The Giants kept on rolling this week, the Jets lost to a good Saints team (but traded for troublemaker Braylon Edwards), hockey season started—with mixed results for the three local teams—the Mets held a day-long press conference on Monday to announce the firing of two coaches, and the $200 million juggernaut that is the Yankees steamrolled over the Twins in the opening game of their playoff series.
Here are some fun facts about the Yanks and Twins:
CC Sabathia eats more food in one year than the farmers of Minnesota produce combined.
Brett Favre was warming up in the Twins bullpen in the seventh inning of Wednesday’s game.
George Steinbrenner gave an inspired speech to the team down in Tampa after the Yankees’ final regular-season game. It was short, yet fiery: “Where the hell is my damn calzone?!”
After defeating the Tigers in their dramatic one-game showdown on Tuesday, the Twins immediately called Darryl Strawberry, Lenny Dykstra, and Keith Hernandez to find out the most effective way to destroy a plane on a flight to New York.
Carlos Gomez almost missed third base, fell down, and stopped running when heading for home with the winning run against Detroit because he briefly thought he was back on the Mets.
The real reason Kevin McHale was fired by the Timberwolves was that he spent the last month of his tenure trying to trade Joe Mauer and Justin Morneau to the Red Sox.
Kate Hudson first met Alex Rodriguez when she approached him about tips on steroid use, because her husband at the time—Chris Robinson of the Black Crowes—weighed only 39 pounds.
The Yankee players have a plan if they fall behind in the series—they realize that they make so much money they can just buy the Twins and force them to pitch Nick Punto and Michael Cuddyer in Games Four and Five.
Trying to change his manager’s mind about not playing him in Game Two, Jorge Posada committed two passed balls on Wednesday to show that it’s not just A.J. Burnett he has trouble with—he can’t catch anybody.
Former Yankees and Twins player Chuck Knoblauch will be honored before tonight’s game by being handcuffed and hauled away to jail.
Player of the Week
Steve Smith: After his 11 catch, 134 yard, two touchdown day on Sunday, he now leads the NFL in catches, yards, and TD receptions. He’s stepped up big-time and turned what seemed like a weakness for the Giants into a strength.
Eli Manning: He had another impressive game on Sunday, although he had to leave with a foot injury. His consecutive games streak is now in doubt. I always thought that the only way he would miss a game would be if he had to film another commercial. Manning moved up to third on the all-time Giants list for TD passes (106), passing Sir Francis Tarkenton. He has a long way to go to catch Phil Simms (199) and Charlie Conerly (173).
Michael Boley: The linebacker recorded a sack and five tackles (four in the backfield for losses), but now he has to have surgery—“and like that...he’s gone.” The Giants D held Larry Johnson to 53 yards.
Bryan Kehl: He recovered a fumble on the opening kickoff and grabbed an onside kick to start second half. And guess what? He’s out with an injury, too. The Giants better be careful or they’ll turn into the Mets.
Darrelle Revis: It was another shutdown game for the shutdown cornerback.
Alex Rodriguez: He closed out the regular season with two homers and seven RBI—all in one inning—which set the AL record for most ribbies in an inning. And he got two hits and drove in two runs...in the playoffs! Maybe he doesn’t know the postseason has started yet.
CC Sabathia/Derek Jeter/Hideki Matsui: They all did what they were supposed to do in Game One.
John Tavares/Michael Del Zotto: The teenagers made their NHL debuts and both scored their first career goals this week. The Islanders phenom had a goal and two assists in a pair of games, while the Rangers’ 19-year-old defenseman racked up four points in four games, with two goals and two assists, and was plus-one.
Marian Gaborik: So far, so good for the Rangers’ big-money acquisition. He piled up four goals and two assists in the team’s first four games, and scored the tying and winning goals in the third period on Thursday night to beat Washington.
Nelson Figueroa: The journeyman right-hander threw a complete game shutout on Sunday. The Mets are finally firing on all cylinders, with a three-game winning streak. You mean the season’s finally over? After the game, Mets players threw their hats and other equipment into the crowd, but the fans threw it all back.
Schmuck of the Week
Mark Sanchez: He’s not really a schmuck, just a rookie. He threw three INTs and fumbled once, leading to two Saints TDs. It had to happen sooner or later.