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Tim Kurkjian with us now on ESPN Radio, if you want to talk to him with baseball called seven eight six four five, six, four eight three, seven, 10. When it comes to the things that have distorted the structural integrity of the game runners on second in extra innings, seven inning game, 60 game season, which is the one that bothers you the most. Well, they all do then, but in in on all of them for this year, only then will adjust hopefully, and go back to the way the game is supposed to be played next year.
However, the runner on second to start the 10th inning is what troubles me the most. And again, I'm way in the minority here. I'm 63. This is the only thing I've ever like to do. But some of the best and greatest games I've ever covered have been extra inning games. When they go 18 innings, it takes a lot of work, but sometimes that's the best game that you can possibly see. And if it is such a great rule, then why aren't we going to use it during the postseason?
But we're going to use it during the regular season. And what it's also done is it has shown how incapable so many of our great players are at moving a runner along to get him in from second base. If you don't hit it out of the ballpark these days, you don't score many runs. What this is showing is our hitters are very good at hitting a ground ball. The second baseman moving that guy to third and hit the fly ball to score run again against pitching that we see today.
I don't know anyone ever gets a hit anymore, but I think this is going to work against the game, not because it's against everything the game stands for. Let's play until somebody wins, but it it's going to show some of the inadequacies of our hitters who have one approach and one approach only, and that's to hit it out of the park.
All right. Settle down, please. Stop yelling at us. Chris Cody disagreed with almost everything you said. So what do you say to the young person, Tim, who says the following? Go ahead, Chris. Go ahead and say all the things you were shouting at the Zoome.
Well, I was laughing at Tim loving extra inning games because I feel like he's the only one that loves a good sixteen inning game. But I have to admit, Tim, as somebody who loves baseball too, I'm enjoying seven inning games during a doubleheader when you can get both games in in like a four and a half an hour period. And I like I just like some of these rules. I like the runner on second in extra innings. So it's just it's just interesting to hear you say.
All right, Chris, you're in the majority here. I'm not disputing that most people like the new rules. Most people are going to clamor for seven inning doubleheaders next year. Also, all I'm trying to say is this is not softball. This is not American Legion. This is the big leagues is the highest level. And I think we should play nine innings for all the games, but not this year, not when the Cardinals have to play 55 games in 44 days.
They're going to need all the help they can get and seven inning doubleheaders will help him.
So next season, let's say, after this season, that baseball decides to make all these changes permanent, will you cry? No, I'm not going to cry, I'm going to adjust like I adjusted to the D.H and to expanded playoffs and the wild card, I wasn't for all that stuff either. But I'm adaptable. I love the game no matter what. Let's just think about a guy who pitches a no hitter or a perfect game for seven innings.
All right. He doesn't get credit for a seventh inning no hitter or seventh inning perfect game. Doesn't even get credit for it. That's what happens when you play seven in the game. All right.
Let me try to get the mission out of you here, OK? Because we are excited for Marlins, the Braves now. We were playing 162. No one would be excited for more on the Braves, but because it's 60 and all the show has ever said is baseball needs to create more urgency. We pitch some zany ideas, some wacky ideas, all in the spirit of there being more urgency. These games obviously feel a lot more important because we're only playing 60 of that.
The season needs to be shortened. Can we at least agree on that? These games all feel very important because there's only 60 precious games. I mean, is that fair?
Yes, of course. Look, I understand the mad dash to the finish. Every game matters. Every team has a chance. I understand it. And part of me likes it. I just think the best barometer of how good you are is when you play 162 games or like they used to, 154 games. I'm just fearful if we start accepting all of these things, then we are going to have a trampoline on the warning track like you guys want, and we're going to have a whatever, a bonus hitter.
So Mike Trout said that 10 times in the game instead of four. I'm just not sure that's the way to do it.
Does Dave Gettleman look like a guy who says bada bing, ba boom when things go right?
I think it does.
