Wednesday’s blog entry looking at the Sweet 16 was apparently a work of fiction and has little to do with reality. At least Wichita State won and I didn’t actually say Miami would be Marquette I just hinted at it. I can’t even come up with an excuse for why I picked Indiana.
After two games that went right down to the wire last weekend Marquette had a much easier time beating Miami on Saturday. Marquette will now play Syracuse who picked apart an Indiana team who played a horrible game except for a brief spurt of energy to start the second half. Otherwise, Syracuse was totally in control. Just because I’m tired of picking against both teams I will say that either Syracuse or Marquette will win that game.
Out in Los Angeles Ohio State escaped with a victory over Arizona in the only game of the evening with any drama as Ohio State came from behind with a last second shot to move on to face Wichita State who totally dominated a very over matched La Salle team. This sets up a game that I am really looking forward to as Wichita State has proven they can play with anyone and are an outstanding defensive team while Ohio State proved they can play under intense pressure and can hit the big shot when they need to. This could be the game of the day for Saturday.
The St. Louis Cardinals wrapped up their spring training by signing Adam Wainright to a long term contract which will likely keep him in a Cardinals uniform for the remainder of his career. With the issues Chris Carpenter faces with his arm which will likely keep him from ever pitching again it was very important that the Cardinals get Wainright locked in to be that veteran presence for the pitching staff. Wainright has leadership ability and can give you quality starts just about everytime he takes the mound so this was a great move by the Cardinals in my opinion.
Spring training also saw any questions about whether or not Jaime Garcia’s shoulder was fully healed get answered as Garcia had a really good spring and his last outing was outstanding. Jake Westbrook and Lance Lynn both struggled at times but appear to be rounding into form and Shelby Miller emerged as the fifth starter at least for now with Joe Kelly waiting if Miller falters.
Third baseman David Freese begins the year on the DL with back tightness, Matt Holiday is nursing a sore rib cage but should be ready for opening day and Carlos Beltran is still recovering from a fractured toe but will almost definitely be in the lineup for opening day. The Cardinals begin the season Monday in Arizona and then head to San Francisco before returning home for their home opener on April 8.
As I have mentioned previously the Kansas City Royals have had an excellent spring training and set a franchise record for the most spring training wins. The Royals are scoring runs in bunches and have several hitters who have put up very lofty numbers this spring. After struggling early the pitching staff have collectively pitched much better as of late and there is a sense of optimism going into this season which the Royals fans haven’t had for quite a while. Kansas City also opens the season Monday in Chicago against the White Sox where it is expected to be in the upper 20’s to low 30’s.
At least for the next couple of days spring sports can go on as scheduled and it will actually feel like spring. Truman State baseball and softball have been going on for a while with the softball team getting off to a quick start this season. After some early season struggles the baseball team has played better as of late.
All Kirksville High School sports have started with the girls soccer team, boys and girls track team, boys tennis and baseball all having been able to get in a couple of games over the past three weeks. If I’m not mistaken all the sports including boys golf are set to have at least one game at home next week if the weather says it’s OK.
We’ll be back on Monday with a review of all the weekend’s sports action. Please check out all the blogs on this site and thanks as always for your support of this one. The Facebook page for this blog is coming along slowly but we will get there at some point.
Have a wonderful weekend!