Spring Traditions

February brings many things, Groundhog’s Day and Valentine’s Day to name a few, but this month also delivers the start of the baseball season, nightly basketball on the collegiate and professional levels, and plenty of Charles Barkley.

Baseball Topics:

It’s early in baseball season since pitchers and catchers are just reporting this week, but there will be plenty to talk about this baseball season.  The major news this week revolved around the Albert Pujols contract negotiations with the St. Louis Cardinals.  Albert has played for the Cardinals for ten years and been one of the best players to ever play the game over those ten years.  He is a lock for the Baseball Hall of Fame, but he will also be a free agent (a free agent may sign to play with any team that is willing to pay him). at the end of this season.  The basics behind the negotiations are this: Pujols is 31 years old and appears to want a contract that pays him like he is the best player in the game for a long time.  The numbers that have been talked about in the media are $30 million per year for ten years, but that’s an awful lot of money to commit to one person who will be 41 at the end of the contract, especially with all of the statistics showing how players perform as they age past 35.  He set a deadline for contract negotiations for Wednesday at noon, saying that he would not discuss any contract extension until the season ended and he became a free agent   The thing to know about this is the sides never came to an agreement, and now the disaster known as #Albertageddon is looming towards free agency.

Another quick baseball link for you is the Miguel Cabrera DUI.  The story can be found here and his mugshot is great.  Cabrera is an immensely talented baseball player with a very serious drinking problem.  He has a history with the sauce, including an incident in which he was arrested at his home the night before a crucial game at the end of the 2009 season.  Would your boss bail you out of jail and take you to work?  Probably not, but his certainly did.

Basketball Conversation:

The NBA has reached its midpoint which means the All Star game is this weekend, the trade deadline is next week, and Charles Barkley is up to his usual shenanigans on TNT two nights per week.  The biggest story to follow is still the Carmelo Anthony trade discussed in last week’s post, but you also should know a bit about the NBA All Star Weekend.

This year the All Star festivities are being held in Los Angeles which means the All Star parties are going to be lavish and outrageous.  This event is mostly about parties and dunking.  The game will be held on Sunday night and will almost certainly feature little to no defensive effort by the stars playing.  The best part of All Star weekend is probably the Slam Dunk Contest.  Not only is it completely ridiculous, but any lady who actively wants to watch the Slam Dunk contest is instantly that much more awesome to spend time with.

A Tribute to Toomer’s Corner:

The final talking point for this weekend is more somber, having to do with the poisoning of the Live Oak trees at Toomer’s Corner in Auburn, Alabama.  The trees are the sites of many memories and traditions for students and fans of Auburn University, but they are also beautifully majestic living things.  Following the Iron Bowl (the annual rivalry football game between the University of Alabama and Auburn University) a 62 year Alabama fan went to Toomer’s Corner an spread a lethal poison on the ground around the trees, then proceeded to call into a syndicated Alabama sports radio show to brag about his feat.  The man has been arrested and charged, but his actions were unspeakable, regardless of which team he roots for, especially when experts say the 130-year-old trees will likely not survive.







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