Andrew does. Andrew Luck does Andrew Luck look like the guy who picks up his Starbucks order and then while flashing an ear to ear grin, says, thanks a lot to say.
I was going throw him off the road yesterday and never heard it.
What made you almost drive off the road yesterday was a good trip.
It does look like a train conductor.
Who else does those terrible twos so funny?
Does Adam Silver look like a butter knife?
Does all right? Yeah, he looks like a French fry. Yes. The lone French fry in a basket of onion rings. Yes. Does urban does Urban Meyer look like a guy who says don't spend it all in one place as he slips the 17 year old valet one dollar bill to park his Lamborghini?
Who does Adam Silver look like?
The villain under a mask on a Scooby Doo episode titled The Ghost Dentist?
All right, stay there. Tim, we've got more questions for you. I've got more baseball questions for you. And we've got some callers as well. Seven, eight, six, four, five, six, four, eight, three, seven. We come back with Tim Kurkjian after this. Tim, I know baseball is really, really hard, but how do you explain Jose Altuve going into this season, being an MVP player and now he's hitting 187.
His ops is under 600. He struck out 17 times in the last 17 games. These are damning numbers if you want to make the argument that he's not a cheater. Yeah, I understand what you're trying to say here, Dan, but sorry is a really hard game. It's the ultimate beauty of it is that great players who got fifteen hundred hits in an area over three hundred in their major league careers can be this bad. No NBA jump shooter goes the first 10 games of the season without making a three.
That's how hard the game is. I watched Altuve. I did his game the other night, Monday night against the Giants. He had three of the worst swings I have ever seen him take. He was completely overmatched. He's never overmatched. That pitch up in the strike zone that he Tomahawks that he crushes, he's not even getting to it. It is an amazing drop off by him this year. And yet next week he might get sixteen hits in a week.
That's how good he is. So to say, well, he doesn't know what's coming anymore, therefore he can't hit anymore. And those first eight years, whatever it was, are a mirage. That that's just not fair.
Kyle, you're on with Tim Kurkjian. Go ahead. Would you rather take a 95 mile an hour pitch off the back or not watch baseball for a year? Love you got. I weighed in at 140 this morning, so I think if I got hit by Gareth Cole in the back, it would go through my entire body, come out of my chest and kill him. Yes, that's right.
I'm going to have to say I'm not going to watch baseball for a year because I think Coalwood would put a hole through my entire torso if he hit me with 100 in the middle of the back.
Put it on the pole, please. Tony Wood, Garrett Cole put a hole in Tim Kurkdjian torso if he threw a baseball at his back. Mark, you're on with Tim Kurkjian on ESPN Radio. Go ahead, Mark.
Hey, Tom, what are your thoughts on the White Sox and their young core players? And do you think Rick Renteria is the right manager for this team moving forward? Yeah, he's a really good teacher.
People don't know much about him. He doesn't have great charisma. It doesn't make you laugh. But he's a really good teacher and that's what the White Sox need. And yes, I love the corps of young players that they have. Anderson Moncada and Luis Robert is a joke. He is so unbelievably physically gifted with speed and strength. And that team is going to be hell to play in a very short amount of time. So, yes, I think Renteria is there for a while because he's been there to help move the process along.
Yes or no? Tim Kurkjian is still, after all these years of shifts, bothered by line drives up the middle. That used to be obvious base hits that are now caught by a shifting second baseman on the wrong side of the second base back. Yes or no?
I am not troubled by this. It does confuse me when I say, boy, the shortstop made a great play there and it was actually the second baseman because he was playing on that side of the field. That is what bothers me. I don't like all the shifting, but I understand all the shifting. It's the one sabermetrics number that really works. You look at say, look where this guy hits it all the time. And again, our hitters are so amazingly skilled and talented, it's about time they try to figure out how to beat a shift by hitting it in another direction.
That is not easy to do. I'm not suggesting for a second to make that huge adjustment when Max Scherzer pitching, but I don't have any sympathy for someone who has a line drive up the middle or a hard grounder up the middle when there are three guys playing up the middle.
