A GRIP ON SPORTS
Some days it is hard to decide what to write about, either because there is just too much to cover or, as is the case today, too little. Read on.
• I'm exaggerating just a bit. There is plenty to cover today, just none of it earth-shaking news like a huge signing or a key Seahawk injury. It's just another day in the traditional summer transitional time between baseball and football. The Mariners won, which, though not earth-shaking, isn't expected. The Hawks practiced. So did the Cougars. No one was injured, which is always a good thing. The Indians won and will get a few days off, something out-of-the-ordinary for the Northwest League. Idaho and Eastern are about ready to kick off training camp, but that doesn't happen until today and Wednesday, respectively. The Shock found out they will be traveling to Arizona for another showdown with the Rattlers, this one with an Arena Bowl berth on the line. And that's about all. Like I said, not really light but nothing that's going to stop you in your tracks. So, to make your day a bit brighter, I found this column from Mark Purdy in the San Jose Mercury News. It's pretty funny. Can't you see bench jockeys in the future pounding away on their iPhones in the dugout, tweeting out the modern equivalent of "your mother wears army boots?" Too funny.
• WSU: I have to hand it to Christian Caple. I was down in Pullman over the weekend and he didn't ask me to help him move. Probably doesn't like to hear the sound of my laughter, which would come just before i answered "no." But he did ask me to pick up the Pac-12 links today, as he was finishing up the move to his new apartment at about 2 a.m. So we'll do that for him. It's a lot easier than lugging a refrigerator up a couple flights of stairs. We'll start with WSU, with the links coming from Christian. They include this story on a freshman receiver making a mark and a blog post on Sunday's practice. ... As for the rest of the conference, most schools are beginning preseason camp this week, though Arizona has been at it long enough for the quarterback questions to surface. ... There are five position battles to watch at ASU. ... The Trojans defense is in new hands and the players like them. ... Utah (pictured) begins camp today with a few storylines to watch. ... The Beavers are on the upswing. At least they were last season. ... Colorado is on a downswing, though there is a new coach in town. ... The Huskies have questions to answer as well when camp begins today.
• Idaho: Speaking of opening training camp, it happens today in Moscow. As Josh Wright tells us, the Vandals' camp will have a whole new look.
• Indians: The Northwest League is taking a break for its All-Star Game and Spokane will get to spend the time thinking about a win, thanks to Janluis Castro's eighth-inning home run yesterday. The 2-1 win over Salem-Keiser sent the Indians on the road for a few days on an up-note. Chris Derrick has more in this blog post and story.
• Mariners: For once I don't feel all that old. Well, that's not true but the Ancient Mariners and their offensive show yesterday does make me feel a bit younger today. Raul Ibanez and Henry Blanco (pictured above), two guys who seemingly played with Babe Ruth, supplied all the runs in the M's 3-2 victory over Baltimore yesterday. But the big news might be youngster Danny Farquhar (pictured at right), who picked up his second consecutive save with a perfect ninth inning. ... Farquhar's emergence has eased the pain of Tom Wilhelmsen's struggles and now Stephen Pryor's season-ending injury. Yep, Pryor, the hard-throwing right-hander who would be setting up whoever is closing if healthy, has been shut down for the year. ... Eric Wedge is also not ready to return from his stroke. ... Finally, Nick Franklin and his 0-for-24 streak took a seat yesterday. Dustin Ackley also sat and may be in Tacoma in the near future.
• Sounders: If there is a team on the rise in the MLS, it has to be the Sounders. And only about 80 percent of it is from the signing of Clint Dempsey. But it is his addition that has his new teammates excited.
• Seahawks: Believe it or not, the Hawks' first preseason game is Thursday in San Diego. From then on, it's pretty much a game a week until the Super Bowl, or at least that's how Seahawk fans are hoping the season will go. If the Hawks are to get there, they'll need some unexpected contributions, especially at positions thinned by injuries, including tight end and wide receiver. ... One guy back from the injured list is backup running back Robert Turbin. ... The depth chart for Thursday's game is out and there are a few surprises.
• It's been a while, mainly because I've been out of town, but we're back on the radio on the Patchin, Lukens and Osso show today from 3 to 6 p.m. You can listen here. Of course, we'll be back here tomorrow. Until then. ...