Armadillo: Thursday's six-pack
Some NFL knowledge to consider, since the season is only four months away. Hey, its never too early to start preparing........
-- Over last five years, worst pointspread teams in September: Rams (6-14), Carolina (6-13-1), Dolphins (5-11-3), San Diego (6-12-2).
-- On flip side, Chargers are 15-5 vs spread in last 20 December games.
-- Best pointspread teams in September: Titans (13-6), Packers (12-6-2), Cowboys (12-7-1), Cardinals (12-8), Tampa Bay (12-8).
-- Dallas Cowboys covered six of their last 20 December games.
-- Other than Chargers, December's best pointspread teams: Colts (14-7), Packers (13-7), Eagles (13-8), Giants (13-8).
-- Other than Dallas, the worst pointspread teams in December: Tampa Bay (6-14-1), Denver (7-14), Minnesota (8-13), Bears/Rams (8-12-1).
Armadillo: Thursday's List of 13: Doing some thinking out loud.........
13) Oklahoma City trailed the Lakers 75-68 with 2:08 left, but LA never scored again, as they coughed up a 77-75 decision to the Thunder that gives Oklahoma City a 2-0 series lead. OC had an 18-5 edge in fast break points, but a couple key turnovers in last 2:00 were fatal for the Lakers.
12) Lookalikes: The little lawyer on TNT's Franklin & Bash and Oklahoma City coach Scott Brooks.
11) Did you ever see the commercial Robert Wagner does for those reverse mortgages on TV, designed for older people? All well and good, but Wagner became famous for playing con men in two TV series, It Takes a Thief and Switch. Not exactly the kind of guy who inspires trust by investors.
10) Greedy bastard update: Gas was $4.09 a gallon on May 6; noticed that it dropped to $4.05 as I went to the airport on May 7, and now it is $3.99, so the bastards have gotten a little less greedy. Just wait until Memorial Day weekend, the unofficial start of summer. It'll be back over $4.00.
Gas is roughly $3.82 or $3.83 a gallon out in Las Vegas.
9) Yu Darvish is 6-1, 2.60 for the Rangers; looks like he could be the best of the Asian pitchers to come overseas and play ball.
8) Tampa Bay Rays are 16-2 in their last 18 games against the AL East.
7) Too bad this game with division rival Boston drew only 20,843 fans. It won't be long before the Rays will be elsewhere, unless attendance picks up. A third major league team is going to wind up in New Jersey, sitting next to the new Giants' Stadium in the Meadowlands complex.
6) Baseball is messed up sometimes; Clay Buchholz lost Wednesday, giving up two runs in five IP; it was one of his best starts all season. He had an 8.67 RA before this game, but had a 4-1 record. Go figure.
5) Until the first inning Wednesday night, their 37th game, no Met batter had swung at a 3-0 pitch all season. Hard to believe, but Lucas Duda got a hit on their first 3-0 swing of the season.
4) How entrenched are the hideous Wilpons, owners of the Mets? They've been given next summer's All-Star Game. Wonder if they had to move the fences in to get the game? Would've been a lousy Home Run Derby if the fences were still where they were last year. Lot of people think the Home Run Derby has become more popular than the All-Star Game itself.
3) Baltimore Orioles won their last six road games, with Adam Jones first player in 14 years (Mark McGwire) to hit game-winning homers after the 15th inning in two games in the same season.
2) Did you see Toronto 3B Brett Lawrie fire his helmet down Tuesday, after he was called out on strikes? He's very lucky he didn't get a 15-20 game suspension; the helmet landed close to umpire Bill Miller, then hit him in the leg after it bounced. He threw it down really close to the umpire, and deserves a hell of a lot more than a 4-game suspension.
No way is the umpires' union happy with that slap on the wrist.
1) On May 16, four of the top 11 stories on ESPN's home page were about football, either college or pro. An awful lot for the offseason.