Can you explain to me, Tim, when it changed, we were talking about this earlier in the week, the opposite field, home run. And just I'm watching baseball these days. And every guy I mean, every real Muto can go opposite field, 400 rows deep, opposite field. And I wonder when that change, because coming up, watching baseball, Tim, you remember it was only the very strongest of guys who could go on opposite field on a home run.
And now everyone can dance real. Muchos a catcher who's really strong. We have little second baseman that are going 20 rows up to right field, has a right handed hitter. And that's how this all started to change for me after the steroid era when everyone hit all these homers, everyone got paid and all the hitters said, all right, let's go. Then in came the launch angle and everyone said, hey, if I can get it airborne here, I can hit a bunch of homers and I'm going to get paid if I do that.
So that's when the pitchers made the adjustment that we're get killed here every night. So we have to come up with more velocity, greater secondary stuff. And that's leads to the game we are today where people either strike out or hit a home run or walk. And there's not a whole lot in between. Timmy, the Marlins for real.
Oh, come on.
No, Stu, it's an amazing story. They use nine different starting pitchers for the first nine games. That's never happened. They used twenty seven pitchers for the first nine games. That's never happened. It's amazing how well they've done. But they can't keep this up. They're not going into the playoffs. But God bless them for playing this well so far.
Does Steve Clifford look like a high school principal watching in horror as a talent show performance crosses the line, does Quin Snyder look like an evil prison guard in a ninety nineteen nineties Steven King movie?
Does Terry Stotts look like the dad who tells you to have his daughter home by nine and then jokingly says, All right, fine. Nine 30, does Randy Scott look like he's in an a cappella group?
That's so true and so right. It is aspect, yeah.
Does Jerry Glanville look like he spent his life performing a rural exorcism, the last of which nearly killed him?
Does Mike Budenholzer look like a stand up comedian who shows up with a type seven minutes only to find out he's been booked for 15 years?
And finally, does Mike Tomlin look like an assistant principal in charge of security at a high school who takes his job away too seriously while using the handle action? Jackson on his walkie talkie.
We'll talk to him next week. Tim.
Is Memphis' going to mess it all up strogatz because that's not the series we want to see, right? I mean, I'm guessing that the audience wants to see Melo and Lillard as the Lakers first round match up.
I mean, they get Blissett eventually will want to see Jomaa in the playoffs because he's fun to watch. He's a fantastic player, but I think for this season a I don't think Memphis can beat that team two times in a row and B I think we all want to see that series. LeBron Anthony Davis, Lillard, Carmelo Anthony and C.J. McCollum on the same court playing each other.
So are you going to get CJ McCollum for stupidity like he's your buddy? He wants to, he clearly wants the broadcast with you. Are you going to get him to break down some playoff basketball if they get it?
We are. What we've left it with CJ where they can win and beat Memphis to get to the playoffs that we are trying to have him and Damian Lillard on Stupidity together before the Blazers and Lakers series. So that's what I am angling for would see because there's always an angle, especially after I've had you on three times and I need to spice it up a little bit.
You know, I'm saying Rob Schneider joining us today in the noon Eastern hour because Strogatz is trying to get closer to Chris Rock and and the people in his world.
I'm trying to get us closer to Chris Rock and Adam Sandler and that entire cruise. I think it'd be fun for the show. Now, I don't think today is the day we asked Rob Schneider because he's he's only been on once. This will be his second appearance. I think we ask him back on Monday. And Monday would be the day where I would start to go away and ask, are you going to get Sammara? Like, let's go here, you know?
So third date if you got the way. This works with guests, his third date, there better be some lovemaking. That's that's how that one works. One of the tensions that we have around here, one of the many one of the longest standing is still has his soccer is boring take. And Mike Ryan is annoying. Soccer guy Mike Ryan wants so badly to talk about.
