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The Spokesman-Review Newspaper

The Spokesman-Review Newspaper The Spokesman-Review

Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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A darn full Saturday

A GRIP ON SPORTS

It was a big day in the Northwest yesterday and the biggest aspect of it didn't hit until late afternoon. That's when news began to leak about the Mariners' trade of Michael Pineda to the New York Yankees for catcher/designated hitter Jesus Montero. There were others involved in the biggest trade of the offseason thus far, but those are the main characters in this Hot Stove play. Read on.

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• We talked about this quite a bit down the stretch of the Patchin, Lukens and Osso radio show last evening, with my thoughts finally coming full circle. The first reaction was negative, with it ranging from hating to help the Yankees – they need quality starting pitching in the worst way and Pineda can be a quality starter – to thinking the M's have picked up another guy who can't play anywhere – Montero doesn't look to be a fit as a major league catcher so he'll probably have to DH. But as the day wore on and I read more, listened to people I respect and thought about it in depth, it made sense. The Mariners couldn't just stand pat, they needed hitting desperately and they were going to have to pay some price to get it, whether monetary or with pitching. As it looks as if the big-name free agents aren't going to want to play in the Northwest – enjoy whatever warm-weather city you end up in Prince – then Jack Zduriencik did what he had to do. ... So what do you think of this trade? You can express your opinion in the above poll and you can add your comments. This will also give me an opportunity to see how much you folks care about the M's this time of year. ... If you need more information, we have links to stories in the Seattle Times and News Tribune, along with the Yankee perspective from the New York Times and Post.

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• Washington State: A fistful of news from Pullman yesterday, starting with Mike Leach finally confirming what everyone has been reporting – and digging for – the past few weeks: He has a football staff in place. Christian Caple, who was en route to Seattle for Sunday's basketball game, wrote this story and blog post from the front seat of his car. ... A tweet about Leach got my attention yesterday morning, so I followed the link to this story from Broadcasting and Cable Magazine. The news director Peter Berg is trying to sell a docu-series on Leach to HBO led to this CougCenter post. ... John Blanchette talked with and writes about June Daugherty and the WSU women today. The Cougars face a banged-up UW team today. ... Christian has this blog post on Lorenzo Romar's press conference yesterday, which also led to these stories in the Times and News Tribune. ... Steve Sarkisian talked some yesterday about his new coaching staff. ... Despite a pretty intense confrontation Thursday in Tucson, the Pac-12 decided not to impose further sanctions. ... Jon Wilner reacts to the recent college football news. ... We'll let Christian catch you up with other conference happenings today when he puts up his post.

• Gonzaga: Not a lot to pass along, though we can link Jim Meehan's post from yesterday. It's a sad fact of 2012 life there aren't a lot of newspapers covering WCC schools in depth anymore, especially in Los Angeles, home of Loyola (GU's opponent today) and Pepperdine. There was a time when the South Day Daily Breeze was a viable source of news on those schools – of course there was no Internet then, so you had to read them two or three days late by mail.

• Eastern Washington: We did find a story today in the Greeley paper on Northern Colorado, the Eagles' opponent, we were going to pass along. But alas it was a pay site and we couldn't access it. ... Jim Allen does have this blog post from yesterday.

• Idaho: We also were able to find a story on New Mexico State for you to peruse if you want. The Vandals and Aggies meet today.

• Whitworth: Jim Allen also covers the 10th-ranked Pirates and has this story about their 65-55 Friday night win over Pacific University.

• Preps: Greg Lee was out and about last night covering Ferris' win over Lewis and Clark in what wasn't the rivalry game – the Rubber Chicken will be later – but is a rivalry game every time the two South Hill schools meet.

• NFL: Can't leave you without some coverage of today's playoff games. ... The San Francisco 49ers and New Orleans Saints open the conference semifinals today with a matchup in the Bay Area. We ran down a few columns from the San Francisco newspapers for you to read. ... And though Tom Brady is arguably the best quarterback in the league, Tim Tebow is of course the hottest topic these days. What does the Bronco QB and his team have to do to upset Brady's Patriots?

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• That's it for this morning. We're going to be covering high school girls basketball (Central Valley at Lewis and Clark) later today for the S-R and we'll be tweeting some from the game. It's all part of the new full-service (and post-retirement) Vince Grippi experience. Until then ...



Vince Grippi
Vince Grippi is a freelance local sports blogger for spokesman.com. He also contributes to the SportsLink Blog.

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Vince Grippi's daily take on all things regional sports has been moved to our main sports section online. You can find a collection of these columns here.