published Wednesday, June 29th, 2011

5 at 10: South Carolina takes title, Braves lean on McCann and Georgia notifies the NCAA

We're still looking for a couple of mailbag questions for Friday. Let's get to it. From the "7-Up Stinks Studios," here we go...

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    Atlanta Braves' Brian McCann, center, has dirt thrown on him by teammate Martin Prado, right, after McCann hit a walk off two-run home run as Dan Uggla looks on in the eleventh inning of a baseball game against the Houston Astros Tuesday, May 17, 2011 in Atlanta. Atlanta won 3-1. (AP Photo/David Goldman)

Braves keep working late

Hey, is that Braves catcher Brian McCann entering the MVPBTASB (MVP before the all-star break) conversation? Why yes, yes it is. And a quick thanks to EC for the copyright freedom to use his acronym flexibility.

Anyhoo, the Atlanta Braves played their final late-night West Coast game of the regular season Tuesday, topping Seattle 5-4 in large part to McCann, who had a two-out, two-run single in the seventh that was the difference. He also threw out Adam Kennedy trying to take second on the back end of a double steal that stopped the Mariners' threat in the seventh.

As we have discussed all season, Atlanta's pitching has been stellar. And while Tommy Hanson allowed three runs (GASP!), the back end of the bullpen was lights out. Again. In fact, looking at the the ERAs of the five pitchers the Braves used Tuesday at it looks like a list of prices of kiddie meals at the Burger-Doodle. Hanson — 2.62; Sherill — 2.61; Proctor — 3.14; Venters — 1.26; Kimbrel — 2.70. And yes, those include small fries and a drink. Or even a juice box.

And hey, how about the power of positive thinking for Dan Uggla? As we mentioned Tuesday, the Mrs. 5-at-10 wants us to work on being a little nicer in our presentation, especially in regard to Mr. Uggla. Well, with a kinder, gentler 5-at-10 at work, Uggla promptly hit a 409-foot homer Tuesday night. Way to go. (Now we just have to find him a jersey that fits. Wow, that thing is painted on.)

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    South Carolina players, including the tournament's most outstanding player Scott Wingo, right, pose with the trophy after beating Florida 5-2 in Game 2 of the NCAA baseball College World Series best-of-three finals, to win the championship, in Omaha, Neb., Tuesday, June 28, 2011. (AP Photo/Eric Francis)

South Carolina repeats

That was fun. Seriously.

The College World Series concluded Tuesday night with South Carolina completing a CWS sweep and securing its second consecutive crown with a 5-3 win over Florida. The Gamecocks did not lose a game in this CWS. They have now won 11 straight CWS games and 16 straight NCAA tournament games — both are records.

Of the memories of this tournament, here are three:

— New bats = better baseball: The echoed "PING" of college baseball is as dead as high stirrup socks. Good riddance. The new bats have brought a new focus on pitching and defense, and each served South Carolina well. After allowing four runs in the first inning of their CWS opener against Texas A&M, South Carolina surrendered all of six runs in the next 50 innings in Omaha. USC also scored unearned runs in extra innings to secure wins over Virginia and Florida.

— The new stadium was awesome. Sure, Rosenblatt had earned a special place in CWS lore, but the new home looked stellar.

— As for Omaha, the city has embraced this event like few others. In fact, in the last decade, there was steady talk — on the NCAA side as well as the city's side — of Chattanooga forming a similar bond with the FCS title game as the one Omaha has with the CWS. Wow, since the FCS game moved to Frisco, Texas last December, that seems like long time ago, huh? Want to hear something crazy? The FCS championship football game has been gone for only one year. It feels like it left five years ago.

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    This April 20, 2009, file photo shows Tiger Woods during a news conference about the AT&T National golf tournament he hosts, in Bethesda, Md. Tiger Woods will speak to the media Friday, Feb. 19, 2010, from the clubhouse at the TPC Sawgrass, headquarters of the PGA Tour in Florida, for the first time since revelations about his infidelity, his agent says. (AP Photo/Rob Carr, File)

Tiger taking it slow

Tiger Woods said Tuesday he won't return to golf until he is completely healthy. He did not give any clues, however, as to when he would be returning to his old form on the golf course.