Not what what about my passion for soccer is annoying. I look, you may just call me annoying, and I'm proving that right now, but I think I'm very welcoming. I'm not the soccer zealot that tries to think that he's better than you. And give that off. I want you to give the world's game a shot. Oh, OK.
I'm sorry. Regardless, you wanted to talk about MLS. Well, not a whole lot of people are talking MLS.
Well, I'm a little upset that you guys didn't congratulate the MLS is back champion Portland Timbers. In fact, it was missing from the updates. And thank God stuff like that changes come Monday. Christine Lacy will make sure that you know, that the timbers advance. That is something that we neglect around here because Stewart can't do his job correctly and it doesn't live up to the standards of ESPN.
Mike doesn't like to hear himself talk about soccer. He doesn't have a soccer podcast called Miked Up.
I didn't come up with the name and thank you for not giving the full name. I mean, you know, I can't do it. I mean, if you're going to give me a plug, give it a full plug either way.
So the MLS is back. Back because I don't know if you notice the bubble. It seemed like it was on shaky ground at the beginning because FC Dallas and Nashville got booted from the bubble because they were poison and so many positives. So they got booted from the bubble, but it was all intake folks. Bubbles work, apparently. Then Nashville and FC Dallas got right to action, right to playing in their home stadiums with fans. They played each other, the two covid teams.
So they're the ones that start this off. And I don't know if you've seen all these other bubble match ups, but the anthem and the kneeling, it's accepted. It's we've come so far from Colin Kaepernick losing his job and becoming a political story in the biggest sports story, maybe arguably of all time. For years now, everyone's kneeling. It's it's a crazy end to the Colin Kaepernick documentary, but they're doing this in empty arenas with no fans.
We finally got a taste of how fans are going to react to this. And I was foolish. I assume that this was the new normal. But did you guys see what the reaction was in Dallas? No, I understand Texas, predominantly a red state now up for grabs. Demos are changing.
Their booed a cup thrown onto the field, totally caught the players off guard. Dan, totally. And it'll be really fascinating to see certain football teams have come out and said limited capacity. Other football teams have said Jerry Jones says, I want fans there. Yeah, other football teams have said no capacity. I think the Jags have 25 percent. I imagine in Big D they're going to have some fans there. Be fascinating to see how this plays out, because then you'll have people kneeling, trying to respectfully protest and then people actually being rude during a national anthem in.
Booing and throwing stuff, throwing throwing garbage on the field during the anthem is probably more disrespectful than kneeling before a flag.
Soccer fans generally veer politically a little bit more progressive. So this was a surprise. But it's also Texas. But American football, the NFL, if this stuff happens and they have fans there, it could get potentially ugly. And I don't know if you're familiar with Hank Williams Jr. and his hit song, Take a Knee, Take a Hike.
Wait a minute. I was teasing this 24 hours ago and what a great name for a country song. I'm sorry. I can't even I got I can't even hate on this. I can't I know many of you think I'm liberal. DARD I take a knee, take a hike is exactly what Hank Williams Jr. has to be saying. That should be our Monday Night Football anthem. That should be that should be what we need to bring him back and just have him perform.
Take a knee. Take a hike.
Yes. Take a knee. Take a hike from Hank Williams.
Yes. These are the same artists.
Such a great title for the same artist that does has them mentioned the Monday Night Football theme and who could forget such great hits as if the South would have won from Hank Williams Jr.. That was way back, you know, way back. But now and I don't know if this is true because the websites are a little suspect, but conservatives are convinced that Hank Williams Jr. has pulled his music from Monday Night Football. Sort of breaking up with you first.
Now take a knee, take a hike that was actually back in twenty eighteen.
Every time you say this, take a knee, take a hike is actually an older jam. But I was sitting by these people that were congregating over dinner and they were like twelve feet away. And I overheard like, good for Hank Williams Jr. did. And have you heard that new. There are older people so they weren't using Bangar, but if they could have they would have overtaken you. Take a hike. Good for him. And these were Saints fans, mind you, they were wearing Saints.
