Shanoff's Wake-Up Call: Tiger, Zack, Amare

Today's Calls: Tiger vs. the U.S. Open, Zack Greinke vs. Roy Halladay, Pudge Rodriguez vs. Matt Wieters, Amare Stoudemire vs. Al Jefferson, Sam Young vs. the NBA Draft, Brett Favre vs. Zygi Wilf, Ryan Leaf vs. the Border Patrol and More. ↵

↵The Opening Pitch: Tiger vs. the Field? How about Tiger vs. the Crowd? ↵

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↵The last time the U.S. Open was at Bethpage was notable not (just) for Tiger's win, but for the rowdy crowds in the gallery -- fans going nuts trump Nantz-like hushed tones. ↵

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↵There was this great video put out yesterday by Slate that overlaid high-energy college hoops announcers over golf broadcasts -- it was hilarious... and fortuitous: The Bethpage crowd at this Open is as close as golf will come to generating that kind of fun: Like Cameron Crazies taking a road trip to Long Island. ↵

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↵Golf is so dominated by Tiger -- Is Tiger winning? Is Tiger losing? Is Tiger hitting? Is Tiger eating a snack? -- it needs all the energy it can get. ↵

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↵This Open is no exception: Between his win at Bethpage in 2002 to his epic, best-of-his-career win at last year's Open to his win at the Memorial the last time he teed it up, all signs point to yet another "If it's Tiger vs. the Field, I'll take Tiger" moment. (Yes, Phil playing with Amy on his mind is big, too.) ↵

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↵But the enthusiastic gallery -- maybe we should call it The Gallery, because this boisterous crowd deserves that kind of honor -- will make all the golfers feel like Tiger for a few days. Golf honchos, who have come to be addicted to Tiger buzz, could learn a lesson from that: Hey, this game can be fun. ↵

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↵MLB Talking Points ↵

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↵• Ack! Zack!: Greinke's slump continues. ↵

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↵• Nats terrible: Yet can beat Yanks? ↵

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↵• Milestone Watch: Pudge passes Fisk. ↵

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↵• Key injuries: Roy Halladay to DL (groin). ↵

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↵• Rookie Watch: Wieters hits 1st career HR ↵

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↵• Sosa, Cont'd: As expected, Congress is curious ↵

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↵• Fantasy Stud: Scott Richmond (8 IP, 1 ER, 11 K). ↵

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↵NBA Trade Rumors: Amare for Al Jefferson and the No. 6 pick? Minnesota would be getting fleeced -- presuming he is healthy coming off his knee injury (a big presumption), Al Jefferson is better than Amare. PLUS the pick? David Kahn: Off to a great start! ↵

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↵Lakers celebrate: Kobe seems happier than he ever did during the first three titles. (Kobe also did Conan last night -- obligatory joke about Kobe's "game face.") ↵

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↵NBA Draft: Sam Young is THE sleeper of this year's draft. Finally: Something that Mike DeCourcy and I can agree on! (Woo, Mike D! 4th item.) ↵

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↵NBA Coaching Carousel: McHale out in Minnesota. Kevin Love scoops NBA media (although I could have tweeted "Kevin McHale isn't coming back" months ago and inevitably been right). ↵

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↵Favre Watch: "Right now, it's all up to Brett Favre in terms of where his future is at." -- Vikings owner Zygi Wilf, saying nothing to make us think that Brett Favre won't be joining the Vikings in the next few weeks. ↵

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↵NHL Awards Day: Should be another big night for Alex Ovechkin. Custance's preview here. ↵

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↵SN CFB Preview: No. 79 Mississippi State, intriguing because they brought in Urban Meyer protege Dan Mullen, who brings enthusiasm but zero head-coaching experience to a rebuilding job in the brutal SEC. (And, truth be told, I regularly had issues with Mullen's play-calling at Florida.) ↵

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↵CBB: Terrible news about BYU coach Dave Rose, whose family revealed yesterday that he has pancreatic cancer. Best wishes for him, his family and the BYU basketball community. ↵

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↵Justice: Oh, Ryan Leaf, is there any slow sports day you can't make better? ↵

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↵The Last Word: What an incredible demonstration that those handful of Iranian soccer players were wearing green wristbands in solidarity with the demonstrations going on there. They were not wearing the wristbands after halftime. But the symbol was noted, worldwide. ↵

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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. Follow him on Twitter at twitter.com/danshanoff. ↵

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

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