Has there been a bigger drop in three years? Barack Obama, maybe? Charlie Sheen?

After winning the 2008 U.S. Open on one leg, Tiger Woods was on top of the world. He was a billion-dollar entity and seemed destined to destroy every meaningful golf record ever.

Then the Thanksgiving wreck. And the whirlwind of stories of his infidelity. The apologies and the glares and the protests and the time away. Now the injuries, and Eldrick has played nine competitive holes in six weeks — remember his front-nine 42 at the Players before he WDed? — and golf has new names, faces and stars.

And Woods is not among the heavies. Who could have predicted that three years ago?

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    Georgia linebacker Jarvis Jones (29) Contributed Photo

This and That

— Holy Bugs Bunny’s 1-2-3 Strikes Your Out, how good has Phillies lefty Cliff Lee been? Sweet Knee Buckles, Lee just completed the month of June with a 0.21 ERA. On Tuesday, he threw his third consecutive shutout and he has the fourth lowest ERA in a month ever. Nolan Ryan and Cory Lidle each posted a 0.20 at various points in their very different careers. The top spot is occupied by Orel Hershiser, who posted the John Blutarsky Special — 0.00 in September 1988.

— We'll have more on this later, but something tells the 5-at-10 that the NFL wheels are finally starting to move. We've said from the beginning that the July 4 timeframe was what we expected, and, well, July 4 is Monday. We'll see.

— David Stern is hopeful that a deal can be reached with the NBA players before the current labor agreement expires Thursday. In other news, the 5-at-10 is hopeful the Braves are going to draft us and give us a $10 ka-jillion signing bonus. And we're hoping it will be tax-free. And we're hoping it will be here by Thursday. And we're hoping that it will rain beer. And we're hoping... you get the idea.

— Georgia has notified the NCAA about eligibility concerns of linebacker Jarvis Jones. Jones, the USC transfer who was expected to compete for a starting job, is now left in the limbo that is the NCAA timetable. We'll see.

— Floyd Mayweather Jr. said he may fight Manny Pacquiao after all. Mayweather, speaking at a news conference to discuss his bout with Victor Ortiz in September, told reporters, "I want to fight the best they got out there, not just [Pacquiao], the best they got out there, and if [Pacquiao's] on the list as one of the best guys, then absolutely." Uh, hello. Even Floyd the Barber knows Manny Pacquiao is "on the list as one of the best guys" in boxing. This needs to happen — sooner rather than later.

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    Atlanta Braves' Dan Uggla runs to first before being thrown out during a baseball game against the Florida Marlins in Miami, Tuesday, June 7, 2011. (AP Photo/Lynne Sladky)

Today's question

OK, we have to repeat BIspy's spin for Dan Uggla on the intro for Randy Watson in "Coming to America" — "And you know him as Officer Thirdout from "Who's on Base" episode of "That's My Braves Offense." Give it up for Dannnn Uggglllaaa!!!! That boy good. Yeah. Good and terrible."

Well played indeed — and we were able to share that and still remain in our kinder-and-gentler state of mind.

A friend of the show suggested that the next 5-at-10 contest be guessing the date that Dan Uggla would surpass the Mendoza Line (the mythical line above and below a .200 batting average, named for light-hitting shortstop Mario Mendoza). The first question is will he surpass the Mendoza Line? After that we can discuss some other possibilities.

Anyhoo, here today's question: Here at the halfway point (and we'll have more on the first half of the baseball season in Friday's mailbag), what are your expectations from this point forward for Dan Uggla (Officer Thirdout... that's gold Jerry, gold)?

Until tomorrow.

about Jay Greeson...

Jay was named the Sports Editor of the Times Free Press in 2003 and started with the newspaper in May 2002 as the Deputy Sports Editor. He was born and raised in Smyrna, Ga., and graduated from Auburn University before starting his newspaper career in 1997 with the Newnan (Ga.) Times Herald. Stops in Clayton and Henry counties in Georgia and two years as the Sports Editor of the Marietta (Ga.) Daily Journal preceded Jay’s ...