So I think we're in for quite the show if anthem protests. And I know some head coaches. Bill O'Brien in the Lone Star State says he's going to take a knee. Might he also have to take a hike?
Dan, I cannot wait to analyze this. I would like to create our own spoof songs that have lyrics for Take a Knee, Take a Hike, because this is these are exactly the words that should be on Hank Williams Jr. Tombstone. Those like those words in terms of what do I stand for? I'll tell you what I stand for. It's not just take a knee, take a hike, but I'm going to put it on my belt buckle. How about that?
My every belt buckle is going to have to take a need, take a hike, because that's what I'm about. When you get near my nether region, my 70 year old nether region, my I don't want America to change. America needs to keep looking like me. Nether regions. I mean, it's very it's a very clever title also, because when we we usually see in that sport at the end of games, someone takes a hike and then takes a knee.
So this flips everything upside down.
That is so good. So Dominique Foxworth is asking a question here, God, and I'd like to know what you think the answer is to this question, that he's talking about college football. He's talking about college sports, and he says he doesn't know the answer to this question, but he's saying, I wonder if college football decision makers would feel differently about having a season if they got paid in scholarship and had to expose themselves to covid as much as the players do.
He says he's not sure of the answer, but he's pretty sure they'd be more likely to cancel the season. If they were looking at it through that prism, they'd be more likely to cancel the season. Of course, if you're thinking of this as your own kids. Stewart, we were making the joke, right, that the SEC should be known as somebody else's children conference or some expendable children conference. And I don't know. As we talk about it, what is the OK number of tests to come back positive, because these bubbles do seem to work, but football Foushee has told us and I know that we're in this area now, it's one of the annoying things happening in America where we are.
And we've been doing this one for a while where we have either been discounting or disregarding expertise. It's like one of the things in America that has been most cheapened here. If you watch newsrooms throughout the the first scene in NEWSROOM, Aaron Sorkin, a great television writer, probably the greatest ever foretold.
Everything this was eight or nine years ago, foretold everything in the first eight minutes. You should check out the first eight minutes of NEWSROOM on You Tube so that you can see what's happening in this country in terms of discounting and disregarding expertise.
But we've arrived at a time where we're the worst country in the world when it comes to covid. And it's at least in part because we in Brazil are the few that have turned it into politics instead of health. We've turned it into the politics of not believing in science and everything else. But the question I wanted to ask you is, I don't know how famous the person needs to be, and I don't know how direct the link needs to be to covid.
But FSU has a basketball player, had a basketball player excuse me, Michael Ojo, who?
Is 20 or was 27 years old. Forgive me for the past tense, present tense, I'm not doing that on purpose, but he's very young.
And he got covid. And then he had a heart attack and died. And I'm wondering how famous the person needs to be, what needs to happen here? Like what is the what is the trigger that needs to happen for these administrators who are making these money grabs and doing these politics moves that we're doing with football? Like, what's the thing that needs to happen? Wherever he would be, everyone would be like, you know what? Shut it down.
Shut it down.
Now, what happened to Michael or Joe? I mean, that can happen and just, you know, daily life away from basketball. But I would say, yes, someone a player dying because of covid on college football's watch would be something, I think that.
Does it have to be a known player, though? Because look what you did and I don't blame you for doing it like but there are heart links. And I know and I was asking you the specifics of the question, how direct do I have to make the link? Because this is a young person who was otherwise healthy. Yes. That could have happened to him either under other circumstances, but also he tested positive. And next thing you know, he's done his life's over.
Right. I still kind of just when when I hear Jim Harbaugh trot out the stats and he's right, by the way, that it's a safer environment at the University of Michigan with their doctors around, with adults around, it's hard to dispute and argue those facts. I think they're asking if Trevor Lawrence were happy. You know, I don't know, man. I could crack over to get really sick and passed away during. Obviously, that's that's what I'm asking.
Is this grading scale like is it how excellent you are? How famous or just your dad?