Sunday, August 3, 2003

Enquirer Power Rankings

Best & worst of the week in sports

By Michael Ball
The Cincinnati Enquirer

Thumbs up

1. Bob Hope, former minority owner of the Cleveland Indians. The funnyman/American institution passed away last week. He loved his hometown Indians and was on the cover of Sports Illustrated on June 3, 1963, after buying a stake in the team. He loved his golf, too, and once said of President Gerald Ford's game: "He's the worst driver since Ben Hur." Classic.

2. The Reds. We're sorry for getting riled up. John Allen cleared it all up. He said trading your closer and two best players for prospects and cash isn't salary dumping. Or a fire sale. It's salary restructuring. Ohh.

3. Dave Miley. More than 1,000 victories in the minors, and now he gets his chance to run a big-league team. Or now, a not-so-reasonable facsimile of one.

4. Ohio State. The defending national champs look as if they'll be a consensus top-five preseason pick. Too bad all the preseason ink has been about the off-field antics of Maurice Clarett.

5. LeBron James. As they say, the guy hasn't bounced a ball yet. But his jersey sales are second only to some Jordan guy, and the Cavaliers are going to be on national television 13 times this regular season. The last time the Cavs were on national TV? Try Dec. 6, 2000, against the Bulls.

6. The Lowell Spinners. Minor-league baseball needs giveaways, so it's not surprising they'll give away bobbleheads Aug. 21. Bobbleheads of a former Spinner? Not exactly. They're of Jack Kerouac! The author was a football and track athlete at Lowell High and spent part of 1942 as a sportswriter.

7. The Bengals. Everything seems to be going according to Marvin Lewis' plan. But shouldn't that mock game thing they did Saturday have involved mock coach Dick LeBeau and his mock NFL team?

8. ESPN. Their self-promotion can be a bit much, but the network's inside look at SportsCenter was interesting. Who said those TV types were just a bunch of party boys?

Thumbs down

1. Pete Rose. OK, this is the 25-year anniversary of a thumbs down. It was that long ago this week that Rose's 44-game hitting streak was ended. Pete's reaction? "The guy pitched me like it was the last out in the seventh game of the World Series." He was speaking of Gene Garber, who struck out Pete in his final at-bat.

2. The Soap Box Derby. The rally stock winner of last week's competition was disqualified for some abnormality of the back axle. Don't lose faith in the kids. It won't be long before someone will be cheating in the Little League World Series.

3. Anna Kournikova. Seems her career could be in jeopardy because of back problems. Sighhhhhh.

4. The Anaheim Angels. The good news is they got rid of Kevin Appier and his 5.63 ERA. The bad news? They're paying him some $15 million to not pitch for them.

5. Alex Rodriguez. Said he'd consider a trade to another team - perhaps a contender - if it would help the Rangers, of course.

6. Rick Majerus. The coach seems to have gotten Utah on probation. Something about extra meal money. That's a joke, right?

7. Emmitt Smith. The future Hall of Famer couldn't help but take some shots about how bad it was in his final year as a Cowboy. And he expects better things in Arizona?

8. Fishing on TV. Suppose if you didn't have enough energy to actually get up and fish, you'd enjoy staying on the couch and watching it.

Reds 5, Giants 4
Casey finds plenty to talk about
Hoy enters Reds Hall today
Ten Reasons to Still Watch the Reds
Reds E-mail: Trades raise optimism, ire
Reds Chatter

NL Games: Diamondbacks end skid
AL Games: Olerud had 7 RBI for M's
Selig admits labor deal hasn't done job
Group wants Expos to play in Mexico
Who's Hot & Who's Not

Conditioning paying off for Bengals
Starters shine in mock game
Bengals E-Mail: Camp appears more aggressive this year
Inside Training Camp
Meet The Bengals: John Thornton

Holcomb leads Browns QB battle
George not tired of running
Hall of Fame ceremony today
The Hall of Fame inductees
Simms shines in Tampa Bay debut

UC's Kirkland charged with assault
Logan is hopeful the NBA will call

Elder ready to start again
New perspective on Kentucky sports

Masters Tennis buildup begins
U.S. Open wide open without Serena
Roddick steams; Henman wins

Metro softball champs reunited

Harvick relishes pole, time at Indy
Brickyard 400 Notebook

IRL future lies in road courses
NASCAR to consider points system change
Junqueira nabs CART pole

Six-birdie round lands Furyk in Buick Open lead

Enquirer Power Rankings
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