Comments do not represent the opinions of the Chattanooga Times Free Press, nor does it review every comment. Profanities, slurs and libelous remarks are prohibited. For more information you can view our Terms & Conditions and/or Ethics policy.
patrickd said...

So..... I don't see why everyone's hating on Uggla. He has 53 hits with 12 Homeruns, meaning almost 25% of his hits go out of the park. Who else can say that? He may be having the greatest season since back in the Bambino's era.

June 29, 2011 at 10:22 a.m.
bigbearzzz said...

love the positive news on the Dawgs this morning. What?! Sure! See, the dawgs are showing the rest of the coaches in the NCAA how to take care of binness the right way. And to that i say, kudos. See!!! I could have went aaaallll "there goes another player!!" approach but seeing as how i can almost smell the ocean air...i dont think nuttin is gonna get me down. Are those birds in the background chirping gleefully?

June 29, 2011 at 10:32 a.m.
jgreeson said...

Hey gang, love the positive vibes this morning.

Hey maybe David Stern and the NBA will get something worked out in the coming hours.

"Mr. Bluebird on my shoulder..."

— 5-at-10

June 29, 2011 at 10:44 a.m.
Eustice_Chase said...

Todays 5@10 question is what ?? I got side tracked with the " raining beer" can only hope i suppose...

I tell you, If Tiger Came back today...he would hands down win "Best Beard" in golf....

great Stat Pdavi- Uggla has truly been the All or Nothing kind of hitter this year....

anybody have Floyd Mayweather's Fax Number??? im gonna send him a top 5 list of the best Boxers in in boxing that he has not boxed in or around a boxing ring..

  1. Manny Pacquiao
  2. Congressman Manny Pacquiao
  3. Freddy Roach Trained- Manny Pacquiao
  4. Manny Pacquiao trained by Freddy Roach
  5. Manny " Little guys can pack a punch(line)" Pacquiao

its pretty cut and dry and if Mayweather wants to be the best he has to beat the best (available) and thats The Limosine riding jet flying kiss stealing whealing and dealin son of a gun (The Nature Boy WOO) Manny Pacquiao...

June 29, 2011 at 11:12 a.m.
bigbearzzz said...

Well Bippity-pobbity-boo back to you, Cinco! And as far as Uglla goes, I mean really, what other direction other up could the man possibly take!? There's not a doubt in my mind that he has to improve cause my mind can't fathom anybody being that bad and getting paid that much to be that bad playing any professional sport! So see! He's gonna be just fine! Just like the New Kids on the Block would say "He's....Hangin Tough!" Love those NKOTB!! And yes. he'll surpass the Menudo line. No doubt!

June 29, 2011 at 11:19 a.m.
jgreeson said...

EC —

Best top 5 list we've had on here in a long time. Well played indeed.

Best golf beards, huh? Assume we're not talking about the LPGA, right? (Kidding, kidding — mostly) Let us think on that. We'll start with Ryan Moore in our Wolfpack — he looks a little like Zach G. anyway. Hey is this place beeper friendly?

And we've found that any time we can find a way to reference Ric Flair, it's wise to do so. You can't be first, but you can be next. Woooooo.

Oso —

Was that a New Kids reference? Wow.

Agree that there's no place to go but up with Uggla. In fact, Uggla has a growing fan club out there, and the charter member better be Jason Heyward, because the J-Hey kid is hitting all of .228, and if it was not for Uggla's un-worldly struggles, the main question around Bravesville would be, "What's wrong with Heyward... is he the next Franceour?"



June 29, 2011 at 11:41 a.m.
bigbearzzz said...

Heyward's been in the league, what, two years now? IMO, still too early for me to label this kid great. But great athletes find that way to rise to the top. I mean look at Jordan battling the flu, McNabb playin with a broke leg, Favre on Monday night after his father passed, LeBron playin....ummm...Lebron workin...(mom's voice: If you dont have anything nice to say....)OK that's enough examples for now. Yeah sure Heyward came on hot, but in all fairness, was he as good as all the hype gave him credit for? The best revealer of all time itself. Too early for me to call on him still. And yes! NKOTB and Menudo all in one post! And I HATE NKOTB!!! Isnt that great?!

