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Frankly Frankel: June 20, 2015

20 Jun

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Alex Rodriguez’s 3,00th hit is a home run, the Warriors are your NBA Champions, eight Kansas City Royals are now slated to start in the All-Star game, and Pablo Sandoval goes on Instagram during games. This is Frankly Frankel on this Saturday, June 20, 2015.

  • I begin this week with Alexander Emmanuel Rodriguez who joined the exclusive 3,000 hit club Friday night by hitting a first pitch Justin Verlander fastball into the right field seats for hit number 3,000.
  • A-Rod joins Wade Boggs and Derek Jeter as the only players in history to have their 3,000th hit be a home run. Ironically, A-Rod’s 2,000th hit was also a home run (July 21, 2006).
  • I happened to be at the game on Thursday night where A-Rod had two chances for hit number 3,000, but flied out to right field and walked in those two plate appearances (No, I was not one of the fans chanting obscene language at Marlins pitcher Sam Dyson for walking A-Rod on four pitches, but I was not happy). I was really hoping I would be able to say I was there when A-Rod hit number 3,000. But hey, you can’t have it all.
  • I also saw the “person” who caught the home run happens to be notorious for catching balls. The man’s name is Zack Hample and he’s supposedly caught over 8,000 balls (mostly during batting practice where he competes with little kids) in his lifetime. What’s frustrating about Hample catching the ball is the fact he’s not even a Yankees fan and he has no intentions to give A-Rod the ball back. The only reason he comes to games is to catch balls. That’s it.
  • In the two games I went to this season where I sat near Hample, he wore a Mike Trout shirt in a game against the Angels, and a Josh Beckett Marlins shirt at Thursday night’s game. The man isn’t even a Yankees fan. A-Rod deserved better.
  • As for the actual game, the Yankees defeated the Marlins 7-2 for the teams 3rd straight win. It’s been an extremely streaky season thus far. When things are going well, you feel like the Yankees can’t lose, and when things are going bad, it’s like they’re never going to win a game again. The key going forward is clearly consistency, especially from the offense which can look extremely anemic at times.
  • The NBA Finals are in the books, and the Golden State Warriors have won the franchise’s first championship since 1975 with a 4-2 series win over LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers.
  • First off, props to the Warriors who once again proved Charles Darwin’s survival of the fittest theory correct. The bottom line is every team Golden State faced on its road to the title had an injury to a major player, while the Warriors managed to stay completely healthy throughout the whole postseason. Not that they wouldn’t have won without it, but these types of breaks will do it sometimes.
  • Jrue Holiday missed a game and scored a combined 19 points in the three games he did play in Golden State’s sweep of the Pelicans in the first round, Mike Conley Jr. was a shell of himself in Golden State’s second round series against the Grizzlies, and Patrick Beverley missed all of the Western Conference Finals for the Rockets.
  • With Beverley out, the Rockets were forced to start the 37-year-old Jason Terry at point guard in one of the biggest mismatches in recent NBA postseason memory. There was never a chance Terry would be able to match-up with Steph Curry.
  • Then in the Finals, obviously Kevin Love was already out, and then Kyrie Irving broke his knee cap in Game 1 ending his series. That meant the only player Golden State had to worry about in the Finals was LeBron, and he wasn’t going to single handedly beat the deepest and arguably most talented roster in the league.
  • While it would have taken a miracle for LeBron to win his 3rd championship with the supporting cast he was playing with, the King almost pulled it off with the greatest Finals performance I’ve ever seen and we’ll probably ever see in our lifetime.
  • LeBron became the first player in Finals history to lead all players in points, rebounds, and assists per game. The man averaged 35.8 points, 13.3 rebounds, and 8.8 assists per game. That’s not human.
  • The general perception out there is a lot of people don’t like LeBron and I don’t understand why. Instead of hating, people should be admiring what they are seeing because you don’t know when you will see another player like LeBron again. I can understand why people would resent him for saying he’s the best player in the world, but it’s true. No one even comes close to LeBron when it comes to talent and ability.
  • I truly believe if the Cavs had either Kyrie or Kevin Love healthy all series, Cleveland would have won in five or six games. LeBron just didn’t have another consistent option to rely upon.
  • If anyone is going to hold LeBron accountable for losing this Finals, then they’re lost. No other player in the NBA would have made this series close, let alone nearly win it all by himself.
  • With how much energy LeBron has had to exert over the past five seasons, all of which resulted in NBA Finals appearances, you have to wonder how much longer LeBron can continue to carry teams the way he was. If I were running the Cavs, I would seriously consider not playing LeBron until Christmas to conserve his energy. As we saw in these NBA Finals, LeBron was so fatigued by the end he had nothing left to give despite dropping record numbers.
  • When I wrote this column last week, seven Kansas City Royals were slated to start Major League Baseball’s All-Star game for the American League. Well since then, that number has grown to eight with Omar Infante overtaking Jose Altuve for the lead at second base.
  • To put that into perspective, entering Friday night’s action, Infante ranked dead last among all qualified players with a .236 on-base percentage. He was also hitting .228 with zero home runs and 18 RBIs. Those numbers scream All-Star starter don’t they?
  • I just can’t imagine how Joe Buck is seriously going to introduce the American League starting lineup when it is going to be filled with Royals. Even the manager is from the Royals. All I can say is it’s going to be one of the most embarrassing moments in All-Star game history, the fact that players who don’t deserve to be recognized as All-Stars will be introduced like they actually belong. It’s so embarrassing for the sport it will probably be funny.
  • As I said last week, if this is what it’s going to take to fix the All-Star game, then I’m all for it.
  • I’ve decided that the player I want the Nets to select in the NBA Draft at some point is Pat Connaughton from Notre Dame. The dude is a freak athlete and a flat-out competitor. It’s hard to say he’ll be a star in the league, but I can say with certainty he’s a guy I want on my team.
  • Be sure to tune back next Saturday for another edition of Frankly Frankel and make sure to follow me on Twitter @lucasfrankel.
  • Oh and Tiger Woods was reportedly seen playing golf the past two days. I would like a confirmation on this report.
 
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