Shanoff's Wake-Up Call: CC, Manny, Trades

Today's Calls: CC Sabathia vs. Cy Young, Greg Maddux vs. Manny Ramirez, Renaldo Balkman vs. Kwame Brown, LeBron James vs. Barack Obama and More. ↵The Opening Pitch: OK, so maybe "CC Sabathia for the NL Cy" was a wee bit premature. ↵

↵I think everyone was ready to call him the new frontrunner if he was able to lead the Brewers past the Cubs in the opener to the week's biggest series. ↵

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↵Instead, Sabathia was tagged for 3 runs in less than 7 IP, which might have been enough if not for Salomon Torres' spotty, game-choking work in the 9th. ↵

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↵For lesser pitchers, a start like that might have been just fine; for Sabathia -- with those Cy-sized expectations -- it wasn't enough. ↵

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↵Oh, and the Brewers missed a chance to pull into a tie in the NL Central with the Cubs; they now sit 2 games back (but still 2 games in front of the Cards for the NL Wild Card). ↵

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↵CC as Cy-Cy will have to wait. ↵

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↵More Rivalry Games: Twins blank White Sox, thanks to a CG shutout (6 H) by Kevin Slowey, only the 3rd AL pitcher to throw 3 CG. ↵

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↵And the Angels own the Red Sox, having beaten Boston 6 straight; again, it's entirely worthless if they can't beat them in October. ↵

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↵Milestones: Manny being masher. Ramirez became only the 8th player ever to hit 20 HR in 14 straight seasons. (Trade him? Ha!) ↵

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↵Meanwhile, are the Phillies so good that they don't need Manny? Really? (So they would have to stick him in RF: Who cares? You aren't getting him for his D.) ↵

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↵More Milestones: Greg Maddux wins No. 351, and it was so much more thrilling than 350: He had gone 14 straights starts without a win. ↵

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↵More MLB Trade Deadline Names: Is Mark Teixeira on his way to Arizona? In a division that could be had with 81 wins, he could be the difference. ... AJ Burnett sure makes a lot of money for a guy who just matched his career-high for wins at an underwhelming 12 (he's also unlikely to be traded anymore). ... Adrian Beltre is a fantasy stud (2 HR, 4 RBI). ↵

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↵Injury Watch: As expected, Jorge Posada will miss the rest of the season with shoulder surgery. If the Yankees are going to make a playoff push, it won't be with their longtime catcher. ↵

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↵NFL Camping: Imagine being Aaron Rodgers right now. The good news for Packers fans is that no game could possibly be more pressure-packed than his first camp session as Brett Favre's replacement. ↵

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↵Meanwhile, what really matters is how NFL camping affects your fantasy football draft prep. Here are SN's latest rankings. ↵

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↵Is the NFL's discipline policy uneven? I'd say so; Marshawn Lynch won't be penalized for his offseason hit-and-run. ↵

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↵Tim Donaghy to be sentenced today: The max is 33 months, but I'd put the over/under at 24. (The smart money would take the over.) ↵

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↵NBA Trade: Renaldo Balkman to the Nuggets, which strikes me as little more than Mike D'Antoni and Donnie Walsh giving a big middle finger to Isiah Thomas and his recent draft strategies. ↵

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↵Kwame Brown joins the Pistons: As any Wizards or Lakers fan will tell you, Detroit can't possibly win the East now. ↵

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↵USA Oops: LeBron practices, and Coach K doesn't want to be Larry Brown and leave talent on the bench. ↵

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↵More Olympics: Paul Hamm drops out. The 2004 gold winner in men's all-around gymnastics is simply too hurt to compete this year, ending what was one of the more dramatic comebacks of these Games. ↵

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↵The IOC's decision to store Olympic athletes' drug samples for 8 years means that we're due for a scandal just in time for, oh, 2016. ↵

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↵CFB: Notre Dame's 3-win season (and the accompanying all-time-great schadenfreude) was likely the highlight of the year for many of us. Just confirming: They can't possibly do worse, right? ↵

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↵CBB: Tom Crean gets 2-year extension through 2017-18, which is funny, because that was the over/under for the end of IU's NCAA probation. ↵

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↵Sports and Politics: LeBron donated $20K to Barack Obama, which instantly makes LeBron more politically active than Michael Jordan ever was. Is this new combined force of nature called "LeBama?" ↵

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↵(Would it really surprise you that James supported the greatest basketball player to ever run for President?) ↵

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↵Blogs: Did you enjoy yesterday's Favre-for-Manny trade scenario? Tirico Suave follows me, but makes up for it with Photoshop goodness. ↵

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↵The Last Word: Valdosta, Georgia as "Titletown, USA?" Eh, I would have picked Gainesville. But points for contrarian obscurity. ↵

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↵Dan Shanoff writes The Wake-Up Call every weekday morning for SportingNews.com and blogs daily at DanShanoff.com. Got any comments, questions or feedback? Email Dan at shanofftsn-[at]-gmail-[dot]-com. ↵

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This post originally appeared on the Sporting Blog. For more, see The Sporting Blog Archives.

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