June 29, 2011 at 11:58 a.m.
Eustice_Chase said...

Heyward is just dealing with the struggles of getting a large pay check...and hopefully shooing away all the glad handed yes man from his personal space... hopfully he finds a way to deal with the expectations, and produces ...

June 29, 2011 at 12:23 p.m.
jgreeson said...

Oso —

The excitement of the Florida beaches has brought out your inner-wise bear. "The best revealer of all things... is time itself." Outstanding Oso. Or is it Mr. Miyagi-Oso. Well played indeed.

EC —

And while we're on the Braves offense, has anyone else noticed that this group strikes out more than the Physics Club mixing with the cheerleaders? Seriously. Uggla averages right at a K a game and Eric Hinske is striking out once in every 3.5 ABs. Not good.

— 5-at-10

June 29, 2011 at 12:48 p.m.
Eustice_Chase said...

Its bad, or is the pitching just that good in MLB ???

Sidenote.. speaking of Mr. Miyagi, The Wife and I were recently at a local NWA wrestling of the wrasslers comes out to.."You're the best...around" know the diddy from Karate Kid..right??? Well I turn to the wife signing it loud and proud, and she says.."what is this"..seriously..she has never seen Karate Kid...ever!!! lets just say that if the chance of rain puts a damper on our July 4th plans....there will be a Karate Kid marathon at the EC Dojo !!!!

June 29, 2011 at 1:07 p.m.
bigbearzzz said...

I jus wanna know which wrassler came out to that song! And NWA...really?!?! They're still around?! And as far as the pitching goes....D. Lee... 021 era...yeah...its pretty good. But to truly see where the Braves stand, Cinco, can we get a team Batting average and see where it stacks up with the rest of MBL at the break? That will let us know if its the pitching of the league or just how bad our bats are!

June 29, 2011 at 1:14 p.m.
BIspy4 said...

Just want to be able to help the ballclub. Good Lord willin' and the creek don't rise. Watched most of Mr. Lee's dominance of Los Sox. That wasn't Cliff Lee. It was Bruce Lee, not pitching off-the-table deuces but numchucks that render batters unconscious. And how long before McCann breaks down like Boxer and Clover. Dude is seriously carrying what passes for the Braves offense right now. For the question of the day - better napping TV: NASCAR, non-majors golf ... or women's world cup soccer? Oh, and at physics club, we discuss properties of physics, you know. For the record, my cousins have a picture of one Donnie Wahlberg eating cereal at their breakfast table some 35 years ago. They grew up with Mark and Donnie in the same neighborhood in Boston.

June 29, 2011 at 1:35 p.m.
jgreeson said...

Careful, research coming. Don't say you weren't warned:

Braves NL Ranks (out of 16 NL teams) Average: .236 — 14th (only San Diego and Washington are worse) On-base percentage: .305 — 15th (only Washington is worse) HRs: 85 — T-3rd Runs: 316 — T-10th Strikeouts: 614 — 4th most (behind S.D., Washington and Arizona) SBs: 23 — 16th

Now how do those numbers translate to the second-best record in the NL. Everyone together, "Pitching!"

EC —

If we need to do a rain dance so you and the Mrs. have time to watch Daniel-Son, well, we're ready and willing. "Put him in a body bag Johnny!"

Question, where does Johnny Lawrence rank as a villain? Worse than Mr. Vernon in "Breakfast Club" or worse than Clubber Lang? Discuss — and Mrs. EC, you can discuss after you have watched "Karate Kid."

BIspy —

Good Lord willin' you have always helped the ball club. McCann's about to get a serious run of "see if you can hit this 52-foot curveball" as the rest of the NL suddenly decides, "Hey, let's make someone other than Brian McCann beat us."

And it's been a while since we have studied the baseball rulebook, but wouldn't throwing numchunks at batters been illegal? Though, they've made a lot of changes in the law lately. Anyhoo.

How were those Physic Club meetings? You load up, you party?

— 5-at-10

June 29, 2011 at 1:44 p.m.
bigbearzzz said...

HEY HEY HEY!!! NO RAIN DANCES!! Only if said rain dance can centralized over the local area or EC's home will said dance be permitted.

