Eakins with this midseason surge, teaching, demanding, teaching, demanding. A (9-2-1) record in January, a large chunk of it on the road. They go from 8th place to a couple of points out of second place with lots of games to play. I maintain Eakins remains the ‘head coach in waiting’ when-if Randy Carlisle is fired.
SOCKERS….A neat signing, legendary US World Cup soccer star Landon Donovan, to play the rest of the season. You hope he becomes a real contributor, has gas left in the tank, and is not just a PR play to sell some extra tickets. The MASL, Major Arena Soccer League, is in 17-cities, inclukdig longtime hotbeds like Baltimore-St Louis, but you wish the game were in more major markets, not in NY-LA-San Franisco-Chicago-Boston-Philadellphia.
SUPER BOWL SUNDAY….It’s coming and the Rams are in it against the Patriots, but there’s no buzz in San Diego. The Rams are not San Diego’s team, the Chargers are still the emotional link to the NFL. Last weeks TV ratings in Los Angeles for the Rams-Saints game were weak, in fact San Diego had a higher TV rating for that game than LA did.
SAN DIEGO STATE…They say it’s going to be different, the Aztecs offense going too a spread package. They will get big rushing yardage in the one back set, and the fullback will become obsolete. The biggest issue, does SDSU really have enough quality wide receivers to run a full time spread. Odd they would determine a philosophical shift like this, after the first early football recruit signing date.
USD-SNUB….What a career Anthony Lawrence had with the Torerors, this four year run, and yet not even named a FCS-1AA-All American , and did not get invites to any postseason all star games. Maybe he winds up in the Indoor Football League.
FLEET SAILING….Spring football about to begin the second week of February in the Alliance of American Football. The Fleet have been in the joint preseason training camp in San Antonio for the last 3-weeks, and will practice at the Stadium for a week before they open the season. Disappointed in the Fleet lack of marketing of the team. Think this market could be a gold-mine.
ARENA LEAGUE…The indoor football team, the Strike Force, doesn’t open till the end of February…and will conduct their training camp here in San Diego. Look for a flood of player signings shortly, with ex-Chargers pass rusher Burt Grossman will as their head coach.