Blue Jays' GM Alex Anthopoulos landed Troy Tulowitzki and LaTroy Hawkins from the Colorado Rockies in exchange for Jose Reyes, Miguel Castro, Jeff Hoffman and Jesus Tinoco.
Jose Reyes has become a defensive liability, and Tulowitzki is a nice upgrade at SS. The man can also hit, making the league's best offense that much better. This lineup is scary.
Unfortunately, Troy Tulowitzki doesn't pitch. Anthopoulos is going to have to add arms if we're going to see the playoffs in October. Find us another starter, AA! But thanks for Tulowitzki... he's the premier shortstop in baseball.
During the first twenty minutes of episode 130 of my podcast, me and my friend Elvis discuss the 2015 Pan Am Games. Spoiler alert: we completely disagree. It all happens here if you've yet to listen.
As recently as early June, I was all set to hate these games. The term I used at the time was "underwhelmed". After all, the Pan Am Games aren't the Olympics, and at the time, I was stuck on that particular fact.
Then, I attended a torch relay. I had a great time, and when we were all cheering Natalie Spooner on as she ran in and lit the cauldron, I suddenly didn't care that these weren't the Olympics. I finally felt something beyond apathy, and it felt good.
I biked over to another torch relay the afternoon of the opening ceremony, and sat down with the family that night to watch Donovan Bailey base jump from the CN Tower onto the dome. By the time Steve Nash officially kicked things off, I was hooked.
It helped that my two older kids attended an early diving event at the new Aquatics Centre and Field House and raved about both the facility and the ambience. That's when I visited the schedule of events and made it a point to stream them live. That's right, I often had to stream, as many of my targeted events weren't televised live. That's another entry for another time, but streaming the events and Chromecasting them to my big screen was effortless and meant no ads, so I was happy.
Here's a taste of what I watched live:
- Ryan Cochrane in 1500m freestyle swim
- Men’s Baseball final, Canada vs. USA
- Women’s Basketball final, Canada vs. USA
- Andre De Grasse in 100m final
- Damian Warner in Decathlon
- Andre De Grasse in 200m final
- Men's Basketball final, Canada vs. Brazil
- Men's 4x100m relay final
I ended up watching much more than that, particularly in the athletics, but that was my "appointment viewing list". For the most part, it was thrilling, even with the disappointing disqualification in the 4x100m relay final.
Now that the Pan Am Games are over, I can sincerely admit that I'll miss them. It didn't matter to me that they weren't the Olympics. It was entertaining sport, the energy in this city was palpable, visits to Nathan Phillips Square and Pan Am Park were inspiring, and the thousands and thousands of volunteers filled me with pride.
What an amazing 16 days. Well done, Toronto.
In this 130th episode, Mike chats with Elvis about the Pan Am Games, Kim Mitchell, Humble and Fred, and a whole lot more. This episode is exactly 1:02:35.
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Welcome to this week's Open Mike. I'm Mike and I'll be your master of ceremonies for the day.
Feel free to use this space to vent, rant, share a story and/or ask a question of the hivemind.
Brendan Shanahan, President and Alternate Governor of the Toronto Maple Leafs, announced today that Lou Lamoriello has been named the 16th General Manager in the Club’s history. Lamoriello joins the Leafs after previously spending the last 28 years in the New Jersey Devils organization.
I didn't see this coming, did you?
It seems like Andre De Grasse has come out of nowhere. The 20-year old Canadian only started sprinting in 2012, and a mere 3-years later he's a bonafide threat to Usain Bolt and Justin Gatlin in the 100m.
Last night, we saw him win gold in the Pan Am Games with a time of 10.05 seconds. He recently ran a wind-aided 9.75 to win the NCAA championship and is the first Canadian to legally break the 10-second barrier in 15 years. And remember, he's just twenty and three years into this sport.
Next month he'll be at the world championships in Beijing to take on the elites, Justin Gatlin and Usain Bolt. He's not there yet, but he's rapidly improving and if he ever gets that start right, he'll consistently run under 10-seconds. He's also pretty awesome in the 200m.
Canada hasn't had a world-class sprinter since Donovan Bailey and Bruny Surin. This is exciting.
Did you know your Facebook news feed was determined by a proprietary algorithm? Facebook looks at your level of engagement with the friend, the perceived value of the content, a whole bunch of stuff... then determines what it will serve up to you on your news feed.
I've hated this concept since Facebook introduced it. I don't want their algorithm to determine what I see and what I don't. As a result, I haven't visited my Facebook news feed in years.
I leverage Facebook lists to replace the wall, thus eliminating the dreaded algorithm. Here's how you create such a list:
- Scroll down to Friends on the left side of your News Feed and click More.
- Click Create List.
- Enter a name for your list and the names of friends you’d like to add. Keep in mind you can add or remove friends from your lists at any time.
- Click Create.
There ya go. Bookmark a list that contains all your Facebook friends and that replaces the news feed. You'll see all updates by all friends in reverse-chronological order, just like the good 'ol days.
And if you have so many friends you need the algorithm, get the shears out of the shed. It's time for some pruning.
I watched every minute of last night's gold medal baseball game between Canada and the United States. No, it wasn't on television, but a live stream was readily available here. I Chromecast it to my television screen and settled in for a great night of ball.
With the game tied at 4, it went into extra innings. That's when things got a little weird. International baseball has this bizarre rule where you start extra innings with runners at first and second and lead off with any part of the lineup you desire. Crazy, eh? It reminds me of slo-pitch tournaments where we start extras with a runner on second base and one out, but that always made sense because another game was scheduled to use the same diamond right afterwards.
Once I wrapped my head around this little twist, I watched the United States score two runs in the top of the 10th and hoped for the best. That's when I witnessed my first ever walk-off failed pickoff play.
The camera angles for this game were less than ideal. On this final, exhilarating, gold medal clinching play, I didn't even know we were sending the winning run in from third. Suddenly, while I was still celebrating the tying run, there was a play at the plate. I've never seen anything like it.
Here's how it all went down. Crazy!