By TOM JONES | Times Staff Writer
Enough already. Enough. Enough. Enough. Here are some of the stories we're sick of these days.
|Andre Roy sent home
So the Lightning enforcer was sent home for carrying on after a couple of fights in Thursday night's game at Philadelphia. Why? Seriously, what's the problem? For starters, all hockey enforcers are a can or two short of a six-pack. That's what makes them so scary and, ultimately, effective. It's not easy going out and taking punches in the face to help your team. Seems as if going off the deep end now and then should be allowed. Heck, it should be encouraged. Besides, anyone who shows that kind of emotion in a season this far gone deserves a pat on the back, not a plane ticket home. And don't tell me he is a distraction. A distraction from what?
|Rocco Baldelli not feeling well
We love Rocco. Really, we do. Nothing would make us happier than seeing Baldelli in the lineup on opening day because a.) he's a heck of a ballplayer when he's healthy and b.) he's a heck of nice guy. But it grows more frustrating each day to hear how he just doesn't feel well enough to play. This after missing 127 games last season and 70 games the season before that. This is not to suggest he isn't legitimately hurt. We're sure there is something wrong. It just gets frustrating not to see him out there regularly with the Rays. It might eventually come down to either playing in pain or hanging 'em up.
|Whether Evan Longoria
is staying or going
Listen, Willie Aybar might be a nice enough fella, but are you going to pay money to watch him play? I'll pay money to go see the Rays' No. 1 pick (No. 3 overall) in 2006, Evan Longoria, play third base. Hey, Rays, if it's an issue of money and starting his major-league clock, well let us know that. When you decide to go ahead and start his clock, that's when I'll help you pay him by buying tickets to the games. Sounds fair, don't you think?
|NASCAR stories about cheating
Each week, we watch a race on TV and get all jacked up for our guy, whether it be J.J. or Gordon or Junior or Tony or whomever. The race ends. And then a day later, we find out which teams cheated. You would think big fines and docking points and suspending crew chiefs would keep everyone's noses clean. But then the next week, someone else goes out with a little oomph in the fuel or a missing bolt. Hey, NASCAR, start suspending drivers for two or three races at a time and watch how quickly the shenanigans end.
Here's what I'm going to do. I'm going to keep going to games at Tropicana Field until someone tells me to go to games down by the water. And if that day never comes, then I'll just keep going to games at Tropicana Field. The next thing I want to hear about a ballpark down at the Al Lang Field site is when it's opening or when it's dead. Till then, see you at the Trop — as long as Longoria is there.
|Roger Clemens and steroids
Here's what I want. I want someone in a more powerful position than me — say commissioner Bud Selig — to pull Roger aside and say, "Look, I don't know if you did any funny business or not. But here's a deal for you: We'll stop snooping around and, in exchange, you just go away. Don't show up at any minor-league camps. Don't come out of retirement for the 16th time, and tell your lawyer, Rusty Whatchamacallit, to shut his piehole. You go away, and we'll go away. Deal?''
|Bucs' quarterback situation
Wouldn't it be nice to be a fan of the Giants or Colts or Patriots or Steelers? You have a quarterback. You don't need to worry about your backup. Around here, the Bucs have a good quarterback, but Jeff Garcia is so old that they have to bring in every quarterback coming down the pike just to cover themselves. They have a retired guy (Jake Plummer), another backup who has already been through here (Brian Griese), another QB who gave up his spleen (Chris Simms) but still doesn't have the trust of the head coach. Then you have Luke McCown and Bruce Gradkowski, who seem like nice guys but as far as quarterbacks go they, well, seem like nice guys. We keep waiting to see Vinny Testaverde, Jack Thompson and Steve DeBerg show up at One Buc.
|Bucs' salary cap
All we heard all offseason is how the Bucs had $44-million of cap space. And in the end, we get a pretty good center and … who?
He doesn't even own the Lightning yet, and I'm tired of hearing about the Lightning sale. You buying the team or what?