The stats above prove it (as provided by our stat guru himself), the braves are as bad offensively as Sarah Palin's new movie "The Undefeated". As far as villains cant really put him up there that high cause he goes all soft at the end...i just blew the ending...dont let Mrs EC read this!! I say he trails Mr. Vernon by a nose. But i have to admit worse villain by far, The Joker from the Dark Knight....Heath Ledgers finest performance if you ask me. Over all best Villain, period, hands down.

June 29, 2011 at 2:08 p.m.
Eustice_Chase said...

Hey WOMAN! Hey, why don't you bring yo pretty little self over to my apartment, lemme show you how a real man trains.

Those are words of a true Villan...even though... the smooch that Johnny lays on the female actress in Karate Kid that allows the sequence of events that makes Daniel Son the laughing stock of the "Red Fez Annual Gala" was a close second

Clubber Lang was the epitome of Evil...he even dissed Apollo in the opening introductions of the First Rocky vs CLubber battle...not to mention he pushed down Mickey! (not the Mouse)!!!

June 29, 2011 at 2:13 p.m.
jgreeson said...

Oso —

Ledger's Joker was off-the-charts. This is morefun villain, rather than crazy, killer villain. (Although Clubber did push Mickey (not the Mouse) and that could have helped cause his death.)

And don't worry, the 5-at-10 rain dance ("$50 bucks says I can get us a rain-out") is site-specific. You're good.

EC —

That's a great line. Being of our age (We're a man. WE'RE 40!), we had the chance to see Rocky III in the theater was great. It was not as great, as the flow of patriotism that was the Rocky IV movie experience, but still.

And sir, that actress was a young Elizabeth Shue, who went on to "Cocktail" fame.

What about the Sheriff in "First Blood" played by Brian Dennehy?

— 5-at-10

June 29, 2011 at 2:30 p.m.
Eustice_Chase said...

Yes Elizabeth Shue...what a fox...and her work in Cocktail..well sir it gave me "the hippy hippy shakes"

Brian Dennehy, that man was MAD pure MAD!!! What kind of law enforcement officer takes a Veteran on a ride to the outskirts of town to tell them they are not welcome!!!! All I can say is...John J gave that Sheriff what was coming to him!...but my question for you is...Was John J lucky he had a run in with Brian Dennehy and not Buford Pusser ???

June 29, 2011 at 3 p.m.
bigbearzzz said...

Helped cause his death? Really? He is the sole reason that Mickey (not the mouse)is no longer with us today. Clubber....pure evil. And Elizabeth Shue...she can be my babysitter anyday...(back in the younger days i mean) And if were goin to villain's in action movies we have to include Iceman and what about the bad DA dude who tried to shut down the Ghostbusters who got creamed with marshmallow at the end....and heaven forbid we forget the principal from Ferris Buller's...i mean...hello. Of course then we get into Scify villains like DV and Khan and Arnold (T1 only) ...ok im done for now...OHHH...last one...Biff..he was the villain in all three movies...heckova run there Biff....

June 29, 2011 at 3:06 p.m.
jgreeson said...

EC —

Hard to know whether John Jay would have gone "Over the Top" against Buford Pusser (or even Buford T Justice for that matter). We do know that Dennehey had it coming.

Oso —

Very nice, Nice, NICE work with the "Babysitting" line. And winner, winner on Ed Rooney — Ferris Bueller's principal ("He makes you look like a fool, is what he does, Ed.").

We may have to break this down in Thursday's question: Best movie villains of all time; best 1980s movie villains; best horror movie villains; best drama villains; best sci-fi villains. Thoughts?

— 5-at-10

June 29, 2011 at 3:14 p.m.
bigbearzzz said...

i have to quickly say...that the secretary was prolly one of the funniest things about that movie...she was great! You know Thursdays are pretty crazy..and i can see that list turing into a great discussion day...

June 29, 2011 at 3:17 p.m.
BIspy4 said...

How bout Elisabeth Shue from Leaving Las Vegas? Ok, ok, I'll try to keep it family-oriented here.

June 29, 2011 at 6:23 p.m.
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